Frequently asked questions

Living in China

How do I do shopping in china?

Baopals/Taobao When you are living in China for any length of time, you will hear about the miracle that is Taobao. Taobao is a website much like Ebay where locals go to buy cheap goods. There are a couple of different websites like Taobao, but this is the big one! The only thing is, it’s all in Chinese, which is great if you are trying to learn, but if you want something quick, there is an alternative! Baopals is a site that has been working to translate items on Taobao for a small fee usually serviced with the shipping cost. Search, read, browse, and order in English from the comfort of your couch! This can be quite a dangerous site for your bank balance! WeChat Pay/AliPay/Union Card When you order your items online from Amazon.cn, Taobao, or even your VPN, you might come across WeChat Pay, AliPay, or Union card access. WeChat pay is incredible. WeChat is a messaging app on your phone and can be used as a source of payment for food in food courts, items online, top up your cell phone’s sim card, or if you want to give your friend some money you might have borrowed. All you have to do is connect your bank card to your account and you can do all this by scanning QR codes. Connecting your bank account might be a tad difficult as they write your name a bit funny at the bank and you have to figure out exactly how they wrote it. Most likely, it is your last name first, then first and middle, all in capital letters. It’s definitely worth the convenience to find out!

How do I go about finding an apartment?

Our dedicated teacher support team will help you to find a suitable apartment.

What is housing allowance and how is it different from salary?

Housing allowance will be paid together with your salary. It is tax-exempt if an invoice is provided.

What facilities are typically included in the apartment?

Kitchen, Western-style toilet, shower, completely furnished, bedroom, living-room etc

Is the apartment a shared accommodation or single?

This depends on the contract offered.

The Cost of living in China ?

Food undefined Drinks Restaurant lunch/dinner: 20 - 80 RMB ($3 - 12 USD) Drinks 2 - 10 RMB ($0.30 - $1.50 USD) Activities 30-minute massage: 40 RMB ($6 USD) Monthly fitness membership: 150 RMB ($22 USD) Transport One-way metro fare: 3 RMB ($0.45 USD) 20-minute taxi fare: 25 RMB ($3.70 USD) Utilities 200-400 RMB per month ($30USD - $60USD ) Internet 900-1200 RMB a year ($135 USD - $ 180 USD ) Rental 2,000-4,000 RMB per month ($300USD - $600USD )
Most landlords in China require a 2 month deposit for rent. There will also be an agency fee of typically ½ -1 month’s rent.

What do I do if I need to see a doctor?

One of our support team members will accompany you to the hospital if you don’t feel well.

Do I need to learn Mandarin before coming to China?

It is not compulsory but it is definitely an advantage if you can speak Chinese. We will organize regular Chinese classes for our teachers. Come along, learn Chinese and make more friends.

How can I learn or study Chinese before arriving?

When first moving to a new country it can be useful to know a couple key phrases or words in the new language. You might consider food items, how to order the food, directions, or how to get to a bathroom when you need one. You can start practicing your reading with Chineasy, practice listening and speaking with Chinesepod and learning vocabulary with Memrise. You can test your speech, writing, memorization, and grammar with Hello Chinese.These resources can be found here:

Teaching in China

I am not a native English speaker, but I speak English fluently. Am I still eligible to apply?

Absolutely! If you are a fluent English speaker, and meet the relevant job requirements, we welcome you to apply. English does not have to be your first language, but most of our schools will require native proficiency in the English language.

What are the general age range of students?

The Age range of your students varies depends on which school you apply for. Below are typical age range of different schools. Kindergarten: 3-6 years old Primary school: 6-11 years old Middle school: 11-15 years old High school: 15-18 years old Language Centers: 3-18 years old

What is the average size of the students per classroom?

This depends on the schools amount of students. Training centers can teach one-on-one or groups from 3-25 students. Public schools in China typically seat 50-60 students per class.

Do I need to stay at school to perform office duties?

Yes, teachers are expected to stay during office hours. Some schools are less strict about it.

Will I be required to travel between different school campuses?

This depends on the school. If you’re strictly at a training center, you are only required to travel to the training center. If your school requires you to teach at public schools AND a training center, you will travel between the training center and public schools assigned to you.

If so, is transport provided or reimbursement for travel costs?

Some schools provide transport and some schools offer reimbursement with a valid taxi receipt from the driver.

How do I conduct classes when I cannot speak Chinese?

Normally a teaching assistant will attend the class to support foreign teachers in the classroom. It also depends on the schools’ policy.

Can I still apply a teaching job if I don’t have prior teaching experience?

Definitely! We encourage anyone who is interested in becoming an English teacher to apply through us. Applicants with less than 2 years teaching experience are required to obtain a teaching certificate (TEFL, TESOL, CELTA, etc.) prior to teaching. It takes 2-3 weeks to complete the course and we will assist you along the way.

Work Visa

Can I legally work in China with a tourist, business or student visa?

Although some schools in China can accept foreign teachers to use a tourist visa or a business visa for teaching, it is illegal in Chinese laws and regulations. We recommend you to apply for a work visa instead of taking risks using other types of visas, which will expose you to the risk of deportation and leave a bad record.

How long does it take to get a Chinese Visa?

If from the moment you submit your application, it takes about 7-20 working days to get the notification of work permit (link). After you arrive in China, you can get a work permit and residence permit within about 15 days.

How much does a Chinese Work Visa cost?

First, you need to get your materials certified and notarized. In the United States, for example, it would cost $160 US dollars to obtain notarization of these materials. In addition, applying for a Z visa requires $140 US dollars.

What is the age limit for Z visa application?

The Chinese government can accept people aged 18-60 to apply for a work visa.

Can my family come with me?

Yes, if your husband and your children want to come with you, you will need to prepare a marriage certificate and a birth certificate, both of which need to be notarized and certified.

If I am already in China, how can I apply for a z visa?

If you are already in China and have a business visa or a tourist visa, you can directly convert either of them into a residence permit and then apply for a work permit. However, business visas and tourist visas can only be converted into residence permits for half a year or three months. So after obtaining a work permit, you need to extend the residence permit to the same length as the contract period.

What happens if I overstay my Visa?

Staying in China overdue will get be fined and it will leave you a bad record. It may affect your application for a work visa if you are overdue for more than 30 days.

Can I apply for a no criminal record in China if I'm already in China?

If you are already in China and have stayed in China for one year (work visa and student visa only), then you can go to the local immigration and apply for a no criminal record. You will need around 3-7 working days to get it. This material can be used to apply for a work visa.

Can I extend my Z visa?

No, the Z visa is for single entry only. When you arrive in China, please try to apply for your work visa as soon as possible from the school. If you have to leave the country, you can try to apply for a Z visa again in Hong Kong or Shenzhen Huanggang Port. If you are lucky, they will issue the Z visa again for you.

What if my residence permit is cancelled by the school?

Honestly, it will be an inconvenience for you but it does not mean that you must leave China. After the school canceled your residence permit, you still have a 28-day stay visa in China(T visa). If you can find a new job quickly, you can ask your new employer to submit a new work visa application as soon as possible. Please remember to confirm if your criminal record was expired or not since the validity of the criminal record is only 6 months. If it expires, you will need to apply for a new certified criminal record in your country as soon as possible. If you have been in China for one year, you can apply for a non-criminal record at the local entry and exit bureau, which will make your application more convenient.

Can I apply for a Z visa in China?

Yes, you can apply for a Z visa in Hong Kong or at Huanggang Port in Shenzhen. Here are the requirements:1) To apply for the visa on arrival at Shenzhen Huanggang Port/Checkpoint, you need to fly to HK, and your school needs to give you the Z visa documents on the border.2)You can apply for the Z visa at the port visa office and get your visa within 1 hour. 3) If your passport has previous stamps and you haven't been to Turkey, Pakistan, and Iraq for the last 2 years, it would be okay to apply for a Visa on Arrival.4) If the passport is brand new without any travel history on it (i.e. stamps), please bring the old passport and the new passport.

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