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I recently posted a list of the worst jobs. I’ve also written about how to avoid permanent and/or full-time employment, and things to try before you quit a job you hate, and, when those ideas don’t work, how to quit your job.
As you may have guessed, I have a slight bias against jobs. But not all jobs are created equal (as in equally bad). Of the dozens I’ve had over the years, I certainly hated some less than others. I even liked several of them… well, at least for a few weeks.
So what makes a job a good one? That has to be answered based on personal criteria. A good paycheck is important to many readers, while others may like fun and exciting work.
Maybe you want to work outdoors, or for a company that offers unlimited paid vacation time (in the latter case, see the list just below).
So here are some jobs you might like, arranged so you can choose according to the criteria that matter to you, starting with…
Jobs With Unlimited Paid Vacation Time
Would you like a job with unlimited paid vacation time? Believe it or not, some companies offer this benefit. The employers don’t care how many days you take off, as long as you get your work done.
The idea is that time off helps you with focus and productivity. For example, in a report on ten companies with unlimited vacation time, Forbes notes that Apsis Labs, a software development firm in Seattle, requires employees to take at least three weeks of vacation time each year.
Glassdoor says the following companies offer unlimited paid vacation time for many positions. Some of the most recent hiring locations are noted as well:
- Glassdoor – Mill Valley, CA; San Francisco, CA; Chicago, IL; London, England; Dublin, Ireland
- Groupon – Chicago, IL; Palo Alto, CA; Madrid, Spain; London, England; Dublin, Ireland
- OpenX – Pasadena, CA; London, England; Menlo Park, CA; Krakow, Poland
- Workday – Pleasanton, CA; Singapore; Montreal, Canada; Hong Kong; Chicago, IL
- Riot Games – Los Angeles, CA; Santa Monica, CA; Mexico City; Sao Paulo, Brazil; Dublin, Ireland; Jakarta, Indonesia
- General Electric – Cincinnati, OH; Washington, DC; Norwalk, CT; Niskayuna, NY; Menlo Park, CA
- SoFi – Helena, MT; Cottonwood Heights, UT; Healdsburg, CA; San Francisco, CA
Some of the companies listed have more than 500 openings asi write this. The hiring locations vary from various countries to cities across the U.S.
High-Paying Jobs That Don’t Require a Degree
My post on how to be successful without a college degree covered starting a business and investing in real estate, but it also listed a few decent jobs. Here are some of your options:
- Get a job through the Department of Labor Apprenticeship Program. Pay starts at around $15 per hour, but averages $60,000 annually once you’ve completed your apprenticeship.
- Do dirty and dangerous jobs, like crab fishing for three months for $50,000. Other tough jobs that can pay well include oil field worker, crime scene cleaner, and firefighter.
- Join the military to train and prepare for good jobs in the future. A CNN report on high-paying jobs for military veterans lists many six-figure positions.
- Choose a position from our list of best jobs for earning tips, and then apply the lessons from my post on how to increase your tip income.
I like a job that “expires.” It saves me the inevitable hassle (and resume black mark) of quitting. Fortunately, there are quite a few jobs that have a “season,” and come to a natural end.
For example, a dozen years ago I worked the pre-Christmas season at the post office. My mail-sorting position paid about $13 per hour, and ran from September through December the two times I did this work. The post office website has information on how to apply.
Here are some other seasonal jobs you might like:
- Resort Jobs (summer or winter seasons)
- Summer Camp Jobs (June through August)
- Tax Preparation Jobs (typically January through April)
- Festival Jobs (very short-term)
- Holiday Retail Positions (typically October through December)
Jobs With Great Retirement Plans
If a good retirement is your goal, some jobs are clearly better than others. Investopedia says these are the five companies with the best retirement plans:
- The Boeing Company
- Philip Morris International Inc.
- Citigroup Inc.
Most companies have moved away from defined benefit plans in favor of 401k plans that you fund from your wages. What you want then, is companies that match your contribution, and then you want to contribute as much as they will match.
Citigroup, for example, matches 100% of the first 6% of your wages that you put into your 401k, so you want to contribute at least 6% of each paycheck.
Jobs With the Best Benefits
Retirement plans and vacation time are great, but what about other benefits?
For example, Salary.com says that at Google “Employees also enjoy oil changes and car washes, massages and yoga, a playroom, back-up child care assistance, and $12,000 annually in tuition reimbursement.”
Here are few of the other “best benefits” companies Salary.com lists, with notes on some of the things they offer:
- Yahoo! – On-site gym, barbecues, concerts.
- Scripps Health – Tuition reimbursement, concierge services, onsite massages, pet insurance.
- Ernst & Young – Concierge services, parental leave benefits.
- AOL – Eight weeks paid maternity leave, on-site day care facility.
- Deloitte – Up to six months of partially-paid leave for volunteer or career-enhancing pursuits.
- Dealer.com – Veggie delivery to your desk, full gym with personal trainers, no-tie policy.
- Grasshopper Group – $5 daily lunch allowance, free snacks, and coffee, a Nintendo Wii room.
Jobs That Let You Travel
If you love to travel, there are two types of jobs you might like. The first is jobs that you can do from anywhere, meaning you can travel and keep working. A list on TheBalance.com includes the following positions of this type:
- Email Marketer
- Promotional Video Maker
- Freelance Writer
- Web or Graphic Designer
- Android or iPhone Developer
- E-Book Publisher
Of course, those positions are online, and several of them are not employment, but freelance work. That brings us to our second type of job that lets you travel, which is positions that usually require travel as part of the work. Here are some examples:
- Wildlife Photographer
- Airline Attendant
Part-Time Only Jobs
I don’t do full-time, so one of the many jobs I’ve had was inserting ads into Sunday newspapers for $100. It took from five to eight hours every Saturday night — a weekly work schedule that was just fine by me.
If one of your criterion for a good job is “part-time,” here are some of the best, according to USNews.com:
- Nail Technician
- Taxi Driver
- Physical Trainer
- Massage Therapist
- Real Estate Agent
Jobs With Fun and/or Exciting Work
I had to occasionally chase an alligator off the boardwalk when I worked as a security officer at a resort community in Florida, and a bobcat walked by once, but most of my time at any of my many jobs has been less than exciting, to say the least.
Still, there are some fun and exciting jobs to be found out there, including the following, pulled from a list on Thrilllist.com:
- Private Island Caretaker – $15,000 to $45,000 annually.
- Water Slide Tester – About $31,000 annually.
- Weed & Sex Journalist – $32,000 to $76,000 annually.
- Jack Daniels Taster – $20,000 to $60,000 annually.
- Netflix Tagger – “A couple hundred dollars a week.”
- Google Trike/Street View Team Member – About $30,000 annually.
- Luxury Bed Tester – About $1,500 per month.
- Video Game Tester – $36,000 to $62,000 annually.
Jobs You Can Do From Home
Most of the jobs you can do from home are actually independent contractor positions, which means you don’t get benefits and you have to do a Schedule C at tax time. Still, I can tell you that, whether I’m working for an employer or a client, I like working at home, and you might too.
Here some possible positions:
- Search Engine Evaluator – Examples: Leapforce and Appen.
- Online English Tutor – Example: VIPKKID.
- Transcriptionist – Example: TranscribeMe.com.
- Customer Service Representative – Many companies that hire home-based workers offer real jobs (not freelance contract work) with benefits.
Before you jump on these opportunities, be sure to read my post on the pros and cons of working at home.
Other Great Jobs
Here are a few more categories of employment that I’ve previously covered:
- 25 Best Jobs for Introverts
- 15 Outdoor Jobs and Businesses
- 22 of the Best Second Jobs
- Driving Jobs
- 20 Jobs for Night Owls
Ready to apply for that great new job? See my post: 6 Job Application Problems and How to Fix Them.
Don’t see a job you like here? Perhaps the examples given will at least get you thinking about your personal criteria.
For example, you might decide you need a job that’s walking distance from home, or one in a town where you’ve always wanted to live, or one where your spouse works, so you can spend more time together.
If this list has you reconsidering your current job, check out the following posts:
Finally, if, like me, you have a problem with all jobs, take a look at my Nonconformist Guide to Personal Finance.
If you have a great job, or you’ve had one in the past, please share your experience below … and keep on frugaling!