December 11, 2018, 03:58:18 AM


Author Topic: Real ESL Salaries in Korea Plummet 45% in 20 Years!  (Read 2639 times)

Offline kobayashi

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Re: Real ESL Salaries in Korea Plummet 45% in 20 Years!
« Reply #20 on: October 20, 2018, 12:39:48 AM »
salaries in korea are pathetic these days. yeah you get a free apartment, and the cost might not have increased FOR YOU, but it has for the employer, so what happens? the quality of the apartment decreases. people nowadays getting placed in old, cheap apartments, or having their apartments downsized, which is what happened to a friend of mine. another friend of mine used to live a 10 minute walk from her school. landlord wanted to increase the rent, so the school moved her all the way across town to the outskirts where the cheap apartments are. 10 minute walk turned into a 5 minute walk to the bus stop then a 20-25 minute bus ride during rush hour.

2.2 million Won a month = 13,750 Won per hour, which is about US$12. including housing of 400k that would work out to 16,250 per hour or US$14.

meanwhile the cost of living in SK continues to skyrocket.

but ... you get a free apartment. well so do i. and around 3 million Won a month, for teaching 10 classes a week here in China. i save every month what most of you over in SK earn. that's because a cellphone data plan here costs 9,500 KRW per month for 5GB data, 15,000 KRW if you want unlimited data. how much does it cost in Korea? more like 50,000 these days. bus costs 160 KRW, subway around 3-400 KRW (and no, there aren't any missing zeroes, those are hundreds). it's 3 times that in Korea - 1,250 Won base fare for the subway, with a card. if you transfer or go anything other than a short distance you're probably paying around 1,450 Won, which is the average price i used to pay.

decided to go out to a western restaurant the other day and treat myself, had a burger with fries and 2 beers, came to a whopping 88 Yuan (14,500 KRW). and this was at an expensive place. if you eat a chinese person, you can go out to a restaurant and get a bowl of noodles for 10-15 Yuan (2-2,500 KRW). Chinese BBQ is CHEAP as hell too, went out the other night with some friends, must have polished off about 15-20 skewers and at least a 6 pack of beer, total cost per person was less than 100 Yuan (16,000 KRW).

probably only work around 6-7 hours a day (with lunch during those hours), school doesn't really care when i arrive or leave, free to set my own schedule according to when classes are. got a late class as the first one? i'll usually roll in around 9. start classes early? I'm usually off around 2:30-3:00pm. 2-3 months paid vacation a year including national holidays.

i'm not saying all that to brag, i'm saying that because you could have all that too. jobs here are so abundant it's ridiculous. a week or two ago i posted some random question in the FB group for my city, how to get to a certain place or something like that. over the next week i had 3 people PM me randomly on facebook asking me if i wanted to apply for jobs they had open. 18-20,000 Yuan a month, 2-3,000 Yuan a month housing allowance (Tier 2 cities, Ningbo, Chengdu, and can't remember the 3rd one).

but people don't want to move over here and be treated like actual human beings, they'd rather stick in their dumb public school job teaching 22 classes a week, putting up with the world's worst behaved children, co-teachers who boggle the mind as to how they actually graduated from high school let alone college let alone became a teacher, racist VPs and Principals, being constantly reminded that you're lower in status than even the custodial staff simply because you're a foreigner. or i guess those 10 days of vacation per year at your hagwon are really appealing to you? all because 'chinese are so rude, i would never move to china!' (except, they aren't, and are much more polite and much more friendlier than koreans.)

but hey, free apartment in korea! yaaaaaaaay!

« Last Edit: October 20, 2018, 12:46:45 AM by kobayashi »

Online Cyanea

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Re: Real ESL Salaries in Korea Plummet 45% in 20 Years!
« Reply #21 on: October 20, 2018, 03:28:23 AM »
salaries in korea are pathetic these days. yeah you get a free apartment, and the cost might not have increased FOR YOU, but it has for the employer, so what happens? the quality of the apartment decreases. people nowadays getting placed in old, cheap apartments, or having their apartments downsized, which is what happened to a friend of mine. another friend of mine used to live a 10 minute walk from her school. landlord wanted to increase the rent, so the school moved her all the way across town to the outskirts where the cheap apartments are. 10 minute walk turned into a 5 minute walk to the bus stop then a 20-25 minute bus ride during rush hour.

2.2 million Won a month = 13,750 Won per hour, which is about US$12. including housing of 400k that would work out to 16,250 per hour or US$14.

meanwhile the cost of living in SK continues to skyrocket.

but ... you get a free apartment. well so do i. and around 3 million Won a month, for teaching 10 classes a week here in China. i save every month what most of you over in SK earn. that's because a cellphone data plan here costs 9,500 KRW per month for 5GB data, 15,000 KRW if you want unlimited data. how much does it cost in Korea? more like 50,000 these days. bus costs 160 KRW, subway around 3-400 KRW (and no, there aren't any missing zeroes, those are hundreds). it's 3 times that in Korea - 1,250 Won base fare for the subway, with a card. if you transfer or go anything other than a short distance you're probably paying around 1,450 Won, which is the average price i used to pay.

decided to go out to a western restaurant the other day and treat myself, had a burger with fries and 2 beers, came to a whopping 88 Yuan (14,500 KRW). and this was at an expensive place. if you eat a chinese person, you can go out to a restaurant and get a bowl of noodles for 10-15 Yuan (2-2,500 KRW). Chinese BBQ is CHEAP as hell too, went out the other night with some friends, must have polished off about 15-20 skewers and at least a 6 pack of beer, total cost per person was less than 100 Yuan (16,000 KRW).

probably only work around 6-7 hours a day (with lunch during those hours), school doesn't really care when i arrive or leave, free to set my own schedule according to when classes are. got a late class as the first one? i'll usually roll in around 9. start classes early? I'm usually off around 2:30-3:00pm. 2-3 months paid vacation a year including national holidays.

i'm not saying all that to brag, i'm saying that because you could have all that too. jobs here are so abundant it's ridiculous. a week or two ago i posted some random question in the FB group for my city, how to get to a certain place or something like that. over the next week i had 3 people PM me randomly on facebook asking me if i wanted to apply for jobs they had open. 18-20,000 Yuan a month, 2-3,000 Yuan a month housing allowance (Tier 2 cities, Ningbo, Chengdu, and can't remember the 3rd one).

but people don't want to move over here and be treated like actual human beings, they'd rather stick in their dumb public school job teaching 22 classes a week, putting up with the world's worst behaved children, co-teachers who boggle the mind as to how they actually graduated from high school let alone college let alone became a teacher, racist VPs and Principals, being constantly reminded that you're lower in status than even the custodial staff simply because you're a foreigner. or i guess those 10 days of vacation per year at your hagwon are really appealing to you? all because 'chinese are so rude, i would never move to china!' (except, they aren't, and are much more polite and much more friendlier than koreans.)

but hey, free apartment in korea! yaaaaaaaay!

+1

I assume you've got a professors job there? MA tesol requirement?
Catch my drift?

Offline SPQR

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Re: Real ESL Salaries in Korea Plummet 45% in 20 Years!
« Reply #22 on: October 20, 2018, 07:12:13 AM »

Offline Life Improvement

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Re: Real ESL Salaries in Korea Plummet 45% in 20 Years!
« Reply #23 on: October 20, 2018, 07:16:29 AM »
USD3373/month

Adjusted for inflation that's $5,514.75, meaning ‎₩6,237,537.75 a month.

What kind of hagwons start newbs at 6.2 these days?

A 45% drop would be 3.4. Not many begin at that or even work their way up to that.

A more accurate thread title would be "Real ESL Salaries in Korea Plummet 65% in 20 Years!".

Online eggieguffer

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Re: Real ESL Salaries in Korea Plummet 45% in 20 Years!
« Reply #24 on: October 20, 2018, 07:28:01 AM »
salaries in korea are pathetic these days. yeah you get a free apartment, and the cost might not have increased FOR YOU, but it has for the employer, so what happens? the quality of the apartment decreases. people nowadays getting placed in old, cheap apartments, or having their apartments downsized, which is what happened to a friend of mine. another friend of mine used to live a 10 minute walk from her school. landlord wanted to increase the rent, so the school moved her all the way across town to the outskirts where the cheap apartments are. 10 minute walk turned into a 5 minute walk to the bus stop then a 20-25 minute bus ride during rush hour.

2.2 million Won a month = 13,750 Won per hour, which is about US$12. including housing of 400k that would work out to 16,250 per hour or US$14.

meanwhile the cost of living in SK continues to skyrocket.

but ... you get a free apartment. well so do i. and around 3 million Won a month, for teaching 10 classes a week here in China. i save every month what most of you over in SK earn. that's because a cellphone data plan here costs 9,500 KRW per month for 5GB data, 15,000 KRW if you want unlimited data. how much does it cost in Korea? more like 50,000 these days. bus costs 160 KRW, subway around 3-400 KRW (and no, there aren't any missing zeroes, those are hundreds). it's 3 times that in Korea - 1,250 Won base fare for the subway, with a card. if you transfer or go anything other than a short distance you're probably paying around 1,450 Won, which is the average price i used to pay.

decided to go out to a western restaurant the other day and treat myself, had a burger with fries and 2 beers, came to a whopping 88 Yuan (14,500 KRW). and this was at an expensive place. if you eat a chinese person, you can go out to a restaurant and get a bowl of noodles for 10-15 Yuan (2-2,500 KRW). Chinese BBQ is CHEAP as hell too, went out the other night with some friends, must have polished off about 15-20 skewers and at least a 6 pack of beer, total cost per person was less than 100 Yuan (16,000 KRW).

probably only work around 6-7 hours a day (with lunch during those hours), school doesn't really care when i arrive or leave, free to set my own schedule according to when classes are. got a late class as the first one? i'll usually roll in around 9. start classes early? I'm usually off around 2:30-3:00pm. 2-3 months paid vacation a year including national holidays.

i'm not saying all that to brag, i'm saying that because you could have all that too. jobs here are so abundant it's ridiculous. a week or two ago i posted some random question in the FB group for my city, how to get to a certain place or something like that. over the next week i had 3 people PM me randomly on facebook asking me if i wanted to apply for jobs they had open. 18-20,000 Yuan a month, 2-3,000 Yuan a month housing allowance (Tier 2 cities, Ningbo, Chengdu, and can't remember the 3rd one).

but people don't want to move over here and be treated like actual human beings, they'd rather stick in their dumb public school job teaching 22 classes a week, putting up with the world's worst behaved children, co-teachers who boggle the mind as to how they actually graduated from high school let alone college let alone became a teacher, racist VPs and Principals, being constantly reminded that you're lower in status than even the custodial staff simply because you're a foreigner. or i guess those 10 days of vacation per year at your hagwon are really appealing to you? all because 'chinese are so rude, i would never move to china!' (except, they aren't, and are much more polite and much more friendlier than koreans.)

but hey, free apartment in korea! yaaaaaaaay!

How come you work 6-7 hours a day but have ten classes a week. Are the classes three hours long or something?

Online eggieguffer

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Re: Real ESL Salaries in Korea Plummet 45% in 20 Years!
« Reply #25 on: October 20, 2018, 07:42:28 AM »
Quote
A more accurate thread title would be "Real ESL Salaries in Korea, for people who want to convert their won salaries into American dollars, plummet 65% in 20 Years!".

FIFY

Offline Life Improvement

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Re: Real ESL Salaries in Korea Plummet 45% in 20 Years!
« Reply #26 on: October 20, 2018, 08:52:54 AM »
The American dollar is the world standard. Stable with not much inflation. Unlike the British pound or South African rand, it doesn't lose value quickly.

Prices in Korea have more than doubled in the past 20 years. Taxis, food, clothes, haircuts, etc., etc.

So, yes, there has been a sizable drop in real terms.

Online JNM

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Re: Real ESL Salaries in Korea Plummet 45% in 20 Years!
« Reply #27 on: October 20, 2018, 08:53:45 AM »
Quote
A more accurate thread title would be "Real ESL Salaries in Korea, for people who want to convert their won salaries into American dollars, plummet 65% in 20 Years!".

FIFY
I think using a commodity is a better metric to compare than any fiat currency.
GBP is down heavily, and USD is up... It doesn't impact buying power much if you are earning KRW.
Gold is good, but tonne of rice has less volatility.

Online eggieguffer

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Re: Real ESL Salaries in Korea Plummet 45% in 20 Years!
« Reply #28 on: October 20, 2018, 09:03:48 AM »
Quote
A more accurate thread title would be "Real ESL Salaries in Korea, for people who want to convert their won salaries into American dollars, plummet 65% in 20 Years!".

FIFY
I think using a commodity is a better metric to compare than any fiat currency.
GBP is down heavily, and USD is up... It doesn't impact buying power much if you are earning KRW.
Gold is good, but tonne of rice has less volatility.

True, you might as well tell people how much gold their won is worth these days, it'd have just as much relevance to someone from the UK as dollars.

Offline Life Improvement

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Re: Real ESL Salaries in Korea Plummet 45% in 20 Years!
« Reply #29 on: October 20, 2018, 09:06:34 AM »
The base fare for a taxi in Seoul is likely to increase by 1,000 won to 4,000 won next year, while the nighttime surcharge will begin one hour earlier at 11 p.m.

Every year prices go up. That's why it's important to make more and more money. Most people in the world are getting paid more (on both a nominal and adjusted for inflation basis). Just not in teaching English overseas. True fact. Look it up. For example, prices in Thailand are going up ... but at the same time Thai salaries are going up a lot, too. Doubled in the past ten years. But look at the salaries of Western English teachers there. Seem to be valued less compared to before. It's sad.

Offline Life Improvement

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Re: Real ESL Salaries in Korea Plummet 45% in 20 Years!
« Reply #30 on: October 20, 2018, 09:14:38 AM »
Korean salaries are going up. Minimum wage rises every year, as do salaries overall. The average Korean salary is now over 3m a month. Nurses make that. Bus drivers make that. Car drivers make that. Some janitors make that. People with food stands I talked to make that. 20 years ago Westerners with a university degree teaching English were raking in way more than the average local, but that doesn't seem to be the case anymore. The disparity is disappearing.

Online Cyanea

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Re: Real ESL Salaries in Korea Plummet 45% in 20 Years!
« Reply #31 on: October 20, 2018, 10:41:27 AM »
Most people in the world are getting paid more (on both a nominal and adjusted for inflation basis). Just not in teaching English overseas.

The problem is that facebook came along and suddenly accelerated the numbers of people taking up teaching, which co-incided with the big recession of 2009. It was a perfect storm and wages have been stagnant ever since.

Up until then, esl was relatively little-known. It was growing, but very slowly and gradually. What was once a fringe pursuit for the adventurous has become a fairly normal rite of passage for most grads.
« Last Edit: October 20, 2018, 10:43:21 AM by Cyanea »
Catch my drift?

Offline kobayashi

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Re: Real ESL Salaries in Korea Plummet 45% in 20 Years!
« Reply #32 on: October 21, 2018, 12:40:28 AM »
How come you work 6-7 hours a day but have ten classes a week. Are the classes three hours long or something?

45 minute classes. the rest is office hours.

Online eggieguffer

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Re: Real ESL Salaries in Korea Plummet 45% in 20 Years!
« Reply #33 on: October 21, 2018, 02:36:18 AM »
How come you work 6-7 hours a day but have ten classes a week. Are the classes three hours long or something?

45 minute classes. the rest is office hours.

So 90 minutes a day teaching and four and a half to five and a half hours a day desk warming?

Offline VanIslander

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Re: Real ESL Salaries in Korea Plummet 45% in 20 Years!
« Reply #34 on: October 21, 2018, 02:43:29 AM »
A basic hagwon of elementary school students in hundreds of towns and small cities has work hours from 2 or 3 to 8 or 9, 20 hours of work a week, maybe 30 including all prep time. And it's easy to save $1000 a month.

I'd be shocked if you could find much better basic positions internationally outside of the desert Islamic countries.

Offline Thomas Mc

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Re: Real ESL Salaries in Korea Plummet 45% in 20 Years!
« Reply #35 on: October 21, 2018, 12:14:14 PM »
As an aside I chuckled when I read the op. You do realise many posters on here weren’t eveN born in 1996.  :P

I read recently that American unemployment was at an all time low. More vacancies than applicants that report said. However the same report said that wage growth was very disappointing.

It could be that people are working, yes, but in low quality jobs. Thus the steady stream of newbies continues.

Online eggieguffer

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Re: Real ESL Salaries in Korea Plummet 45% in 20 Years!
« Reply #36 on: October 21, 2018, 12:57:42 PM »
As an aside I chuckled when I read the op. You do realise many posters on here weren’t eveN born in 1996.  :P

I read recently that American unemployment was at an all time low. More vacancies than applicants that report said. However the same report said that wage growth was very disappointing.

It could be that people are working, yes, but in low quality jobs. Thus the steady stream of newbies continues.

Actually I read a book recently called 'No couches in Korea' by a guy who came here to teach around that time and he was on 1.6 mil for a seven day week In Busan. Plus split shifts.

Offline Life Improvement

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Re: Real ESL Salaries in Korea Plummet 45% in 20 Years!
« Reply #37 on: October 21, 2018, 01:19:12 PM »
1.6 mil

With the exchange rate that'd be about $2k, which in today's money would be $3,269.94, meaning 3.7 mil. Not too bad. But the OP said he got 2.8 mil his first year (also in 1996). So was the author in a job with short working hours each day? Privates paid 50,000 won an hour at that time from what I heard and there was an unlimited supply. Which would apply pressure on hagwons to offer decent remuneration I would imagine.

Offline Life Improvement

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Re: Real ESL Salaries in Korea Plummet 45% in 20 Years!
« Reply #38 on: October 21, 2018, 01:23:48 PM »
Thomas Mc, where you're from:

UK pay growth rises to 3.1%, the highest in almost a decade

Competition for workers helps push up wages, as unemployment stays at 4% – a 43-year low


Where I'm from:

With the unemployment rate at its lowest level in nearly 50 years, American workers are finally starting to see their paychecks grow a little faster.

Weekly wages rose at an annualized rate of 3.3% in the third quarter, the Labor Department announced Tuesday, which beats the 2.6% increase in inflation over the same period.

Offline SPQR

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Re: Real ESL Salaries in Korea Plummet 45% in 20 Years!
« Reply #39 on: October 21, 2018, 02:06:31 PM »
1.6 mil

With the exchange rate that'd be about $2k, which in today's money would be $3,269.94, meaning 3.7 mil. Not too bad. But the OP said he got 2.8 mil his first year (also in 1996). So was the author in a job with short working hours each day? Privates paid 50,000 won an hour at that time from what I heard and there was an unlimited supply. Which would apply pressure on hagwons to offer decent remuneration I would imagine.

My hagwon was a little different.  We got paid by the hour.  We could easily do
adults at 6:30 and 7:30 in the morning.  Another adult class at 11:00AM and then
kids from like 3:00-9:00PM.  We also got farmed out to elementary schools on
Wednesdays. (Which was illegal, but my school did it nonetheless.)  At our peak
time we had around eighteen teachers and were also working Sundays for double
time.  We could easily make 2.8M.  Like I said, we were always tired. Add to that
boozing and cavorting and I am amazed that we survived.