Starting Your Fast-Food Career: McDonald’s Hiring Age and More

McDonalds Age Requirement

Hello there, job seekers! Whether you’re just stepping into the workforce or seeking a new opportunity, McDonald’s, one of the world’s largest fast-food chains, may have popped up on your radar. But you might be wondering, “At what age does McDonald’s start hiring?” Well, let’s dive right into it.

Decoding the McDonald’s Minimum Age Requirement

A quick heads up: The minimum hiring age can vary by location and position due to local labor laws and specific job requirements.

So, Can a 13-Year-Old Work at McDonald’s?

Although many teenagers start looking for their first job around this age, most McDonald’s locations require employees to be at least 14 years old.

The Door Opens at 14: McDonald’s and 14-Year-Olds

Yes, some McDonald’s locations do hire 14-year-olds. In states like Alaska, Illinois, and Kansas, where labor laws permit, 14-year-olds can work with restrictions on the number of hours and times of day they can work. Be sure to check with your local McDonald’s and state labor laws for specifics.

Welcome Aboard, 15-Year-Olds!

Yes, McDonald’s hires 15-year-olds! States like Colorado, Florida, and Massachusetts have labor laws that allow 15-year-olds to work, often with restrictions similar to those for 14-year-olds. Again, check with your local McDonald’s and state labor department to get the most accurate information.

Are 16-Year-Olds Eligible?

Yes, indeed! 16-year-olds often have more flexibility with hours and job duties at McDonald’s. They’re a common sight behind the counters!

And 17-Year-Olds?

You bet! McDonald’s hires 17-year-olds for a variety of roles, offering more opportunities as you age and gain experience.

What About More Mature Candidates? Say, 50-Year-Olds?

Of course! Age is just a number at McDonald’s. They hire workers of all ages, including those who are 50+ and looking for a fresh start or a part-time gig.

Other Must-Know McDonald’s Hiring Requirements

Besides age, McDonald’s looks at your ability to work in a team, your customer service skills, and your availability. They often require no previous work experience, making it an excellent place for a first job.

Exploring the Menu: Your Potential Job Roles at McDonald’s

Working at McDonald’s doesn’t just mean flipping burgers. The company offers a range of roles, each with its unique requirements and rewards. Here’s a taste of what you might find:

Crew Member

This is the most common entry-level position. As a Crew Member, you’ll handle tasks like taking orders, serving customers, and maintaining cleanliness. The age requirement can be as low as 14-15 in some locations, with pay typically around the minimum wage.


As a Cashier, you’ll be the face of McDonald’s, handling customer transactions and ensuring excellent service. The starting age and pay are usually similar to that of a Crew Member.


Cooks are the backbone of any McDonald’s restaurant, preparing the food that customers love. The starting age can vary, but it’s often 16 or older due to safety concerns, with pay slightly above the minimum wage.

Shift Manager

Shift Managers oversee the restaurant operations during their shift, from managing staff to ensuring customer satisfaction. This position typically requires you to be at least 18 and have some experience, with a higher average pay.

Restaurant Manager

A Restaurant Manager runs the entire restaurant, making sure everything operates smoothly. This position usually requires a high school diploma and several years of experience, offering a considerably higher salary.

Remember, these are just a few of the roles available at McDonald’s. Each role comes with its own opportunities for learning and advancement, making McDonald’s not just a job, but potentially a career.

Hiring Journey: From Application to Qualifications

McDonalds Store

The hiring process at McDonald’s includes an online application, an in-person or virtual interview, and potentially, a background check. You don’t necessarily need a high school diploma for entry-level positions, but it may be required for management roles.

McDonald’s Teen-Friendly Cities

Looking at the data, top cities where McDonald’s tends to hire teens include

  • Chicago
  • Houston
  • Los Angeles
  • New York
  • Phoenix

No Experience or Diploma? No Problem!

McDonald’s is known for hiring individuals with no prior work experience or a high school diploma. They provide training to help new hires learn the ropes.

The Perks of Being a McDonald’s Employee

If you’re considering McDonald’s as your next workplace, you’ll be delighted to know that it’s not just about the paycheck. The company offers a host of benefits designed to make your working experience as rewarding as possible. Here’s a breakdown:

Flexible Hours

One of the main attractions of a job at McDonald’s is the flexible scheduling. Whether you’re a student juggling classes, a parent managing a household, or someone balancing multiple jobs, McDonald’s can often accommodate your needs.

Tuition Assistance

In some locations, McDonald’s offers tuition assistance to eligible employees, helping them pursue further education. It’s a great way to continue your personal growth while working.


Working at McDonald’s means being part of a large, diverse community. You’ll have the chance to make new friends, work as part of a team, and engage with your local community.

Remember, benefits can vary by location and position, but these give a general idea of the perks you can expect when you join the McDonald’s family.

Remember, each of these companies, like McDonald’s, will have varying requirements based on the job position, location, and local labor laws. Be sure to check with each company directly to understand their specific hiring policies. Good luck with your job search!

How to Join the Golden Arches Family

Getting a job at McDonald’s involves filling out an online application, acing your interview, and showing your eagerness to learn. But what can you expect during the interview? And what are the working hours? We’ll cover these and more!

Tackling Your McDonald’s FAQs


Naturally, you may have a few questions about working at McDonald’s. Here are the answers to some of the most frequently asked ones.

Can I Work at McDonald’s Part-Time?

Yes, absolutely! McDonald’s offers flexible scheduling, making it a great option for students, parents, or anyone looking to supplement their income with a part-time job.

How Much Will I Earn Working at McDonald’s?

Your wage will depend on your position, location, and level of experience. As of my knowledge in June 2023, McDonald’s crew member’s minimum wage is approximately $12.62 hourly, with room for growth as you move up the ranks.

Do I Get Free Meals?

One of the perks of working at McDonald’s is the employee discount, which usually includes reduced-price or free meals during your shift.

What Kind of Training Will I Receive?

McDonald’s provides comprehensive on-the-job training. You’ll learn everything from food preparation to customer service skills. In some locations, you might also receive training for safety protocols and management skills.

Can I Progress to a Management Position?

Yes! McDonald’s is known for its career development opportunities. Many managers and even franchise owners started their careers as crew members. With hard work and dedication, you can climb the ladder!

Looking Elsewhere? Other Companies to Consider

While McDonald’s offers excellent career opportunities, you might be looking for different types of work or perhaps a different company culture. Here are a few other companies where teenagers and mature workers alike might find promising job prospects:


If you enjoy the aroma of coffee and the bustle of a café, Starbucks might be an excellent place to consider. They hire from 16 years old in most locations and offer benefits like tuition assistance and flexible scheduling.


For those interested in a fast-food environment with a focus on chicken, Chick-fil-A is a great place to look. They hire as young as 14 in some locations and provide comprehensive training to their employees.


The retail giant Walmart can be an excellent option for a diverse range of job opportunities. They often hire individuals 16 and up, and offer benefits like an associate discount and the opportunity for career advancement.


Another retail giant, Target, is known for its friendly work environment and commitment to employee growth. They typically hire starting at 16 and offer a variety of roles, from cashier to stockroom attendant.

Home Depot

For those more inclined toward home improvement, Home Depot is worth considering. Hiring age starts at 16 for most roles, and they offer benefits like tuition assistance, retirement plans, and employee discounts.

What it’s Like to Work at McDonald?

Wrapping It Up

So, that’s a brief overview of what you can expect when considering a job at McDonald’s. Whether you’re 14 or 50, with or without a high school diploma or previous experience, McDonald’s might be the perfect place for you to kickstart your career journey. Stay tuned for more in-depth insights into each of these topics!



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