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Working Below Freezing: The 10 Coldest Jobs in The World

Alaska, America

From the Ice Truckers of America to the Ski Instructors on Europe’s award-winning slopes, a new study uncovers the 10 coldest careers in the world. These require workers to withstand temperatures that can plummet down to -39°C during their shift. Meet the people with freezing cold shifts and discover the careers that are based firmly below freezing.

Even those who live in the coldest corners of the planet have to get up and go to work every morning. With frostbite being a risk to health when skin is exposed to temperatures of -28°C and below in just 30 minutes or less, working below freezing can cause serious harm.

Crystal Ski have searched the globe to find out where to find the coldest jobs, the average temperatures work is conducted in, the cost of rent in the area and their salaries. It suggests that working below freezing can pay off with 58% of the salaries paying above the average amount, with one earning a staggering $69,900. If you don’t mind the cold, it may be time to change career and location.

From Gold Miners to Hazmat Specialists, here’s where you can find the jobs that require staff to work in painfully low temperatures between -2°C and -39°C.

Top 10 Coldest Jobs:

  1. Chief Technologists in Verkhoyansk and Yakutsk, Russia
    The coldest job is Chief Technologists in Verkhoyansk and Yakutsk, Russia. They work in temperatures that average at a numbing -39°C.  As mentioned, frostbite can occur on skin exposed to temperatures of -28°C but is this job worth the risk?  Yakutsk has the lowest winter temperatures of any city in the world and these Gold Mining specialists have a healthy salary of $57,108, although they do not earn the most of those studied.

    Yakutsk, Russia
  1. Mining Officer in Yukon, Canada
    Mining Officers in Fort Selkirk, Yukon nab the spot in second place and work in bitterly cold -27°C temperatures, earning $50,000 a year.  Head to Canada if you are looking for a career in the cold as a shocking 40% of the world’s coldest jobs can be found here.
  1. Engine Installation Engineer in Heilongjiang, China
    At number three is Engine Installation Engineers. You may want to avoid China if you’re looking to profit from working in cold conditions as although placed highly in painful -26°C conditions, they earn only $17,403.  This is a shocking $51,501 less than the Hazmat Specialists who work in the same temperature of -26°C in Barrow, Alaska. And comparatively, they earn a painful 79.75% less than other engineers across China.
  1. Hazmat Specialist in Alaska, United States
    Hazmat Specialists in Barrow, Alaska earn the most of all the jobs studied with a salary of $68,904. This is a considerable 49.65% more than the country’s average salary for this role and $11,796 more than the coldest career. So, head to the United States if you’re hoping for a pay rise in 2019..if you can withstand temperatures of -26°C.

    Package Delivery Drivers in America also profit from the cold conditions as those based in Fraser, Colorado earn $39,672 per year, a pay packet 29.74% higher than the average while working at -10°C.  But this comes with a catch, they also spend the highest percentage of their salary on renting, a total of 43.86% on average.

  1. Mill Helper in Yukon, Canada
    Canada is home to Mill Helpers, who work in average temperatures of -24.5°C.  Earning over 15% less than the average in the area at $24,960 a year, and spending a great 38.36% of their income on rent, it is worth considering whether this role is worth the minus temperatures.

    Yukon in Canada
  1. General Labourer, Yellowknife, Canada
    Canada also makes 6th place with General Labourers who work in temperatures that can drop to -21.5°C. This role comes with a payslip of $43,848, a fair 7.04% above the national average.
  1. Airport Terminal Worker in Upernavik, Russia
    Those working in airport terminals in Upernavik work their shift in temperatures of -17°C and with a salary of $24,960. At 15.38% below the national average, it might be worth seeking a role elsewhere in Russia, escaping the breath-taking cold. Those in this job will also have a small amount disposable income as 28.59% of their salary is spent on rent.
  1. Truck Driver, Manitoba, Canada
    Truck Drivers in Winnipeg earn the second highest salary of those studied and earn on average $63,700, a staggering 45.05% more than the same job in the area. Work here is conducted in -16°C temperatures.

    Majestic polar bears, Manitoba, Canada
  1. Outdoor Instructor in Lapland, Finland
    Outdoor Instructors in beautiful Lapland can earn a boastful 25.29% above the national average with a healthy salary of $41,760. Although temperatures can dip to -13.5°C, the great pay and idyllic surroundings may tempt you to brave the cold.

    Pallas-Yllastunturi National Park, Lapland, Finland
  1. Ski Instructor in Mont-Tremblant, Quebec, Canada
    Even doing vigorous exercise, it would be hard to stay warm in temperatures of minus 11.5°C. Ski Instructors in Canada have to balance the cost of living in this climate as although they earn $23,573, these seasonal workers have to allocate one of the highest percentages of their income to rent, dedicating an average of 38.69% of their salary on housing.

    Mont-Tremblant, Quebec, Canada

If you would like to see the full graphic, click here. With the full 12 salaries averaging at $40,824.58, would you work below freezing?

Have you read?

# World’s Best Countries To Invest In Or Do Business.
# Most Expensive Countries In The World To Live In, 2019.
# Global Passport Ranking, 2019.
# The World’s Safest Cities Ranking.
# Most Startup Friendly Countries In The World.

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Chris Logan
Chris Logan is managing director at Crystal Ski Holiday. It is one of the UK’s leading specialist tour operators with decades of experience delivering outstanding holiday experiences to the world’s best ski resorts in Europe and North America. Chris is a regular contributor to the CEOWORLD magazine.