Greece is the perfect place for a TEFL courses abroad because the demand for high quality native English speaking teachers is so high! Greece is considered to be one of the top TEFL job markets in the world. Getting TEFL certified in Greece, and gaining teaching experience, makes finding a teaching job in Greece much easier. TEFL programs in Greece ensure greater opportunities for teaching placement after certification, as there are many frontistirias (private language schools) throughout Greece. From history to architecture, Greece has a lot to offer program participants outside of their TEFL courses.
Athens, Crete, and Thessaloniki are the most popular destinations for TEFL programs in Greece. Over 3,000 years old, the Greek capital of Athens has a ton of private language schools, so there are also many TEFL programs offered in Athens, that can easily transition to a teaching placement quickly. An important European financial hub, even with its recent struggles, the infrastructure of Athens (thanks in part to the Olympics) provides teachers with a secure environment. With a solid transportation system and beaches nearby, TEFL programs in Athens make it easy for teachers to explore the rest of Greece and enjoy their free time.
Crete, an island of Greece, runs more like a distinct country in many ways. Characterized by a contrasting landscape from the beaches and the sea, to mountains, caves, and gorges, the island also boasts not only agricultural communities, but also a cosmopolitan center. In Crete, the old city of Chania or Hania is a common destination for TEFL programs in Crete. Though a tourist destination as well, there are opportunities to teach English in small villages where the Cretan dialect is still spoken. And because of tourism, many locals are looking to improve their English skills so private language schools are often looking to hire English teachers.
Thessaloniki is a walkable city that is home to many international students and considered Greece’s cultural capital. With Byzantine churches, and Roman, Ottoman, and Muslim style architecture, Greece’s second largest city provides TEFL programs where participants will have a chance to dig deep into history within a big city environment.
If you’d prefer to get away to rural areas of Greece, like the island of Los in the Cyclades, there are TEFL programs there too. No matter where participants decide to complete their TEFL certification in Greece, they will have the chance to visit the Acropolis in Athens, explore the Palace of Knossos in Crete, and travel to the Ottoman monuments in Thessaloniki.
Courses & Programs
Both onsite and online TEFL certification courses are available in Greece. Common components that are required to complete TEFL certification include teaching practice, lesson preparation, classroom management, and observation time with experienced teachers. Most TEFL programs in Greece require native English proficiency and a high school diploma, or in many cases a Bachelor’s degree. As a result, almost TEFL courses in Greece will provide job placement assistance once certification is completed.
It can take as little as 20 hours during one weekend to get an entry level TEFL certificate if you’re looking for a quick program option. However, to follow the most common and popular path, opt for TEFL programs in Greece that cover at least 120 hours. TEFL courses can be spread out over four weeks for full-time students or 12 weeks for part-time students. Opting for a longer more intensive program will ensure your certification is internationally recognized as well.
The best time to start taking TEFL courses in Greece is in the Spring, so you will have time to finish the course and be ready to begin interviewing for teaching jobs in Greece during peak hiring season, and well before everyone goes on vacation. In most cases, teaching jobs in Greece include a year contract at one of the hundreds of privates schools in Greece (either in Athens or in Crete most often).
Salaries & Costs
TEFL certification costs can range anywhere from $1,500 to $2,000, depending on the specific program, hours, and benefits included. This cost can quickly be offset once you are TEFL certified however, as a teacher’s salary in Greece can be from $600 to $1,500a month, and even higher for individuals who provide private English tutoring or lessons on the side.
The cost of living in Greece is quite affordable by EU standards, but teachers should not expect to be living frivolously at the same time. The cost of living on the island of Crete, or other smaller islands, will also generally be higher than mainland Greece. Individuals earning a TEFL certificate in Greece should budget around $1,000 to $1,500 a month for accommodation and food costs. An average meal in Greece runs around $10 to $15 and a coffee around $5 USD.
Accommodations & Visas
Many TEFL programs in Greece will help students arrange accommodations or provide them entirely. In most cases, TEFL students can expect to stay in apartments, hostels, or shared living spaces.
If you come from an EU Member-State or the USA you will not need a visa to complete TEFL courses in Greece for up to 90 days. However, to participate in a TEFL program (or teach abroad in Greece long-term) for longer than three months, you will need to obtain a work visa. You will need go to your local consulate or Greek embassy to apply for the visa (find one nearest you on GoAbroad’s Greek Embassy Directory). It is important that you have a valid passport and several other required documents, like tax forms and insurance, for the application process.
GoAbroad Insider Tips
The job market for teachers with TEFL certificates in Greece is one of the best in the world.
Lifetime job placement assistance is available through certain TEFL providers, and some even guarantee 100 percent job placement.
While the pay isn’t always fantastic, teaching jobs in Greece are abundant, and with long summers and great nightlife, teachers can thoroughly enjoy their time outside the classroom.
The healthcare system in Greece is known for not being the greatest, so it’s vital to have insurance before arriving.
Carrying cash is key. Large establishments, like hotels, will accept cards, but the majority of locations, including restaurants, will require payment in cash.
Teaching in private language schools in Greece is the main option for foreigners, so if you are looking for a different kind of teaching experience this is an important element to consider.