Part-Time Jobs That Can Get You Serious Discounts

by Mikey Rox on 1 January 2013 10 comments
Photo: Timefortea3

Part-time jobs are great for supplementing income, but there are other things to consider — like, what kind of perks do they offer? If you’ve got to put in a few extra hours a week, you might as well reap the benefits, right? To help you narrow your list, I’ve highlighted several types of part-time jobs and the bonuses associated with them. Take a look. (See also: 9 Ways to Earn Extra Cash When Money Is Tight)

Retail Sales (Clothing)

I took a job at the Gap in high school because it was a fun environment, it gave me the weekend spending cash I needed, and it offered a hefty discount on the inventory since employees were encouraged to wear the brand’s clothes.

I worked at several retail establishments during my high school and college days actually, including Britches, Abercrombie & Fitch, and Hollister. All of these companies provided me with anywhere between 20 and 60% off my new duds. This was perfect for me since I like to buy new clothes, but the discount was even handier around the holidays, so I could save on gifts.

Retail Sales (Non-Clothing)

If you’re not a clothes horse but find yourself buying other items — like electronics, furniture, or appliances — there’s still room for you in the part-time retail workforce. Many companies offer amazing discounts to employees. For instance, Williams-Sonoma, although its items tend to be a bit higher-end to begin with, offers 40% off merchandise, while hardware store Lowe’s provides 10% to its employees. The trick here is to find that part-time job where the steep discount is most in line with what you most need to save money on.

Restaurants

Consider the cost the meal that restaurant employees generally get for free during their shift, and you’re looking at more than $1,000 worth of food savings over the course of a year. Even when you’re off the clock, many restaurants offer an employee discount, so you can treat your friends to lunch on the cheap.

Coffee Shops

Coffee lovers may want to consider a part-time gig as a barista. Coffee shops like Starbucks give its employees free drinks while they’re working — gotta stay alert — and a free pound of coffee to take home each week.

Airline Industry

You don’t have to be a flight attendant to work in the airline industry — there are plenty of jobs that handle pre-flight details. 

Airlines are rather generous to their employees in terms of discounts, with many offering free flights. Southwest, for instance, offers employees unlimited free flights to wherever it flies so long as there’s room on the plane. Airlines also tend to have inside deals with competitors to help you save on travel outside of your employer’s network.

Grocery Stores

We all have to eat, which is why it makes sense to pick up a few hours at your local supermarket if you’re strapped for cash. Most supermarkets offer about 10% off their employees’ grocery bills — savings that really adds up over time. And, yes, you can still use your coupons, too. It also wouldn't hurt to befriend the people in the deli and bakery who might throw a few freebies your way from time to time.

Movie Theaters

Fancy frequent trips to the movies? To save a bundle on new releases, work a couple nights at your local multiplex. Employees are graciously granted access to any flick they want to watch, whenever they want to watch it, so long as the show isn’t sold out. Depending on your appetite for movies, you can save several hundred dollars per year on your entertainment bill.

Day Care Centers

If you’re a parent seeking part-time employment, look into helping out a local day care center several days a week. What better way to bring in extra income and make sure that your child is well taken care of during the day? You may not get the service completely free, but your employer will likely give you a discount on the overall cost.

What other part-time jobs can you think of that offer great discounts? Let me know in the comments below.

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Guest

Hotel chains give awesome discounts as well. Hilton employees (the chain I work for) has $29 and $39 rates for most properties. I saved $250 per room per night a couple of years ago in Savannah GA. I'm paying $39 for a room tomorrow in Indianapolis IN that is listed at $119 and up on most sites. You have to be flexible to get rooms if the destination is a popular place, but with a little planning (you can reserve rooms up to a year in advance), it can save a load of money.

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Ember

Gyms and fitness centers often give a free membership to their employees, how else to convince them to be fit and healthy at the same time. YMCA does this, and if you have kids you can use their child care services as well!

Guest's picture

Working at the movies was definitely worth the free tickets every payday! I also got to see a free concert once while working security.

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Olivia

So true. Our son works at the local already discounted bump and dent grocer. Their line to us, "As long as he eats at your table you get the discount". So for the time being we get the benefits.

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Guest

When I worked for a bank in college, they offered employees a free premium checking account that you normally need $25k or more to open AND maintain. The maintenance fee of $20 a month was waived, and the account included free checks, free check card with miles (had a $20 fee for non-employees), free cashier's checks, free money orders, free travelers checks, Visa gift cards with a waived activation fee, and -gasp!- interest! (although it was 0.05%...). Those little things reallllllly added up--esp since my rent had to be paid via cashier's check! The company also offered extra discounts such as a 20% discount on our AT&T wireless bill. Since I was on a family plan, they let my parents use the code...~savings: $40 a month. When I stopped working there 4 years ago, AT&T let them continue to use the code! Yay!

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Diane

Higher Education Institutions. They tend to offer you a discout on your tuition after a certain time period of employment. Some may only allow this discount is you are full-time. Extra bonus to you if the school/college also extends this discount to your immediate family members (spouse and children) which could save you tons in college education for your kids.

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enness

"I worked at several retail establishments during my high school and college days actually, including Britches"

Britches love discounts.

(Couldn't resist)

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Shelly

At Target you get 10%, and can use your Red Card for 5%, and double up on coupons (manufacturer and store) to make for a good savings.

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Ali

Im a kid but when I grow up I'll work on a movie theater part-time for sure!

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FrugalCat

When I worked at a bakery, the staff got a decent discount (25%) but got to take home day old breads and pastries for free.