What is Preply? A Review for Teachers

By Editorial Staff •  Updated: 02/17/22 •  Teach Online

Preply is an online tutor marketplace, similar to iTalki. Founded in 2013, Preply is quickly growing as a place to learn a second language and teach a second language.

As a teacher on Preply, you’re able to teach any language you are a native speaker of, classes are 1 on 1, you set your own rates, hours and can teach from anywhere in the world. Classes are conduced on Preply’s own internal platform and as a marketplace, you have the ability to get students organically without any marketing.

How to become a Preply Teacher

If you’re wanting to get started as a Preply teacher, the process is simple. Simply take 20 minutes and fill out the application form here. Your application will be reviewed and assessed to see if you’re a good fit or not for the Preply platform. If the teacher review team thinks you’re a good fit, you’ll move forward in the application process. If you’re not a good fit, Preply will ignore your application.

At Teach and GO, we do think Preply should at least take a moment to send a “thanks but no thanks” type email but they opt to ignore candidates who are not accepted on the platform. Please be aware that if you don’t hear anything from Preply, your application was rejected.

Due to the high volume of applicants and the rapid growth of online teaching, please give Preply a week or two to get back to you.

Application process

As part of moving forward with your application, you’ll add in your basic information, any qualification as well as a video introduction for new students. In addition, you will also be able to submit your available hours.

For the review team, make sure you pay attention to detail. Submit a well thought out, completed application, free of any grammatical errors as well as a clear explanation of your experience and qualifications.

Preply teacher qualifications

What are the specific qualifications required to become a Preply teacher? First, you must be a native speaker of whatever language you want to teach. As a potential English teacher, you must be from the UK, USA, Ireland, Australia or New Zealand.

You also do not need a degree to become a teacher on Preply as you’re considered a freelance tutor. Preply is also based in the US, so unlike VIPKID that needs their teachers to have a degree in order to comply with Chinese regulations, Preply can take on individuals with no formal education.

However, you’ll need to demonstrate some type of relevant teaching experience as well as potentially have a TEFL certificate (view our favorite free TEFL certificates).

How do you teach with Preply?

When a student signs up to Preply, they are able to search for various teachers based on different filters. When they find a teacher they like, they can book a trial lesson. Once the lesson is held, they are able to leave anonymous feedback.

After this initial trial lesson, the student will be given an opportunity to book 5, 10, 20 or 40 hours worth of lessons.

How much do Preply Teachers make?

As a freelancer, your pay is based upon the hourly rate you set, the demand for you as a teacher and the amount of lessons you teach. You also need to be aware of the variable commission Preply takes as well to your final pay.

You don’t get paid for trial lessons

As part of the onboarding process for students, they are able to book various trial classes with different teachers to see which one they like. You as the teacher don’t get paid for these trial lessons as Preply takes a 100% commission on this.

We do find this a but unfair as you should always be compensated for your time as a teacher. But again, it’s not our platform and not our rules. The main advantage to you as a teacher is that this is how Preply gets students to convert into long term lessons.

It’s also helpful for you as a teacher as this is the way you can get a steady stream of bookings. But again, we think teachers should be compensated, even to a small degree for trial lessons.

From their pay overview.

Preply commission

The trial lesson is a 100% commission for Preply. After this, all subsequent lessons have a variable rate depending on the amount of lessons the student books with you.

Students get a great discount if they book more hours and you get to keep more money when they do so as well.

0-20 hours33%
21-50 hours28%
51-200 hours25%
201-400 hours22%
400+ hours18%

Please note that the commission rate is per student. Most students will typically drop off after the 50-200 classes range.

We do find the commission rate a bit high for Preply. 20% would be a bit more fair; but again, they provide the marketplace, platform to teach and the students. But when compared to iTalki, which takes 15%, it is a bit hard to justify paying a 33% commission.

Any Penalties to be aware of?

Preply does not apply any penalties to missed classes and so forth. You simply risk having a poor review from students which could impact your rankings within the Preply marketplace.

However, like Fiverr, if you try and bypass the Preply booking system to avoid paying their high commission rate, you run the risk of being removed and banned from the platform all together.

How do you get paid?

Your pay is based on completed classes. It takes 72 hours to finalize pay for completed classes unless the student has “auto complete” on. As such, it simply takes a few days for your pay to be calculated and accrued.

To actually withdraw your funds is easy. You have your choice of PayPal, direct deposit to a prepaid Master Card from Payoneer or Skrill.

Does Preply have a referral program?

Preply does have a referral program, but it’s only designed for students and not teachers. Most companies have an overwhelming amount of potential teachers (VIPKID for example stopped their affiliate program).

What companies and platforms need is paying students. If you do decided to use Preply as a student, know that when you refer a student they get 30% off their trial lesson and you get that 30% added to your account.

Preply for teachers conclusion

All in all, we like Preply. They are a hybrid of an online teaching company and a true freelance platform like iTalki or Fiverr.

While we do think their commission rates are a bit excessive and we don’t appreciate how teachers are not compensated for trial lessons; Preply at least provides the platform and marketplace to find students and the sales funnel to convert trials in long term students.

If you’re a successful Preply teacher, it’s totally possible to have a group of regular students where you teach lessons to regularly. This will reduce your commission rate to Preply long term and will result in more money in your bank account.

Editorial Staff

I'm David Unwin and I head the editorial staff here at Teach and GO. I've taught as an ESL teacher in Thailand for 5+ years at all levels of education, from elementary to University. I was also one of the first 1000 VIPKID teachers. I and my team now share my extensive experience as a teacher here at Teach and GO. Learn more.

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