9 Great Jobs for Snowbirds

Planning to hit the skies this winter and fly south? That's probably not a bad idea, considering that the trusty Farmer's Almanac says Old Man Winter plans to unleash an exceptionally cold and wet one. But between posting photos of palm trees and swimming pools to Facebook so your friends can curse the day you were born, you may need to pick up some work to pay the tab for such luxury. What kind of seasonal gigs can you get this winter? Take a look and start setting yourself up for success today.

1. Telecommute From Your Existing Job

Not everybody has the good fortune of being able to work from home, but if you work for a company that allows telecommuting, or you're an entrepreneur with mobility, take advantage of it. Earlier this year, I left my home in New York to spend a month dodging the cold in sunny, warm Los Angeles. It was just what I needed to recharge my winter-worn body and soul, and I returned home mid-spring excited and reinvigorated.

2. Pick Up Odd Jobs Around Town

There are plenty of ways to pick up odd jobs around the town you're visiting, especially if you're particularly skilled in a certain discipline. On Craigslist, for instance, you can find a decent amount of handyman jobs and other around-the-house work. In college, I used to help elderly folks around their homes, like weeding and planting in their gardens, and it was quite rewarding. If you're not as good with your hands, however, try picking up gigs as a freelancer. There are more than 70 sites from which to choose, ranging from generic, all-job types to more focused disciplines including: writing, photography, and design.

3. Become a Personal Taxi Service

I started driving for Uber and Lyft a couple months ago — signing into the apps occasionally when I have the extra time — and I've made well over $1,000 already. If you've brought your personal vehicle with you to your winter escape, consider this option. It's been a great way for me to make extra cash, but I also enjoy interacting with my riders and learning a little about their lives during the ride.

Pro tip: Offer candy — I use Starbursts and Dum-Dums — and small bottles of water to your riders for free. Everyone who gets in my car is instantly happier when they see the candy, and as a result, they leave an excellent review and a tip (the latter of which isn't required on these services) more often than not.

4. Offer to Watch People's Pets

Last winter, I signed up for DogVacay (Rover.com is another pet-sitting site that I can recommend) to make extra cash while I was working from home around the holidays or when it was too cold for me to go to my office. I've met so many awesome pets and pet parents using these services, I've put more than $500 in my bank account, and there's not a whole lot to it. All you have to do is make sure the pet is comfortable while their parent is away with lots of love and snuggles in between food and bathroom breaks. If you're snowbirding in a rental, you should check with the owners before you sign up, but for animal lovers, this is a great gig.

5. Apply for Seasonal Retail Work

Every mall in America needs extra hands on deck during the holiday season — and if you're a pro at customer service, pop into stores at which you think you'll enjoy working and inquire about opportunities. Don't limit yourself to the mall though. Lots of local businesses and stand-alone chains need additional help through the holidays and sometimes beyond, and you may be able to land a gig super close to home by broadening your search.

6. Wait Tables at a Local Restaurant

Like retailers, restaurants also often require additional staffing during the holidays to accommodate heavier traffic. You may not get prime hours, or even a spot on the floor if you don't have previous restaurant experience, but there may be a place for you behind the scenes or even as a host.

7. Investigate Substitute Teaching

Have a certified teaching certificate? Visit your local school district to identify opportunities that will put you in a classroom for a daily wage. Since requirements for substitute teachers vary from state-to-state, check out this guide on How to Become a Substitute Teacher.

8. Keep the Peace as a Part-Time Security Guard

Some states that have temperate weather year-round also play host to Major League Baseball training camps, and there are job opportunities at these small stadiums — like manning the concession stand or providing security. As a baseball fan, I couldn't pass up the chance for seasonal work in the southern states. You can also apply to become a security guard for apartment complexes, malls, or other public areas.

9. Look Into Opportunities at a Local Resort

Chances are, there are several resorts wherever you're heading for the winter, and just about the same time you plan to arrive is when they're in need for additional staff. There are lots of different types of jobs available at these resorts, including: front desk, night auditing, maid services, kitchen work, and more. If you happen to be close to an amusement park, you might even have a chance to walk around greeting guests at a costumed character, making you the hero of all your friends' children and grandchildren back home.

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9 Great Jobs for Snowbirds

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