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20 Great Jobs if You're a Super Early Riser


Many people like to wake up at the crack of dawn and jumpstart their workday. Such people are more productive in the morning and do not mind leaving behind the sheets, drinking coffee, and getting started before dawn. If this sounds like you, here is a complete list of the top 20 early morning Jobs you could do if you are a super early riser.

20. Shop Owner

Shop owners that run establishments like groceries, small retails, or produce stores need to have their doors open early in the morning. Since opening a shop requires cleaning, stocking, balancing the books, and shelving the produce, they have to wake up very early. Not doing so will mean having to complete these tasks with customers in the shop, which could affect service delivery.

19. Air Traffic Controller

Air traffic controllers work throughout the day, but some need to direct early-morning flights, which means they need to be in the airport before the planes leave. The job description here includes transferring flight control to nearby towers, issuing takeoff and landing directions, directing aircraft movement, and controlling ground movement on taxi and airport runways. To qualify for air traffic control, you will need to complete a course at the Federal Aviation Administration academy and get a degree from an Air Traffic Training Initiative Program.

18. Barista

A significant percentage of Americans begin their day with coffee. Café workers and baristas need to wake up very early to prepare these drinks, clean the café, and serve incoming customers. If you can be up at 4 AM and be ready to serve customers hot coffee with a smile on your face, this can be a great opportunity. You can usually learn to be a barista on the job, but you will need good people skills.

17. Baker

According to WebMD, breakfast is the most important meal of the day. Because most people know this, they will usually start their day with a donut, cookie, croissant, muffin, or some pancakes. This means that bakers need to wake up very early to get these baked treats ready for their customers. Whether you run your bakery or work at one, working here is a great reason to start your day very early. Bakers need baking and food service experience, but you can always learn on the job.

16. Supermarket Stocker

If you have ever gone grocery shopping in the morning, you likely found several attendants busy at work receiving, packaging, and shelving items in the supermarket. Produce needs to hit the shelves early, so customers don't face blocked aisles or slowed shopping when they come in during shopping hours. If you can handle some heavy lifting and like organizing, this is a great gig for an early riser.

15. Flight Attendant

If you like spending time in planes but do not wish to become a pilot, flight attendant is another job that will tickle your fancy as an early riser. Flight attendants are responsible for keeping passengers safe, helping people use entertainment systems, and serving meals and drinks, among other things. Since the earliest flights – 7 AM – begin boarding earlier than this, they need to be at the airport well in advance. You will need a GED or high school diploma and to be at least 21 years old to qualify for this job.

14. Recyclable or Refuse Materials Collector

Professionals that collect refuse or recyclable materials also need to be up before most other people. You will usually hear their trucks driving through the neighborhood very early in the morning, which means they woke up even earlier. Essentially, this job is an excellent pick for you if, in addition to being an early riser, you like keeping the environment clean and have a commercial driver’s license. You will also need to learn to operate side-loaders and dumpster trucks as well as pass a drug test and background check, although this will depend on your employer.

13. Mail Carrier

Delivering packages and letters is another role that requires an early riser. Mail carriers have to report to the post office very early in the morning to collect and organize their mail before starting their workday. In most cases, a shift will end in the afternoon, after which you can make up for missing some sleep in the morning or do something else. Mail carriers must be permanent US residents or citizens and must pass medical, drug, and criminal screenings.

12. Morning News Producer

If you enjoy waking up to intense environments filled with people, morning news production may just be the job for you. These professionals organize the photographers, field crew, reporters, studio crew, and director in addition to running and delivering a good newscast. Moreover, they are responsible for editing and organizing the show for proper flow, finding leads, monitoring the wire for breaking stories, and maintaining communication between the team members. It is an intense job that requires you to be up and sharp very early as well as have good social media and communication skills.

11. 911 Operator

911 operators are crucial to emergency services in any area code. They receive calls for the fire department, police, and ambulance services in a given area and dispatch emergency responders to the source of the 911 calls. Additionally, they are required to track emergency vehicles, log their calls, and report on shift events. While 911 operators work shifts, if you prefer to get to work early rather than take the night shift, you always have the option of getting the very first shift of the day. Note: 911 operator requirements vary from state to state, but most states require that you have a college degree in a related field, such as communications or emergency management. You will also need skills like critical incident stress, suicide prevention, and advanced CPR and first aid.

10. Freelancer

While freelancers usually set their own hours, their job often includes client deadlines. These deadlines can fall at odd hours of the day, including very early in the morning, which makes this job ideal for early risers. Sometimes, a freelancer will be working in a different time zone. The time difference will force them to either stay up late or wake up early to meet the set client deadlines.

9. Personal Trainer

While personal trainers generally get to set their own hours, many clients prefer early morning sessions. So, in addition to personal trainer certification and CPR and first aid qualification, you need to be willing to wake up early to make a good personal trainer. Your workload will lean heavily toward the early morning, and then you can take some classes to fill your evenings or do something else.

8. Radio Jockey and Reporters

Radio jockeys and reporters that run a morning show need to be in the studio very early. Because they go on air first thing in the morning, they need to get to work early and prepare their sets or learn about the latest news related to their show. Generally, the to-do list includes writing content, editing it so that it is long enough for the duration of the show, and working on sound and lighting. A great perk of this job is that you get to entertain other early risers like yourself!

7. Military Member

According to, basic military training does not involve a lot of sleeping in. Members of the military wake up at 5 AM every day without fail, which is a huge commitment. So, if you are passionate about serving your country and do not mind waking up before dawn every day, consider joining the military. Note: In addition to a salary, military members receive benefits like a guaranteed retirement, tuition assistance, paid vacation, free food and housing, and healthcare.

6. Farm Worker

Farmers perform many activities on the farm, including milking, planting, weeding, feeding, cleaning, and breeding. Most of these need to be done early in the morning for effective running on the farm. For example, dairy cows need to be milked early if the milk is going to reach the market or breakfast table on time. Animals also need to be tended to in the morning, fed, and watered so that they can have a productive day. Additionally, getting up early allows farmers to avoid working under the hot sun.

5. Social Media Manager

Social media managers must be on top of trending topics, breaking news, and the latest developments in their fields of interest. While most social media platforms offer scheduling options, the best way to do this is to wake up early – and sometimes go to sleep late – so that you are the first person to get the news. Waking up early is a crucial part of this job because it gives you enough time to strategize for your client before a specific news item breaks the internet.

4. Airport Ticket Agent

Air ticket agents need to get to the airport early to help people check into their flights, check their bags, and get to the right gate. Since early travelers need to check in a couple of hours before their flight, air ticket agents must be there at about 4 AM or earlier. This job is great for you if you love traveling and would enjoy some travel perks. It is also ideal for you if you have other commitments during the day because you can finish your shift early and go about your other duties. Tip: Some airport ticket agent shifts begin early but last into the evening. Check your schedule before making a commitment.

3. Truck Driver

Truck drivers deliver essential cargo across the country daily, and getting stuck in rush hour traffic is far from ideal. This is why a large number of these professionals wake up as early as 4 AM or earlier to get on the road. Additionally, many truck drivers spend about 11 cumulative hours on the road after resting for 10 consecutive hours. This means that to complete a full work day, they must get up early when traffic is manageable and throughout the day. To become a truck driver, you will need to pass an aptitude test, demonstrate skills like attention to detail, pass medical exams, and get a commercial truck driving license. You will also need to show that you can safely drive huge vehicles through big cities and in situations like bad weather and heavy traffic.

2. Rideshare Driver

There are currently over 2 million Lyft and Uber drivers in the United States alone. Rideshare driving is an excellent early morning job because it offers a flexible schedule and, if you live close to an airport, you can make a lot of money in the morning. In addition to getting to set your own hours, this job also makes for a great workday if you are a sociable person. You will need a Social Security number, insurance, proof of vehicle registration, a driver’s license, and, of course, a rideshare car.

1. Healthcare Providers

It is safe to say that healthcare providers have some of the most unpredictable sleep schedules in the entire workforce. Whether you are a medical consultant, general practitioner, surgeon, or nurse, you never know when you will be called in for a medical emergency. This means you have to be very comfortable with sleeping late, not sleeping for hours on end, and waking up very early. If you do not mind the latter and are passionate about helping people, you should consider healthcare. Nurses, in particular, need to work longer days but shorter weeks. A typical nurse's shift may begin at 7 AM and end at 7 PM. In addition to this, Health Affairs reports that specialized unit nurses like those working in intensive care, dialysis, or surgery, need to be available to work on-call. These types of shifts have been shown to affect their sleep schedules, but the work is very fulfilling and also pays well.

Allen Lee

Written by Allen Lee

Allen Lee is a Toronto-based freelance writer who studied business in school but has since turned to other pursuits. He spends more time than is perhaps wise with his eyes fixed on a screen either reading history books, keeping up with international news, or playing the latest releases on the Steam platform, which serve as the subject matter for much of his writing output. Currently, Lee is practicing the smidgen of Chinese that he picked up while visiting the Chinese mainland in hopes of someday being able to read certain historical texts in their original language.

Read more posts by Allen Lee

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