Eleven Summer Job Ideas for Teens

Summer Job Ideas Teens

Published by Dr. Charles Gemmi

A Board Certified Orthodontist and a Diplomate of the American Board of Orthodontics, Dr. Charles Gemmi has been a practicing orthodontist with Orthodontics Limited since 2000 and is a member of the teaching staff at Einstein Medical Center. Orthodontics Limited is a Diamond+ Provider of Invisalign in Philadelphia and Hatboro, PA.

A summer job is a rite of passage for most teenagers. Whether they are looking for spending money for clothes and hanging out with their friends or saving up for a car or college tuition, the summer is the perfect time to earn money and hone new skills without having the extra stress of school work.

There are a lot of full-time and part-time options out there if you know where to look and with the right job, your teen can earn a couple thousand dollars (before taxes) during one summer. Here are some summer job ideas for teens:

Babysitting or house sitting

One of the first jobs most teens get is babysitting or housesitting for a neighbor or family member. If your teen is good at taking care of younger children then see if anyone in the neighbor could use a sitter while they are at work or for a date night with their spouse. If it becomes a regular gig, it could be a source of a consistent income for your teen. For the safety of your teen and the children they are watching though, make sure he or she gets CPR certified and takes a safe sitter course before starting.

For younger teens or those with less experience being a mother’s helper or housesitting are other good options. As a mother’s helper, a teen can watch or play with the kids while the parent is home. Even this can be a big relief allowing the parent to get other things done around the house. If a neighbor is going away on vacation this summer, your teen could also volunteer to check on the home and take care of any pets or plants while they are away. If you have a responsible older teen, they might even be asked to stay in the house while they are on vacation.

A dog walker

If your teen is an animal lover, then becoming a dog walker might be a lucrative and fun way to earn money during the summer. Have them ask around the neighborhood to see if there are working parents with dogs who could use some help while they are at work. Your teen must be comfortable around dogs though and not be grossed out by picking up their poop.

Creative entrepreneur

If your teen is really creative and is good at working with his or her hands, there are plenty of opportunities to turn their talents into a good source of income. Loves to design and make clothes? Your teen can design and sell t-shirts or offer their services as a seamstress or tailor. Loves to do arts and crafts? Your teen can make dolls for younger kids or sell their paintings, woodwork or ceramic work at flea markets.  If your teen is a good photographer, there are always people looking for photographers for family photos, headshots or event photography. Your teen will not only develop their artistic skills, but also learn what it takes to run their own business.

Tutor or writer

Teens that prefer academics and are strong writers can also put their skills to use in the summer with tutoring and writing jobs. Summer is a popular time for parents looking for tutoring help for their children so your teen can put their math and English skills to use helping younger kids prepare for the school year. If your teen loves to write, then they should consider freelancing for the local newspaper or to consider blogging or doing content marketing for the web. Make sure you help them find good sources for this though as there are scams out there that they should avoid.

House cleaner

While your teen probably prefers to avoid housework at home, it might be more appetizing to do it for others, for a fee of course. Your teen might be able to earn some good money offering house cleaning services to harried parents and older couples.

Pool cleaner

Whether they join a pool cleaning business or start their own, pooling cleaning is a great summer gig. Your teen will be able to soak in the summer sun while earning some cash and if they do the job right they won’t have to worry about a boss hovering over them all the time.

Restaurant work

Restaurants are always looking for teenagers to work for them during the summer and there are plenty of positions to fill from host/hostess to waiter to cook, your teen can pick the position that suits their personality and skills the best. An added bonus is that they usually can sample the food for free while they are there.

Lawn Maintenance/Landscaping

Another popular summer job for teens is lawn maintenance and landscaping. They can join a local company or start their own mini business. Your teen will love any job that allows them to work outside and to work independently and set their own hours.


With the right certification, your teen can also get a job as a lifeguard at the local pool or swim club. What is great about this job is that they can usually take advantage of the club’s amenities during their off hours.

Camp Counselor

If your teen loves working with kids and had many of their own positive camp experiences then they will love becoming a camp counselor. This can be especially rewarding work and looks great on a college application too.

Retail Work

Teens who spend most of their time and money shopping will love retail work. Recommend that they find a job at their favorite store so they can take advantage of the employee discount there.

This is just a list of some of the summer job opportunities out there. Help them find the job that suits their skills and personality best. Some jobs are more word-of-mouth while others require your teen to put up flyers and scour the local want ads. Encourage your teen to put the effort into getting a summer job. It is good for them to learn early that they can’t expect things to be just handed to them.

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