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12 Great Holiday Jobs

There’s nothing like extra cash to brighten the season

10. Shipping clerk

Big package shippers such as UPS and FedEx need your helping hands, but the small boutique around the corner selling hand-dipped chocolate-covered candies might, too. Knowing how to pack an item so it arrives intact, applying proper insurance coverage, affixing labels, working a cash register, and arranging pickups and accepting deliveries may also be part of the job. Heavy lifting may also be required.

Pay range: $9.22 to $21.79 an hour.

Qualifications: Retail experience staffing a cash register helps. Background checks are standard for most positions.

11. Bartending/waiting tables/catering

Unflappability and a good memory are needed for these jobs. It goes without saying, of course, that a friendly persona and an ability to smooth ruffled feathers are part of the deal. A certain level of physical fitness is required. Catering companies also use bartenders and servers to work private parties. If you are hired for a catering gig, you might be involved in menu planning, food preparation and setup.

Pay range: Bartending: $7.85 to $15.49 per hour and up, plus tips. Wait staff: $7.79 to $14.19, plus tips. Caterers should expect an hourly range between $8.29 and $17.83 according to Payscale.com, but can run up to $20 an hour, plus tips.

Qualifications: Past experience is helpful, but other positions where you've worked with people, even as a volunteer, are worth noting. Personal and professional references are valuable calling cards.

12. Baker

Whipping up a batch of holiday cookies is a sweet pleasure. If you can take the heat, get in the kitchen. Look for jobs at local bakeries and in the bakery sections at grocery stores.

Pay range: $8.27 to $17.78 an hour.

Qualifications: A love of baking and culinary chops.

Kerry Hannon, AARP jobs expert, is a career transition expert and an award-winning author. Her latest book is Great Jobs for Everyone 50+: Finding Work That Keeps You Hapy and Healthy … and Pays the Bills.

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