This is how much South Africans can earn teaching English in China

South Africans who have completed a TEFL course (Teach English as a Foreign Language), can make serious money teaching in China.

According to data provided to BusinessTech by Global Teacher Recruitment, TEFL teachers can earn anywhere between R30,000 – R45,000 a month depending on where they work and who they teach.

Notably, the data shows that expats often earn higher salaries in smaller and lesser-known cities (Tier 3) in China, compared to more popular Tier 1 cities such as Shenzhen or Guangzhou.

You can find a breakdown of the different courses across multiple Chinese cities below.


Tier 1 cities

Shenzhen 

  • Degree requirement: Bachelor’s degree in any discipline
  • Typical contract length: 12 months with the option to extend
  • Typical students: Business professionals, graduate students
  • Average monthly cost of living per single person: 6,862.16 ¥ (R14,139)
  • Average monthly salary: 18,000 ¥ – 20,000 ¥ (R37,095 – R41,299)

Guangzhou

  • Degree requirement: Bachelor’s degree in any discipline
  • Typical contract length: 12 months with the option to extend
  • Typical students: Business professionals, graduate students
  • Average monthly cost of living per single person: 5,796 ¥ (R 11,735)
  • Average monthly salary: 18,000 ¥ – 20,000 ¥ (R37,095 – R41,299)

Tier 2 cities

Hangzhou

  • Degree requirement: Bachelor’s degree in any discipline
  • Typical contract length: 12 months with the option to extend
  • Typical students: Business professionals, graduate students
  • Average monthly salary: 16,000 ¥ – 18,000 ¥ (R32,990 – R37,095)

Guiyang

  • Degree requirement: Bachelor’s degree in any discipline
  • Typical contract length: 12 months with the option to extend
  • Typical students: Business professionals, graduate students
  • Average monthly salary: 17,000 ¥ (R34,535)

Tier 3 cities

Huizhou

  • Degree requirement: Bachelor’s degree in any discipline
  • Typical contract length: 12 months with the option to extend
  • Typical students: Business professionals, graduate students
  • Average monthly salary: 18,000 ¥ – 22,000 ¥ (R37,095 – R44,683)

Zhongshan

  • Degree requirement: Bachelor’s degree in any discipline
  • Typical contract length: 12 months with the option to extend
  • Typical students: Business professionals, graduate students
  • Average monthly salary: 18,000 ¥ – 22,000 ¥ (R37,095 – R44,683)

Chinese special administrative region

Hong Kong

Hong Kong

  • Degree requirement: Bachelor’s degree in any discipline
  • Typical contract length: 12 months with the option to extend
  • Typical students: Business professionals, graduate students
  • Average monthly salary: 23,000 HK$ – 24,000 HK$ (R41,036 – R42,820)

Macau

  • Degree requirement: Bachelor’s degree in any discipline
  • Typical contract length: 12 months with the option to extend
  • Typical students: Business professionals, graduate students
  • Average monthly salary: 18,000 MOP – 22,000 MOP (R31,159 – R38,080)

Read: South Africa in talks to get visa-free access to New Zealand and other countries

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This is how much South Africans can earn teaching English in China