Time off

Holidays and Vacations in Asia

International school schedules generally follow the Western education system, with school in session Monday through Friday, approximately 180 days a year and summers off. That said, international schools often have longer holidays during the school year and a shorter summer break, allowing for a more well-rounded vacation plan! Most schools have a week off in autumn break, three weeks off at Christmas, a week off in the winter (February time frame), another week off during spring, and then two months off for summer.

During school holidays teachers usually use their excess income to explore neighboring cities and countries, often together. ESL schools either go year round, with periodic breaks throughout the year, or they follow a summer-off schedule similar to international schools. For some great travel ideas, including adventure travel, we recommend the travel website Destinations Uncovered – in our opinion the most interesting travel info out there!

Chinese people legally enjoy over 115 days off including 104 days of weekends and 11 days of festivals. Students and teachers have summer and winter vacations for about three months. The summer vacation in China generally starts around July 1st and ends around August 31st, and the winter vacation usually falls on January or February according to the date of the Spring Festival. China has seven legal holidays in a year, including New Year’s Day, Spring Festival, Qingming Festival, May Day, Dragon Boat Festival, Mid-Autumn Day and National Day

Korean students follow a similar pattern as those in China, with Summer and winter vacation, and celebrate the following national holidays: New Year’s Day, Lunar New Year, Spring Vacation, Independence Movement Day, Arbor Day, Buddha’s Birthday, Memorial Day, Constitution day, Liberation day, Korean Thanksgiving Day, Winter Break, Christmas

Weekends Off

Teachers abroad often use their weekends to relax, travel around the country, or explore their local area. Inside a teacher’s host city, a typical weekend could include many of the same activities available in Western countries. For movie lovers, larger cities probably have English speaking theaters, while in smaller cities people often gather at someone’s home for a movie night. Parties and game nights are also popular, as is shopping for unique local treasures.

For other social activities, most cities have many different clubs teachers can join. You can find an American or International Women’s Association in many countries, and this organization hosts cultural and charitable events for female expatriates living in the city. For a more laid back group, the Hash House Harriers is a running/social group in which many expats participate in most major cities around the world, even in English speaking countries. Check them out, but leave your inhibitions at home!