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Food Service Worker Salary (United States)

Food Service Workers in the United States can expect wages of $9.53 per hour on average. Earnings generally vary between $7.65 per hour and $13.72. Location is the main element affecting pay for this group — the specific employer and experience level are driving factors as well. The majority of Food Service Workers (68 percent) who took the survey are women. Most Food Service Workers are fairly content with their jobs, and work satisfaction falls in line with the national average. Not all workers are lucky enough to have benefits; in fact, a little more than half are without coverage. Medical insurance is claimed by just over two-fifths and dental insurance is reported by approximately one-third. The information for this rundown comes from respondents who completed PayScale's salary questionnaire.
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.
)
$8,550 - $38,770
(Median)
9K
12K
20K
28K
39K
MEDIAN: $20,418
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.
)
$7.65 - $13.72
(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$13K$26K$39K
Salary
$8,550 - $38,770  
   
Bonus
$0.00 - $403.78  
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).
)
$15,747 - $30,015  
Country: United States | Currency: USD | Updated: 11 Dec 2014 | Individuals Reporting: 106
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
$7.65 - $13.72  
   
Hourly Tips
$0.00 - $3.70  
Overtime
$0.41 - $22.34  
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 - $403.78  
   
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).
)
$15,747 - $30,015  
Country: United States | Currency: USD | Updated: 11 Dec 2014 | Individuals Reporting: 1,290
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Location:
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United States (change)

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

Sodexo, Inc., Subway Restaurant Inc, Aramark Food Services, Target Corporation, and Whole Foods Market, Inc. are top-notch employers for Food Service Workers in this area. The biggest paychecks can be found at Whole Foods Market, Inc. — the median salary there is $22K. Also paying near the top of the field are Sodexo, Inc. at $20K, Compass Group at $20K, and Aramark Food Services, where Food Service Workers annually earn $19K.
Employees at Subway Restaurant Inc take home the smallest paychecks, and $17K is the median salary. Furthermore, range in pay is narrow, with salaries starting at $15K and quickly nearing the top at only $21K. Workers also receive paychecks lighter than average at Aramark ($17K), Target Corporation ($18K), and Wal-Mart Stores, Inc ($19K).

Pay by Experience Level for Food Service Worker

Median of all compensation (including tips, bonus, and overtime) by years of experience.
Food Service Workers with more experience do not necessarily bring home bigger paychecks. In fact, experience in this field tends to impact compensation minimally. Workers with less than five years' experience earn around $19K on average, and those who have five to 10 years under their belts see a higher median salary of $21K. People with 10 to 20 years of experience make an average of about $24K in this role. Food Service Workers who surpass 20 years on the job report pay that isn't higher than those with 10 to 20 years.

Pay Difference By Location

Los Angeles
up arrow 27%
New York
up arrow 23%
Philadelphia
up arrow 23%
Dallas
up arrow 12%
Las Vegas
up arrow 7%
Chicago
up arrow 4%
San Diego
up arrow 3%
Milwaukee
up arrow 3%
Austin
up arrow 3%
Seattle
0%
National Average
$20,000
San Antonio
up arrow 1%
St. Louis
up arrow 2%
Atlanta
up arrow 5%
Phoenix
up arrow 7%
Houston
up arrow 10%
Larger circles over a city indicate a job is popular in that location.
For Food Service Workers, Los Angeles provides a pay rate that is 27 percent greater than the national average. Food Service Workers can also look forward to large paychecks in cities like New York (+23 percent), Philadelphia (+23 percent), Dallas (+12 percent), and Las Vegas (+7 percent). Houston is home to the smallest salaries in the field, lagging the national average by 10 percent. A couple other locations with smaller-than-average paychecks include Phoenix (7 percent lower) and Atlanta (5 percent lower).
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Experience Affects Food Service Worker Salaries

Late-Career
up arrow 18%
Experienced
up arrow 17%
Mid-Career
up arrow 4%
National Average
$20,000

Job Satisfaction

Highly satisfied Image
Highly satisfied
Rated 4 out of 5 based on 244 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: 33%
vision benefits Vision: 26% employee benefits None: 55%