Does Trader Joe’s Hire at 14, 15, or 16 Years Old? (Full Guide)

In the United States, there is a legal working age, which in most states is typically around 14. There are definitely grocery stores and other places that will hire you as soon as you are legal to start working.

So, if you are planning on getting into the working world and want to start at Trader Joe’s, you might be wondering if you are at a qualifying age. If so, keep reading to find out!

Does Trader Joe’s Hire at 14, 15, or 16 Years Old In 2024?

Trader Joe’s does not hire applicants who are 14 or 15, but begins hiring employees at 16 for some entry-level jobs in 2024. Trader Joe’s employees carry a big responsibility to make sure customers are having a fun, warm, and friendly shopping experience every time they come into a store.

To find out more about the minimum age to work at Trader Joe’s, and which other stores hire teens, keep reading for more facts!

At What Age Does Trader Joe’s Hire?

To work at Trader Joe’s in an entry-level position, you need to be at least 16 years old.

There is nothing stopping you to apply before you are 16, but unfortunately, you will not be hired.

What Position Can Teens Apply for at Trader Joe’s?

There are 2 positions that you can apply for when you apply at 16- Store Crew and Mate. The responsibilities of both positions are as follows, so let’s start with Store Crew.

The Store Crew’s main job is to provide excellent customer service by sharing about products, giving suggestions, answering questions, and showing customers where certain products are.

As a Mate, you will be a member of the management team and are responsible for delivering exceptional products and experiences to customers.

Of course, all positions at Trader Joe’s are required to offer a fun and friendly shopping experience.

How Much Do Trader Joe’s Employees Make?

Employees at Trader Joe’s make between $13.68 to $25.03, depending on which position they are working in.

It doesn’t come as a surprise that those who are working in a management position will make more than those who are working in entry-level positions.

To get into a higher position while working at Trader Joe’s, you may want to consider learning every position and working up from there.

How Do You Apply for a Job at Trader Joe’s?

How Do You Apply for a Job at Trader Joe’s?

Start by looking online to see if the location you want to work at has any positions available, then submit a resume online or in person.

Next, you will just sit back and begin your wait for a manager to call you. If you’re called back, the manager will set up a time that works to do an interview.

If you have applied online, you can be sure that you will be waiting for about 3 weeks to hear back.

Trader Joe’s requires you to do 2 in-person interviews before you will be hired.

What Questions Might You Be Asked at an Interview at Trader Joe’s?

Trader Joe’s interview questions are similar to other jobs you will have applied for.

You should expect to answer questions about strengths, weaknesses, conflict resolution, favorite items, previous employers, and why you want to work at Trader Joe’s.

You should also be prepared to answer questions about things like your food, and even your sense of humor.

What Should You Wear to an Interview at Trader Joe’s?

In order to have a higher chance of getting hired, you will want to be dressed correctly. Applicants should dress casually but appropriate for the job that they are applying for.

If you want to stand out, be sure to show your creativity, but keep in mind that you should still dress as though you are headed in for a job interview.

You should be sure to do your best in trying to make a good impression.

Which Other Places Hire Before 16?

Even though Trader Joe’s doesn’t hire employees before the age of 16, there are a lot of other grocery stores, fast food restaurants, etc that will hire starting at the age of 14.

Some of these places include:

  • Arby’s
  • Burger King
  • Baskin Robbins
  • Kentucky Fried Chicken
  • Ben and Jerry’s
  • Dairy Queen
  • Culver’s
  • Rita’s Italian Ice
  • Bruster’s Real Ice Cream
  • Boston Market
  • Chick-Fil-A
  • McDonald’s
  • Pizza Hut
  • Giant Eagle
  • Hy-Vee
  • Giant Food
  • Kroger
  • Publix
  • Winn Dixie
  • Safeway
  • King Soopers
  • Stop & Shop
  • Fareway
  • AMC Theatres
  • Six Flags

If none of those places appeal, other jobs you might want to try when you are 14 are as follows:

  • Babysitting
  • Pet sitting
  • Dog walking
  • Lawn mowing
  • Car washing
  • House cleaning
  • Being a task runner

There is plenty of other freelance work that you can get into as well.

To learn more, you can also read our posts on whether or not Trader Joe’s drug test, Trader Joe’s dress code, and who makes Trader Joe’s food.


Trader Joe’s does not hire anyone who is 14 or 15, as the minimum age requirement for the company is 16. Although Trader Joe’s doesn’t hire under 16, there are plenty of other companies around the United States that are happy to hire 14 and 15 year olds.

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Cara Suppa

Cara Suppa has been freelance writing for over a decade and holds a BA in English and an MS in Integrated Marketing Communications. Outside of work, she is an avid cook, gardener, and discount shopper.

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