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Guide to Living and Teaching in Costa Rica

September 24, 2013

Working conditions and salary

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Working conditions vary depending on the school and the part of the country in which you’re residing. As mentioned in other sections, the most common ESL position in Costa Rica is working in and around the San Jose area working for private language institutes which service Fortune 500 companies.

Given this, teachers can expect to work anywhere from 12 to 25 hours a week for roughly USD$8 - $10 per hour. Lesson planning, preparation time and travel time are not compensated for. Some institutes are known for better treatment of employees than others, so it's key to do your research into where you’ll ultimately be working.

Classes in-company (on site) are generally early in the morning (7am) or in the afternoon or evenings, when the employees of those companies are not working themselves. A common joke among ESL teachers in Costa Rica is that they work from 7 – 9 twice a day.


The ELT News guide to living and teaching English in Costa Rica was compiled by Andrew Woodbury.



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