On August 19, 2020, according to China.com.cn, in a press conference on further interpretation of Stabilizing the Fundamentals of Foreign Trade and Investment, the Ministry of Commerce indicates that government shall relax the restrictive measures for foreigners in the service field. This includes exploring the integration of work permit and work-type residence permit, so as to better practice the reform, opening up and innovation policies in 28 pilot areas.
What’s to be Reformed
As per Xian Guoyi, director of the Department of Service and Trade of the Ministry of Commerce, these measures can be adopted in pilot areas so that expats can live a more comfortable life in China:
Relax the approval right of foreign children’s schools;
Simplify the approval process of foreign-funded travel agencies;
Expand the scope of qualifications for technology import and export operators;
Set up the permanent representative offices in China of the foreign patent agencies, etc.
Opening Up: Easier for Foreigners to Start Businesses and Work
Per the Ministry of Commerce, in the pilot areas, the foreign service providers will be allowed to enter the Chinese market in more fields, where it is stated that:
Encourage foreign institutions to hold foreign-related economic and technological exhibitions independently;
Support the development of cross-border commercial medical insurance products with foreign institutions;
Relax the restrictive measures in the service field, including exploring the integration of work permit and work-type residence permit for foreigners;
Promoting mutual recognition of professional qualifications;
Allow foreign lawyers be employed as foreign legal advisers on a pilot basis;
Qualified foreigners could be allowed to take the qualification examination for patent agent;
Strengthen international cooperation in education, law, finance and other fields;
Build international service trade cooperation parks.
Innovation: Easier Mobile Payment for Foreigners
The pilot areas should vigorously promote the development of online-teaching, digital services, copyright services, and pharmaceutical R & D, where it is mentioned that a pilot program of digital Chinese yuan shall be put into use so as to make it easier for foreigners to use mobile payment in China.
Per the Ministry of Commerce, the above-mentioned measures will be piloted in 28 areas and then nationwide if work well.
List of 28 Pilot Areas
Beijing, Tianjin, Shanghai, Chongqing, Hainan, Dalian, Xiamen, Qingdao, Shenzhen, Shijiazhuang, Changchun, Harbin, Nanjing, Hangzhou, Hefei, Jinan, Wuhan, Guangzhou, Chengdu, Guiyang, Kunming, Xi’an, Urumqi, Suzhou, Weihai, Xiong’an New Area in Hebei, the New Area between Guiyang and Anshun in Guizhou and Xi Xian New area in Shaanxi.
Chinese embassies in other countries may have similar notices in the near future, so read and know the requirements in advance, prepare for the application.
To facilitate gradually resuming personnel exchanges between China and foreign countries, the Chinese Embassy and Consulates-General in the U.K. are ready to accept visa applications through the Chinese Visa Application Service Centres in London, Manchester and Edinburgh as of Aug 18th 2020 from applicants who intend to travel to China for any of the following purposes.
1. British citizen and applicant from any of the 35 other European countries who is holding a valid Foreigner’s Residence Permit of China for work, private matters or family reunion, and needs to go to China for the same visiting purpose as shown on the Residence Permit;
2. Applicant (including accompanying spouse and children under the age of 18) who does not hold a valid Foreigner’s Residence Permit of China for work, private matters or family reunion, but has an “Invitation Letter (PU/TE)” or “Verification Confirmation of Invitation” issued by the Foreign Affairs Office of the provincial government or the provincial department of commerce of the intended place of visit to visit China for economic, trade, scientific, technological, culture or sport purposes;
3. Applicant (including accompanying spouse and children under the age of 18) who does not hold a valid Foreigner’s Residence Permit of China for work, private matters or family reunion, but has obtained “Notification Letter of Foreigners Work Permit” as well as “Invitation Letter (PU/TE)” or “Verification Confirmation of Invitation” to work in China;
4. Applicant who intends to visit China for the following humanitarian reasons:
A. Applicant intending to visit an immediate family member in China (including parents, spouse, children, grandparents, grandchildren) who is in critical medical condition and in need of care, or arrange funeral matters of an immediate family member in China;
Photocopies of a medical certificate or death certificate, proof of relationships (including birth certificate, marriage certificate, Chinese household registration, certificate letters from the local police bureau in China, notarial certificate of kinship, etc.), and an invitation letter from relatives in China are required.
B. Applicant who is spouse or child under the age of 18 of a Chinese citizen or who holds a valid Chinese Foreign Permanent Resident ID Card, and intends to visit China for family reunion;
An invitation letter and photocopies of the Chinese Identity Card or the Chinese Foreign Permanent Resident ID Card, and proof of relationships are required.
C. Applicant (including accompanying spouse and children under the age of 18) intending to visit China to take care of or support his/her Chinese parents;
An invitation letter from the Chinese parent and photocopies of his/her Chinese Identity Card, and proof of relationships are required.
5. Applicant who qualifies for a crew (C) visa.
Applicants are required to fill in the online application form and make an appointment with the nearest Chinese Visa Application Centre before submitting applications in person on the date of appointment. Minor children under the age of 14 are not required to go to the Visa Centre for biometric information collection.
Visa applications for other visiting purposes which are not included above can not be accepted at the moment.
Please be advised that the above are temporary arrangements and subject to further change. Thank you for your understanding and cooperation.
35 other European countries
Albania, Austria, Belgium, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Bulgaria, Croatia, Cyprus, Czech Republic, Denmark, Estonia, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Iceland, Ireland, Italy, Latvia, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Malta, Montenegro, Norway, North Macedonia, Romania, Serbia, Slovakia, Slovenia, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, Poland, Portugal, the Netherlands
Source: Embassy of the People’s Republic of China in the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland
You’ve seen the acronym advertising ESL Jobs, and you’ve done a bit of research. For the curious, ESL stands for English as a Second Language. The Brits know it as TEFL, Teaching English as a Foreign Language. But what will you get out of an ESL job? The simple answer is a lot, but here are the skills that you can develop or use in an ESL career.
1. Problem Solving
Imagine, you’ve planned a class, you know the students and everything is going to be great. During the class, no one’s getting it. The enthusiastic students are tired and everyone’s getting restless. As the teacher, everyone looks to you and you need to rescue the class. You develop an instinct in the class- you think fast and try new things. If that doesn’t work, you keep your cool and find something that works. This is a skill seen time and time again in the classroom, and the ability to stay cool under pressure and think quickly remain invaluable.
2. Communication Skills
Listed time and time again on job descriptions: the applicant must have excellent communication skills. But what does that even mean? The term “communication skills” could be open to interpretation and difficult to prove that you have. But as an ESL teacher, this is a core skill. Imagine setting a task, or giving instructions to classes from 5 to 25, and there’s a catch. English isn’t their first language. Sound difficult? It is at first, but in time the ESL teacher becomes a master at setting tasks, getting results with minimum speech, and body language.
3. Public Speaking
Public speaking is a common fear. The thought of standing up in front of a group of strangers can be a terrifying experience. New ESL teachers also find this a test of nerve. But over time, the ESL teacher overcomes this fear. Standing up in front of a group of eager eyes becomes second nature.
4. Time Management
ESL schedules can be hectic, especially during summer courses and peak months. Time management in class is a skill that teachers develop. ESL teachers learn to focus on what’s important to the learner, moving through the teaching material to meet their needs.
5. Sales Skills
Good sales people are knowledgeable, enthusiastic and passionate. They tailor the product to your needs and at the end of the sales pitch, you’re sold, you want the product! Who was your favourite teacher at school? They were knowledgeable, passionate and at the end of the class you wanted to learn more. The similarities are close. A good teacher helps the student use the language (the product). The teacher’s enthusiasm also makes the student more enthusiastic about the language. After class, these students want to learn more by themselves. This is when the real learning starts.
Per the Cyberspace Administration of China，there are two major causing factors of the campaign.
Due to the COVID-19 epidemic, online teaching platforms have become the main channels for minors to learn from home;
Some of the website platforms show their lack of a sense of responsibility. They’re sheerly driven by interests and have no concerns of the fact that some minors are exposed to harmful and negative information via their platforms.
As per the announcement, the rectification campaign is for all types of online teaching platforms involving minors, which will include the following aspects.
The content of online courses will be subject strict review so as to ensure its correction in guidance;
Comment section with an interactive function shall be set up the platforms, where a system of “review before approval” shall be established accordingly;
Strengthen the ecological management around the web-based course pages to filter harmful contents;
No pop-up windows or clickbait leading to inappropriate content for minors;
No commercial information irrelevant to learning;
It’s prohibited to use online public welfare courses for commercial interests.
Per the responsible person of the administrative department, the authorities have zero-tolerance towards illegal acts harming the rights and interests of minors via online courses. The local cyberspace administration bureau and education departments will further strike against illegal platforms and institutions in accordance with the Chinese law.
Up to now, 31 online teaching platforms, 3 learning and teaching applications, and 13 programs have been dealt with in a serious manner according to law.
Feeling lonely is an inevitable side effect of self-isolating. Here are some tips for teachers living abroad on how to combat loneliness. As much as possible and maintain a healthy emotional and mental outlook:
Reconnect with old friends.
Communicate with colleagues.
Reach out to those in need.
Accept help and support.
Keep up with your self-care.
The best way to tackle feelings of loneliness is. Make an effort to stay connected with friends and family both at home and in your host country.
Use technology to your advantage to help keep in touch, especially with friends and relatives living alone.
Try to arrange a phone or video call whenever you can. Keeping track on a calendar of dates and times when you are free to do so.
Staying indoors for a long time can also mean that, when you connect with family and friends, you find yourself with little to talk about.
It is important to not feel pressured to reach out to people. However, friends should understand that living through a pandemic is no easy challenge since we are all in this together.
If you find yourself being distant from others, remember to not feel guilty about this. But instead do what is best for your mental health.
Communicate with colleagues.
Missing out on talking with colleagues regularly throughout the day can intensify feelings of loneliness.
Whereas before you could simply chat with a fellow teacher about work or what you saw on TV the night before. This essential social interaction has now been dramatically minimized as teachers work remotely.
Communication is easy to achieve throughout the working day by video. Calling coworkers to discuss your current teaching plans and ideas for the future.
Talk about something other than work, arrange a call during your breaks or in the evening to help stay connected and maintain a work-life balance.
Use this opportunity to catch up with some colleagues or friends while also keeping your distance.
Reach out to those in need.
If you think your family and friends are struggling, assure them that you’ll be there to speak to them and provide advice when they’re feeling overwhelmed and lonely.
However, as a teacher abroad, your family members may be hundreds, or even thousands, of miles away. Helping someone else’s family in times of need is a great way to fit in some much needed social contact and help others combat their own struggles of loneliness.
As you venture out for your weekly grocery run, reach out to neighbors or colleagues who are quarantined and ask if they need a few essentials.
As long as you remember to keep your distance, you shouldn’t be putting your health at risk.
Completing a good deed for others will help boost morale and lift a weight off the shoulders of those who are in need.
Helping out is also a great way to make new relationships while in quarantine.
If you’ve never spoken to your neighbors before, try leaving a friendly note and offering some encouragement.
If you’re a teacher living in an apartment building, this can be a great way to get to know a large group of people and share resources.
If you’re seriously worried about your mental health, it is vital to reach out to those who can help.
If you feel uncomfortable talking to a friend or family member about this, there are trained professionals who can help by listening and guide you to means of navigating and managing your emotions during this uncertain time.
Making sure you have easy access to your host country’s healthcare system and services is extremely important during this time.
For example, in some countries, you’ll need to have some kind of health insurance plan in place so you won’t incur any out of pocket fees when accessing local health services or facilities. Whether it’s for physical or mental health purposes.
Finally, don’t forget to give yourself some love and support too.
Self-care can be anything from exercising to dancing around in your apartment to good tunes or starting a daily journal.
The idea is to do something nice for yourself every day. This might be hard at first, but it’s so worth it.
It doesn’t have to be big either. But regularly taking care of yourself will boost your happiness and strengthen your relationship with yourself at the same time.
So go ahead and try to do more things that make you feel better and whole.
Draw, write, dance, meditate, exercise or eat a nutritious meal. Commit to at least one act of self-care a day.
Stay strong and keep at it!
Making the first step to reaching out for help can be a difficult one. But it is important to not suffer in silence from mental health issues that may arise, or be heightened as a result of self-isolation.
I know it’s hard to believe – a teaching job with a decent salary and
enough time to travel and explore? I thought so too when my friend told
me about his experiences while teaching English abroad. But then I did
some more research and decided it really was worth a try. Among other
possibilities, I chose to teach English in China.
China? Well, with a huge population, a growing demand for learning
English, and a rich culture, China offers both the job opportunities and
the excitement any teacher would wish for.
As a South
African you are from the start in a very good position to become a
teacher in China. Being able to speak English as a native language is a
valuable asset nowadays and more and more South Africans are using that
advantage to find satisfying teaching jobs in China. There is a large
South African expat community there and you may even contact some of the
members if you have any questions about their life abroad.
Even though as a South African you enjoy a wide range of choice regarding the countries you can teach in, let me give you a few reasons why teaching in China was a dream come true for me and why it may also be the same for you.
1. English Teachers are in High Demand
China is booming, and with its rapidly growing middle class, many
people are looking to improve their lives and the lives of their
children. Speaking English can open many doors for them. That’s where
you come in.
There are so many places where you can
teach: kindergartens, high schools, international schools, language
schools… Even Chinese companies are hiring teachers to help their
There are certain requirements you must meet to be able to teach in China, and you will, of course, need to obtain an employment visa (Z-visa), but this is a relatively straightforward process. Make some effort and, depending on your contract and the city you choose, you can enjoy benefits such as free housing, free flights or a housing allowance.
2. Travel Opportunities are Fantastic
Yes, after a while you will have time to travel around the
country and experience it like no tourist can. China has so much to
Yes, after a while you will have time to travel around the country and experience it like no tourist can. China has so much to offer!
There are the well-known big cities, of course. But this country is so much more. Its Yunnan and Shaanxi provinces are the home of the most exciting hikes and remains of ancient cities. Guilin and Yangshuo offer backpackers the chance to explore hot springs, mud caves, and the famous rice fields, all while staying in nearby villages. Whatever province you choose, you are guaranteed something spectacular!
3. You Can Learn a New Language
They say that Chinese is extremely difficult to learn. However, once
you move there, you’ll realise that it’s not quite the case. If you’re
willing to put in some work, immerse yourself in the language every day
and communicate with the locals, you can pick up a lot in a short time.
Start with the basics, practise regularly with your friends or students, and you will move on to more complex things soon.
And anyway – wouldn’t this new ability look impressive in your CV?
4. The Food is Amazing
Every province in China has its distinct style of cooking, so the
variety of dishes is unbelievable. There is something for everyone. For
example, noodles and dumplings are typical for Northern China, sweet and
light food for Eastern China, while in the central part they mostly
like really spicy dishes.
You will also learn a lot about customs and etiquette in Chinese dining, which may be quite different than what you’re used to. All in all, even the food in China is an adventure!
5. The Students Are Fun
For the most part, the students in China are enthusiastic, fun-loving and respectful of their teachers.
it is a bit of a myth that they are really well-behaved in class. A lot
of them see their ‘’foreign teacher class’’ as an opportunity to take a
break from the pressure of their other classes. But this isn’t a bad
thing. It just means that you can do your job in a more relaxed manner,
with more fun games!
Teaching English in China is a lot of work, especially in the beginning, but it is also hugely rewarding. Besides being excellent for your career, it also comes with some benefits that teachers in many other countries don’t have. With some effort put in, you may have an unforgettable life experience!
Teaching abroad and traveling are popular choices among people who have finished university, but aren’t quite ready to enter the working world. Both are valuable experiences that open your eyes to a new culture and way of life, but which is best? When it comes to exploring the Middle Kingdom, teaching English arguably offers more advantages over traveling. Here are some of the main benefits of teaching in China offers over tourism.
Ancient history, age-old traditions, and cultural superstitions combine to make Chinese culture both rich and complex. Visitors get a mere glimpse of this 5,000-year-old civilization, while those teaching in China have the chance to delve deeper and experience more of this fascinating country.
Living and teaching in China, you will discover fascinating cultural differences and language through everyday tasks such as going to the supermarket, commuting and visiting the bank. Living in a typical apartment in a local neighborhood, you truly will experience how the locals live.
Between life in and outside of work, English teachers in China meet a wide range of people. From your students to your colleagues, to the street food seller you pass on your commute, your daily routine opens you up to interacting with people from all walks of life. Forming friendships, discovering the language and working with locals will help you better understand and appreciate the culture than perhaps possible as a tourist.
Though teaching in China is growing in popularity, many remain under the impression it’s simply for those who wish to begin a teaching career, and may instead choose to travel.
Of course, teaching abroad is extremely advantageous for anyone planning to teach in their home country. Though, what many don’t realize is that it is an enriching experience that equips you with skills useful to almost any industry.
International experience is becoming increasingly sought after by employers. Living and teaching abroad not only gives you this but also the ability to adapt to a new culture, way of life and working environment. When competing against hundreds of applicants with equally impressive credentials, such experience certainly helps you stand out from the crowd.
If you’re still not sure about the teaching, consider the variety of skills you can gain from it. Public speaking, adaptability, problem solving, and time management are just a few skills teachers use that are sought by employers across the board. Furthermore, foreign language skills are highly desired in many industries. The exposure to native speakers, immersive environment and appealing schedule teaching in China provides, make it ideal for language learning.
An Exciting Way of Life
The reality of teaching in China is just as exciting as it sounds. Even mundane tasks like popping to the shop, taking the bus, or commuting are interesting in a foreign culture. You might have traveled across the world to work, but work is only part of the adventure. There’s always something to learn in your new environment and whether you’re in the classroom or exploring, it’s equally enthralling.
This excitement of daily life is augmented by the appreciation English teachers in China receive from their colleagues and students. The respect for teachers and interest in foreigners among general Chinese society means you will be welcomed into your new home and workplace and feel valued. Moreover, English teachers in China have the opportunity to make a real impact on students’ lives. English education is extremely important in China and the exposure to your native accent and culture will help them hugely. This truly rewarding experience helps you give to the community in a way that is simply not possible for tourists.
Get The Best of Both Worlds by Teaching in China
Foreign English teachers are in particularly high demand in China, making it a very appealing destination to teach in. Long-term English teachers in China receive generous salaries in exchange for teaching an appealing schedule. Salary and working hours depend of course on location, but English teachers in China can earn around 5000 – 17,000 RMB per month and teach for 15-30 hours per week. In addition, most schools provide free accommodation close to the campus, giving English teachers in China with a comfortable lifestyle.
Long-term English teachers in China benefit from several national holidays throughout the year. This, combined with generous salaries and minimal expenses easily allows teachers in China to get the best of both worlds; earning while travelling. A 7-day holiday in October, 4-6 weeks in January and various long weekends thro
The Flexibility of Teaching in China
The beauty of teaching in China is the flexibility it offers. If you, like many others, realise towards the end of your contract you haven’t had enough, it’s easy to extend. Your school is likely to offer you a renewed contract, sometimes with a pay rise. Should you decide it’s time to move on, you’ll find that schools across the country are looking for teachers. With some TEFL experience under your belt, you’re sure to find a suitable role.
You may even find teaching in China has whetted your appetite for teaching abroad and a new challenge. Several of our previous teachers have returned to China, while others have embarked on an adventure in a different country. Whatever you choose to do after, you’ll find that teaching in China opens so many doors!
throughout the year means that whether you want a shortstop in Japan or a few weeks in Thailand, you’re sure to get the chance!