It feels like only yesterday that the long winter nights were never going to end and yet here is summer again, with the warm sunny weather and promise of holiday memories to be made. Everybody has connections to vacations they took in the summer when they were younger, of friends made and family bonds strengthened, alongside those unforgettable views and incredible sights.
After the last couple of years, where travel has been heavily restricted, now feels like the first time in ages that one can properly sit down and plan a summer getaway. However, alongside this is the harsh reality that things have become more expensive back home, making the task of affording a holiday more challenging than ever before.
Luckily, help is at hand in the form of the modern workplace, where there are many ways to combine those fantastic holiday moments with the cash necessary to afford every little holiday detail. Below are some of the ways in which holiday plans can be entwined with work, to ensure all the vacation goals are met while staying on budget.
The most obvious solution is to take a job working abroad. First of all, this means that the day job is ideally located right next to the tourist hot spot, allowing for an easy evening or weekend trip to the local place of interest.
While many Europeans seem to favour working in Europe itself, the world has a vast array of other opportunities ready to be taken. Take for instance China, with over a billion people one of the two largest countries by population size. Of these, hundreds of millions are currently learning English, which makes TEFL (or Teaching English as a Foreign Language) a really attractive career choice there.
For one thing, because there are so many learners, there is a high demand for a TEFL teacher who is willing to go the extra mile to make great lessons. In addition, the country has so many cultural points of interest, from the Terracotta Warriors to the Great Wall of China, that there are plenty of once-in-a-lifetime moments waiting to be enjoyed. Last but by no means least, there is also the option of getting certified in China itself, which enables even a TEFL tutor with no previous experience in the classroom to make a career for themselves there.
Teach TEFL online
Another great alternative to working as a TEFL teacher in person is to teach TEFL online while enjoying the holiday experience. For most people these days, the idea of having a conversation with a friend or family member online holds few surprises, so the transition to teaching TEFL online ought not to be so difficult.
Of course, there are plenty of benefits to teaching TEFL remotely. Firstly, there are fewer issues to handle than having to completely immerse in a day job in another country in person, such as the potential language barrier that might exist between the TEFL instructor and the native speaker staff.
On top of that, there is also the fact that the schedule can be flexible online, working around the mutually beneficial needs of teachers and students. For instance, a learner in Malaysia may only be available in the evenings, but that could line up perfectly for a daytime class in other parts of the world.
Finally, the online realm offers a first-hand opportunity to utilise the positives of technology, whether that be sharing a great podcast or a handy tutorial for students, or even getting recommendations on films and music from them. The internet provides an easy pathway to exchanging cultural traditions and knowledge that might then be passed on to others.
Becoming an ex-pat more permanently
Of course, becoming a TEFL teacher is just one option for prolonging the travel stay, and extending the travel budget. In any case, the decision to move abroad is one that should be taken with much consideration, and a true assessment of the pros and cons of such a decision.
Right away, the potential ex-pat ought to compile a list of some of the top places they might consider moving to. After that, consulting the input of other expats on where they enjoy living is a good next step, to get the real facts on the upsides and downsides of living abroad full-time, and how it is in different parts of the world.
Next, once this list has been whittled down to a realistic and achievable shortlist, that takes into account factors such as cost of living, expat lifestyle, and climate, then the potential expat-to-be needs to think long and hard about the day-to-day life that they want to have there.
In places like the UAE, for example, the weather truly is a major consideration, with summer temperatures frequently in and around 50 degrees Celsius. Though the weather there is enjoyable in the winter months between December and February, this might not be enough to compensate for the hotter months later on.
Freelance while on holiday
Alternatively, for those who wish to merely enjoy their holiday while doing a touch of work, there are a lot of options. For many modern companies, it is now possible to continue working the existing day job online, dealing with work issues that come up as and when needed. This way, there is little disruption to the existing routine, but it can be a fine line between feeling safe and taking on the same amount of work as being back home.
On the other hand, doing a bit of TEFL teaching online might be the best way to balance the budget, keeping enough cash on hand for the excursions whilst maintaining the freedom to enjoy the sights with the family.
For many TEFL teachers, the students they work with are often more than happy to share holiday stories, usually having a few vacation tales of their own to tell during the lessons. Additionally, there is the side bonus of being able to create original and meaningful content around the theme of holidays, providing an easy and relevant topic to teach with.