5 Great paying part time jobs to give you more time for photography

by FOL

Whether your on an aspiring photography career or just a hobbyist, working 9-5 Monday through Friday doesn’t exactly give you much time to spend photographing.  In fact, it doesn’t give you much time to do…much of anything!  On the flip side, a part time job three days a week making between minimum wage to ten dollars an hour won’t exactly pay all the bills or let you get those new lenses you wanted.  There are however, many options out there that give you the flexibility to go on shoots without constantly stretching the wallet.

1.  Valet Parking Attendant

We’ll start with my personal favorite.  I was a valet for about four and half years between three different companies.  The job was so much fun and paid so well, it was hard to continue to think about my career path.  If you spend anytime in the city you’ve probably seen them on every other block, and may have used them before.  Take just a second to think back to when you handed a valet a couple of bucks.  Now think about the small amount of work they did to earn that tip, as well as how long it took them to complete the task.  Combine that with how many vehicles they can take in every hour, and think about the possibilities.  Plus you won’t have to worry about staying in shape!  Valet’s can make anywhere between $12-30 an hour on average.  On many occasions, special events, and depending on the lot, $300 a night was common.

2. Waiting Tables

Probably the most common job on the list, and one of the easiest in my opinion.  The key here is the more upscale restaurants, so you may have to get your foot in the door at an average location.  Once you have even the slightest experience, you’d be surprised where a good attitude will take you.   You’ll make great tips if it’s a popular restaurant and the biggest two problems I ran into were memorizing the menu at first, and the occasional jerk.  But good luck finding to many jobs where that doesn’t occur.

3.  Bartending

Not too far off from the last is one of the best paying jobs on the list.  Bars are everywhere and this industry isn’t going anywhere.  Although slightly harder to get than waiting tables, the same idea applies.  You’ll probably have to start at a less popular bar to get the experience and then you can move to the high paying bars.  A lot of bartenders BANK!  At a popular bar in a good location $250 could be considered a “bad” night.  Special occasions it’s not uncommon to make $700+ a night.  Plus if you move around a lot, it’s extremely easy to get on quick at a different bar.   Bartending might not be as easy as waiting tables or parking cars, but the pay is unmatched.

4. Hotel’s

Ever gone to a hotel and had a guy wearing a funny looking hat take your bags to your room as you checked in?  You tipped him didn’t you?  Well you should have!  Bellmen, room service waiters, and shuttle drivers at hotels make tips.  Depending on size a lot of hotel’s combine these services into one job title so you can make good money at smaller hotel’s doing multiple tasks, or larger hotels doing just one job title, but larger volume.  One thing I found positive with this line of work is that how much I took home largely depended on me.  You can literally walk around and ask for money in the sense of helping guests with luggage, calling taxis, giving guests rides for dinner, shopping, etc.  Hotels are  hustlers playground, and many have turned them into flexible careers.

5. Offshore Oil Rigs

Your probably thinking this one isn’t exactly uniform with the rest of this group.  With the Travel Photographer mainly in mind or any that need more consecutive days in a row for shooting, this could be your ticket.  Literally, it will pay for your ticket!  Although you might put in as many or more hours as a full time job, it’s the time off that qualifies this for the list.  Schedules vary from company to company but usually are one or two weeks on/one or two weeks off.  I’ve seen ads for a month on/a month off.  This could give you enough time for at least one trip per month that you could travel, and with many of these paying you $1000 to 1500 or more a week starting off, you won’t have a problem buying a ticket.

Please feel free to comment and let me know if you can think of any other part time jobs with the main goal of freeing up time without sacrificing financial stability.

-Factory of Light

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