Phuket is the largest Thai island and is often called the most beautiful. Its stunning beaches, varied diet, and eager-to-learn students make it an ideal place to teach abroad. From diving to the famous full moon parties, Phuket is touristy enough that it is full of things to do and see — yet you’ll never be far away from a typical welcoming Thai smile and a plate of Pad Thai! English is gaining popularity as a business and also leisure language, so there’s never been a better time to teach abroad in Phuket.
Popular Teaching Jobs in Phuket
Phuket is a great place for foreigners to teach abroad, as their native accents are highly in demand. Whether you would rather assist little ones with their ABC’s or like the idea of helping adults improve, there are jobs out there for every level.
Public Schools, Universities, & Tutoring Centers. Teaching positions are available in language academies, universities, and public schools. Universities offer decent salaries, require a degree, and they don’t offer as many hours. Public schools offer decent hours and salaries, and they also offer training, but the class sizes are usually larger, and you will likely need a degree. If you don’t have a degree, the best option is to teach in a language school, but the hours aren’t usually regular.
Short Term vs. Long Term Teaching Jobs. The two semesters start in May and November with breaks in March, April, and October, and public institutions typically hire during the breaks. You could find programs for one semester or for the full year. There are teaching positions available in Phuket with students of all age groups. A typical school day in Thailand begins at 8.30 a.m. and finishes at 3.30 p.m. On average, a teacher teaches 18-20 hours a week.
Teaching English vs. Teaching Other Subjects. If you’re looking to teach English in Phuket, this is the place; English levels are generally very low away from the major Thai cities, yet enthusiasm to learn is high. English-language media is becoming increasingly popular in Thailand, and the high levels of tourism the country receives means that many people are keen to improve their English to be able to apply for a wider range of jobs. Other jobs are available in teaching primary schools, but they’re harder to find than English teaching positions.
Life for Teachers in Phuket
When you’re teaching in Phuket, you’ll love the natural beauty, warm climate, and delicious seafood that make it an absolutely idyllic place to live. Phuket is a rich area of Thailand, meaning visitors are never short of things to do.
In free time, teachers can relax on the beaches, indulge in watersports, hire bikes to explore the countryside, or enjoy the shopping areas and nightlife of Patong. Phuket is also full of impressive natural features, like the sheer cliff face islands in Phang Nga Bay, which can be explored by boat. For keen photographers, Promthep Cape is said to be the most beautiful place in the world to watch a sunset.
Public transport in Phuket is dominated by the local tuk-tuks. In terms of food, Phuket is known for its seafood, which is guaranteed to be fresh and plentiful thanks to its enormous coastline. There are also street stalls on every corner, selling everything from meat skewers to noodles to pancakes. The best stalls for sanitation and flavor are the ones that cook the food in front of you. Definitely no chance of ever going hungry in Phuket!
GoAbroad Insider Tips
When searching for jobs, be aware of how conscious Thais are of appearances; looking smart and professional goes a long way toward getting you hired, whereas if you show up looking like a tourist, you could have all the qualifications in the world and still not find a job.
Don’t forget Thailand has its own unique traditions and etiquette. Thai people show a great deal of respect firstly to Buddha and secondly to their King; everyone is expected to stand during the national anthem, which is played in all manner of public events (including cinemas!) You will also be expected to remove your shoes in any temple containing a statue of Buddha, so avoid wearing your fanciest heels or stinky socks.
When idealizing teaching abroad, there tend to be images of enthusiastic children, friendly locals, white-sand beaches, new friends, and endless sunshine. Teaching abroad in Phuket may be as close to this dream as it is possible to get, so pack a dictionary, pair of flip flops, and start researching teaching placements!