The Kingdom of Bahrain is an island country in the Persian Gulf off the Eastern coast of Saudi Arabia. The name Bahrain literally means Kingdom of Two Seas. It has a population of 800,000 and is a wealthy country with the fastest growing economy in the Arabic world.
The climate is hot in the summer, and pleasant for the remaining eight months of the year. The country has a modern infrastructure with reliable internet, satellite TV and telephone access.
Teaching & Conditions
There is a reasonable demand for teachers, however many jobs seek highly qualified individuals with a commensurate salary. The minimum qualification to teach here is usually a degree and a TEFL Certificate such as the IWEB TEFL Certificate. Many higher paid jobs will look for experience and an MA as well. A criminal background check may also be required.
Teaching is General English but there is also a great demand (as might be expected) for Business English. Because you may well be teaching adults, this will take place out of normal working hours either early in the morning or in the evening.
Accommodation is usually provided by your employer or at least organized by them before you arrive. You may well be given an allowance to cover this. Some schools (though not all) will also reimburse the cost of your flight to Bahrain; they may also include health cover, etc. Teaching contracts are usually for one or two years.
The school will usually arrange your residency permit and help with the visa which must be obtained before you arrive in the country. Although some teachers come over on a 15 day tourist visa at the peak hiring time (end of August/beginning of September) it is usually best to arrange work beforehand by contacting schools directly.
Salaries start at around $1500 USD (€1187, £954) per month rising to around $3000 USD (€2374, £1909) depending on experience and qualifications. Private lessons at around $50 USD are a useful way of supplementing your income. Income is often tax free.
Bahrain is one of the more liberal countries in the Middle East, bear in mind that it can still be very different to what you might expect. Women, for example, will find it more restrictive than most western countries however less restrictive than, say, Saudi.
Bahraini society is heterogeneous and cosmopolitan. Western style shopping malls, restaurants, bars and clubs are numerous. Western food items, cigarettes and alcohol are readily available (except during Ramadan). Western dress is acceptable for both men and women, although dressing modestly in public is advised for both. All faiths and races are welcomed and there are no restrictions on the practice of religion.