By Grace Chinn
Grace is an EFL Teacher with 2 years’ experience teaching in Peru, Australia and Scotland.
She is currently travelling and looking for teaching work in Latin America.
Ecuadorians are friendly and open and make for great English students. And with more and more tourists hitting Ecuador every year, the demand for English teachers is up. Wages can be fairly low (as low as $5 an hour) but when a set menu lunch costs just $2 that doesn’t seem so bad. Food delicacies to be sampled in Ecuador include fresh ceviche (fish cooked in lime and chili) when on the coast, and the daily staple of yuca (cassava) whilst in the jungle. Empanadas de queso (deep-fried cheese pastries) and chifles (fried plantain) as well as an incredible array of fresh fruit and vegetables can be found nation wide.
Quito, the country’s capital, is the second highest capital in the world, and is well worth a visit if you don’t mind suffering from altitude sickness! Not only is it a great option for EFL teachers looking for work, it is also renowned as being a fantastic place to learn Spanish due to the clear accent and abundance of teachers who will help develop your language skills for as little as $5 an hour. The accent on the coast is much harder to understand, but with perfect pacific waves to be enjoyed, who’s complaining? For those looking to live along the beautiful and surf rich coast, it might be worth looking into volunteering at a local school in small surf towns like Canoa and Montanita in exchange for accomodation and board. Other options are Bahia de la Caraquez and Manta along the coast which are bigger hubs, but lack the laid back beach town feel.
A favourite destination of EFL Teachers is Cuenca, which is a spanish-style colonial city nestled in the highlands and rich with beautiful architecture, art and great food. The wealth of beautiful buildings have earned it the privilege of being a UNESCO World Heritage Site. One option to be considered is the Galapagos Islands, set a short flight away from the mainland, which are an absolute must see for animal lovers. There are a number of universities and schools on the islands which may offer teaching positions as well as a few volunteer organisations offering teaching roles.
Wherever you end up in Ecuador, the wonderful thing is that you’re never too far away form an amazing waterfall, mountain, jungle or beach just waiting to be explored.