Alaska is the largest state in the United States by area, located in the northwestern part of North America, and did not receive official status until 1959. The oil and gas and fishing industries are considered the most important sources of the region's budget and the sectors where most of the jobs, including those for foreigners, are concentrated.

Incidentally, northern Alaska is home to the largest oil field on the continent. Overall, the state produces about a quarter of all U.S. oil products, and seafood and fishing companies are considered some of the largest employers in the country.

Work in Alaska

There is a perception that jobs in Alaska are solely related to hard physical labor in fish factories. This is far from the case. The state's economy is quite diverse and migrant workers have plenty of additional employment opportunities. For example, jobs in Alaska for foreigners in 2024 are available in health care, tourism, transportation, mining and forestry.

Next, let's look at the features of labor migration and requirements for foreigners, ways to find a job, available jobs, and salaries in Alaska in 2024.

How to go to work in Alaska. Specifics of employment.

There are a lot of myths about labor migration to Alaska and there are many scammers who offer fabulous earnings, ideal working conditions, full range of intermediary services, help in preparing documents for relocation and so on. Carefully check the information and do not trust recruitment agencies, especially domestic ones. Use the services of such companies only with the help of friends and acquaintances, make your decision carefully, work in Alaska only legally and try to contact American companies directly.

Alaska is considered one of the least densely populated states, with just over 738,000 people living here in 2024. Much of the local workforce is highly skilled and able to fill most open positions. Moreover, every year hundreds of thousands of foreigners, even millions, seek to emigrate to the United States in any way they can, including employment, and Alaska is not the least popular state for job searches. Consequently, the competition for jobs in Alaska is quite impressive.

The federal structure of the USA means wide enough independence of separate states, nevertheless the questions connected with employment of foreign workers are fixed at a federal legislative level and require strict execution. The official work in Alaska assumes the preliminary search of the employer, conclusion of the labor contract and obligatory registration of the work visa. Ideal option for a foreigner in the future to get a Green Card in the U.S., allowing you to live and work freely in the country.

How to go to work in Alaska

The vast majority of applicants from third countries aim to find seasonal work in Alaska and the local labor market is generally favorable to this type of employment. As a rule, in this case temporary work visa H-2B or visa for qualified specialists H-1B is issued. In the first case the document is issued for a period of up to 1 year with an option to extend it for up to 3 years, and in the second case – for 3 years at once with an option to extend it for up to 6 years. There is a quota of 66,000 people per year for H-2B visas.

Alaska's unemployment rate is 4.5%, slightly higher than the national average. The economic growth rate is less than 1% per year. Accordingly, the number of available jobs is limited. To increase the chances of employment, which is not uncommon and is a prerequisite for obtaining a work visa, you will need a degree and sufficient experience in the specialty. Even for unskilled work in Alaska it is very important to have a good command of English.

Pay special attention to the climate and cost of living in Alaska. The most comfortable and warm weather is in the South East of the state (Juneau), moderate weather in the South (Anchorage), colder climate in the central part (Fairbanks), in the North absolutely severe weather, where the temperature rarely rises above zero. Food costs, housing and transportation prices are higher in Alaska than in many other regions of the United States. Be sure to take this into account when you sign your contract.

If you go to Alaska to work in the commercial fishing industry, including fish (seafood) processing factories, be prepared for some serious physical exertion. Not everyone can handle a 12-14 hour work schedule in harsh climatic conditions. For example, when recruiting crews for fishing vessels, the following requirements are imposed on workers:

  • Commitment to fulfill the terms of the contract and work the season in full.

  • Good physical fitness and willingness to work uninterruptedly for long periods of time.

  • Ability to get along with people, communication skills and a positive personality. Strict adherence to instructions and safety rules.

Carefully read the official requirements for aliens to work in the United States and Alaska in particular, regardless of your field of work. You can find comprehensive information on the U.S. government portal –

How to find a job in Alaska. Search for jobs without intermediaries.

How to find a job in Alaska

Alaska is stunning with its abundance of beautiful scenery, variety of animals, rich culture and places for outdoor activities. Despite the often hard work, it is very pleasant to live in this state. The main challenge and difficulty for overseas job seekers is finding an open position in Alaska.

Not every American employer is ready to spend time and energy on bureaucratic procedures to obtain work permits for foreigners. All the more so to hire an applicant from abroad, the vacancy should not be applied for by local citizens, and the salary must be no lower than the state average.

The first thing to do is to determine the region where, based on the demand for occupations in the local labor market, there is a chance of finding a job in Alaska.

Anchorage. The largest city in southern Alaska, home to more than 40% of the state's citizens. The greatest number of vacancies for foreigners in different spheres is concentrated here.

Fairbanks. The second largest city in central Alaska and home to the University of Alaska. Jobs are offered in science, education, and some social occupations.

Juneau. The capital city of the state of Alaska. A major source of jobs, especially for seasonal employment, is in tourism. A very expensive region to live in. For example, renting a home will cost at least $1,000 a month.

Kenai. A small town of up to 8,000 people offers jobs in tourism, seafood processing, and the fishing industry.

Valdez. A town in southern Alaska. Jobs for foreigners in the oil industry are available.

This is an incomplete list of cities for employment in Alaska. In some other regions there is a shortage of skilled technicians, construction workers and medical personnel. Have patience and analyze information on the Internet. Visit forums and social networking groups. Look for employers and offer services directly. Start your search for unmediated jobs in Alaska with government resources.

The official website of the Alaska Department of Labor and Workforce –

Official Alaska employer information –

Contact information for employment centers in Alaska –

Join a professional social networking site – – a useful resource for finding seasonal summer jobs in Alaska, including, fishing, oil industry, construction, cruise ships, seafood packing and more.

Popular Alaska job search sites

If you can't find a job in Alaska on your own, contact an official staffing agency, preferably an American one. A resource to help with your search is Or research special immigration programs such as Work and Travel USA, Career Training USA, and Au-Pair. Learn more here.

Jobs and salary in Alaska

Jobs and salary in Alaska

Most jobs in Alaska (physically demanding and in challenging climatic conditions) pay very decently. The official average wage in the U.S. is $1,145 per week, and specifically in Alaska is about $1,285. The minimum hourly wage in that state as of January 1, 2024 is $11.73. Often seasonal overseas job seekers work in Alaska overtime for 12-18 hours a day with virtually no days off and earn about $4,000-5,000 a month.

If you take the in-demand jobs in Alaska for foreigners in 2024, the first jobs offered are seasonal jobs in the fishing industry. Women can work in plants packing, sorting and cutting fish or seafood. Men are more likely to be employed on fishing boats. Contracts are mostly provided for the period from May to October. There may be restrictions on age and health.

Very common vacancies in Alaska are on oil platforms, mostly skilled engineers with lots of experience. There are vacancies in tourism industry such as guides, instructors, hotel and hotel staff. The medical industry needs certified doctors and nurses. Jobs are available for programmers and developers. Slightly less common drivers and other unskilled trades are needed. Ordinary workers can earn $2,000 to $3,000 a month or more in Alaska.

© 2020–2024 All Rights Reserved.