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2. Retail sales cashier

The nitty-gritty: Cha-ching. Smoothly manning the cash register is one of the most important jobs in the store. While there's a great vibe when people are in the gift-buying spirit, it's often repetitious work. You'll need a grasp of basic math, keen attention to detail and be OK with hours on your feet. At some shops, you'll fold and box items, too, and you might handle returns and exchanges. The basic duties: Entering charges for all items minus the value of any coupons or discounts. Taking payment in cash, personal checks, and gift, credit, and debit cards. Requesting additional identification from the customer or calling in for an authorization is standard procedure. Scanners and computers make the job pretty perfunctory, but some registers require price and product data to be entered by hand. Depending on your shift, you might have to open or close registers, which can include counting the money and separating charge slips, coupons and exchange vouchers. Forgo fashion and pony up for comfy footwear. Practice saying, "Did you find everything you were looking for?"

The hours: Variable. Plan on working evenings and weekends.

Median pay range: Pay can range from $7.15 to more than $12 an hour.

Qualifications: Cashiers need little or no previous experience, although that helps. Training is generally on the go with a more seasoned co-worker. Department and chain stores might offer a short training course to get you up to speed on customer service, security, the store's policies and procedures, and cash register operation. Employers generally run a background or credit score check on you to make sure you're trustworthy to handle money. You should be at ease with financial transactions and basic computer commands. Remember — the customer is always right.

Next: If you're eloquent and outgoing, consider this job. >>

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