The Philippines is an attractive destination for teaching jobs, especially English as a second language (ESL). ESL jobs are in high demand here, and there are plenty of opportunities to gain valuable experience while living abroad.
With its tropical climate, friendly locals, and low cost of living, the country offers many benefits to those looking to work in the ESL sector. Teaching English in the Philippines can be both a rewarding and enjoyable experience.
So, whether you’re looking for full-time or part-time jobs teaching English, I’ll show you where to find the best jobs online and how you can tap into this home-based reality.
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Are English Teachers in Demand in the Philippines?
If you’re looking for a home-based job that doesn’t take much effort, it doesn’t get any better than being an ESL teacher. However, the Philippines and most of Southeast Asia see a steady demand for English teachers — especially home-based online English teachers with a good grasp of native English.
We’re talking less about grammar and Spoken English — the ability to use English naturally. You see, English has become the lingua franca of Southeast Asia and just about every other country on Earth. And as such, many people want to learn it well enough so they can communicate with foreigners.
There’s also the fact that many of these countries are hubs for outsourcing. That means many people start their careers writing posts for a website or making calls, which require good English.
What Qualifications Do I Need to Teach English Online?
The qualifications required for an online English teacher vary depending on the content you will produce for students. Schools and universities will, of course, demand the highest. That means they’ll accept nothing less than professionals who’ve chosen teaching as a career, not freelancers trying to pick up teaching ESL as a side gig.
On the other hand, online institutes have much more relaxed requirements.
Some people may require a TEFL certification, which is used to certify that you have enough knowledge about teaching English as a second language (ESL). Getting a TEFL certificate is easy enough, and you can get one for a little less than $160 today from a website like TEFL institute.
There’s little much to talk about besides the certification. However, remember that if you decide to be an English teacher home-based, you’ll need to be able to work from home or another location of your choosing. You’ll also need to have access to reliable internet service so that you can be online at all times for teaching assignments.
Can I Teach English Online Without a TEFL Certificate?
Well, yes and no.
Yes, you can teach English full-time online without a TEFL certificate; no, it’s not recommended. Plenty of online companies will take you on without one, but you’ll probably be working for peanuts, and their policies will limit your hours. You could also try your hand at freelancing, but without the proper credentials, I doubt most parents would feel comfortable taking you on — even if you have good English.
A great way to get past this is to use the many online certification programs you’ll find. Many of them award TEFL certificates through accessible programs requiring little to no previous experience.
In general, you’ll be looking at a study period of about six months, and they’ll provide the study materials, too (at least, the right websites will). Getting an online TEFL certificate is a great way to start teaching ESL, and once you have your credentials, it will be much easier to find a job.
Aso read>> How to Get Started Teaching Online Without a Degree
How Much Is the Rate of ESL Teachers in the Philippines?
Before we talk about that, let’s get something clear. First, home-based ESL teacher jobs in the Philippines come mainly in two varieties.
That is, the kind hired by an actual school or institute and the teachers who do freelance teaching on the side. Your payment will vary depending on which kind of ESL teacher you are.
If you’re a regular full-time employee, expect to earn around 15,000 to 20,000 PHP per month (depending on the school or institution where you work). But if you’re a home-based English teacher teaching part-time or doing it for extra income—as some teachers do—then expect to earn about 10,000 to 15,000 PHP per month.
How Can I Become an Online English Teacher?
It depends on the kind of teaching you want to do. Freelance gigs will take little besides a reasonable grasp of English and a computer or mobile phone with internet access. And some basic computer skills.
You can usually find these home-based English jobs on Upwork or Freelancer.com. But, of course, you’ll also need a decent internet connection and a good computer—not to mention a willingness to work with students in other countries!
As for home (or office) based online business English teaching positions, you’ll need to apply directly through the schools or institutions offering them. Keep in mind that if this is a serious institute with a reputation (and a minimum level of certification as a requirement), you’ll also need to get certified by one of the many organizations that offer TEFL or TESOL courses in the Philippines.
Some local schools or institutions will also want you to have some teaching experience needed to sign up. Your qualifications will also be considered: a bachelor’s degree in any field is enough for most schools.
How Do I Become a Certified ESL Teacher in the Philippines?
There are two ways to do this, but both have the same prerequisite if you’re trying to become a certified – emphasis on certified – ESL teacher.
To become a Certified ESL Teacher in the Philippines, you must first apply for a certificate of teaching called a Licensure Examination for Teachers (LET) or an online degree called a TEFL.
The first can be acquired from the DepEd (the official Department of Education in the Philippines), while you can get a TEFL certificate from several sites.
Now don’t get scared. It’s easier than it sounds. As I said, the Philippines is one of the SEA countries with the highest demand for online business English teachers, so becoming one is pretty streamlined.
And more importantly, unlike some other countries that take years to obtain certification, you won’t go broke trying to become a certified ESL teacher in the PH.
After you get your LET or TEFL (I recommend the TEFL), it’s pretty straightforward. Here’s how you can become a certified teaching English online pro:
● The first option is checking online adverts for teacher home-based gigs. These usually involve one or two students from a single family, but you can teach students in batches, so you’re making the most of your time. As you probably guessed, this is the “freelance” option, and your LET certificate is more or less window dressing so that parents won’t be afraid.
● The second, of course, is to sign up with an educational institute. More of these offer home-based jobs than you’d think, and a number of them are ready to pay you anywhere from 80 – 120 PHP an hour (that’s about 1 – 2.5 USD on average) for your services.
Which Country is Best for ESL Teachers?
Most ESL institutes prefer teachers from native English-speaking countries, such as the US and UK. However, you’ll still find plenty of opportunities for those who aren’t native speakers. I suggest applying for jobs in your country first, then expanding outward.
If you’re not finding home-based jobs in your backyard, look at other nearby nations like Malaysia or Singapore; they have a lot of ESL jobs available but also are a little harder to apply for.
For example, suppose you’re from America or Canada and looking for work teaching English to Filipinos. In that case, I suggest signing up for an online ESL course like the 120-hour advanced course and saving yourself 46%. That’s huge savings compared to what I have seen others for.
This course combines the least amount of time and financial investment with the most actual use. A 120-hour Esl teacher course is the minimum requirement most ESL institutes will have for your TEFL certificate. This particular TEFL certificate is from The TEFL Institute, the best place to get your online English education degree!
Related: 25+ Online Jobs from Home Without Investment
What Are the Highest Paying Online ESL Jobs?
And finally, we’re at the fun part. I’m diving right in, so here’s my list of the highest-paying online ESL jobs and what you can expect to get from them:
Skooli is an online education platform that’s become surprisingly popular recently, and you should try it.
Skooli hires English-speaking applicants that have a native-level grasp of the English language. As an English teacher, you’ll be teaching students from middle school to the university level, so be warned that you’ll need pretty good English to work for Skooli.
Retired teachers will love this platform, and stay-at-home moms with a bachelor’s degree in English (or a related field) will have free time.
The pay is competitive, meaning you’ll earn based on your qualifications. Still, anywhere from 8 – 15 USD an hour would be a reasonable guess.
VIPKID, based in Beijing, China, is one of the best places to teach ESL. As you probably guessed, this platform focuses on the early stages of education (that is, from kindergarten through to grade 9), and you’ll need a bachelor’s degree in English to get updated.
However, getting a degree in a related field is easy if you also have a TEFL certificate from a reputed site.
Home-based English teachers on VIPKID will mainly teach Chinese students and expect pay to be average out at $15 an hour (though it can go all the way up to $22 an hour for experienced ESL teachers).
This is one I’m excited to tell you about. So okay, QKids mostly hires US or Canadian applicants with a bachelor’s degree. That’s the drawback.
The benefit is that if you have a bachelor’s degree and nothing to do in your afternoons, QKids is one of the best ways to make money through teaching.
The only investment you’ll need to make is getting at least a 120-hour TEFL certificate, which shouldn’t run you up more than two hundred bucks.
You’ll be working primarily with kids, and your schedule will be updated on the app itself. The pay’s pretty great, too: ESL teachers are paid a base salary of $16 an hour, $1 for being on time, and other performance bonuses.
Whales English is one of the best ESL teaching sites you can work for, and I mean that. They have a wide range of jobs and classes, and while I’ll talk about the pay briefly, I wanted to mention that they have career development opportunities for their teachers.
So, if you want to go somewhere with your teaching gig, Whales English makes that possible.
Now the pay (which is why we’re here, after all). The pay is pretty good: expect to earn around $26 an hour if you’re on time and teaching well, which is significantly higher than the average of $20 an hour you’ll see everywhere else.
The TEFL Institute
Given that this is probably THE best ESL teaching opportunity I found scroll down to read what I think of The TEFL Institute.
Who Pays the Most to Teach English Online?
There are a couple of things I had to consider before making this choice (such as the timings of classes, how long each course was, and how long you had to work for a day), but all in all, I’d feel confident saying it’s The TEFL Institute.
I know, I know. Who is that?
See, The TEFL Institute isn’t just another job-hunting site like Indeed or Freelancer. It’s a site that caters exclusively to ESL teachers, which means you’ll find everything you’ll need here.
For example, The TEFL Institute is where you’ll mainly be doing your TEFL certificate, so it’s already an essential journey step for serious teachers (and freelancers who want to make more than spare change).
And if that wasn’t enough, this website also has a job-hunting section. You’ll find job postings from some of the top ESL institutes in the world here, and that’s because all these institutes trust The TEFL Institute to provide them with good educators.
You’ll also discover some great opportunities for paid internships. Which takes the hassle out of teaching abroad. They plan your whole trip for you!
If everything I’ve said so far has yet to make my point, I’ll say it clearly. Go check The TEFL Institute out!
ESL jobs in the Philippines are a great career, and it’s a lot of fun. You get to meet new people daily and make money while doing it! But before you take that first step into the classroom, get your TEFL certificate because it will open doors like you wouldn’t believe!