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Re: Life after teaching in Korea
« Reply #40 on: March 13, 2019, 06:30:13 pm »
I was living in California until 2013. I was paying $850 (US) a month to live in a tiny apartment. Moved to Korea and got a tiny apartment for free and ended up making about $100 more a month than I had been in California after expenses.

After 5 years in Korea I moved to New Zealand. It is impossible to find full-time work here, I have a part time job but it barely pays the bills and I'm basically making half of what I made in Korea and paying rent on top of that. I'm doing a graduate degree program but when I finish I'll be making way the hell less than I was in Korea and still paying rent. Jobs here just don't pay that much.

A lot of people say that ESL salaries suck in Korea, but these people probably haven't had to look for a job back home lately. Wages suck everywhere and the cost of housing keeps going up way more than wages do--ask Koreans and they'll say the same. Just because average salaries are high doesn't mean that the average waygook in Korea can go back home and walk into a $50,000+ a year job. If people could make that kind of money back home they sure as hell wouldn't be working in Korea.

I keep saying over and over again that everyone calculates what they'd make when they think about teaching in Korea. But a lot of you live in this fantasy land where there are all these hidden high-paying jobs back home, and people are making a "bad decision" by coming to Korea to make "crappy stagnant wages." Usually the same people rattling on about how it's so easy to walk into a W5,000,000 a month job in Korea.
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Re: Life after teaching in Korea
« Reply #41 on: March 14, 2019, 09:21:03 am »
My wife and I went to Korea in 2013 and stayed until 2015. You don't think about it at the time but your whole life is kind of set up for you--it's really a charmed life. You have what is, by most standards, a pretty relaxing work schedule with ample vacation time. You have a free apartment, your health insurance is taken care of. Public transportation gets you pretty much anywhere you want to go. And you know what else? Pretty much all your friends have the same schedule as you and no one has kids so there's always time to do something fun.

Coming back to the States in 2015 sucked because the 2016 presidential election was just heating up...and we all know how that went. At the same time, we struggled to find relevant jobs and overall figured out that wanting to be home can be a lot more romantic than actually being home.

Over three years later, I have a dull but good-paying office job at an engineering consulting firm and my wife works part time at a 3D printing company--two more random things to add to a resume that already features EPIK. We just bought a house and have an awesome 10 month old boy. Also, I published a book about our time in South Korea as Native English Teachers, soooo you could say we're doing alright for ourselves! It's called The Waygook Book: A Foreigner's Guide to South Korea. Give it a look! It'll be interesting to see how your waygook experience differed or matched mine.

Here's a link to the book:
https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/0578449811?pf_rd_p=1cac67ce-697a-47be-b2f5-9ae91aab54f2&pf_rd_r=ANW0CS5E11WH4A0FGK8X


  • Davey
  • Moderator - LVL 3

    • 1816

    • February 01, 2010, 01:36:20 pm
Re: Life after teaching in Korea
« Reply #42 on: March 14, 2019, 01:17:48 pm »
I was living in California until 2013. I was paying $850 (US) a month to live in a tiny apartment. Moved to Korea and got a tiny apartment for free and ended up making about $100 more a month than I had been in California after expenses.

After 5 years in Korea I moved to New Zealand. It is impossible to find full-time work here, I have a part time job but it barely pays the bills and I'm basically making half of what I made in Korea and paying rent on top of that. I'm doing a graduate degree program but when I finish I'll be making way the hell less than I was in Korea and still paying rent. Jobs here just don't pay that much.

A lot of people say that ESL salaries suck in Korea, but these people probably haven't had to look for a job back home lately. Wages suck everywhere and the cost of housing keeps going up way more than wages do--ask Koreans and they'll say the same. Just because average salaries are high doesn't mean that the average waygook in Korea can go back home and walk into a $50,000+ a year job. If people could make that kind of money back home they sure as hell wouldn't be working in Korea.

I keep saying over and over again that everyone calculates what they'd make when they think about teaching in Korea. But a lot of you live in this fantasy land where there are all these hidden high-paying jobs back home, and people are making a "bad decision" by coming to Korea to make "crappy stagnant wages." Usually the same people rattling on about how it's so easy to walk into a W5,000,000 a month job in Korea.


I agree---these well-paying jobs back home really depend on the job market and obviously what you studied and theskills you possess.  Additionally, to live like you do in Korea if you're from a metropolitan city back home you'd have to make a pretty decent salary (maybe around $60k a year in Toronto, Canada). 

Teaching overseas, especially in Asia, is great for those who graduated with degrees that aren't attractive in the job market.  Perhaps ave some fun first, then pay off the debt, then use your disposable income to invest and/or get education/skills that'll make you attractive in the job market.


------------------------------------------
Search this site using Google by typing, "site:waygook.org [search term]," especially during peak hours. Alternatively, use the site's search function.

EPIK: VISA, RENEWING, PENSION, ETC:

http://waygook.org/index.php/topic,2614.0.html


  • sweetkat
  • Veteran

    • 188

    • March 02, 2011, 01:35:29 pm
    • Korea
Re: Life after teaching in Korea
« Reply #43 on: March 15, 2019, 03:20:05 am »
I left Korea in 2015 after EPIK cutbacks and being there since 2007.  I moved to China.
I am very much happier here even though some sad things have happened since I left.
I've been making more here in beijing since I moved here than at my highest level in Korea.
I've found apartments that are big and newer and cheap..that just use my housing allowance.
I use taobao, a far better online shopping experience than gmarket..for everything. I use it for everything.  Its generally really cheap, except for foreign products.
I have medical insurance that pays 90 percent of my expenses..american health insurance.
I have more vacation, and work wiht more foreigners...which is a good and bad thing.
I get a 6 percent raise every year with no cap.
My workplace just paid for me to go to Thailand and get CELTA. and I got a pay bump for that too.
I've started to do tutoring...just because i have free  time in the mornings, and not necessary because i need it..that pays me 60 dollars an hour.
There are far more interesting things to do and a bigger variety.  If I am bored, its because I choose to be and not for a lack of options.
My only regret is that I came to China hoping it would bring my husband and I closer together, as we would have more free time.   But even though we spoke for months and agreed to move to China, he blamed me and was very angry at me and at the time of his death last month, still couldn't forgive me for taking him from 'perfect' Korea, which was actually a hell hole to me but I put up with it because of him and the school I loved while i was working there.
I have been thinking lately about life after China.  I may invest in a house that is rented to build up equity or I may buy my own house and set up a little day care that engages children, and develops their soft skills.
Going back to Korea will never be an option for me.


  • SanderB
  • Super Waygook

    • 408

    • June 02, 2018, 06:25:54 pm
    • Gouda cheese Be Best cheese
Re: Life after teaching in Korea
« Reply #44 on: March 15, 2019, 04:35:03 am »
sorry to hear...hope you're doing all right there. <3
Fiat voluntas tua- All that you want is allowed


Re: Life after teaching in Korea
« Reply #45 on: March 16, 2019, 11:24:44 am »
Yikes! Things must have gone down a lot in Britain since I lived there!

I am watching a series known as “skint Britain”

While it is true most (all) TEFLERS have education levels a few notches above these guys it does nevertheless show how hard (third world basically) things have gotten in the U.K..

https://youtu.be/g74FFs6-xVg


Re: Life after teaching in Korea
« Reply #46 on: March 16, 2019, 12:05:23 pm »
Yikes! Things must have gone down a lot in Britain since I lived there!

I am watching a series known as “skint Britain”

While it is true most (all) TEFLERS have education levels a few notches above these guys it does nevertheless show how hard (third world basically) things have gotten in the U.K..

https://youtu.be/g74FFs6-xVg

But they can still afford fags, dogs, expensive sportswear brands and tattoos.


Re: Life after teaching in Korea
« Reply #47 on: March 16, 2019, 11:02:45 pm »
Came here because I was in a mood for nostalgia and stumbled over this.

Since leaving Korea in 2014 I went back to university for a Masters.
I took a job in campaigns for just over 2 years, got one promotion during that time.
I then moved to London to work in the civil service and have since gotten a further promotion.

Now I am finally managing to save as much as I did in Korea (£40k salary aiming for another promo to £54k).  It took 4-5 years, a masters and a couple of promotions.

At least now I have career trajectory as I work as a strategy adviser for government projects.


  • SanderB
  • Super Waygook

    • 408

    • June 02, 2018, 06:25:54 pm
    • Gouda cheese Be Best cheese
Re: Life after teaching in Korea
« Reply #48 on: March 17, 2019, 04:25:55 pm »
You did well mate. Congrats!

Quote
Skint Britain
There is this mantra they keep repeating: ''I'd do anything for a job, mate...'' But that is not entirely true. Even with govt. subsidies and incentives it has proven really difficult for that group to actually get up in time in the mornings and do a day's work in the fields, even when they are provided with council funded transport back and forth. As it stands now, UK: 870k job vacancies and 1 million unemployed people.
In Holland, we have 250,000 job openings (factory-farm etc.) and 500,000 unemployed refusing to look for work. Instead we have migrants coming from Eastern Europe doing all the work white Dutch aboriginals refuse to do.
When the economy is down they scream foul at Poles for stealing their jobs, when the economy is booming they still scream ''Poles out!'' for stealing their benefits.

Being on benefits is clearly still too attractive for a large portion of the unemployed because simply shouting Brexit and hating on Poles does not get any job openings filled... :police:

Yesterday, I saw on the news that Polish migrants can work here for a few months, then quit and receive 1200 euros a month as unemployment benefits while ''looking for work in Poland', then return after 3 months and pick up their old job again because we simply cannot find any people to do the work otherwise.  :smiley: I mean bless them for being so smart to figure out that we cannot do anything about it because we have such a lazy main group of unemployed Dutch people who simply will not work.  :azn:

This is why we need universal basic income. It will save the government billions in overhead costs.
« Last Edit: March 17, 2019, 04:28:31 pm by SanderB »
Fiat voluntas tua- All that you want is allowed


  • NorthStar
  • Super Waygook

    • 252

    • July 05, 2017, 10:54:06 am
    • Seoul
Re: Life after teaching in Korea
« Reply #49 on: March 17, 2019, 04:58:37 pm »
You did well mate. Congrats!

Quote
Skint Britain
There is this mantra they keep repeating: ''I'd do anything for a job, mate...'' But that is not entirely true. Even with govt. subsidies and incentives it has proven really difficult for that group to actually get up in time in the mornings and do a day's work in the fields, even when they are provided with council funded transport back and forth. As it stands now, UK: 870k job vacancies and 1 million unemployed people.
In Holland, we have 250,000 job openings (factory-farm etc.) and 500,000 unemployed refusing to look for work. Instead we have migrants coming from Eastern Europe doing all the work white Dutch aboriginals refuse to do.
When the economy is down they scream foul at Poles for stealing their jobs, when the economy is booming they still scream ''Poles out!'' for stealing their benefits.

Being on benefits is clearly still too attractive for a large portion of the unemployed because simply shouting Brexit and hating on Poles does not get any job openings filled... :police:

Yesterday, I saw on the news that Polish migrants can work here for a few months, then quit and receive 1200 euros a month as unemployment benefits while ''looking for work in Poland', then return after 3 months and pick up their old job again because we simply cannot find any people to do the work otherwise.  :smiley: I mean bless them for being so smart to figure out that we cannot do anything about it because we have such a lazy main group of unemployed Dutch people who simply will not work.  :azn:

This is why we need universal basic income. It will save the government billions in overhead costs.


Yep, increasing the power of the few, over the many. 

You are surely on top of things.


  • zola
  • The Legend

    • 2632

    • September 30, 2012, 06:56:11 am
    • Korea
Re: Life after teaching in Korea
« Reply #50 on: March 17, 2019, 08:14:58 pm »
Yikes! Things must have gone down a lot in Britain since I lived there!

I am watching a series known as “skint Britain”

While it is true most (all) TEFLERS have education levels a few notches above these guys it does nevertheless show how hard (third world basically) things have gotten in the U.K..

https://youtu.be/g74FFs6-xVg
There are families in places like that that have been on the dole for generations. A few notches above eslers? There was a guy on it who couldn't read or write. That's more than a few notches.

It's intergenerational and everyone they know is in a similar situation. Like the girl who got that part time job and then chucked it in because child services turned up with a family members kid for her to look after. Friends, family all in the same spiral and pulling anyone who might be getting a leg up, back down with them. It's grim. Welfare is an absolute necessity for a developed society, but there is always going to be a number that get trapped in it for good.

Anyway, i dont think that video has any relation to a teacher in Korea going back home.
Kpip! - Martin 2018


Re: Life after teaching in Korea
« Reply #51 on: March 18, 2019, 07:38:10 am »
Yikes! Things must have gone down a lot in Britain since I lived there!

I am watching a series known as “skint Britain”

While it is true most (all) TEFLERS have education levels a few notches above these guys it does nevertheless show how hard (third world basically) things have gotten in the U.K..

https://youtu.be/g74FFs6-xVg
There are families in places like that that have been on the dole for generations. A few notches above eslers? There was a guy on it who couldn't read or write. That's more than a few notches.

It's intergenerational and everyone they know is in a similar situation. Like the girl who got that part time job and then chucked it in because child services turned up with a family members kid for her to look after. Friends, family all in the same spiral and pulling anyone who might be getting a leg up, back down with them. It's grim. Welfare is an absolute necessity for a developed society, but there is always going to be a number that get trapped in it for good.

Anyway, i dont think that video has any relation to a teacher in Korea going back home.

Yes, it's families from the roughest estates in the most deprived areas, not as widespread as people think. There's a reason they have to keep inviting the same people back onto the Jeremy Kyle show,  many of whom have already appeared in poverty porn like this .


Re: Life after teaching in Korea
« Reply #52 on: March 18, 2019, 12:44:47 pm »
Not true. This social strata is known for reproducing more than the middle class.

The pillars of the social welfare system are the middle class. They are having one or two children.

So the middle class are going to be shrinking.

Presumably there will either be upward mobility on the part of the children of people on universal social credit or the whole system will come crashing down. 

Perhaps this deserves a thread of its own.


Re: Life after teaching in Korea
« Reply #53 on: March 18, 2019, 01:32:02 pm »
Not true. This social strata is known for reproducing more than the middle class.

The pillars of the social welfare system are the middle class. They are having one or two children.

So the middle class are going to be shrinking.

Presumably there will either be upward mobility on the part of the children of people on universal social credit or the whole system will come crashing down. 

Perhaps this deserves a thread of its own.

True, only the very rich or the very poor can have more than two kids these days in the UK. Actually one thing about that documentary that surprised me was the 35 hours looking for work thing. How can someone spend that long looking for work in a place like Hartlepool? Short of walking round town asking at every individual business on a weekly basis. Is that what they expect people to do. Ages ago when I had to look for work in the UK, a trip to the job centre and a look in the local newspaper pretty much exhausted the possibilities. 
« Last Edit: March 18, 2019, 01:39:48 pm by eggieguffer »


  • Piggydee
  • The Legend

    • 2545

    • October 15, 2013, 07:32:43 am
    • South Korea
Re: Life after teaching in Korea
« Reply #54 on: March 18, 2019, 01:37:07 pm »
I'm just curious if anyone is doing those online classes I hear about.  I think Korea has an online program here.  I'm thinking of doing that and making this year my last year!


Re: Life after teaching in Korea
« Reply #55 on: March 19, 2019, 06:40:13 am »
Yikes! Things must have gone down a lot in Britain since I lived there!

I am watching a series known as “skint Britain”

While it is true most (all) TEFLERS have education levels a few notches above these guys it does nevertheless show how hard (third world basically) things have gotten in the U.K..

https://youtu.be/g74FFs6-xVg
There are families in places like that that have been on the dole for generations. A few notches above eslers? There was a guy on it who couldn't read or write. That's more than a few notches.

It's intergenerational and everyone they know is in a similar situation. Like the girl who got that part time job and then chucked it in because child services turned up with a family members kid for her to look after. Friends, family all in the same spiral and pulling anyone who might be getting a leg up, back down with them. It's grim. Welfare is an absolute necessity for a developed society, but there is always going to be a number that get trapped in it for good.

Anyway, i dont think that video has any relation to a teacher in Korea going back home.

Yes, it's families from the roughest estates in the most deprived areas, not as widespread as people think. There's a reason they have to keep inviting the same people back onto the Jeremy Kyle show,  many of whom have already appeared in poverty porn like this .

As someone who grew up in Hartlepool I'd say it's a fair representation of the experience of many in the town.

I don't know anyone who managed to break the cycle of poverty who didn't move away from the town. Everyone from my year are still working minimum wage jobs or on benefits with multiple kids.
« Last Edit: March 19, 2019, 06:44:02 am by WestMeetsEast »


Re: Life after teaching in Korea
« Reply #56 on: March 21, 2019, 09:58:43 am »
I don't really plan on being a lifer. After my contract is up in Feb. I'm planning on going backpacking around Europe for a couple months and then possibly heading back to the US for work.


  • hangook77
  • Hero of Waygookistan

    • 1059

    • September 14, 2017, 09:10:12 am
    • Near Busan
Re: Life after teaching in Korea
« Reply #57 on: March 21, 2019, 02:49:49 pm »
You did well mate. Congrats!

Quote
Skint Britain
There is this mantra they keep repeating: ''I'd do anything for a job, mate...'' But that is not entirely true. Even with govt. subsidies and incentives it has proven really difficult for that group to actually get up in time in the mornings and do a day's work in the fields, even when they are provided with council funded transport back and forth. As it stands now, UK: 870k job vacancies and 1 million unemployed people.
In Holland, we have 250,000 job openings (factory-farm etc.) and 500,000 unemployed refusing to look for work. Instead we have migrants coming from Eastern Europe doing all the work white Dutch aboriginals refuse to do.
When the economy is down they scream foul at Poles for stealing their jobs, when the economy is booming they still scream ''Poles out!'' for stealing their benefits.

Being on benefits is clearly still too attractive for a large portion of the unemployed because simply shouting Brexit and hating on Poles does not get any job openings filled... :police:

Yesterday, I saw on the news that Polish migrants can work here for a few months, then quit and receive 1200 euros a month as unemployment benefits while ''looking for work in Poland', then return after 3 months and pick up their old job again because we simply cannot find any people to do the work otherwise.  :smiley: I mean bless them for being so smart to figure out that we cannot do anything about it because we have such a lazy main group of unemployed Dutch people who simply will not work.  :azn:

This is why we need universal basic income. It will save the government billions in overhead costs.

What are they being offered?  Shit wages or a good salary.  People will work for good pay.  But if they keep the wage deliberately too low to afford to live or have a hand to mouth existent so they can claim to the government no one will work, who's fault is it really?  The government should block the migrant workers and demand they raise their wages to hire locals.  They'll get people if they pay a living wage. 


  • hangook77
  • Hero of Waygookistan

    • 1059

    • September 14, 2017, 09:10:12 am
    • Near Busan
Re: Life after teaching in Korea
« Reply #58 on: March 21, 2019, 02:52:38 pm »
I left Korea in 2015 after EPIK cutbacks and being there since 2007.  I moved to China.
I am very much happier here even though some sad things have happened since I left.
I've been making more here in beijing since I moved here than at my highest level in Korea.
I've found apartments that are big and newer and cheap..that just use my housing allowance.
I use taobao, a far better online shopping experience than gmarket..for everything. I use it for everything.  Its generally really cheap, except for foreign products.
I have medical insurance that pays 90 percent of my expenses..american health insurance.
I have more vacation, and work wiht more foreigners...which is a good and bad thing.
I get a 6 percent raise every year with no cap.
My workplace just paid for me to go to Thailand and get CELTA. and I got a pay bump for that too.
I've started to do tutoring...just because i have free  time in the mornings, and not necessary because i need it..that pays me 60 dollars an hour.
There are far more interesting things to do and a bigger variety.  If I am bored, its because I choose to be and not for a lack of options.
My only regret is that I came to China hoping it would bring my husband and I closer together, as we would have more free time.   But even though we spoke for months and agreed to move to China, he blamed me and was very angry at me and at the time of his death last month, still couldn't forgive me for taking him from 'perfect' Korea, which was actually a hell hole to me but I put up with it because of him and the school I loved while i was working there.
I have been thinking lately about life after China.  I may invest in a house that is rented to build up equity or I may buy my own house and set up a little day care that engages children, and develops their soft skills.
Going back to Korea will never be an option for me.

Sorry to hear about your husband.  Is it a public school there?  How do you handle the pollution?  How do yuo manage to send money home?



  • kiwikimchi
  • Expert Waygook

    • 631

    • December 27, 2010, 10:15:31 am
    • South Korea
Re: Life after teaching in Korea
« Reply #59 on: March 27, 2019, 08:15:59 am »
I was stuck and lost in Korea for 3 years trying to figure out what I'd do when I went back home. Kept renewing my contract because of no decent jobs back home and the thought of going back to some job I hated and getting paid peanuts. I did save a lot in Korea but I found out saving still doesn't solve the issues of going home.
Instead of searching and applying for jobs online which I had zero luck I bought a course on how to start my own business.
Long story short, I completed the course (6 weeks) while desk warming and was able to have establish my own business before coming back home. I was able to go straight back to work earning really good money. The course was the thing I was searching for that enabled me to be able to leave Korea.

If anyone wants the free trial of Sam's Accelerator Course let me know, it also comes with a free +$500 coupon.
I just need your email address so you can access the free trial.

www.consulting.com

« Last Edit: March 27, 2019, 08:22:06 am by kiwikimchi »