Workamping - more jobs and where to look for them

ParkIt

Well-known member
Got a call Friday from the Farm Hire Group, they have had me on the list for this season but to start earlier. The incentive is pretty sweet but I'd have to start before our BC will be out of the shop (cap damage by a tow company) and they will pay to put me up in a hotel until our BC is fixed. Then I'd have to run back on a Sunday, pick it up, get it to the campgrounds, set it up then back to work 6AM the next day which would be a looooooong day.

There were a few people wondering what it would be like to work harvest and some new things have come up that might make it interesting for others if you have thought about giving it a shot:
Go online or to any Work Source center in your state and look up "H2A" listings. This gives you preference of hire plus a base pay of $12 an hour or if you exceed that, bin pay which is quite a bit better. They also pay half your transportation cost (half of your gas bill to and from your unit) and since it was new to our area, they will probably pay my lot space monthly since they pay housing which is usually a hotel/motel which is more expensive.

You do need to have a minimum of one month field experience, can haul 30-60lbs of fruit up and down ladders and work in up to 100º days though most farms won't have 'newer' hires work those days, only those with a minimum of 10 years will be allowed to work and it doesn't count against you. You also have to commit to the entire 'contract' though weather dictates when it starts and ends, some are just one month, some go from June until November. If you stay the entire contract there is a bonus if you exceed the $12 hour limit - that means if you fill a certain amount of bins per day that farmers need you get paid the bin rate which is higher and a percentage bonus that can add up to 8K if you work a 2 month or longer contract.

There are also the packing plants taking applications now as well so if you can stand for a full shift and sort on a belt, its a good way to get that one month under your belt but it usually pays minimum wage and there is no contract.

What I need to pay attention to in November is Amazon. They have had a "workamp" program going for a couple of years that I didn't know about, they are 8 miles from our house! Amazon sections off entire area for anything on wheels with full hook ups at no charge and pays up to $20 an hour for sorting/packing/shipping for the holiday season. They actually prefer us "older" folks because we have a work ethic a lot of kids don't. Can't recall all their locations at the moment but you can apply now to be part of the holiday workamp crew, it's also listed on the "H2A" sections for each state and I imagine more companies will be doing that this year as well since Amazon has proven its less expensive with less screw ups by hiring us. They know we don't want to stay past the holiday season, this bodes well for those looking to full time and have an income where you want to be.

Anyway, that's all I have for now and hope I don't get called over to work before my son's wedding and the BC is out of the shop...the crummy weather is looking for a start at the end of June which would be perfect for me.
 

Speedy

Well-known member
I'm scheduled to start for Amazon in mid-September. Have a paid site already reserved in a nice small park 5 minutes from the distribution center in Campbellsville, KY. Looking forward to it even though it cuts into our Fall rally schedule quite a bit, but we need to recharge our savings for the winter. Once back in Bama then I'm going to find a temp job for part of the winter then maybe off to Texas Coastal Bend.
 

ParkIt

Well-known member
I'm scheduled to start for Amazon in mid-September. Have a paid site already reserved in a nice small park 5 minutes from the distribution center in Campbellsville, KY. Looking forward to it even though it cuts into our Fall rally schedule quite a bit, but we need to recharge our savings for the winter. Once back in Bama then I'm going to find a temp job for part of the winter then maybe off to Texas Coastal Bend.
Nice! I might look into that though the weather stays pretty warm and dry through the end of October in eastern Washington. Will check it out though, it would be nice to start heading south earlier this year.
 

ParkIt

Well-known member
Update may 29 for central washington

After keeping in touch with the farms, Work Source and the state Agriculture department there is one orchard that has been trying to get more Workampers on their fields and sorting facility. They placed an ad on workampers.com but didn't get much response and were a bit baffled. It's Double M Orchards in Quincy and many other farmers are watching as more tree fruit fields are being planted annually and the labor pool dwindling. Some farmers have pitched in for mobile homes but it only gets used 5-7 months out of the year with local RV parks filling up on monthly spaces 6 months in advance so the cost isn't balancing out.
I rattled some cages, next week I'll head over to meet with two orchards and a few other folks to find out why they are only getting cherry pickers and packers instead of all fruits harvested. They don't like to break things up but some are, will be interesting to hear why some do and some don't.
This will be interesting and ongoing through the summer - for me its a great time to start my workamping since family and friends are close by and its a big vacation area then head south to warmer climates to visit other friends - its nice to have everyone spread out.

Wish me luck, our state has some outstanding places to workamp.
 
I think camping work is one of the great job we ever had, it's all time fun. You enjoy the working in the new places day and night it's all on the way to different places. Working in a group as camping it's really great.
 

danemayer

Moderator
Staff member
I think camping work is one of the great job we ever had, it's all time fun. You enjoy the working in the new places day and night it's all on the way to different places. Working in a group as camping it's really great.

Hi RebeccaWills,

Welcome to the Heartland Owners Forum. Glad to hear you're enjoying the RV life.
 

HappyKayakers

Well-known member
Amazon's Camperforce program only applies to Campbellsville KY, Coffeyville KS and Fernley NV. I worked last year in KY and will work this year in KS. Average pay is $10-$11. You might be able to work in one of the other fulfillment centers as a temp around the holidays but that wouldn't include camping. I think there's a current post on rv.net in their workamping forum from an Amazon recruiter.
 
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