Leave Your Comfort Zone

How to be the Richest Teacher in China

 

This is a follow-up to my original blog post about How to save US $35,000 in a year teaching English in China.

If you haven't read that post, here's the LINK. 

Since I published that blog post, I received a lot of messages asking for clarification; specifically on the salary part. Readers wanted to know how to earn that kind of cash in a year. So here it is.

It's true that to save a lot of money, first you need to make a lot of money. But how can you do that when you've been offered a job that pays only US $20,000 a year. Well, living in China is cheap so even if you don't do any extra work, you can easily save 10k a year. If this is what you want, stop reading now and go watch something on Netflix. Because now I'm gonna give you the real real breakdown.

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Earn US $65,000 a year, teaching English in China.

You're full of shit, this can't be real, I am currently in China and I don't make that kinda money, clickbait clickbait clickbait, are you fuckin' serious! 

These are few of the messages I received as soon as I published my initial post about How to save US $35,000 in a year teaching English in China.

So I felt I had to reveal the truth and provide an honest breakdown about how you can realistically make that kind of money. So here we go.

Disclaimer: I'll be very honest here. For the majority of the teachers in China, these numbers are not real. It takes perseverance, a lot of hard work, and luck to make this kind of money. However, it is possible. 

Monthly salaries* at schools across China

*salary amounts are in Chinese Yuan ¥

As you can see, jobs at international schools in China are quite lucrative but they only hire licensed teachers, which means you have to be qualified to teach within your own home state, province, or region's public school system. If you are a licensed teacher you can easily make US $65,000 a year with only one job.

Public school jobs don't pay as much as international schools, however, the workload is less. On average, you will have 15 teaching hours (15 x 40-minute classes) a week, and sometimes no office hours. Salaries depend on the location of your school. For example, if you're a new teacher in Shenzhen, you can expect to make between 13,000¥ to 15,000¥ a month. But if you accept a job in a Beijing public school, you can easily get 19,000¥ a month (that's US $1000 more than other cities).

Then there are training centers. These institutions are similar to the after-school hagwans in South Korea. The work starts in late afternoon. They pay more than public schools, but the hours are long. On average, you will have 20 teaching hours (20 x 40-minute classes or 10 x 90-minute classes) a week, plus office hours. In comparison to public school workload, this is hard work.

Salary options

Public school jobs                              pay 13,000¥ to 19,000¥

Training center jobs                          pay 16,000¥ to 20,000¥

International school jobs                  pay 25,000¥ to 35,000¥ 

Private lessons                                  300¥ to 500¥ per hour

Hope this breakdown gives you an idea of how much you can make when you come to China to teach English. You can always mix and match based on your availability and your financial goals.

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So the trick is to maximize your earnings.

There are many ways to achieve that but the easiest way is to have two jobs. It's simple as that. You can work at a public school during the day and work at a training center in the evenings and on the weekends.

First, you need to set a goal - not how much you want to make but how much you want to save. Once you have that number, you will know how much you need to make. In my case, I wanted to save US $35,000 so I figured out a way to make US $65,000 because my expenses were high.

Disclaimer: I'll be very honest here. For the majority of the teachers in China, these numbers are not real. It takes perseverance, a lot of hard work, and luck to make this kind of money. However, it is possible. 

Let's take two teachers from two different cities and see how they can earn US $65,000 in a year teaching English in China.

Beijing

Public school salary (19k x 10 months)   = 190,000¥ Training center (16k x 12 months)           = 192,000¥ Summer camps (19k x 2 months)             =   38,000¥ Annual bonus (public school)                   =     8,000¥ Total earnings in one year                      = 428,000¥

428,000¥ = US $65,846*

* Exchange rate - US $1 = 6.5¥

 

Shenzhen

Public school salary (15k x 10 months)   = 150,000¥ Training center (18k x 12 months)           = 216,000¥ Summer camps (12.5k x 4 camps)            =   50,000¥ Annual bonus (public school)                   =     8,000¥ Total earnings in one year                      = 424,000¥

424,000¥ = US $65,230*

* Exchange rate - US $1 = 6.5¥

Yes, it's a lot of work and yes it's not for everyone. You need to decide what kind of lifestyle you want and what your priorities are. At the end of the day, it's not really about how much you can make but how much you can save. 

Please let me know if you need any other information or further clarification. I would love to help.