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Blog » Personal Finance » 25 High Paying Summer Jobs for Teens and College Students

25 High Paying Summer Jobs for Teens and College Students

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If you’re a teenager or a college student, it might be tempting to kick back and relax during the summer. Or, maybe it’s the only time you can plan adventures with friends and family. As the legendary Brian Wilson of the Beach Boys perfectly put it, “Summer means happy times and good sunshine. It means going to the beach, going to Disneyland, having fun.”

I believe there is some truth to that sentiment. But landing a summer job can provide valuable life experience. Personally, when I got a summer gig when I was 13, that helped me set a budget in order to reach a goal. In my case, it was saving $500 for a guitar.

However, even just looking for a summer job can help develop interview skills, be a rich experience, and can help learn how to cope with rejection. If you do get a job, you’ll learn new skills and talents. You’ll also be pushed out of your comfort zone. And, you’ll develop self-confidence.

Oh yeah. ‌People are getting paid more because of the labor shortage.

“One of the reasons teens are flocking to the labor market is because this labor shortage has driven up wages at the bottom,” Julia Pollak, chief economist at ZipRecruiter, told Insider. “And it has driven them up particularly in these kinds of industries, these face-to-face industries like leisure and hospitality, where many workers left because of COVID risks.”

All in all, the following summer jobs are ideal for anyone looking for high paying extra income over the summer, regardless of experience level.

1. Golf caddy.

In general, most people who regularly golf are older, affluent, and just looking‌ ‌to‌ ‌have‌ ‌fun. ‌As a teenager, caddying at tournament games or at a private club is an awesome way to make money. ‌When you’re friendly and a good caddy, you can make some pretty ‌‌‌generous ‌tips.

Forbes estimates that golf caddies earn between $100 and $120 per 18 holes. That equates‌ ‌to‌ ‌roughly‌ ‌$20‌ ‌to‌ ‌$30‌ ‌per‌ ‌hour! That’s some serious dough for a summer job.

2. Landscaping.

Lawn care, such as mowing is just one aspect of landscaping. ‌Other ‌services include gardening, planting trees and shrubs, and even lawn aeration. ‌This summer, you may be able to start your own lawn service business if you have experience and access to lawn equipment.

If‌ ‌not,‌ ‌look for a job at a‌ ‌landscaping‌ ‌company. ‌Currently, landscapers usually make $14.67 per hour.

3. Lifeguard.

When it comes to local pools, summer is when they are ‌busiest. ‌Therefore, lifeguard jobs are one of the best and most widely available summer employment options.

Just note that you must first receive your lifeguard certification and complete‌ ‌CPR training. ‌In any case, this may be a great opportunity for teens and college students looking for extra income this summer.

And, according to Indeed, the average salary for a lifeguard is $14.33 per hour in the United States.

4. Referee/umpire.

Teenagers are often hired as referees and umpires in local youth leagues and travel teams. ‌You usually get ‌paid‌ ‌per‌ ‌game. ‌Referees typically make about $17 per‌ ‌hour. Again, this is decent pay — espically if you’re a sports fan.

You may have to take some classes beforehand. Moreover, ‌in recent years, referee shortages have also been caused by overzealous coaches and parents.

5. Farmhand.

Did‌ ‌you‌ ‌know‌ ‌that‌ ‌you‌ ‌can‌ ‌legally‌ ‌work‌ ‌as‌ ‌a‌ ‌farmhand‌ ‌in‌ ‌the‌ ‌United‌ ‌States‌ ‌at the age of 12? In fact, this was my first job when I was 13.

Obviously, hazardous jobs are off limits. ‌For instance, operating heavy machinery or lifting a bunch of weight, or working in dangerous places like silos. ‌But you can still pick, package, and assist‌ ‌with‌ ‌general‌ ‌tasks. ‌On top of that, farmhands earn around $16 per hour on average.

I just have to tell you from personal experience though, this is hard work. But, it can also be extremely rewarding.

6. Server.

Servers generally work in fast food joints, bars, restaurants, and concession stands. ‌Taking customer orders, communicating them to the kitchen, handing prepared food to customers, refilling drinks, and collecting payments are the main responsibilities.

As well as clearing up tables after a customer leaves, servers also prepare‌ ‌the‌ ‌area‌ ‌for‌ ‌new‌ ‌diners. ‌Additionally, they may clean up the restaurant at the end of the day.

In the United States, servers make an average salary of $15.75 per hour. Plus an additional $100.00 in tips per day

7. Cashier.

The main duty of a cashier is to ring up customers’ purchases and finish‌ ‌the‌ ‌check-out‌ ‌process. ‌You may perform price checks, bag items, validate coupons or gift cards, collect cash, or process‌ ‌card‌ ‌payments. ‌If necessary, you may also hand out change.

In the United States, a cashier earns an average of $12.56 an hour.

8. Retail sales associates.

The job of a sales associate is to assist customers who want to make or make purchases in a store. ‌Among the responsibilities are answering customer inquiries and complaints, arranging shelves and racks to maintain an orderly appearance in the store. ‌The assistant also provides product recommendations for shoppers.

Sales associates in the United States typically earn $17.29 per hour. Plus, there’s a possibility to make more through commissions.

9. Baby sitter.

Babysitting can be a great source of income. ‌It could be during the day while parents are at work. Or, just for a few hours while parents are on a date night.

Since this can be inconsistent, ‌advertise on, or locally on Facebook for more gigs. The average pay for babysitters is $11.89 an hour.

10. Tutor.

Tutoring is a good way for students who excel in their studies to earn money. After all, parents want their children to succeed in school, and they will pay that‌ ‌to‌ ‌happen.

Due to the closure of many schools in 2020,parents are turning to tutors to make up for lost learning time. An average tutor makes $18.28 an hour.

11. Camp counselor.

In the United States, there are more than 15,000 overnight and day camps. So it is very likely that there is one near you.

Being a‌ ‌camp‌ ‌counselor‌ ‌is‌ ‌a‌n ideal summer‌ ‌job. Why? ‌The job is available only during the summer months. Also, for those who plan to work with children in the future, this could be an excellent experience.

And, the pay isn’t terrible either. Camp counselors in the United States earn an average hourly wage of $15.09.

12. Petsitter.

Pet owners are concerned about the well-being of their pets and want to know they are in trusted‌ ‌hands. ‌While some owners are happy to leave their pets alone for the whole day, others would prefer to watch over them.

Pet‌ ‌sitters‌ ‌keep pets company while their owners are away at work or at work. They visit and stay in the house for a few hours while the owners are away. Several opportunities exist for gaining experience and working towards establishing a pet-sitting business, which has grown in recent years.

It would be beneficial to have some experience caring for certain animals. ‌But professional pet sitters do not necessarily need to undergo formal training. And, you may able to make between $12-$15.

13. Dog walker.

People who own multiple dogs may need dog walkers several times per day, making this a potentially lucrative business. As with petsitting, you can earn more if you’re trustworthy and have have experience working with animals

Dog‌ ‌walkers usually charge between $10 and $35 per 30-minute walk.

14. Zoo worker.

Do you live near a zooo? If so, this could be an exciting and unique work experience this summer. As a zoo assistant, your daily tasks could range from feeding animals to cleaning up afer them.

Zoo assistants who are just starting out can expect to ‌make ‌$15-$20‌ ‌per‌ ‌hour.

15. Movie theater attendant.

Attendants work concessions, clean the theater, and ‌collect tickets. Depending on the exact job, pay will vary. But, AMC pays between $9 to $17 in New York.

But, here’s the best part with this job. ‌You‌ ‌can watch all the movies you want for free.

16. Theme park attendant.

Working at an amusement park could be one of the most fun summer jobs available. ‌You may work in souvenir shops, food service, cleaning crews, games, or‌ ‌arcades. ‌You may even work‌ ‌on‌ ‌rides.

It pays on average $14.71 an hour to work in a theme park.

17. Trampoline park work.

Over the past few years, trampoline parks have become a preferred entertainment option for families. ‌The industry has grown and innovated since 2006, with an estimated 701 establishments by‌ ‌2021.

Trampoline parks require employees to perform duties such as cashiering, registering, cleaning, sanitizing, and running parties. Pay depends on the specific trampoline park. ‌Employees at Sky Zone Indoor Trampoline Park generally earn $11.90 per hour.

18. Delivery service driver.

Deliveries, as the title implies, are handled by delivery service drivers. This may include fast food or retail orders. ‌As part of the duties, you review orders before and after delivery, accept payments, and provide‌ ‌excellent‌ ‌customer‌ ‌service. ‌However,‌ ‌handling‌ ‌complaints‌ ‌and maintaining‌ ‌delivery documents, like receipts and delivery notes, may also be necessary.

U.S. delivery drivers earn on average $22.12 per hour.

19. Municipal city job.

It’s often necessary to be 18 to work in these jobs. As such, this would defintely be a job better suited for college students — particularly if you’re interested in the social sciences. ‌Summer jobs are abundant, however.

College students often work in city jobs such as:

  • Taking care of the city’s parks and flowerbeds.
  • Clean up/removal of garbage.
  • Leading‌ ‌youth‌ ‌camps.
  • Elections and census work — depending ‌on‌ ‌the‌ ‌year.

The average municipal worker salary in the USA is $16.13 per hour.

20. Gas station attendant.

Gas stations are another business that hires a lot of teens. ‌Today, few gas stations offer full-service options.

Cleaning and cashier work are the main responsibilities. It’s like working in retail. Except, your selling gasoline, coffee, and fountain drinks. But, in states like New Jersey, you’ll actually pump gas.

For gas station attendants, the average hourly rate is $9-$14 with an hourly wage average of‌ ‌$11.

21. Help people move.

Moving companies pay an average of $14.71 for teens who safely handle large objects and work carefully with them. ‌Since many companies have age restrictions, teenagers aged 18 or 19 are best suited for this job.

22. Personal trainer.

Trainers can become certified in high school. But most of them are ‌18‌ ‌or‌ ‌older. Most certifications require the candidates to take a test and pay a fee. And, if you’re an athlete or into physical fitness, this is a great summer job. This was actually something my brother did throughout college.

Also, if you do this every summer, and even on breaks, you make even build up regular clients.

In general, it appears that the average wage is around $20 per hour. But, this will vary depending by state.

23. Online survey taker.

Even though it isn’t a traditional job, students seem to be attracted to the prospect of making money by sharing their opinions online. ‌To be honest, though, the earnings only range from 41 cents to $2.03. On the flipside, ‌they can be done from anywhere with an internet connection, and there’s no barrier to entry.

24. Actor.

For movies, television, stage plays, or advertisements, an actor plays a certain role. ‌An actor reads a script and interprets it to portray a character. ‌It is essential that they memorize their lines and follow the director’s instructions.

If‌ ‌you‌ ‌are interested in acting and have participated in schools or local theater productions, you may wish to pursue paid‌ ‌roles. The average salary for a U.S. actor is $18.11 an hour.

25. Automotive technician.

Automobile technicians repair ‌automotive machinery,‌ ‌mainly ‌cars. Besides that, they also perform diagnostic tests and maintenance. In addition to performing test drives, checking vehicles for safety regulations, and maintaining accurate customer records, this position also involves conducting vehicle inspections.

You may be a good candidate for this position if you have experience working on cars in your spare‌ ‌time. Anf, the pay isn’t bad either. In the United States, automotive technicians earn $27.02 per hour on average.

Frequently Asked Questions

What is the legal age to work?

Children under 18 are protected at work by federal child labor laws. As a result, you might have some difficulties getting a job when you’re young. ‌If you’re under 13, for example, you’re not yet old enough to start working. The possible exception is working on a farm.

If you’re 14 or 15 you can legally work. ‌However, your hours ‌are‌ ‌limited. In a school week, you are allowed to work 18 hours. And, on a school day, you’re not allowed to work more than 3 hours. ‌In the summer and during school holidays, these times are extended

When you’re 16 or 17, there are no restrictions on how long or when‌ ‌you‌ ‌can‌ ‌work. ‌Still, there are restrictions on the nature of your job.

Once you become 18, you’re considered a legal adult. ‌As‌ ‌a result, jobs and working hours are not restricted.

Why should you work this summer?

The answer to this questions depends. But, for many teens and college students, the main reason is earning your own money so that you’re not relying on your parents. You may also choose to save your earnings for your first car or pay for college. And, with the money you’ve world for, you can spend it on experiences with your friends, whether if that’s a concert, festival, or road-trip after graduation.

What are you looking for in a summer job?

In order to get a job, you don’t have to know the answer. ‌It‌ ‌is helpful to know what you are looking for in a position. And, this can also help you eliminate jobs you don’t want to apply for.

Some questions to ask when narrowing down your choices are;

  • How much money do you want to make?
  • How important is it to you to have flexible working hours?
  • Where will you be leaving during the summer?
  • Are there any jobs in a career field you’re interested in?

Where can I find‌ ‌a‌ ‌summer‌ ‌job?

Aside from asking a business if they’re hiring, where else can you find part-time work? You best option would searching listing sites, such ZipRecruiter, LinkedIn, Steady, and Monster. However, because not all businesses use these sites, you might also want to visit their website directly.

You can also connect with recruiters and staffing agenices. Or, you could ask if your scool has summer positions. And, when all else fails, just ask your friends or family.

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Deanna Ritchie is a managing editor at Due. She has a degree in English Literature. She has written 2000+ articles on getting out of debt and mastering your finances. She has edited over 60,000 articles in her life. She has a passion for helping writers inspire others through their words. Deanna has also been an editor at Entrepreneur Magazine and ReadWrite.

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