Nearly one in five Americans aged 65 or older is waiting to retire, the Associated Press reported in October 2018. There are many benefits to continuing to work, such as increasing your Social Security. Moreover, many seniors find their work engaging and simply don’t want to stop working yet.
Still, just because you enjoy working doesn’t mean you need to keep doing the work you have always done. Some “retirees” aren’t actually retired: they’re just starting a new chapter in their careers or establishing new ones. To that end, here are 15 of the best jobs for seniors, including part-time, full-time, and freelance gigs with tons of flexibility.
15 Best Jobs for Seniors
1. Teacher, Tutor, or Instructor
Teaching is a popular second (or any number) career for seniors. To teach K-12, you will need to complete a teacher licensing or certification program. Some states also require a master’s degree. Private schools often have fewer requirements; depending on the school, a bachelor’s degree may suffice.
To teach at the postsecondary level at a college or university, many institutions require you to have a doctorate. However, many adjunct and community college positions only require a master’s degree to teach.
If you’re looking for part-time work in the field, you can usually jump right into tutoring or substitute teaching without having a graduate degree. It’s a wonderful way to make a difference in the lives of children in your community without a significant time commitment.
Working as a personal care or home health aide can be a rewarding career, allowing you to help others. The demand for these professionals is high: according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the field is expected to grow by 41% between 2016 and 2026.
There are also few education requirements; usually, a high school diploma will suffice, although you may need additional certifications as requested or required by your employer.
3. Real Estate Agent
Real estate can be a lucrative field, and depending on which path you pursue, you can find positions that have flexible hours. Note that real estate brokers require a license to work independently, while agents work for brokers.
Are you a people person? Then sales could be your calling. If you’re looking for part-time work, consider a retail job during the holiday season, since this is a time when many retail stores need to increase their staff.
You can also find flexible work as a salesperson in other industries, although, depending on the company, it may require travel. Also, know that there is a significant difference between retail sales and other types of sales workers, although people find satisfaction in a wide range of roles.
5. Brand Ambassador
Social media doesn’t just cater to teenagers and twentysomethings! Did you know that companies often pay people to use and publicize their products on Instagram, Facebook, Twitter, and more? Being a brand ambassador can also come with perks like free or discounted products from the company you represent.
There are plenty of part- and full-time driving jobs, especially with the advent of sharing apps like Uber, Lyft, and others. The pay varies depending on what and where you’re driving (bus drivers generally earn the most, according to the BLS), but the options are plentiful, and it can be a good way to stay active and engage with people in your retirement.
7. Translator or Interpreter
Do you speak multiple languages? Many companies, from airlines to courthouses to hospitals and more, require translators and interpreters to help them communicate with clients, customers, and others.
Keep in mind that you may need to earn an American Translators Association certification to find work.
People who have extensive experience and expertise in a field—as many seniors do—don’t need to work at their companies full-time to keep doing what they love and know the best. Many organizations hire part-time or freelance consultants to assist them with a wide range of work and services. Often, you can charge a higher rate for consulting services than you earned as a full-time employee.
9. Administrative Assistant
This is another job for seniors who love being around people. There are plenty of administrative roles available, including receptionist, bookkeeper, and others. Look into becoming a virtual assistant if you’d prefer to avoid a commute.
10. Park Ranger
Enjoy the outdoors as a park ranger. The National Park Service and state agencies often hire part-time and seasonal workers for warmer months.
11. Craft Worker
Maybe making jewelry, knitwear, or other products was just a hobby in the past, but now it can be a job that earns you money. You can sell your products through online platforms such as Etsy, Bonanza, and Amazon or bring them to craft fairs.
From blogging to writing a book, there are plenty of options for writers of all types. Some of the choices may be higher paying than others—if you land a gig writing for a publication regularly, for instance, this can be a great stream of revenue—but even starting your own blog, which probably won’t earn you money at first, can be a rewarding way to express yourself.
Do you sing or play an instrument? Try looking for gigs playing solo or in a group at events such as weddings, parties, and bar or bat mitzvahs. Many musicians also offer lessons to both children and adults.
14. Childcare Workers
If you love working with children, this is a great option. Consider being a nanny or babysitter for a neighbor or working at a daycare center. Some families and employees may ask you to gain certifications in first aid and CPR, but these courses are often short and inexpensive.
15. Yoga or Fitness Instructor
Teaching classes at a gym, studio, or fitness center—or even in your home—can be a flexible job for seniors who are athletic. Plus, it’s a great way to stay active and healthy. Gyms, studios, and fitness centers often require certain certifications for these types of roles.