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Working in Bulgaria/Romania

Discussion in 'Teaching abroad' started by missm11, Apr 26, 2020.

  1. missm11

    missm11 New commenter

    Hi all. I'm new to the forum so apologies if this has been asked many times before. I'm very interested in teaching in Eastern Europe and am being drawn in particular to Bulgaria/Romania. Could anybody give me an idea of the sort of package which is offered in international schools in this area or does it massively vary? I'm wondering most of all about savings potential and whether return flights and medical insurance etc are generally included in the package?

    Also, how easy is it to settle into these countries? Is it easy to mix with locals as well as expats? I've worked in South East Asia, the Middle East and North America and have had great opportunities but at times, in some schools, felt very much in the expat bubble and would prefer the chance to mix with lots of different people, learn the language and really get to know the country.
  2. dumbbells66

    dumbbells66 Lead commenter

    Check out the schools association for the region. Www.CEESA.org.

    One great school in each country, not British curriculum though. Good package for the region, and i have a large number of friends in the one in Romania, and only one now in Sofia. All of them have managed to save a decent amount while living in very nice countries.
  3. norwichred

    norwichred Occasional commenter

    I think that a rather smelly pachyderm might be along in a minute.....
  4. bead

    bead New commenter

    I have never worked as a teacher in Bulgaria. I have however been associated with the country for over 30 years and have lived there for the last 17 years. I would go for it. Good salary and good package in both countries. Romania offers a bigger choice of schools and I have a few ex colleagues from the middle east working there now and loving it. From young singles to older people with children, they seem to be very happy. From what I have heard, the overall packages offered are among the best in Europe, although you would have to ask the particular schools what they offer as I would imagine it would vary. There are cheap flights from both Sofia and Bucharest to many parts of the world.
    From both Sofia and Bucharest, the black sea coast is easily accessible and if you go to the smaller towns, north of Varna in particular the price of accommodation is very reasonable and believe it or not three superb golf resorts, one of which apparently was ranked as one of the best in the world.
    This region (Dorudzha) is probably closer to Bucharest than Sofia.
    Mixing with locals? Easy. The people are friendly and obliging, although not so much in Sofia as the provinces. You will easily learn the language. It is not so difficult to pick up enough to have a basic conversation.
    The one thing I would say is that accommodation and utility bills are very expensive in both Sofia and Bucharest, so bear this in mind, although I know some people who have used the allowances to buy a house. Prices in Bulgaria for food and nearly everything else have doubled in the last 5 years, but overall, the general cost of living is probably about 50% of the UK.
    I would however say be careful and think twice about resigning from a permanent post . The current climate with Covid 19 is screwing up everything and we are currently on lockdown here until further notice.People are also losing their jobs left right and centre so there may not be so many parents putting their children into private schools.
  5. bedby9

    bedby9 New commenter

    I agree with all the above.

    Packages vary a little but not much in Bucharest. I am in Bucharest with my spouse and we save on average a salary a month, which is approx £2500 (this is TLR and Accom combined).

    Absolute zero regrets about coming here. Amazing city, a hidden gem and stunning countryside.
  6. missm11

    missm11 New commenter

    Dumbbells - thanks for the advice - I'll check that out and Bead, thanks so much for all of the information - that's really helpful.

    I'm on a sort of mid career gap year currently so the risk of applying for jobs is not so much as an issue as it would have been if I had a permanent position, but I am concerned about any potential job offer falling through. It's such a tricky situation for everyone who's job hunting at the moment. For me personally, if I wait until next year, I'm very concerned that it would be a gap of two years on my CV. Much harder to justify.
  7. Rott Weiler

    Rott Weiler Star commenter Forum guide

    @the hippo
  8. missm11

    missm11 New commenter

    Sorry - am a bit confused!
  9. Rott Weiler

    Rott Weiler Star commenter Forum guide


    @the hippo is a TES member with a lot of knowledge and experience of teaching in Bulgaria and Romania and who will, I'm sure, be happy to help you. I tagged him in post #6 to alert him to you question. (He refers to himself quite often on here as "a rather smelly pachyderm". Other than that hippos are classified as pachyderms I don't why!)
  10. missm11

    missm11 New commenter

    Oh great - thanks Rott Weiler and if The Hippo can help I'd be very grateful. I'm doing lots of my own research, but hearing directly from people living and working there is so useful. :)
  11. missm11

    missm11 New commenter

    Bedby 9 - thanks!
  12. the hippo

    the hippo Lead commenter Community helper

    Did someone mention me? With a build-up like that, I reckon that anything I write is going to be a bit of an anti-climax.

    bead has already written quite a lot of things about BG that are very accurate, so I am not sure that I have much to add. Yes, of course, missam11, I will send you a TES Conversation. In the meantime, you can all admire the view from the top balcony of our country house, about 60kms north of Sofia.

    elenivsk likes this.
  13. sid1913

    sid1913 New commenter

    HI Bedby9, have messaged you. Sometimes this forum works for me, most of the time, not. Cheers
  14. Mitochondria1

    Mitochondria1 Occasional commenter

    Bucharest and Romania are great places to teach. The British schools there pay ok, around 2500 GBP, the American one has the best package. The Royal Tree school is up and coming, the others I'd give a pass unless you're looking at the Dracula school in Cluj.
  15. bedby9

    bedby9 New commenter

    missm11 - what do you teach???
  16. missm11

    missm11 New commenter

    Thanks Mitochondria!
  17. elenivsk

    elenivsk New commenter

    Could you start a TES conversation with me as well please Mr hippo? I am new and can't start a conversation. I would like to ask some questions about Sofia as well.
  18. the hippo

    the hippo Lead commenter Community helper

    Yes, of course, elenivsk.
  19. missm11

    missm11 New commenter

    bedby9 I'm a primary school teacher with English as specialism.
  20. quinnsafe

    quinnsafe New commenter

    I'm considering a move nearer home next academic year 2021-2022 I mean. I'm currently in a good Bangkok school where my husband is just finishing his 'on the job' pgcei with Warwick University. He's an Oxford graduate too though which always helps :) I'm an EY teacher with 15 yrs experience. We have 2 children who will be 10 and almost 13 next summer so if we do it I need this to be the right move for my family. I'm toying with Romania/Bulgaria/Hungary maybe even Austria or Netherlands. We have a good lifestyle here and I know we need to be somewhere with fairly cheap standard of living in order to travel and save a bit too which seems a tall order too far west in Europe (sadly). Any thoughts about bringing kids of this age to these countries? Friendships and social life for them etc? General info? Thanks everyone, appreciate it.

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