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What Do the 10 Most ‘New York’ Jobs Pay?

Topics: Data & Research
It might seem obvious, but some cities are just better than others in terms of opportunity for various occupations, even though high-paying jobs are often pretty similar, city to city.
new york jobs
Image Credit: Andrew Ruiz/Unsplash

As a result, jobs are more common in some cities than others. For example, PayScale recently dug into its salary data to determine which jobs (both high-paying and not-so-high-paying) were more common in New York City than other metro areas.

These are some of the jobs that you’re more likely to find in New York than most other places in the country:

  1. Fashion Designers: No surprise here — fashion is still big business in NYC, even if much of the clothing is made elsewhere. New York also boasts some of the country’s finest fashion-focused schools. PayScale’s College Salary Report shows that an associate degree from the Fashion Institute of Technology sets up grads for a higher salary than many four-year degrees.
  • Relative Commonness: 9
  • Median Annual Pay:  $58,000
  1. Elevator Installers and Repairers: New York has the most skyscrapers in the U.S. and the second most in the world, behind only Hong Kong. Good news for elevator installers and repairers, who have a pretty decent occupational outlook anyway — the Bureau of Labor Statistics projects that their job will grow 13 percent between 2014 and 2024.
  • Relative Commonness: 4.4
  • Median Annual Pay: $73,000
  1. Editors: Editors do not have that same glowing occupational outlook (the BLS projects a 5 percent decline by 2024), but they do have more opportunity in New York, where their job is more than four times as common as the national average.
  • Relative Commonness: 4.3
  • Median Annual Pay: $55,000
  1. Actors: Los Angeles isn’t the only game in town for actors, who might make their bones in regional markets like Oregon or Louisiana — or focus on New York, which has a thriving television and film industry, as well as opportunities galore for theatrical actors.
  • Relative Commonness: 3.8
  • Median Annual Pay: $48,000
  1. Baggage Porters and Bellhops: New York’s tourism industry boasts arguably the best logo in the biz and nearly 60 million visitors per year. That’s a lot of luggage, which means that NYC porters and bellhops are always pretty busy.
  • Relative Commonness: 3.8
  • Median Annual Pay: $34,000
  1. Art Directors: Art directors create the look and feel of promotional and ad campaigns in magazines, web, and television and film. No wonder their job is more common in Mad Men-inspiring New York than in other areas of the country.
  • Relative Commonness: 3.3
  • Median Annual Pay: $91,000
  1. Makeup Artists, Theatrical and Performance: Actors and dancers and other performance artists need professionals to help them look the part; makeup artists make it happen.
  • Relative Commonness: 2.9
  • Median Annual Pay: $47,000
  1. Taxi Drivers and Chauffeurs: If you’re cruising for a nervous breakdown, bring your car with you the next time you visit NYC. Or skip it, and rely on a taxi drivers and chauffeurs, who are always in demand.
  • Relative Commonness: 2.8
  • Median Annual Pay: $48,000
  1. Historians: The highest paying job on this list is also probably the one you’d least expect. Historians, who often work for museums and visitor centers, as well as a variety of public and private institutions, find a home in New York.
  • Relative Commonness: 2.7
  • Median Annual Pay: $107,000
  1. Concierges: Which way is the subway? Where can you find a snack at 2 a.m.? How can you get tickets for Hamilton, or whatever the Hamilton of the moment happens to be? Just kidding: no one can answer that last question. In general, though, concierges know what’s up, and that’s why they’re twice as common in New York as anywhere else.
  • Relative Commonness: 2
  • Median Annual Pay: $36,000

Want more New York jobs? These six creative roles pay over $60,000 a year.

Do You Know What You're Worth?

Methodology: PayScale created this report based on common job titles in a specific region. Relative Commonness is a ratio of how common a job is in a specific region when compared to the national average. For example, a job with a relative commonness of “2.0” is twice as common in the region as it is nationally. Median pay is the national median (50th Percentile) annual total cash compensation.

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Jen Hubley Luckwaldt
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