How to find a Christmas job

Written by Sarah Mallen, Information & Guidance Coordinator at The Careers Service

The shops would have us believe that Christmas is already here, I have certainly been eating mince pies for weeks!

Many shops and businesses will be looking for “seasonal workers” for the busy Christmas and new year period.  Typically this could be…

  1. Supermarkets  – needing extra warehouse and till staff
  2. High-street stores – needing extra staff before and after Christmas for the sales, plus the inevitable returns!
  3. Restaurants, cafes, hotels, bars, and events needing extra staff
  4. Specialist roles such as Santa’s helpers, Christmas tree sales etc.

When can I work?

The Christmas period will vary according to business needs but could be around 5 weeks (give or take) with full time and part time roles available.

The University vacation period is 14 Dec until 12 Jan, so most students can work full time in this period. Just bear in mind you could be revising for exams in January!

How do I find jobs?

Use Careerslink and go to the vacancy category -> casual seasonal/vacation work

  1. Supermarkets may advertise in store but those roles are also likely to be on their websites. You could look at home or in Manchester depending on where you will be for the holidays.
  2. High-street stores – they will often have a sign up in the window or even do announcements in store – it’s going to be on their website too. Smaller stores – pop in and ask!
  3. Hospitality / catering / events work – ask in the venue and look out for signs in windows.  You could also approach agencies about this type of work if you have had some previous experience. Big pub, restaurant chains and hotels are also likely to advertise on their websites.
  4. Christmas elves, Santas and Christmas tree sellers – look for adverts in shopping malls and garden centres, anywhere that has a Christmas Grotto!
  5. Social media – Twitter  look for #Jinglejobs, or follow stores/ businesses for alerts.
  6. Shopping centres like the Arndale and Trafford Centre have their own jobs websites which are also work checking out.
  7. If you are looking for jobs back home ask friends and family to look out for you!

How do I apply?

Follow the instructions on websites and on any adverts you see.  Some stores will want a formal application and or a CV, others may not depending on the skills they are looking for.

The following skills / experience will be useful to mention.

  1. Teamwork
  2. Good customer service
  3. Communication skills
  4. Good organisation / time management
  5. Ability to follow instructions and learn quickly
  6. Attention to detail.
  7. Ability to work under pressure

All Undergraduate-highlighted

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