Teach English in Ecuador

a world of opportunities

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Kirsten Colquhoun
August 23, 2023

Contents

Introduction
Why teach in Ecuador
Best Places
How do I qualify
Types of jobs
Average salary
Common benefits
Cost of living
Saving opportunities
Life and culture

Changing careers can be daunting. Moving to a new country can be scary. But it can also be life-changing in the most amazing way. Teaching English in Ecuador could be the adventure you have been looking for.

Why start teaching English in Ecuador?

So what’s special about Ecuador? 

Ecuador is a beautiful country with a diverse range of landscapes, from the Amazon Rainforest to the Andean mountains and the Galapagos Islands – the place that inspired Darwin’s Theory of Evolution. Wonders such as the giant tortoises and the world’s only marine Iguanas await those who make the short plane ride to the islands. 

Ecuador is a Spanish-speaking country, which means that teaching English here can be an excellent way to improve your Spanish language skills

The demand for English teachers in Ecuador is high, and there are many Ecuador expat job opportunities available.

If you love hiking and the great outdoors, Ecuador is for you. 

Start your teaching course journey with a certified TEFL course provider.

Best places for English teaching jobs in Ecuador

From mountain towns to coastal villages to laid-back cities, Ecuador suits all types of TEFL teachers. 

Quito

The capital city

The capital of Ecuador is a popular destination for English teachers. The city is located in the Andes Mountains and has a rich cultural heritage. There are many language schools in Quito that offer English teaching positions, and the city has a large expat community, which means that there are opportunities for private tutoring as well. 

Guayaquil

For Business English teachers

Guayaquil is the largest city in Ecuador and is located on the coast. The city has a large port and is a hub for business and trade. There are many language schools and private companies in Guayaquil that offer English teaching positions, and the city has a lively nightlife and a rich cultural scene.

Cuenca 

For the laid-back teacher

Cuenca is a smaller city located in the Andean mountains. It has a charming historic centre and a laid-back lifestyle. There are several language schools and private companies in Cuenca that offer English teaching positions, and the city has a growing expat community.

How do I qualify to teach English in Ecuador?

Visa requirements 

You need a working visa called a Professional visa to teach English in Ecuador. 

TEFL certification

Most TEFL jobs in Ecuador require a TEFL certification. Having a basic Level 3 TEFL certification will suffice. But, if you want to bump up your chances of getting a better-paying job we recommend the Level 5 Combined TEFL course as this includes 10 hours of in-class teaching practice.

Bachelor’s degree

A Bachelor’s degree is needed to apply for a Professional visa to work in Ecuador. Your degree must be registered with the Secretariat of Higher Education, Science, Technology and Innovation (SENESCYT). 

Experience

While not always required, having prior teaching experience can land you a better job. 

Start-up capital 

Moving to another country requires some start-up capital to cover your costs until your first salary lands in your bank balance. What exactly do we mean? Let’s look at start-up costs in Ecuador in more detail:

  • Accommodation: If accommodation is not provided by your employer or included in your salary, you’ll need the first month’s rent and a security deposit.
  • TEFL certification: A TEFL course can cost between $100 and $500, depending on the length and level of the course and the course provider. 
  • Document fees: Any costs related to certifying and notarising your degree and TEFL certificate.
  • Flight ticket: Variable. 
  •  Visa application: The cost of getting a visa is subject to your home country. You can expect to pay around $450 for a Professional visa. 
  • Living expenses: You will need one month’s worth of start-up capital of about $500 to live off until your first paycheque.

Types of English teaching jobs in Ecuador

Anything goes when it comes to English teaching jobs in Ecuador. There’s a little bit of everything here!

Public schools

We suggest applying to a public school if you are a teaching novice. Why? These positions are not competitive, with lower application standards. On the downside, the pay isn’t that good, class sizes are larger and the students are not that motivated. These are not ideal conditions, but it’s a great way to start your teaching career.

International schools

Teaching at these schools is ideal for you if you have a Bachelor’s degree and teaching experience. The pay is higher and students are more motivated.

Universities

Teaching at English-speaking universities is the best option. The pay is much higher and the benefits are good. 

Language schools 

These schools are the most popular choice for TEFL teachers, as experience is not usually needed. Unfortunately, the salaries aren’t as high as in other jobs.

Private tutoring

Teaching private lessons is a great way to earn extra cash money. Parents and their children are very interested in increasing their English speaking skills.

Volunteer programs

Volunteering is a good choice if you have a good level of Spanish fluency and are on a philanthropic mission. Check out The TEFL Academy’s volunteering page to find out if there’s a program suited to you.

Online teaching

Teaching English online is a convenient way of earning some extra cash. A Professional visa allows you to work as a digital nomad in Ecuador, which means you could be teaching in the morning and hiking up a volcano in the afternoon!

What is the average teaching salary in Ecuador?

  • On average, English teachers in Ecuador can expect to earn between $600 and $1,100 a month
  • Teachers can charge $3 – $8 an hour for private lessons. 
  • Online teaching rates are generally $10 – $30 an hour.

What are the common benefits for TEFL jobs in Ecuador?

TEFL jobs in Ecuador rarely come with benefits. Let’s take a look at some of the common benefits that do and don’t come with teaching English in Ecuador: 

Accommodation: Jobs will rarely provide any type of housing for their teachers except for English-speaking universities, and some volunteer positions.

Health insurance: Some language schools offer to provide health insurance. This can be a great benefit, as healthcare costs can be high in Ecuador. 

Paid vacation time: Many schools offer paid vacation time, which allows you to explore Ecuador and neighbouring countries during your time off.

What's the cost of living in Ecuador?

The cost of living varies depending on the location, but in general, housing and transportation are affordable, and food is relatively inexpensive.

Accommodation

  • One-bedroom apartment in city centre: $350
  • One-bedroom apartment outside city centre: $250

Utilities

  • Gas, water, electricity: $50

Food and groceries

  • Monthly shop: $500
  • Meal at an inexpensive restaurant: $3.50

Internet

  • Unlimited: $40

Transport 

  • Monthly pass: $19
  • One-way trip (local transport): $0.50

Entertainment

  • Gym, cinema, going out: $200

Is it possible to save as an English teacher in Ecuador?

One of the biggest expenses in Ecuador is housing, so sharing an apartment is pretty common. This can significantly reduce your monthly expenses, allowing you to save more money.

Local markets and street vendors offer fresh produce at very affordable prices, and many restaurants offer set menu options that are inexpensive. Cooking at home is also a great way to save money, as groceries are relatively cheap.

Transportation in Ecuador is affordable, with buses and taxis being the main modes of transportation. Remember to haggle with taxi drivers, as they tend to overcharge foreigners.

As for entertainment, there are plenty of affordable options in Ecuador. Museums and art galleries often have free admission, and there are many parks and public spaces to explore. 

Of course, if you are able to take on extra work as a private tutor or online English teacher, your opportunity for saving will increase.

What's it like to live and work in Ecuador?

  • Living and teaching in an exotic place like Ecuador sounds like a dream, but of course, like any job, having an Ecuador expat job can have its challenges.
  • Some schools may require long hours.
  • The language barrier can be difficult to overcome at first, but this is a great way to improve your Spanish. 
  • Ecuador has a higher crime rate than other countries, so always be on alert when out and about.
  • In the classroom, your students are likely to be energetic and lively.

Are you ready to start teaching English in Ecuador?

Start your teaching course journey with a certified TEFL course provider.

Contents

Changing careers can be daunting. Moving to a new country can be scary. But it can also be life-changing in the most amazing way. Teaching English in Ecuador could be the adventure you have been looking for.

Why start teaching English in Ecuador?

So what’s special about Ecuador? 

Ecuador is a beautiful country with a diverse range of landscapes, from the Amazon Rainforest to the Andean mountains and the Galapagos Islands – the place that inspired Darwin’s Theory of Evolution. Wonders such as the giant tortoises and the world’s only marine Iguanas await those who make the short plane ride to the islands. 

Ecuador is a Spanish-speaking country, which means that teaching English here can be an excellent way to improve your Spanish language skills

The demand for English teachers in Ecuador is high, and there are many Ecuador expat job opportunities available.

If you love hiking and the great outdoors, Ecuador is for you. 

Start your teaching course journey with a certified TEFL course provider.

Best places for English teaching jobs in Ecuador

From mountain towns to coastal villages to laid-back cities, Ecuador suits all types of TEFL teachers. 

Quito

The capital city

The capital of Ecuador is a popular destination for English teachers. The city is located in the Andes Mountains and has a rich cultural heritage. There are many language schools in Quito that offer English teaching positions, and the city has a large expat community, which means that there are opportunities for private tutoring as well. 

Guayaquil

For Business English teachers

Guayaquil is the largest city in Ecuador and is located on the coast. The city has a large port and is a hub for business and trade. There are many language schools and private companies in Guayaquil that offer English teaching positions, and the city has a lively nightlife and a rich cultural scene.

Cuenca 

For the laid-back teacher

Cuenca is a smaller city located in the Andean mountains. It has a charming historic centre and a laid-back lifestyle. There are several language schools and private companies in Cuenca that offer English teaching positions, and the city has a growing expat community.

How do I qualify to teach English in Ecuador?

Visa requirements 

You need a working visa called a Professional visa to teach English in Ecuador. 

TEFL certification

Most TEFL jobs in Ecuador require a TEFL certification. Having a basic Level 3 TEFL certification will suffice. But, if you want to bump up your chances of getting a better-paying job we recommend the Level 5 Combined TEFL course as this includes 10 hours of in-class teaching practice.

Bachelor’s degree

A Bachelor’s degree is needed to apply for a Professional visa to work in Ecuador. Your degree must be registered with the Secretariat of Higher Education, Science, Technology and Innovation (SENESCYT). 

Experience

While not always required, having prior teaching experience can land you a better job. 

Start-up capital 

Moving to another country requires some start-up capital to cover your costs until your first salary lands in your bank balance. What exactly do we mean? Let’s look at start-up costs in Ecuador in more detail:

  • Accommodation: If accommodation is not provided by your employer or included in your salary, you’ll need the first month’s rent and a security deposit.
  • TEFL certification: A TEFL course can cost between $100 and $500, depending on the length and level of the course and the course provider. 
  • Document fees: Any costs related to certifying and notarising your degree and TEFL certificate.
  • Flight ticket: Variable. 
  •  Visa application: The cost of getting a visa is subject to your home country. You can expect to pay around $450 for a Professional visa. 
  • Living expenses: You will need one month’s worth of start-up capital of about $500 to live off until your first paycheque.

Types of English teaching jobs in Ecuador

Anything goes when it comes to English teaching jobs in Ecuador. There’s a little bit of everything here!

Public schools

We suggest applying to a public school if you are a teaching novice. Why? These positions are not competitive, with lower application standards. On the downside, the pay isn’t that good, class sizes are larger and the students are not that motivated. These are not ideal conditions, but it’s a great way to start your teaching career.

International schools

Teaching at these schools is ideal for you if you have a Bachelor’s degree and teaching experience. The pay is higher and students are more motivated.

Universities

Teaching at English-speaking universities is the best option. The pay is much higher and the benefits are good. 

Language schools 

These schools are the most popular choice for TEFL teachers, as experience is not usually needed. Unfortunately, the salaries aren’t as high as in other jobs.

Private tutoring

Teaching private lessons is a great way to earn extra cash money. Parents and their children are very interested in increasing their English speaking skills.

Volunteer programs

Volunteering is a good choice if you have a good level of Spanish fluency and are on a philanthropic mission. Check out The TEFL Academy’s volunteering page to find out if there’s a program suited to you.

Online teaching

Teaching English online is a convenient way of earning some extra cash. A Professional visa allows you to work as a digital nomad in Ecuador, which means you could be teaching in the morning and hiking up a volcano in the afternoon!

What is the average teaching salary in Ecuador?

  • On average, English teachers in Ecuador can expect to earn between $600 and $1,100 a month
  • Teachers can charge $3 – $8 an hour for private lessons. 
  • Online teaching rates are generally $10 – $30 an hour.

What are the common benefits for TEFL jobs in Ecuador?

TEFL jobs in Ecuador rarely come with benefits. Let’s take a look at some of the common benefits that do and don’t come with teaching English in Ecuador: 

Accommodation: Jobs will rarely provide any type of housing for their teachers except for English-speaking universities, and some volunteer positions.

Health insurance: Some language schools offer to provide health insurance. This can be a great benefit, as healthcare costs can be high in Ecuador. 

Paid vacation time: Many schools offer paid vacation time, which allows you to explore Ecuador and neighbouring countries during your time off.

What's the cost of living in Ecuador?

The cost of living varies depending on the location, but in general, housing and transportation are affordable, and food is relatively inexpensive.

Accommodation

  • One-bedroom apartment in city centre: $350
  • One-bedroom apartment outside city centre: $250

Utilities

  • Gas, water, electricity: $50

Food and groceries

  • Monthly shop: $500
  • Meal at an inexpensive restaurant: $3.50

Internet

  • Unlimited: $40

Transport 

  • Monthly pass: $19
  • One-way trip (local transport): $0.50

Entertainment

  • Gym, cinema, going out: $200

Is it possible to save as an English teacher in Ecuador?

One of the biggest expenses in Ecuador is housing, so sharing an apartment is pretty common. This can significantly reduce your monthly expenses, allowing you to save more money.

Local markets and street vendors offer fresh produce at very affordable prices, and many restaurants offer set menu options that are inexpensive. Cooking at home is also a great way to save money, as groceries are relatively cheap.

Transportation in Ecuador is affordable, with buses and taxis being the main modes of transportation. Remember to haggle with taxi drivers, as they tend to overcharge foreigners.

As for entertainment, there are plenty of affordable options in Ecuador. Museums and art galleries often have free admission, and there are many parks and public spaces to explore. 

Of course, if you are able to take on extra work as a private tutor or online English teacher, your opportunity for saving will increase.

What's it like to live and work in Ecuador?

  • Living and teaching in an exotic place like Ecuador sounds like a dream, but of course, like any job, having an Ecuador expat job can have its challenges.
  • Some schools may require long hours.
  • The language barrier can be difficult to overcome at first, but this is a great way to improve your Spanish. 
  • Ecuador has a higher crime rate than other countries, so always be on alert when out and about.
  • In the classroom, your students are likely to be energetic and lively.

Are you ready to start teaching English in Ecuador?

Start your teaching course journey with a certified TEFL course provider.

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