Palfish Review and Pay, Get Paid from an App?

Note: this company recently changed its policies and this post may be inaccurate. If you have further information about Palfish, please contact me at

Disclosure: This article may contain affiliate links, meaning that when you make a purchase, I earn a small commission. Affiliate links cost you nothing to use and help keep my content free. For more info, see the Disclosure Policy.

What is Palfish?

Palfish is a popular online English teaching app for teachers with or without a degree. It connects students and teachers by an app. It has a variety of levels that you can teach and is an excellent tool for teachers and students alike.

Palfish is different from all other online teaching platforms and may be compared to a social media platform. You can teach using just your mobile phone.

What can I expect from Palfish?

  • Work from home as an independent contractor
  • Teach from your tablet or iPad
  • Set your own flexible schedule
  • Teach children from Asia
  • $8.00 to $11.00 USD per hour
  • No degree required

Join Palfish

Is Palfish Legit?

Yes, Palfish is a legit company that pays teachers once per month using Payoneer. Palfish is a reliable way to earn money online and it is especially suitable for those who want to earn an income from home or while travelling.

Palfish has a flexible schedule that allows you to teach remotely using their smartphone or tablet application.

travel abroad teach palfish

Many digital nomads like to use Palfish while traveling to low-cost destinations such as Vietnam or Thailand. Teachers choose Palfish because it offers them a very flexible schedule that you can change frequently.


  • Work from your smartphone or tablet, no laptop required
  • Does NOT require a degree
  • Fast and stable internet connection
  • Open to native and non-native English speakers
  • Exclusive Philippines course available, only hiring Filipinos
  • You should also consider purchasing a pop socket or phone holder for your device. This will help you angle your device.

Palfish Reviews -What do Teachers Think of Palfish?

Pros of Palfish

  • Wonderful students
  • On-time salary
  • No degree required
  • Flexible schedule

Among teacher reviews, Palfish is a very well-received and recommended app. The most significant advantage is that Palfish doesn’t require teachers with a degree. Students are very polite, and understanding and the pay is on time.

It is noted as a good side income to support your current job or even as your main job if you’re getting enough bookings. You also teach small 1-on-1 classes and all the lesson material is prepared for you. There is no homework correction, which saves you a lot of time.

Cons of Palfish

  • Requires marketing
  • Penalties for absences
  • Slow customer support

When discussing the negative aspects, teachers say that customer support can be slow to respond. Another negative to consider is the lack of bookings for new teachers.

There is the risk that you won’t receive as many bookings for the first while. To avoid this, you need to ‘market’ yourself through their social media platform on the app. This means you will need to post pictures, kind of like Instagram. Basically, by showing students that you exist, you will receive more classes.

A lot of tutors left Palfish during the pandemic. At the time, the Chinese government banned online English language tutoring and it caused many companies to downsize massively or totally collapse. Palfish slashed tutors’ pay during this time, which left tutors with no choice but to quit.

Just know that when you work for a company as an independent contractor, you don’t have the same security as a full-time job! It can come with some heartache and therefore it’s important to diversify your income streams or teach for more than one company.

Teach English Online

You may also be interested: Our Top-Rated English Teaching Companies in 2022.

For a further review on Palfish, please see the video below:

loading videos
Loading Videos…

Palfish Salary – How Much Does Palfish Pay?

  • The salary varies from course to course
  • For the Palfish Freetalk, you set your own rates. Average rates are $10-$17 per hour
  • The Official Kids Course is $8.00 to $11.00 per hour
  • The Philippines Course (exclusive to Filipinos) is $5 or 268 PHP per hour

Types of Palfish courses:

There are three types of courses on Palfish.

1. The Free Talk Course

  • Open to native and non-native English speakers
  • No lesson preparation
  • Set your own rates and schedule
  • No minimum hours required
  • Talk to kids and adults

Students on Palfish can audio call general Palfish teachers to practice speaking English. You could potentially talk to anyone, from business professionals to children from China. This is a good way to learn about the culture and have a genuine English conversation.

No lesson preparation is required as this is just a free talk session. You can correct their grammar, encourage conversation and help the student with pronunciation.

This is the easiest way to make money with Palfish and has the lowest barrier to entry. It requires no qualifications and is open to non-native speakers. They hire teachers from anywhere, and it allows you to set your own rates.

According to Palfish, the average rates set by teachers are $10-$17 per hour. I have seen as much as 5 RMB per minute (0.70 USD per minute). This means you can earn up to $42 per hour. Warning, you can only change your tuition rate twice per month, so you need to think about how much you really want to charge.

2. The Official Kids Course

  • $8.00 to $11.00 USD per hour
  • $15 prop supplement for new teachers
  • Native English speakers from US, Ireland, Canada, UK, Australia, New Zealand
  • Teacher Certificate required
  • No Bachelor’s degree required

The Official Palfish course is a structured course with lesson material provided. These video lessons are catered to Asian children aged 3-12 years old.

You must commit to a minimum of 3.5 hours a week between 6 pm-9 pm Beijing Time. The schedule is quite flexible and you can open as many hours as you wish.

All the teaching material is prepared in advance and you will teach one-on-one classes. This means that you don’t have to lesson plan, you can just teach!

TEFL Certification

You need an ESL certificate to teach at Palfish. Here are some very affordable options:

tefl academy

In-depth, Internationally-recognized TEFL courses for those who want to teach online or abroad. Get qualified.

tefl ioa 1

Most suitable for some online part-time teaching. Accepted by some teaching companies. Get our special discount.

Join Palfish

Download by clicking the button or enter our invitation code 92170643.

Sign up to Palfish and contact us at; if you have any concerns with your application, we would be glad to assist you.

3. The Philippines Course

  • You must be an English teacher from the Philippines
  • Earn up to 268 PHP per hour
  • Other bonuses apply

The Philippines’ exclusive course (only hiring Filipinos) teaches children aged 3-12 years old. It pays up to 268 PH/Hour (5 USD an hour). This rate will increase as you continue to teach more lessons. You are required to have a teaching certificate (such as TEFL, TESOL, etc. ).

The course is very interactive with songs and getting students to draw on the screen. After the lesson, you write a short comment to give the student some feedback.

The Philippines Course is basically the same as the Official Kids Course, except it is geared towards Filipino teachers.

Join Palfish

Download by clicking the button or enter our invitation code 92170643.

Please email if you have any questions during the interview process and we will help you out!

Palfish Teaching Hours

  • You can teach the Official Kids course and the Philipines course from 6 pm to 10 pm on weekdays and from 10:30 am to 10:00 pm at weekends Beijing Time (UTC+8)
  • Free talk and live streaming are available during daytime hours in China.
  • Convert time zones here
Teacher Email Signup

For English Language Teachers or Those Looking to Get Started…

Teacher tips, new teacher checklist, teacher planner, and notes. Subscribe for ESL News, jobs, and more!

Palfish Teacher Application Process:

Palfish have a quick, easy application process to get you started in as little as 2 days.

  1. Sign Up for Palfish
  2. Download the application
  3. Create your account
  4. Set up your Payoneer account
  5. Wait for your account to be approved
  6. Complete the interview and quiz
  7. When approved, immediately begin to receive students

View the Palfish official application checklist here.

1. Sign Up for Palfish

Enter your phone number to complete the registration process. You should be able to download the application.

2. Download the Application

If you are already registered, go to the app store and download the teachers’ app. Download it on your phone or tablet.

Enter our invitation code, and we will help you get started: 92170643. You can enter the invitation code by selecting the ‘Me’ tab in the bottom menu, and clicking the gear (settings icon) in the upper right. Click the ‘Inviter – Enter invitation code’ field. You can contact us with any questions you have during the process.

Palfish Signup

3. Enter Your Basic Information on the App

After verifying your phone number and downloading the app, you will have to enter some basic information on the application, such as your name, location and photo. You will also need to enter a verification code from your phone.

This verification code may expire, so try to do this step quickly or request another verification code.

4. Add Time slots and Create Your Profile

You can add your availability by selecting the time slots you want to teach. You must teach a minimum of 3.5 hours per week on Palfish, so add at least seven time slots. When you pass the application process, these time slots will open and the slots may be filled with students.

Create your account with your phone number and email address. You can also include an audio recording, your photo, and your personal details. This will encourage students to sign up for your classes.

All you need is a concise, welcoming introduction for students. You are free to add lots of emojis!

Personal Profile Details Required for Palfish
Personal Profile for Palfish

You will also have to upload documents, such as your teaching certificate and ID. Add your Payoneer account to collect your salary. This works out cheaper than regular bank accounts and offers the mid-market exchange rate when receiving currency from abroad.

You can also add tags to describe your teaching style and your interests.

tags palfish

Set Up a Payoneer Account

Set up a Payoneer account to receive your salary from Palfish each month.

Palfish issues your salary between the 1st and 7th of each month. Using a Payoneer account instead of your bank details is a good idea as it avoids excessive bank charges. You can then transfer the money from your Payoneer account to your bank account. The Payoneer account also works for Filipinos.

Sign Up For Payoneer Here and get $25 when you receive $1000 (one month of teaching).

5. Account Approval

Wait until Palfish verifies your account. This can take up to 3 days before they activate your account. While you are waiting, you can explore the Palfish app and learn more about it.

When your account passes, you will be allowed to complete the next round, which is the interview stage.

palfish application process

6. Interview with No Interviewer

Check the app regularly to see if you’ve passed the basic information round. When you are approved, you can proceed to the interview. This is not a real interview with another person, and you can book the interview any time you like.

This will involve recording a demo class, which will be reviewed before you are approved to teach kids.

How to Pass the Interview

When you book a time slot, you will be allowed to preview and practice the teaching material in preparation for the interview. It’s a good idea to prepare a teacher background and have 2-3 props to use.

For example, you might like to have a puppet and some stars to award the student for doing a good job. There won’t be a student in the class with you, you will have to use your imagination and pretend there is a student.

You could also have the Palfish logo as your background, and your name “Teacher —“. This is just a suggestion; there are many beautiful backgrounds you could have.

Enter the classroom at the allocated time you scheduled the interview and complete the recorded interview. There will be no interviewer there, so it is just you performing the slides on your own.

You should teach for a least 15 minutes, and you can ignore the app warning that you can’t exit the classroom before the 25-minute mark. This is just for real classes. The video will automatically be submitted when you are finished.

Get Your Interview Results

You will receive your results within 2 days.

7. Complete the Quiz

Read over the teacher training manual that Palfish links to you and complete a simple quiz. This quiz will be available for 2 days after you pass the interview, so act fast!

You can repeat the quiz if you are stuck and are not happy with the results the first time

8. Certificate Verification

Palfish verifies your teaching certificate. Get your TESOL teaching certificate for as little as $19, check here for details.

9. Start Receiving Students

Palfish is similar to a social media platform, so let students know you are active. You can share tips, take photos or post something in English. They like to see and read about the teacher’s interesting life! You can also follow students and they can follow you back, and you can send them messages.

Please Note!

TPR (Total Physical Response) is body language applied to online ESL classes. The teacher uses TPR to explain English concepts or instruct the ESL learner. It is necessary to incorporate TPR to help young learners understand the lesson.


  • 25-minute classes
  • 5-minute breaks between classes
  • You can open your schedule whenever you like 8 am-11.30 pm BJT (Beijing Time)
  • Monday – Friday: 6 pm-9 pm peak hours BJT
  • Saturday – Sunday: 9am-10pm BJT
  • You can check your timezone by clicking here

Palfish hours are flexible, so you can easily set your schedule within the app. The classes are 25 minutes long, so you have a 5-minute break between classes. You will more likely be booked during peak hours, which is 6 pm-9 pm during the weekdays and from 9 am-10 pm at the weekend (Beijing Time).

The Filipino Course and the Official Kids Course both require at least 3.5 teaching hours per week.

What are the classes like?

Palfish classes are all live-streamed, meaning no physical class takes place.

For the Free Talk course, you can either do a 1-on-1 class or teach multiple people simultaneously by conducting a live class. This is the teacher’s decision.

The Official Kids Course is 1-on-1 teaching only. The Philippines course is the same as the Official Kids Case, except it is exclusive to Filipinos.

Palfish Versus Vipkid

Palfish VS Vipkid

*Please note, VIPKid is not actively hiring right now but may be worth trying again in the future.*

There are many differences between Palfish and Vipkid, most notably the requirements, salary and device type.

Vipkid requires a more organized set up, whereas Palfish is less formal and requires you to use a mobile-focused device. The casual approach can be fun, and you can still find a way to make it comfortable. You will still need to consider your teaching background for both platforms. You will also likely still be using many props.

The main upside I see to teaching with Palfish is that they don’t require a degree. This means there is a lower barrier to entry, and you may be more likely to get a job at Palfish.

Palfish also provides a more flexible schedule than Vipkid fixed time slots. Vipkid has recently changed its salary structure, and the average pay for a new teacher is $8-$11 per hour, with the opportunity to earn more as you progress by teaching more hours with the company.

Palfish grades your performance from month to month and thus determines your salary. When you download it, you will see that the more points you earn each month, the higher your salary will be for teaching a class the following month. VIPKid has a new tier program that also considers your lifetime number of classes when deciding your bonus structure.

Referral Bonus:

Teachers receive $45 for referring other teachers to the platform. So you can invite your friends and family to sign up and teach, and you’ll get paid for it!


Palfish is definitely worth downloading and checking out for yourself. It’s one of the few apps you can make an actual full-time income from. Don’t be afraid to make friends with your students and send others a message to say a quick hello.

Update your moments to share pictures of the things you do and even create your own lessons.

Teach English Online with Palfish no Degree Required

Online Teacher Toolkit

Be IN The Know

Get the latest jobs, news, and opportunities delivered directly to your inbox by joining my exclusive community. Grab my teacher planner, teacher checklist and tips now. Sign up here.

GEt Certified

Start your teaching journey and get certified now. Watch my YouTube video about how I got started, or read about my experience here: The TEFL Academy review.

START Your First Teaching JOb

New to the world of online teaching or just want to fill some hours in? Curious if this is a career you want to pursue? Check out Cambly to get started. Read the Cambly review.

Highest-Paying Online Teaching Jobs

In my post, I cover a list of some of the highest-paying online teaching jobs. Alternatively, use the curriculum online and find your own students. It’s easier than you think!


Use Wise to accept payments from overseas. Wise has the lowest exchange rates that I am currently using right now. Get Wise.

Caitriona Maria is an education writer and founder of TPR Teaching, crafting inspiring pieces that promote the importance of developing new skills. For 7 years, she has been committed to providing students with the best learning opportunities possible, both domestically and abroad. Dedicated to unlocking students' potential, Caitriona has taught English in several countries and continues to explore new cultures through her travels.

Notify of
Newest Most Voted
Inline Feedbacks
View all comments
2 years ago

Payments for palfish have been slashed by 30% as of today and a host of benefits for teachers have been removed. It is now paying significantly less for the same work.

David Treharne
David Treharne
2 years ago

I am new working at Palfish now as a freetalk Teacher. I was going to apply to become a teacher with their OKC but am now hearing they will only be hiring Chinese teachers , no foreign teachers ?? Can anyone confirm this?

Thank you

Tree Teacher
Dave Treharne

Teacher Guidebook Banner