Top 5 TESOL Destinations and Why - Oxford Seminars Blog
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Top 5 TESOL Destinations and Why

Here at Oxford Seminars, we get asked all the time about what it’s like to be in a certain country, or where the best place to teach English abroad is. These are tough questions to answer because each country and region has its own charm and reason to visit for a week or stay for a few years. While the answer for where and why to teach in certain countries is different for each person, we’ve compiled a list of the top 5 TESOL destinations we get asked about and why you might want to teach there. Check out these compelling stories about these five amazing countries:

1. Mexico

San Miguel de Allende, Mexico, Overlooking Parroquia Archangel Church

San Miguel de Allende, Mexico, Overlooking Parroquia Archangel Church

“Mexicans are remarkable people. They are very down to earth, humble, caring, welcoming and, most importantly, loving. They made my stay worthwhile, and I’m hungry to go back for new adventures. If you love people and socializing,  this is where you want to be! Dancing, from Salsa to Cumbia, will definitely get your hips moving. Their Latino flavour, whether present in their dancing, mingling, singing or food, will certainly keep you on your toes and wanting more.” — Suzanne Kanzo

For more from Suzanne, check out her blog post, Teaching English Abroad: Seizing the Moment in Mexico.

“I decided to go teach in Mexico… We write up our lesson plans via a program curriculum, however we have flexibility to be creative with our own ideas… The school is very good at honoring the contract I signed with them and you don’t need to know Spanish to work at this school. You teach students (toddlers, children, teens, adults, and business people) in English…

I am from Florida and it feels safer here than in Miami. I find people in town are more personable to me than in the USA. I intend on coming back to work here. This location and job is about a unique experience; it is not  about becoming wealthy or selling school products to students. You are not a salesman, you’re there to teach. This school is about student and teacher satisfaction. The students have been great. I’m going to miss them when I leave.” — K.F.

For more stories like K.F.’s from our graduates, visit our website here.

2. Japan

Japan is a Top Destination for English Teachers

Mt. Fuji with Chureito Pagoda in Autumn, Fujiyoshida, Japan

“Whether you’re thinking about a short term visit or you’re looking for a longer time in country as in teaching English here, getting around is a cinch. If you need help, the Japanese are extraordinarily friendly and kind, always going the extra mile to help out. Getting to teach in Japan is one of the best things I’ve ever done. I’ve been able to go to some amazing places, meet such incredible and helpful people and learn things about myself I might never have known otherwise. If you’re thinking about teaching English abroad, do it! This is your chance to make a difference and explore the world while you’re at it!” — Joy Lee

For more from Joy, visit her blog post, Planes, Trains & Subways: The Amazingly Easy Transportation of Japan.

“To go from reading an article about the wonder of Mount Fuji in Japan to seeing it from my balcony apartment and eventually climbing it, felt like I had accomplished something out of a magazine. It is a beautiful sensation to wake up each morning invigorated by the sense of an impending an adventure.” — Michael Adams

For more from Michael, read his blog post, 5 Reasons I’m Thankful I Chose to Teach English Abroad.

3. Spain

Ronda, Spain at Puente Nuevo Bridge

Ronda, Spain at Puente Nuevo Bridge

“Western Europe is in high demand among ESL teachers but is generally a hard region in which to teach. Spain is one of the easier countries to break into. Although most jobs are reserved for European citizens and in-country applicants, many jobs exist for the teachers willing to invest effort into their application process. Cultural internships abound for young, enthusiastic teachers willing to go on a “cultural exchange” where they teach in a school and often live with a local family for full cultural immersion. This process allows you to really immerse yourself into the culture. Also, Spain’s proximity to other countries allows for travel opportunities throughout/following your contract.” — Roger Olanson

For more from Roger, check out his blog post, Top 10 Countries for Teaching English Abroad.

“My experience teaching English in Spain coincided with the emergence of the no frills airlines in Europe. Through the dramatically discounted fares offered by carriers like Ryanair I was able to take advantage of countless travel opportunities I might not otherwise have been able to afford.  Foreigners and Americans often complain about the number of vacation days Europeans get, but after years spent living there, I learned to view things differently. I viewed generous vacation time as a sign of societies that take care of their workforce by providing generous sick days, health care, and paid holidays. By pairing the vacation days with low cost airfare, I was able to experience the rich culture found throughout Europe.” — Teresa Peipins

For more from Teresa, visit her blog post, Teaching English Abroad: How a Simple Job Opened a Window to the World.

4. China

Chengdu, China at traditional Qintai Road district

Chengdu, China at a Traditional Qintai Road District

“If you’re pondering whether or not to accept a teaching position in China, one thing to consider is what you’ll be doing in your free time. Normally you will receive at least 21 paid holiday days. Two of the major holidays are National Day (7 days) and Spring Festival (7 days). It makes sense to take full advantage of the different destinations that the Middle Kingdom provides during your holidays. The sheer geographical size of China provides many options for tourist destinations to travel to, including a vast amount of cultural destinations that China has developed throughout its 5000 years of history.”

For more details on China, visit our blog post, 5 Reasons to Teach in China.

“Dim Sum… So many new dishes of food to explore in just one meal setting! Besides the sugary bao, I’d discovered a delightful little bell-shaped dumpling filled halfway with broth, called Xiaolongbao! I’d also tried what looked like a cross between a shrimp rangoon and a sushi roll, called siu mai. So delicious!” — Tammy

For more from Tammy, check out her blog post, An Unforgettable Experience with Dim Sum in China.

5. Thailand

Sea of red lotus in Lotus Marsh, Thailand

Sea of Red Lotus in Thailand

“Moving to another country is never easy, especially when you’re alone. But, Oxford Seminars helped me feel prepared, making my first experience teaching English in Thailand a great success. The weather, the people, the scenery and especially my Thai students and Thai teachers were absolutely amazing. It is the perfect place to go if you are new at teaching abroad. It’s a laid back lifestyle and culture that you cannot find anywhere else.” — Chasity Peigan

For more from our graduates like Chasity, visit our blog post, In Their Own Words: Why I Chose To Teach English Abroad.

“In 2001, I rented one of these traditional Thai houses for $50 a month. It was a small, rustic, wooden structure on stilts with glassless windows that could be closed only with shutters, thus blocking out sunlight but keeping the interior cool. I had no hot water for an entire twelve months, but Thailand is warm enough year round that such an amenity is certainly unnecessary for showers. I happily lived in that house for a year with my three adopted Thai dogs in the middle of the lush, tropical foliage that decorated our campus. The great benefit was that I was able to walk conveniently to my office in under three minutes.” — Catherine Kelley

For more from Catherine, read her blog post, Thailand: Teaching English in a Strange Paradise.

Interested in earning a certificate to teach English as a Second Language? Dig deeper into Oxford Seminars to learn how you can experience the varying cultures throughout the world and really live life to its fullest!


  1. GReat info thanks for sharing and you are right the Japanese are e friendly and kind. Japanese are kind hearted :)

    • Hey Muhammad, I totally agreed with your comment.

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