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Combining Teaching with Travel

As a Geography teacher, Amy combines the love of her subject with a passion for travelling. One of the advantages of being on supply is that you can take holiday time to travel abroad. 

Some supply teachers even work for six months and then travel for six months. I met a science teacher in London who did this. He was originally from New Zealand. Being registered with Protocol Education meant that he could travel for half the time that he was living in the UK. He planned to do this for at least 5 years, by which point he would have covered every continent!

Remember that if you are on short term supply, you won't get paid for the holidays. You will need to plan your finances. Put aside around 20% of your wages to cover holiday periods and any time you might be off sick. Open a separate bank account for your travel fund. You can set up a direct debit on a monthly or weekly basis for say £100 towards your travel.

If you are travelling in Asia, Africa or South America, you will find that the cost of living is so much cheaper that you can do more. You can travel for much less than it would cost you to actually stay in the UK. But always have a contingency in case of emergencies and make sure that you have good travel insurance.

If you are a serious traveller, you might want to rent a room Monday to Friday only, or term time only. This means that you won't have to pay for rent during the summer months while you are away. If you secure a contract with holiday pay, you can basically get paid to travel!

Teaching in Developing Countries

During my time teaching in London, I decided that I wanted to combine my love of teaching with my passion for travel. I made the decision to work on a voluntary project in Kigali, Rwanda. I booked my trip through GVN (Global Volunteer Network). You have to make a donation or fund raise to the local charity in order to enrol on the programme.

In Rwanda, I had the opportunity to teach children in a Post-Genocide setting where many pupils are living in poverty. Some of them were orphans due to the genocide and many of their parents were living with HIV/AIDS, some as a result of rape. The teaching experience was very different to teaching in the UK, but was so rewarding. I taught large groups of children, many of mixed ages and abilities. At one point I had a four year old and a fourteen year old in the same session! These children were so enthusiastic and eager to learn that my love of teaching was fuelled to a level that I could never have imagined!

If you want to teach abroad, particularly in a developing country, prepare for basics. Computers and photocopiers will be no-where to be seen. It is unlikely that you will have any training or scheme of work to follow. Be innovative and create a fun learning environment. This will teach you how to be resourceful and value what we have here in the UK.

Teach your Way around the World!

Teaching is one of the most flexible careers that allows international travel that I can think of. UK trained teachers are native English speakers are in high demand world wide.  If you really want to see the world and change it, I believe that there is no better career than teaching.

The TES website is full of international positions and gets updated on a weekly basis. Most long term international positions commence in August and are for one or two year contracts. There are also some fantastic EFL (English as a Foreign Language) positions available.

South Korea is the latest cultural and financial 'hot spot' for travelling teachers. This is because the pay is high and cost of living relatively low. You can actually see the world and save as you do it. Japan is another place where teachers are well paid and working conditions are good. A friend of mine went to Tokyo for a year. However, that was 8 years ago and she never came back!!!

Travel and Teach with Protocol Education

As a committed teacher and passionate traveller, I find the benefits of being with Protocol Education mean that I can combine the two things that I love the most.  I have never been without work since enrolling with Protocol Education. I find that if I want to travel for just a few weeks, even in term time, I can be accommodated.

Long term supply with Protocol Education gives the benefit of relationship and rapport building, and still there is plenty of travel time in the holidays. My plan is to remain enrolled with Protocol Education to teach in the UK, while I book my international adventures. This means that I don't have to worry about getting a job when I get home from a trip!

Remember when you are registered with Protocol Education you can receive discounts with certain travel companies like Topdeck, Contiki, Busabout and others. Email Megan ( for more information and to get the promocodes. 

Tags: AmyTR, West-Midlands, London, travel

Category: Australian Teachers

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