Truck drivers and plumbers are among the British who have surprisingly well-paying jobs – as much as £150,000 a year.
The offers mean drivers earn more than head office staff at parent company John Lewis Partnership – including two senior executive positions advertised for £45,000 a year.
Waitrose offered the payment to try to address a 90,000 driver shortage.
The shortage has meant that McDonald’s no longer has a milkshake and some stores can’t stock beer.
The crisis has been caused by a combination of factors, including the Covid-19 pandemic and complications related to Brexit.
Waitrose said truck drivers’ salaries have risen 15 percent, or £7,000, in the past year and a half.
James Clifford, boss of driver trainers HGTV, said new recruits could earn up to £60,000 a year.
He told The times: “Truck drivers are treated like royalty. It’s a great time to be a truck driver. The numbers on offer are insane.
“Suddenly the truck driver has become the most valuable person in the company.
“Companies must do everything they can to keep their drivers: health care, more vacation rights, discount on goods, travel allowances to get to work.”
Meanwhile, Pimlico Plumbers is offering up to £150,000 in engineer salaries.
The company said the salary was a “realistic figure” due to an increase in bookings as more and more people are undertaking home improvement work they had suspended due to the Covid-19 outbreak.
Pimlico Plumbers chief executive Scott Mullins said: “From the moment lockdown restrictions were lifted and people realized they couldn’t spend their money on trips abroad, improving or repairing their homes became a priority. The phones rang. red hot.”
Pimlico engineers can earn £120 per hour during the week, while the rate goes up to £200 for nighttime jobs.
Pimlico’s biggest earner was making more than £200,000 a year before the pandemic.
The plumbing company employs about 300 workers and said up to a fifth of them could earn at least £150,000 by 2021.
Mr Mullins said he struggled to find staff skilled enough to fill the roles.
The songs on offer are crazy
James Clifford, Chief of Driver Trainers HGTV
He told the Daily mail: “If 50 experienced craftsmen walked through our door tomorrow, we would have them inducted right away, in uniform and in a Pimlico van.
“Unfortunately, it’s not that simple, because the number of engineers is unfortunately limited.”
Waitrose’s truck drivers will earn more than the average salary for secondary teachers (£40,880), lawyers (£43,190) and architects (£42,930).
The truck driver jobs are offered with a “wide range of benefits and a healthy work-life balance” – including 20 percent off at Waitrose and 25 percent off at John Lewis.
Aviation pilot Steve Freeman, 53, is retraining to be a truck driver after flying jets with the Royal Air Force for 12 years.
He said: “With the threat of losing my income and the job I love, along with the prospect of no other job opportunities…I found myself looking for completely different ways to pay the mortgage. .”
Other surprisingly high paying jobs include master sommeliers, who can earn around £120,000 a year, professional “snugglers” who earn up to £70 an hour giving people hugs, and Tube drivers – some of whom earn over £100,000.
Most Tube drivers earn a wage of around £60,000 to £70,000.
Professional beer tasters can earn up to £200 per hour, while experienced British dental hygienists can earn up to £43,000 per year.
Surprisingly well-paying jobs
- Submarine Boils – $187,000 per year in Australia (£116,000/year)
- Master Sommeliers – £118,000
- Aircraft repo men – £1 million per aircraft
- Professional Snuggler aka Cuddle Therapist – £70/hour
- Tube Driver – up to £100,000
- Ethical Hackers – £100,000
- Beer taster – £200/hour
- Embalmers – £34,000
- Offshore Oil Worker – £75,000
- Air traffic controller £100k (plus shift allowance)
- Dental Hygienist – £43k