Many students are interested in the idea of part-time work, and taking advantage of the benefits you can get from it. But, fitting it in is another matter - you can't go skipping classes and missing deadlines just to earn a few pounds, and the demands of your course don't really allow for much free time. The amount of time you have to work might be limited, but not impossible - why not think about going for a job during the Christmas holidays?
As you probably know from the adverts, window displays, music and traditions that start to emerge as soon as the Halloween candy wrappers have been swept up, Christmas is not just a holiday, but a huge industry. Workers in different businesses go into overdrive trying to meet the demands of stock, customer service and deadlines during this very busy period, and they often need a few extra hands to help them get through it all.
This is an ideal situation for students, as these temporary positions crop up just as the autumn term is winding down. They don't interfere as much with studies as they're only a few weeks long, and the positions can carry on past Boxing Day, giving you plenty of time to boost your bank account.
The most obvious Christmas jobs are in the retail industry, as this is their busiest period. A lot of students have clued into this - in fact, both Sainsbury's and ASDA say that a large proportion of their seasonal staff are students. It sometimes happens that you'll be able to stay on working part-time after the holidays are over - if you've built up a good relationship with your manager, then you may be able to work out a schedule that fits in with your studies.
In addition to buying presents, Christmas means having parties - so, another popular type of Christmas job is working for catering firms and hospitality outlets. They're always in need of additional workers during the various festive events going on throughout December. Many offer competitive rates of pay, as well as the chance to take home a bit extra from tips.
If you are planning to apply for a Christmas job, then it's best to start looking as soon as possible. Most large retailers post their Christmas temp jobs online from as early as September, even though the job itself may not begin until late November - they'll want to make sure they have enough people to handle the busy period, and it's also in your interest to secure a job sooner rather than later. If you can, hand in your CV in person at any shops near where you live - this way, you have a good chance of speaking with the manager, which not only helps you to find out more about the job, but gives you a personal connection that may help when it comes time to hire someone.
An important thing to remember when having a job during the Christmas period is that if you expect to earn less than £7,475 from your job, and you are still a student, you shouldn't have to pay tax on what you earn. Ask your employer for a P38 form, which will help you sort this out.