Salary Levels, Experience and Qualifications
The highest salaries are to be made in the big cities mainly Beijing, Shanghai, Chengdu and Shenzhen. Expect wages to drop significantly after that, though many places will provide free accommodation instead.
The most desirable situation for any foreigner whishing to teach in China is to be one of the following three. If you are the second or third then take the SAFEA training course. You take a week out from your teaching schedule to do this. All three mean you will be able to apply for a Z-visa. Salaries can go up to 16,000 RMB a month for 80 hours.
Top: Qualified (BA/Masters), Two years teaching experience abroad and a TEFL/ TESL certificate or equivalent.
No 2: Qualified (BA/Masters), Two years teaching experience abroad
No 3: Qualified (BA/Masters)
No 4: No degree or equivalent and some teaching experience abroad
No degree or equivalent and no teaching experience abroad
With the latter you will still earn a fair wage. It’s common for teachers in cities to be earning 150RMB per hour. If you do 80 hours then you’ll take home over 10,000 RMB. The smaller the place the lower the income; I worked in a place that paid only 1000 RMB a week but it was so cheap to live you were never out of cash and it was absolutely idyllic.
Comparatively, you will find that foreign teachers will earn twice as much as a qualified Chinese teacher who teaches English. This applies to foreigners with no qualifications or experience. Like it or hate it that’s how things are. Generally, compared to most, a foreigner will live a fairly royal life.
There is a tax, though it’s fairly small for foreign teachers. If you are under 5000 then you will be exempt. There will also be plenty of opportunity to do overtime. This includes doing private tuition to supplement your salary which can be found easily in whichever city. You can charge up to 200-300 RMB an hour cash in hand depending on your location which adds massively to your monthly take-home.
Categories: 09 - About Teaching in China