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Kuwait Job Listings

Kuwait is an oil-rich emirate in the Persian Gulf. Formerly a British protectorate, its culture is closer to Bahrain than to its conservative neighbour Saudi Arabia. Out of a population of almost 4.2 million, nearly 3 million are expats. However, much of its heritage survives, including Bedouin textiles and handicrafts. Kuwait is almost the size of Wales, but away from the coastline it is nearly all flat desert plains.

Kuwait is almost a city-state – its capital, the cosmopolitan Kuwait City, is the only large town. It’s on the coast, and its fresh sea breezes used to attract the Bedouin, who would come to escape from droughts in one of the driest deserts on earth. The city’s most famous buildings, and a symbol of the nation, are the Kuwait Towers. These have a very Middle Eastern flavour, topped by their distinctive turquoise ‘sequins’. The tallest tower, 187 m in height, has a revolving observation deck as well as a giant pod holding around four million litres of water. The city also has lively souks (markets), restaurants and extravagant shopping malls, as well as world-class museums and perfectly manicured beaches.

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Other resorts stretch along the coast, including the lovely Ras al-Zour. Just outside Kuwait City is Fahaheel, which has an especially atmospheric fish souk and a harbour full of dhows (traditional Arabic sailing boats). Apart from water sports, and of course football, Kuwaitis enjoy falconry, as well as camel and horse racing; Arabian horses are thought to be among the finest in the world. And if you’re lucky you might be able to join locals as they enjoy one of their favourite customs – leaving the city to camp out under the desert skies.

There’s good demand for ESL in Kuwait, both from locals and expat workers from various other countries looking to improve their English. Because of the huge expat community, English is required by anybody working not just in tourism, but also many other services, such as hospitals. Berlitz, Linguarama and other international EFL schools have branches in Kuwait. You should try to secure a post before you set off to the country, and you can expect the interview and visa processes to take 1 to 3 months. TEFL salaries are not as high as in other Gulf states and it’s difficult to save, but you can certainly make enough to have a comfortable lifestyle, and some contracts help with housing and other costs. There’s also the possibility to ‘moonlight’ by offering private ESL lessons – you can look for advertisements for tutors in local newspapers, the yellow pages and on notice boards in clubs and sporting institutions, or post advertisements yourself. EFL teachers in Kuwait should show sensitivity towards Islamic traditions.

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