7 Tips To Plan the Best Trip as an ESL Teacher

Rachel Weiss
Career China Digital Marketing Manager
Apr 29, 2019

There are many benefits to teaching English in China, and one of the biggest ones is the opportunity to travel! Here’s some tips for making the most of your time off and how you can plan the best trip around China or Asia.

1. Plan Trips Around Your Teaching Schedule

Most English teachers in China follow a Wednesday – Sunday work week, and then have Monday and Tuesday off of work. While this may seem a little different at first, having Monday and Tuesday off of work is actually really beneficial, especially when planning to travel!

  • Weekends are much busier travel times, and there are less people traveling on Mondays and Tuesdays
  • On Wednesdays, Thursdays, and Fridays, English teachers will usually start work in the afternoon, giving you plenty of free time in the morning. You can use this time to explore more in your city during the day, join a gym, take Chinese lessons, and many other things.

2. Transportation in China is Easy and Convenient

Living and traveling in China is very convenient because of how accessible and available the public transportation is. Within the cities you’ll find many taxis, public buses, metro systems, and ride share bikes.

When you travel you other cities, you can take trains (normal speed and high speed trains) as well as long distant buses. It makes it very quick to travel across the country.

Read more: How To Get Around China With Public Transportation

3. Planning a Trip Is Easier Than You Think

You don’t need to be fluent in Chinese to plan a great trip and travel around China! With the help of many apps, it’s not difficult to buy train tickets or book hotels. The website and app Trip.com is in English and makes it very easy to pay with your WeChat or Alipay account.

Check out these other tips for planning a trip in China.

4. Everyone is Traveling - Grab a Friend or Two and Go!

During weekends and holidays, everyone gets the travel bug and wants to explore a new place! Many expats will take trips with friends during the holiday time, be it a co-worker or someone you meet around your city. There are also many tour groups and expat organizations that plan trips all around China.

If you don’t want to travel solo or want to make some new friends, hop onto a tour group! There are many websites and WeChat account that cater to expats in China wanting to travel. Check out CET (Culture Exchange Trip),  Laowai在华, and other city websites like The Beijinger and The Shanghaiist to see what trips are happening.

Read about one teacher's experience traveling in China during her holiday: How To Get The Most From Your Time Off as an ESL Teacher in China

5. Location Location Location!

China is a big country with a variety of cool experiences to try. You can explore a new city, hike a mountain, haggle at a market, raft one of the famous rivers, or walk on the Great Wall. Because it is so big though, plan out your destinations and what to do in each location. Do you want to be in a city or in the outdoors? A big city like Shanghai or a rural area Yangshuo? No matter where you go, it’s very easy to take the trains in China that will take you wherever you want.

Not sure where to go? Check out these Top Places Expats Should Visit in China.

6. One Time Zone in China

One interesting thing about China is that there is one time zone throughout all of China. Even though China is vast and should technically cross six different time zones, the country follows Beijing standard time. This makes it a bit less confusing when crossing different provinces!

7. Travel Around Asia for Cheap

Another benefit to teaching in China is that it is very easy to travel to other countries in Asia. During your holiday time you can hop on a plane to places like Thailand or Vietnam and spend less than $100 on a ticket!


What Are You Waiting For?

Don't waste you time - there's so much to do and see in China and around Asia! Start planning your trip and crossing more places off your bucket list.

Check out more tips for living and traveling in China! Read The Ultimate Guide for Moving to China

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