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How much do English teachers make in Korea?

How much do English teachers make in Korea?


English teaching has become a popular profession in Korea, offering a chance to experience a new culture and earn a decent salary. In this article, we will explore the salary range of English teachers in Korea and the factors that affect their earnings.

The Basic Salary:

The basic salary for English teachers in Korea ranges from 2.1 million to 2.5 million won per month. This amount varies depending on the type of institution, qualifications, and experience of the teacher.

The Benefits:

Besides the basic salary, English teachers in Korea receive various benefits such as health insurance, pension, severance pay, and paid vacation. These benefits can add up to 10-20% of their monthly salary.


The qualifications of an English teacher play a crucial role in determining their salary. Teachers with a Bachelor’s degree and a TEFL/TESOL certificate can expect to earn more than those without one. A Master’s degree or higher can also increase their earning potential.


Experience is another important factor that affects the salary of an English teacher. Those with several years of experience can negotiate for higher pay and better job positions.

Type of Institution:

The type of institution where the teacher works also influences their salary. Public schools, universities, and international schools generally offer higher salaries than private language institutes or hagwons.


The location of the institution is another factor that affects the salary of an English teacher. Teachers working in Seoul or other metropolitan areas may earn more than those working in rural areas.

Overtime Pay:

English teachers in Korea can earn extra income through overtime pay. However, this depends on the institution’s policy and workload.

Housing Allowance:

Some institutions offer a housing allowance or provide free accommodation to their teachers. This can significantly reduce the teacher’s living expenses and increase their overall income.

Language Proficiency:

English teachers who are fluent in Korean or other languages may have an advantage in negotiating for higher pay, especially in institutions that require bilingual teachers.

Visa Status:

The visa status of an English teacher can also affect their salary. Those with an E-1 visa (university professors) generally earn more than those with an E-2 visa (language instructors).


In summary, the salary range for English teachers in Korea varies depending on several factors such as qualifications, experience, location, and type of institution. However, despite the differences in pay, teaching English in Korea remains a fulfilling and rewarding experience for many.

Is it hard to become an English teacher in Korea?

In order to be employed as an English teacher in Korea, you will need to possess both a TEFL certificate and a 4-year college degree. Additionally, it is necessary to obtain an E-2 teaching visa, be a native speaker of English, pass a national-level criminal record check, and pass both a health check and drug test.

Is it worth it to teach English in South Korea?

South Korea is considered to be a top location for teaching English as a foreign language. English teachers in Korea receive good pay, excellent benefits, and a high standard of living, particularly those employed with EPIK.

How many hours do English teachers work in Korea?

Teaching positions in South Korean public schools are the most sought-after and popular. These positions generally follow a regular 9-to-5 schedule, with teaching hours typically not exceeding 22 per week. However, pay and qualifications may differ depending on the local education office.

Which country needs English teachers the most?

ESL teachers prefer China as their top destination due to the country’s large population of over a billion citizens, resulting in a high demand for English language education.

What country pays American teachers the most?

Switzerland is among the top countries in terms of high teacher salaries. At the start of their career, high school teachers in Switzerland can expect to receive a compensation package of 71,500 Fr (equivalent to US $73,646.93), which includes bonuses, overtime pay, and other allowances.

Can you teach English in Korea permanently?

Is it possible to teach English in Korea indefinitely? Although it is technically possible to do so, most people do not stay in this profession for longer than a few years. After 3-5 years, many individuals tend to advance to higher positions within their schools.

Working Hours:

English teachers in Korea typically work 30-40 hours per week, with some institutions requiring additional preparation time outside of class. However, some teachers may work longer hours or have split shifts, which can impact their work-life balance.


English teachers in Korea are required to pay taxes on their income, which can range from 3% to 5%. However, some institutions may provide assistance in filing taxes or offer tax-free benefits such as flight reimbursements.

Cultural Adaptation:

Living and working in a foreign country can be challenging, and English teachers in Korea may need to adapt to a new culture and language. Institutions may provide support such as orientation sessions or cultural activities to help teachers adjust to their new environment.

Career Advancement:

English teaching in Korea can offer opportunities for career advancement, such as becoming a head teacher or curriculum developer. Some institutions may also provide professional development opportunities for teachers to enhance their skills and knowledge.

Job Security:

English teaching jobs in Korea are generally stable, with contracts typically lasting one year or more. However, some institutions may have strict performance evaluations that could impact job security.

Demand for English Teachers:

There is a high demand for English teachers in Korea, especially in private language institutes or hagwons. However, the competition for jobs in public schools, universities, and international schools can be more competitive.


Overall, teaching English in Korea can be a lucrative and fulfilling experience for those who are interested in exploring a new culture while earning a decent salary. While there are several factors that can impact an English teacher’s salary, having the right qualifications and experience can lead to higher pay and better job opportunities.

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