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How Much Do English Teachers Make in Argentina?
Learn how much money you can make as a TEFL-certified teacher in Argentina across various job types and explore recommended start-up costs and cost of living expenses.
Written By: Lynda Galea | Updated: June 28, 2022
Written By: Lynda Galea
Updated: June 28, 2022
In addition to being famous for the racy Tango dance and one of the top exporters of beef in the world, Argentina also boasts one of the largest ESL markets in Latin America. There is a large demand for English teachers especially in and surrounding the capital Buenos Aires where many international businesses, restaurants, tour guides, and hotels seek English-speaking employees to accommodate their international clients.
In this article, we explore how much money you can make teaching English in Argentina and the expenses you will need to consider both in terms of start-up costs and your monthly cost of living.
Salaries for Teaching English in Argentina
There are several different teaching opportunities available for TEFL-certified teachers in Argentina. ESL (English as a second language) teachers who ultimately spend time teaching English in Argentina do so via one of the following avenues:
- Teaching English at a private language school while on a tourist visa;
- Offer in-person private tutoring lessons while on a tourist visa;
- Teach English online while on a tourist visa;
- A combination of the above.
Your salary will fluctuate depending on which teaching route you choose to pursue. On average, English teachers in Argentina can expect to make anywhere between $600 - $1,100 USD per month from working at a language school with the option to earn additional income through private tutoring ($10-20 USD per hour) and teaching English online ($5-$20 USD per hour).
Let's explore each option and what you can expect to earn from them:
1. Argentina Language School Salaries
There is a large demand for English teachers in and around the capital of Buenos Aires with ESL teaching positions also being found in smaller cities such as Cordoba, Mendoza, or Rosario (although positions in these locations may be more competitive). The school year in Argentina typically runs from March-December so those seeking employment as ESL teachers are advised to arrive in February or March and July or August to interview and secure a job. The majority of ESL teachers will find their first employment in a language institute once they are on the ground in Argentina.
Pay will fluctuate depending on where you are located, with teachers in larger cities like Buenos Aires earning more than those teaching in smaller cities and towns. English teachers working at language schools in Argentina can expect to make anywhere between $600 - $1,100 USD per month.
Visa Options for Teaching English in Argentina
Tourist Visa for Teaching English in Argentina
It is not typical for employers to hire teachers before arrival in Argentina or assist with work papers or a work visa. ESL teachers without Argentine citizenship can expect to work on their 90-day tourist visa and will need to renew it before the 90 days are over by visiting a neighboring country - a process commonly referred to as "border-hopping".
Border-hopping requires you to jump on over to a bordering country like Uruguay. When you return to Argentina they will give you a new stamp which gives you another 90 days. As of right now, there is no minimum amount of time you must stay outside of Argentina meaning you might be able to leave and return during the same day. While border-hopping may seem like an inconvenience, many view this as an opportunity to travel and explore nearby countries!
Additional Reading: What Type of Visa Can I Use to Teach English in Argentina?
2. Argentina Private English Tutoring Salaries
Private tutoring ESL students (especially adults) is extremely common amongst English teachers in Argentina. Teachers that choose this route are often:
- Teaching English in Argentina at a language school and taking on some private tutoring students to help supplement their income;
- Teaching English online and seeking supplemental income by privately tutoring students in addition to their online teaching job;
- Solely providing private-tutoring lessons as their only form of income.
Getting clients for private lessons is a marketing exercise, and all the avenues that seem appropriate to your circumstances have to be explored. Here are some ways you can market yourself:
- Post notices in schools and universities, coffee shops, supermarkets, or corner shops;
- Run an advertisement in the local paper;
- Send notices to local public schools, announcing your willingness to work with local students on their English;
- Compile a list of addresses of professionals (lawyers, architects, etc.) who may need English for their work and have the resources to pay for it and then contact them;
- Call on export businesses, distribution companies, perhaps even travel agencies;
- Get ESL business cards made before you leave your home country that has your name, email address, and phone number on them.
How much money can I make from private tutoring ESL students in Argentina?
As a private ESL tutor in Argentina, you should expect to charge and make around $10-20 USD per hour for one-on-one lessons (depending on where in Argentina you are based). If you are providing private tutoring lessons for small groups (2-3 students at a time), it's possible to increase your rates as your small group of students will be splitting the hourly cost amongst themselves.
Something to keep in mind - a student may only be after a single private tutoring lesson, or a handful, and can withdraw from their lessons with you at any time. As a result, you should be cautious when trying to budget your private tutoring income too far into the future.
3. Argentina Teaching English Online Salaries
Like private ESL tutoring, teaching English online is an extremely popular way for teachers to make money. Many ESL teachers in Argentina teach online as their sole job and income, while others do it to supplement the income they earn from teaching at a language school or from private tutoring.
Teaching English online provides TEFL-certified teachers with the opportunity to make money from the comfort of their own home, with most teachers being able to make anywhere from $5-$20 USD per hour. Hours are flexible and it is up to you how much or how little you teach - you are in total control of your schedule.
If you are looking to ensure students are within your same timezone, check out these three online ESL schools based in Latin America:
- Beyond English - starting pay is $17 USD per hour taught for U.S. teachers
- Open English - earn up to $15 USD per hour
- Latin Hire - compensation varies depending on the total amount of hours you are available to work
A key advantage of teaching online is that you can begin teaching and making money before you move to Argentina. This is a great way to help cover the start-up costs of your move and will ensure that you have an income immediately upon your arrival to Argentina.
Additional Reading: To learn more about how much you can earn from online ESL teaching, please read How Much Money Can I Make Teaching English Online? Need help finding an online teaching platform? Check out Non-Chinese ESL Companies to Teach English Online With.
Expenses for Teaching English in Argentina
There are two categories of expenses that need to be taken into consideration for those looking to teach English in Argentina:
- Start-up costs
- Cost of living
Let's explore each of the two in more detail.
1. Start-Up Costs for Teaching English in Argentina
Start-up costs are expenses you will incur from your arrival in Argentina until you receive your first paycheck and may include things like a security deposit and first month's rent, apartment supplies, transport, groceries, getting your new local cell phone number set up, etc.
Start-up costs should be enough to cover your first month of living in Argentina and will range somewhere between $1,500 and $2,500 USD. This is the minimum amount of savings you should have on hand before leaving home and arriving in Argentina. If you have more, great, but if you have less, you may be setting yourself up for failure from the get-go which can cause unnecessary added stress during an already stressful period of adaption and change.
2. Cost of Living for Teaching English in Argentina
Cost of living refers to everyday monthly expenses you will incur during your time in Argentina. The most popular expenses that fall under this category include:
- Monthly rent expenses
- Utilities (electricity, gas, water bills, etc)
- Food and grocery expenses
- Health insurance
- Internet bill
- Cell phone bill
- Transportation (transit card, ride-sharing services, etc)
- Travel/entertainment expenses
Your cost of living expenses can vary drastically based on where in Argentina you are based. For example, those living in larger cities like Buenos Aires can expect to have a higher cost of living compared to those located in smaller cities or towns. As a general rule of thumb, you should budget $800 - $1,200 USD per month to cover your cost of living.
Argentina is very much a break-even country, meaning you can cover your rent and bills, support yourself, live comfortably, and enjoy your life abroad to the fullest, but you shouldn't expect to save money at the end of each month. If you are hustling and taking on private tutoring lessons and/or teaching English online in addition to your regular teaching schedule, you may increase your ability to save and come out on top at the end of each month.
An accomplished traveler (she's visited 40 countries!), Lynda hails from Melbourne, Australia. Since she joined ITA in 2017, Lynda has become a primary expert on the field of teaching English online. Not only has she published numerous articles on the topic herself, but she has worked with International TEFL Academy alumni around the world to produce an entire library of information and content about teaching English online. Lynda also serves as a primary organizer of ITA's ground-breaking Teach Abroad Film Festival.
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