One thing many people who move to Thailand to teach English worry about is how easy it will be to find a job. The other thing they’re concerned about, and always ask, is what are the best months to look for an English teaching job in Thailand, and which are the worst?
As a former English teacher who has lived in Thailand for more than 10 years and looked for jobs during many different months of the year, I can tell you without a doubt which months you will easily find a job, and which you might have to work a little harder (but, yes, you’ll still be employed by the end of them!)
The best months to find a teaching job in Thailand – There are two main periods of the year when it’s so easy to find an English teaching job in Thailand, you may very well end up turning several of them down. These are at the end of each semester, and before the next semester begins. These periods are currently starting mid-April to the middle of May and then again at the beginning of October until the beginning of November – as the first term usually begins sometime in early May and the second term in early November.
What that also means, however, is a month or so after each new semester begins will also be a great time to look for work. That’s because this is the time schools decide some teachers just aren’t working out and need to be replaced, while some teachers are realizing they don’t like the job they accepted or the school they’re working at and leave.
The worst months to find a teaching job in Thailand – While English teaching jobs can be found in any month of the year in Thailand as there are just so many of them, there are definitely some months that are worse than others for looking for work.
Months that are particularly bad times to look for full-time teaching work in Thailand are January, as it’s right after the New Year and the long holiday, and mid-March to mid-April right before the first semester begins. However, if you don’t mind doing some part-time work during March and April, many schools run summer camps and are always looking for teachers to work for a few days or a few weeks. If the camp is out of town, you may even get free room and food while you’re doing it.
The worst month to look for a teaching job in Thailand – There really is only one month that’s the absolute worst time to look for a teaching job and, having said that, it’s not impossible to find one then either. That month, of course, is December.
The reason why December is a poor month to job hunt in Thailand is not necessarily because of Christmas as, Thailand being a Buddhist country, most schools don’t get Christmas holidays, although some do. They do, however, break for New Year and that break is usually a week or longer. That means few schools are going to hire you in early December, only to have you get a holiday on the 28th December and not come back to work until around the 6th of January, especially if they have to pay you for it.
Plus, if you’re looking for a job in a language school, they’re not hiring in December either, as most of the country shuts down for the New Year holiday so few people are paying for extra classes at private language schools either.
Having said all this, however, Thailand is such an easy place to get an English teaching job, particularly if you are qualified (with a BA degree and a CELTA or TEFL), you can safely move here and not have to worry you’ll be unemployed for the next three months.
There really is always some type of job you will be able to get, even if it’s just to tide you over until your dream teaching job appears, of course.