I often receive questions from other travelers on how to live location independent, how to stay on the road, and how to make money while traveling. One of the first things I tell people is, “Get your TEFL Certification”.
Just to clarify, for anyone who may not know, TELF is an online course program that upon passing, gives you certification to teach English overseas.
Before I left home almost 2 years ago, I obtained my TELF as a backup at a website like TEFL 24/7, just in case my online ventures came to a screeching halt. It has been a comfort knowing that I have such a good backup plan. There are so many other perks in securing your TELF.
In this post let’s look at some of the highlights of having a TELF and why I think it is one of the most useful tools for both short and long term travelers.
1- Local Experience
When teaching English aboard, you are immersed in local life and surroundings. You get a better feel for the culture and you have the opportunity to make long lasting relationships with the locals.
This is something that can only happen when you’re grounded in the same spot for an extended period of time. This is quite different from backpacking where you are only in the same city for a few days before heading somewhere new.
2- Get Paid to Live Abroad
I meet many people that dream of living on the road, but tell me that they have not found a way to make a sustainable income while doing it.
Teaching abroad is a rare occurrence in that you have the ability to not only live aboard and keep your travels going, but you also get the chance to save money to fund your next adventure.
How perfect is that!
You get to travel, experience another culture, and make money while doing it. Some countries like Dubai and Japan pay upwards of 2,000+ USD a month for teachers.
Popular places hiring teaches right now are Southeast Asia, China, Korea, Japan. Also some countries in Europe like Poland, and some jobs in France, that would let you explore all the best national parks in France . If you want to travel, become part of a culture and what better way!?
3- Decrease Expenses
Most countries that hire teachers abroad provide amazing benefits. This allows you to save that extra travel cash you have been dreaming about. Like I said before, some countries pay upwards of 2,000+ a month; now imagine how much of that you can save to travel when the company you work for pays for your apartment, utilities, transportation, and gives you a food allowance.
This means you can save almost everything. This allows you to secure a means to travel to other exotic lands after your contract ends.
4- Learn a Language
What better way to learn a language than to spend an entire year in a country surrounded by locals?
True, it might take some effort on your part but learning a language is much easier when you are immersed in it. Also, you can easily take lessons and practice your skills with other teachers, your students, and basically everyone you meet.
5- A TEFL Certification is a Fantastic Backup Plan
There might be times when you run short of money while traveling and yet you want to stay on the road. Having a TEFL certification is an incredible tool because if you find yourself in dire straits, you always have a job to fall back on.
Many countries need native English teachers, and you should have no trouble finding a job if you really want one.
As you can see, there are many advantages of getting your TELF. One of the most beautiful things about it, is that you can do it online.
Even if you are traveling as you read this, you can start on a new career path as an overseas English teacher.
My Experience and Why I Recommend Getting Your TEFL Certification
For the last three months I have been using my TEFL certification to tutor Chinese Students online. It gives me a steady income as I move place to place and work on building this website.
I enjoy teaching all my students, and have a great time working with them one on one. It makes it more personal, and this is an opportunity I would have never had without first obtaining my TEFL.
But don’t just take my word for it here are what a few people said on Facebook.
If you think getting your TEFL certification is the right option for you then you’re in luck.