Highest Paying Countries for CELTA Teachers

A man holding a book with 8 different countries' flags on both sides.

Teaching English abroad is one of the most rewarding jobs that ever existed. Many countries around the world actively look for teachers with a CELTA certification, and while some countries are on the lookout for native English-speaking teachers, others may prefer competent university graduates who possess the required qualifications.

Although not the kind of job that makes you a millionaire, teaching English overseas can come with a very attractive salary, one that offers you the luxury of spending as much money as you need, and still have enough money to put in your savings account.

As a teacher with a CELTA certificate abroad, it’s perfectly reasonable to earn a decent salary in top-paying countries. Average salaries can vary and range from $2,000 to over $5,000 per month, depending on the country and region in which you live.

In a career like teaching, it is highly important to keep in mind that high salaries are not always everything. In order to make up your mind on whether or not this job really is the right job for you, you must weigh the local cost of living and benefits package to determine how much you’ll be able to save during your teaching stint.

Top Countries for Paying the Most Money for CELTA Teachers

  1. The United Arab Emirates    US$3,500 – 5,000 per month
  2. Japan                                    US$2,200 – 5,000 per month
  3. Saudi Arabia                          US$3,000 – 4,000 per month
  4. Kuwait                                  US$2,600 – 4,000 per month
  5. Oman                                    US$2,000 – 3,500 per month
  6. Taiwan                                  US$2,000 – 2,400 per month
  7. South Korea                          US$1,600 – 2,000 per month
  8. China                                     US$1,500 – 2,000 per month

1. The U.A.E. ($3,500-$5,500 per Month)

Generally speaking, the highest-paid CELTA jobs in the world are found in Abu Dhabi and Dubai, the two biggest cities in the UAE. Salary packages for teachers in the United Arab Emirates can range between $3,500-$5,500 (12,300-20,400 AED) per month, depending on experience.

Aside from the high salary, you can also expect to receive extensive benefits in the UAE, including a housing allowance, relocation allowance, flights home as well as government health care. In addition to that, your salary will most likely be tax-free! When all of this is combined, it’s effortless to save lots of money while teaching in the U.A.E!

2. Japan (US$2,200 – 5,000 per month)

For teachers in Japan, holding a CELTA certificate is desirable. Japan is one of the most beautiful places to work in. EFL teachers will enjoy the beautiful scenery, cherry blossoms, festivals, and superb food. On top of that, expect to be paid around US$3,000 per month with other benefits such as flight and accommodation.

3. Saudi Arabia ($3,000-$4,000 per Month)

Experience is always beneficial, and CELTA certificates are usually necessary, but salaries in Saudi Arabia are typically within the range of $3,000-$4,000 (11,000-15,000 SAR) per month. Benefits are generally extensive, and you can expect housing, flights, and health care to be covered.

4. Kuwait ($2,600-$4,000 per Month)

Due to a high number of international schools, job opportunities are plentiful for English teachers. Kuwait City may be surrounded by desert, but the city itself is buzzing! It’s clean and modern, with skyscrapers, green parks, clubs, shopping, and a vibrant expat community.

CELTA teacher salaries in Kuwait range from $2,600-$4,000 (785-1,200 KWD) per month, tax-free. Most employers require teacher certification and experience, especially for higher salaries in this range.

5. Oman ($2,000-$3,500 per Month)

Oman is one of the most developed countries in the Arab world, and it has seen rapid advancements in its education system over the recent years.

Teacher salaries in Oman can range from $2,000-$3,500 (750-1,350 OMR) per month, and with a very low cost of living (around $700 per month), you’ll have plenty of opportunities to expand your savings!

6.Taiwan (US$2,000 – 2,400 per month)

Salaries in Taiwan are much like South Korea, where teachers can earn US$2,000 – US$2,400 per month.

The cost of living in Taiwan is lower compared to Korea, which makes saving money way much easier. 

As a CELTA holder, you can land a job from teaching in a kindergarten to university, public and private schools.

7. South Korea (US$1,600 – 2,000 per month)

South Korea has a similar package offered to English teachers in Japan. 

This country, though, has fewer tourists than in Japan. 

CELTA teachers in South Korea can earn a salary of around US$2,000 per month, and often includes accommodation and airfare. A CELTA certificate and a bachelor’s degree is required to teach English in South Korea.

8. China (US$1,500 – 2,000 per month)

China is the largest employer of ESL teachers in the world. The low cost of living and salary range from US$1,500 to US$2,000 per month make it one of the ideal locations for English teachers. An English teacher in China can work for a private company or in a public school as students hoping to pursue higher education in China can use some English skills.

How Can Holding a CELTA Certificate Affect Your Salary?

Being a CELTA certificate holder can dramatically change your fortunes at any workplace. For example, someone who has a CELTA certificate will probably earn a higher salary than someone who doesn’t have a certificate. This is due not only to the basic rule that a more qualified teacher will earn more but also that teachers with higher qualifications have more access to a wider range of jobs, including positions at universities.

CELTA’s reward comes from the unique experience of living in another culture, communicating with new people, and facing different challenges almost daily. However, that doesn’t mean your wages aren’t important, and it is useful to know where pays the most so that you can live as comfortably as possible.

Things to keep in mind as a CELTA holder. 

  • Most importantly, do not expect all salaries to be like those listed above, especially when you’re just starting.
  • Your salary will most likely be a lot less in Europe and Latin America than it would be in Asia.
  • Remember that even if you have a good salary, you may still only save a little bit, depending on the country’s cost of living.
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