14 High-Paying Jobs That can Actually Be Fun

Fun jobs can also pay well — you just need to find one that’s right for you.

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Updated May 28, 2024
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Is your job a drag? If so, maybe it’s time to find something more fun.

Don’t automatically assume that a “fun” job won’t pay well. You could find a role you enjoy that will also help boost your bank account.

If you’re in the market for a lucrative and fun job, consider the following options.

Note: All salary figures come from the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS).

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Sommelier

hedgehog94/Adobe senior man in suit checking out a wine bottle from the shelves

A sommelier is a wine expert who picks out the right wine to go with the best foods. They often work for a restaurant or winery.

Wages start out low, but a master sommelier can have a salary between $80,000 to $160,000.

To become a master, you may have to take an exam to prove you thoroughly understand the different types of wines you will be suggesting.

Art therapist

Robert Kneschke/Adobe senior man and nurse painting together

A job as an art therapist allows you to bring out your inner artist while helping others find healing.

You might be responsible for leading art classes or working with specific clients using different art mediums. You also might create programs that can help people in other ways.

The BLS does not keep specific salary data for art therapists specifically, but it groups them with other types of therapists who make a median salary of around $65,000. The top 10% make over $110,000 annually.

Pro tip: If your career has hit a wall, perhaps retraining for one of these roles might lead to success that can help you move beyond living paycheck to paycheck.

Chef

Andrii/Adobe young happy chef chopping vegetables in kitchen

If you enjoy cooking, becoming a chef might be a fun job.

Chefs typically work in a restaurant, but there can be other opportunities, such as working as a private chef for a specific client or preparing meals for a business.

Chefs make a median salary of around $56,000, with the top 10 percent making $91,000 annually.

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Film and video editor

VAKSMANV/Adobe young woman wearing a headset is working on a desktop computer in the dark

Film and video editors are responsible for piecing together video from a production and creating a cohesive product.

You might work as a movie or TV editor for films and shows. Or, you might put together online video productions for a company.

This position earns a median annual wage of more than $63,000, with the highest paid making over $166,000.

Event planner

DragonImages/Adobe banquet manager discussing table setting

Event planners pull everything together to create a great convention, party, wedding, or other major event.

To succeed in this career, you should be well organized and able to handle multiple issues when they arise. Many event planners feel great joy in seeing their plans come together successfully.

An event planner makes a median annual income of around $50,000. The top 10% make over $90,000 annually.

Fashion designer

Beaunitta V W/peopleimages.com/Adobe african american fashion designs working on laptop

Get involved with the fashion industry by designing clothes either as an independent designer or as an in-house designer with a fashion company.

Working as a fashion designer allows you to get creative and pays a median salary of around $77,000. The highest-paid designers make a salary of over $130,000.

Landscape architect

pressmaster/Adobe Landscape designers are discussing the layout of a model with blueprints in their hands.

If you enjoy working outdoors, consider a job as a landscape architect.

Creating a landscape that includes bushes, trees, flowers, and other plants can help the outdoor areas of parks, residential homes, and offices stand out.

Landscape architects make a median salary of around $73,000 per year, with the upper echelon making over $120,000.

Industrial designer

Gorodenkoff/Adobe mature engineer wearing glasses is using CAD while sitting in a chair at the office

Someone needs to design toys, appliances, and other products, so try your creative art skills as an industrial designer.

Industrial designers make a median salary of around $77,000 and use their creative skills to develop unique items for all kinds of uses. Some designers even create new cars.

The highest earners in the field can make over $125,000 per year.

Wildlife biologist

slowmotiongli/Adobe biologist holding a black skimmer with their hands

Animal lovers might consider a career as a wildlife biologist. These professionals study animals in the wild or research ways to protect them in their natural habitats.

Wildlife biologists might research a specific animal or habitat. For example, marine biologists often study fish and the water they swim in.

Wildlife biologists make a median salary of around $64,000. The highest earners bring in over $100,000.

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Interior designer

pressmaster/Adobe female interior designer explaining project on laptop to couple

Help people decorate their homes, offices, or other spaces as an interior designer.

For around $61,000 in annual income, you work with clients to pick out paint, furniture, or other interesting items that can make a space pop. 

If you reach the top of your field, you could make a salary of over $100,000.

Graphic designer

Jacob Lund/Adobe happy african american girl drawing graphics on tablet

Graphic designers work on signs, posters, brochures, or anything else that needs great visuals. Use your artistic skills to create and develop unique pieces to help clients stand out.

People in this job make a median salary of around $58,000, with annual wages reaching over $100,000 for top earners.

Astronomer

abriendomundo/Adobe man with with a huge telescope, staring at the sky during the night.

Have you ever stared up at the night sky in wonder? You might want to consider being an astronomer.

An astronomer studies the stars and other celestial bodies. You can even use a telescope as part of your job.

Astronomers make a median annual salary of around $128,000. The highest-paid astronomers bring in salaries of over $180,000.

Museum archivist

JRB/Adobe investigator in the record room going through records using a magnifying glass

A career as a museum archivist might be right for you if you love history.

Archivists can be responsible for cataloging and preserving important documents and other records. They make a median salary of around $56,000 and could command over $100,000 at the top of their field.

Detective

sebra/Adobe young woman dressed as a detective, looks through a magnifying glass

If you ever dreamed of becoming the next Sherlock Holmes, perhaps you should consider a career as a detective.

Detectives and criminal investigators are responsible for collecting evidence and talking to witnesses while trying to solve crimes.

Detectives usually work for law enforcement agencies and make a median salary of more than $83,000. The top 10% make just over $150,000 per year.

Bottom line

Drazen/Adobe happy african american woman raising hand in class

You can build a career that lets you have fun but also pays you well.

So, start thinking about what you want to do, including whether a new position will require additional training or time in school.

With the right planning, you can find a fun job that is so lucrative you might even find your way to early retirement.

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Author Details

Jenny Cohen

Jenny Cohen is a freelance writer who has covered a bit of everything, from finance to sports to her favorite TV shows. Her work has been featured in The Wall Street Journal, USA Today, and FoxSports.com.