How Much Does McDonald’s Pay Its Employees?

The following information will reveal what each McDonald’s job pays, the working hours, when and how you receive your paycheck, the break and lunch policy, and much more.

Mcdonald’s is a great opportunity to gain experience in the working world! For teens, adults, students, and seniors alike, it’s one of the most common jobs to apply for and get hired quickly.

So, how much does McDonald’s pay you for your time? As you read on, you’ll notice I’ve included many of the most common questions applicants ask before and after applying at McDonald’s.

What is the Starting Pay at McDonald’s?

What is the starting pay at McDonald's? Let's take a close look at the present pay and see what's in store for the future
McDonald’s’s pay is improving and the starting wage may increase substantially in the future to a living wage.

This is probably the most common question McDonald’s hiring staff hears. It’s interesting to know this fast-food chain recently announced in 2019 they would not oppose a federal minimum pay hike of $15.00 an hour.

However, as of this update, McDonald’s starts out their crew members at around $10.00 per hour. That’s actually not too bad compared to the $11.00 an hour starting pay at other jobs such as Lowe’s and Home Depot.

Taco Bell is actually offering approximately $12.00 an hour to start in some locations, so you may want to consider applying there.

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Mcdonalds Average Yearly Salary Needs Improvement

If we calculate an average full-time schedule of working 37 hours a week at a starting pay of $10/hr., the yearly salary would be $19,240. And that’s without any time off whatsoever.

If you look at this figure negatively, you’ll have a hard time appreciating this company for your hard work. However, you can look at it positively, too.

If you set a goal to move up in rank at your store and become a shift leader then an assistant manager, you can increase your yearly salary by a few thousand dollars.

This is because your hourly pay will be about $1.50 to $2.50 an hour higher and you’ll typically get more hours to work every pay period.

How many hours do you work at McDonald’s per week?

The average fast-food worker only works 25 hours or less every week for several reasons, such as:

  • The work is fast-paced, stressful, and tiring because you have to stand on your feet the whole time
  • Fast-food chains are more likely to hire more part-time employees than full-time
  • Employers have to continually hire new people and this puts a strain on scheduling shifts

Full-time McDonald’s workers have to work at least 30 hours a week and according to employee reviews on, they work anywhere between 60 and 80 hours per pay period (2 weeks).

How many hours is part-time at McDonald’s?

Part-time working hours at McDonald’s are usually anywhere between 15 and 30 hours a week. According to, The average hours reportedly worked per pay period by past and present workers were approximately 55 hours.

Officially, if you work less than 30 hours a week, you are considered a part-time employee at McDonald’s.

How do you call in sick?

At times, you will have no choice but to miss work due to illness. The policy for this company is to call your shift manager at least two hours before your shift begins. You cannot just send a text message.

Also, be aware that if you get caught calling in sick and you are not ill or you don’t have any type of emergency, you are subject to being fired.

What about maternity leave?

If you need a leave of absence due to maternity leave or for any other valid family or medical reason, you need to fill out a form and submit it to your superiors in advance.

Here are the average wages for the following McDonald’s restaurant positions:

McDonald’s crew member pay

You start out somewhere around $10.00 an hour. This depends on your location and whether your store is either franchise-owned or owned by the corporation.

The average pay for this position is currently about $10.45/hr.

Cashier salary

The average pay for this job is approximately $11.20 an hour after a couple of years. Keep in mind this job requires much more than just attending to the cash register.

You will likely be trained in most aspects of how the restaurant runs so you can easily substitute for another worker during critical times when the store is busy or no one else is available for a certain position.

Next, let’s take a look at management positions.

McDonald’s shift lead salary

This job comes with an average hourly wage of approximately $11.15 an hour. The responsibilities for this job differ from the assistant shift manager’s job in that you will be leading your crew members and ensuring customer satisfaction. The yearly salary averages around $23,192.

McDonald’s shift manager salary

You can expect to make about $12.00 an hour to start at this position which translates into $24,960 in salary during your first full year at this position. This position is different from the shift lead position because it carries a different responsibility such as overseeing the budget and inventory.

Assistant manager salary

On average, McDonald’s assistant managers make $37,500 a year. The salary range is roughly $24,500 to $56,200 a year. The shift manager will report to you and you will report to the manager.

Manager salary

Even though the salary varies according to the location and due to more than 90% of McDonald’s being franchise-owned, here are the salary figures:

  • Salary range = $39,500 to $57,000 a year and sometimes more, in franchise-owned stores
  • Average salary = $47,500 a year

McDonald’s Overnight Shift Hours

If your particular store is open 24 hours, you will have an overnight crew, including team members and management. Most McDonald’s have different needs for staffing their stores during the early morning hours. So, oftentimes, these shifts will vary.

Here are the typical hours for these shifts you can use as a starting point:

  • 6:00 p.m. to 2:00 a.m. or 3:00 a.m.
  • 8:00 p.m. to 5:00 a.m.
  • 10:00 p.m. to 6:00 a.m.
  • 11:00 p.m. to 7:00 a.m.

McDonald’s Break Policy

You can get the latest published employee handbook here to give you much information on what’s expected from you.

The break policy says you can:

  • Get a 30-minute break if you are working for 3 1/2 hours
  • If you’re a minor, you have to take a break for 30 minutes before the first 4 1/2 hours of your shift
  • You have to clock out before you take your break
  • If management asks you to come back early from your break due to any unusual circumstance, you will click back in and get another 30-minute break later, before the shift ends

Here are other commonly asked questions:

Does McDonald’s pay weekly?

No, but due to McDonald’s having many independent franchise store owners, most have their own way of paying their employees every two weeks or twice a month.

The most common way for McDonald’s to pay their employees is as follows:

  • On a Friday after the two-week pay period ends on the previous Saturday
  • The 5th and 20th of every month
  • And the 15th and 30th of every month

When do you get your first paycheck at McDonald’s?

It depends on what your starting date is and where you are in the current pay period. For example, if you started on a Friday and the pay period ends the next day on Saturday and you work both of those days, you will get paid the following Friday for those two days worked.

However, all the days you work after Saturday are counted towards your next paycheck until the next pay period ends. Then, you will get paid again two Fridays from the last one.

What time does McDonald’s pay you?

Unfortunately, every store has its own method of paying their employees, including what time they pay. There is no standard method.

So, the most common times reported were:

  • Just after midnight (12:01 a.m.) on the payday such as a Friday
  • 2:00 a.m. on payday
  • 6:00 a.m. to 7:00 a.m.

How does McDonald’s pay you?

They prefer to pay you through direct deposit. If you don’t have a bank account, they issue you a temporary Visa card until you can get a new bank account.

Alternatively, some stores give actual paper checks (paychecks).

When do you get a raise at McDonald’s?

McDonald’s doesn’t have one set rule on how to give out raises. Each store differs but the following examples and points to consider should give you an idea:

  • Every 6 months
  • When they review your yearly performance
  • If your managers believe you deserve a raise after every year
  • Some workers say they didn’t receive a raise even after 5 years

The bottom line is this; nobody is going to work for a company that does not reward its employees. You should not, either.

Be aware that some people who say they never got raises most likely didn’t perform their job very well or they weren’t dependable employees.

Here are some simple tips to make sure you don’t get stuck without a raise for your hard work at McDonald’s:

  1. During the application process, ask if your particular store gets raises for good performance.
  2. Either before or after you get hired, ask someone who’s already working or has worked there and see if they have any information on whether people have gotten raises at that store.
  3. Work hard and be a dependable employee.
  4. Set your sights on moving up to a management position before you even get hired!

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