The country offers good working conditions, and while the salaries are lower than many other countries, so is the cost of living. Teaching in Hungary allows you to enjoy European culture at half the cost of Western cities. Hungary has beautiful summers and mild winters.
Public transportation is reasonably efficient and cheap, and the quality of medical care is quite high, particularly for dentistry. In my personal opinion, Hungary has the best restaurants in the world. Great quality food, great wines, and fantastic service make Hungary a popular destination for gourmets.
Most schools require teachers to be native English speakers with at least a bachelor’s degree and a year’s experience in teaching. A TEFL or a TESOL certificate is also a requirement in some schools.
English is popular for a variety of ages and purposes. There are numerous positions teaching English to public school children, university students, adults and business professionals. Most English teaching positions are in government schools. Most English conversation schools offer only part time work, because adults generally study only after work or school.
The average monthly salary of a teacher in Hungary is 150,000 HUF (US$930) for a 20-25 hours work week. Hourly rate is roughly between483 HUF – 1935 HUF (US$3-12) and may vary depending on your location. This is enough for you to live a comfortable life in the country.
The best time to look for a teaching job in Hungary is in mid-September and January to February. Most of the language schools in Hungary are in Budapest, the capital city, but there are also other positions in smaller cities throughout the country.
Living and teaching English in Hungary can be a fantastic experience. It is famous for its luxurious thermal spas, great food, cafe culture and festivals. Don’t expect to save much money, but you can enjoy a great quality of life.
It is possible to find teaching work after you arrive in Hungary, however visas are a little complicated so this is not the recommended path. One of the best ways to find jobs is by contacting schools directly or browsing through classified ads. Many schools advertise for teachers in the English language publications in Budapest and these can be found in the main train stations or other popular foreigner hang outs. Full-time employment can sometimes be difficult to find, but you can likely line up several part-time jobs to provide you with a livable salary.
Once you get a job, read your contract thoroughly. Discuss every detail with your employer. Most schools in the country offer open contracts. This allows you to look for another job, such as private tutoring, to collect additional income. Print up some cheap business cards and let everyone you meet know that you are looking for private students.
Your apartment rent will likely be your largest expense, so try to find some shared accommodation if possible. Employers sometimes have inexpensive accommodation but don’t count on it.
Hungary has some great wine and great live music. Be sure to check out the Sziget music festival on Margit Island on the Danube every August. Another must visit venue is Old Man’s pub in Downtown Budapest. The best musicians in Hungary regularly play there.
Many restaurants, bars and tourist attractions have Hungarian and foreigner prices. Be careful that you are not cheated too badly. It certainly helps to learn some of the language so that you don’t look like a rich tourist.
TEFL English teaching job listings in Hungary
Detailed living costs for teaching English in Hungary
Information on visa requirements to teach English in Hungary.
Interviews with English Teachers in Hungary
Hungary (Tourism Information Page)
Budapest, Hungary (Tourism Information Page)
Hungary News (Budapest Sun)
Hungary News (Expat Loop)
Hungary News (Budapest Times)
Hungary News (Budapest Week)
Best of Budapest Events and travel information