While working from home, setting your own schedule, and not having to do much planning at all might sound like all unicorns and rainbows, however there is actually quite the mix of pros and cons of teaching for VIPKid.
As with any job you’ll ever have, there will be things you love and things you absolutely hate about it. VIPKid is no different. Overall, it’s a great job to earn some money, but it is by no means perfect.
Teaching English online with VIPKid is a popular job for travelers and those living abroad because you can work remotely as long as you have an internet connection. This is why we want to break down all of the pros and cons of teaching for VIPKid.
Pros of Teaching for VIPKid
1. Easy Job
Let’s start off with the most obvious pro: teaching for VIPKid is a fairly easy job. You get to make your own hours and don’t have to do any lesson planning. Anyone who has ever taught in any capacity knows that lesson planning is time consuming, so it’s fantastic that VIPKid does it for you.
With not having to lesson plan, you don’t really have to prep for classes at all. During your first couple classes with VIPKid, you will want to preview the lessons, but after the first couple, you can wake up, stumble over to your computer, and start teaching!
The classes generally go fast, so if you have a more difficult student to work with, the class is over in 25 minutes. That’s not too bad, especially considering you could be stuck working 8+ hours a day working with boring ass spreadsheets.
Piggybacking off the previous pro of VIPKid, it’s an easy job AND you get paid $18-22 per hour!
Sure, this is not millionaire level money, but it will help pay the bills, especially if you are living somewhere with a low cost of living. At the very least, it will help cover the cost of getting a few drinks or eating out once in a while.
Back to VIPKid’s salary though. Typically, you start at $8 per class with a $1 per class incentive if you provide feedback on the class within 12 hours. Providing class feedback only takes about 1 minute, so it’s not too intensive and can be done between classes. If you do 2, 25-minute classes back-to-back with feedback you will get $18 per hour.
There are other incentives, like if you teach 30-44 classes a month you get an additional 50¢ per class. If you are teaching a lot and do 45+ classes per month, you will earn an extra $1 per class.
The more you teach, the more you will earn. Plus, the more you teach, the more your open class slots will start to fill up, which means you will be taking more money to the bank. Not bad for an easy job.
3. Tax Write-offs
When you are teaching for VIPKid, you are technically an independent contractor. This means you will need to do your taxes a little differently because VIPKid does not take any taxes out for you. Therefore, when you are calculating your income or making a budget, set some money aside because you will have to pay some back in taxes.
Yes, that definitely sounds like it should be in the con part of this post, but it’s a pro because you can write-off certain things you need to teach for VIPKid. Computer, internet, headphones, a mouse, or props are all some things that come to mind. This could end up saving you some money on stuff you were going to buy anyways, which is why it ends up as a pro.
For all the ins and outs on taxes, contact a local tax professional to help you. We aren’t accountants.
4. You Can Do It Remotely
We have obviously touched on this pro of being a VIPKid teacher already. It’s remote work! You can work from home, a hotel, hostel, on the road, or basically wherever you have an internet connection and can talk to your student who is across the world.
With working from home and remote work becoming more and more popular, so many more people are wanting to find remote jobs. Well, this is one of those!
Whether you are working with VIPKid part-time or full-time, being able to do it remotely is an excellent benefit. If it’s a full-time job, there are clear advantages. If it’s a part-time job, it’s great being able to earn some side money without having a set schedule and having to “go into work.”
Teaching for VIPKid is also flexible for travelers and people living and working abroad because it can be done on nearly all time zones too. You can sign up for VIPKid here with our referral code.
Cons of Teaching for VIPKid
Ah, yes. With any positive, there is always a negative, and VIPKid is no different. It is a great job on many fronts, but there are some downsides to working with the job too.
As briefly mentioned in the pros section, you are an independent contractor when you teach with VIPKid. This means they do not take out any taxes, so when you go to do taxes, you will have to pay them.
When you are getting all your paychecks and creating your budget with your VIPKid salary in mind, make sure to take about 30% off the top just to be safe. The full tax amount you will need to pay will depend on where you are living, but it’s something to keep in mind.
Again, contact a local tax professional to help you. We are not accountants.
2. Early Mornings
So remember how this whole teaching for VIPKid job is about teaching students in China English? Well, because the students are all in China, their schedules basically dictate your’s.
For example, we are currently living in Wisconsin, so the times when most students are available for classes on VIPKid are from 5:00 a.m. to 9:00 a.m. during their school year. Luckily, you can just roll out of bed, turn on your computer, and start teaching. However, it can be hard to get your energy levels up to teach, encourage, and sometimes simply entertain a child that early in the morning.
Hours do open up a bit during the summer because the students in China are on their summer vacations. This is an excellent way to make some extra money in the summers, especially if you work in education already and have the summers off. Otherwise, it can just be another way to make extra money during your summers.
3. No Guaranteed Hours
While teaching for VIPKid allows you to set your own schedule, you are technically just setting the hours in which you are available to teach, not the hours in which you will teach. This means that students will sign up for your open time slots, and once they sign up them, you will then be working these hours.
The obvious pro to this is that you choose your schedule. On the other hand, the con is that you might have a 25 minute class, then a 35 minute break, then another 25 minute class. This can get super annoying because you opened up your schedule expecting and hoping it would be filled. When it’s not, it sucks especially if you have multiple 35 minute breaks between classes early in the morning. It’s not enough time to go back to sleep or really do anything.
This is a definite downside to teaching for VIPKid because your hours are not guaranteed and are determined by whether or not the students sign up for your classes. A positive is that the more often you are teaching, the more likely your time slots are to fill up!
4. Difficult to Form Relationships
The other 3 cons of teaching for VIPKid are probably more important to most, but not being able to form relationships with your students can be a challenge if you are a classroom teacher and are great at building relationships. Students will often sign up for classes, do them for a while with you, and then disappear. Sometimes they give a reason. Sometimes they don’t.
Students that you really like and have taught for a while will just up and disappear leaving you disappointed. However, you’ll also have students who aren’t your favorites suddenly stop attending, leaving you relieved and hopeful for a promising new student.
It can be challenging because you never get to at least say goodbye to your students. Plus, when one student leaves it can mean their time slot might stay vacant for a while or that a new student comes in who isn’t your favorite to teach.
Again, this may not be a huge con to working with VIPKid for many people, but for others it is. Once you have familiarity with students, teaching your classes goes much smoother because they are comfortable and more willing to speak.
Teaching with VIPKid had plenty of pros and cons, just like any other job out there. You will have to decide for yourself whether you think the pros outweigh the cons and if it’s ultimately a job you want to do. This will differ from person to person, but since it’s pretty easy to get hired, you might want to check it out and give teaching for VIPKid a go.
If you love it, congrats! You just found an awesome job! If you hate it, just close your availability and never do it again.