23 Great Part-Time Jobs for Retirees Who Aren’t Ready To Call It Quits

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Happy senior man working on his laptop and phone at a remote job.
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Editor’s Note: This story originally appeared on The Penny Hoarder.

Who even knows what “retired” means anymore?

You might have left the career you had in the 40-hour-a-week workforce. But now you don’t exactly want to be glued to your couch watching puppy videos. You want to be active, you want to work and you want to make a little money to support your fun retirement plans.

While “retirement income” or “retirement job” might seem like oxymorons, they are a more reasonable pursuit today than in years past due to advancing life expectancies and improved health among older citizens.

Many people reach so-called retirement age and are in no way done with being productive. Many continue in freelance jobs and part-time gigs, whether in a brick-and-mortar setting, from home, or even outdoors.

There are plenty of ways to bring in some extra money to augment pension, Social Security, or other retirement funds. We’ve rounded up ideas for good jobs for retirees that offer part-time opportunities, flexible hours, or both.

24 Part-Time Jobs for Retirees

Senior worker
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Most of the examples here require your physical presence on-site, but there are remote jobs, too, such as virtual assistant and customer service work that can be done from the comfort of your home.

As you browse these possible jobs for retirees, keep in mind one warning: If you are collecting Social Security, you can only earn a certain amount each month before your benefits are reduced, until you reach the age of 66 years and 4 months. At that point, you can earn whatever you want and still collect all of your Social Security benefits.

So let’s get to work, shall we?

1. Substitute Teacher

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Substitute teachers have never been more valuable than they are today. Although most schools have returned to full-time schedules after a few years of pandemic struggles, people still get COVID-19. When that happens to a teacher, their students need someone to keep them occupied — and that could be you.

Most school districts have lenient requirements for substitute teachers, often requiring just a bachelor’s degree with no teaching experience.

To be successful, you need to be ready to deal with a room full of 20 or so children of varying ages. But it could pay off. School districts in Chicago, for example, pay as much as $200 a day for a full day of work.

If you have an advanced degree, you may also qualify to be an adjunct instructor at a community college or four-year university.

2. School Support Worker

school crossing guard
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Most schools are always looking for crossing guards, recess supervisors, and other positions.

A call to your local elementary, middle or high school could lead you to a good retirement job that would fit your schedule. Even better is searching online for jobs at your school district. This will give you a range of what’s out there.

This is a classic retirement job that gets you out of the house, allows you to have contact with neighbors, and lets you provide security and safety with another set of adult eyes on the children.

3. Survey Taker

Happy retiree on a laptop
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While the buying power of other generations continues to grow, current retirees still hold the majority of the wealth and disposable income in the U.S.

As such, companies want to know what retirees think about all sorts of things, ranging from brands and marketing campaigns to government and politics.

It’s the kind of gig you can do while watching grandkids or taking a breather between errands. And it can pay pretty well once you gain a little experience and learn what to expect.

Typically, survey taking opportunities pay a flat fee for each survey you complete. Some companies may require you to complete a certain number of surveys before you can cash out.

But how do you know you’ll get paid at all? While you have to watch out for scams, there are plenty of legitimate survey sites out there that just want you to weigh in on the news or answer some general questions.

Again, companies really want to know what you think and they’re willing to pay for it.

4. Tutor

An older woman tutors a student
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There are hundreds of tutoring companies in the U.S. that work with kids of all ages to enhance their school education or prepare them for college entrance exams. If you sign up with one, they’ll match you with work and you won’t need to market yourself as a tutor.

The hourly pay for these companies ranges from about $13 to $25.

Requirements often are limited to a bachelor’s degree, although exam-prep work might require a recent ACT or SAT test score, or might require you to retake the exam for verbal or math instruction.

If you are interested in online tutoring, there are many good paying gigs out there. Match your skills to the openings.

5. Bingo Player

Senior man uses his smartphone for banking
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Do you play games on your phone just for fun? You should see if you can make money doing it, too.

A free iPhone app called Bingo Cash lets you play for real cash. Every win could pay you up to $83.

Bingo Cash is based on the classic Bingo format, where you’ll battle it out against other players at your same skill level. Everyone gets the same board and sees the same Bingo balls. The top three players in a game can win real money — anywhere from $1 to $83.

And no, there’s no catch. There are no ads, either. You can play for free or pay to play in higher-stakes tournaments.

Download the free app and start playing your first game immediately. You could win money today!

6. School Bus Driver

senior bus driver
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School bus drivers can earn up to $28.85 per hour with the national average hovering around $20 per hour, according to ZipRecruiter. They have regular hours with the opportunity to earn extra for field trips or outings.

Some states require a specific license (a commercial drivers license, or CDL, for example) or require you to pass a driving test to qualify.

Recent news reports indicate there are many job openings for school bus drivers.

The job is likely to include more than just driving, however. You may be asked to supervise students on the bus, and you may be called upon to discipline rowdy students or those who are making the trip unsafe.

A tolerance for children of all ages is probably an important requirement.

7. Shuttle Bus Driver

Bus driver
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There are dozens of different types of shuttle bus driver jobs. Most hotels have shuttles to and from airports. Senior citizen homes, churches and community centers often offer shuttles to shopping areas or grocery stores.

Hourly pay for shuttle bus drivers can average about $17 per hour, and that’s not including tips from satisfied riders. Like school bus drivers, shuttle bus drivers have regular hours.

Depending on the particulars of the job, a commercial driver’s license might be required.

There are different state laws regarding licensing for shuttle bus drivers. A specialized license might be required if the bus holds a certain number of people or is a particular size.

Your state motor vehicle website will tell you what’s required in your state, and any potential employer will know, too.

8. Tour Conductor

A tour guide leads a group
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Tour guide is one of those jobs that, when you see someone doing it, you think, “Well, I could do that too!”

Businesses, organizations and sites that host tours come in many shapes and sizes, from historical sites to museums, from outdoor walking tours to behind-the-scenes workplace tours. They can be an everyday part of a business or scheduled by appointment. What do they all have in common? A tour leader.

These jobs require knowledge about the subject and the ability to tell a good story — often while walking backward.

Tour guides make an average base salary of about $22 per hour. Plus, they are often offered tips by tour participants.

This could be a dream job for someone who knows the topic well and likes to retell stories about history, natural science or architecture (among many other possibilities).

If this appeals to you, don’t overlook a special area of knowledge you’ve developed during all those years in the workplace. Know a lot about the manufacturing industry? Or maybe you’re just the person to lead tours at a cheese factory.

9. Patient Advocate

Senior patient with doctor
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The job of a patient advocate is to assist someone who is struggling to cope with the health care system.

A patient advocate deals with paperwork and appointments, and communicates with health care providers to get information on diagnosis, treatment and followup procedures.

Advocates might also be asked to work with insurance companies to understand coverage and costs. Many are asked to help a client obtain assistance with financial or legal issues. The range of duties can be as varied as the patient’s needs.

Being a patient advocate does not require any particular educational degree, but it is possible to become certified in this role.

These positions can be part- or full-time, and they pay well, averaging $18 an hour. So if you plan to collect Social Security benefits, make sure to check how your wage impacts your benefits.

10. Child Care Provider

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Child care might be a bit of a political football these days, but rarely has it been more necessary. Single parents or two-parent families that require or want two incomes are likely to need child care, and that could take the form of a nanny or frequent babysitter.

A babysitter sits in a home with a child or children. A nanny is responsible for getting children to daycare or other activities; they are a substitute parent in many cases.

Craigslist, Next Door or other neighborhood job sites are great ways to search for these positions, but your best bet is to work with your personal network. Let people know that you would be willing to work as a nanny or frequent babysitter, and, with the proper recommendation, you could have a very gratifying retirement job.

There are no actual nanny or babysitter licenses or certifications in the United States, but many families require that nannies be bonded, which is a guarantee of service. It is a protection against someone failing to show up for work; one such failure forfeits the bond and that area of work is no longer available to that nanny.

Taking classes in CPR or other emergency response techniques, which offer certifications upon completion, can improve your chances of being hired.

Nannies are likely to make an average of $17.35 an hour nationwide on average. Babysitter earnings vary widely by the affluence of the neighborhood. Check out The Penny Hoarder’s tips on how to get paid up to $21 an hour for babysitting.

11. Virtual Assistant

Older woman working remotely
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Virtual assistants are independent contractors who offer business services virtually.

Those services can include website management, website design, marketing assistance, social media postings, blog writing, email correspondence or any number of clerical duties that can be carried out with a computer and phone. This kind of work is often well-suited to flexible hours.

As of this writing, ZipRecruiter indicated there were more than 174,000 virtual assistant jobs available and suggested that a virtual assistant could make up to $60,000 a year, depending on the work required.

You are more likely to work on an hourly wage determined by your experience and the amount of work you are required to perform. There are also job firms that provide virtual assistants; you can sign on with them and accept work as it is offered to you.

Any task that can be done virtually via computer is likely to be requested by a virtual assistant. Firms would oftentimes rather pay a freelancer rather than an employee to do the work.

12. Bookkeeper

Senior man working on a laptop
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You have a good head for numbers. You are in charge of your own finances, and you perhaps worked in an accounting role at a previous job.

Many small or civic organizations cannot afford, nor do they truly need, a full-time bookkeeper or accounting service. They are not in it for the money. Often, they are charitable or nonprofit organizations. But they need occasional bookkeeping, often with an eye towards tax advantages.

A part-time bookkeeper job often requires simple financial recordkeeping or upkeep of other financial records.

Part-time bookkeepers are usually former accountants or have experience as a bookkeeper. They may be asked to track invoices, but most companies use financial services for paychecks.

The national average hourly rate for a part-time bookkeeper is around $24 per hour. And you don’t necessarily need any accounting experience to get started as a freelance bookkeeper.

13. Umpire and Referee

Umpire baseball
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This is a perfect retirement job if you have a sports background and the ability to withstand criticism.

Competitive sports programs need officials for their games. Baseball, basketball, soccer and football all have leagues for various ages that need officiating.

Depending on where you live, the work can be constant. If you get certified for multiple sports, you can work all weekend long and often during the week.

While high-level programs require officials to get licensed or certified, lower-level and youth group programs require just a basic knowledge of the rules. Look around your community for sports leagues in need of umpires or referees.

Pay is often dependent on the age of the players and the competitive level of the organization, but officials are likely to make at least $25 per game. At higher levels where certification is required, you can earn $200 per game.

14. Pet Sitter and Pet Walker

Senior woman with a dog
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For between $10 and $15 an hour, you can earn money by pet sitting in a home or, if the pet happens to be a dog, you can walk the animal.

Pet sitting is a good job for retirees who want to work outdoors without a lot of physical requirements other than being able to walk while pulling or being pulled.

Pet sitter/walker is also a good line of work to get into because one job can lead to another. Pet owners tend to concentrate around each other, and they will give recommendations to other pet owners about a reliable person who can watch Fido or Fluffy while they are on vacation.

If you are going to house-sit the animal, you will likely get paid more for also keeping an eye on the property while the owner is away.

15. Freelance Writer

Older woman working
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Although freelance writers no longer provide articles — it’s called “content” now — freelance writing is a gig that can offer the freedom to accept the assignments you want.

Some firms will connect freelance writers to people or companies in need of blogs, resumes, cover letters, marketing content and more.

According to Indeed, the average hourly pay for a freelance writer is approximately $25 per hour, but you are often paid by assignment or by word, so the pay varies. If you have knowledge in certain topics like science and medicine, the pay can be higher.

Writing skills rarely diminish, but the requirements for writing change over time. A knowledge of search engine optimization (SEO) is going to open more doors.

Many jobs that use job search websites like Indeed ask for candidates to take a writing test, but many of those are simple grammar or proofreading tests.

While there are occasional situations where someone needs a one-off writing assignment, freelance writer jobs often offer consistent, if sporadic, work. A retiree who can write could have a client for years. Check out this Penny Hoarder article on places hiring freelance writers.

16. Call Center Employee

Older woman works from home on her laptop
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Just to be clear, we are talking about taking calls from customers, not making calls. A call center representative answers incoming calls from customers or potential customers and either answers questions or sends the caller to someone else who can answer.

As much as this is a remote job, it is definitely a people-person retirement job.

You are likely to be talking to someone who is upset or unhappy, and you are the first line of communication for the company you are representing. You need to be capable of being friendly and helpful in the face of unpleasant conversations.

As such, the typical hourly wage for a call center representative hovers around $17.

17. Part-Time Landlord

Senior woman holding house key
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Some retirees like to finally convert their garage or spare room into a workshop so that can lose hours, days even, tinkering and crafting. But if that doesn’t sound like you, consider making some money in hospitality.

Apps like Airbnb and VRBO have made it easy for anyone with extra living space to safely host guests, while earning some serious cash for creating a good experience.

Or maybe you dreamed of living in an RV once you retired, but you realize it sits unused for long stretches. You could rent that out too.

We wrote a story about a safe RV rental marketplace that helps RV owners rent out their rigs to other adventure seekers, without having your insurance company drop you for a commercial exclusion.

Even your storage space can be rented out, using a website called Neighbor or a similar platform. The average host makes about $300 a month, but some people have earned up to $50,000 a year just by letting people park on their property.

18. Freelance Bartender

senior bartender
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Freelance bartending doesn’t require bartending school and can earn you good money working at large events or small, private parties.

Hourly pay for freelance bartenders can be anywhere from $20 to $50 even before tips.

If you can memorize lots of cocktail recipes, if you have an outgoing personality and a steady hand, and if you’re willing to cut people off if needed, this could be a fit for you. Your best bet might be starting out bartending for people you know and then building a network of referrals.

Plan on some up-front costs, such as a portable bar (if the host doesn’t have one) and basic bar tools. The host is expected to supply the alcohol and mixers.

And to protect against possible liability you might want to consider an annual liability policy.

19. Shopping Specialist

Senior shopping for groceries
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Is it the shopping or the buying that you enjoy? If it’s the shopping, then you might consider becoming someone’s personal shopper. The job title describes the job. You are given a shopping list and the means to make the purchase, and you chase after the items.

Certainly, many people already have personal shoppers and don’t know it. When they contact a grocery store and provide an itemized list of goods they want, someone does the “shopping,” and the items are then delivered.

But true personal shoppers are more likely to purchase clothing and accessories than groceries. A personal shopper often finds items and then sends photos and descriptions to the person who hired them to get approval.

Some high-end clothing stores offer personal shopper services as well. These positions might be a little less “personal,” as they might be a one-day relationship. But the concept is the same.

Personal shoppers who go after groceries or staples are likely to make typical hourly pay of about $17 to $23 depending on the company. Those who work for a service are likely on a wage or salary determined by the service rather than by the client.

There’s also money to be made as a mystery shopper. Mystery shoppers are sometimes called evaluators or secret shoppers and often work on their own time. Their job is to document their shopping experiences and report back to the owners to help them improve customer service.

20. Security Guard

Senior security guard
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A security guard who does not carry a weapon serves as a presence to discourage inappropriate behavior.

While many large businesses like Target or Walmart hire security personnel from a service, small employers such as charitable or service organizations are likely to hire someone who is reliable and gives the appearance of authority.

The responsibilities of a security guard depend on the needs of the company being guarded. There may be requirements that go beyond just being a presence, but the differences depend on the needs of the company.

Hourly pay for security guards without weapons training is likely to be between $10 and $17, with a national average of about $20. Night-time security guards are likely to make more than daytime ones.

This is a good job for retirees who do not mind a bit of boredom.

Security guards who do carry weapons require special training and weapons licensing, which is an entirely different job pursuit and perhaps not as well-suited to a retirement job.

21. Seasonal Job Employee

Senior worker in front of forklift
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Remember when you had a summer job as a teenager or a part-time job during your winter break from college? The same logic can work when you’re thinking about some extra retirement income.

Many seasonal jobs are defined by the weather, which is defined by the time of year and the climate where you live. Seasonal jobs are popular, never go out of style (except when the season changes), and can actually be a fun job to look forward to.

Ski resorts in the winter and water parks in the summer are two great examples of places that require seasonal employees. It is not necessary to be a ski instructor or a lifeguard, either. These places require assistance in areas outside of their main purpose: security, transportation, customer service. Even the National Park Service hires seasonal temps.

Also included in seasonal work are holiday positions during the months of October-December. On-site customer service, truck unloading, shelving of new goods, and custodial services are among the positions for which big box stores are likely to need employees. For example in 2021, we tallied more than 500,000 jobs at national retailers and delivery services.

Some stores hold hiring events in October to fill these positions, but they often continue searching for employees throughout the final three months of the year.

22. Baker/Butcher

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Perhaps you grew up baking your own bread, and your cupcakes were legendary at your kids’ school events.

Perhaps you know your way around a rump roast or can identify all the various cuts of meat they offer at your local butcher.

You could turn your lifelong interest in food preparation into a part-time job, and you are likely to be welcomed because you don’t need as much training as a newbie. Your local grocery store would be a good place to start, letting the hiring manager know that you have some background as a butcher or baker.

These are specialty skills, and as such get paid better than some other positions.

According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, a butcher’s hourly wage is approximately $17 an hour. Payscale.com lists the average hourly wage for a baker at just over $13 per hour.

23. Specialty Store Employee

Senior woman and small business owner working on a tablet in her art studio making her hobby a business
pikselstock / Shutterstock.com

You know which hardware store to go to to get advice from someone who has fixed a toilet in their life. You know which fabric store to go to where the employees know the difference between chiffon and silk.

You could be one of those employees.

During your life, you have become knowledgeable about some aspects of household or everyday life. People with your knowledge are hired by companies to help people who do not yet have that experience.

Stores that serve a specific type of customer would love to hire someone they don’t have to train extensively.

According to Payscale.com, the average hourly rate for a hardware store employee is around $13. Indeed says a sales associate at a specialty store will make an average of just over $10 an hour, maybe more now that minimum wages are increasing across the country.

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