Whether you’re looking for a second job to beat inflation, retire early, or fund your vacation, here are some of the best part-time jobs to check out.
What should you look for in a part-time job?
There are several things to think about when you look for part-time jobs. Of course, you want to look at jobs that pay well, but you also want a job that will fit into your life.
Scheduling is of course a big concern if you have a full-time job or are enrolled in school. You’ll need to figure out how much flexibility you need and how much of a commitment you’re willing to make.
Some part-time jobs require you to commit to regular shifts and a certain number of hours per week. If you want to work when you want without planning ahead, there are many gig economy apps that let you pick up work when you want with no need to schedule ahead.
Many people also prefer to have a part-time job that’s low-stress since working an extra job means you’ll have less free time to unwind. On the other hand, if your day job is boring, you might want to grab a part-time job that has a little excitement.
Working in the Gig Economy
Gig economy apps like Uber, Lyft, Instacart, and Shipt and their smaller alternatives were designed for people just like you. Their entire business model depends on offering flexible work where gig workers can turn the app on when they want to work and can work as little as they want.
So how do apps that don’t make you schedule shifts make sure they have enough workers? Pay is based on supply and demand. This can work both for and against you.
Apps will often send out notifications with surge pay or special incentives when they need to get more people on the road. If you’re able to work at these times, you can make a lot more per hour.
The flip side is that there’s no guaranteed work. When there’s not enough work to go around, pay can drop and may not even be enough to cover your expenses.
On average, if you learn to work the apps, you can easily make an extra $500 or $1,000 per month. However, if you’re looking for more reliable work, you might want to look at other part-time jobs.
Freelancing is another good way to pick up part-time work. If you have high-demand skills, you can find many high-paying opportunities.
Some people pick up work that’s related to their main job. A corporate accountant might become a small business bookkeeper on the side.
Others look for jobs that give them a change of pace from their main job. For example, teachers looking for side gigs often become freelance writers.
Freelancing can offer flexibility, but your clients do have deadlines to meet. Sometimes you might work by project, while other times you might take on ongoing clients.
Either way, you can usually find clients that are OK with you taking a week or two.
Good Weekend Jobs
If you have a traditional 9-to-5 job, you may be looking for part-time weekend positions. Many good weekend jobs also make for good evening jobs if you know your main job won’t keep you late.
The first places to look are things that you might do on the weekend. This includes bars, restaurants, stores, sports events, entertainment venues, and more.
Even places that are open during the week, like grocery stores, need extra people on the weekends because that’s when they have the most customers. If they have full-time employees, those people will often want to work weekdays and skip weekend shifts.
So while you might think you need open availability to get hired, many employers will happily accommodate people that can only work weekends because that availability meets one of their biggest needs.
If you choose to freelance instead of becoming a part-time employee, you can of course decide to do your work on a weekend. You might not want to email your client until Monday, though, if you don’t want your phone blowing up on the weekends.
The gig economy is also a good weekend job option, but it can be hit or miss. Sometimes, there’s a lot of work because people are home and placing orders. Other times, there’s not enough work to go around because everyone else looking for a weekend job had the same idea.
Good Overnight Jobs
If working overnight better matches your schedule, you have even more options. Remember, most of those weekend jobs have weekday evenings opening, and you can freelance at night.
The gig economy is also usually booming at night with people going to bars or ordering in.
If you’re looking for a regular shift, hotels often need night auditors or desk staff. Typical tasks include handling late check-ins, dealing with any noise complaints, and putting out the free breakfast in the morning.
Security companies also need nighttime workers when the businesses they guard are closed. Most of these jobs only want you to walk around or watch cameras and call the police if anything happens. They don’t want you confronting potential burglars, because they don’t want to get sued if you get hurt.
Warehouses also need a lot of help at night. Some run 24/7 but more senior workers prefer to bid on the day shifts. Others have a nightly rush as delivery trucks come in and out.
Many bakeries, restaurants, and grocery stores also have special night shifts to prepare food for the day and handle overnight orders. They also often have an hourly pay differential as well since it’s harder for them to find help at night.
Good Part-Time Jobs for Students
All of the above options are good potential part-time jobs for students. You can choose the type of job that best matches your current course load and desired income.
You may also be able to fit in work on weekdays. Many students prefer to stack their classes on certain days each week leaving other days open to have a job.
That opens up day shifts at places like restaurants and retail stores. You may also be able to find an internship or entry-level position related to your field of study.
Frequently Asked Questions
How does having a part-time job affect your taxes?
Working part-time just means you have a higher income. While you’ll have to pay taxes on the money you make on the side, having a part-time job doesn’t mean your day job gets taxed at a higher rate.
One thing to watch out for is whether you’re getting hired as an employee or an independent contractor. If you’re an independent contractor, check out the Independent Contractor Tax Guide. If you’re an employee, you’ll get a second W-2 to add to your tax return.
What qualifications do you need to get a part-time job?
Job qualifications of course vary based on the job.
Some part-time jobs that pay well only require a high school diploma or equivalent. Others require a bachelor’s degree, master’s degree, or special certification.
Some companies with minimal requirements offer training. In addition to making it easier for you to get that job, you may be able to use the skills you learn at that company to advance your career.