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How Many Hours Is Part-Time? Work Less While Still Earning More In 2023

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Have you ever thought about taking on a part-time job but need to know precisely what a part-time job is? You’re not alone.

It was confusing for me when I first started looking into part-time jobs. I was concerned about how many hours I could work around school but still cover our bills.

We put together this blog post to help you better understand a part-time job, the types of part-time jobs, and just how many hours a week you can expect to work.

How Many Hours Is Part Time

Definition Of Part-Time Job

When researching this post, it was surprising to learn that there is no single official definition of a part-time job. Many different federal agencies attempt to define how many hours a week are part-time:

  • The Bureau of Labor Statistics says part-time workers work 35 hours or less weekly. But the Bureau of Labor Statistics set that definition for statistical purposes.
  • The Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) doesn’t define what part-time employees are or what part-time hours are. But the Fair Labor Standards Act provides guidelines for employers regarding minimum wage, hours per week worked, record keeping, and child labor.
  • Healthcare.gov defines part-time workers in the Affordable Care Act as people working fewer hours – an average of 30 hours or less per week.
  • The Internal Revenue Service defines full-time hours instead of part-time hours and refers back to the Affordable Care Act. The IRS says that a full-time job is considered 30 hours a week or 130 hours per month.

After seeing the definitions from the federal agencies, it’s easy to see how confusing it can get when trying to figure out how many part-time hours per week to work.

The common thing we found between each is that each agency leaves it up to the employer to decide who is a part-time employee and a full-time employee.

Full-Time Vs. Part-Time Workers

Women working from home on her online business

The most significant difference between part-time and full-time employees is how many hours per week are worked.

A full-time job typically requires an employee to work 40 hours per week (full-time hours).

Take-home pay will vary based on your work hours- a part-time employee is often paid less than a full-time employee if they make the same hourly rate.

Finally, part-time employees may not be eligible for certain benefits that full-time employees receive, such as:

  • offer health insurance coverage
  • paid time off
  • retirement plans.

Make sure you understand what is expected of part-time employees from each before making your decision. It’s essential to weigh all the pros and cons when deciding between full-time employment and a part-time position.

Pros & Cons Of Working Part-Time


  • Work fewer hours per week than full-time employees (anywhere below 35 hours in general)
  • Spend more time with your family or pursue other interests outside of work
  • Part-time positions can be a great way to transition back into the workforce after taking some time off from full-time employment


  • May not receive full-time benefits, like health insurance or paid time
  • May not be eligible for overtime pay

Part-Time Jobs & Side Hustles

Sometimes, “part-time jobs” and “side hustles” are used interchangeably. But they aren’t exactly the same.

You could consider having a side hustle to be working part-time, but the main difference is that many side hustles are on the side of your job (for part-time or full-time workers).

Many side hustles are also often low-cost business ideas where you work for yourself instead of a company. You have the freedom to take on projects you like and do work that really interests you.

Does it sound good to be your own boss and make $20+ an hour? Some of our favorite side hustles that pay well are:

1. Proofreader

Becoming a proofreader can be the first significant step to side hustling for more money! You can start small, even with no experience, and work a few hours a week to start.

Proofreaders are responsible for reading through written materials and correcting any errors. These errors include grammar, spelling, punctuation, syntax, or formatting.

Proofreaders must pay attention to details and ensure that all content is accurate and consistent, including blog articles like ours, newspaper articles, books, and much more. 

Courses and workshops are available to help you learn more about becoming a proofreader. The one we recommend is the FREE workshop by Proofread Anywhere

Check out more about Proofread Anywhere in our Proofread Anywhere Review

2. Blogger


Blogging has been our best side hustle and has become more than that after a few years. We’ve been able to quit our full-time jobs and make a full-time income from our blog.

We work a flexible schedule and have a work-life balance that we love!

We decide how many hours a week we work each day. If one of our kids gets sick, we don’t need sick leave; we pause writing and get back to it later.

We have a step-by-step guide to starting a successful blog and having your site up and running in less than a day!

Our workbook Start Your Blog Boot Camp can help you get organized, too. With our steps, you can map out what you’ll write about, who your audience will be, and how you can monetize your writing.

3. Freelance Writer

Freelance writing is a great way to start your own business, gain experience in the industry, and make some extra money. 

Even as a new writer, you can earn over $15 an hour to write for blogs, magazines, books, and more. Pick a niche that interests you or you know a lot about, and you’ll quickly be on a path to financial freedom!

I recommend starting a profile on FlexJobs, where you can apply for jobs and have clients contact you one-on-one for projects right up your alley.

With FlexJobs, you can create profiles that include information about yourself, such as your experience level and areas of expertise, and links to samples of your written work.

4. Virtual Assistant

Becoming a virtual assistant is the perfect opportunity for anyone with an entrepreneurial spirit who wants to be their own boss.

Virtual assistants provide remote support services such as administrative, creative, and technical assistance.

Not only is this an excellent way to make money on the side, but it also gives you the flexibility to work when you want and from wherever you choose.

With the right tools and strategies, starting a virtual assistant side hustle is easier than ever. You can start a profile on FlexJobs and see all the great job postings available!

5. Dog Walker

Working as a dog walker can be a great way to make extra money if you love animals and don’t mind being outside during different seasons.

It provides plenty of exercise and socialization for yourself and the pups in your care! And if you’re a stay-at-home mom looking for work, you can even bring the kids along to join in.

Rover connects you with local dog owners who need help walking their pups. You can set your rates and how many hours a week you want to work, and you’ll get to meet new people and furry friends along the way!

6. Delivery Driver

The gig economy has made it easier to make some extra money on the side.

One of the most significant advantages of being a part-time delivery driver is that you can work whatever hours you want and as often as you want.

You can pick up shifts here and there when you need them or commit to set hours each week if that works better for your lifestyle. It’s totally up to you!

One of the most popular and flexible ways to deliver food is by becoming a part-time delivery driver for Postmates, DoorDash, Uber Eats, or Grubhub.

FAQs For Part-Timers

Can part-timers get vacation and other benefits?

Health Insurance and benefits papers

You may think that part-time employees don’t qualify for benefits, but that is only sometimes true. The truth is the amount and type of benefits a part-time employee can receive varies by employer and depends on the number of hours per week worked.

Many companies offer vacation time and other benefits to part-timers, but there are some things you should know before assuming you can get these same benefits from your part-time job. 

Only fourteen states have mandatory sick leave laws – Arizona, California, Colorado, Connecticut, Maryland, Massachusetts, New York, Oregon, Rhode Island, Vermont, and Washington. The amount of sick leave ranges from five to fourteen days.

What companies hire part-time with benefits?

Not all part-time employment offers benefits, but you can be lucky and find some that offer insurance, retirement contributions, and more.

Some of the best companies to work part-time hours are:

  1. UPS
  2. Amazon
  3. Starbucks
  4. Chipotle
  5. JP Morgan Chase

Our post, 18 Best Part-Time Jobs With Health Insurance, is an excellent resource for those seeking part-time jobs with health benefits.

Is freelancing considered a part-time job?

Freelancing could be considered a part-time job based on how many hours is part-time. Freelancers usually work per project and work fewer hours per week than a traditional job.

Unlike a traditional full-time employee or part-time job, freelancing offers flexibility and control over how many hours you freelance; you can choose how many hours a week you want to work.

But most of the time, freelancing is usually considered a side hustle. From setting up an Etsy store to providing writing, editing, and design services, there are numerous ways to make money freelancing.

Where can I find freelancing jobs?

Job boards like FlexJobs, Upwork, and Fiverr offer many job postings from companies looking for freelance workers.

These websites allow you to create a profile so employers can easily search for candidates based on their skill sets and experience levels. 

Networking sites like LinkedIn are great for finding freelance jobs because they allow you to connect directly with potential employers who may not have posted any job openings on other platforms.

Key Takeaways

Part Timer Working From Home On Her Couch

Part-time jobs can be gratifying and offer many benefits, including flexible hours and competitive pay. With the proper research and preparation, you can find a great job that hires part-time employees that fits your lifestyle.

So take some time to research what kind of job best fits your needs and get started on the path to success. Ask yourself whether you want to work part-time hours or full-time hours.

With so many options for side hustles and part-time jobs, there has never been a better time to start working less and earning more. What are you waiting for?

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