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Indonesia Information and Graduate Comment

Jakarta, Indonesia – Ben Phillips (May 2009)

My name is Ben Philips and I’m currently living in Jakarta. I’m employed by Wall Street Institute http://www.wallstreet.ac.id/ The way I found this job was via Dave’s ESL Cafe: International Job Board. At the moment Wall Street Jakarta is advertising onwww.TEFL.com as well. So like most TEFL jobs round the world, those 2 sites seem to provide the largest databases for jobs in Indonesia. The other 2 big English schools are The British Institute http://www.tbi.co.id/ and EF (English First). From what I’ve read/heard TBI (The British Institute) requires at least 2 years experience; whereas English First will take people straight off a CELTA or Trinity with no teaching experience, the pay at English First is a bit lower than Wall St. or TBI, but some EF’s provide housing- this is not always the case thou, since its a franchise this varies from school to school.

Recently the government dept. of education has changed requirements, that TEFL teacher’s must have a University background in English. Note:due to government regulations, a minimum of a Bachelors degree in Linguistics (English focus), English Literature, Modern Languages (English focus), Education (English focus) or TESOL/TEFL is required. Although, as far as having an English Uni degree is concerned, it doesn’t mean you won’t be hired. it really depends on the school- so long as you have a Bachelor’s degree or equivalent they might be able to get you past (bribe the appropriate officials) visa regulations.

As for living in Jakarta.. I’ve been here for 6-months now. It’s a massive city, estimated 14-million people. Generally smiley, friendly people. It’s far more developed here than I thought it would be. We work in a shopping mall that is quite globalized (Burger King, Top Shop, Gap, McDonald’s, Marks & Spencers). That said, you can find pretty much anything here that you’d find in normal western capitalism. Honestly the city isn’t a cultural epicenter- lack of art gallery’s, theatres, etc. However, we did go to an independent film festival back in November, and last month MGMT came and played here. Things do happen you just need to hunt them out.

The traffic jams here are a bit of a nightmare if you travel at rush our. I think people go a bit insane if they just stay in Jakarta. It’s vital to get out and travel. Once you get out of the megalopolis that is Jakarta, you see how how beautiful this country really is. Indonesia consists of 15,000 islands ranging from active volcanoes, mountains, nice beaches, plus magnificent wildlife (ie: Orangutans & Komodo Dragons).

Location  links 

A list of schools can be found here:


Schools will apply for a visa for you. Make sure that you ask about this if you do contact any employers.


A list of schools




Meet the author

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