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Teaching English Online as a Non Native Speaker- The Ultimate Guide

One of the most common questions or google searches that come to my site are ‘Teaching English online non native speaker’.

This means two things:

  • Lots of people want to teach online
  • A lot of these wonderful people are non native speakers

With this in mind, I am going to run you through a step by step guide on teaching English online for a non native speaker, so you can launch your online teaching career and earn from the comfort of your own home.

To give you a bit of background, I left my corporate job in 2017 so I could find a way to work and earn remotely while traveling the world.

I have been working as an online teacher for just under 3 years now and through a lot of trial, error, and tears I found a way to increase my rate and work less. At my peak, I earned around $6,000 a month as an online teacher.

If you want to learn how to increase your rate as an online teacher, please read right till the end.

Related Posts on How to Become an Online Teacher:



There may be links to products and services recommended on here that are affiliate links and I may earn if you click on them, AT NO EXTRA cost to you. Hope you find the information here useful! Thanks.

Are there English teaching jobs for non native speakers?

Yes. Below is a list of 42 English teaching jobs for non native speakers online, hiring now.

Contrary to popular belief, there are plenty of schools out there hiring non native speakers. You don’t need to be a native speaker to teach English, as many students you teach will only have a basic level of English.

There are many non native English speakers with an excellent level of English!

How do I get started if I want to begin teaching English online as a non native speaker?

  1. Have a 120 hour Teaching English as a Foreign Language ‘TEFL’ certificate
  2. Have a headset* and a laptop**
  3. A good internet connection
  4. At least a good proficiency with the English language.

*It is good to have, but I just used my Apple earphones

**Some companies, like Palfish, allow you to teach with your smartphone, but you will get more well-paid opportunities if you have a computer or a laptop.

2- A Teaching English as a Foreign Language ‘TEFL’ certificate

This is NON-NEGOTIABLE. If you are not a native speaker, the ONLY way a school is going to hire you is if you have some form of qualification.

The good news is, you can get one quick, for a reasonable price, online.

There is a 120-hour online course ran by Let’s TEFL which focuses specifically on online teaching and has specific training to ensure your application, resumes, introduction videos for online English recruiters is done right.

The great thing about this TEFL compared to other providers:

  • It specializes in preparing you to teach online.
  • It also prepares you to teach English as a second language.

By the end of the 120-hour TELF certificate, you will have both the qualification and knowledge to teach English as a second language.

As far as I’m aware, Let’s TEFL is the only course available online now which comes with a whole extra video module with specific training for teaching online – presented by an actual teacher.

Note- They are also endorsed by DaDa and iTutorGroup as one of their recommended courses. (Both are two HUGE online schools)

Note 2- I have taken the course myself.

Teaching English online non native speaker with Let's Tefl

Without further due, here is a list of places hiring non- native speakers so you can get started teaching English online as a non native speaker.

42 English Teaching Jobs for Non Native Speakers

  1. WaijiaoYi
  2. Core English
  3. Ginseng English
  4. Topica Native
  5. TutorABC
  6. Talk 915
  7. eHello
  8. FluentBe
  9. Learnlight
  10. Preply
  11. Hujiang ccclass
  12. Spitball
  13. Zebra English
  14. Cambly
  15. Ecomm
  16. Wonderkids
  17. Café talk
  18. Amazing talker
  19. Lingokids
  20. Italki
  21. Antoree
  22. PandaABC
  23. HelloKid
  24. Palfish
  25. Engoo
  26. iTutorGroup (Tutor Abc)
  27. First Future
  28. Skyeng
  29. Acadsoc
  30. Hi Tutor
  31. Vivaling
  32. Neska
  33. LinguaTV
  34. ABC 360
  35. Idioma International
  36. Altoral-
  37. Learntalk
  38. Skybel
  39. 51 Talk
  40. Native Camp
  41. Unhoop
  42. Verbling

As you can see there are plenty of teaching job opportunities for non native English teachers. Now you that know where all the teaching jobs for non native speakers are, the next step is learning how to increase your rate.

How to Increase Your Rate When You Are Teaching English Online As A Non Native Speaker:

I am going, to be honest.

When you are starting to teach English online as a non native, you will discover a frustrating fact.Since you are not a native speaker, some companies will pay you less than native speaker.

It can be incredibly demotivating to find out you are going to be paid significantly less than native speakers EVEN THOUGH you have more experience.

Don’t throw the towel in because I have a solution:

Offer to teach English ALONG WITH A SKILL.

For example, I niched down to become an IELTS Specialist and Business English Tutor


Because these two areas are in high demand and students will pay GOOD MONEY to learn how to pass IELTS exams.

Also, working professionals who want to improve their language skills, and climb the corporate ladder, have the money and desire to pay Business English teachers to help.

You essentially fix a specific problem for the student using the English language, so the student pays you more for the privilege of learning how to fix it.

You could also offer to teach:

  • English + Presentation skills
  • English + Pronunciation specific lessons on accent modification
  • English + TEOFL/SATS

Those are just a few ideas if you are interested in teaching English online for non native speakers.

How to become a Business English Teacher 

The Teaching Business English 30 Hour Online Course will train you to become a Business English teacher. You receive personal tutor support, training on lesson plans, and an internationally recognised certificate, and anything you need to know about the job market.

Also, any work experience you have working for a company in an office will help you lots as you can use that experience to help with your lesson plans.

How to become an IELTS Specialist:

If you want to become an IELTS Teacher, take the Teaching IELTS 30 Hour Online course. It trains you on how to become an online IELTS teacher, so you can charge a higher rate.

Once I up-skilled and became an IELTS specialist and Business English, my rate went from $15 per hour to about $40-$65 per hour.

I could work less because I earned more and spend my free time learning how to create other income sources or gallivanting around the countrysides on my motorbike.

Ps; If you like adventure travel, let’s connect on Instagram! I want to see your pictures 

Are you still unsure about teaching English online as a non native speaker?

From time to time I receive messages from teachers who prefer a bit more training so they can hit the ground running quickly.

I recommend you go through all the free information first and then if you still need some extra guidance, drop me a note. My rate is reasonable.

I have taught successfully in these areas (I made sure ALL my students IELTS scores improve, there is not a single student who I taught IELTS with, that didn’t improve their score. My Business students pass interviews and kick ass in presentations :))

I have course materials, my own lesson plans, and training summarised for anyone that wants to learn IELTS or Business English.

But don’t just listen to me, you can have a look at their reviews here and decide for yourself whether it is something you need.

I don’t have time to teach more than 2-3 hours so I intend to train you up and get you ready in 2-3 hours max.So you can be on your way to raising your teacher rate ASAP.

Some tips on how to succeed as a non native English teacher

  • Use music

Students LOVE music and dancing. It also gives you a bit of a break from talking.  As a reward, if they have been good in class, you can play Disney music and dance with them at the end of the class.

You can find all the songs on Youtube along with the lyrics to help improve the student’s vocabulary.

  • Use props

Something you most definitely need to use is props.  You won’t get hired to teach children online if you don’t have some props. Don’t spend too much money, you can make and create a lot of the props yourself, get creative.

 Here are some cool props that don’t cost too much.

  • Learn a few Chinese language terms

When you are on your journey to discover teach English online non native speaker jobs, learning basic Mandarin phrases will help you greatly!

I list a few common words mandarin and use them in the class when I want to instruct students with little to no English. An example could be ‘ Hen Hau – very good’.

It makes the students giggly and they are more likely to listen to you.

  • Homework

You will have to assign homework to your students. My advice here is, don’t spend too long on this as you aren’t being paid to review it outside the classroom.

To be honest I assign it during class time and mark it during class time too.

I just ask my students to analyze song lyrics to find new vocabulary and draw stuff and then label the drawing with English words.

Teach English Online As A Non Native- Some Things You Should Know

  • Make sure to review the policies on taking time off for online schools. Some are stricter than others and may impose penalties. Always give them advance notice if you are going on holiday.
  • Sometimes the parents will be present in the lesson and will take a picture or even join in! Don’t get freaked out, just take it as a compliment. I often catch parents dancing to the Disney songs in my class!
  • You will need to make or buy props for your classes, so your background looks bright and interesting.


Related posts on making extra money from home:

Teaching English from home was one of the best decisions I ever made. It gave me the freedom to explore the world while working from my laptop and earn from random parts of the world like Bosnia, Vietnam, and Spain.

You can teach English online from South Africa, Japan, anywhere really! There are plenty of online ESL jobs for non native speakers.

I also saved lots because I eliminated commuting time and costs. Overall I am a much happier person.

Teaching English online for non native speakers is entirely possible.

If you are a non native speaker and you think it is a barrier to teach English online, I am here to tell you it isn’t!