High paying seasonal jobs in hospitality
If you’re in hospitality, the holidays are a great time to earn a little extra money, but season jobs can also be fun opportunities to try something new, set your own schedule, or even launch your own hospitality business. Here are a few suggestions to get you started.
Want to be Santa for the holidays? Private parties will pay on average $100-$150 per event for a real-life Santa to hand out gifts and bring some holiday merriment to their gathering. Al Lee, Ph.D., at Payscale’s Dr. Salary website, says a beginning Santa can earn $100/hour while an experienced Santa can average $175-$200/hour for the first hour and $100-$300 for every hour after that. You basically need to have a pleasant and calm manner, have a real beard and belly and be available to work throughout the Christmas season. With those kinds of wages, you can easily rack up $8,000-$10,000 and have a very merry season yourself!
Private Party Chef
Whether it’s the holiday season or any other special event throughout the year for that matter, private chefs can make $35/hour and more depending on the venue, location and event. For seated dinner parties, $50-$120/hour is not uncommon, with a $450 minimum. It requires experience and a lot of prep, but when you’re doing enough parties at the right rates, it can really add up.
Holiday displays are getting more lavish and extravagant every year. Businesses, as well as private homes, are looking for professional holiday decorators to deck their halls. This seasonal job can even become a full-time, year-round gig: incorporating animated characters, special effects, extensive lighting, and unique themes can keep you busy most the year. With planning, decorating and getting paid to take it all down, it can be quite lucrative.
According to Lou Nasti, of Mechanical Displays in Brooklyn, some buildings in NYC will spend $35,000-$40,000 on their lobby décor, and he’s worked on private home displays that cost $30,000 a year. Macy’s in Herald Square, as well as other high profile retailers (like Union Square in San Francisco), consider their holiday displays a special event that draws crowds to their windows throughout the holiday season. As Nasti says, “people want something exciting in their location: windows, a wonderland walk-through, a talking reindeer over a bar, or just to decorate the place to make it look magical.”
Handling all aspects of holiday parties, event planners can earn $17-$21/hour (that’s $43,000-$46,000/year). You need to be very organized, a good communicator and most importantly, creative. If you have those skills, you can market yourself over social media and make some extra money by taking over the planning and execution of all the details during a very busy time of year for most people and businesses.
For those of you with adventure on your mind, consider being an adventure guide. Wake up to gorgeous scenery, bike through historic locales, and enjoy helping your guests have an eye-opening experience of a lifetime. And, the great advantage for these seasonal jobs is that they’re available throughout the year, depending on your location and the climate.
Work your way around the world leading luxury vacations for small groups with biking, camping, sailing or fishing on the agenda. Organize and lead these fun vacations and get paid to do the things most people just dream about. You travel for free and the tips you make can be a significant boost to your bottom line.
Some fishing lodges have very flexible hours with great pay. There are opportunities to raft, fly fish in swift, clear rivers or provide ocean-going excursions for the big catch. It’s a chance to earn extra money during the season while experiencing a wider view of the world and the beauty of nature.
Are you a great skier? Lead a helicopter tour for a small group of powder hounds. Teach a ski school. Snowshoeing and cross-country guides are also in demand at resorts that cater to winter sports.
So no matter what your skill set, there are plenty of ways to make some extra income during various holiday seasons throughout the year. The hospitality industry is all about making guests comfortable and giving them a unique experience… who says you can’t have some fun and earn extra cash while you’re doing it?