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Visa/work advice for partner of teacher

Discussion in 'Teaching abroad' started by annieniamh, Mar 22, 2017.

  1. annieniamh

    annieniamh New commenter

    Hi all,
    I'm greatly in need of advice!
    Me and my partner are looking to move abroad for a year and have settled on the idea of Vietnam. One problem: I am a qualified teacher and have 3 years experience. He, however, is not in a transferable profession and I'm worried he won't be able to get a visa to stay more than 3/6 months.
    Is anyone in a similar situation? Can you shed some light on our options?
    Any advice would be greatly appreciated!
  2. gulfgolf

    gulfgolf Established commenter

    Your first issue is your time frame. Good schools require a minimum two year commitment and a mindset that two years will turn into more if there is a reasonable match.
    Beyond that, good schools will get a visa for your husband, if you're married. For a boyfriend, it's not so clear cut and you may indeed end up with issues that make it hard for him to join you.
    You're also limiting yourself severely by sticking to one country. Why? There are only a handful of schools and no guarantee one will end up having and offering a job for you.
    ejclibrarian likes this.
  3. ejclibrarian

    ejclibrarian Established commenter Community helper

    I agree with gulfgolf. You're unlikely to get any jobs if you're only willing to commit to a year. Schools that you would actually want to work in are looking for a minimum two year commitment.
    If your partner has skills that could be put to use by a school then that may work in your favour. You could then both get jobs and visas would be sorted by the school. He is unlikely to make much money but it would at least mean he can do something and not have to worry about doing a visa run.
    If you're dead set on just a year and just Vietnam then I think what you're looking for is just a holiday and not really a job.
    gulfgolf likes this.
  4. gulfgolf

    gulfgolf Established commenter

    Sometimes it can be useful to turn the question around by switching the countries.
    Imagine the original post, but switched to a Vietnamese teacher who had decided to work and live in the UK for a year, with a boyfriend "not in a transferable profession" who wants to come along.
    Thinking through the difficulties of that proposition can be revealing.
    T0nyGT likes this.
  5. annieniamh

    annieniamh New commenter

    Hi, thank you both for commenting it's useful to get another opinion.
    In terms of the 'useful skills' can you give some specifics?
    We are open to more time out there and we would definitely consider other countries- Vietnam is on the table at the minute as I have had an interview with a school out there.
    Thank you for taking the time to reply! It's much appreciated.
  6. ejclibrarian

    ejclibrarian Established commenter Community helper

    Well that's good that you've had an interview though I'm surprised that they didn't mention two year contracts. In terms of useful skills, well if for instance your partner worked in IT then he could work for the school in some capacity with those skills. If you can tell us what he does then we might be able to give you some more ideas.
  7. gulfgolf

    gulfgolf Established commenter

    Try to get some intel on the school. If they haven't mentioned two-year contracts, they're probably bottom of the barrel. Having teachers come for just one year is something good schools avoid like the plague. It takes months to get a new teacher acclimated, and if they leave right away, they're already in departure mode by the time they're properly settled in. One-year teachers can't really contribute anything substantial to the development of the school. And considering how expensive it is (in time, effort and money) to bring in and ship out a new teacher, it's hardly worth the effort.
    dumbbells66 likes this.
  8. lottee1000

    lottee1000 Occasional commenter

    My boyfriend was in Thailand with me for a while. In the end we returned to the EU permanently (unless we get married, which we don't want to do) as it was extremely difficult with him doing visa runs etc. The cost, stress and worry that one day he might not be allowed back in all took its toll. Now whilst every country is different, I'd advise not getting into that situation. Either choose a place for which he can get a longer tourist visa, or find a school which will employ him for something, as has been mentioned above. Could he do a CELTA and maybe find employment as an EAL teacher? This may still cause a difficult visa situation though, especially if he is hired after entering on a tourist visa.
    However, many thousands of people do it every year, so you can always risk it if you want!
  9. miss_saigon

    miss_saigon New commenter

    If your visit is less than 15 days, British citizens are now visa-exempt (Your travel must take place before 30 June 2017)

    Tourist visas are valid for either 30 days or 90 days. A single-entry 30-day visa costs £60, a three-month multiple-entry visa is £95. I do not think with a tourist visa one can stay more than 90 days, nor get a job in Vietnam. It is best to contact the Vietnamese Embassy in Kensington, London for the lastest entry & exit formalities. Also your passport must be valid for six months upon arrival in Vietnam.
  10. pinot

    pinot New commenter

    If you get a job on a one year contract in Vietnam I will be surprised, unless of course as mentioned it is in a hellhole. Believe me, unless you are in an IB school there are a lot of hellholes - they will lie to you, not pay you, expect you to work for free for the first month and all sorts of horrible unethical practices. Do not go to one of these schools, they will just as easy replace you with a backpacker from Bui Vien Street. If you want a one year jolly then go teach EFL in somewhere like Apollo or maybe lecture at RMIT. We receive hundreds of applications and one of the first questions we ask is about how long they wish to stay here, if its for two years we thank them politely and move on. The schools are highly competitive and need stability of staff to develop even further. Please also do not think an international school in Vietnam is an easy gig - the govt schools are 6 days a week, starting at 7.30am until 5pm so our school days need to replicate this (finish at 4 though).
  11. pinot

    pinot New commenter

    Oh for five days a week of course.
  12. SecondPlace

    SecondPlace Occasional commenter

    Wholeheartedly agree about the one year comments. That's going to be a complete non-starter at any decent school.

    As for your partner - things would be so much easier if you were married. Making it easier to get visas etc. wasn't the main reason Mrs. SP and I got married, but it was certainly one of them. In lots of countries it will only be possible for schools to organise visas for spouses, not partners.
  13. the hippo

    the hippo Lead commenter Community helper

    In Russia, it is considered very improper to talk about your "partner" (or so Mrs H. tell me). In some countries in the Middle East, it will not make you popular with Muslim parents.

    Why do so many young (and some not-so-young) teachers want to go to Vietnam? If it really is so marvellous, then there will not be many teaching jobs available because all of the teachers who are already there will not want to leave any time soon.

    But maybe I am just an old and cynical hippopotamus.
  14. dumbbells66

    dumbbells66 Lead commenter

    Been there many times, its an awesome country. Definitely on my "to work" list.
  15. T0nyGT

    T0nyGT Lead commenter

    Why not just get married in a registry office? You don't have to think of yourselves as married, and you can still have a proper wedding if it happens later on down the line, but it avoids the MASSIVE headache of having a trailing 'partner' who the country you're moving to are under no obligation to recognise as your partner.

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