Have you ever dreamed about ditching the nine-to-five lifestyle and travelling the world as a digital nomad? Travel blogger Evelina Krusinskaite did just that with the help of a popular online course
Many people like to daydream about visiting far-flung destinations or going on exotic holidays but for the majority of us, those journeys are taken in the few weeks’ annual holiday we get from our day jobs.
However, there are some who are so passionate about exploring the world that they tailor their careers to fit their passions. Evelina Krusinskate, who moved to Ireland with her mother at the age of eight, is one of these people.
Speaking to Irish Country Magazine, she explained how doing an online English-teaching course changed her life and led her to start her own business.
For people who haven’t heard of it, what is TEFL?
“TEFL stands for Teach English as a Foreign Language. It is a way for native and fluent English speakers to teach English, or subjects through English, to others around the world whether it is in person or online.”
Why did you decide to do a TEFL course?
“It was March 2020 and I had just returned from travelling around South East Asia for five months. I wanted to find a way to earn money as I travelled, rather than returning to Ireland for six months and then heading off again. This cycle is quite hard mentally and physically, and it’s not the most sustainable way to continue exploring the world. I had heard of others teaching online and earning money that way, so I said, why not? I completed a 120-hour TEFL course with The TEFL Institute of Ireland and a 30-hour teaching online course along with that. I did end up teaching about six or seven students online, but I saw that tefl.ie also had jobs and internships abroad, therefore it was the perfect way for me to move to Asia and stay there long term. I love the continent.
“Having a TEFL course and a Bachelor’s degree (International Business from University of Limerick) allowed me to apply for a teaching job in Thailand and I went over when the pandemic was still in full swing. Thailand was one of the only countries accepting teachers, so I just took the opportunity and moved over. It was one of the best decisions ever!”
How is it different to a regular teaching course or degree?
“A TEFL course is very much a condensed version of doing a full-time course or a full degree. It equips you with the knowledge of the English language and the skills of teaching it to others along with classroom management, lesson preparation and dealing with different situations as a teacher. The 120-hour course with tefl.ie took me around three to four weeks to complete. There are also more in-depth courses you can do, or you can always upskill by completing additional 30-hour specialist courses, such as teaching English online, teaching young learners or teaching English for business.”
Is it easy to secure work around the world when you have a TEFL degree?
“I would say yes. If you work with a company like tefl.ie, it is pretty easy to secure a job as they have a wide pool of contacts around the world that they work with on a yearly basis. Plus, teachers are very much sought after, especially in Asia. Requirements vary around the world, but for example, to teach in a government school in Thailand, you must have a Bachelor’s degree and a TEFL course, to teach in an international school in Thailand, you must be a qualified teacher and have a TEFL course, whereas, teaching in Cambodia only requires a TEFL course.”
What does a typical day look like for you?
“In a government school in Thailand, I taught maths. I was responsible for delivering two maths classes for 1st to 6th class students every week, and I also taught multi-skills, which is like another English class, essentially. My school days began at 7:30am and ended at 4:30pm, therefore it was quite a long week, but it allowed me lots of time to plan my lessons and do other things while I was in school. I usually had between two to five hours of teaching a day, but each school varies greatly. Some of my friends taught in secondary schools and had twenty 40-minute classes a week and others had to look after their kindergarten classes all throughout the day.
I now work online and I have a digital marketing and content creation business (Clikk Media), which allows me to be location independent. I work between three and six hours a day, depending on the tasks I have to complete for my clients. Moving abroad encouraged me to create a more sustainable business which allows me to continue exploring the world at my own pace. I’ve also experienced big growth on my socials (@evs_adventures) recently, therefore content creation for this also takes up a lot of my time! I’m kept busy, but being self-employed is amazing, as I create each day as I wish.”
Do you have any advice for people who are nervous to take the plunge and go travelling?
“Honestly, my only advice, and something I try to live by is ‘nothing great happens inside your comfort zone’. To experience new things and have adventures you must get out of that comfort zone, feel a little scared and nervous and just do it anyway. That’s where the best adventures come from – the unknown.
“I met some of the best people while I taught in Thailand, including one of my best friends in the world whose wedding I’m attending in September as her bridesmaid. If I hadn’t gone to Thailand, I would have never met her. You never know what awaits you on the other side of the world!”