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10 Bizarre Jobs That Can Pay a Lot of Money

by John Munoz
fact checked by Rachel Jones

Everybody says follow your dream, but when you go to a career fair, the people who make a lot of money have made a deal with the devil and worked in sales. Not my idea of a good time. What if you could actually follow your dreams and still make some good money.

There are a lot of strange jobs out there that pay really well. These jobs are a little outside the box, but they can be a great way to make some money. Who knows, maybe one of these jobs will be the dream job you never knew you wanted.

Related: 10 Weird Jobs You Had No Idea Existed

10 Bingo Manager

The Risky World of Hardcore Bingo (Gambling Documentary) | Real Stories

This may not sound like the most glamorous job, but you can actually make a lot of money managing a bingo hall. The pay can be really good, and you get to work with a bunch of different people.

Bingo managers are responsible for overseeing the operations of a bingo hall. They make sure that all the games are running smoothly and that the players are happy. They also handle all the financial aspects of the business.

Show Me the Money!

Average pay—$67K per year

Top Earners—$169K per year

How Do You Live This Dream?

There’s not much that goes into being a bingo manager, which probably shouldn’t surprise you. You don’t need a degree, just a high school diploma or GED, basic math and computer skills, and the ability to handle money accurately.

The most important requirements are having 3–5 years as a Bingo supervisor, knowing Bingo rules and procedures extremely well, and being registered with your state’s Gaming Control Board.

The high salaries are paid to the managers at major casinos, so you can’t run your nana’s bingo night and expect to earn six figures, but it could get you on the path.

9 Ice Cream Taster

Way Back Wednesday: Edy’s Ice Cream and Natty Boh Beer

Do you love ice cream? Do you want to get paid to eat it? If you answered yes to both of those questions, then a job as an ice cream taster might be perfect for you.

Ice cream tastemakers are responsible for making sure that ice cream is delicious and meets the company’s standards. But it’s not all golden spoons and delectable dairy. Tasters are also responsible for designing new flavors, testing failed flavors, and delivering samples to potential customers.

Show Me the Money!

Average pay—$69K per year

Top Earners—$100K per year

How Do You Live This Dream?

It takes a lot of commitment to be able to spend your day tasting God’s most lordly gift to us. If you want to make the career jump, these are the steps: You’ll need to earn a Bachelor’s in either food or dairy science or become an apprentice and, most importantly, take care of your tongue.

Here are a few tips to bring your palate to the necessary level.

  • No more coffee; you’re a tea drinker now

  • No spicy foods

  • No smoking

  • Always use a golden spoon

8 Snuggler

Professional Snuggler Gets Paid $80 Per Hour to Cuddle Lonely Men | New York Post

The pandemic took a lot of people to dark places mentally, starving them of human contact. Luckily, professional snugglers are helping bring them back.

A professional snuggler is someone who is paid to cuddle with people. This can involve anything from spooning to talking to just sitting in silence. No matter what form the cuddling takes, it is meant to provide comfort and human contact.

Show Me the Money!

Average pay—$60 per hour

Top Earners—$80 per hour

How Do You Live This Dream?

This is a pretty strange job, but it’s actually not that hard to get into. There are a few companies that hire professional cuddlers, and they usually just require you to fill out an application and go through a short training program.

For obvious reasons, you have to be comfortable with strangers being in your personal space. This job would be perfect for an empath, especially if you are great at compassionately listening.

7 Bed Warmer

Getting paid to stay in bed is the ultimate dream of the PJ warrior. Unfortunately, this job is a little less glamorous than it sounds. You’re the one that has to deal with the coldness of the sheets.

A bed warmer is someone who is paid to sleep in a hotel bed before the guest arrives. Depending on how the person likes it, you might spend anywhere from 10 minutes to an hour warming up their bed.

Show Me the Money!

Average pay—$65 per hour

Top Earners—$100 per hour

How Do You Live This Dream?

You could either work in hospitality or start your own gig doing it. Supposedly if you can make it with an ultrarich client, you could make $200k a year putting some heat in their sheets.

6 Ethical Hacker

What is Ethical Hacking?

An ethical hacker is somebody who attempts to penetrate networks and computer systems in order to find security vulnerabilities that could be exploited by malicious hackers.

This is a highly technical job that requires a lot of skill and experience. Ethical hackers are usually employed by companies in order to test their security systems, or they are also often contracted by the government.

Show Me the Money!

Average pay—$169K per year

Top Earners—$787K per year

How Do You Live This Dream?

If this is your dream, there are hefty requirements that need to be met before you can be a certified ethical hacker. On top of the usual troubleshooting savvy and written and verbal skills, you’ll also need the following:

  • Bachelor’s in IT or computer science

  • Expert knowledge of networking systems

  • Expert knowledge of security software

  • Technical knowledge of servers, firewalls, and routers

  • CEH Certification

5 Decoy Executive

Rent-a-Foreigner in China | Op-Docs | The New York Times

This one sounds crazy, and here in the United States, it probably is crazy. However, in China, having a few nicely dressed Americans can give a company an edge in the market.

A decoy executive is somebody hired by a company to pose as a high-level executive. This is usually done in order to make the company seem more successful than it actually is or to impress potential clients. Often, the company that they’re representing may not even exist. But their presence at, say, an auction carries weight. 

Show Me the Money!

Average pay—$200 per day

Top Earners—$1000 per day

How Do You Live This Dream?

There are a few companies that hire decoy executives, and they usually just require you to fill out an application and go through a short training program. You also need to be comfortable with being in the public eye. This is an excellent job for expatriates with some business knowledge.

4 Cruise Ship Captain

Episode 2: Why did I want to be a Cruise Ship Captain?

Sailing the seas while visiting tropical places is what daydreams are made of. But being a cruise ship captain is a lot of responsibility. You’re responsible for the safety of the passengers and crew, as well as the vessel.

Being a cruise ship captain is a very prestigious job, and it comes with a lot of perks. You get to travel the world for free, and you usually have the best private cabin on the ship. A major downside to this career, though, is that it isn’t something that you can wake up and decide to do. It takes years of schooling and experience to become el capitan.

Show Me the Money!

Average pay—$120K per year

Top Earners—$476K per year

How Do You Live This Dream?

You need to have plenty of experience in order to become a cruise ship captain. Most captains start as deck officers or engineers and then work their way up the ranks. On top of the years of experience required, there are also exams and certifications that have to be earned. Most captains also need to have a Bachelor’s and Master’s in maritime science.

3 Hippotherapist

Hippotherapy Explained

This is not what it sounds like. Yes, you are a therapist, but no, you don’t work with hippopotamuses. A hippotherapist is somebody who uses horses in order to help people with disabilities or mental health issues. This therapy can be used to help with balance, coordination, and motor skills.

Hippotherapy is a very effective form of therapy, and it is becoming more and more popular.

Show Me the Money!

Average pay—$50k per year

Top Earners—$100k per year

How Do You Live This Dream?

In order to become a hippotherapist, you need to have a degree in occupational therapy, physical therapy, or speech therapy. You also need to have a certification from the American Hippotherapy Association.

This is a career that is very rewarding, both emotionally and financially. If you have a passion for helping people and working with animals, then this is the perfect job for you.

2 Professional NPC (Stand-in)

Bridesmaid For Hire! Here’s What It’s Like To Be A Professional Bridesmaid | Megyn Kelly TODAY

This job is perfect for people who love to career hop. Basically, you’re the warm body that fills in wherever needed. You could be a bridesmaid for hire, a professional line stander. Some are even hired as fake investors or experts to get other legitimate people excited about an opportunity. Think of it like being an extra in a movie. You never know who or what you’re going to be, but you do know one thing—you won’t be credited.

Show Me the Money!

Average pay—$44k per year

Top Earners—$220k per year

How Do You Live This Dream?

In order to become a professional NPC, you don’t need any experience or qualifications. You just need to be comfortable in any situation and be able to act like a normal person. Just list your services or apply to jobs you find.

1 Golf Ball Diver

Diving Golf Course Pond FOUND 5,000+ LOST Golf Balls!! ($25,000)

This is a job you can find at any golf course. Golf ball divers are responsible for retrieving the balls that end up in water hazards. It may not sound like a glamorous job, but it pays pretty well.

Show Me the Money!

Average pay—$30k per year

Top Earners—$100k per year

How Do You Live This Dream?

In order to become a golf ball diver, you need to be a certified scuba diver. You can find certification courses at most community colleges or online. Once you are certified, you just need to apply to golf courses in your area.

fact checked by Rachel Jones