Can I live in Thailand? – Study or teach English.

I’ve been living in Thailand over 11 years now and never had any problems with the Thais. The Thais are friendly and mind their own business so to speak. Even in Bangkok the capital where millions of people are living I haven’t had any unpleasant encounters in public.

I’m writing this blog because you might want to relocate or move next year to Thailand and teach English or study English. At the moment of writing this article there are a few cases of Covid-19 in a few places in Thailand, but here’s no lock down and you can go out as normal.

(In November 2021 the air borders are opening up again for some countries)

When this pandemic situation is over there’s plenty of opportunity to come and teach in Thailand. Perhaps you want to study and teach online, you can check out my blog about the BA TESOL program in Bangkok.

In this blog I want to take away any preconceived ideas that Thailand is unsafe for foreigners. There has been some protests recently, but nothing to worry about. I’ll try to give a good overview of what it is like to live in Thailand. I know that increasingly more people ask themselves: can I live in Thailand? If you have the right documentation for the right visa, all are welcome again, just like before the Covid-19 pandemic.

Living in Thailand.

For people living in Thailand, native or expat, life is simple and not complicated. The Thais don’t like complicated or serious people, you just need to smile and live your life. I’m a teacher and I’m proud to be one in Thailand, and I’m living it! The Thais are proud people, proud of what they do, their family, their jobs, their nation and culture.

If you want to live here, be part of it, you need to embrace their culture and their ways of doing things. It might be a bit difficult here and there, especially in the first year, but you’ll get used to their way of life. It all depends on you, just like the saying: ‘Do as the Romans do’, and all is good.

Everywhere you go, you’ll meet amazing friendly people if you are open to them. The Thais love farangs (Thai name for westerners) and like to greet and meet with them. You will never feel alone in Thailand, even if you are all by yourself in the countryside or in the hustle and bustle of the metropolis. It is easy to make Thai friends when you are open to their way of life, learning their language for example is a great ice-breaker. It is fun to speak a few words like ordering your favorite Thai dishes.


Teach or study – long-term visa.

The opportunity for teaching English is still available in Thailand. They need a lot of teachers which they haven’t been able to hire the last semester due to Covid-19 situation. Almost anyone with a good grasp of the English language and a TEFL can work as a teacher, but you need a work permit.

You are required to have a bachelor degree to be able to teach English in Thai schools. Also, if you have teaching experience in your home country, you’ll find a job easier with better chances of getting paid a higher salary.

A teaching degree is of course what you need, but they accept any college degree. There’s a great option for new teachers to obtain a TESOL degree in Bangkok, which is accredited and accepted all over the world. You can read about it in this blog. (as mentioned in the introduction as well)

So, there are two visas I want to focus on here in this blog, and that is the ED visa and the non-B visa. These are called long-term visas. With these visas you are allowed to stay in Thailand for a year which can be renewed or extended for another year. This allows you to stay 1-6 years with no problem. You can work with the non-B visa 6 years without a teacher’s license.

The non-immigrant visa type B (non-B visa) is the visa you get when you take a job as a teacher (or hotel manager, or dive instructor for example). If you enroll in a bachelor degree program of a college/university you need an educational visa (non-immigrant visa type ED).

If you really want to stay for a very long time and teach English, why not study for your BA TESOL. Personally, I will graduate in May 2021 and on we provide new and experienced teachers with useful information about teaching English to speakers of other languages (TESOL), since this is our passion and way of life.

TCT: Teacher Council of Thailand.

The Teacher Council of Thailand issues teacher’s licenses to foreign teachers. Do you need one when you start teaching? No, you don’t. You can get a temporary teaching permit or what is called a ‘waiver’.

Like I mentioned before, you can teach with a temporary license maximum 6 years, but if you would like to stay longer you need to get a master in education. With your master in education you can get a full teacher’s license which you will have the rest of your teaching career in Thailand.

Teaching English.

There are loads of schools looking for good English teachers. To answer your question: Can I live in Thailand? Absolutely! Here on you will find blogs about teaching and learning English using the best methods, techniques and advice that I have learned and received from the great educators during the TESOL degree program.

Teaching English isn’t for everyone, but you can learn how to instruct in a way so that you create learning opportunities for them. Empowering the language learner is what 21st century teachers are trying to do.

Living in Thailand as a teacher is to my mind the best option for anyone seeking an escape to the ‘Land of Smiles’.

TEFL courses.

There are lots of TEFL courses available online and held all over the world. Why not get your TEFL in Thailand? They support your visa and job placement. Study 4 weeks in beautiful Chiang Mai, which is in the North of Thailand. During the Covid-19 pandemic period this TEFL course will run as normal from their school in Chiang Mai. The Covid rules aren’t very strict in Thailand, there’s no lock down which is another good reason to relocate to Thailand. (Update Feb 3: The schools were closed in January)

Another good provider of Tefl courses is MyTefl which I support. They have both online and on-site courses. There are also Tefl jobs available on the website. You can check them out here. You will get 35% off on all courses with my promo code: LIVETESOL.

If you have any questions leave a comment, and I’d be happy to help you out.

8 thoughts on “Can I live in Thailand? – Study or teach English.”

  1. Hi, This is a good and very informative article for people like myself who loves traveling the world, I always wanted to visit Singapore but after this article I believe Thailand is a great idea too. My only question is, apart from the teaching opportunities in Thailand, what other opportunities can one look for as they plan to immigrate to Thailand? I am also passionate about teaching but not English, I am more into empowering people financially, are they such opportunities to teach financial freedom and make a living from it in Thailand?

    1. Hello Nedia. Thanks for your interest in my website. My website is about teaching English in Thailand or anywhere else in the world as a TESOL/ESL teacher. I have just started my TESOL website, and I will post many more articles about teaching methods and techniques, lesson plans and materials. Unfortunately, I don’t know how to answer your question about teaching financial freedom, I think you can find ideas in other communities, but feel free to return to my site in the near future. As for other visa types, you can go to my latest post. Thanks.

  2. Thank you for sharing your review about Living in Thailand and study or teach English. I found it very informative. I can hear you about sharing their way and cultures and practices. I have also travelled to a few neighboring countries. It is not easy until we get used to it. 

    I liked the English online courses which you had listed in your article. They sound very good. I checked their website and they seem to show good results and sounded very promising to me. I would definitely recommend it to all online users. This opportunity (Pandemic) is for learning new languages and skills online. Therefore, we should use it to its best.

    All the best!

    1. Thank you for your comment. Good to hear that you like the online TEFL course. If you have any questions regarding the course or teaching in real classrooms, please let me know. I’m planning to write a few blogs about teaching methods, classroom management and planning. Many new teachers are struggling with this when they are trying to implement what they have learned in the ESL/EFL classroom. Good luck with your future travels. Take care.

  3. I have always loved Thailand and the people and have visited there many times on holiday.

    Unfortunately I am not a teacher, however this website is awesome for any teaching professionals looking to teach in Thailand.

    I have passed this on to a few friends of mine who are teachers as not only do you cover the opportunities but also everything else to ensure a smooth move if they do decide to go ahead.

    Really loved this site!


    1. Thank you Mark! It’s great to receive a positive comment like yours. This motivates me to continue developing my site, it needs lots of improvement though, so thanks for sharing it with some teachers. If they have any questions about ELT or living in Thailand please let me know.

  4. Confession: I actually had to do a search for the meaning of TEFL ,lol… Teach English as a Foreign Language, of course, that makes sense!

    I am going to bookmark your site for future reference; I traveled for months in Asia and really miss it. Last time that I was in Thailand, 4 years ago, I caught myself daydreaming regularly about staying there for a year. The Thai are friendly and uncomplicated indeed, the food is excellent and I love the surroundings.

    So, maybe I will consider a teaching job in Thailand, I will check the info on your website while researching this idea! Thanks for making this info easily accessable.

    1. Great Kadanza! Yes, the Thais are very friendly and easy-going indeed. If you would like more information about teaching and living in Thailand please let me know. I’m writing an e-book about how to teach English to speakers of other languages, but it may take some time before it is finished. You can send me an email and I’d be happy to provide you with valuable information.

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