Your parents said you’d never get anywhere by drinking your way through college, but little did they know you were training for your future career all along. Here, entry level jobs where you can get paid to drink right after graduation.
Barback (minimum wage + tips)
If you dream of one day becoming a celebrated bartender, you’ll have to clean and restock your way to the top. Working as a barback isn’t all keg lifts and dirty glasses, though. Depending on the bar, you’ll also get some lessons in bartending by watching, listening and practicing for your big break behind the stick.
Beer Cart Attendant (minimum wage + tips)
If you were planning to spend your summer on the fairway anyway, you might as well spend your time driving around in a golf cart stocked with cases of beer and snacks. Granted, you have to sell most of those goodies to actual golfers on the course, and you should probably wait until you’re parked (and off the clock) to crack a cold one.
Tasting Room Assistant ($15 per hour)
When you’re pouring out tastes for guests to sample a distillery’s boozy wares, there’s plenty of opportunity to join in the fun. No one wants to drink alone, so you can always accompany a solo taster, while every group toast could use the clink of one more tasting cup. Plus, in order to sell someone on a spirit, you should know what you’re talking about.
Bar Crawl Leader ($40-75 per tour + tips)
Plenty of college grads spend a year or two stumbling around a foreign city before finding a real job, but savvy traveling imbibers can just keep doing that and call it a job. Lead your fellow vagrants around from drinking destination to drinking destination as a bar crawl leader, or set up shop in your hometown providing visitors with tours of local hangs.
Vineyard Worker ($12-15 per hour)
After spending years cooped up in dorm rooms and study halls, it’s time to embrace the sunshine with some good ol’ outdoor hard labor. If you have the physical strength to set up trellises, prune vines and pick grapes, you can make an honest living working in a vineyard. While you won’t immediately be able to enjoy the fruits of your labor, you can sip on some post-shift tastes of past vintages. Bonus: You might get to drive a tractor.
Craft Beer Scholar ($64,000 annually)
Attention, history majors. Put your education to good use by teaching the drinking world about something they actually want to learn: the history of craft beer in America. The Brewers Association funded this three-year appointment at the Smithsonian, letting one lucky scholar dig through the archives to investigate our nation’s boozy past. While the sole position has been filled, we can definitely see this expanding into a larger field.
Assistant Brewer / Cellar Worker / Spirits Production Assistant ($21,000-25,000 annually)
Who doesn’t love the smell of hops in the morning? Smells like…employment. Sure, you’ll spend most of your day cleaning kegs and lugging around malt, but you can finish every day with a cold one without leaving the office.
Ladies Locker Room Ambassador ($8-15 per hour, plus tips)
Some may scoff at a job pouring glasses of wine for ladies in the locker room of a club’s spa, but like the dinosaurs say in The Flintstones, “It’s a living.” Bonus: All the cucumber slices you could dream of—for both your cocktails and your eyes.
Nomadic Brand Ambassador ($15-18 per hour)
When one city simply won’t satisfy your wandering spirit, it’s time to take to the road. The nomadic life can be lonely, though, so make some friends, get paid, and drink all at once by signing on as a brand ambassador for a liquor company, like the “Canbassador” position with Underwood Wine. All you need is a driver's license, a love of liquor and a good eye for Instagram.
Bouncer ($13 per hour)
What’s a college football lineman to do if they don’t make the NFL? Use all that muscle to keep things orderly at the bar, of course. Not only will you score drinks from the staff after your shift, but you might even get a beverage thrown your way by a grateful patron you championed in a tussle. Just be careful to dodge any beverages that are literally thrown your way.
Drinks Writer ($30,000-35,000)
If you’re a writer with a penchant for the bottle (read: 95 percent of writers ever), then find a gig at a website or magazine cracking out copy about your favorite beverages. Bonus: Going to a bar is research for work.