Teaching English in Puerto Rico

Puerto Rico Overview

Puerto Rico is a beautiful Caribbean island which is part of the US commonwealth and home to a lot of international businesses. It sees a large number of tourists who flock to the white, sandy beaches. English is an official language but less than 20% of Puerto Ricans are fluent so expect discussions about whether you are teaching EFL or ESL.┬áThe level of demand for native speakers is moderate but expect considerable competition from other experienced teachers already living in the territory.┬áTEFL salaries are some of the best in Latin America but living costs are moderate and you certainly won’t be able to save much each month. As in most Latin American countries the students are lively and sociable and therefore a pleasure to teach. If you are experienced, persistent and hard-working then you may be lucky to find one of the really well-paid positions, such as those at local universities and English-only schools, which offer excellent holidays and contract packages.

Type of Institution Typical salary (USD/month) Typical hours Typical annual leave
Language centres and local schools 1,200 – 2,000 Various Various
Universities and International schools 2,000 upwards 9am – 4pm Monday to Friday plus some weekend work 10 weeks plus national holidays

Main places for jobs

San Juan, Ponce.

Typical requirements

Degree, TEFL certificate, local interview preferred.

The University of Toronto TEFL Online - Internationally Recognized


1. Competition for the best jobs in Puerto Rico can be fierce. The more experience and qualifications you have, the better.

2. Learn some Spanish. It will improve the quality of your time in Puerto Rico, both inside and outside the classroom.

3. American and Canadian teachers may be at a slight advantage.

Red tape

Your employer is responsible for obtaining your work permit.

Cost of living

The cost of living in Puerto Rico is moderate. Local transport and food are generally quite low in price.

Tax and salary information

You should expect to be paid on a monthly basis. Make sure you actually have a contract or else you may have problems when it comes to payday.


A gorgeous Caribbean island Moderate cost of living which makes saving money difficult
Friendly, sociable students Lots of competition for the best jobs
Reasonable salaries A rather high level of crime

Directory of Recommended Schools, Language Centres and Recruitment Agencies

Would you like your school, language centre or recruitment agency to be listed here? Please contact us.

Qualified English teachers please register with World of TEFL and we will contact you with relevant vacancies as they come in. This is a free service for teachers.


  1. Angelina says:

    Thank you so much for posting this! You have no idea how hard its been for me to find information on Puerto Rico. I’m feeling encouraged again!

  2. Danion Barker says:

    Good day
    I am a 26 year old teacher living in Jamaica. I have a teaching diploma and finishing a bachelors degree. I have been teaching spanish for 5 years at the secondary school level in Jamaica. I am interested in a teach english job in Puerto Rico, so as to facilitate my learning of Spanish. How do I go about to apply for such a job?

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