You may be inching toward 18 and the legal title of ‘adult,’ but you’re still a minor and are therefore limited to the types of jobs and job settings where you can work. But fear not! There is a host of retailers that are anxious to hire 17-year-olds. Sure, you’ll likely hold an entry-level or basic position, but it’s a great first step in the workplace. Read on to learn about the limitations to working at 17 and which stores are able to hire you. Retail jobs for 17 year olds are out there…

In This Article

Working Limitations at 17

As a minor, you are limited by the Department of Labor’s (DOL) Hazardous Occupations Orders, which bans anyone under the age of 18 from performing hazardous jobs.

Some of the hazardous jobs banned by the DOL for those under the age of 18 include:

  • Manufacturing or storing explosives
  • Driving a motor vehicle or working as an outside helper on motor vehicles
  • Coal mining
  • Forest fire fighting and forest fire prevention, timber tract, forestry service, and occupations in logging and sawmilling
  • Using power-driven woodworking machines
  • Roofing, or work performed on a roof
  • Using power-driven hoisting apparatus or metal-forming, punching, and shearing machines
  • Jobs that would expose you to radioactive substances and ionizing radiation
  • Manufacturing brick, tile, and related products
  • Working in wrecking, demolition, and ship-breaking operations

Minimum Wage Laws at 17

In most circumstances, you must be paid at least the federal minimum wage of $7.25 per hour. Exceptions can apply, depending on where you work. For instance, some states set their own minimum wage requirements, so you could make more per hour, depending on the state in which you reside.

But here’s the catch: Young employees are often subject to different minimum wage requirements. At 17, your employer can pay you the youth minimum wage, which the federal government sets at $4.25 per hour. Until you reach age 20, any time you start a new job, your employer can pay you the youth minimum wage for the first 90 consecutive calendar days (not work days) of your employment. Some state and municipal governments have their own laws regulating or prohibiting the youth minimum wage, so check your local employment laws to see if this applies to you.

Retail Stores That Hire at 17

1. Aeropostale

2. American Eagle Outfitters

  • Positions available for 17-year-olds: Sales associate, stock associate
  • Other information: The minimum age for working at American Eagle Outfitters is 16, and was verified by contacting the company.
  • Find a location
  • Apply online

3. Banana Republic

4. Barnes & Noble

  • Positions available for 17-year-olds: Bookseller, maintenance clerk (positions may vary by location)
  • Other information: The minimum age for working at Barnes & Noble is 16, and was verified by contacting a customer service representative. Learn more about Barnes & Noble careers.
  • Find a location
  • Apply online

5. BJ’s Wholesale Club

6. Charlotte Russe

7. CVS

8. Food Lion

  • Positions available for 17-year-olds: Various associate positions (sales, grocery, bakery, etc.)
  • Other information: The minimum age for working at Food Lion is 16, and was verified by contacting a customer service representative. However, specific positions for teens may vary by location. Contact your local store for verification.
  • Find a location
  • Apply online

9. Forever 21

  • Positions available for 17-year-olds: Sales associate
  • Other information: The minimum age for working at Forever 21 is 16, and was verified by contacting a customer service representative. Learn more about working at Forever 21.
  • Find a location
  • Apply online

10. Gap

11. Giant Eagle

  • Positions available for 17-year-olds: Cashier, parking lot attendant, customer service, courtesy clerk, stock clerk, fuel station attendant
  • Other information: The minimum age for working at Giant Eagle was verified by individual job descriptions on the website. Each Giant Eagle location has its own minimum age requirement, but most hire at 16. Be sure to call your local store for verification.
  • Find a location
  • Apply online

12. Giant Food

13. Harris Teeter

  • Positions available for 17-year-olds: Produce clerk, grocery stock clerk, customer service clerk, dairy clerk, cashier, bagger
  • Other information: The minimum age to work at Harris Teeter is 16, and was verified by job descriptions on their website.
  • Find a location
  • Apply online

14. Harveys

  • Positions available for 17-year-olds: Bagger, various associate positions (grocery associate, cashier associate, bakery associate, etc.)
  • Other information: The minimum age to work at Harveys is 15, and was verified by contacting a customer service representative.
  • Find a location
  • Apply online

15. HomeGoods

  • Positions available for 17-year-olds: Sales/merchandise associate, coordinator
  • Other information: The minimum age to work at HomeGoods is 16, and was verified by specific job descriptions on job listings. To apply, find a location near you, download their job application form and hand it in to the store manager.
  • Find a location
  • Apply online

16. Hot Topic

17. Hy-Vee

  • Positions available for 17-year-olds: Courtesy clerk, checker, produce clerk, kitchen clerk, stocker, floral clerk
  • Other information: The minimum age to work at Hy-Vee is 16 at the majority of stores. However, a customer service representative verified that since stores are independently operated, they are able to set their own policy.
  • Find a location
  • Apply online

18. JCPenney

  • Positions available for 17-year-olds: Sales associate, merchandise associate
  • Other information: The minimum age to work for JCPenney is 16, and was verified by contacting a customer service representative.
  • Find a location
  • Apply online

19. Justice

20. King Soopers

  • Positions available for 17-year-olds: Courtesy clerk, grocery clerk, floral clerk, stocker,
  • Other information: The minimum age to work at King Soopers is 15, and was verified by contacting a customer service representative. 
  • Find a location
  • Apply online

21. Kohl’s

  • Positions available for 17-year-olds: Customer service associate, sales associate, freight associate
  • Other information: The minimum age to work at Kohl’s is 17, and was verified by contacting a customer service representative. Contact your local store for an exact list of positions available for 17 year olds, as they may vary by location. Learn more about Kohl’s hiring process.
  • Find a location
  • Apply online

22. Kmart

  • Positions available for 17-year-olds: Cashier, customer service associate
  • Other information: The minimum age to work at Kmart is 16, and was verified by contacting a customer service representative.
  • Find a location
  • Apply online

23. Kroger

  • Positions available for 17-year-olds: Cashier, bagger, grocery clerk, produce clerk, meat clerk, deli clerk, bakery clerk
  • Other information: The minimum age to work at Kroger is 14 in some locations, and was verified by a customer service representative. Each location may have its own minimum age requirements, so check with your local store.
  • Find a location
  • Apply online

24. Marshalls

  • Positions available for 17-year-olds: Merchandise associate, backroom coordinator
  • Other information: The minimum age to work at Marshalls is 16, and was verified by specific job descriptions on job listings. To apply, find a location near you, download their job application form and hand it in to the store manager.
  • Find a location
  • Apply online

25. Meijer

26. Old Navy

27. Publix

28. Safeway

  • Positions available for 17-year-olds: Courtesy clerk, stocker, production clerk, cashier, fuel station attendant, food clerk
  • Other information: The minimum age requirement to work specific positions at Safeway can be found on the company website. You must be at least 14. Simply enter your age and location and the positions you qualify for will appear in a list on the following page.
  • Find a location
  • Apply online

29. Target

  • Positions available for 17-year-olds: Cashier, cart attendant, sales floor team member, backroom team member
  • Other information: The minimum age to work at Target retail stores was verified by the job application process. You must be 16 to work in stores and 18 to work in distribution centers.
  • Find a location
  • Apply online

30. T.J. Maxx

  • Positions available for 17-year-olds: Merchandise associate, coordinator
  • Other information: The minimum age to work at T.J. Maxx is 16, and was verified by specific job descriptions on job listings. To apply, find a location near you, download their job application form and hand it in to the store manager.
  • Find a location
  • Apply online

31. Walgreens

  • Positions available for 17-year-olds: customer service associate, beauty advisor, photo specialist
  • Other information: The minimum age to work at Walgreens is 16, and was verified by contacting a customer service representative. Learn more about jobs at Walgreens.
  • Find a location
  • Apply online

32. Walmart

33. Wegmans

  • Positions available for 17-year-olds: Customer service associate, cashier, parking lot attendant
  • Other information: The minimum age to work at Wegmans is 15, and was verified by the individual job descriptions. However, each location’s minimum age for certain positions varies, so be sure to call your local store for verification.
  • Find a location
  • Apply online

34. Winn-Dixie

  • Positions available for 17-year-olds: Bagger, cashier associate
  • Other information: The minimum age to work at Winn-Dixie is 15, and was verified by contacting a customer service representative.
  • Find a location
  • Apply online

In Summary

The good news is that at 17 years old, you only have one more year until you are free to work without limitations. Until then, check out the variety of retail opportunities above, or any other occupation not declared hazardous by the Department of Labor. Retail jobs for 17 year olds do exist!