Salaried employees receive a set pay typically per year and occupy professional and managerial roles. Workers in the hourly ranks can often accumulate as much as some of their salaried counterparts. Here, we profile ten of the best paying hourly jobs. Those that made our cut have an annual mean pay above $50,000. While the highest paid in these occupations approach $100,000 or more.

10. Plumber

The plumber job makes our roster of best paying hourly jobs with mostly four-to-five year apprenticeships and 2,000 hours of on-the-job training. Meanwhile, demand for these workers is expected to rise by 75,200 through 2026. That will result from new construction and upgrades in older buildings.

What does a plumber, pipefitter, and steamfitter do: Installation, repair, inspection, and maintenance of the systems that allow for the flow of liquids, gases, and other materials are the responsibilities of these workers. In installation jobs, they choose piping material based on building codes and the type of structure in which the system will go. Tasks also include troubleshooting such as detecting leaks and inadequate flow.

What annual salary a plumber has: The mean hourly pay for plumbers registers at $27.44, meaning $57,070 per year. Meanwhile, the pay among those in the 90th percentile climbs north of $91,810.

9. Physical Therapy Assistant

The physical therapy assistant has among the highest projected growth among our best hourly paying jobs. By 2026, the field could have an additional 42,700 positions or a 30 percent rise. This comes from a greater occurrence of diabetes, traumatic events, and strokes. And from the need for assistance to help these patients regain mobility.

What does a physical therapy assistant do: With supervision from physical therapists, assistants shepherd patients through exercises and the uses of canes and walkers. Other tasks include massages, stretching and educating patients and their families on exercises and other recovery tips. Also, the assistant records results and progress for the physical therapist.

What annual salary a physical therapy assistant has: A physical therapy assistant makes $27.70 per hour, meaning an annual salary of $57,620. Meanwhile, the top ten percent of earners make over $79,380. For a similar position, read about the massage therapist job description as well.

8. Occupational Therapy Assistant

Occupational therapy assistants follow the theme of highly-demanded healthcare workers. Arthritis, strokes and other conditions common in an increasingly elderly population drives a growing need for occupational therapy. The aims of occupational therapy are assisting with exercises, facilitating role play and other therapies, as well as educating patients and families with devices.

What does an occupational therapy assistant do: Patients rely on the services of these professionals to be able to eat and perform other daily functions. The assistants assemble and prepare the equipment used in therapy, take patients to various destinations, as well as schedule appointments.

What annual salary an occupational therapy assistant has: These assistants enjoy earnings of $28.59 per hour or $59,470 per year. Meanwhile, pay exceeds $80,320 for those in the 90th percentile of earners.

7. Aircraft Mechanics and Service Technicians

Aircraft mechanics and service technicians win strong enough wages to make our best paying hourly jobs list. However, trends in job growth may not prove as healthy. Since airlines may outsource aircraft maintenance and service to private providers. The occupation should see only 6,400 additional jobs by 2026, or a five percent increase

What does an aircraft mechanic and service technician do: Ensuring that planes are airworthy represents the essence of an air mechanic and technician job. These workers inspect, maintain and repair landing gear, engines, electrical systems, wings and other parts of the plane.

What annual salary an aircraft mechanic and service technician has: The median hourly pay stands at $30.07, while the yearly pay is at $62,540 for aircraft mechanics and service technicians. At the 90th percentile, salaries run above $92,080.

6. Boilermakers

Jobs such as boilermakers appear on the best paying hourly jobs list because of the solid mean pay. Apprenticeships in this field, as with many skilled workers on our list, lead ultimately to full-time work, especially in union shops. This adds to the potential for high wages for boilermakers. The labor force should see 9 percent more boilermakers by 2026, about as much as the average for other occupations.

What does a boilermaker do: The job description entails the assembly, repair, installation and upkeep of boiler systems that apply significant pressure to heat liquids. Boilers appear in breweries, oil refineries, power plants and other large industrial settings. Boilermakers must possess good skills in welding, aligning and fitting parts of boiler systems.

What annual salary a boilermaker has: Boilermakers have a median salary of $30.30 per hour, meaning $63,010 per year, with one out of ten ascending above $87,160.

5. Magnetic Resonance Imaging Technologists

An associate’s degree suffices to land jobs for most magnetic resonance imaging technologists. With the emphasis on accurate and informed diagnosis of medical conditions, technologists will experience many opportunities to attain the high wages that accompany this occupation. Employment should rise by 5,000 through 2026 over the 36,600 who held these jobs in 2016.

What does a magnetic resonance imaging technologist do: These technologists operate magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) scanners to create diagnostic images and record data and other information. MRI technologists aid in the procurement of images for doctors to diagnose fractures, diseases, and other conditions. Patients receive dye injections, instructions, comfort and monitoring during imaging sessions. These MRI images are read by radiologists.

What annual salary a magnetic resonance imaging technologist has: This occupation earns a spot among our best paying hourly jobs for the median salary of $33.89 per hour. While the annual pay is at $70,490.

4. Registered Nurse

Registered nurses attain high pay mostly due to a combination of their skills, having to work irregular shifts and their bachelor’s education. An associate’s degree or even a nursing diploma program, combined with work experience, can lead aspiring registered nurses to positions with significant earnings. While employment should rise by 438,100 through 2026.

What does a registered nurse do: A registered nurse’s tasks consist of observation, administering medications and treatments, and assisting with patient evaluations. Also, they need to educate patients and their families on topics such as post-recovery care and pain management. Registered nurses may specialize in medical fields such as cancer treatment, geriatrics, and cardiovascular health.

What annual salary a registered nurse has: Registered nurses fetch an hourly wage of $34.14, with an annual pay of $71,000. Those in the top ten percent of earners reach more than $101,630 per year.

3. Dental Hygienist

The dental hygienist job ranks among the best paying hourly jobs and the most sought after according to projections. Meanwhile, by 2020, the field could experience a 20 percent increase in hiring, or 40,900. Entry into the potential for healthy hourly pay and salaries originates typically through an associate’s degree program in dental hygiene.

What does a dental hygienist do: Clean teeth come courtesy of the efforts of hygienists in removing plaque and tartar, polishing teeth and administering mouth rinse. Moreover, hygienists may x-ray patients’ teeth, record the condition of teeth and educate patients on proper oral care.

What annual salary a dental hygienist has: On a mean basis, dental hygienists can earn up to $35.31 per hour. While the annual pay stands at $73,440.

2. Elevator Installer and Repairer

This job is one of the best paying hourly jobs because the top earners climb well into the six figures. Becoming an elevator installer and repairer involves an investment of 4 years as an apprentice, technical education, and 2,000 hours of on-the-job training. Employment should rise by 12 percent, meaning 2,700 new jobs by 2026.

What does an elevator installer and repairer do: These workers assemble, install and connect to electrical systems escalators and elevators. While inspections and repairs require them to work with cables, motors, doors, control panel, emergency switches and structure of elevators and escalators.

What annual salary an elevator installer and repairer has: The elevator installer and repairer gets paid about $37.08 per hour, meaning $77,130 per year. While those who occupy the top one-tenth of earners make around $115,880 each year.

1. Nuclear Medicine Technologist

Nuclear medicine technology offers the prospects of a healthy average pay and potential for six figures at the upper end of the pay scale. While the need for treating cancers and diagnosing potentially serious medical conditions supports a strong demand for nuclear medicine technology.

What does a nuclear medicine technologist do: To facilitate diagnostic images or therapy, nuclear medicine technologists prepare and administer radioactive medications. The radioactive properties of these medicines allow scanners to capture and physicians to see organs, tissues, and tumors. Technologists also provide targeted treatments for tumors.

What annual salary a nuclear medicine technologist has: These technologists enjoy a median salary of $37.33 per hour, meaning $77,660 per year. While for those landing in the 90th percentile, earnings rest at $103,660.


High-paying hourly jobs come from many settings where the workers acquire skills and often a community or technical college-level education. Those who enter these best paying hourly jobs in many cases enjoy solid prospects for finding work along with pay that can run up to or even above $100,000. Please share your thoughts in case you know any other hourly jobs you know that pay very well.