Career Advice

Blue-Collar Jobs that Pay Well

Job Upon October 12, 2020

While many people are pushing for costly college degrees there has been a recent groundswell of interest in blue-collar jobs. The reason is simple, many people are finding employments without college degrees with starting salaries in excess of what you can reasonably expect as a starting salary with a four-year degree. These are a few high-paying blue-collar jobs to consider.

Oil Rig Workers

While salaries swing wildly according to position and tenure, oil rig workers earn, on average, $99,175 per year. They work hard for their money and sacrifice time away from loved ones while on rigs for weeks or, sometimes, months at a time. But their salaries do allow them to bring home plenty of bacon for their sacrifices.

Elevator Installation and Repair Workers

These hard-working men and women can expect salaries averaging $73,560 for helping people reach new heights every day as they go about their jobs, return home, and take care of business.

Fire Inspectors and Investigators

With an average income of $61,660 per year, it’s no wonder this is a hot industry with quite a bit of competition among blue-collar workers. While you do not necessarily need a college degree for this job, you do need specialized training.


The average pay for machinists is somewhere in the neighborhood of $19.78 per hour with hourly rates as high as $28.10. In other words, it’s an industry where there is plenty of room for growth and you’re off to a good start.


Another hot job that someone has to do is that of a boilermaker who work hard for the money but bring home quite a bit with an average hourly pay of $29.87 and rates of up to $42.17 per hour.

While all eyes are on university education for the win, the truth is that apprenticeships and technical schools can provide a solid earning foundation without nearly the same degree of debt.