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Ask the Experts

Get paid to travel with the Overseas Job Centre


Experts are we? Good grief, we're not talking about us! While one of us here at PAYAway has worked for a living, both at home and abroad, the one that does all the writing is a long-haired work shy layabout. He has done everything possible since school to avoid getting a job and is really in no position to be giving first hand advice on appropriate footwear for fruit picking in New Zealand or the best way to break a teaching contract in Taiwan.

You guys still insist on asking our advice though, so we came up with our usual idea when confronted with a problem: get someone else to do it. Hence, we are rounding up our travel blogger friends and inviting them over to ours to give you first hand answers to your questions on working and volunteering abroad. We have our first experts listed below and we are working on finding more. Drop by their blogs and read a few of their posts first, as it is likely they may have answered some of your questions already.

I'm sure some of the working travellers listed in our Workers of the World Profiles also wouldn't mind answering a few questions. The working overseas advisors on the fee based Plansify are another option for finding answers to your questions.

If you have worked abroad and are willing to share your experience please contact us.


Working as a Surf Instructor

Working as a surf instructor

Chris Stevens
Backpacker Banter

Chris Stevens quit a job with STA Travel for a life on the road. When funds ran low he ended up in a nudist movie but now drums up a few extra dollars working as a surf coach. He has worked in Morocco, Australia, Ecuador and New Zealand, and has since set up Epic Gap Year where among the experiences on offer is a 12 week surf instructor training course in Taghazout, Morocco.

Chris' surf instructor articles include:
Sun, Sea, Surf and Sex – My Dream Job!

Contact via his contact page


Teaching English in Thailand

Teaching in Thailand

Nina Ragusa
Where in the World is Nina?

Nina taught grades 10-12 at a school in Ayutthaya. She currently works online, both teaching and as a freelance travel writer, so she can make her home wherever she wants it to be. Check out her Work to Travel section for ideas on how to live a life similar to hers.

Nina's teaching and teaching in Thailand articles include:
The Ultimate Intro Guide for Teaching English Abroad
FAQ: Teaching English in Thailand
How Much Does it Cost to Live in Thailand and Other FAQ
Play it Cool: Thailand’s Do’s and Don’ts

Contact via Facebook or in the comments sections of the above articles


Teaching English in Vietnam

Teaching in Vietnam

Amy Blyth and Andrew Wyatt
Our Big Fat Travel Adventure

Andrew is a qualified teacher in the UK, while Amy managed to land her first English teaching job without any previous experience - just a master’s degree and a TEFL certificate. They left Britain in March 2013 telling their friends and family they intended to travel the world indefinitely and took up their first teaching position abroad in Hanoi. They have published a useful ebook: How to Teach English in Vietnam.

Teaching in Vietnam articles include:
Teaching English in Vietnam – Pay, Visas and Finding a Job
What’s it actually like to Teach English in Vietnam?
How We Chose Where to Teach English in Asia
How Much Money Can you Earn from Teaching in Vietnam?
Survival Tips and Resources for New TEFL Teachers

Contact via their contact page, Facebook, Twitter or by commenting on their posts listed above


Teaching English in China

Teaching English in China

Agness Walewinder and Cez Krol

Agness Walewinder and Cez Krol are Poles travelling the world like tramps for under $25 a day. Some of that money they earned teaching in China - living in Huayuan, Xiushan andDongguan. They co-author an ebook Add Your Brick to the Great Wall: Experience-based Advice for China from Expats. Presently they are in Amsterdam, where Agness works for Poki, a cross platform game publisher.

Agness and Cez 's teaching in China articles include:
How To Save Up To $18.000 A Year Teaching English In China While Travelling
My Kindergarten Teaching Experience in China
My Reflections on Teaching in China

Contact via email or Facebook


Teaching English in China

Teaching English in China

Jeannie Mark
Nomadic Chick

Jeannie Mark left her career in Canada behind when in 2010 she bought a one way ticket to India. Later she moved to Wuxi to teach university level students where, despite being a native English speaker from Calgary, her Asian background sometimes counted against her when schools wanted a 'foreign face'. She also taught in private schools and private tutoring during her two years in the country.

Jeannie 's teaching in China articles include:
Teaching in China: the Ins and Outs
Facing Discrimination in China

Contact via Facebook and Twitter


Teaching English in South Korea

Teaching English in Korea

Christine Ka'aloa
Grrrl Traveler

Christine left New York City, where she had a career as an actress and TV shooter/producer of reality shows, to teach in Korea for a year at a public school, hagwon and summer camp. Her blog and YouTube channel provide numerous tips and advice on the subject.

Christine 's teaching in South Korea articles include:
So You Wanna Teach English in Korea?
How to Teach English in Korea & Mock Teaching Interviews
Teach English Abroad – What are English Summer Camps in Korea?
Teach English in Korea: A Day in a Life of an ESL Teacher
Teaching at a Musical Summer Camp in Korea
Life in Korea: Inside My Apartment in Korea

Contact via the comment sections of the posts above, or below her YouTube videos


Teaching English in South Korea

Teaching English in Korea

Tom Gates
Red Dragon Diaries

Though he is older than most of his compatriots, Tom Gates has been an ESL teacher with EPIK, the public school system’s tool for engaging students with native English speakers, since 2011. Describing himself as many years out of college he had wanted to teach in Japan or Korea after leaving education but it wasn't until the economic meltdown in the States derailed a career in IT that he began to think seriously about taking the plunge. For further insight on becoming a teacher in Korea check out Tom's YouTube channel.

Tom's teaching in South Korea articles include:
Teaching English in South Korea – what is it REALLY like?
Being an Older Non-Korean Korean in Korea
“I’m Not White and Korea Won’t Hire Me!”
Teach English in Korea: Public School Or Private Hagwon?
Teaching English in Korea for 3+ Years – What’s It Really Like?

Contact via his contact page or Facebook


Au Pairing in Paris

An au pair in Paris

Left Bank Manc
Left Bank Manc

Originally from Manchester, the Left Bank Manc has now moved to London but for three years she au paired in Paris, living in a teeny tiny Cinderella room where she could shower and cook spaghetti at the same time.

The LBM's au pairing in Paris articles include:
Thinking of Being an Au Pair?
Advice For Soon To Be Au Pairs
Au Pair Life and Eyebrows

Contact via her au pair forum


House Sitting

House Sitting

Josie and Conrad Schneider
The House Sitting Travel Blog

Married in 2009 at the ages of 55 and 69, these baby boomers have house sat around the world and, by walking in other people’s shoes, credit the lifestyle with bringing the world and other cultures into focus for them. Josie spreads the word both through the numerous articles on their own site and freelance writing for other markets. They are also Airbnb super hosts in their native Michigan and have explored home exchanges.

Josie's house sitting articles include:
Create a Successful Profile to Win the Best House Sitting Assignments
Should You Apply to More Than One House Sitting Assignment at a Time?
Should You Pay for Utilities While House Sitting?
Don’t Ignore This One Action if You Want to House Sit

Contact initially via Twitter


House Sitting

House Sitting

Teresa Roberts
Creative Paths to Freedom

A former teacher and school principal in the USA, Teresa Roberts retired early and has since looked after other people’s homes around the world. Among other places she has house sat in Spain, Mexico, Czech Republic, England, the Dutch Antilles and for the owners of a 57 foot boat in Baja California. She has also published two books, including Finding the Gypsy in Me - Tales of an International House Sitter.

Teresa's house sitting articles include:
Interview With A House Sitter In Australia
House Sitters in Scotland

Contact via her website


House Sitting

House Sitting

Charlie Marchant
Charlie on Travel

Charlie Marchant and partner Luke have never used a house sitting website to find sits in Central America, preferring instead to use expat groups and forums, word of mouth and their own dedicated house sitting website. In the year since they began house sitting they have looked after homes in Costa Rica, Panama and Nicaragua, including one with 11 dogs.

Charlie house sitting articles include:
How to Become a House Sitter and Travel the World for Longer
Why We Came Back to Ometepe Island in a Heartbeat
What is House Sitting in Costa Rica Really Like?
Why Quepos is the Ideal Place to House Sit for Travellers

Contact via Facebook or through the comment sections of the above articles