Food Service Worker Salary (United States)

Pay for Food Service Workers in the United States is typically around $9.42 per hour. Pay generally spreads from $7.58 per hour to $13.74. The most important factor affecting compensation for this group is residency, followed by the specific employer and years of experience. Unfortunately, some people in this line of work are without benefits—more than half lack coverage. On the flip side, 42 percent have medical insurance and around one third receive dental plans. The majority of Food Service Workers (68 percent) are women. Most people on this career path report moderate levels of job satisfaction. The figures in this overview are derived from responses to the PayScale salary survey.
Food Service Worker Salary (?
XAll compensation data shown are gross, national 10th to 90th percentile ranges. Pay can vary greatly by location. To view local data, take the PayScale survey.
)
$8,274 - $39,236
(Median)
8K
12K
20K
28K
39K
MEDIAN: $20,089
10%
25%
50%
75%
90%
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Food Service Worker Salary (?
XAll compensation data shown are gross, national 10th to 90th percentile ranges. Pay can vary greatly by location. To view local data, take the PayScale survey.
)
$7.58 - $13.74
(Median)
7
9
11
14
MEDIAN: $9.00
10%
50%
75%
90%
Add this chart to your site: 640px    300px

National Salary Data

 (?
XAll compensation data shown are gross, national 10th to 90th percentile ranges. Pay can vary greatly by location. To view local data, take the PayScale survey.
)
$0$14K$28K$42K
Salary
$8,274 - $39,236  
   
Bonus
$0.00 - $392.75  
Profit Sharing
$305.21 - $1,179  
Total Pay (?
XTotal Pay combines base annual salary or hourly wage, bonuses, profit sharing, tips, commissions, overtime pay and other forms of cash earnings, as applicable for this job. It does not include equity (stock) compensation, cash value of retirement benefits, or the value of other non-cash benefits (e.g. healthcare).
)
$15,642 - $30,272  
PayScale
Country: United States | Currency: USD | Updated: 3 Sep 2014 | Individuals Reporting: 99
National Hourly Rate Data (?
XAll compensation data shown are gross, national 10th to 90th percentile ranges. Pay can vary greatly by location. To view local data, take the PayScale survey.
)
$0$8$16$24
Hourly Rate
$7.58 - $13.74  
   
Hourly Tips
$0.00 - $7.27  
Overtime
$0.91 - $22.09  
National Annualized Data (?
XAll compensation data shown are gross, national 10th to 90th percentile ranges. Pay can vary greatly by location. To view local data, take the PayScale survey.
)
$0$16K$32K$48K
Bonus
$0.00 - $392.75  
   
Profit Sharing
$305.21 - $1,179  
Total Pay (?
XTotal Pay combines base annual salary or hourly wage, bonuses, profit sharing, tips, commissions, overtime pay and other forms of cash earnings, as applicable for this job. It does not include equity (stock) compensation, cash value of retirement benefits, or the value of other non-cash benefits (e.g. healthcare).
)
$15,642 - $30,272  
PayScale
Country: United States | Currency: USD | Updated: 3 Sep 2014 | Individuals Reporting: 1,249
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Job Description for Food Service Worker

A food service worker may work as a waiter, waitress or bartender at a restaurant; they may or may not need a certificate or license. Some industries consider bussers and dishwashers to be food service workers. Food service workers can find employment in hospital, nursing home, or school, among many other institutions.
Read More...
Food Service Worker Tasks
  • Complete multiple cash and charge transactions.
  • Serves retail food items.
  • Prepares food orders.
  • Works as short order cook.

Food Service Worker Job Listings

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Popular Employer Salaries for Food Service Worker

Food Service Workers fill the offices of leading firms Subway Restaurant Inc, Sodexo, Inc., Aramark Food Services, Whole Foods Market, Inc., and Wal-Mart Stores, Inc. Whole Foods Market, Inc. leads the field in terms of pay, with a median salary of $22,362.
Salaries are easily beat at Subway Restaurant Inc, where median pay comes to just $16,403, the lowest in the field. What's more, with base pay starting at $15,104 and ending at $20K, range in salary is rather small. Employees at Wal-Mart Stores, Inc can also expect below-average earnings.

Pay by Experience Level for Food Service Worker

Median of all compensation (including tips, bonus, and overtime) by years of experience.
For Food Service Workers, experience is not a major factor in determining pay, and incremental pay growth is standard. Salaries can reach $21K from $18,775 after five to 10 years. Compensation is $24K after 10 to 20 years. After 20 years in the field, Food Service Workers see their salaries growing more slowly, eventually averaging out to $24K. Experienced employees who have 10-20 years of experience make up 18 percent of the workforce; inexperienced individuals who have been working for less than one year comprise less than 10, and senior people with more than 20 years under their belt fill out the remaining less than 10. One to nine years of experience is standard for most employees in this area; a majority of respondents fit between this range.

Pay Difference By Location

Los Angeles
up arrow 28%
Las Vegas
up arrow 27%
New York
up arrow 23%
Philadelphia
up arrow 21%
Dallas
up arrow 13%
Seattle
up arrow 8%
Chicago
up arrow 5%
San Diego
up arrow 4%
Austin
0%
National Average
$20,000
St. Louis
up arrow 1%
Houston
up arrow 3%
San Antonio
up arrow 3%
Atlanta
up arrow 4%
Phoenix
up arrow 7%
Orlando
up arrow 14%
Larger circles over a city indicate a job is popular in that location.
For Food Service Workers, busy Los Angeles offers a higher-than-average pay rate, 28 percent above the national average. Las Vegas, New York, Philadelphia, and Dallas also offer top salaries for Food Service Workers. Workers in these cities can expect to earn about 27 percent, 23 percent, 21 percent, and 13 percent more, respectively. With compensation 14 percent below the national average, Orlando is not known for hefty paychecks and actually represents the lowest-paying market. Workers in Phoenix and Atlanta earn salaries that trail the national average for those in this profession (-7 percent and -4 percent).

Experience Affects Food Service Worker Salaries

Late-Career
up arrow 21%
Experienced
up arrow 19%
Mid-Career
up arrow 5%
National Average
$20,000

Job Satisfaction

Highly satisfied Image
Highly satisfied
Rated 4 out of 5 based on 241 votes.

Gender

Female
68%
female alumni
 
Male
32%
male alumni

Years of Experience

Less than 1 year
8%
1-4 years
45%
5-9 years
21%
10-19 years
18%
20 years or more
7%

Common Health Benefits

medical benefits Medical: 42% dental benefits Dental: 32%
vision benefits Vision: 26% employee benefits None: 55%
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