Teaching English in Italy

Lo Stivale, the boot of Europe, Italy is one of the most exquisitely beautiful countries and cultures of the world, home to the floating city of Venice, the ancient sites and architecture of the Pantheon and Piazza Navona in Rome, and the grand historic religious buildings and statues of Vatican City; Italy has 44 UNESCO World Heritage sites scattered far and wide, more than any other country in the world. This culturally rich and cosmopolitan nation is also home to one of the world’s most cherished art scenes and a cuisine exported to every far corner for the globe. Historians and art lovers head here in as almost many numbers as beach-going holidaymakers, and many leave a gastronomy connoisseur, after experiencing the finest pizzas and pasta dishes to be found on the planet.

Along with Italy’s booty of art treasures and ancient relics, you’ll find an equally rich and fruitful landscape, including the glorious Alps and its many popular ski resorts, the well hiked hills of the dolomites, the active and volatile volcanoes of Sicily, and the golden coast and diving resorts of Sardinia. However, it’s the people and lifestyle which is the major selling point of Italy. Italians can be boisterous, passionate and emotional, but above all they are friendly and warm-hearted, valuing family and friendship above all else. Living the true dolce vita means enjoying a cold beer or warm coffee in a cafe terrace, lapping up the warm Mediterranean sun, dodging through mad traffic on the back of a Vespa in your finest chinos, or bar hopping through tiny back street watering holes and trendy bars, enjoying a fresh salad for lunch, or a rich pasta and wine with friends in the evening.

Teaching English in Italy

For those who dream of teaching English in Europe, Italy is more often than not, the preferred destination, but despite having a large number of teaching position available throughout the country, and so many schools and universities constantly on the lookout for experienced and well qualified native-speaking English TEFL teachers, it should come as little surprise that jobs are still hard to obtain, with competition for all levels of teaching positions being fierce.

Good TEFL teachers should not be put off by the competition for jobs, opportunities are constantly there, and the TEFL job market in Italy is one that is on the increase. Though Italy is a powerful European and world nation in terms of business, economy and industry, it still remains behind neighbouring nations in terms of English fluency, and more and more Italians are seeing the need to improve their English in order to better their job prospects. Those TEFL teachers who are hard-working, committed and willing to prove it, will always stand a chance of finding work here.

Wages and the cost of living

Don’t expect to make your fortune teaching English in Italy, TEFL teaching wages should afford you enough to live on, with a reasonably active social life, but life in the bigger cities can be expensive, and wages in the small towns can be low. For examples, a full-time TEFL teacher with 1 to 2-year experience, should expect to earn around €900 per month in Naples, and around €7 per hour for private teaching, whilst the cost of a nice studio room not too far from the city centre might cost you around €350 per month. In Milan, your monthly wage might be as much as double, with an hourly rate of €20 to €25 for a private lesson, but an apartment not too far from Milan city centre is likely to cost you anything from €750 and up, with food and drink also higher than many places further south.

Where to teach in Italy

The TEFL teaching jobs of Italy are spread amongst the many cities and towns, with each location offering a unique taste and twist on the Italian lifestyle. Here are a few of our recommendations:

The eternal city, Rome is perhaps the jewel in Italy’s crown, and one of the must-see tourist destinations of the world. As well as a wealth of sights, sounds and tastes to experience, Rome is also the country’s political and cultural centre, with numerous language and education institutions making it one of the natural choices of TEFL teaching destinations.

Milan is one of Europe’s main industrial and business centre, the home of Italy’s stock exchange, and at the heart of the fashion and motor vehicle industries. It may not be the most culturally dense Italian city, but with its standing as Italy’s economic powerhouse, there are plenty of TEFL jobs to be found here, as well as some exciting nightlife.

Bari is a much less talked about City outside of Italian circles, and often referred as being a bit of a secret in terms of tourism. Locally known as ‘Paris by the sea’, Bari, although not as breathtaking as Paris, is an attractive city, built upon a proud Catholic culture, a well-preserved history and unspoiled architecture, set on the shores of the Adriatic. Bari is also a university city, with some good English teaching opportunities for those with experience.

If you would like more information on TEFL Courses and how you can become a TEFL teacher click here

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  1. Annie Kelleher

    a smaller town would suit me. I have 16 years teaching experience

  2. Jay Davies

    I’m a teacher in Brindisi (southern Italy). Its a fairly small, provincial town but has great food, excellent weather and lots of travel opportunities. Bari and Lecce are short train rides away and a cheap Ryanair flight from the Salento airport can take you to many places across Europe. I earn 1100 a month (pretty decent in comparison to the other schools) and its a cheap area to live in. My school rents a staff apartment and I pay just 250 a month on rent. All in all, I think I got lucky but my move to Brindisi was a good one!

  3. Diane Rafter

    I’d like to work in English speaking school or teach English language. I am a fully qualified teacher registered with the General Teaching Council

    • Rebecca Potts

      Hi Diane

      That’s fantastic news! In order to teach English as a foreign language you need to have a TEFL qualification, we offer a range of courses, take a look here and see which one is right for you: https://www.i-to-i.com/tefl-courses/.

      Once you’re qualified you can teach anywhere in the world where English isn’t spoken as a first language. Take a look at our jobs board to get some TEFL career inspiration: https://www.i-to-i.com/tefl-jobs-abroad/.

      If you have any other questions about TEFL give our experts a ring and they’ll be more than happy to help.

      Good luck!

      Your i-to-i team

  4. Claire Louise Betta

    Hello! I am about to finish my TEFL, and return from England back to Italy where I am resident. I would love to teach in Brescia, as am resident in Manerba Del Garda, can you offer some advice on the best way to start applying please….ie, CV online or visit schools direct? Many thanks for any help/advice!

    • Rebecca Potts

      Hi Claire

      Thanks for getting in touch, great news that you’re TEFL qualified! We don’t currently offer any TEFL trips in Italy but if you check out our jobs board here: https://www.i-to-i.com/tefl-jobs-abroad/ you might find something which takes your fancy. We’d recommend bookmarking this page so you can check back regularly, employers are always adding new jobs!

      Thank you
      Your i-to-i team

  5. Liz golden

    I am a fully qualified primary school teacher with a degree in education and English. I teach kids aged 5-12 and I’ve also taught teenagers in a language Schoo in cork. I’ve taught and lived in Australia and Asia. I would like to spend a summer living in Italy, preferably near the sea. I have nearly 14 years teaching experience. My current job pays me through the Summer so I would not need to be earning huge amounts but just enough to cover my basic living costs while I’m there. I don’t speak Italian but I’ve starting learning.

    • Rebecca Potts

      Hi Liz

      Thanks for getting in touch, sounds like you’ve got loads of great experience! We don’t offer any TEFL trips to Italy at the moment but there may be some summer positions on our jobs board here: https://www.i-to-i.com/tefl-jobs-abroad/
      If you can’t find anything that’s right for you straight away make sure you bookmark us so you can check back, employers are always adding new positions.

      Thank you
      Your i-to-i team

  6. Je

    How many TEFL certification hours are required to teach in Italy (or Europe in general)?

    • Rebecca Potts


      Thanks for getting in touch. The minimum number of hours TEFL training you need to teach abroad is 120. If you want to add some practical learning we offer a classroom course too. Check out the TEFL courses on offer here: https://www.i-to-i.com/tefl-courses/.

      Thank you
      Your i-to-i team

  7. Rachel

    I have studied Italian by now for about 5 years and have a bachelor’s degree in the language and culture. I’d love the opportunity to become absolutely proficient in it by spending another year in Milan. If this means teaching English, then I’m all for it!

  8. Isaac

    My name is Isaac, I teach English in an Africa precisely in Ivory Coast, a French speaking country where English is taught as second language. Is it possible for me to teach abroad ??

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