Flexibility: High (for planning when to go);  Low (during the program)

Social Engagement: High

What’s What: If you are a native English speaker and love talking to people and experiencing new cultures, you can volunteer to speak English with people in exchange for free room and board in many parts of Europe.

Amava Take: Want to travel without spending a fortune on places to stay?  Like talking to people from different cultures? Ready for something out of the ordinary?  Become an English speaking mentor! Your room and board and meals are covered and you’ll meet some fascinating people. Travel to and from Europe is not covered–so look for bargain fares or maybe those frequent flyer miles you’ve been saving up!

From the Front Office:

What kinds of candidates are you looking for to fill these jobs?

People that are fluent in English, like to talk with other people, and that are open to getting to know people from different backgrounds.

Any tips for first-timers to make it a productive and fulfilling experience?

Come prepared with some topics you like to talk about.

What’s a typical day like?

Lots and lots of talking to people. To read reviews from people who have been English speaking mentors read this account from One Weird Globe and this account from Charlie on Travel.  

From the Trenches:  

What’s the most satisfying part of the job?

Immersion travel is an amazing way to expand your idea of what another culture is really like.

How would you describe the hard parts?

Sometimes it takes effort to acclimate to living in someone else’s home.

What’s the most memorable experience you had as an English speaking mentor?

Realizing that in many countries, people do not define themselves by their chosen career.

Special Requirements: Generally, you need to be a native English speaker, and have a high school diploma, a passport from the United Kingdom, Ireland, Australia, New Zealand, South Africa, Canada or the United States, good communication skills, a range of interests and a clean police record.

Related Classes: Train to Teach English Abroad or Online, Become a Certified TEFL Educator, Keys to Effective Communication, Interpersonal Communication

Finding a Position: Angloville has programs throughout the year in eight countries in Europe, including Poland, Hungary, Czech Republic, England, and Romania. You can do just one program, or combine several programs into one trip. Most programs are between 3-11 days and you can also schedule them with breaks for travel in between. For lots of positions (both volunteer and paid) teaching English in other countries, Dave’s ESL Cafe, run by Dave Sperling is a great resource. If you want to hear recommendations from people who have experience, check out the forums on this site.