Published 23rd January 2020

The Best Ways to Travel and Teach in the UK

More and more people are becoming familiar with teaching English as a Foreign Language, but many people mistakenly believe that this can only be done in non-English speaking countries. In fact, there is a huge demand for TEFL teachers in countries where English in spoken as a first or official language. The United States, Canada, Australia, New Zealand and South Africa all have big TEFL markets, because students want to immerse themselves in the language while they are studying it. And which country would be at the top of any student’s list? The UK, of course! Here are the best ways to travel and teach in the UK.

How can I teach English in the UK?

In the UK, there are a few options available for TEFL teachers: language schools, summer camps and universities. Each option comes with its own pluses and minuses and which route you choose will depend on what you want from a teaching job. 

If you’re happy to work hard and are trying to save money, then you should look into the private language schools. In UK language schools there are usually plenty of students, which means a need for teachers and especially teachers who are willing to work long hours. TEFL teachers working in a language school are usually paid an hourly rate so the more hours you work the more money you’ll make!

If you are already a fair way down your TEFL journey and are looking for a position which will challenge you professionally then you should try find a job at a university. As you can imagine, many foreign students want to study at a British university but they don’t have the language skills necessary to survive the academic environment. So, many universities offer a foundation year for foreign students so that they can improve their English language proficiency as well as prepare themselves to study in an English-speaking environment. As a TEFL teacher this will mean teaching General English but also English for Academic Purposes.

But, if you would like to live and work in the UK so that you can explore, then you should definitely try and get onto a summer camp.

What do you teach on a summer camp?

Summer camps are run by specialized companies. International students sign up for a week or two or three or even up to eight weeks to be on the camp. These students can be Young Learners but are mostly teens who are spending their school holidays on camp. 

There are different types of TEFL teachers on a summer camp. Some TEFL teachers will live off-site and teach EFL lessons for the morning and then take part in the activities during the day. Other TEFL teachers are residential, meaning they have the same responsibilities but they are given room and board on the camp site. Still others are pastoral, meaning they stay with the campers themselves, so they have added responsibilities relating to meals and bedtimes.

How can I travel while on a summer camp?

The beauty of summer camps is that they are usually in picturesque holiday destinations. In the UK, you are likely to be placed on a summer camp in Oxford, Cambridge, Brighton, Manchester, Nottingham, Canterbury and Edinburgh. Summer camps offer you the opportunity to live in a part of the UK you might otherwise not have known.

What’s more, on summer camps there are days dedicated to excursions and sightseeing. You might jump on a bus to visit the tourist sites of the city you are in, you might take a bus to a nearby town, or you might spend the day at a local attraction. While you will be expected to be on duty for most of the outing, you will also get to enjoy the outing yourself – for free of charge! Plus, you are guaranteed a couple of hours of time to yourself to have lunch or go for a quick shop.

 So if you are thinking of teaching English in the UK, have a look at the summer camp options available to you and pick your next holiday destination!

    1. Hello Jeanette, there would be opportunities to teach English in the UK. For visa advise we would recommend contacting the relevant consulate or embassy as we do not provide assistance or advise on visas. 🙂

  1. I am interested in teaching English at the summer camp in the UK, I got an advanced level TEFL certificate from the TEFL Academy of the UK, I am from the RA, Yerevan

    1. Hello Armine, the best place to search for positions would be through the jobs boards that we provided at the end of course course. I have re-sent them to you via email and hope that this will be hlpful for you. 🙂

  2. I am really keen to English in the UK, as I have family who live there. I would even work as a teachers assistant.
    How do I find tefl jobs like this for me? I unfortunately do not have a bachelor’s degree but I have experience as a locum teacher in Geography and Afrikaans. And loads of other work experience.

    1. Hello Tasha, we do not find specific placements for our students. We have sent you an email with a list of jobs boards which you can use to find and apply for positions. Best of luck with your search. 🙂

  3. Hi, I would like to find out if it is possible to teach in the UK with only the TEFL level 5 certificate or do you need a B. Ed to qualify to work in the UK? I am currently a part time student busy with my B. Ed intermediate phase and also busy completing my Level 5 TEFL course with you guys, so I would just like to get more information please?

  4. Good day

    I’m Refiloe Molisiwa I would like to find out the requirements to teach in th UK, I’ve got a tefl level 5 through The TEFL Academy.

    Thank you
    Refiloe Molisiwa

    1. Hi Ravi, Congratulations on finishing your course! We have a jobs board on our website where you can search for jobs worldwide. You can access the jobs board on our website through the following link: https://www.theteflacademy.com/tefl-jobs. I would also recommend searching through Google for other ESL job sites. We do have a range of internship and volunteer programs that you can apply for though our website at the following links: https://www.theteflacademy.com/internships and https://www.theteflacademy.com/volunteer. I hope you find this helpful and I wish you all the best with your search. 🙂

    2. Hello I would like to know if there are any jobs available for my girlfriend and I ? We both have a honors degree as well as the 120Hour TEFL course.

  5. I have lived and taught in South Africa for 40 years and have just retired at 69. I have a B. A. Degree in English and Afrikaans and have taught both as a 2nd language and have a very good track record. I am still able and enthusiastic about teaching. I completed TEFL level 5 last year. I have a British passport and my daughter lives in England so I would love to relocate. Would I still be employable?

    1. Hi Cathy – Thanks for your message- It can be trickier for more mature teachers to gain employment once they reach 55-65, especially if they are newly qualified. This is because it’s difficult for employers to get a working visa approved by the government if you are near or over the retirement age of that country. Therefore, a permanent contract with a language school may not be an option. However, the course will also qualify you to teach online, or teach one-to-one private lessons which may be more appealing for you. If you are living abroad and put the word out there that you are a native English speaker willing to give private lessons, the students will usually follow! 😀

  6. Good day
    I have had extensive cross cultural experience teaching English as a TEFL teacher to university students, post graduates and variety of business English. (Corporate training)
    I am a qualified LLB (law) gradure with a passion to share my knowledge of the language with others, I have 120hrs on line TEFL passing with high marks with a UK based company. I am a young at heart, healthy, energetic and in good physical form 60 yr old would like ti know if there where opportunities for me?

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