How Old Do You Have to Be to Work at McDonald’s?

Interested in working at McDonald’s and unsure of the age requirement?

Here, you’ll learn the youngest age you can apply for a job at McDonald’s, the restrictions involved in the job, responsibilities within given roles, and the recommended roles for certain age groups.

How Old to Work at McDonald’s?

You must be at least 14 to get a job at McDonald’s.

McDonald’s hires from 14 years old upwards in every state. A work permit may also be required depending on your state and your age.

Experience will always help but isn’t required for a job at McDonald’s unless said otherwise. Your resume, work permit (if required), and proof of ID are all you need to be considered.

Typically, the younger you are the less likely you are to be filled in for a position at McDonald’s because of the restrictions around hazardous jobs – although they may be more lenient if they are severely understaffed.

Here’s a summary:

Candidate ageEligibility
Does McDonald’s hire 14 year olds?Yes, with restricted roles.
Does McDonald’s hire 15 year olds?Yes, with restricted roles.
Does McDonald’s hire 16 year olds?Yes.
Does McDonald’s hire 17 years olds?Yes.
Does McDonald’s hire 18 years olds?Yes.

Can You Work at McDonald’s at 14 Years Old?

Yes, McDonald’s hires 14-year-olds but with fewer roles to choose from.

You’re not legally allowed to take on responsibilities that may be considered hazardous, such as grilling, frying, or using the freezer or fridge. As a 14 year old, you will usually be confined to the cash register, serving customers their food, cleaning tables, burger dressing, and on/off loading goods.

Labor guidelines also state that 14 year olds aren’t legally allowed to work overnight, more than eight hours in a single shift, or more than 3 hours on a school night.

Work permits can be fairly easy to acquire. You’ll need a few things such as proof of age, social security, and a letter of consent from your parents.

Can You Work at McDonald’s at 15 Years Old?

Yes, McDonald’s hires candidates who are 15-years-old.

The laws surrounding what roles you can do at 15 are the same as 14.

Regarding working hours, both 14 and 15-year-olds are restricted from working more than 3 hours a day during school days, 8 hours a day during holidays/weekends, or starting work before 7 AM or after 7 PM.

Some stores can be strict in terms of hiring age, however. Since McDonald’s isn’t legally obligated to hire starting at 14, you may occasionally see 16 years old as the minimum.

Can You Work at McDonald’s at 16 Years Old?

Yes, McDonald’s hires at 16.

16-year-olds only have the additional option of undertaking a Barista position at McDonald’s.

Work hours for 16-year-olds may also be limited due to state laws, though this will vary depending on the state. For example, some states have a maximum of 40 hours during a school week or 48 hours on holidays.

Work permits are still required below the age of 18 and are instated by the secretary of labor for health and safety reasons.

Can You Work at McDonald’s at 17 Years Old?

Yes, McDonald’s hires at 17.

The same rules apply to both 16-17-year-olds.

Shift roles and hours are also limited due to state laws. Crew member, cashier, and barista are positions you’re allowed to work at 16 or 17.

Do McDonald’s Jobs Have Different Age Requirements?

Yes, certain roles only apply to older employees.

Most roles are restricted due to child labor laws which are in place for health and safety reasons. 18-year-olds are free to operate dangerous equipment, on the other hand.

More details on jobs below:

McDonald’s jobAge requirementAverage pay
Crew Member14+ years$12.97/hr
Cashier14+ years$12.61/hr
Barista16+ years$14.00/hr
Shift Manager18+ years$13.38/hr
Department Manager18+ years$13.96/hr
Janitor18+ years$14.54/hr
Cook18+ years$12.00/hr

Note: The average pay for McDonald’s jobs is sourced from Indeed and Glassdoor.

What Do McDonald’s Teen Jobs Involve?

  • McDonald’s Crew Member. Greet customers, take orders, prepare and serve food, and keep your area clean.
  • McDonald’s Cashier. Input customer’s requests through the till, handle cash, assemble orders in bags onto trays, and maintain a fast speed while doing so.
  • McDonald’s Cook. Prepare food for breakfast, lunch, and dinner, abide by food safety principles, and communicate with crew and cashier staff.
  • McDonald’s Shift Manager. Keep track and measure the progress of staff members, rearrange members for different roles, keep track of inventory, cleanliness, and quality of food, as well as plan ahead for the next shift.
  • McDonald’s Department Manager. Set specific goals and deadlines, Train members for food safety, manage inventory, make every area optimal and organized, and follow up with other managers and crew members.
  • McDonald’s Janitor. Mop, sweep, vacuum, and wipe up all floors, walls, and other hard top surfaces, also polish and pick up trash inside customer washrooms and dining areas.
  • McDonald’s Barista. Manage customer orders, sell coffees, prepare pastries, snacks, and keep your area as well as the coffee machine clean and in working order.

Do Different States Have Different Age Requirements?

No, the hiring age is the same across the US for McDonald’s.

The latest reports state that McDonald’s can be found in all 50 states with 13,341 locations across the US, all of which will likely hire at 14 years old.

However, individual hiring managers can change the store hiring age, only allowing those with more experience to be accepted for the job.

What Age Does McDonald’s Hire in Florida?

McDonald’s in Florida hires from age 14.

Florida labor laws have some differences regarding the work hours for 14/15 and 16/17-year-olds.

On School days on Fridays, weekends, and school holidays, 14-15-year-olds are permitted to work 40 hours a week and/or 8 hours per day. Otherwise, you’re limited to working 15 hours a week and 3 hours a day.

Between 16-17 years old, you’re capped at 30 hours a week and/or 8 hours a day during school days. During holidays or days when school does not follow, your hours are not limited.

What Age Does McDonald’s Hire in Texas?

Texas also hires at 14 for McDonald’s.

At 14 and 15, you can work between 7:00 AM and 9:00 PM if you’re in summer school. For 16 and 17-year-olds, work hours are not limited as stated in the Texas labor laws.

Another thing to note is, in the state of Texas, you must have a Texas food handler certificate if you’re applying for a job that involves touching foods.

What Age Does McDonald’s Hire in California?

California also hires starting at 14.

California’s child labor laws state that 14 is the minimum age requirement to apply for McDonald’s.

Anyone below 18 is restricted from responsibilities involving cooking or baking, operating machinery like grills and fryers, and also using the fridge and freezer.

Summary: At What Age Does McDonald’s Hire?

McDonald’s hires from 14 years and up in every state. Unfortunately, Crew Member and Cashier are the only roles considered for 14-15 years old.

Role restrictions and age requirements can change depending on the hiring manager. Positions for 18+ year-olds may involve a manager, cook, or janitor.

You can view all available positions and submit an application online at McDonald’s Careers.

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