I just spent the entire weekend (8 hours yesterday in the rain and 8 hours today) at the soccer fields for a tournament with one of my daughters. You may or may not realize this, but being a soccer referee is a great way to earn some extra cash on a part-time basis and can easily end up yielding a cool grand in a month. I was a soccer referee for five years when my kids were younger and didn’t take as much time in their own activities.
Becoming a Soccer Referee
The process is really quite simple. There is a weekend class that you attend where you go over the soccer rules and listen to lectures and videos. You are given a book of the rules and at the end of the class are required to take a test. A certain score on the test is expected in order to receive a license. Once you have a license, you are assigned some of the younger kids and work with experienced referees for at least 10 games before being allowed to move to the center position. Each soccer game has a center referee and two sideline (or assistant) referees.
Actually the costs are fairly reasonable. The class is about $100 at most. Then you have to have comfortable black shoes and the uniform along with flags, a whistle, and a few other items. Added all together, I bet you could get set up for about $300-$400 total.
Making Money as a Soccer Referee
It is possible to make good money as a referee. The center ref for my daughter’s game made $50 for about 2 hours time at the most. He had to get there about 30 minutes before the start of the game to check in the players and verify they had the proper equipment. The game was 40 minutes per half plus a 10 minute half-time or a grand total of 2 hours. That works out to $20 per hour!
Now since it was a tournament, many of the referees will work 4-6 games each day for the 2 days. That could add up to $400-$600 for a weekend. There are many soccer tournaments during the spring and fall. Simply work 2 weekends at a tournament, and you have made your $1000 per month. There are also games during the week in the evenings for league play and recreation leagues.
Lest you think that soccer is only played during nicer weather, there are many indoor leagues that play during the colder months as well. Many referees will also work these indoor facilities at $20 per game, but the games are only 30-60 minutes total. The license is a slightly different one which requires another class, but the rules are similar enough that it is easy to make the transition in order to make over $1000 monthly every month of the year.
There is always a great need for adult referees in our area, and the pay is actually pretty decent at $20+ per hour. The extra income that you could earn refereeing soccer (or any other sport for that matter) could go a long way in paying off debt, or providing that cushion needed for the budget.