Top 16 Overnight Shift Jobs
There are many different types of jobs available for people who want to work overnight hours. If you’re a parent who wants to minimize childcare expenses, a student who takes classes during the day, someone who needs additional income, or a night owl who is most productive after dark, a night job might be the right fit for you.
Of course, the right job for you depends on your skills, interests, education, training, and prior experience. Some of the jobs below don’t require much experience. For others, like emergency room physicians, you will need specialized training and an advanced degree.
Top 16 Overnight Jobs
Here’s an overview of some of the positions available for workers who want evening, night, and graveyard shifts. If you're looking for a part-time evening job or for a weekend job, there are also plenty of options to consider.
Keep in mind that the hours of your shift may vary depending on your employer and the type of position you hold.
1. Emergency Room Doctor
Evenings are the busiest time for emergency rooms, so there is a strong demand for doctors to work night shifts. Emergency room doctors must quickly diagnose and prioritize a broad range of illnesses and injuries. They must decide which tests and assessments are required to confirm diagnoses and make referrals to specialists as warranted.
Job Requirements: Emergency room physicians must complete a medical degree and meet licensing requirements in their state. They must also be familiar with emergency room protocols.
Salary: According to Salary.com, emergency room doctors earn a median annual salary of $292,645.
2. Air Traffic Controller
Air traffic controllers work at all hours when airports are in operation, including evenings and weekends. They monitor the movement of aircraft on the ground and in the airspace around airports. Air traffic controllers communicate with flight staff about appropriate approaches to—and departures from—airports.
Some controllers monitor aircraft on routes from one airport to another. They inform pilots about weather and runway conditions and closures.
Job Requirements: Air traffic controllers usually must have a bachelor's degree and complete a Federal Aviation Administration training program covering principles of aviation, weather, clearances, map reading, and similar topics.
Salary: According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), air traffic controllers earn a median annual salary of $122,990.
3. Physician Assistant
Physician assistants assess patients' symptoms, adjust medications, and carry out procedures. They also consult with physicians and specialists to modify treatment plans as warranted.
Job Requirements: Candidates must complete undergraduate coursework in science and hold a master's degree from an approved physician assistant program.
Salary: According to the BLS, physician assistants earn a median annual salary of $112,260.
4. Medical Sonographer
Ultrasound technicians and other medical imaging professionals interpret doctors' orders and operate imaging equipment to determine the nature and extent of injuries, illnesses, and anatomical abnormalities.
Job Requirements: Medical sonographers must complete an associate's or bachelor's degree with coursework in anatomy, medical terminology, and applied science, and must have clinical experience in imaging techniques. Most employers prefer candidates who are certified by the American Registry for Diagnostic Medical Sonography.
Salary: Per the BLS, medical sonographers earn a median annual salary of $68,750.
5. Registered Nurse
Nurses can generally work when and where they want, and night work is usually an option. They must have the patience and sensitivity to help individuals who are often distressed and difficult to handle. Sound judgment is required when deciding whether to call in other healthcare professionals based on emerging symptoms.
There are also non-nursing jobs for nurses that you may want to consider if you're interested in a career switch.
Job Requirements: Registered nurses must complete either an associate's or bachelor’s degree at a nursing school or college, including coursework in anatomy, microbiology, chemistry, and behavioral science. Ongoing learning is required to keep pace with current health issues and nursing practices.
Salary: The BLS reports that registered nurses earn a median annual salary of $73,300.
6. Police Officer
Police officers can work evening and overnight shifts. They patrol roadways and neighborhoods and respond to accidents, crimes, and other emergencies. Police officers must understand and apply the law to evolving situations with discretion and sensitivity. They maintain relationships with community members in their area to help prevent crimes and secure leads when investigating crimes.
Job Requirements: Police officers need at least a high school diploma. College coursework in law or criminal justice is helpful and required for federal government and some state or municipal positions.
Salary: According to the BLS, police officers earn a median annual salary of $65,170.
Firefighters must be available at all hours to respond to fires and related emergencies. Most firefighters work 24-hour shifts, so they must be prepared to work both daytime and evening hours. They test and prepare equipment and carry out drills and exercises to prepare for emergencies in different settings. Firefighters must be prepared to take on dangerous assignments and risk injury and even death.
Job Requirements: A high school diploma is required to become a firefighter. Some attend fire training academies while others are trained on the job. Many firefighters complete EMT training as well.
Salary: The BLS reports that firefighters earn a median annual salary of $50,850.
Paramedics and EMTs staff emergency medical corps around the clock. They respond to emergencies and assess the condition of sick and injured patients. They provide emergency care and consult remotely with doctors about complex situations. EMTs safely transport patients to healthcare facilities as warranted.
Job Requirements: Paramedics and EMTs complete post-secondary programs in emergency medical technology. Some paramedics require an associate's degree. Advanced-level paramedics complete programs requiring 1,200 hours of instruction.
Salary: According to the BLS, paramedics and EMTs earn a median annual salary of $35,400.
9. Security Guard
Night watch security guards are tasked with securing facilities at all hours of the day and night. Security guards must patrol the premises where they work and monitor activity. They screen visitors and make sure that dangerous materials are not allowed into facilities. Security guards monitor visual feeds of activity, detain violators, and write reports about violations.
Job Requirements: Security guards usually have a high school diploma. Supervisors and managers often have an associate's or bachelor's degree with coursework in law enforcement or criminal justice. Retired law enforcement professionals often gravitate to positions in the security field.
Salary: According to the BLS, security guards earn a median annual salary of $29,680.
10. Taxi/Rideshare Driver
Opportunities abound for drivers to transport patrons from airports, bars, and restaurants. Ridesharing service drivers are constantly rated by customers based on the quality of their interactions with passengers and level of customer service.
Job Requirements: Drivers are evaluated for their driving history and must have relatively clean records to be hired. They need a valid driver's license and in some locations, a special license. There are also minimum insurance requirements.
Salary: According to the BLS, taxi and ride-sharing drivers earn a median annual salary of $25,980.
11. Nursing Assistant and Home Health Aide
Nursing assistants and home health aides are needed around the clock in hospitals, nursing homes, assisted living facilities, and in patients' homes. Due to the aging of baby boomers, these fields have a high projected growth rate over the next 10 years (8% for nursing assistants and 34% for home health aides). They monitor and measure vital signs and observe the health state of patients.
Nursing assistants and home health aides bathe, feed, and change patients and help them perform other activities of daily life.
Job Requirements: Nursing assistants complete a state-approved education program and pass a state competency exam. Home health aides typically participate in short-term on-the-job training.
Salary: Per the BLS, nursing assistants earn a median annual salary of $29,640, while home health aides earn a median annual salary of $25,280.
12. Hotel and Resort Front Desk Clerk
Hotel and resort front desk clerks greet and register patrons, answer questions about reservations, inform lodgers about the amenities of their establishments, respond to requests from patrons for items, and resolve problems with accommodation. Front desks must be staffed at all hours, so evening and overnight positions are often available.
Job Requirements: Positions at the front desk usually require only a high school diploma. On-the-job training is provided.
Salary: According to the BLS, hotel and resort front desk clerks earn a median annual salary of $24,470.
13. Freelance Writer
Freelance writers develop content for online and print publications. Though they may have deadlines or need to interact with editors during traditional business hours, most of their work can be carried out during evenings, overnight, or on weekends.
Job Requirements: Writers often have a college degree and/or expertise in a particular content area, but candidates with strong and relevant writing skills can often secure work without formal academic credentials.
Salary: According to PayScale, freelance writers earn an average annual salary of $40,547.
14. Customer Service Representative
Consumers of all types of products and services demand access to customer service support during evenings, nights, and weekends. Customer service representatives process orders, provide information, answer questions, and solve the problems for users of products/services.
Cable companies, insurance entities, investment companies, banks, and telecommunications companies are common employers of after-hours customer service representatives.
Job Requirements: Customer service representatives typically need a high school diploma and receive on-the-job training to learn about the products/services of their organization. Knowledge-intensive positions that deal with technical, business, or investment products may require a bachelor's degree in that particular area.
Salary: The BLS reports that customer service representatives earn a median annual salary of $34,710.
15. Hospital/Urgent Care Intake Worker
Intake workers for hospitals and urgent care facilities receive prospective patients and their families. They screen visitors regarding the urgency of their concerns and call medical staff if immediate intervention is required. Intake specialists secure information about health insurance and other background information to establish a patient record.
They distribute and explain forms for patients to complete regarding privacy, liability, and other issues. Evening, overnight, and weekend shifts are often available because most of these facilities are open 24 hours a day.
Job Requirements: A high school diploma is required and on-the-job training is often provided.
Salary: According to PayScale, intake workers earn a median annual salary of $37,835.
16. Residential Counselor
Residential counselors supervise troubled young people, persons with special needs, substance abusers, and others who require monitoring and support in overnight facilities such as group homes. They observe behavior and report changes or concerns to professional staff. They also model appropriate communication, intercede to diffuse conflicts, and provide emotional support.
Colleges and private high schools hire resident assistants to monitor and support students in residence halls.
Evening, overnight, and weekend shifts are available because residents need care and supervision around the clock.
Job Requirements: A high school diploma and strong interpersonal/communication skills are sufficient for many jobs. College coursework in human services, social work, or psychology is desirable.
Salary: According to PayScale, residential counselors earn a median annual salary of $38,551.