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About

Reach To Teach has over 40 years of ESL teaching and recruitment experience with offices in the South Korea, USA, and Taiwan. We understand the business and care about our teachers. The schools and programs we represent are among the best in the business. We provide our teachers with an upfront and honest perspective, because were all teachers at one time as well. We will prepare you to live and work abroad for a year, while always offering support as well.

Reach To Teach the only American official recruiter for the EPIK & SMOE program. The EPIK & SMOE programs in Korea offer a unique experience to gain valuable ESL teaching experience in public schools with start dates in August and February.

We also work with a number of private schools from Seoul to Busan and everywhere in between. We have private schools openings every month, so it's always a good time to apply!

Questions & Answers

Regarding the dog, I think that this would be specific to the countries immigration and visa laws. I would imagine there is some paperwork that needs to be done to bring any pet to a new country. However, I am sure it is possible. South Korea has tons of dogs for sale. I had a friend who adopted a dog during her time there and then returned home to the US with her South Korean dog.
It depends on the apartment you end up in, I have many friends with small cats and dogs so generally yes, but not all apartments will allow it.
Hi Kayla, It looks like EPIK requires a 20-hour in-class TEFL component along with a 100-hour TEFL certification.
Thank you Tyson, you've provided a great insight on what's available and possible!!

Reviews

93%
based on 58 reviews
  • Benefits 9.2
  • Support 9.6
  • Fun 9
  • Facilities 9.4
  • Safety 9.5
Showing 31 - 45 of 58
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Dtrunk
9/10

Supportive recruiter

Reach to Teach has a very helpful staff who are friendly and always supportive of their recruits. They keep you updated constantly on your application and you are always notified of any changes that occur in a timely manner.

Moving to a foreign country and meeting new people is a great experience that can you teach you many things about the world and yourself. The language barrier can be very frustrating and frightening at times, so be sure to prepare yourself as much as you can.

How can this program be improved?
Better organization within the EPIK program in general would be appreciated. The mandatory teaching contest seems unnecessary and just added work to those who are new to teaching and struggling to adapt to a different job.
Yes, I recommend this program
Default avatar
tfowler000
9/10

Off to a great start in beautiful Korea

Make no mistake, teaching is a very difficult job. You will find your patience tried in ways that you couldn't have imagined in advance, and there are a number of unique challenges facing a foreign teacher.

With that having been said, I haven't regretted taking the plunge yet. I have learned and grown as a person so much since I've gotten here, and Korea is a wonderful place to go for any first-time teachers. Koreans are by and large very friendly, the other foreigners you'll meet will almost certainly be interesting and intelligent people, and teaching is a very rewarding experience.

I can't stress enough how helpful John and the other people at Reach to Teach were during my application process. I kind of doubt I'd have made it all if it weren't for them, to be honest. They were always willing to answer my questions, patiently worked with me through the arduous task of gathering all the documents together, and called me on a moment's notice to talk through something. Getting it all done would have been infinitely harder without them, and I highly recommend them to anyone thinking about teaching in East Asia.

Yes, I recommend this program
Default avatar
Westley
10/10

RTT was a

I'm so happy I went to Korea through Reach To Teach. The entire process was laid out to me in a step by step format. I always felt that I knew what the next step was and my recruiter John always kept me well informed on the required paperwork and estimated times for processing the paperwork.

Life in Korea has been great so far. The people have been very understanding of the fact that I am a foreigner here and have helped me settle into this country. My co-teachers have been amazing as well. They helped me set up a bank account, find an apartment (which is paid for by EPIK) and sign up for a cell phone. After the first few months it really starts to feel like a home.

Yes, I recommend this program
Default avatar
jrb
10/10

Great orientation

The orientation was wonderful. Amazing presenters. The only thing I would change was our free time. It's our first time in Korea and we were give NO time to explore. I would take away the 10pm curfew and extend it to midnight, and maybe give us one day off to have the chance to explore a bit.

Other than that, I learned a lot of practical information from the presenters that were chosen.

Yes, I recommend this program
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mchosey819
10/10

Teaching at Topia, Seoul Korea

I am a teacher for a hogwon franchise called Topia. I was placed by Reach to Teach. Throughout the entire process, the staff at Reach to Teach has been incredibly helpful and supportive. I have been very impressed that they continued to stay in touch with me after starting my position.

Overall I am satisfied with my job at Topia. The pay is decent and the housing is super convenient. I can walk to my school and I live adjacent to a main subway line. My coworkers are all very nice and my boss is easy to talk to. I teach elementary and middle school. The elementary kids are awesome, but the middle schoolers can be challenging sometimes.

My only complaint about Topia is that they make it very difficult to take vacation days. Also, they do not have as many holidays as public schools.

Overall I have been having a fantastic experience. I have tried many new foods, got back into hiking and outdoorsy adventures, and have participated in tons of festivals and events in the Seoul area. I have met tons of amazing people from all over the world. I highly recommend using Reach to Teach to find jobs in South Korea.

Yes, I recommend this program
Default avatar
SBoedecker
8/10

South Korea - Reach to Teach

Reach to teach provided a great service to help me with securing a placement teaching in South Korea. Not only did they help with the front end process but the staff and members are available throughout for support with my time in Korea.

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

Reach To Teach

Deciding to come to South Korea was a major decision in my life. Without the help of my recruiter-Reach To Teach, moving overseas would not have been possible.

It takes a special person to leave everything you've ever known, and move across the world, especially when there is a huge language barrier. I chose Reach To Teach, because I feel that they are the most reliable, honest and qualified recruiting company. Their website is not difficult and it explains exactly what you need to know. I enjoyed the pictures they have of past and current teachers. RTT holds monthly events with their staff and teachers, which provides a way for everyone to feel at home. I really enjoyed the blogs of other teachers. I was able to read about people teaching in Korea, Taiwan and China. I had an interview with a former teacher who gave me some great insight. I also like that the people who work for RTT are all former teachers with great advice and experience. The head recruiter 'John Kellenberger' is top notch. I've talked with many people who had issues with their recruiter. He works for you and that is something that should be commended. There was not a time when John did not contact me when I asked. He also sends e-mails just to see how things are going. In my opinion, he was more than just a recruiter helping me get to Korea; he is a friend. I felt as if we were buddies. With a transition this big in your life, that is something that everyone needs.

In Korea, or any Asian country, your life is unpredictable. I think this is what is so exciting here. On a typical day, I work 8:30AM-4:30PM. I usually go home for about 2 hours, and then I head downtown to meet friends for dinner and drinks. We usually stay out and socialize for a few hours and we are back home by 10:00-11:00PM depending. The weekends are packed with eating, drinking and travel. Korea is a social culture and it allows you just relax and smell the roses as they say.

The biggest challenge is the language barrier. They speak Korean, you speak English. For the most part, it is easy to get around town with speaking much Korean. However, when you go to a restaurant and the ENTIRE menu is in Korea and there may or may not be a picture. We simply just point and hope for the best! Another challenge is teaching low-level students. You ask a question and they just stare at you. Motivating students is a challenge as well.

The best thing here for starters is the cost of living. It is very cheap! A 2 Liter bottle of water cost 800 won, which is equal to about $.75 is America. There is hardly any crime! You can just walk around freely at night, and be perfectly fine! Children as young as 5-6 are walking to school alone.

Overall, I highly recommend moving overseas, especially South Korea! It's a decision that you won't regret! There are so many people here with a different perspective on life and it is so enriching!

Yes, I recommend this program
Default avatar
mj10
10/10

Awesome experience

The staff of RTT is really awesome. They are always an email or phonecall away to answer even the most trivial of questions. Although I didn't like the fact that we did not know WHERE we were being placed (which is EPIK's decision, NOT RTT's), RTT did it's best to ensure us and keep us confident throughout.

Yes, I recommend this program
Default avatar
mylyfe196
10/10

safety rating

The only reason I gave the safety review a six is because of the lack of traffic enforcement laws in South Korea. I honestly feel like I am playing roulette with my life every time I get on a bicycle or attempt to use a crosswalk. Remember the game FROGGER on Atari... probably not; I feel like the frog.

As far as day-to-day life in Korea, it is great. I was blessed with an amazing placement, a great school, awesome co-teachers (7 of them), and a good place to live. I was placed in Sangju; a bit rural, but perfect for me. I am huge into supporting the local economy, so I buy all of my fruits and vegetables at the marvelous farmers market held every five days; only five minutes from my house.

The transit system (train and bus) was fairly easy to figure out, but we did have the help of some other great EPIK veterans.

The most suprising thing so far has been the incredible community of foreigners (waygooks) in Sangju. When I originally started reading reviews and what not while applying through Reach to Teach (amazing recruiting agency. Attention: John Kellenberger ( ; ) I thought maybe there would be 5 to 10 other foreign teachers in the city I would be placed in. I was wrong. Try at least thirty. Great support group. We have set up our own Sangju facebook page which is an amazing resource. It is an invaluable resource for everything from how to understand the washing machine controls to just getting a group dinner together or answering questions about schools or lesson planning.

I have only been in Korea for about two and a half months, but must say it was a great decision. None of this would have been possible without the thorough guidance of Reach to Teach. I have already recommended them to others on blogs who are thinking about teaching English overseas, and will continue to do so.

Please feel free to contact me with any further questions or needs.
Thank you again for your guidance Reach to Teach and Mr. John Kellenberger. Have a great dye.

Jesse cox
[email protected]

Yes, I recommend this program
Default avatar
RebeccaBates
10/10

Great program!

The first couple of days in Korea were, admittedly, stressful and confusing, but I imagine that's how it would be for any country a foreigner moved to. It has been a few months now, and I can say with complete honesty that I am happy and having fun. Teaching can be hard, and it does take a significant amount of energy to keep up with the kids, but it is absolutely the most rewarding job I've ever had (this coming from someone who is used to 9-5 salaried jobs). So, while the weeks can be challenging, they fly by.
The hardest part of my experience so far was the Visa process. My recruiter warned me that it might be a "get your Visa one day and get on the plane the next" sort of deal, and I didn't believe him. He was right, though, and actually I had to get my Visa the same day as my flight to Korea! I was confused and frustrated at why the process was so last minute and mysterious, but every teacher who I have met in Korea has had a similar experience. It's not the recruiter, it's just the way the country does things. Regardless, I am happy to be here and wouldn't trade this experience for anything. Plus, my co-teachers (both foreign and Korean) are simply amazing and I love coming to work every day with them.
Also, I am a vegetarian. Being a vegetarian in Korea is like moving to Nashville because you hate country music. There is meat in everything. So, I do a lot of cooking at home. It can be hard at times but being a vegetarian is definitely doable, and I am happy and healthy.
Another note, I am a work-out fanatic, and it was hard for me to find a gym. When I finally did join a gym, I was surprised at the, err, differences in gym quality. Yes, there are treadmills and yes there are bikes and weights, but they are very, very old. A Korean friend told me that working out in gyms is not as big of a deal in Korea as it is in the USA or the UK. I'm grateful to have found a gym at all, even if it isn't the same as back home.

Come to Korea! It will change your life!!

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

Going on 3 months in Korea with no complaints

While placements and work experiences vary from individual to individual, I can say that I personally could not be happier with how my situation turned out here in Korea. I have a nice apartment, friendly co-teachers and Korean co-workers, and have found a great group of friends here. Reach to Teach does a great job of preparing their recruits for coming to Korea, as well as keeping in contact with them should they need any sort of assistance. I have no complaints about the organization, nor do I have any complaints about the position I obtained through applying with them.

Yes, I recommend this program
Photo of Whitney Zahar
Whitney
7/10

Life in Korea Through Reach to Teach

I found Reach to Teach to be a very professional and honest company staffed with people who really did care about their teachers and their experiences. At the time, most of their focus was on Taiwan, so their information on their website about Korea was very light, but I'm glad to see that has changed over the last couple of years. Likewise, there weren't as many get-togethers, but I didn't mind. Reach to Teach was able to set things up so nicely that it gave me the confidence to branch out and enjoy my Korean experience on my own. What I really loved was that before I came to Korea, I felt like I could really talk to my recruiter if I needed anything. I had a tragedy in my family shortly before I was to leave the United States, and I requested to delay my departure. My recruiter was so understanding, and let me have a couple of months to settle things. "Your job is waiting for you," he said. "Let us know when you are ready." I knew I was involved with truly good people when I got involved with Reach to Teach, and they seem to be growing, which is always a good thing!

Yes, I recommend this program
Default avatar
Incheonite
10/10

They're good people

In the past I never thought of myself as a particularly adventurous spirit, and the thought of moving to another country seemed unfathomably huge. But somehow I got the bug to teach English in Korea, and working with Reach to Teach I always felt like I was well cared for. Everyone there has been or is currently a teacher in a foreign country, and not only do they know what you're going through, but I just had the feeling all along that they really care, and I felt informed and supported and reassured about all my concerns. And complicated paperwork is usually completely overwhelming for me, but they laid out the process and patiently worked with me step by step till it was all done. I just wish they would help me with my taxes. When my friends back home find out that somebody they know is interested in teaching overseas, they pass on my email address, and I consistently recommend Reach to Teach Recruiting because of my 100% positive experience with them.

Yes, I recommend this program
Default avatar
mseitz2389
8/10

My experience with Reach to Teach

Reach to Teach has been very helpful in my experience with them. They were very professional as a recruiting agency when it came to answering me questions and keeping me informed throughout my application process. However, I beleive that some things could have been done faster as it sometimes took up to three days for me to receive a response via email. Reach to Teach did successfully get me a job in South Korea and I currently love where I am located. I originally wanted a city positon but my location is only a 25 minute train ride to Daegu so I have the best of both worlds. I can vist Korea's third biggest city any day of the week and I have the luxory of living in the country when I just want to relax and maybe visit the local wine tunnel in Cheongdo. Overall, I am very happy with my life in Korea and I have Reach to Teach to thank for that.

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

Go with RTT!

Having come to Korea by myself and applying by myself, having RTT there for help and support was really great. Applying directly through EPIK may be faster, but you will not get the kind of support the RTT provides!

Yes, I recommend this program

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About Reach to Teach

As any ESL Teacher can tell you, finding a good teaching job abroad can be difficult. Similarly, a lot of ESL schools feel that finding a good teacher is equally difficult. This is where we at Reach To Teach come in. Our motto is matching great...