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i-to-i TEFL

About

i-to-i TEFL is one of the world’s leading TEFL Course providers, running English Government regulated training both online and in classroom courses in 10 different countries. The longstanding provider, founded in 1994, also offers paid and voluntary TEFL Internships with 1-10 month placements in classrooms across Asia and Europe. With over 600 links to international schools and language centres, i-to-i has an excellent global reputation for helping first-time TEFL teachers.

Website
www.i-to-i.com
Founded
1994
Headquarters

Chantry House
Victoria Road,
Leeds
LS5 3JB
United Kingdom

Reviews

Default avatar
hillary
1/10
No, I don't recommend this program

DO NOT DO AN INTERNSHIP WITH I TO I TEFL.

DO NOT TRUST I TO I TEFL.

DO NOT GIVE YOUR MONEY TO I TO I TEFL.

I was warned from people who worked in Thailand as TEFL teachers that these internships were scammy and that if you go over there, you'd probably find a job. But as I haven't finished my college course yet, I don't have a Bachelor's degree which is a necessary requirement for a proper paying TEFL job in Asia and so I decided to book the Thailand internship as I'm desperate to see whether I would like to teach as a future career.

I booked my internship last June in 2019 and I called them every month, asking if I could book my flight and they told me they needed to wait for "minimum numbers" for the trip just to be sure it would go ahead. Fast forward to January 2020 and I call them and they tell me I still can't book my flight as minimum numbers weren't reached. And I reminded them that flights were going up every single day and it was clear they didn't give a damn if we spent a fortune on flights.

I then asked, "So what happens if minimum numbers aren't reached and I've already booked my flight?" And one of the I to I staff responded saying "Well... you could just.. go on a holiday?" And my jaw absolutely dropped. I was FURIOUS. They don't give ANY guarantee that you're actually going on the internship. They say it's highly unlikely that it won't happen but the person I was talking to on the phone literally admitted to me I was gambling with my money if I booked my flight then. So it was either gamble my money and book a flight without their go ahead OR wait till their go ahead (which would probably have been April or May seeing as it took 8 months just to get 8 people to book) and have spent probably nearing two grand for a flight, as flights in January were already around 1200.

So I decided to get a refund and I cried when I heard how much I was getting back. I PAID 717 EURO. I GOT BACK 238 EURO. I got to keep my 120 hour TEFL course but because of their return policy where you only get half of what you paid, minus the course after a few days of buying the internship, I got back a FRACTION OF WHAT I PAID. I PAID 717 EURO FOR A SCAM. AN ABSOLUTE SCAM WHERE THERE'S NO GUARANTEE OR SECURITY WITH YOUR MONEY.

They don't care at all about the people doing the internship. It's actually hilarious in hindsight how I fell for it. They get you to work for free in a town four hours away from Bangkok,and the working hours were Monday-Friday, 8-4pm. So around 8 hours of unpaid work so you get this "experience". They prey on those who have no Bachelor Degrees by promising them a sort of cultural, teaching experience but really, they're just getting you to do free work and giving the kids of the town a teacher without proper qualifications. It's a scam on all sides.

They take all your money, give the kids an inexperienced teacher and both parties are left feeling used. IT'S A SCAM. I wish I had listened to those TEFL teachers in Thailand and my gut instinct.

I to I TEFL took more than half of my money. They didn't care whether I gambled my money on flights because they were trying to save their own asses in case the internship didn't go ahead. THEY DO NOT CARE ABOUT YOU, THEY'RE JUST AFTER YOUR MONEY. THEY DON'T CARE ABOUT THE KIDS EITHER, THEY'RE JUST LOOKING TO MAKE MONEY ON ALL SIDES, IT'S NOT ABOUT TEACHING OR EXPERIENCE, THEY'RE AFTER YOUR MONEY.

I will never forget that staff member who told me to just "go on a holiday" with a flight that would have cost me over a grand. HOW DARE YOU. HOW DARE YOU OFFER NO SECURITY OR GUARANTEE OR PEACE OF MIND WITH YOUR SERVICE.

DO NOT BUY THEIR INTERNSHIP. THERE IS A REASON WHY ONLY 8 PEOPLE HAD BOOKED THE INTERNSHIP IN THE SPACE OF 8 MONTHS. IT'S A SCAM. DON'T GIVE I TO I YOUR MONEY. THEY WILL SCREW YOU OVER

What would you improve about this program?
These unpaid internships shouldn't exist. They exploit young people and anyone who just wants experience and they exploit the kids who want to learn. They take your money and go.
Default avatar
Holly
9/10
Yes, I recommend this program

I would highly recommend the Vietnam internship to anyone who wants to experience a different culture while doing a really rewarding job. The teaching aspect is amazing, the children are so friendly and you find yourself developing your skills quickly. Before doing the internship I had no teaching experience but you soon get the hang of how the system works in the public school setting. Doing the internship was great because you meet loads of like minded people and all live within 5 minutes walk of each other. Although the housing is a bit basic compared to what you're used to at home you soon get used to it and it's a unique opportunity to live in a Vietnamese neighbourhood. You can eat in local establishments for not very much money at all and try foods that you maybe wouldn't come across as a tourist.

What is your advice to future travelers on this program?
Don't get caught up on the accommodation or organisation being different to what you're used to at home - everything will work out so just throw yourself in. Bring things from home for prizes for the kids, things like reward stickers or sweets from your home country.
Default avatar
Elizabeth
8/10
Yes, I recommend this program

This experience truly was once in a lifetime!
As a college leaver looking for travel and unique experiences, I came across this internship. I had no previous teaching experience nor was I planning on going into teaching as a career. However, I thoroughly enjoyed the whole process and would definitely now use the qualification I have gained to teach again in other countries.
The initial induction when you arrive informed you of where you would be teaching, with whom and other useful information including Thai phrases, dress codes and useful contacts. I was placed at a school with another intern, where we lived on the school grounds in a traditional Thai home, a 10 minute cycle from the next school where 2 other interns were teaching. Our timetable consisted of teaching all ages at the school, some with assistance from the English teacher there and some without. Planning the lessons and insuring they were interactive was a vital part as the children's focus was easily lost in younger years due to the lack of Thai spoken by us. All the teachers and students were so welcoming and loved every second we were there. On weekends we could travel around so did this in small groups from the internship program, visiting places such as Bangkok, Pattaya, Kanchanaburi and many others. Finally, the last week was spent on an island relaxing with the other interns and was definitely the cherry on top of the whole experience. Would 100% recommend, the children are genuinely a treat to teach and no previous teaching experience was needed!

Default avatar
Rachel
9/10
Yes, I recommend this program

I did the 120hrs course along side working full time to enable me to change career paths and try teaching abroad instead.
This course was really well laid out and easy to follow.
Following completion of the course I received my results back in three working day with good notes and feedback... and I passed!
Now I can’t wait to get to Spain in September, just waiting to here back to where I will be placed.

What would you improve about this program?
Let you know younonly have a limited time to complete before you open the course. If I had known I would have opening it a different day.
Default avatar
Ana
10/10
Yes, I recommend this program

I thoroughly enjoyed teaching and living in Thailand. I met some amazing people along the way and it is definitely something I would recommend to anyone! When I wasn’t teaching during the week, the weekends were spent travelling the country. I loved the culture, the food and the whole experience was amazing! Teaching the kids was the best, it is classroom training you can’t get anywhere else and the 120 hour TEFL course was the perfect set up for working abroad. Can’t fault it!

Programs

Displaying 1 - 4 of 4

Alumni Interviews

These are in-depth Q&A sessions with verified alumni.

Paul Stanton

Paul Stanton grew up in Leeds, England: the Mecca of the North. After working in Leeds, he realized he needed a fulfilling travel experience and was a little apprehensive to go it alone. Paul decided to try his luck at being a teacher with i-to-i and chose Hanoi, Vietnam as his destination of choice. A three-month volunteer program, teaching in a secondary school in Hanoi, turned into Paul falling in love with the Vietnamese way of life. After i-to-i’s program finished he was given the opportunity to work full-time in a language school and due to his interest in language, he also decided to study and learn Vietnamese. Six years later, Paul still resides in Vietnam where he lives with his wife and family.

Why did you decide to get TEFL certified through i-to-i TEFL?

I decided to get TEFL-certified through i-to-i because I felt that I needed to “test the waters” so to speak. At that time, I did not know if teaching was the right thing for me and a full time intensive course was going to be no good if I only taught for about 3 months. i-to-i’s courses seemed to be full of the right knowledge and teaching techniques and had many different types of courses (that were short but packed full of the skills needed in order to survive your first time teaching abroad). When I first contacted i-to-i in 2005, I initially just wanted a unique travel experience with their volunteer programs, but then soon discovered their TEFL courses. Their skill and knowledge (and the patience to answer my many questions) were fantastic and it was a great stepping-stone into the life I have now.

What made this online TEFL experience unique and special?

At first I was a little skeptical due to the fact that courses seemed much too short and I kept comparing them to other TEFL courses. I was also worried whether the course would be internationally recognized in the locations where I wanted to teach. Regarding the first problem, i-to-i was great in explaining the differences between programs. Although the courses were short and could cover aspects of practical teaching skills in just a weekend, the i-to-i courses were packed full of the necessary skills and teaching know-how’s that I needed for my first venture into teaching. The courses are great as they give you the time to absorb all the skills and theories behind teaching. Taking you through the material step-by-step, the tutors, who were very helpful, were always there to provide further explanations and give you sound advice.

How has this experience impacted your future? (Personally, professionally, etc)

After my first teaching post in Hanoi, Vietnam with a secondary school called Binh Minh School (Sunrise School) in 2007, I traveled for a while and I returned to Hanoi to work full-time at a language center in the center of the city. I was swamped with offers from other schools too as English classes are growing in popularity in Vietnam and much of Southeast Asia. One thing I noticed is that many employers were thankful I had teaching qualifications, which were of course thanks to my i-to-i training. This greatly impressed the employers and put me in a good position to negotiate the terms and gave me great confidence in answering their questions about the methodology of teaching a foreign language (which they will ask you to test your teaching abilities).

I have grown professionally in that since that first teaching post in 2007; I have gone on to teach all levels of the English Language from beginner levels to advanced levels, taught business English for many high-profile companies, and trained students for the TOEIC (Test of English in Communication). From there, I have taught IELTS (International English Language Testing System) given to students around the world who need to apply for university placements in English speaking countries.

Happiness? Well I love it out here in Hanoi, Vietnam. I have a great job that I love everyday, a good life and most importantly, the first person I ever met in Hanoi became my soul mate! We dated for three years before getting married in 2011. We are happily married and enjoy every second together. I thank i-to-I, as they gave me a foot in the door to true happiness.

What is one piece of advice you would offer someone considering an online TEFL course?

Life has its up’s and down’s; if you feel lost or scared (like I was) to take a leap into unknown worlds, then at least have a back-up to help you along the way. Mine was the i-to-i TEFL course, which helped greatly in giving me the confidence to stand in front of a class full of students and deliver quality English lessons. Teachers around you will really appreciate your skills and effort. Employers will recognize your knowledge and skill on the subject. As always, one thing will always lead to another and many great things may happen, new people will be met and you will feel like the world is your oyster. Don’t worry about the “if’s and but’s” -- they are what make the journey and experience that much better. You never know where it all may lead.

Staff Interviews

These are in-depth Q&A sessions with program leaders.

Sam Hudson

Sam has worked for LoveTEFL for around 2 years now and has sent many teachers to their dream jobs in various countries but predominantly in South East Asia.

What position do you hold at LoveTEFL? What has been your career path so far?

I’ve travelled across the world and taught / volunteered at countless schools and institutions. The majority of my experience is within teaching English to European school children and this has been an extremely rewarding career path so far. My job at LoveTEFL is to source teachers from across the globe to get trained in TEFL and to find brilliant work opportunities abroad.

Did YOU teach abroad?! If so, where and what inspired you to go?

I’ve taught in Belgium for a long time teaching mixed groups of children from countries including Russia, France, Germany, Brazil, Spain and various other non-native English speaking countries. I was inspired to go because teaching was something new to me and I wanted to boost my skillset and learn things such as, how to control a classroom and how to create engaging lessons.

What does the future hold for LoveTEFL - any exciting new programs to share?

Yes, in fact we have just launched a brand new short programme in Thailand which allows people to get a taste of TEFL in a small supported group but also provides the opportunity to experience other cultural aspects of Thailand including volunteering with elephants and travelling to the beautiful southern islands to celebrate the end of the teaching trip.

What about the future of the TEFL abroad industry? How do you think international education will change over the next 10 years?

The TEFL abroad industry is an ever-growing industry. Countries such as China are constantly seeking more and more TEFL teachers as there is a huge demand for English teachers in Asia. The future looks very bright indeed for aspiring TEFL teachers as more schools in countries all over the world are wishing to spruce up on their English training.