A career in counseling is a rewarding one and there has been an increasing demand for counselors over time. As per the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), the employment growth rate for this occupation between 2010-2022 was predicted to be 19 percent higher than average for all occupations.
Additionally, job opportunities might increase as much as 29% by 2022. Therefore, if you have decided that guiding others is your calling then here’s some great news…guiding people can also earn you decent money!
So, let’s look at the top ten countries where guidance counselors get paid more.
Average Annual Wage: $67,480
Median Annual Salary: $54,000
How does it compare? In terms of annual income, Luxembourg ranks second only behind Canada among its neighboring European Union members with regard to earnings potential. However, on a relative basis considering cost of living, Luxembourg is ranked third. According to a report published by Eurostat, Luxembourg had the lowest inflation rates across Europe during 2012 & 2016.
Job Prospects: There were around 2,200 jobs available which included full-time, part-time as well as self employed workers. These positions include school psychologists, social workers, child care center staff or medical professionals.
Requirements: You must possess either master degree or bachelor’s degree along with relevant work experience.
Average Annual Wages: $66,580
Median Annual Salary: $55,000
How Does It Compare? Ranked second highest in terms of pay, Swiss citizens enjoy good working conditions and reasonable taxes too. A person who works under normal circumstances will need to pay 39.65% tax on his/her salary every month.
On an international scale, this figure comes down to 21%. Moreover, according to World Bank data, the cost of living index in Switzerland is below the global average. So, you won’t find any difficulties while adjusting yourself within the new environment.
If you’re interested in knowing how many hours you’ll need to spend on commuting daily, check out our post about commute times in different cities worldwide.
Job prospects: This field offers various careers like psychotherapists, marriage counselors, life coaches, etc. Apart from these, there are other fields like business management, teaching, public relations, marketing, finance, etc., which require someone having background in psychology.
Requirements: To become eligible for a position as a guidance counselor, you must hold either graduate degree or bachelor’s degree in addition to being licensed.
Average Annual Wages: $64,280
Median Annual Salary: $53,800
How Does It Compare? Another country with low cost of living, Germany is known to offer lucrative package to employees. Besides earning high wages, German employers also provide their employees with quality training programs.
For instance, the average starting salary of a guidance counselor in Germany is EUR 56,380 ($71,400). Employees get monthly bonuses based on performance reviews conducted twice year. Furthermore, they get benefits such as health insurance coverage, pension plan, childcare facilities, flexible work schedule, etc.
Job prospects: Job opportunities depend upon the type of institution you wish to join because education sector requires specific skill sets. Schools, universities, hospitals, prisons, mental institutions, orphanage, welfare agencies, etc., hire guidance counselors.
Requirements: Any professional degree obtained from accredited university would do.
Average Annual Wages: $63,680
Median Annual Salary: $52,000
How Does It Compare? Ranking fourth best in terms of pay, Norwegians enjoy excellent infrastructure, affordable housing costs, and stable economy.
Besides getting competitive base salary, Norwegian government provides them with generous retirement packages. Hence, when compared to most developed nations, the standard of living in Norway remains relatively better than those countries. An employee needs to pay 28.15% tax on his monthly salary.
Job prospects: Opportunities exist in schools, colleges, universities, healthcare organizations, private companies, banks, financial institutes, legal firms, retail stores, grocery shops, etc.
Requirements: Master degree or Bachelor’s degree along with 3 years’ experience in similar field.
Average Annual Wages: $62,560
Median Annual Salary: $51,600
How Does It Compare? Considered as one of the happiest places on earth, Denmark enjoys a very comfortable lifestyle without putting extra burden on their pockets.
They even don’t charge sales tax on goods purchased locally. And what makes things even better is that Danish citizens enjoy free access to national parks, museums, libraries, beaches, entertainment venues, nature reserves, etc.
Despite not charging sales tax, they still manage to keep prices reasonably lower than other Nordic countries. Though ranking fifth, but due to high cost of living, it may take up to three months before receiving your first paycheck.
Job prospects: Career options include teachers, tutors, nurses, doctors, customer service representatives, receptionist, office assistants, etc. Depending upon the specialization, salary starts from $50K to $70K annually.
Requirements: Either bachelor’s degree or equivalent educational qualification along with 1 year of experience in related area.
6. United States
Average Annual Wages: $59,490
Median Annual Salary: $47,500
How Does It Compare? Occupying sixth place on list of highest paying guidance counselors is US residents. Although the median wage for this category doesn’t cross 60k mark, however, the average hourly wage goes beyond 70k.
According to BLS survey, the average hourly salary for guidance counselor was estimated approximately $61.84—a far better amount than the Canadian counterparts. Besides pocket friendly expenses, American employers also provide attractive perks to their employees.
For example, the employer contribution towards federal unemployment benefit, 401(k) contributions, health insurance premiums, life insurance policies, tuition assistance program, company match toward matching bonus, etc., make their working condition quite favorable.
Job Prospects: People working in elementary schools, middle schools, high schools, community colleges, universities, religious groups, military centers, nursing homes, correctional facilities, etc., employ guidance counselors. Some of the leading roles held by guidance counselors include special educators, academic advisors, testing specialists, student services personnel, etc.
Requirements: Having completed undergraduate degree and license issued by state board of certification.
Average Annual Wages: $57,470
Median Annual Salary: $46,250
How Does It Compare? High wages remain the main attraction for individuals looking forward to start a career in counseling.
Mexico tops the chart with respect to highest guidance counselor salaries. But unlike Canada, Americans prefer hiring Mexican nationals rather than their own citizens. Only 4% of unemployed candidates choose to apply for a job in their home country.
Rather, majority opt for jobs offered in foreign locations. Thus, if you’ve got a dream of becoming a counselor yet haven’t started your journey, why wait anymore? Start applying immediately and grab awesome opportunity.
Job prospects: Most prominent industry employing guidance counselors includes K12, college students, churches, corporations, non-profit organizations, etc. Earning an associate degree typically pays $33K whereas a bachelor’s degree could fetch $45K annually. Students pursuing masters in guidance counseling usually receive $48K annually.
Requirements: Must complete minimum 120 credit hours to obtain Associate Degree. Or 180 credits to gain a Bachelor’s degree.
Average Annual Wages: $56,140
Median Annual Salary: €42,700
How Does It Compare? Coming in 8th spot in terms of highest paying guidance counselors is Spanish residents. Like most Latin America countries, the cost of living in Spain isn’t exactly cheap. Employers give hefty salaries but expect a lot in return.
That’s why, unlike other Scandinavian countries, Spaniards prefer relocating abroad rather than staying back in their homeland. When compared to other major economies, the average hourly salary earned is less. Also, the cost of rent, utilities, transportation, food, clothing, furniture, groceries, mortgage payments, and car insurance fees aren’t negligible.
Job prospects: Major industries that rely heavily on guidance counselors include schools, colleges, universities, hospitals, police department, defense forces, immigration authorities, etc.
Requirements: Minimum of 5 years’ experience is required to qualify for a role. Those holding an advanced degree in counseling can easily secure a position of supervisor or manager.
Average Annual Wages: $55,570
Median Annual Salary: AUD$58,590
How Does It Compare? Rounding off the last on top 10 countries for highest paying guidance counselors is Australian residents. Due to comparatively lesser cost of living and relaxed laws regarding alcohol consumption, Australians live a healthy lifestyle.
Besides offering competitive salaries, employers also provide ample opportunities for growth and development. Salaries differ depending upon the region of residence and level of expertise. Generally speaking, entry level guidance counselors earns around AU$35K while experienced ones rake in AU$75K-$100K.
Job prospects: Many local governments hire guidance counselors to assist parents, children, families, patients, inmates, etc.
If you’re interested in working as a school counselor or career counselor then you will find numerous opportunities in government educational institutions or private schools offering counseling services at reasonable rates.
Also some students prefer seeking advice from a guidance counselor during their college years for academic support and career advice.
A job as a guidance counselor involves helping people find ways to improve their lives by providing them with the information and resources they need to make sound decisions about their education and the professions they choose to pursue.
10. The Netherlands
Average Annual Wages: EUR$67,350
How Does It Compare? The Netherlands ranks highly as one of the most expensive countries in the world but the cost of living depends upon where you live.
In general though, Dutch people are more affluent than people residing in other European countries and have relatively high paying jobs.
They also enjoy a high standard of living and are well educated with great earning potential and job security. If you’re looking for a rewarding career as a school counselor or career counselor then you should consider relocating to The Netherlands. You can earn up to EUR$70K per year.