What is the Monthly Salary of an ESL Teacher in Japan?

Are you a Filipino looking to work as an English as a Second Language (ESL) teacher in Japan? You may be wondering what kind of salary you can expect to earn. Japan is a popular destination for ESL teachers, offering an abundance of job opportunities, a unique cultural experience, and a good ESL teacher salary package.

In this article, we’ll dive into the specifics of ESL teacher salaries in Japan, and provide you with all the information you need before making your big move. So, buckle up and let’s explore what awaits you in the land of the rising sun!

ESL Teacher Salary in Japan

Japan has always been a fascinating destination for many Filipinos, whether or not they’ve ever visited the country. For many Overseas Filipino Workers (OFWs), Japan offers exciting job opportunities and a unique cultural experience that is unmatched anywhere else in Asia.

One of the most sought-after jobs in Japan for OFWs is teaching English as a Second Language (ESL). Japan’s reputation as a top destination for ESL teachers is well-deserved, offering decent wages that allow you to enjoy your time overseas while still being able to save money. Despite the high cost of living, you can still have a good time in Japan while building your savings. So, if you’re curious about how much you can earn as an English teacher in Japan, read on for more information.

How Much Can You Earn Teaching English in Japan?

Filipino ESL teachers dreaming of working in Japan might be wondering how much they can expect to earn. If you’re one of them, you’ll be pleased to know that ESL teachers in Japan can earn a decent salary, ranging from 200,000 to 600,000 Yen ($1,700 to $5,000 USD) per month. Hourly tutoring rates are also high, with an average of 3,000 Yen ($28 USD) per hour. Just like in China, Japan often includes flights, accommodation, and training in their salary packages.

While cities generally pay higher than rural areas, the cost of living remains proportional to your salary. Keep in mind that your salary may also depend on the type of job you have.


If you’re a Filipino considering a career as an English teacher in Japan, you might want to explore the option of working in an eikaiwa. An eikaiwa is a private English school that offers conversation classes for both children and adults. As an eikaiwa teacher, you can expect to earn around 250,000 yen ($2,000 USD) per month, with an average class size of 10 to 15 students and five to eight teaching hours per day, usually in the afternoons or evenings.

What’s great about working in an eikaiwa is that many schools offer benefits such as covering your flights, accommodation, and training. They can also help arrange insurance and visas, making your transition to Japan smoother. However, it’s important to note that the details of your benefits may vary depending on the school you work for.

JET Programme

If you’re a Filipino looking to teach English abroad, the Japan Exchange and Teaching Programme (JET) may be the perfect opportunity for you! JET is a government-sponsored organization that offers teaching positions in public schools across Japan. As a JET teacher, you’ll receive a salary that’s higher than what’s typically offered in other Asian countries, ranging from 2.8 million to 3.96 million yen ($26 – 33k in USD) per year, with the potential for increases based on your experience within the program.

One of the unique things about JET is that it welcomes teachers from a wide range of countries, not just English-speaking ones. This means that Filipinos, along with individuals from France, Germany, Brazil, Peru, and many other nations, are eligible to apply. Additionally, JET provides housing, flights, visas, and insurance for its teachers, making it a great option for those who want a hassle-free transition to teaching in Japan.

JET contracts are one year long, but can be renewed up to five times. The program also offers about four weeks of holiday time, giving you ample opportunity to explore all that Japan has to offer.

ALT (Assistant Language Teacher)

For Filipinos interested in teaching English in Japan, it’s important to know that some public schools hire their native English teachers directly, instead of through the JET Program. As an ALT, you could earn a monthly salary ranging from 200,000 to 250,000 yen ($1,600 – 2,000 USD) when hired by the school or a recruiter.

Housing is usually provided, and you can expect around 10 to 20 days off per year, in addition to national holidays. Class sizes may be large, with 35 to 40 students per class, and your typical work day runs from 8:00am to 4:30pm.

While previous teaching experience or a TEFL certificate is not always required, it is often preferred. So, if you’re a Filipino looking to teach in Japan, consider these details when considering your options.


Did you know that working as an English as a Second Language (ESL) teacher at a Japanese university can offer a great salary and vacation time? Depending on your level of experience, you could earn around 300,000 to 600,000 yen ($2,500 – 5,000 USD) per month, with the added bonus of up to three months of vacation time.

The catch is that competition for these jobs is high, and universities have high standards for hiring, such as requiring a Master’s degree in TEFL and substantial teaching experience. Nevertheless, if you have the qualifications and passion for teaching, a university job in Japan could be the perfect opportunity for you.

International Schools

Filipinos who are looking for teaching opportunities abroad might be interested to know that international schools in Japan offer competitive salaries ranging from 250,000 to 600,000 yen ($2,000 – 5,000 USD) per month. These schools are mostly located in Tokyo and require at least two years of teaching experience.

The good news is, many of your students may already have some level of English proficiency coming from different backgrounds. Depending on the school, housing and settlement allowances may also be provided, such as the American School in Japan which offers a monthly housing allowance of 1.7 to 2.8 million yen and a relocation bonus of 400,000 yen.

Keep in mind that these teaching positions are highly competitive and depend on the reputation of the school. If you’re up for the challenge, teaching at an international school in Japan could be a great opportunity for your career growth and cultural experience.

Private Tutoring

For those looking to earn extra income in the Philippines, private tutoring can be a great option. With one-on-one sessions, you can earn around 3,000 yen (approximately 1,500 Philippine pesos) per hour. While there are no work benefits, you can set your own price and schedule, giving you control over your work and offering flexibility.

It’s important to note that the rates you can charge will depend on the demand and competition in your area. Researching local rates and demand can help you set competitive prices and maximize your earnings. Networking and word-of-mouth can also help you find students who need tutoring.

Finding students on your own may be the biggest challenge, but advertising your services can increase your chances of getting hired. With the right approach, private tutoring can be a lucrative and fulfilling way to earn extra money while in Japan or even when you get back to the Philippines, since these classes can also be delivered online in some cases.

Video: ALT salary, living expenses in japan, how I budget | JET Program 2022

The video provides information about the salary of English teachers in Japan, specifically from the perspective of an Assistant Language Teacher (ALT) working for Interac. The focus of the video is on providing information for Filipinos who are interested in becoming ALTs in Japan. The video likely covers topics such as the average salary range, benefits, and additional expenses that may be associated with working as an ALT in Japan.

Frequently Asked Questions

1. What is the average salary for an ESL teacher in Japan?

The average salary for an ESL teacher in Japan is around ¥250,000 to ¥300,000 per month, depending on factors such as experience, qualifications, and location.

2. Do ESL teachers in Japan get benefits?

Yes, many ESL teaching positions in Japan come with benefits such as health insurance, paid vacation time, and sometimes even housing allowances.

3. Is it possible to save money while teaching ESL in Japan?

Yes, it is possible to save money while teaching ESL in Japan, especially if you are careful with your spending and take advantage of the benefits that come with your teaching position.

4. What qualifications do I need to become an ESL teacher in Japan?

In general, you will need a bachelor’s degree and a TEFL or TESOL certification to become an ESL teacher in Japan. Some positions may also require prior teaching experience.

5. Are there opportunities for career advancement as an ESL teacher in Japan?

Yes, there are opportunities for career advancement as an ESL teacher in Japan, such as becoming a head teacher or curriculum developer. Some teachers also go on to start their own language schools or become freelance tutors.

6. How do ESL teacher salaries in Japan compare to other countries?

ESL teacher salaries in Japan are generally higher than in many other countries, particularly in Southeast Asia. However, the cost of living in Japan can also be higher than in other parts of Asia.

7. Are there any additional expenses that ESL teachers in Japan should be aware of?

Yes, some ESL teaching positions in Japan may require you to pay for your own transportation, such as a train or bus pass, as well as your own visa and work permit fees.

8. Can non-native English speakers find ESL teaching jobs in Japan?

It is possible for non-native English speakers to find ESL teaching jobs in Japan, although many positions may require native-level fluency in English. It is important to have a good understanding of grammar and pronunciation in order to be an effective ESL teacher.

Final Thoughts

ESL Teacher Salary in Japan

Remember, working as an ESL teacher in Japan can be a fulfilling and exciting experience. However, it is important to do your research, understand the job requirements and expectations, and be prepared to adapt to a new culture and language. By understanding the salary range, benefits, and additional expenses, you can make an informed decision about whether teaching English in Japan is the right move for you. Good luck on your journey and enjoy all the opportunities that teaching in Japan has to offer!

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