For many Expats in Italy finding a job can be challenging, particularly due to the language barrier. This means that if you don’t already have a remote job and are wondering what kind of work you can do in Italy, despite not knowing Italian, you can actually teach English!
Of course, if you can speak Italian it’s a major bonus, however, many Expats, including Americans and other Westerners, find decently paid and satisfying work teaching English as a foreign language in Italy.
Why Teach English in Italy?
Italy is one of the most beautiful countries that you could find yourself in with a fantastically friendly and welcoming culture, so if you can work as a teacher you’ll be able to enjoy the superb culture and sightseeing opportunities while giving back to the local community as well.
You can teach English almost anywhere in Italy, so whether you want to live in the bustling cities or the relaxed countryside you can find a job that suits your ideal lifestyle. Being an English teacher, also known as being a TEFL teacher, is a great opportunity that is stable, appreciated and enjoyable.
- An amazing way to see new places.
- The perfect way to immerse yourself in Italian culture, even if you don’t speak the local language!
- Great way to meet local people and become a valued member of the community.
- Receive a regular paycheck as well as health insurance.
- You can make a massive difference to the lives of your students.
- No matter what stage in your career you are at, teaching English in a foreign country looks good on your Resume.
Most people are only lucky enough to visit Italy on a vacation, however if you teach English in the country you can make the ideal holiday a permanent lifestyle choice! The chances are, if you’re reading this, that you have the linguistic skills to teach English; and provided that you have a friendly, encouraging and considerate personality then teaching is an ideal job for you!
What’s The Salary for an English Teacher in Italy?
If you’re working as an English teacher in Italy you can enjoy a decent standard of living. The pay is fairly good and the local living costs are surprisingly low. This means that you can enjoy experiences, restaurants and a lifestyle that you might not be used to at home!
The average pay for an English language teacher in Italy ranges from approximately $1000-$2000 per month. The exact salary that you receive will depend on your past experience and the quality of your educational skills.
If you have never taught before then you will have to work your way up through the industry, however if you’ve already taught English as a foreign language then you can expect to easily earn up to $30,000 per year in private school. That may not seem like an enormous salary in the United States, but in Italy that money goes a lot further!
The salaries in schools are fairly fixed but if you are entrepreneurial then you can significantly increase your salary by teaching English to working professionals. The market is much smaller but the wages can be huge. In Europe, most high level business persons are expected to speak fluent English which means that you can teach lawyers, entrepreneurs, scientists and government officials English on a part time basis. You will have to know the ‘lingo’ and ‘jargon’ of their particular profession, but if so you can then you can leverage a salary of well over $50,000 a year in Italy!
What Types of Teaching Jobs Are There In Italy?
There are several main ways that you can teach English in Italy. Each route to teaching has its own benefits and what you decide to do will depend on where you want to live and the intensity of the work life that you want to take on.
Private Language Schools and Institutes.
The majority of English teachers jobs for Expats are in private language schools and institutions. There are also jobs which are available in the public (state) schools however most of these are usually taken by bilingual teachers for cultural and social reasons. This means that your best chance of landing a job in Italy as a teacher is through a private school.
There are several types of private institutions that you can work in. Some focus on teaching younger, school age, students while others provide services for adults in industry, consulting and even diplomacy! Your pay will vary depending on the institution that you work in as will your time table. Many Expat teachers of English in Italy only work a 20 hour week and yet live a fantastic quality of life in one of the most desirable countries on Earth!
Most of the adult classes in private institutions are made up of people in business who are very keen to learn and take their classes very seriously. These are the easiest people to teach however, you can also teach younger students throughout the year who study English outside of the mandatory school hours. There are private boarding schools, day schools, language centers and business focused institutions that teach English in the workplace of professionals.
Summer Camp Schools.
There are many summer camps in Italy that combine enjoyable activities with English classes that are hugely popular with people from all over the world – with students from everywhere from Japan to more local countries in Europe! You’ll have to have an active personality because working in summer camps is a full time job. You will have to work with children of all ages, from young students of 5 years up to 18. Some teachers do specialize in various age ranges however as a general rule you would be expected to be able to teach children of all ages and abilities.
This is one of the most lucrative ways to teach English in Italy and you can easily expect to earn upwards of $30 per hour. Usually, you will be teaching people on a one on one basis and your students will come from all kinds of different backgrounds.
Many English teachers in Italy will do private lessons as a side job to top up their salary, however, you will need to find your own clients and strike up relationships in the local community to find people that want to learn English. You can arrange your classes, which usually last an hour at a time, at any time throughout your working week which is why this is an attractive option for many Expats in Italy.
When and Where Do You Look For a Job Teaching English in Italy?
If you’re looking for a job in Italy teaching English then you need to be aware that most language schools start in mid September or October and finish up in June. When you apply for a job the average contract will last approximately 9 or 10 months however, the details will vary from institution to institution.
This means that the best time to start looking for a job teaching English is in February, or early spring. Most schools and language institutes want to have their staff secured for the following year so if you can be there early then you will have the best chance of securing a position.
That said, there are jobs available throughout the year although if you apply half way through a term, or course, then you will have to rely on a teacher leaving a position that you can replace! So realistically, you want to try to apply as soon as you can, ideally before the institute confirms their team for the year ahead.
Once you have landed a job, provided that you perform well, you can hold on to your position for many years to come as your skills improve and your experience grows.
When it comes to summer schools, the best time to apply for a job is during the spring. Most summer camps run through July and August so you should be applying for a job at least several months in advance. Of course, if you are planning to move to Italy then you can apply for a position at a summer camp up to a year in advance but you need to remember that the job will only last for a few months.
Do You Need Qualifications To Teach English in Italy?
Theoretically, you don’t actually need any kind of qualification to teach English although because jobs teaching English are highly sought after in Italy you will probably need a TEFL certificate at the very least!
You can study a TEFL course either online or in person. TEFL, or ‘Teaching English as a Foreign Language’, is a fantastic course to have under your belt and will serve you well throughout your career. The skills that you learn on the course are not only tailored for teaching classes but they are also highly transferable.
The main types of qualifications that you can use to get a job teaching in Italy are known as:
- TFEL (Teaching English as a Foreign Language)
- TESOL (Teaching English as a Second Language).
Both courses are extremely useful and are acceptable to all major language institutions in Italy. It is very helpful if you also have at least a Bachelor’s Degree from a University as well, because this will make you stand out from the other applicants.
Visas for Working As A Teacher in Italy.
You can obtain a Visa to live and work in Italy no matter where you are from in the world, although it is much easier if you are a member of the European Union. Nonetheless, if you are an American, or from elsewhere in the West you can easily obtain the necessary paperwork to live and settle in Italy.
For more information about your specific circumstances you just need to visit your local Italian embassy or consulate and the helpful staff can give you the details you need; however, for the most part you will have no problems obtaining a residency permit in advance, particularly if you have the offer of a job.
Teaching English In Italy Is Rewarding.
There are many Expats in Italy who began their new lives in the country as teachers, then fell in love with the landscapes, culture and society and never left! So, if you have an inkling that you might want to teach English then there are few better places that you could live than Italy!
You will need an excellent command of the English language, a get and up and go attitude and great listening skills. You’ll ideally be friendly and understanding and have good organizational abilities and sometimes, you will need to work under pressure to tight dealings.
However, if you throw yourself into the situation you will quickly learn on your feet and in no time at all you’ll be living your dream life.