A couple of weeks ago I received my first month’s pay. It wasn’t much.

Due to July being my first month, as well as being during the summer, I only worked 51 hours. I’m on an hourly rate of €16.50, so that works out to €841.50. That ended up being €694.52 after tax.

I know that July was a slow month. However, I was more optimistic about August as I had 86 confirmed hours, after I’d removed classes from my calendar due to holidays. But they’ve been cancelling! The first week of the month I had 21.5 hours of classes. The second and third week dropped to 12.5 and 14.5 respectively. This week I have 13.5 hours. On the last two days of August, I have 9.5 hours confirmed, which bodes well for September, which is reputedly busy because all of the Parisians will have returned from their holidays.

But it is a little stressful not to know how much I’ll be earning in an average month. And, with a total of 69.5 hours, my August pay isn’t going to be as generous as I was hoping.

This is forcing me to make some difficult choices. Perhaps I won’t be able to do any travelling for a few months. Maybe I should consider a career change. At the bakery, I might have to choose a baguette instead of a croissant, because they’re usually the same price and I can make a baguette with some sort of spread last for two meals, whereas a croissant is only good for one (being broke is great for my figure). That being said – I was given restaurant tickets for July (10 valued at €5.60 each), which are good because they force me to buy food.

A warning to those considering teaching English in Paris – you will not earn much money. If you want to live like a king or save money from teaching alone, you’ll have better luck in the Middle East (where the pay is amazing with great benefits), or Asia and European countries where the cost of living is lower.

I’m now looking at ways to supplement my income – any ideas?

5 thoughts on “Money

  1. Jolie,
    I am from the US and was considering teaching overseas. Your blog has been the best I have found on the truth about teaching (so I think you have done your objective justice 🙂 ). I was wanting to go some place like Paris to teach, but your experience is really making me rethink that. I would love to teach business English for companies abroad and now am considering venturing to the Middle East. Do you know anything about teaching in South America? Thanks and hope you sort out your financial dilemmas!

    • Hey Monica,

      I can’t really give much advice outside of my own experiences, so I can’t tell you anything about South America. As far Paris goes, it’s a bit difficult to figure out what the real salary is like because I’ve only been here over the summer, which is when most Parisians take their holidays. Things should (hopefully!) get busier next month. Also, I’m on the lowest hourly rate because I didn’t have any experience when I started – so if you have experience you could probably expect a few more euros an hour.

      That being said, one of the teachers from my school is going to the Middle East next week and these are his conditions – US$4000 a month tax-free, free accommodation, a free visa, travel compensation, and free return flights to his country every year – so it’s a great place to go if you want to make a lot of money. The only catch is that most positions seem to require at least two years’ experience and a Masters degree. (Then again, most positions in Paris required one or two years’ experience, and I found work without any.)

      If you have your heart set on Europe, apparently you can live very well in the Czech Republic and some other parts of Eastern Europe on a teacher’s salary, because the cost of living is so low, but it can be difficult to save because of the exchange rates.

      I hope this helped!

  2. Maybe get a part time job at the boulangerie,
    so all in all, you’ll have around 10-20 more extra
    work hours a week,
    and the possibility of free bread 😀

  3. I love your blog…
    Do you remember me?

    My English is horrible since I don’t practice.

    How about to do language exchange? French, Arabic or Japanese?

    Sorry, last time I was not able to see your ayes! They are blue…? because you kept your BLACK glasses when were talking together…

    Don’t smile about my english 🙂

    Honestly, I would like to say to you, never give up. I’m like you in the same situation, and if you want that I tell you my experience in France, I’ll be happy to meet.

    Why we don’t meet and have drink together. By the way, I’m still working at la Défense. Do you still work there?

    Take special care


  4. Pingback: Irritation and (more) money concerns « Jolie à Paris

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