By Alida Moore, PayScale.com
The holidays are upon us, which means peace, joy and perhaps added financial stress if you’re worried about how you’ll pay for your kids’ presents or that trip to grandma’s house. To make your season a little brighter, online salary database PayScale.com created a list of seasonal holiday jobs that pay at least $12 per hour -- about two-thirds higher than the $7.25 federal minimum wage.
“Around the holidays, many people look for ways to bring in additional income,” says Katie Bardaro, lead analyst at PayScale. “While seasonal work might not be in your primary job field, working a few extra hours in one of these jobs could allow you to spoil your friends and family this holiday season.”
To add some funds to your holiday budget this year, consider this list of jobs with higher demand around the holidays. Each job is likely to be flexible, so you can work outside a typical 9-to-5 schedule.
1. Event Planner
Median Hourly Pay: $22.10
Only a highly organized person could keep track of all the ladies dancing and lords a-leaping during the holiday season. If you love to throw a party and are well-connected in the world of event halls, disc jockeys, photographers and caterers, you might find extra work as an event planner. While you juggle the jingle bells and party platters, the guests are free to enjoy each other’s company.
2. Disc Jockey
Median Hourly Pay: $19.80
The wrong music can make your holiday party as dismal as getting a lump of coal in your stocking. The right disc jockey infuses the holiday spirit into each gathering. And with today’s technology, the DJ business is more accessible to everyone. If you have a good laptop and the right software, you could have people rocking around the Christmas tree from now until New Year’s -- while pocketing some extra cash for yourself.
Median Hourly Pay: $15.10
Getting a picture of their bawling child with the department store Santa is a holiday must for many parents. As a photographer around the holidays, you could be the person who helps capture those memories. Whether working with Santa or snapping pictures of partygoers, a good photographer can often find extra work this time of year. Many studios require more help during the holiday season. Contact them early for your best chance at getting the gig.
4. Shipping Clerk
Median Hourly Pay: $13.50
All the presents sent this time of year keep the shipping industry extra busy. And online shopping has made it easier than ever to find the perfect gift for everyone on your list. April Turner of Kent, Washington, worked as a shipping clerk for a large online company during the holidays and enjoyed the flexibility the job offered. “They needed shipping help 24 hours a day,” she says. “We could work the hours that fit our schedules, which allowed me to work weekends to earn extra money.”
5. Technology Retail Salesperson
Median Hourly Pay: $12.30
“Many people view retail as a typical slog behind a cash register to earn minimum wage,” Bardaro says. “However, specialized retail, like in tech products, can offer higher pay and/or large product discounts.” Tech gadgets are among the most popular gifts each holiday season, so shoppers turn to tech-savvy salespeople for assistance in choosing the right products. If you’re current on all the latest trends in electronics, you might enjoy helping shoppers check their gadget-heavy gift lists twice.
Source: All salary data provided by online salary database PayScale.com. Salaries listed are median, hourly salaries for workers with five to eight years of experience. Earnings include any bonuses, commissions or profit sharing.