Bibo is the easiest company to start teaching English online with, read on to find out why…
I started my online English teaching journey with Bibo in 2016 so I’m able to give you a full and honest review of what it’s like to work for them.
By the end of this article you’ll have a clear idea of how much you’ll be paid per hour, the type of students you’ll be teaching and how to get hired on your first demo lesson.
If you’re super eager to know details then I’ve included a quick list of pros and cons about Bibo. For the full review keep reading…
- Flexible Scheduling
- No experience / qualifications needed
- Polite Japanese Students
- No lesson planning needed
- Not the highest paid
If you have any questions that I haven’t answered by the end of this article then feel free to leave a comment at the end : )
How Much Does Bibo Pay Their Teachers?
Native speakers at Bibo earn $10 per hour. $1 is deducted from every $10 for Philippines tax (where the company is based). This means you’ll actually be paid $9 an hour or $4.50 per 25 minute lesson.
Payment is made via Western Union into your bank account or PayPal depending on your location.
Personally I have always been paid on time, with a detailed breakdown of my pay on my payslip. Any queries I’ve had have been dealt with promptly and thoroughly.
Does BIBO Require Teaching Experience or a TEFL?
Bibo doesn’t require a TEFL, formal teaching qualifications or a university degree. It also doesn’t require any type of teaching or school experience.
Native Teachers & Non-Native Teachers
Bibo accepts native speakers from the UK, USA, South Africa, New Zealand, Australia and Ireland.
Non-native speakers can also work for Bibo too but the pay is much less and English skills need to be clearly demonstrated in the interview lesson.
Bibo’s Flexible Teaching Schedule
One of the best parts of teaching at Bibo is that there is no minimum or maximum hours required each month.
There are peak times (6am to 8am | 8pm to 11:30pm) but you are not required to open specifically in those hours.
Lesson length & Structure
Lessons are 25 minutes long. Students can choose materials, free talk or bring their own materials.
The good news is, there’s no need to plan any lessons. Usually students choose their lesson topics before the lesson.
Lessons are now taught on Bibo’s own platform online. If there are connection problems you can revert back to using Skype.
What type of students will I be teaching?
Bibo has a mixture of students from around the world though most students are from Japan. I have also taught students on Bibo who are from South-Korea, Taiwan, Thailand, Russia and Spain, though this is unusual.
There’s also a mixture of ages from age 3 right up to 85 plus. You can also specify on your profile if you’d like to teach children.
Finding this article useful? You can say thank you by entering the code u0800 when you apply on the Bibo website & become my new favourite reader!
What do you need to get started at Bibo?
You need a stable WiFi connection as all lessons use both video and audio. The minimum upload and download speed is 0.5 Mbps. You can check this on www.speedtest.net.
To have great audio & microphone quality you’ll need a headset. For the last few years I’ve used a C320 Plantronics headset. Recently I’ve moved onto the Logitech H340 which also has a clear microphone & is super comfy to wear. I always get compliments from my students about how clear my audio is with this headset.
Can you teach English with Bibo on a tablet or smartphone?
Sorry guys, not this time! Bibo teachers are only allowed to teach on a PC or laptop with a webcam.
Do I need to create a Skype account for my Bibo teaching?
No, Bibo will set up an account for you and email you the username and password.
Are there opportunities to move up the pay scale?
Unless there is some massive conspiracy against me, I have not found a way to be paid more per hour.
Did you know that Bibo offers Paid Training?
Yes, that’s right!
Bibo will pay you an hourly rate for all of your online training completed. This includes the initial training you will do to prepare yourself for the demo lesson.
Once you’re teaching there are also extra paid trainings you can complete which will boost your bookings rate.
The extra training usually follows this format:
- You first read an online presentation on the subject.
- Then you fill in an online form
- If all goes well, you get a nice training bonus!
- You can retake the training as many times as you want until you pass.
As well as the cheeky bonus you get from passing the training, you will get badges added to your profile which will increase your booking rate.
A few of the most popular ones you can do are: Eiken, TOEFL, OPIC, TOEIC and Let’s Go!
Earn your Bibo badges and watch your schedule book out!
What is Bibo’s support like?
Much like a warm bowl of a soup on a wet day- Bibo’s support system is comforting when you need it…
When you’re new on the job you’ll be assigned to the aptly named ‘Team Rookie’ where you have a Teacher Support contact that you can talk to and ask any questions.
Over the last 3 years I’ve always got the answers I need and the staff are always super professional and helpful.
Even through your application process, you will be assigned a mentor who you can email all your weird and wonderful (teaching related) questions to!
Sounds good, how do I apply?
Head over to Bibo’s apply now page you’ll see an easy online application form. They’ll ask you for your teaching experience, a paragraph to showcase your level of written English and then for your internet speed.
Don’t forget to say thank you and enter ‘u0800 and Beki Adams’ in the referral section. I’ll love you forever!
After that, you’ll usually hear from them within a week. Then you’ll have a quick video Skype call, so dress to impress! The reason for this call is to check the quality of your video and also check that your English is fluent.
Once you’ve passed they’ll then will schedule a training session for you.
Then young grasshopper you have just one last hurdle…. the demo lesson.
Watch out for the bearded manchild!
The demo lesson is where you can show your teaching skills off to an employee who will pretend to be an Asian child who can’t speak English.
Yep, this is all levels of weird but at least they do it through audio and don’t turn on the video…
Who will you be teaching?
This is determined by what you put on your profile, so it’s up to you.
If you love pupils that can be one of the following: snotty, sleepy, happy one minute and sad the next or all of the above then teaching kids is for you!
I personally teach a mixture of kids and adults as the trainings I’ve passed are for a range of qualifications so I generally attract both adults and kids.
For me, I enjoy an eclectic blend of having some great travel conversations then singing baby shark (with the actions obvs) to a 5-year-old.
What are the worst things about teaching English online?
So here are the bruisers.
Here’s a factoid for you: there will be times when you are bored.
Unfortunately, this is a peril of the job. That jolly feeling of knowing you can earn money in your pj’s will rub off once you’ve spent a few hours cajoling a crying child to learn that ‘B is for Ball, B, B, BALL!’ and teaching a fair few technophobes how to accept a contact request on Skype.
But- breathe, and remember why you started it- to be free of time constraints and be a crusader of your own schedule!
Not all pupils will show a willingness to learn.
Believe it or not, some students won’t come bouncing online, right on time and start the lesson eagerly awaiting your pearls of English wisdom.
Some employers in Japan make learning English part of their contract and its safe to say some employees of these companies are less than enthusiastic about this.
However, you will get a lot of lovely pupils who will make you laugh, come back for more and make the job worth it.
You won’t be every student’s cup of tea
Being a bit of a teaching perfectionist, this is the part I struggled with.
Student’s can give you a star rating out of 5 and comment on your teacher profile.
Although star ratings are anonymous, if you fastidiously check them (definitely not like me…) you can kinda work out who has given you what… and that can really hurt.
You can teach a lesson really well, give it all you’ve got – and the pupil gives you a 1 star.
BUT you just can’t please everyone. That person just might not gel with you or they might just be having a crappy day themselves.
The end. If you’ve made it this far, I’m proud of you.
Boring information about Bibo
Bibo is an online English teaching platform which uses Skype to conduct the lessons. It is especially popular in Japan, South Korea and Taiwan. Over the last 4 years, they have grown to over 100 employees and over 6000 teachers all over the world!
According to their site, they have become the number 1 online English school in Japan in just 2 years- which is pretty impressive when you think about it.