I taught ESL in Berlin for many years.
At one point, I had the highest paid teaching job in Germany…I was getting about $2000 a week, and that was in the late 70’s, early 80’s!
Nice gig while I had it - but boy did I screw that up.
Let’s just say I will never, ever, sign my name to another group letter of complaint to the powers above. There were seven of us highly-paid teachers at the time, and they fired our collective butts for that stupid letter.
Then I got a really cushy job teaching summers in Switzerland (also for a nice salary) and also taught for a large Berlin corporation that, again, was the top salary in Berlin at the time. When I quit that job to move to Los Angeles, the woman in charge of hiring said, “You are quitting this job?! You are the first person I have ever had who has quit!”
So, yes - there are really high paying jobs to be had.
That said, there are many tricks you need to know, but the most important “trick” is to be really, really good at what you do, and be original.
How I got my first big gig:
I was teaching at a private, for-profit, language school. They would get lots of businessmen who had to learn English really quickly to go to foreign countries and complete projects. I had had several people go to the States and come back and tell me stories. One guy said, “All was going great, but then the manager told me this joke with words I didn’t understand and it was very embarrasing.”
I realized the guy didn’t know the, uh, “bad” words in English. So I created a final class for my students - they were “warned” that it contained every swear word and pornographic term in English. I offered it as a “free class” farewell to my best students. I created a handout. Lets just say that there were about 30 ways to use the word “fuck” and graphic descriptions of every male and female body part.
Word got around the school that I taught that…other teachers wouldn’t go near the subject, so often they would have me come in and teach my “porno” class.
OK. So one day, I walk in to teach this class of German businessmen I had never met before, taught the class, they took copious notes and off they went.
Two weeks later I get a phone call from West Germany and a German guy said, “Are you the guy who taught our businessmen that handout sheet?”
Too late to deny it and I said, “Yes.”
“Well, anybody who has the balls to teach that is somebody we want to teach for us…are you willing to fly here for an interview - we’ll make it worth your trip.”
That is how I originally got that high paying job, and from there - well - the rest is history.
So again, there really are high paying jobs out there, but finding them and getting your foot in the door isn’t easy. However, should you get in - well, I lived quite well over there for 14 years.