How to avoid heading back to the office as Lockdown restrictions are eased

As the push to reopen the country’s economy intensifies, those who have enjoyed working from home during lockdown, or who have lost their jobs as a result of it, may be looking for ways to avoid heading back to an office environment.

With the rise in remote work opportunities as a result of the pandemic, South Africans wanting to eliminate the daily commute for good, have more options available to them than ever before.

“The lockdown has given us a taste of the benefits of working from home, including increased productivity and decreased travel time, which directly translates into money saved and more freedom to schedule leisure activities. People don’t want to lose that,” says Tom Gibbons, Director at the TEFL Academy, South Africa’s leading course provider of teaching English as a foreign language.

For job seekers unable to return to physical offices due to co-morbidities or risk factors associated with age, becoming TEFL qualified and teaching English online is a viable way to secure income during this uncertain time.

With average salaries between R190 and R560 per hour, depending on experience, teaching English as a foreign language online could be the solution for South Africans in search of something different post-lockdown.

“Setting up an online teaching environment at home is simple, especially for those who have already been working from home for the past few months. All you need is a stable internet connection, headphones, a laptop with a webcam, and a legitimate TEFL qualification – which can be completed within four to six weeks and accessed from anywhere in the world,” says Gibbons.

An international survey conducted by The TEFL Academy, which looked at the impact of Covid-19 on the TEFL industry, has revealed the top five reasons to teach English online, according to qualified teachers:

  1. Social distancing – safety of teachers and learners
  2. Remote working
  3. Flexible schedule
  4. Increased job opportunities
  5. Interacting with students from around the world

“As within any major change, we can be certain that with the losses, there will be new opportunities. Physical distancing and hygiene measures have been cemented into our daily lives for the foreseeable future, making office work much more a chore. At the same time, a whole host of alternative money-making opportunities have become available as a result – it’s up to us to make the most of all the new possibilities,” says Gibbons.

Offering accessible, flexible and cost-effective ways to get TEFL qualified, The TEFL Academy provides internationally accredited and regulated online courses. Using data collected from their survey, The TEFL Academy have put together a comprehensive resource to help teachers understand the current status of the TEFL industry, as well as plan for 2021. The resource includes information around travel restrictions for popular destinations, current trends in the teaching English market and statistics for the growth of online teaching. For more information, visit


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