Holidays and Vacations
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!
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!