Working as an EMT has many upsides — one of them being the opportunity to break free from the 9-5 schedule grind. The 12- to 24-hour shifts and consecutive stretches of time off leave a convenient window into which to slot a second job. Whether you’re looking to supplement your paycheck, fill free time in a meaningful way, or even explore a potential next life stage or career move, in this post we’re breaking down some of the best side jobs for EMTs.
1. CPR Instructor
EMTs are already certified practitioners of CPR (and some are well versed in ACLS and PALS) — so why not double dip into that coveted professional knowledge and make some extra money by teaching it? Not only is CPR instruction a great source of income, but it’s also a great option for those EMTs in search of a worthwhile second outlet for their skills and background. While teaching might just seem like an obvious side hustle, you’re passing on the necessary tools to the next generation of life savers. Instructing CPR, ACLS and/or PALS is also a top-notch credential if you’re looking to apply to become a firefighter, flight medic, nurse, or physicians a next step for your career — it’s an adjacent activity that will show your proficiency with EMS certainly make your application stand out. A nice fringe benefit is that you’ll usually get all of your certifications and continuing education units for free (which can cost hundreds of dollars).
2. Personal Trainer or Exercise Instructor
Many people who are drawn to EMS professions are adventurous and motivated – and have the fitness and physical work ethic to match. Working as a personal trainer and/or exercise instructor is a great way to put all of those available hours, as well as your passion for staying healthy and helping others, to great use. Starting out by teaching group fitness (think anything from CrossFit to Pilates to kickboxing — the options are endless) is an excellent alternative job for EMTs, and is also useful for making connections and to start building a client list for personal training, which may pay more and allow you to truly set your own schedule. On top of the bankable nature of fitness jobs, you’ll be getting paid to get your workouts in – talk about efficiency!
3. Childcare Provider
For EMTs who like kids and are looking for a side job that’s flexible and fun, seeking work as a babysitter, nanny or childcare program worker is a good option to consider. Families will usually pay top dollar for providers who are certified in CPR and can furnish emergency medical services should the need arise. These jobs usually pay in cash and can garner a good hourly rate for what generally comprises of playing games, helping with homework, making snacks and potentially chauffeuring children to and from activities (with some down time to spare). Childcare is an ideal side hustle for those who enjoy spending time with little ones, are considering future parenthood, and/or want a job that can truly be as flexible time-wise as they want it to be.
4. Rideshare Driver
Driving for Uber or Lyft (or another local rideshare service) is a popular side job for just about any profession — largely due to the incredible flexibility and relative ease of the gig. All you need is a license and a qualified vehicle to start bringing in income right away. Driving brings in about $15-20 an hour on average, and you can choose how much time to invest from there. This model allows EMTs to pick and choose when they’re up for getting out there and making a few extra dollars — taking a couple of days to rest and recover after a particularly exhausting shift is no problem when you’re setting your own schedule.
5. Dog Walker
Being an EMT can be high-octane and stressful at times — making it essential to find ways to relax and decompress between shifts. Taking up dog walking on the side is a wonderful way for canine-loving EMS workers to kill two birds with one stone. Going on walks and spending time with animals are both considered healthy ways to combat stress and anxiety, and, particularly in urban centers, pet owners are always looking for assistance to keep their animals active, meaning that there’s no shortage of dog walking jobs to go around. With its relative ease of scheduling and underrated mental health benefits, this is one of the best (and possibly most underrated) low-key jobs for EMTs.
6. Pool Lifeguard
Looking to use your skills in another beneficial way? Being a pool lifeguard can be a great option for EMTs. Training is quick and easy, and your potential employers will be happy to have such a well trained lifeguard on staff. Typically lifeguards are trained in CPR and advanced first aid, but your EMT license will set you apart from the rest. Enjoy your time in the sun and put your skills to work!
7. Standby Medical
Ever wanted to be ringside at a UFC fight? Or up close and personal at a concert? As an EMT you can sign up for standby medical events through some ambulance companies. These short-term gigs usually pay more than your standard shift per hour and still give you some free time on your days off to do what you want to do. If you’re currently working for an ambulance company that doesn’t offer standby medical events, consider looking for other event service providers to see if you can help.
Take the Next Step With SureFire CPR
If you’ve been looking for a sign to get out there and explore an EMT side job — this is it! In the meantime, build your skills, hone your craft, or even dust up on the safety of your own home and family with SureFire CPR’s resources and products. As an EMT, you probably know better than anyone that you can never be too safe or too prepared. To learn more, contact us online or call us at (949) 630-6679.