This website is supposed to provide qualifying ‘teachers' with the opportunity to teach English to Chinese students part-time for extra cash. But what are the requirements? Also, does it pay enough to make it worth your time? Can you really make money with VIPKid? These are the most important questions, so I took a closer look at it to see what it was all about.
You can find this site at https://t.vipkid.com.cn/. I found it while doing some research online, looking for side hustles that could potentially help me to earn some serious extra money. I love the idea of using websites and side-hustles, and as a writer, tutoring or teaching is obviously something that I could potentially make some money at.
The only problem is that I don’t necessarily have the time to meet up with people in the real-world for how much money it costs. By the time you factor in the driving time, the traffic, and how much work it would take to rearrange my busy schedule, I just don’t have those kind of ‘optional gaps’ in the day available very often.
And that is what brings us to the online world. I love the idea of using websites as side hustles, because they offer a ton of flexibility that the brick-and-mortar world does not. Using websites, I can simply log on from the comfort of my home office without even starting up my car! This not only gives me access to more opportunities, but also decreases the amount of time and money required for me to find work.
It also comes at a cost, though. A lot of websites like this end up not paying out as much… and some of them don’t even pay out enough to make them worth the time.
But VIPKids sounds like it should be different.
I heard that you can make $18 an hour on this website. But is it true?
I decided to look into it to find out. Here is what I discovered!
VIPKid: Getting Started
When I first visited the site, I was greeted with the home page banner, which said this…
“Part-time Teaching. Full-time Fun. Join the VIPKID English Teaching Community!”
Still not quite sure what this site was all about, I scrolled down to learn more. Here is what I found.
This page gave me quite a bit of useful information about the site. As it turns out, VIPKid provides ‘an international learning experience to Chinese children.’ This is basically an English tutoring website. Teachers on this site get paid to tutor Chinese students in English.
My next question was this: Do you have to be bilingual to use VIPKid?
I checked the FAQ section, and while this question wasn’t explicitly asked, this did not seem to be the case. I believe that you just have to speak English in order to be able to teach using VIPKid.
But, there are a few other requirements. For one, you must have a Bachelor’s Degree to work with VIPKid. They will not even accept applicants who do not have such a degree.
You can also work for them from pretty much anywhere, as long as you have a stable internet connection.
As far as the application process goes, it is actually quite involved. Here are the steps that you must go through to apply for VIPKid.
- You must submit your resume
- You must take part in a 1 on 1 interview that lasts for about 30 minutes
- You must watch videos that teach you how to use the curriculum
- You take part in a mock class to help you practice
- You sign the contract, upload your documents, and get a background check
- You then become a full-fledged VIPKid teacher
Up to this point, I must admit that I was quite pleased with how everything looked. I mean, it is challenging to get started on this site, due to the amount of work it takes to earn a position. But… at the same time, this makes the website a lot more ‘legit’ than other sites I’ve run into.
But I was curious about exactly how much this site paid out, so that was the next thing that I researched.
How Much Does VIPKid Pay?
VIPKid does a pretty good job of explaining how much they pay out. And yes, you can earn as much as $18 an hour—but not at first. You have to work up to it. Here is a chart that shows their payout structure.
Teachers are paid via direct bank deposit between the 10th and 15th of each month. So, you rack up hours and get paid once a month with the money deposited directly into your bank account—which is not a bad gig at all.
Applicants who pass their screening process will get a 6 month contract. You will be able to renew the contract after this period if everything goes well. You also need to inform the site 2 weeks in advance if you plan to take any time off.
By all accounts, this sounds like a legitimate business. But make no mistake. According to the company FAQ, teachers are technically independent contractors, and are responsible for all of their own taxes and such.
Teachers get bookings with students first by entering their weekly availability a month in advance, though they can also receive bookings as late-notice as 24 hours in advance. You get scheduled classes by the company, and they recommend that you make yourself available to teach for at least 7.5 hours, at Beijing peak times, which tend to be Monday through Friday from 6 to 10pm, or Saturday-Sunday from 9am to 10pm.
Now that I had looked through the website, I found myself curious about what other review sites had to say about VIPKid. So I did some looking around. Here is what I found on that front.
What Other Review Sites Had To Say About VIPKid
First of all, I learned that this company used to have more stringent requirements for teachers. Not too long ago, they also required a year of tutoring or teaching experience. You also needed to have a bachelor’s degree in a related field, instead of just a bachelor’s degree.
So, it is now easier to get work on VIPKid than it has ever been before.
I was made aware of the technical requirements as well, which were actually pretty simple. You need a computer, a webcam, access to the internet, and a high quality headset. These things were probably also listed on the website, but I was not made aware of them there—so it was good that I found them by looking through reviews.
Some of the downsides that other reviewers have pointed out are as follows. For one, the scheduling is a bit restricted. You will have to make and keep appointments on a schedule to work for VIPKid, so that takes away from the flexibility of the site.
You also apparently need to work a minimum number of hours to use VIPKid, so if you cannot work at all during peak times, this job is probably not going to be for you.
My Personal Feelings About VIPKid
This website offers a truly legitimate opportunity for anyone looking to make some money from home. They pay well, they offer raises, and they are definitely a competitive player in the online extra-cash world.
This is probably not a job that you will be able to do ‘quickly’ or ‘on your own time’ though. This is a job that will require you to show up (at your computer) at a certain time and keep appointments… so therein lies its downside.
If you are trying to make it as a freelancer, or have a job with flexible hours, and want to supplement with this site and meet the requirements for it, then I feel like it could probably work really well.
I will not personally be using this site because the hours don’t really match up with my available times. But if it did match up more, I would most certainly try using it.
I think that VIPKid is one of the more legitimate sites that I’ve reviewed, and if you want to earn some extra cash (or start a freelancing gig) by helping Chinese students who want to learn how to speak English, then this would be a great place to start.
If you need absolute flexibility, then this one may not be for you. It is, however, both profitable and consistent… and that is a rare combination when it comes to online money-making opportunities.
So VIPKid gets two thumbs up from me!
Our Final Thoughts About VIPKid
Should you use it to try to make some extra money?
There are a lot of ways to make money online. Some are good, some not, but ALL of them are still just trading hours for dollars.
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