You can find a range of summer jobs that offer you the chance to earn money and skills and still find time to enjoy the sun. All you need to know is where and how to look.
How to find a job
There are loads of different ways to go about finding a summer job. The internet has a range of websites dedicated to finding students summer work; here is a list of the main ones:
- Employment 4 Students
- Just Jobs 4 Students
- Summer Jobs 4 Students
- Student Jobs
- Leisure Jobs
Alternatively, have a look in newspapers which have job sections, or your college or University career services. For those who are interested in working in retail, one of the best ways to find this type of summer job is by applying in person. Take some time to wander around your town/city or nearby towns that travel to/from is easy and cheap. Lots of places simply have ads in windows rather than advertising in newspapers. Don't forget to ask your parents too, they may know of a suitable position, or at least be able to pick up some other local papers for you to look at. And not just your parents; mention it to anyone else who could put in a good word for you. Networking isn't just for full-time employment and you never know who might be able to help you out. Ask friends who have summer jobs if there are any other jobs available at their place of work. Getting your name out there will help in any search.
CV or not?
Whether you're applying via post or email you will need to submit a CV. If you are applying in person, take a CV if you have one. If not, be prepared to complete an application. For help on how to write your CV, why not read up on how to write the best CV you can or get help from our CV helpers.
- Start deciding what you want to do NOW. Employers anticipate summer - bigger sales,more people,a chance to make money; so they're going to start recruiting early, as early as April. Depending on the job, you can expect to see job application deadlines as early as February or some in the middle of May so you need to know what you want.
- Start applying. It's never too early to make applications. Brush up your CV, update it and start sending it out to employers.The earlier you apply the more consideration can be given to your CV, the more organised you'll look and the more likely you're going to be to get a job.
- Research the companies and roles you are applying for. Not only will you then know exactly what's expected of you in the role you're applying for, but you will also put yourself at an advantage if there's an interview stage later on. Click here for advice on everything interview related.
- Look at the different areas of work that are available, particularly over summer. Decide which areas interest you and focus your time on these when searching for a summer job. Be aware that supermarkets and other large local employers take on a high number of student summer staff, so you'll have to get in early. Think about the more seasonal opportunities, such as working at kids or teens' summer schemes.
Common summer jobs for students
This I feel should be the top rated activity/job for the summer. Not only is it fun - you get to work indoors and outdoors, you get to play with kids, you get to make new friends and best of all you're getting paid for having a laugh! What else could you ask for? There are both day camps and residential summer schools/camps to choose from and why should you need to go abroad to do this when nearly every school in your area is probably organising one every year. It might seem like fun but it can be hard work but really you don't think of it as such since you're having so much fun. It's great experience and it looks good on your CV. The best part is, you're almost guaranteed a spot the following year if they felt you were good and some camps occur every holiday i.e. easter, xmas etc. Applications appear from the beginning of December and can stretch to February or May depending on the company. It always helps to search university career sites or the company site to be sure. A few links to some well known summer school organisers in the UK...
Who doesn't love their festivals?! Wouldn't it be the best job if you worked at one? Imagine free music, you get to see the celebrities, enjoy the music, have fun, get paid etc etc. If this sounds like your kind of thing, why don't you check it out? Look online on the popular student recruitment site Just Jobs 4 Students as they advertise for festival workers. Another idea would be to apply to event staff agencies that send their staff for festival jobs. A few sites to help your search...
- Festaff - Supply Volunteers at Major UK Festivals, Glasto, Download, TiTP, Bestival, V Fest and many more! apply on their website and get into festivals for Free!!
- Stuckforstaff - Promotions work for experienced promoters. You pay £15 for a 6 month subscription.
- Eventstaffing - Promotions works especially for festivals etc.
It might not be your cup of tea but some people like the security and stability of an office job. If this is for you, the best bet for the summer would be a temporary office job (there's always the possibility of it being a permanent one if you like it enough, do your job well and the company want to keep you). The easiest and best way to get office work in the summer is to go through an agency. You could apply now or you can apply later, but obviously the more time and agency has to know you, send you off on different assignments and get feedback, the more likely you're going to get a better job than say if they don't know you. That doesn't mean you can't find jobs by yourself by looking online or through your local newspaper, but it just takes the stress out as the agency do it all for you and find a job that best suites your needs and wants. Instead of typing up a whole list, I'll post a link to a compilation I've already made here on TSR that's easy on the eyes. Remember pester the agencies so they know you exist!
Jobs Abroad - Holiday Reps/Bar work
Why do the same boring job when you can do it abroad, have fun and get a tan at the same time An increasingly popular job for students especially is either bar work or holiday repping work abroad. Apart from adding another stamp to your passport, you get to embrace a new country (helps if you speak the lingo, but most tourists will speak English anyways), have fun and see all the good sites. Holiday repping can be hard work but you do make friends for life and have fun at the same time, and if this is the kind of thing you enjoy, go for it! You'll normally find adverts for this kind of job on the Just Jobs 4 Students or Hot Recruit websites. A simple google search or a look on your university's careers website might help as well. Just be wary of any scams e.g. asking for your money etc.
Manual Work at Home or Abroad
Some people might want to do some manual labour if they live in the countryside or just for the sake of doing it. If you know you're not built for this kind of work, don't do it. If you want to do it, ask around locally, check online, in newspapers on university career websites etc. I remember last year seeing an advert for strawberry picking in France, you get to travel, camp, earn money and pick strawberries! That would have been fun. There's no limit to what you can do.
Retail & Leisure Jobs
Most people go down this route, retail work does seem alluring and simple but it can be quite hard, and sometimes not worth the money. The best advice for retail jobs would be to apply early. You should start seeing adverts for your favourite stores from late April/early May time, some shops recruit earlier so they can train staff. As soon as you see signs (and keep your eyes open for them!),start applying! The earlier you get your CV in and pester them, the more of a chance you have. Always hand in your CV to the manager directly and look good/confident as first impressions count. Get the store telephone number and ring them every few days to see if they're having any interviews or going to offer you one or looked through your CV. Eventually they'll look at it just to get you to stop bothering them. Remember apply to as many shops as you can, 5 applications isn't enough,10 isn't good either! We live in a consumerist (does that exist?!) world, so there are loads of stores!
Leisure jobs are nice jobs to have. You can either work full time in whatever company you want or you can be flexible. These sort of jobs can pay well so basically just ask around locally and it should be easy to go from there.
This would mainly be for university students who are looking for experience in their chosen field or course. First, internships are HARD to obtain and COMPETITIVE. You have to apply as soon as you discover the opening because there are loads of students and non-students looking for that edge and an internship is the best way forward for them. Most internships tend to be unpaid but they are invaluable. So make sure you apply as soon as you can (most application deadline are around March but this is obviously dependent on the company). A good resource for finding internships are university careers websites, the company's website and course/field related websites.
These include supermarkets, hospitality etc. These don't normally have deadlines and will always be looking for summer workers. It might not be the best of jobs or what you're looking for but it brings home the cash cow and at the end of the day, that's what you really want. Again this compilation list will give an idea of websites you can use to search for jobs.
Be your own Boss
If none of these areas sound interesting to you, don't worry. You can think self-employment. If being your own boss appeals to you, consider lawn mowing/landscaping, house painting, car washing, pet / house sitting, childcare, catering, or anything else you can think of. There may be space in your community for someone willing to put themselves out a bit to make a fairly decent amount of money.
- Contact the Employer
- Job Searching Tips
- Getting a Job at 16
- Making the most of your summer
- School and College Student Job Experiences
- A Jobhunter view of temping