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Food+accommodation (rural Australia) for Chinese lessons


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I live in rural Western Australia and I would really need to learn Chinese language. I am really at the beginning.


I would like to offer food+accommodation here where I live (big country house, I live by myself, small rural town which is 4 hours drive from Perth and 2 hours drive from Geraldton) in exchange of Chinese language lessons during the weekends (since I work on weekdays).

Do you think it could be feasable?

If so, which website I should advertise this?

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I guess you would need to check what kind of Chinese people would want to come live in your town and why.

I mean, what would they do during the week?

Is there an English as a 2nd language school around? a university? You could try to attract short or long term students.

Are there opportunities to teach Chinese to someone other than you? You could try to attract Chinese teachers.

Are there other work or entertainment opportunities around? you could try to attract workers or tourists etc.


A big problem is that you won't know whether the person is a good teacher and a good flatmate beforehand, so you may be stuck with someone that ends up useless to you...

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Good advice.


This is a farming area, so unless they know how to operate agricultural machinery all they could do will probably be offer themselves as Chinese teachers (for 20-30 AU$ an hour I guess).. other than that, there are some pubs around and the people are very friendly, and the beach is 1 hour drive away.

With a tourist visa they would not be allowed to work through the official channels (unless they come from Taiwan and then if under 30 they could apply for a Working Holiday Visa, different story).



There are some English schools in closest cities (2 and 4 hours away by car), maybe I could check them out?

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If they are working as Chinese teachers - are there enough students to keep them occupied?  Could they earn a salary legally for this?  


Might be hard to convince a Chinese person to come live on the farm and do nothing much (not to mention they'll need some kind of visa).\


Mind you if they are writing the next bestselling novel in China maybe this is a cool opportunity to live for free and teach some hours in exchange for quiet and writing time.  But this kind of person may not be a professional teacher.  And they'd still need some kind of visa.


Going to throw another idea at you - Skype lessons?  italki has a lot of teachers on it.

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Just throwing out some ideas:


- LanguageForExchange.com appears to have been set up with the idea in mind that 2 people who are both learning each other's language would love to travel to a foreign country where they could get langauge immersion from their host. Personally, I just use it to find language exchange partners. But maybe check that out. You may find some people who are just itching to travel to Australia to learn/practice their English. And in return, you could get some Chinese lessons.


- Couchsurfing.org: I'm kind of slow to discover some things, ha ha, and just recently discovered this site. Maybe check it out, and see if this would be a way to advertise your opportunity.


- There's several Homestay sites, where I've found people who live in various parts of China, who are offering the opportunity for someone to come and live with them (and in some cases they're including free room and board), in exchange for teaching English to their child every night.  Some charge, and some don't, some mention nothing about these types of barter situations, some seem to be mainly for students...so they do vary quite a bit. But here they are:



- Go on the hunt for a language exchange partner who is also a Chinese teacher, and put out your feelers...to see if they'd be interested in something like this. By the way, I learned that people on the sites, for the most part, don't really care if you can't speak a single word of the language you say you're learning. So, don't think that, just because you are brand new at learning Chinese, that you can't go on these sites and register. When I first signed up on some of these sites, I knew only a few words, lol. Some language exchange sites I've used are:


italki.com (like tysond mentioned above)

LanguageForExchange.com (like I mentioned earlier)






Good luck!


Edit: I noticed your handle or username; if you're Italian, and speak Italian, maybe someone wants to learn your language in exchange for them teaching you Chinese.

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Yes, I am also fluent in Italian - I thought it was not particularly in high demand but I will specify I could also teach that.


Thank you *a lot* for your input and the many excellent recommendations James, now I definitely have many options in front of me.

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Check out WWOOFing.  There are plenty of people coming to Australia on working holidays and you may be able to qualify as a host.  My parents have a 4 acre property in a regional town and they get WOOFers coming all the time to help out with property maintenance and other things so that might work out in your favour.


They get a mix of nationalities, including Japanese, Taiwanese, Korean as well as from various European nations (not so many mainland Chinese though).  It's apparently comparatively easy for Taiwanese to get working holiday visas so that would be a good option if you were interested in learning Mandarin.


In addition, people on working holdiays who work on a farm/regional area for 3 months can qualify for a one year extension to their visa, so if you live in a rural area there is an incentive for people to come and stay for at least 3 months of time.


That being said, you will probably get more benefit through online teaching/language exchange than in getting someone to come out and stay with you.

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That's another very good idea, thank you.

There are indeed many farmers around here who employ backpackers to work on their farms (and usually they pay them, so I guess it's not wwoof) for 3 months so that they can extend their working holiday visa; maybe I could offer food and accommodation here until they find a job in the farms. When they do, they would have to go live in the farms though.

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If you actually live on a farm, or you are close to a farmer, and you can have the person staying with you certified (by yourself or the farmer) as having worked for 3 months on a farm, you will find no shortage of Taiwanese people willing to take you up on your offer.


The reason for this is that the working holiday visa (applicable for Taiwanese or HK people, but not mainland Chinese) can be extended for an additional year after working on a farm for 3 months.

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