If you are interested in being an English teacher in a foreign country, Russia is a good option. You will be immersed in several different cultures, as Russia shares borders with 14 other countries. Though you make less money teaching in Russia than you would in most European countries, Russian employers of English teachers offer the best of benefits. There are, however, many factors to consider before planning to do this. |
How difficult would it be for me to find a position teaching English in Russia?
There is no scarcity of available jobs for English teachers in Russia. In fact, the big language schools are said to have a revolving door for these teachers. Russia is in the process of trying to make English a commonly spoken language in the country; thus, there are plenty of positions for English teachers from foreign countries. All you have to do to get started is find a good job site and look for English jobs in Russia. Pretty much all schools require that you be a minimum of age 18 and have a clear criminal record.
What are the qualifications needed to be an English teacher in Russia?
First of all, you need to be 18 years of age or older. It is not necessary that you possess a bachelor's degree, though it is recommended. While most schools will require TEFL certification, it is actually possible to get a job without this. Some language schools that are struggling to maintain business will accept teachers who do not have the certification. Obviously, however, it is always an advantage to have this particular qualification. Remember, there are several schools that actually require it, and these schools are likely to offer higher salaries as well.
What are the visa requirements that I should know about?
The visa requirements for Russia are more stringent than they are for most European countries. In order to obtain a visa before entering Russia, you must have the following items prepared: a form signed by a doctor that certifies that you're HIV negative, a letter of invitation from your employer (this is proof that you're being invited into Russia as an English teacher), a cover letter from your employer, and a visa application with a passport sized photo. You will definitely need the help of your employer and securing a Russian visa.
Do I have to be able to speak Russian in order to get one of these positions?
As with most Eastern European countries, this is not required at all. In the teaching programs, you will be encourage to only communicate with your students in English, so you do not need to know Russian for this purpose. However, it would help you to know some basic Russian so that you are able to communicate with people outside of your time at work. You can actually communicate with most people in English, especially in the big cities. However, if you want to be sure that you can communicate effectively with everyone that you come across, learning some Russian (at least a few basic phrases) would be a very good idea.
What type of salary can expect as an English teacher?
Generally speaking, you can expect a salary of €750-€950 per month. Your payment will often depend on your level of prior experience. For private tutoring, which many teachers choose to do on the side for extra income, you can reasonably charge €20-€40 per hour. This is a reasonable amount, and it will be sufficient for your living expenses in Russia. There are small amount of taxes taken out, but this percentage is not nearly as much as the tax percentage in other European countries. Plus, these taxes are being taken out for the national healthcare policy, which will help you as well.
What kinds of employer benefits can I expect?
Contracts for English teachers in Russia usually include much greater benefits than do equivalent contracts in other countries. Russia is one of a very few countries that offers airfare reimbursement, although the limit is €750. You also have paid holidays, as well as paid sick leave. Your medical coverage is taken care of, and the vast majority of employers will pay for your living accommodations.
Hi I'm Vickie Talsma and I'm a travel-addict turned English teacher and social marketing maven. I teach in Russia and enjoys sharing tips & tricks to follow in a similar teaching - traveling lifestyle. Learn more about how to teach English in Russia.
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