To be clear, this is not cruise-ship work (which is terrible). Sign on to assist a private charter boat and you’ll polish chrome, sling drinks, and clean cabins, all while seeing the world (or at least Bermuda) from an extremely posh vantage.
The Good: you’re on the open ocean, the pay’s great, and you’ll never complain about hard work again. The Bad: it’s nearly around-the-clock, demanding physical labor—hauling traps out of the water, removing the lobsters, cutting up bait fish with huge knives on rolling waves.
Hauling tourists around the historic quarters of a scenic city on a clunky tricycle may not sound (or look) too glamorous. But you make your own hours, you exercise on the job, and there’s no better way to get to know a new town.
Cooking or waiting tables in a national park is a rite of passage for college kids out west, some of whom cycle among parks until their mid-twenties. The views are amazing, and there’s a jubilant camaraderie that comes from working in some of the country’s most beautiful places.
Think of this as the minor leagues for aspiring hotshots and smoke jumpers. On-call firefighters, many of whom are college students, learn the ropes by working 14-to-21-day stints as mop-up crews at forest-fire sites, dousing flames and clearing out felled brush.
Your office is the beach, your uniform a pair of boardshorts, and you could rescue dozens of people. According to 30-year veteran Southern California lifeguard Lance Dempsey, “On a busy week-end, there might be 2,000 people in front of your tower.”