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If you’re thinking about getting a part-time job, you might have some questions about what exactly defines “part-time”. How many hours do I work? Am I paid an hourly wage or a salary? Is a part-time job right for me? Read on for the answers!


There is no universal definition of part-time or full-time jobs, as individual employers determine employment status.

That being said, we can ballpark the hours for part-time jobs. According to sources like the Affordable Care Act and the Bureau of Labor Statistics, employees working full-time jobs work at least 30-35 hours per week.

It can, therefore, be assumed that a part-time job is fewer than 30 hours per week.

Wage: Salary vs. Hourly

With a few special exceptions, it is safe to assume that the vast majority of part-time jobs are paid hourly. If you're in the SF Bay Area, be sure to check the minimum wage in your city here.

Reasons To Work Part-Time

Some people want a full-time job but have to settle for part-time employment. This is known as “involuntary part-time.” It's most commonly seen during economic recessions.

Other people choose to work part-time jobs.  The most common reasons include: 

  • Caring for children 
  • Health or medical limitations 
  • In-school or training 
  • Other family or personal obligations 
  • In retirement

If you’re looking for part-time work, some of the coolest part-time jobs can be found at local businesses in your neighborhood. Check out the Localwise job listings to find the right one for you!

Did we miss something important? Share your questions in the comments section below.

Note: This information is for guidance only and should not be used to make legal decisions. We recommend talking to local legal counsel for assistance.

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