We’ve tried our best to answer any questions you may have below, but if there is anything you still want to discuss or anything that is unanswered, please feel free to email our Recruitment Manager Mike, who is based in the UK, at mike@yorkenglishcareers.com

Note: this is not Mike, this is just a cute kid –

Teachers York English


1) I can’t speak Chinese. Can I still work at York?

Absolutely. We don’t require Chinese language for our teaching as we foster a 100% English environment in the classroom, and you always have your Chinese Teaching Assistant if Chinese is required.

To get to grips with life in Fuzhou, Shenzhen, Xiamen or Changle, we offer free weekly 1.5 hour Mandarin lessons at one of our branches for both beginner and intermediate level. Language exchanges between the teachers and Teaching Assistants are also extremely common.

2) Do I need a degree to teach at York English?

Yes, applicants will need a Bachelors degree or higher. This is a government requirement for visa purposes, and therefore nothing we can change. Unfortunately Associates degrees are not accepted due to restrictions from the Chinese government.

3) Which countries do you hire from?

We hire native-English speakers from the following countries: USA, UK, Canada, Ireland, South Africa, Australia and New Zealand.

4) Can I join York with my partner?

Definitely. We have many couples here, and couples get their own 2 bedroom apartment if they choose to live together. You also have the opportunity to work in the same school or separately.

5) I’ve never taught before, do you need experience?

No. With our comprehensive training programme, those who have never taught before will not feel at a disadvantage. With lesson observations, mock lessons and feedback in your first two weeks, as well as on-going professional development, we will ensure you succeed as an English language teacher.

6) I’ve taught English overseas before, what opportunities for advancement are there?

We welcome experienced teachers with ambition and do our best to ensure you are suitably challenged with a variety of levels to teach, quarterly reviews, lesson observations with follow up goals, and workshops. There is the opportunity to become Senior Teachers, which in itself provides extra workshops and training, in addition to responsibility. From there you can develop into an Academic Coordinator or progress to our numerous opportunities at our Head Office. York also funds external training courses should you wish to pursue a qualification relevant to your role outside of working hours. Read our blog post on career progression at York here.

7) Do York provide housing?

Yes, we provide all teachers with a fully furnished, city centre apartment, fitted with all the modern appliances such as WIFI, AC, TV etc. This comes completely rent free too!

If you arrive with a partner and wish to live with them, you will have a two bedroom apartment to yourselves. If you arrive alone and wish to live with someone else, we will pair you up with another teacher to share a two bedroomed apartment.

If you wish you find your own apartment, you are very welcome to do so. You will then receive a housing allowance from us on top of your monthly wage.

Should you wish to live in a York apartment, but wish to live alone, this can be arranged also. However, you will need to cover the other half of the rent yourself (which is usually around 2000 RMB for a nice, city centre apartment).

8) Do York provide medical insurance?

Yes we do. We offer free, basic coverage to all our staff upon arrival. This is usually adequate for most of our staff.

However, if you wish you also have the option of going on our paid medical insurance which will cover 100% of all in-patient costs.

9) When do you hire native English speakers?

We hire all year round. We also accept applicants who may not be able to begin right away.

10) How long does it take from application to arrival?

The whole process can take around 2-3 months due to the visa process. You can check out our visa process video here.

11) Is the process the same for Fuzhou, Shenzhen, Xiamen & Changle?

Yes, the process is the same for all locations.

12) I’m already in China. Will York still pay my flight bonus?

Yes, we will still pay you the full amount the same as any other teacher. And we will also pay you it if you stay for a second year too!

13) I have more questions, what should I do?

Moving to China is an experience of a lifetime, but it’s also a big decision. We understand it’s hard to figure out which school to apply to, where to live, and imagine what sort of life you will have. If you are still unsure or have any questions, do email our Recruitment Manager Mike from the UK at mike@yorkenglishcareers.com , he will be more than happy to chat through any questions you have.

Alternatively, fill out our application form so we can see all your details and ensure you meet the visa requirements. This way we will know exactly how best to help given the details and preferences you have provided.


1) How far will my apartment be from the school?

We always aim for your home to be close to your branch as we realistically can. Nobody likes a long commute!

2) Now that I have applied, who can I contact if I have any questions?

You can contact our HR Assistant Barbara at any time. Email her at barbara@yorkenglishcareers.com

3) What will I need to pack for China?

There are plenty of Western malls and shops here, such as H&M, Zara, Pull & Bear, and Sephora etc. Those moving to Shenzhen will find it easier to buy Western products, Xiamen also has slightly more Western shops than Fuzhou and Changle.

These shops will accommodate for Western sizes and products. The weather is extremely hot in the summer, but a little cooler in the winter (moderate if you’re Canadian or Scottish!), so you would need to bring clothes for both winter and summer seasons.

Upon your arrival at your new apartment there will be towels, bedding, toilet paper, toothpaste and one adapter plug extension for each teacher.

While there are a couple of Western book stores in Fuzhou and Xiamen (none in Changle), the choice is limited, although teachers always hold book swaps so you should never be short of reading material, but it is something to bear in mind. Shenzhen will find more of a variety.

For women, bikinis are limited (although swimming costumes are plenty), so if you cannot order online due to your body size, it would be good to bring plenty with you.

It would also be a good idea to bring mosquito spray that has DEET in it, as the sprays here don’t so might not be as effective. However, you can also find this on Taobao.

Taoabo is an online store that is extremely cheap and what most of our teachers use to buy everything under the sun, from clothes to skin products to food! So don’t fret too much!

Read our teacher Katey’s blog post on what she was glad she packed when moving to China.

4) What vaccinations will I need for China?

You will need Hepatitis A as a precaution. Additionally, if you are entering China from a country where yellow fever is endemic, you may require a yellow fever certificate. For more information, do check the vaccination requirements for China here.

5) Do I need a VPN in China?

Yes you will. We recommend Express VPN, Astrill VPN, or Vypr VPN. The majority of our international teachers have Express VPN. While you can get a VPN while in China, it is much easier to get one before you arrive.

6) How much tax will I pay as a teacher in China?

Please read more here for information on tax brackets in China.

7) Will China be a culture shock?

Initially, most probably! Fuzhou & Changle give you a taste of real China with delicious, authentic cuisine and the quite limited English. But there are also Western shops, malls, English cinema’s and plenty of friendly locals to help you out! However, Shenzhen and to a lesser extent Xiamen, will have a more international feel with English more commonly spoken.

We have written an article here as a ‘how to’ guide to survive China!

8) I’m a first time teacher and I’m nervous about teaching, is there anything I can do to prepare?

Our teacher Courtney from the UK has written a blog post about her first week at York, which you can take a look at here.

All the preparation you need would have been done in your TEFL/CELTA. We give extensive training for the first two weeks with week one being you observing classes, and week two of you team teaching with an experienced teacher (for the classes you will be taking as your own). You will also have workshops with your senior teachers, and teacher development plan meetings with your academic coordinator. Don’t fret,  if you are open to learning you’ll do great!

9) How long is summer & winter course?

Winter course is 3 weeks long and summer course is 6 weeks. This is when the students are on school holiday. During these periods you will be teaching either a STEAM based curriculum (science, technology, engineering, art and mathematics) all in English, a reading and drama class, phonics, or kindergarten courses.

10) How much extra work is summer and winter course?

You teach one extra class during your weekdays, and one extra class on a Tuesday (5 Tuesdays out of the 6). You will be paid extra if you are teaching your extra classes on the morning schedule, and everyone is granted 9 days paid holiday at the end of August as extra compensation for your time.

11) Do I have to do any promotions at York?

We only hold promotions 4 times a year and they are entirely voluntary even though we really do appreciate your help! And if they are outside of working hours, you’ll be paid overtime.

12) Are there any extra hours I will be required to do?

We run two free 20 minute lessons at the local kindergarten schools, and one 40 minutes class at the local primary schools, where we rotate teachers on to do. This means you may participate in two already planned, 20 minute lessons at a local school, or one 40 minute already planned lesson, approximately once a month, sometimes less than that. They are actually a lot of fun and a great chance to see what Chinese schools are like!