Looking for a fun job that pays well without a degree or much experience?
Well, you’re not alone.
Data shows that only 21.4% of Americans aged 24 to 64 have a bachelor’s degree, 9.2% have an associate degree, and just 12.6% have a graduate or professional degree.
This leaves about 56% of the population who don’t have a degree.
And I’m one of them.
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I don’t have a college degree.
I didn’t really want to go to college in the first place but attended because I was told that’s what you do once you finish high school.
After just a couple of months, I found that college really wasn’t for me, so I dropped out.
Does my lack of degree mean that I am stuck doing boring jobs?
There are plenty of fun jobs that pay well without a degree (including cash paying under the table jobs!). And I should know; I do one of them. I’ll cover that, along with plenty of others, below.
What’s great about these jobs is that they’re not only fun, but many of them pay well too. Plus, you can do many of them online and from home.
There are jobs available in a range of fields too, so you’re sure to find something to suit you.
(Note: The salary figures below were obtained from the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics. The only exceptions are the numbers reported in the careers Freelance Writer and ESL Teacher, which were obtained from Glassdoor and PayScale, respectively. Figures were current at the time of writing but may change.)
Fun High Paying Jobs without a Degree
Here are some of the best fun jobs that pay well without a degree…
1. Travel agent
- Salary: $40,660
- Training/Education: None
- Why it’s fun: You get to help people to plan their dream vacation
Travel agents sell transportation, accommodation and entertainment activities to people. This gig is awesome because you get to help people to plan something super fun – their vacation!
Most travel agents work for travel agencies.
While travel agents usually work from offices, they can also work remotely, as long as they have a phone and a computer. So this is a gig you could do from home too.
2. Dental assistant
- Salary: $40,080 per year
- Training/Education: Postsecondary nondegree award (certification)
- Why it’s fun: You’ll help people to improve their smile!
Working as a dental assistant allows you to help people to improve their smile and oral health, and you get to meet lots of new people as well.
Dental assistants provide care to patients, take x-rays, keep records, and schedule appointments.
You’ll be on your feet a lot with this gig. And you’ll work in a dentist’s office. Most dental assistants work fulltime.
There are many ways to become a dental assistant. The requirements vary from state to state. Some states will require you to graduate from an accredited program and pass an exam.
There are no formal education requirements in other states though, and dental assistants learn through on-the-job training. Either way, you don’t need a degree – just a certification in some states.
- Salary: $50,850
- Training/education: Fire academy training and certification
- Why it’s fun: You get paid to save lives – making this a fulfilling career.
What’s more exciting than saving people from fires?
That’s why being a firefighter is such an interesting job. Of course, it’s dangerous, but you get to help people, making this not only an interesting career, but a fulfilling one too.
You won’t need a degree for this one. But firefighters typically need a high school diploma and training in emergency medical services.
Most of the time, you’ll get your training at a fire academy and you’ll have to pass written and physical tests, complete a series of interviews, and hold an EMT certification.
As a firefighter, you’ll control and put out fires. You respond when there’s an emergency where life, property or the environment is at risk.
When you’re at the scene of a fire or other emergency, this job can be dangerous. When you’re not at the scene, you remain on call at the fire station. There you sleep, eat, and do other duties during shifts that often last 24 hours. Often, firefighters work more than 40 hours a week.
If you’re fit, strong, and enjoy teamwork, this could be the job for you.
- Salary: $48,760
- Training/education: None
- Why it’s fun: Expressing your creativity is super fun – whether it’s through oil paints or charcoal.
My husband, who also does not hold a degree works as an artist. This is one of those jobs where you have a lot of freedom and can work from pretty much anywhere.
Some artists work out of a studio in their home, others work in art studios located in office buildings, warehouses, or lofts.
Working as an artist is incredibly varied and you get to set your own income.
Most of the time, a bachelor’s degree isn’t required and many artists just work on their craft through practice and repetition.
Artists can sell their work online and in stores or exhibit their work in galleries.
If you’re the creative type, this job could be a perfect fit for you.
5. Stationary Engineer
- Salary: $62,150
- Training/education: Apprenticeship or on-the-job training.
- Why it’s fun: If you enjoy fixing stuff, you’ll love this gig.
If you love to fix things and enjoy mechanics, then working as a stationary engineer could be your perfect job.
Stationary engineers control stationary engines, boilers, and other mechanical equipment.
Most stationary engineers work in manufacturing, hospitals, educational services, and government. If you work in a facility that operates 24 hours a day, you’ll likely work evenings and weekends. It’s common to work shifts as well.
If you enjoy hands-on work, this could be the job for you.
6. Police officer
- Salary: $65,170
- Training/education: On-the-job-training
- Why it’s fun: It’s a varied job where you help people on a daily basis
Police offers work to protect people in their community. They often respond to emergency calls, patrol neighborhoods or work in an office. Sometimes police officers visit schools and community events to share public safety information.
It’s part of a police officer’s job to arrest criminals and prevent crime.
This job isn’t for the faint-hearted. Police work can be physically demanding, stressful, and in many cases, dangerous. And working around the clock in shifts is common.
If you have a passion for helping others, keeping communities safe, and for establishing law and order, then being a police officer might be the job for you.
Most police officers have to graduate from their agency’s training academy before completing a period of on-the-job training. You’ll need to be a U.S. citizen, be at least 21 years old and be able to meet the rigorous physical and personal qualifications required to become a police officer.
7. Freelance writer
- Salary: $52,807
- Training/education: None (good grammar and a few writing samples will get you far)
- Why it’s fun: It’s creative and you get to write about new topics every day.
Okay, so this is the job that I do. Freelance writing is something that anyone get started with.
Sure, some gigs will require you to have a bachelor’s degree. Plenty don’t though. In fact, many writing jobs just require you to have some samples that show you can write.
You can easily get these by writing content for your own blog or just by putting together a PDF or Word Document containing some articles that you’ve written.
I have worked on a number of freelance gigs and have never needed a degree for them.
8. Computer support specialist
- Salary: $56,760
- Training/education: None for many positions
- Why it’s fun: If you’re into technology, this will be a fun job for you
Computer support specialists offer help and advice to computer users and organizations.
Most jobs are fulltime. Some positions are not your typical 9 to 5 gig.
Since computer support is important for businesses, your support services may need to be available 24 hours a day. This means that some support specialists have to work nights or weekends. Many work regular hours though.
Like with freelance writing, some computer support specialist jobs will require a degree, but many don’t.
9. First-line supervisors of police and detectives
- Salary: $91,090
- Training/Education: On-the-job training
- Why it’s fun: You get to assist law enforcement and help people, so it’s super rewarding.
This is one of the highest paid jobs that doesn’t require a degree.
First-line supervisors of police and detectives directly supervise and coordinate activities of members of the police force.
They also make sure that all procedures are carried out in accordance with laws and regulations.
You don’t need a bachelor’s degree. You’ll just need a high school diploma. Sometimes, you may need to have related on-the-job experience, or have undergone training in a vocational school, but often you just need to complete on-the-job-training.
10. Power Plant Operators, Distributors and Dispatchers
- Salary: $85,950
- Training/education: On-the-job training
- Why it’s fun: Enjoy a varied, hands-on job that’s perfect if you’re interested in industry
Power Plant Operators, Distributors and Dispatchers earn a good income. So if you’re looking for a high paying job without a degree, this could be the career for you.
In this job, you control and monitor power-generating equipment, and systems. You usually work shifts.
While you don’t need a degree, you will need extensive on-the-job training and have to underdo a background check.
11. Security Guard
- Salary: $29,710
- Training/education: On-the-job training (and pre-assignment training in some states)
- Why it’s fun: You get to keep people safe, making this a rewarding career
As a security guard, you can work anywhere from the airport to the mall.
Security guards are responsible for guarding, monitoring and patrolling premises. They work in a variety of places, like office buildings, retail stores, and public buildings.
It’s your job to prevent theft and violence and to make sure that all the rules are being followed.
You’ll need to have a clean record and pass a drug test. Some places might require you to get a firearms license too.
Often you’ll need a high school diploma or equivalent, but some jobs may not have any education requirements at all.
The amount of training you’ll receive varies. Most security guards learn their job in a few weeks. Many states recommend that security guards get 8 hours of pre-assignment training, 8 to 16 hours of on-the-job training, and 8 hours of annual training.
Armed guards must complete more rigorous training because they require weapons training, and they may be tested periodically in the use of firearms.
12. Elevator installers and repairers
- Salary: $84,990
- Training/education: Apprenticeship
- Why it’s fun: It’s hands-on and ideal if you enjoy fixing things
Elevator installers and repairers repair and maintain elevators, as well as moving walkways, escalators, and other lifts.
In terms of education, you only need a high school diploma. You will need to complete an apprenticeship too. Currently, 35 states need workers to be licensed.
You can’t be claustrophobic for this one, as elevator installers and repairers often work in cramped quarters inside crawl spaces and machine rooms. They may be exposed to heights too in elevator shafts. Some repairers are on call 24 hours a day and are required to work overtime when essential equipment needs repair.
13. Gas plant operator
- Salary: $71,050
- Training/education: On-the-job training
- Why it’s fun: Varied job that’s ideal if you’re interested in industry
Gas plant operators oversee and operate gas processing equipment. They work with utility companies. It’s your job to control systems and make sure that everything is functioning properly.
While you don’t need a degree to become a gas plant operator, you will need to complete long-term on-the-job training.
14. Barbers, hairstylists and cosmetologists
- Salary: $26,270
- Training/education: Postsecondary nondegree award (certification)
- Why it’s fun: It’s creative and you get to meet lots of new people
Barbers, hairstylists, and cosmetologists offer haircutting, hairstyling, and a variety of other beauty services.
This is a great option for creative types!
While you won’t need a degree, all states require barbers, hairstylists, and cosmetologists to be licensed. And to qualify for a license, you need to graduate from a state-approved barber or cosmetology program and then pass a state exam for licensure.
You’ll be on your feet a lot in this type of industry. Work can be part-time or fulltime.
15. English as a Second Language (ESL) teacher
- Salary: $44,711
- Training/education: Certification in some cases
- Why it’s fun: You help people to learn English and enrich their lives as a result
Teaching English as a second language can be an incredibly rewarding job. Sure, all jobs are stressful in their won way, but if you could get low stress job that pays well, this could be one of them.
And you can easily do this job online as well.
Many positions don’t require you to have a degree. Most of the time, you’ll just need a TEFL certification, but some jobs may not even require you to have that.
Have a read of 20 Best Places to Find ESL Teaching Jobs Online to get started.
There are so many jobs that are fun, interesting and pay well too available for people who don’t have a degree.
So give one of these jobs a try.
And remember that we have tons of posts here on Money Pantry about making money and you don’t need a degree for many of them, so check these out:
- Our Favorite 150 Legitimate Work from Home Jobs with No Start up Fee
- 101 Sites to Find Quick Cash Paying Gigs Near Me (Earn up to $71/Hr)
- 95 Legit Online Jobs for Housewives (Work from Home Without Investment)
Let us know in the comments section below what your ideal career choice is sans degree. And if you already have a fun job that pays well, doesn’t require a degree and you’re happy doing it, Id love to hear about it. Leave a comment below.