- Bachelor's Degree in any field - no teaching experience required
- Internationally accredited TESOL/TEFL certification - TravelBud provides TEFL certification options in-person, completed in Japan, and online
- Proficient English language skills, both spoken and written
- Clean criminal background check
- Be in good physical and mental health
- JOB SECURITY: TravelBud guarantees you a teaching job in carefully vetted schools where every effort is made to match placement preferences.
- SALARY: Earn salaries of $1600 and $2100 USD monthly (225,000 - 295,000 Yen)
- SAVING POTENTIAL: Save $2500 to $5,000 over a year of teaching which you can use to fund your travels or return home with (while you can save more if you budget more carefully and live like a local).
- SUPPORT: We walk you through everything you need to know before you depart to Japan and from the moment you touch down, you'll continue to receive 24/7 support from our in-country team who will be on hand for you throughout your placement.
- TEFL CERTIFICATION: You will graduate with an Internationally Accredited 120 hour in-class TEFL/TESOL certificate that never expires and can be used to teach all over the world.
- PLACEMENT ONLY: If you already have an accredited TEFL/TESOL certificate you may qualify for our placement only program.
- TEACHER NETWORK: A support network of fellow teachers where you can meet other like-minded individuals who are experiencing the same pleasures and challenges you are.
- PERSONAL AND PROFESSIONAL GROWTH: When you do head back home, you’re not just another resume in a pile of resumes - you are someone different who’s done something interesting and rewarding.
- LIFETIME PLACEMENT: Once you’ve completed your contract, we can guarantee you a position at another partner school throughout Asia for which you are eligible, at no additional charge to you.
For the past 10 years, TravelBud has helped thousands of teachers successfully navigate the intricacies of teaching abroad by offering guaranteed job placements at the most trusted schools, country-specific and online Internationally Accredited TEFL/TESOL Certification, In-depth Cultural Orientations to help you settle into your new environment and award-winning helpful support from start to finish including pre-departure and 24/7 in-country.
In addition the personal assistance and 24/7 support we provide, you’ll also have a support network of fellow teachers where you can meet other like-minded individuals who are experiencing the same pleasures and challenges you are.
We know the key to success is well-trained, culturally-adjusted, and emotionally-supported teachers and we understand from direct experience that working and traveling abroad is a challenging, fulfilling and deeply rewarding personal experience.
Teaching English in Japan is an experience like no other. Japan is incredibly unique and will fill you with new tastes, sights, smells, intercultural immersion, and experiences that will stick with you for the rest of your life - in a (very) good way!
Through TravelBud’s program, you’ll be able to teach English in Japan for a year or more where you’ll earn up to $1900 USD per month, fully immerse yourself in Japanese culture, earn your TEFL/TESOL certification in Japan, and embrace a life-changing experience which will make you grow as a person.
All you need to qualify is to have a bachelor's degree in any field of study and be a citizen of one of the following countries: USA, Canada, UK, Ireland, Australia, New Zealand or South Africa.
When Can I Start?
If you want to start your teach abroad adventure in Japan as soon as possible, our online TESOL certification course and guaranteed placement program is the best option for you.
During normal times, it takes at least 4 months to start teaching in Japan from the time that you enroll in the program as the document collection and visa application process is quite rigorous so it is always best to sign up sooner rather than later to give you enough time to get organized before your departure.
If you want to take part in our in-class TESOL course and guaranteed placement program, which takes place in Japan and includes a full week of cultural orientation, we have the following upcoming start dates for 2023 which have limited capacity:
2023 Intake dates
Our 120-hour Online TEFL/TESOL course starts on the First Monday of every month.
2024 Intake dates
- 19 February 2024
- 22 April 2024
- 24 June 2024
- 26 August 2024
- 21 October 2024
Speak to our experienced Enrollments Coordinators about the best option for you.
TravelBud's Fees include Guaranteed Job Placement
We find you a teaching job to ensure you have the maximum work hours allowed under your visa.
- You’ll have more time to make friends and adjust to the culture.
- You can focus on enjoying your new lifestyle knowing your income is secured.
- With TravelBud, we walk you through everything you need to know before you depart to Japan and from the moment you touch down, you'll receive 24/7 support from our in-country team who will be on hand for you throughout your teaching placement for anything you need help with - be it big or small.
Placements are throughout the country in both urban and suburban areas however the majority of positions are in the suburban areas.
There are two main types of teaching positions available in Japan – public schools and private language centres (known as eikaiwas in Japan).
The role is slightly different in each school type.
In eikaiwas teachers will work very independently and will lead each class.
In public schools, teachers work alongside a Japanese classroom teacher in the day-to-day school system as an Assistant Language Teacher (ALT).
Public School (Alt) Positions
Assistant Language teachers work in public school alongside a Japanese classroom teacher. Teachers at public schools work a regular Monday to Friday schedule. This will be a great cultural experience as it is a chance for teachers to experience the day-to-day school system in Japan. Teachers will typically teach between three to six classes each day. ALTs may be required to teach at several different public schools in the area during the week.
The day-to-day role of an ALT will differ depending on the teacher they’re working alongside. Sometimes they will take the lead in delivering lessons with guidance from the Japanese classroom teacher on what to teach. Other times they will act in an assisting capacity and will help with conversational English.
Eikaiwa positions are where students pay to learn English outside of the traditional school system. The majority of the Eikaiwa schools we work with focus on teaching young learners. Due to this, the teaching times are typically outside of traditional school hours on evenings and weekends. Days off commonly fall on weekdays.
The class sizes of these schools are around 6 – 10 students per class. They tend to have quite intensive working hours where you will teach up to 6 or 7 classes, with a 10-minute break in-between. In Eikaiwa school’s teachers will be guided on what to teach and typically will have access to materials such as a curriculum, text books and some basic games and toys to use for lessons.
There tends to be flexibility for teachers in crafting their lesson around the topics to teach. Teachers in Eikaiwa positions tend to have some autonomy in teaching and need to be highly independent.
Each eikaiwa is different so exact teaching hours and what the school looks like will differ. Some eikaiwas are based in shopping centers for the convenience or parents dropping their children to attend lessons. Others are stand-alone classrooms in towns throughout Japan.
Most of our Eikaiwa positions require commuting to different locations for work, up to an hour is common. Some will have several branches in the same city that teachers will attend on different days. Others may require teachers to teach on a rotational basis spending around a week at each location, across four centers.
With these positions the teaching contact hours are shorter to allow time to commute and travel is reimbursed (not all positions provide this). In these positions the teacher is the one who opens up the classroom, sets up, teaches the class and then closes for the day, so a great deal of independence is required. You wouldn’t be teaching alongside many colleagues if in this school placement.
Do I have a say in what placement I receive?
Our placement team does their utmost best to place all our teachers at schools which best match their preferences (in terms of location, age group, and the type of school). While preference cannot be guaranteed, we can guarantee that our team will do everything possible to find the ideal placement for you.
We also encourage and guide our teachers to being open-minded to all types of placements - a first and vital step to a journey of personal growth and development that comes with teaching abroad in Japan.
Commutes are the norm in Japan. It is uncommon for teachers to live right by their placement schools. Teachers will typically commute from 30 minutes to 1.5 hours to work. At eikaiwas it is most common to commute using public transport, this could be buses or trains. At public schools it could be public transport, driving or cycling.
The position is full time, ranging from 20 - 30 hours per week and have two days per week off but the days may not be consecutive and those working at language schools should be prepared to teach on Saturday and Sunday as those are the busiest days of the week for language schools.
It is important to note the work culture of Japan is “Live to Work”, and Japanese people tend to work longer hours so foreign teachers should be prepared for the same expectations when living in Japan.
Placement areas are typically confirmed approximately one month before arriving in Japan or once they arrive in the country. Placements are rare in Tokyo, Kyoto or Osaka which are the more touristy areas teachers often ask about!
All participants, whether placement only or taking the TESOL/TEFL course in Japan will likely (but not in all cases) participate in an onboarding with their new schools, which can range from 1-2 weeks prior to starting their teaching assignments. During these onboardings, most of which covers the teaching style and curriculum of your school, you typically receive most or all of your wages, so this is essentially paid onboarding.
Placements are throughout the country in both urban and suburban areas however the majority of positions are in the suburban areas.
There are a wide range of teaching environments, from more advanced, modern classrooms with small class sizes and extensive technology in the classroom, to classrooms that are standard, and lacking in technology. Some placements will have assistant teachers in the classroom but many will not.
Public holidays: Approximately 10 public holidays per year (this may vary and is up to the discretion of the school). Some public holidays are off but some may be work days as well.
Paid Vacation: Approximately 5-10 paid vacation days (this may vary and depends on the school).
Dress code for teaching?
Professional dress unless otherwise advised by the school.
What is the level of English and behavior of students?
The level of English proficiency is generally beginner but some Japan people can speak English well enough to give you directions. Compared to the West, local children are much more respectful and disciplined. This is likely due to the conservative nature of Japan society and the strong respect for elders and family.
Full Program Highlights
- Guaranteed job placement available throughout the Japan at one of TravelBud's vetted schools
- Salary of $1600 to $2100 (USD) per month
- Paid leave
- Assistance finding suitable accommodation
- Thorough pre-departure support and assistance with documentation and interview prep from our experienced team with first-hand experience teaching abroad - that's right, we've been there and have done it ourselves!
- Internationally accredited TESOL certification course which can be completed online or in-class in Japan, both of which include practical teaching experience, and are tailored specifically to the Japanese English language curriculum
- In-depth cultural immersion course to ease you into life in Japan, which includes lectures on Japanese culture and society, history, politics, geography, 7 hours of Japanese language classes, and several fun and enriching cultural excursions
- 24/7 in-country support throughout your teaching placement
- A bachelor's degree in any field
- No teaching experience is required - we provide all training if you don't have already
- A clean criminal record
- Be in good health
- Be a first language English speaker with an excellent command of the English language (both written and spoken)
- Hold a 120 hour TESOL (or TEFL or CELTA) certificate. Our program also offers an excellent 120 hour online, or in-country (done in Japan) TESOL course with internationally accredited certification tailored to teaching in Japanese classrooms with an experienced instructor.
- Our job placements are only open to citizens of the following countries: United States, Canada, United Kingdom, Ireland, Australia, or New Zealand.
Why choose TravelBud?
With so many options out there, it can be overwhelming trying to figure out what the best program is for you. We have carefully designed a program with everything we believe is needed for the most successful experience possible teaching in Japan, based on our first-hand experience.
We give you far more than just a job placement
We provide far more than just a job or recruitment service as we believe there's so much more needed for this to be the most successful and life-changing experience possible. From finding the right job at the right school which pays you well and on time, and will treat you fairly, to having an experienced support team for you to lean on throughout your time on the program, to receiving the most in-depth cultural orientation to guarantee a successful cultural immersion, receiving an internationally accredited TESOL/TEFL training which is tailored specifically to Japanese schools to ensure you're prepared for the right type of teaching environment, TravelBud's Paid Teaching Program in Japan is without a doubt the highest quality and most holistic option you can choose.
We manage expectations accurately
We won't promise you what we cannot deliver. For example, we won't promise you a starting salary of $3000 as this is very uncommon in Japan - instead, we will be upfront about the starting salaries which schools in Japan offer to beginner teachers, which are seldom higher than $2500 per month. This is all part of our effort to ensure that your expectations are managed accurately and you are given the most honest and accurate information about the experience you're signing up for.
We believe less is more
We only offer Paid Teaching programs in a small number of countries. This is because we believe in quality over quantity, or that less is in fact more. By only focusing on what we love and know like the back of our hands, we have managed to focus all our efforts on being able to provide what we truly believe is the best all-round experience anyone can ask for from teaching abroad. We may not offer a wide range of countries to choose from or a wide range of different types of programs, but we can guarantee that the programs we do offer are the best you can find.
We've walked the path before you
We have all taught abroad in the countries we offer. In fact, every TravelBud team member is a program alumni and has experienced first-hand what our programs entail. This ensures that you will receive guidance, advice and the full support from a team who have gone through the same thrilling yet somewhat daunting experience you are considering embarking on, which will ensure you're in the best hands possible throughout this incredible journey of growth and adventure.
Interview Coaching and Guaranteed Placement
We also include step-by-step one-on-one walkthroughs to help you with your job and visa applications and to coach you with any interviews you'll need to have with your prospective employers. This raises the acceptance rate from under 40% of applicants (for those who use other channels) to 95% who come through TravelBud. Job placement is guaranteed once you're accepted onto our program, so if you're not successful in your first interview, we'll have plenty of alternative positions for you to interview for.
Cultural Immersion Course
We believe in responsible travel and in the context of teaching abroad, that means being culturally sensitive, respectful travelers. Our Japanese cultural immersion course is run by a mix of local and foreign/expat staff and is set up in a way that ensures you understand Japanese culture deeply even before you set foot in a classroom. You'll start teaching feeling much more prepared for your new life abroad, ready to engage with the community you'll be living in and have a rewarding and immersive cultural experience.
Some of what's included on the week-long orientation:
- Learn the basics of speaking the local language with 7 hours of Japanese language classes
- Attend lectures on Japanese culture, religion, history, geography and politics by experts in their field
- Attend workshops on working in Japanese organizations, working in Japanese schools and on being a teacher in the country
- Take part in enriching cultural excursions which includes visits to an ancient Japanese castle, a history museum, an authentic Japanese cooking class, and more
Training: Internationally Accredited TESOL Certification
Don't have a recognized TESOL, TEFL or CELTA certificate yet? No problem! Our program comes with a highly acclaimed 120-hour in-class TESOL course conducted in Japan's coastal city of Nagoya. You'll learn everything from classroom management to creating lesson plans and the specific issues Japanese students battle with when tackling English. Not only that but you'll be able to try out your skills in front of a live class at a local Japanese school before you head out to your placement school so that you can be sure you'll be ready for whatever Japan throws at you as an English teacher.
Our TESOL Certification Course includes the following:
- 120 hours of in-class TESOL theory and instruction
- Overview of the history and theory of teaching English as a foreign/second language
- Practical training on how to teach speaking, listening, writing, and reading in the Japanese classroom
- Attend workshops on working in Japanese organizations, working in local schools and on being a teacher in the country
- Extensive training on lesson plan development and presentation
- Multiple opportunities to receive and offer feedback with your peers and instructor throughout the course
- Tons of tips and examples on how to teach English to every age group in Japan
- Extensive training on effective classroom management, being mindful of cultural sensitivities in Japan
- Two full days of practical teaching at a local Japanese school (if you complete our in-class TESOL course) to gain real experience of what it's like to teach in Japan - practical teaching is done via Skype presentations if you opt for our online TESOL course
Got a TEFL/TESOL certificate already?
Chat with our enrollments team to see if your certification will be accepted by our school network in Japan! Then all you'll need is our Cultural Immersion Course and Placement.
The TravelBud Team- celebrating 10 years of life-changing teach abroad programs.
Over the last 10 years, we’ve helped thousands of teachers successfully navigate the intricacies of teaching abroad.
Our entire enrollments and support team have teach abroad experience.
When enquiring with us you'll be speaking to one of the following knowledgable and personable former teacher travellers:
Grace - Grace taught English in Anseong, just outside Seoul in South Korea. She'll help you get all the answers to the questions you may have about taking the plunge and going overseas for your amazing teach abroad adventure.
Alyssa - Alyssa was an English, math and science teacher at a private school in a beautiful beach town in Costa Rica. While teaching in Costa Rica, Alyssa was able to experience different cultures and travel to other Latin American countries. She'll help you plan your teach abroad adventure to the best of her ability and share her insights along the way!
James - Following James' teach abroad year in Australia James headed back to study but soon found himself fighting with the unquenchable thirst for travel and made his way back overseas, travelling and working from the cold and wet Moorlands of Northumberland to the Sandy shores of Sun-kissed St Tropez. James will guide you through all your options for your teach abroad adventure.
Saskia - Saskia is CEO at TravelBud and taught English in Thailand. She's responsible for overseeing your success teaching abroad. Whether it’s your nerves that need calming or advice on budgets, Saskia is always here to help you on your way to your life-changing adventure!
Kim - Kim lived in Joenju, South Korea, working as an English teacher at two public schools and one boarding school in Wanju. Since then, she's been involved various education initiaties, held the position of enrollment coordinator, was a lead instructor for both online and in-class TEFL/TESOL courses and most recently was a Program & Placement Manager for our South Korea program!
Ben - Ben lived and taught English in the former capital city of Ayutthaya in Thailand. Since returning to South Africa, Ben has become passionate about helping other people to get the opportunity he had to experience a new part of the world and broaden his horizons.
Chelsea - Chelsea moved to Jiangsu province in China and worked as an English Teacher for 5 years at a training centre, a public shcool and an international school. She will assist you with all your support questions and help guide you smoothly throughout your experience.
Read more about the TravelBud team at https://travelbud.com/about/