If your best dreams consist of plump hot dogs, surfing in Malibu, and gearing up for the American football season, then you’ve probably wondered how to get a job in America from the UK. Specifically, you’ve probably wondered how you could get a summer job in America—and finally live out your summer dreams.
As a UK resident, working in America is not a far-fetched dream at all. If you’re a UK resident looking to work specifically through the summer months, you’ve come to the right place.
Every summer, American summer camps have 1.5 million job openings for those longing to live out their American dream summer. All you have to do is read below, then get your stars and stripes gear ready to hop over the pond, right past the Statue of Liberty, and into the United States.
Working in America: The Basics
Job opportunities for British people in America are easier to come by for one big reason—there is no language barrier.
With the one major advantage of speaking the same language, employment opportunities open up for UK workers looking to spend some time abroad. Now, the main obstacle between you and your American summer is a simple application through AmeriCamp.
For aspiring camp counselors, the application process is made easy by AmeriCamp. Let’s go through the eligibility, fees, and requirements for a UK citizen to gain employment as a camp counselor in America.
Eligible UK Applicants Must:
- Be 18 or older by May 1st of the program year
- Be proficient in spoken English
- Be able to supervise and interact appropriately with American youth
- Be a student, youth worker, or individual with specialized skills (such as team sports, water sports, arts + crafts, etc)
- Be experienced or interested in working with children ages 8-15 (and in camps with adults in some cases)
- Be enthusiastic and passionate about learning new customs and cultures
- Have no criminal history
- Provide a local background check
Program Requirements Include:
- Detailed application
- Background check
- Medical history
AmeriCamp’s Program Fees and Costs
To access AmeriCamp’s streamlined access to employment in America, candidates will need to pay a few fees.
There are four major components to these fees:
- DS-2019 Form
- Health Insurance
These fees can differ, and they are determined by your local AmeriCamp partner representative. Fees are often based on country, market exchange rate, and level of service offered by the partner (including job interview skills, classes, job training, etc.)
What UK Residents Need to Work in America
In order to legally work in America, a UK Resident must take the steps to acquire a visa, permit, or resident status.
Each route has its own intricacies, but the J-1 visa is substantially easier to acquire than a Green Card, which can take years of money and time investment.
When searching for how to get a job in America from the UK, the J-1 visa is likely the most direct and dependable route, especially when partnering with AmeriCamp, where the process is easier than ever before.
Temporary Employment Visa or J-1 Visa
Instead of going to the United States as a tourist, you’ll get to spend months working in the U.S. as a camp counselor and traveling. AmeriCamp is part of Intrax and since 2003 Intrax has been designated by the U.S. Department of State to sponsor J-1 visas and to issue the DS-2019.
When partnering with AmeriCamp, we’ll support you in getting your J-1 visa and complete the DS-2019 form. This form permits a prospective exchange visitor to seek an interview at a U.S. embassy or consulate in order to obtain a J-1 visa to enter the United States.
The DS-2019 Includes the following information
- Name of exchange visitor (aka you!)
- Designated sponsor (aka your US-based employer)
- Brief description of the exchange visitor’s program
- Start and end date
- Category of exchange
- Cost of exchange program
So, what does J-1 visa work permit look like? It will allow you receive pay comparable to U.S. citizens and get taxed and regulated with local, state, and federal labor regulations.
The J-1 visa processing time for your DS-2019 form can take around four weeks so make sure you are preparing earlier. Your sponsor will be reviewing your application, process your forms, and send the DS-2019 to your home address.
If you need this process to be faster, you can pay an optional expedited application processing fee to reduce this piece of the J-1 visa application time.
What It’s Like to Work in US
If you’re looking to start working in the US as a UK citizen, it’s best to be prepared for the work culture of the United States.
While work cultures can vary greatly depending on the industry, there are a few things you can expect from working in the US as a British person.
US Company Work Styles
Like many other countries, the United States work culture has been undergoing a change in recent years. With flexible work, the internet, and the pandemic, U.S. based companies have changed the way they operate.
Some key differences between work life in the US and the UK include:
- Terms of Employment: While UK contracts are used to outline terms of employment to avoid disputes, US contracts are created “at will”
- Lunch Breaks: UK workers are offered an hour, whereas US workers have no federal laws requiring lunch and they often take less than thirty minutes
- Communication Style: UK workplace communications are more likely to require subtext, whereas US workers are typically more direct and communicative.
- Health Benefits: This is a major difference. UK healthcare is a supplemental benefit, whereas it’s a major deciding factor when choosing to work for a company.
- Holiday Breaks: Full-time workers are offered a minimum of 28 days leave, whereas US workers typically receive 8-11 federal holidays off.
Some of these differences might apply when you work at a summer camp.
Working as a Camp Counselor at an American Summer Camp
Working as a camp counselor is a much different experience than working in an American office. A typical day at a summer camp starts around 7:00 am, when a camp counselor gets ready to awaken their campers for a day of adventure and activities.
Rather than spending a day typing under fluorescent lights, camp counselors spend the entire day working almost exclusively outdoors. Camp counselors and campers spend their days swimming, hiking, horseback riding, and more.
To learn more about real experiences from camp counselors who worked with AmeriCamp, check out our blog. Counselors share their experience at camp, and what it was like to travel the United States after their life-changing camp experience.
- Laura’s AmeriCamp Experience: Learn how Laura’s summer was just like the typical American summer camp experience—”but 1000x better”.
The best summer camps in the United States are all across the country in both urban and rural areas. Types of camps include:
- Private camps: privately owned and run by individuals or families
- Non-profit camps: owned or run by a nonprofit
- Special needs camps: dedicated for children and adults with disabilities
- Themed camps: focused on a sport or activity
- Religious camps: with a focus on a religion or religious philosophy
- Day camps: open only during daytime hours
Vacations, Time Off, and Holidays in the United States
The United States also has annual holidays that are observed federally and from organization to organization. The holiday season typically ends the year, with employees receiving a few holidays off work between Christmas and New Year’s Day.
Typically, Americans are given two weeks of paid vacation when working in a full-time, salaried position within an organization. Federal holidays observed in the US include New Year’s Day, Martin Luther King Jr. Day, Washington’s Birthday Memorial Day, Juneteenth, Independence Day, Labor Day, Veterans Day, Thanksgiving, and Christmas.
If you’re working in the United States during the summer months, you might experience one of these four summer holidays:
- Memorial Day honors the men and women who died while serving in the U.S. military. Memorial Day falls on the last Monday of May.
- Juneteenth commemorates the emancipation of enslaved people in the U.S. Juneteenth falls on June 19.
- Independence Day aka 4th of July celebrates the nationhood of the United States. Independence Day falls on July 4.
- Labor Day pays tribute to the achievements of American workers, and is unofficially known as the end of summer. Labor day falls on the first Monday of September.
Job Opportunities in America from the UK
Job Opportunities for UK residents in America are basically limitless, provided the applicant has the experience, skills, and requisite documentation needed to become employed within the United States.
As discussed, some job opportunities include camp counselor jobs in the best summer camps in the US. Camp counselor can make a minimum of $2,000 through our program.
How to Find Summer Jobs in the US from UK
The months of June, July, and August are great times to live and travel within the United States. While some regions of the country can reach sweltering heat, many UK residents love to experience the summer sun and the classic summer activities that come alongside it!
One of the best opportunities for UK residents looking to take full advantage of the American summer is employment at a summer camp. Some of the best summer camps in the US specialize in a range of activities and specializations. AmeriCamp’s program can help an aspiring camp counselor find the perfect fit.
Specialized Summer Camps in the US Include:
- Sports summer camps
- Outdoor activity summer camps
- Performing arts summer camps
- Wellness and health camps
- Adventure summer camps
- Religious summer camps
- Mission-based summer camps
- Horse riding summer camps
With over 1.5 million job openings every summer, specialized US summer camps are a perfect fit for a wide range of talented individuals. If you’re a well-trained equestrian from Dartmoor, a horse riding summer camp is likely the perfect fit for your skills, experience, and for your passions.
Looking to Work in The US This Summer Camp Counselor?
With AmeriCamp, you can spend 9 summer weeks working and living in the best summer camps in the United States. Take the headache out of complicated visa applications and sponsorships. AmeriCamp will provide guidance on everything—from your pre-interview all the way through your last day exploring America.
Earn some of the highest salaries achieved by camp counselors. With over 900 incredible summer camps across the States, we are sure to have the perfect fit for your skills, interests, and passions.
Best of all? Your summer doesn’t have to end once the campers go home. Spend up to 30 days traveling the US after camp. See everything from New York to California!
If you’re looking to live your American dream summer, get in touch with our friendly team today!