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Non-native speaker of English to teach English in Vietnam

This is a question that comes from one of my YouTube subscribers and I know for sure that there are many people out there with the same question in mind (actually he has two questions).

So, this person wants to teach English in Vietnam and here is his situation:

Finding a job in Vietnam

His questions are:

First of all, everybody can get an English teaching job in Vietnam. Definitely, a native speaker of English can get a job faster than a non-native speaker of English and probably a native speaker of English would be paid better than a non-native speaker. This is something that everybody should be aware of when looking for an English teaching job in Vietnam. So, my short answer to his question is “Yes, you can get an English teaching job in Vietnam”.

The question is how long you are ready to wait for getting a job because everybody is looking for native speakers of English. You might need to contact ten (or even more) language centers in order to get a teaching job and that job might be just a few teaching hours. That job might not be a very well paid job. But, once you get the job and the school likes you, and you build a good relation with other teachers (Vietnamese and foreigners as well) your chance to find another good well paid job increases exponentially.

Having a motorbike and being able to travel around the city is another essential thing. It gives you flexibility and opportunities.

Regarding the second question, I think your degree is valuable. I am not sure how many language centers care about a degree from a Russian university (although it is a Master of English Teaching) but I believe there are private schools (I mean real schools, not language centers that have classes at night) that would be more than happy to hire someone with this kind of degree.

There are many available jobs in school management, training department etc; well paid jobs you might want to try as well. In this situation having that degree is a great advantage.

Regarding the question about the work permit, I have to be honest, it’s been more than three years since I personally asked about it and the conditions for getting a work permit have changed several times since.

Then, there is another thing. Since Vietnam and Russia have official agreement on mutual recognition of university degrees, they might have some kind of agreement on working conditions. I have been living in Vietnam since 2005 and nobody would give me a work permit.

I suggest you to ask someone who is Russian and works in Vietnam or figure it out when you get here. Maybe Russian Embassy in Vietnam can give you details about this matter!

So, this is it and hopefully my answer might be useful for others too.


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