I have recently returned from a 3 week trip around Thailand and Laos, heading to Chiang Mai and slow boat to Luang Prabang which has absolutely blew my mind. It was my 3 week break from work which gave me the opportunity to do this. I have traveled around Thailand before to the islands which was great bt this time the trip has actually left me with a unsatiable appettite to travel more, to the point were I want to quit my job and go traveling for 4 months next year and find a job outhere maybe teaching or working in a bar or something.
I am 30 years old and currently work in a bank doing Project Management work which is good work but the trip I have just had makes it seem so unimportant and pointless.
Has anyone got any advice or giudance as to what the first steps a should take are to make this happen? I am currently saving for flights and spends and looking into TEFL courses. Is there anything else that I could do or think about?
Thanks a lot
#1 Geezy has been a member since 27/7/2009. Posts: 48
Live as cheap as you can right now and save as much as you can. I am assuming you are single, so hopefully you only have responsibility for yourself. While you are saving and have completed the TEFL course, you can start casting around for work possibilities. But remember, you might find yourself trading one work all day environment for another... If it is personal satisfaction you are looking for, then for your first year I would seriously consider looking for a job in an ampur in a small province somewhere. This will totally isolate you, force you to learn Thai (or the language of wherever you are going) and help you adapt to living within a small budget. Unless you have some unique skill, you are likely to only find teaching opportunities here - both rewarding and frustrating. Good luck and enjoy.
#3 MADMAC has been a member since 6/6/2009. Posts: 6,957
Hey thanks for the replies.
MADMAC - yes I am single so just responsible for myself. I am currently looking for Thai speaking courses to help me when i get over there, but as you say, total immersion within a Thai area will be invaluable!
I was thinking of actually doing a TEFL course when i got to Thailand as this would surely be more beneficial as i could make contacts and get to meet people heading the same way? Is it better to study TEFL in Thailand or here in the UK?
#4 Geezy has been a member since 27/7/2009. Posts: 48
Do you have a university education? That would help when job search time comes, but if you have a TEFL certificate, then for rural areas that should cut it.
I don't agree with everything TEFL teaches, but you sound like a big boy with your own mind, so you can evaluate for yourself what you think will and won't work. Where you take the course doesn't matter much, but if you knock it out nights in the UK, so much the better as you are already paying to live there.
Good luck. Let us know how it goes.
#5 MADMAC has been a member since 6/6/2009. Posts: 6,957
Yes mate. I have a BSc with a 2:1 grade. My degree is in Music Technology but I have worked in IT and Banking for a large coporate company for almost 6 years which has taught me a lot of skills.
Good idea about doing the TEFL here. I'm looking at the 120 hour classroom one. I'm also beginning to learn Thai, which is ae, but a lot different to any European language I've learned.
Cheers for all you help MADMAC
#6 Geezy has been a member since 27/7/2009. Posts: 48
No problem. If you get to the point where you are ready to do it, let me know. I might be able to help you find employment if Issan sounds appealing to you.
#7 MADMAC has been a member since 6/6/2009. Posts: 6,957
Make sure this is definately what you want to do, I get this feeling after every holiday I have but it wears off after a few months. It's called the post holiday blues and a lot of people get it where you feel like life is pointless and you want to give it all up to go back. But if you know its what you want to do then go for it, you can always come home if you find it isn't working. But remember working abroad is different to being on holiday in a country for 3 weeks.
Also if you're wanting to do the TEFL there is an offer for £80 on KGB deals today (I think its for 1 day only so if you want to buy it you'll have to do it soon). Not sure if the link will work but here it is: http://www.kgbdeals.co.uk/leeds/deals/52143/two-day-tefl-course---uk-tefl---leeds if it doesn't work just google it and it should come up.
#8 Nixxypie has been a member since 27/4/2011. Posts: 55
Sorry I don't know how to edit my previous post -
There is another offer for a TEFL course today but this time it's only £55, worth doing just in case for that price! http://www.kgbdeals.co.uk/national/deals/52239/tefltesol-qualification---global-language-training---national
#9 Nixxypie has been a member since 27/4/2011. Posts: 55
Thanks for the replies guys.
Nixxypie - Thank you so much for all your help and course links. Also, I understand what you are saying regarding the ole' holiday blues. But its got to the point now that I have thought about it in depth and have decided that I have to do it. If you can think it, you can do it. I will have back up cash to ensure that if all goes tits up i can come back to UK and I will be arranging a year long career break from work so i will still have a job at the end of it no matter what happens. Its a win/win situation i feel.
MADMAC - It would be awesome if you could get me some work and stay in touch until it get closer to the time and my plans start to materialize. You seem like a stand up guy.
#10 Geezy has been a member since 27/7/2009. Posts: 48
Send me an email at firstname.lastname@example.org and I will get you a point of contact now for applying for a job here. Starting pay is around 30,000 a month.
#11 MADMAC has been a member since 6/6/2009. Posts: 6,957
First off, do it!
If you've got a job waiting for you after a year if it doesn't work out then that seems like a no brainer. That said, I agree with Mac - save money. I just moved to Thailand last month, but I originally decided to do so about 2 years ago. Over 1 1/2 years ago I set a departure date, which I stuck to. During that year and a half I worked my ass off to save. It took serious discipline to keep plugging away at work, but I'm glad I did. Not having ample financial security would make things stressful for me now.
Also, teaching in Thailand doesn't pay much compared to other countries, but I know plenty of teachers here who are perfectly comfortable. Some of them go to Korea or Taiwan every couple years to save a solid US $10-20K and then move back to Thailand.
If you haven't yet, check out www.ajarn.com. Great site on the realities and possibilities of teaching and living in Thailand.
Do it my friend. Live your life a massive holiday. I was inspired a few years ago to do this and im going to carry on doing it for a while more.
Research and chat with people as much as possible.Not everything online is the best way. Forums and personally picking people out for advice is sometimes best. Let me know personally if you need some more specific advice.