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How Old Do You Have to be to Work at McDonald's?

Generally speaking, to get an entry-level job at McDonald's as a crew member, you must be at least 16 years old.  However, there are two types of McDonald’s restaurants -- company-owned locations and independently-owned franchises -- which means the hiring practices and policies vary.

In some locations, you can work at McDonald’s when you are 14 or 15 years old with a work permit. You will have to contact the location you are interested in to find out their policy on hiring age.

To work as a shift manager or closer at McDonald’s, you must be at least 18.

Teen Jobs at McDonald's and Age Requirements

Crew Member  (Hourly)

As a crew member at McDonald's, you are responsible for greeting customers with a smile, taking accurate food orders, preparing food, keeping the restaurant clean, ensuring items are well-stocked, and working with other crew members and managers to meet your shift goals.

Crew members are usually divided into kitchen, counter, and maintenance.

As part of the kitchen crew, you will be preparing the food and maintaining the company’s quality standards. You must keep the area clean and follow all safety and sanitation procedures.

As a counter crew member, you will be a cashier and the leader in reaching the restaurant’s sales goals via upselling and Mcdonald's menu recommendations. You will be greeting customers in the restaurant and in the drive-thru, taking orders, and processing payment.

You must be at least 16 years old to work as a crew member at McDonald's.

Shift Manager  (Hourly)

Being a shift manager at McDonald's involves a variety of tasks, including managing people, planning for each shift, monitoring performance, taking action to help the team meet company standards and goals, monitoring safety and security, and communicating with other shift managers.

You will be responsible for food safety, communication, inventory management, daily maintenance and cleanliness, scheduling, training, and exceptional customer service.

To work as a shift manager at McDonald's, you must be at least 18 years old.

Closer  (Hourly)

A closer at McDonald's is responsible for staying late (sometimes past midnight) to complete nightly cleaning duties. You will  sweep, mop, and scrub floors, clean the equipment, and reset the store layout for the next business day. You will also be responsible for food and drink preparation. You must have good time management skills, self-motivation, and the ability to multitask.

You must be at least 18 years old to be a closer.

Can a 15 Year Old Work at McDonald's?

Depending on the location, 15-year-olds can work at McDonald’s with a work permit. We do have a page on our website specifically for 15-year-olds that you can view for more options.

Can a 16 Year Old Work at McDonald's?

Yes. 16-year-olds can work at any McDonald’s location. We have a page on our website specifically for 16-year-olds that you can also view for more options.

How Much Does McDonald's Pay Part-Time Workers?

The hourly earnings for employees at McDonald's vary because of state and city minimum wage laws. However, we can give you a general idea of what the hourly pay is for each position.

Crew Member (Hourly)

As a crew member at McDonald's, you will be making somewhere between minimum wage and $15 per hour. If this is your first job, then you will most likely start at minimum wage.

The average hourly rate for a McDonald's crew member is $8.

Shift Manager (Hourly)

The rate of pay for shift managers is between $8 and $21 an hour. If you have some prior work experience, you can negotiate an hourly pay rate higher than minimum wage.

The average hourly rate for a McDonald’s shift manager is $10.

Closer (Hourly)

The pay range for closers at McDonald's is between $8 and $10 an hour. If you have some experience, you will have a starting wage at the higher end of the range, but if this is your first job, you will most likely be at the lower end.

The average hourly rate for a closer is $9 an hour.

How Much Experience Do You Need to Work at McDonald's?

McDonald's is an entry-level friendly company, and known for being America’s, “best first job.” So, you can apply for a position without any experience and get hired as a crew member. However, if you do have some work experience, it could get you a higher, hourly pay rate and move you faster into supervisory and management positions.

What Should You Wear to a Job Interview at McDonald's?

McDonald's is a popular fast food chain, so when you show up for your interview, you will want to be dressed in business casual attire.  Consider something like a buttoned-down shirt with nice slacks and dress shoes. You do not want to show up too casual in a t-shirt and jeans.

McDonald's Interview Questions

The possible questions in a job interview are endless, and it always depends on the interviewer. But, there are some common questions that they do often ask. At a McDonald's interview for a crew member position, they are usually extremely quick. They know you probably don’t have a lot of work experience, so their questions usually focus on your skills and availability.

Can you work in a fast-paced environment?

Why are they asking?  

As one of the most iconic brands on the planet, we all know about McDonald’s. Their restaurants are constantly busy. Traditional restaurants usually have, “rush hours,” during breakfast, lunch, and dinner. McDonald’s can be busy 24/7. They are asking you this question to find out if you can handle that kind of work environment.

What’s the ideal answer?

The interviewer wants to hear that you can work well in a fast-paced environment, and would rather be busy instead of standing around.

Are you okay with cleaning the bathrooms?

Why are they asking?  

Let’s be honest, there are some parts of an entry-level job at a fast food restaurant that are not fun or glamorous. One of the worst parts is usually having to clean the bathrooms, and it will probably get nasty from time to time. They are asking you this question to find out if you are okay with that.

What’s the ideal answer?

The ideal answer to this question is yes. You need to be okay with that part of the job. You are not going to have the option of passing on that task if you get hired.

What job skills do you have?

Why are they asking?  

If a manager asks you this question, they are trying to get you to sell yourself. Part of your job as a crew member is upselling to McDonald's customers. They are wanting to find out how well you can communicate, while being positive and professional.

You may not have any previous work experience, but you can still have skills like communication, time-management, money-handling, etc...

What’s the ideal answer?

Know your strengths. If you get asked this question, tell them how you will benefit their business. They want to hear that you have good verbal communication skills, have a friendly and upbeat demeanor, and can give good customer service.

Tell them that you are a reliable worker who will show up to work on time for every scheduled shift. And, if you are interested in a long-term career with the company, definitely let them know.

Benefits of Working at McDonald's

Everyone who works at McDonald's gets a free meal each shift.  However, the benefits they offer are for full-time workers only.

Benefits include:

  • Paid time off and paid sick days
  • Performance Bonuses
  • Vacation
  • 401K and Employee stock purchase plan
  • Health, Dental, and Vision Insurance
  • Maternity and paternity leave
  • Flexible schedules

What it’s Like to Work at McDonald's

How to Apply at McDonald's

If you are interested in working at McDonald's, you can apply directly on the company website. However, because each restaurant has different hiring policies and practices, it is best to contact the location you are interested in working at to find out the best method for submitting your application. If it is a locally-owned franchise, they may have a separate website for you to fill out an application, or they may prefer that you fill out an application in-person at the store.

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