You’re about to make a big life change to teach English in China. You probably have a lot of questions. Here are the most commonly asked questions we’ve received. If you have any additional questions, don’t hesitate to contact us at info@newlifeesl.com.

Do I need a degree in education?
What if I have no experience?
Do I need to speak Mandarin?
Why do you need a recent photograph with my resume?
Why do you need a scan of my passport?
Where is the location of the position? (City/Province)
Will I be required to travel between different school campuses?
If so, is transport provided or reimbursement for travel costs?
Is there a salary payment during holiday periods?
Is food included in the salary package?
What is the visa type offered in this position?
What are the minimum and maximum working hours allowed?
What is the notice period given to teachers at the end of the contract term for their contract to be renewed?
When a contract is renewed, are there salary increments or raises per contract renewal?
Is there potential to receive a bonus?
What are the ages groups that I will be required to teach in this position?
What is the average size of the students per classroom?
Is there a Chinese assistant or translator in the classroom?
Is accommodation provided?
What facilities are typically included in the apartment?
Is the apartment a shared accommodation or single?
Is it alright if I have tattoos?
How much holiday time would a teacher usually get during the year, and when would that fall?
Are western holidays honored?
Is there a high-season for hiring?
Do schools provide curriculum and other teaching materials?
Do you recommend any TEFL courses?
Do you recommend any VPN’s?
How long would it take to receive a package from back home?
Will I have to pay for utilities?
Do I receive medical insurance?
Are you able to put me in touch with previous/current English teachers?
Would I be able to start my application through you before I get a passport?

Do I need a degree in education?

Having a degree in education is NOT required for all positions. Some positions require having a degree in education, but most positions simply require a 4-year degree of any kind.

What if I have no experience?

Just like any job in the West, experience is preferred but NOT required. Many of our placed ESL teachers are brand new.

Do I need to speak Mandarin?

It is not a requirement at all to speak Mandarin. Most schools usually offer free Mandarin lessons from the Chinese staff.

Why do you need a recent photograph with my resume?

While this may seem strange to people from the Western world, in China it is customary to attach a photograph with a resume for any job you apply for – this goes for both locals and foreign workers. In addition, the schools want to make sure that you are presentable, as a lot of these schools are private schools that charge parents a significant amount of money to send their kids there. We won’t hold onto your picture longer than we need it.

Why do you need a scan of my passport?

We will need to see a scan or photo of the first page of your passport after we have determined you will be a good fit for the job. The school needs to see this to make sure that you can legally work in China and that they can obtain you a visa. Once we have all your documents, the school will be able to interview you. We will not keep any of your documents longer than we need them to get you a job.

For someone that hasn’t left the country before, it is understandable that you might feel nervous about providing a scan/photo of the first page of your passport. However, there is absolutely nothing malicious that can be done with such a scan. When you are overseas, you will be using your passport as a form of ID on a regular basis – as it is the only internationally recognized ID. In many countries, even renting a motorbike or staying in a hostel will require a copy of your passport.

What do you do with the documents you collect during this process?

We use the documents solely for the purpose of finding you a good job in China. Once that process is complete, we will not hold onto the documents. The information you provide is kept strictly confidential to New Life ESL. We will never sell or give away your information.

Where is the location of the position? (City/Province)

We have many partner schools throughout China with regular openings. You can state your preference, but you should be open to an adventure. Read about China’s top and most competitive cities here.

Will I be required to travel between different school campuses?

This depends on the school. If you’re strictly at a training center, you are only required to travel to the training center. If your school requires you to teach at public schools AND a training center, you will travel between the training center and public schools assigned to you.

If so, is transport provided or reimbursement for travel costs?

Some schools provide transport and some schools offer reimbursement with a valid taxi receipt from the driver.

Is there a salary payment during holiday periods?

This depends on your contract. Some schools will offer a percentage of your salary during holidays.

Is food included in the salary package?

Our current partners do not offer this option.

What is the visa type offered in this position?

For native English speakers, Z-visas are offered. If a school can hire those of a different nationality, a business visa is provided.

What are the minimum and maximum working hours allowed?

Schools require at least 25 hours of teaching as FULL time work. Some schools require 15 office hours which require you to simply be seen at your school.

What is the notice period given to teachers at the end of the contract term for their contract to be renewed?

You and the school will discuss this. You will be given more than enough time to decide if you want to stay or pursue another path. The schools will always provide a release letter that enables you to get an easy transition into your new visa, as long as you have fully completed your contract at a satisfactory level.

When a contract is renewed, are there salary increments or raises per contract renewal?

Depending on your work performance, yes. This is decided by your school.

Is there potential to receive a bonus?

If your school offers monthly bonuses based on behavior, you will get these along with your monthly salary.

What are the ages groups that I will be required to teach in this position?

Each school will differ. There are options for public schools( kindergarten, primary, middle school, high school), training centers, one-on-one students, business English courses etc. Read more about the different kinds of schools here.

What is the average size of the students per classroom?

This depends on the schools amount of students. Training centers can teach one-on-one or groups from 3-25 students. Public schools in China typically seat 50-60 students per class.

Is there a Chinese assistant or translator in the classroom?

For a training center, yes. For public schools, this depends on contracts between public schools and Chinese staff.

Is accommodation provided?

Accommodation or a housing allowance is provided. Depending on the contract offered, a school can allow as much as 2,500RMB towards housing.

What facilities are typically included in the apartment?

Kitchen, Western-style toilet, shower, completely furnished, bedroom, living-room etc.

Is the apartment a shared accommodation or single?

This depends on the contract offered.

Is it alright if I have tattoos?

As long as you come to class with a clean appearance and ready-to-work attitude, your tattoos shouldn’t be a serious issue.

How much holiday time would a teacher usually get during the year, and when would that fall?

There are several holidays in China. Two major holidays are summer and winter break, which can be as long as one month. There is no exact date for these holidays as China works around a lunar calendar. Your school will give you about a month notice prior to holidays.

Are western holidays honored?

Most schools will allow time off for major western holidays.

Is there a high-season for hiring?

For public schools, yes. You should be ready to commit to a position a month prior to the semester starting. For training centers, schools hire year-round, but you should again be able to commit to a position at least one month prior to starting for the sake of visa purposes.

Do schools provide curriculum and other teaching materials?

Yes, your school will provide you with all of the curriculum and materials needed to have a successful class. You will never have to decide what to teach a specific age group, as the books are already provided and you will strictly teach what is in the books.

Do you recommend any TEFL courses?

Yes, we’ve recently established a partnership that you can read more about here.

Do you recommend any VPN’s?

Yes, strongly recommend having a VPN in China. You can read more about which VPN we suggest here.

How long would it take to receive a package from back home?

Shipping times vary depending on the city tier. Allow two weeks to one month to receive or send something back home.

Will I have to pay for utilities?

Yes, you will be required to pay for basic utilities. Some schools may cover one expense and leave you responsible for the rest. Utilities are roughly 25% of the cost they are back home.

Do I receive medical/travel insurance?

If you’re given a z-visa, you will receive insurance through the government. Health expenses are extremely low.

Are you able to put me in touch with previous/current English teachers?

We recommend asking the school to speak to a previously/currently employed teacher or checking out our YouTube and Facebook testimonials and reviews.

Would I be able to start my application through you before I get a passport?

Yes, you can apply before you’ve obtained a passport, but you will need to get a passport immediately so schools can process your visa.

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