Teaching Jobs in Saudi Arabia

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Teaching Jobs in Saudi Arabia
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Teaching Jobs in Saudi Arabia - Overview & Job Types

Get a lucrative professional job in Saudi Arabia - one of the world’s wealthiest countries, as well as the birthplace and world center of Islam. Saudi Arabia’s very generous salaries are USD $3K-$4.5K/month tax free, and sometimes up to $6K. Flights, housing, health insurance, and large year-end bonuses are also commonly included in teaching contracts. The Saudi culture is more conservative, devout, and sensitive than its neighbours like the UAE. You should do your research and understand the country’s cultural norms and laws. For example, all teaching jobs and classrooms are separated by gender. Classroom technology is prized here and you’ll see ICT skills listed on a lot of job descriptions. The education industry is modernizing quickly. There are many jobs on offer with universities and private international schools. ESL academy jobs are less common, but on the increase.

Teaching Locations

The capital Riyadh and the other major city of Jeddah (near Mecca and the Red Sea) have the bulk of the teaching jobs. Riyadh is surrounded by beautiful desert dunes and mountains. Jeddah is coastal and can feel a bit like a resort, with scuba divers gathering here for famous Red Sea dives. If you’re a scuba enthusiast, this is a great place. If you’re not yet, why not start now - you can get your PADI certification here. The Saudi cities are ancient and hold many traditional sights. With contrasts similar to Dubai, mega malls, skyscrapers, and luxury hotels are offset by quiet streets and traditional markets.


You need to be a native English speaker with a BA degree and some teaching experience. TEFL is not required, though often recommended. Many recent positions on the higher end of the pay scale only accept professional certified teachers, who are licensed to teach in public schools in their home country.

Cultural Information

Teachers who live and work in Saudi Arabia have respect for the local culture and understand that they’re a welcome guest, but shouldn’t expect things to be the same as their home country. You’ll definitely face a bit of a culture shock and be challenged to open up your horizons. This is among the most conservative Islamic culture not just in the Persian Gulf, but in the world. There is no night life or drinking, and other public entertainment options are likewise very limited. The culture places a lot of limitations on what women can and can’t do, including wearing an abaya when out in public, and you must be aware of those norms and accept them to live here. Foreigners typically live in tightly-knit “foreigner compounds” with other expats - while fun, this can also be a little isolating. A stint in Saudi Arabia suits families or single people who want to focus on their career or personal growth. You can save up quite a bit of money, complete your Master’s degree online, write that novel you’ve always wanted to, or challenge yourself to read 200 books. 

Visa Info

Your visa is secured by your employer and you will need to work with the Saudi embassy to provide the right documents to get your work permit. A good recruiter like Footprints will help you throughout the documents and placement process.