Common Saturday and weekend jobs for teens

The basic types of jobs for teens, either the traditional teen jobs or new versions of them, are all pretty similar. They consist of varying hours, and time and pay value are the main considerations. However, though similar, some of these jobs are better than others or may be better for a certain individual based on their situation.

When you're looking for a job, you obviously need to know what it's worth. For teens, that's not always good news. Teen pay scales are generally lousy, and many of the traditional jobs are the worst. Just to add another irritation, some of these jobs offer little in terms of learning skills.

That's a serious negative, because you can do a lot with teen jobs if you're learning valuable skills while you're doing them. It's definitely best to go looking for jobs where you're learning useful information and gaining good experience for jobs down the road.

These are the typical teen jobs, with positives and negatives:

Baby sitting

  • Positives: Comfortable, pays cash, you can get a lot of repeat work
  • Negatives: Pay is minimal, a lot of responsibility, minimal skill training

Paper route

  • Positives: Regular work, regular income, good exercise
  • Negatives: Low on the pay scale, demanding hours, no extra skills taught

Leaflet drops

  • Positives: Can be good money compared to others if you can deliver enough, good exercise, jobs are always available
  • Negatives: Physically demanding, time consuming, minimal skill advancement

Retail (shops)

  • Positives: Regular income, better pay, learn some useful job skills and creates a work history
  • Negatives: Requires getting used to, not for everybody, dealing with customers is an acquired taste

Retail (fast food)

  • Positives: Regular income, learn useful job skills, opportunities for advancement
  • Negatives: Pay starts lower than others, hours can be a problem, not the right work environment for some, can be stressful

Business jobs (administration, clerical, accounts)

  • Positives: Regular income, can learn a lot of very valuable job skills, creates a strong work record useful for future jobs
  • Negatives: Not suitable for some people, can be stressful and very demanding

Picking a job

As you can see, some of the issues here are about growing into and out of some jobs. Others are about your own preferences, and the environments in which you want to work.

Pick a job, if you possibly can, that's best for your future. The problem for teens, though, is that sometimes you just have to take what you can get or whatever's available. You have to roll with the punches, to some extent. People learn to adapt to jobs, and it's usually a good idea to use that as your basic approach, if nothing else than to get some work experience and learn the value of a dollar.