If you?re looking for a side gig or a seasonal full-time job, you?re in luck ? thanks to the holidays, many retailers and seasonal businesses are in need of extra employees during the fall and winter months.
UPS is planning to hire an additional 100,000 workers for the holiday season in anticipation of a surge in e-commerce sales due to the pandemic, Forbes reported. In addition, FedEx is reportedly looking to hire 70,000 seasonal workers. And many retailers are hiring more employees to work in their online distribution centers.
Although you might not be able to work these positions full time, the salary for one season can be lucrative enough to warrant the time and effort ? and can be especially helpful if you?re one of the millions of Americans who lost their job due to the coronavirus. With all of these gigs, you can easily rack up cash for the most expensive time of the year.
From delivering groceries to decorating homes for Christmas, click through to see popular side hustles that will boost your bank account.
Last updated: Nov. 3, 2020
Seasonal Theme Park Employee
Visitors typically flock to theme parks during the holidays to check out the seasonal decor and characters, so parks usually hire extra workers to help out during this time.
Circumstances are a little different this year with theme park attendance down, but it?s still worth checking if your local theme park is hiring for the season.
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Holiday Retail Sales Associate
Many retailers hire seasonal sales associates to work during busy holiday shopping months. These temporary jobs will require you to assist customers and complete transactions, and you might also be asked to work in other areas of the store such as the stockroom.
Retail Distribution Center Employee
Many retailers are preparing for a holiday shopping season that?s based largely around e-commerce, so they?ll be beefing up their distribution center staff in preparation.
Michaels is hiring 16,000 holiday employees to work in its stores and distribution centers, the company announced in a press release. And 1-800-FLOWERS ? the parent company of Harry & David, PersonalizationMall.com, Cheryl?s Cookies and The Popcorn Factory ? is hiring 10,000 seasonal associates to work in production, gift assembly, customer service and distribution and fulfillment center operations.
Delivery companies like UPS hire driver helpers to assist during the busy time between Thanksgiving and Christmas. This job does not require you to drive a delivery vehicle; these helpers assist drivers with lifting, lowering and carrying packages. This year both UPS and FedEx are hiring thousands of temporary workers.
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Ice Rink Operator
Ice rink operators are responsible for maintaining the rink?s ice surface and equipment, setting up and cleaning up after events, and possibly assisting in the skate shop as well as responding to incidents and injuries that occur. Ice rink operators typically are required to work on nights and weekends ? which could mean some bonus cash ? plus some holidays.
You don?t need to be certified to earn extra bucks as a ski instructor at some resorts. However, these jobs usually do require you to take training sessions and have a certain level of expertise as a skier. Instructors should be prepared to teach students of all ages and abilities, and they should have strong people skills. If you love to ski and want to make money off your hobby, this could be an ideal setup.
Delivering gifts to all the children around the world in a night is a hard job, but mall Santas have it a little easier than the actual Santa of legend. The gig requires you to play a convincing Santa Claus, project enthusiasm and, typically, take photos with children and families. You should also be prepared to answer children?s questions about Santa, so improvisation skills are a plus.
Santa might look a little different in 2020 ? he might wear a mask or even be inside an inflatable snow globe to shield him from the coronavirus ? but many shopping centers will still be hiring for this gig. In addition, you might be able to land a job as a virtual Santa, providing visits through video conferencing.
If you can?t pull off being Santa Claus because you don?t have the look of a jolly old man, you can still partake in the holiday fun as one of Santa?s helpers. These workers hold a position equivalent to an assistant manager, training all the members of Santa?s photo team to work successfully.
This position will also likely be altered by the coronavirus pandemic; in addition to wearing masks, these helpers might not have as much interaction with kids as in past years.
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If you have a passion for holiday decorating, you can get a seasonal job at a florist or other decor company to deck out homes, local businesses and other spaces during November and December. It?s one way to make money by expressing your creativity. For this position, floral design experience is a plus but might not be a requirement.
Christmas Tree Lot Salesperson
Christmas tree lots typically operate from the end of November through the end of December, and they need seasonal employees to work with the customers and handle sales. You?ll learn a lot about side hustles on the job, all while helping to bring Christmas joy to people?s homes.
Gift Wrap Associate
The demand for gift-wrapped packages goes up around the holidays, so many retailers hire seasonal workers to work as gift wrappers during this time. The job involves packaging and shipping customer merchandise. No specific skills are required, but attention to detail is a must.
Property management companies and landscape companies hire seasonal workers who specialize in snow removal to work during the winter months. Duties can entail shoveling or using other snow removal equipment to maintain personal properties and businesses. If you can handle being out in the cold, you can earn good money.
A variety of businesses and organizations hire seasonal telemarketers to take phone orders, set appointments and assist customers. Some of these positions are strictly inbound ? no calling out ? and allow you to work from home. To qualify, you?ll need a pleasant phone manner, a quiet work environment and phone and computer equipment that meet the employer?s requirements.
Completing a training course, which you may take online, can qualify you for a job as a seasonal tax preparer with a company like Jackson Hewitt or H&R Block. Seasonal associates interview clients and prepare returns during tax season, which generally runs from January to April. If you?re comfortable with numbers and need a flexible schedule and decent pay ? average wages start at $21 per hour, according to ZipRecruiter ? this might be the way to go.
Grocery and Restaurant Delivery
Services like Instacart, DoorDash, GrubHub and Uber Eats hire independent contractors to pick up grocery and restaurant orders and deliver them to customers? homes. Drivers typically set their own schedules, working as much or as little as they want. This could be a great way to earn some extra money in your spare time. Grocery delivery orders soar each holiday season and are expected to be especially high this year, due to the coronavirus.
Contact tracers play a vital role in helping their communities contain COVID-19. This job entails contacting people who have been exposed to the coronavirus or have tested positive for it, and providing information and guidance those individuals need to avoid spreading the disease. Empathy, professionalism and excellent communication skills can help you land one of these well-paying positions.
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Daria Uhlig contributed to the reporting for this article.