The idea of attending a football match and getting paid for it seems quite a good deal, but the big drawback for many is the part of your contract, which states that you have to watch the crowd not the match. The advantage is to those who may not like football is it gives you a chance of turning you back on the game and get paid to do it.
The pay when I did the job was crap! I worked out that after travelling time and costs and the duration spent on task I ended up earning something like 50p an hour! Needless to say I gave it up after about a year and a half, as it just didn’t pay enough. The rates of pay have gone up since and if you live close to the ground you time and travel overheads will be reduced.
Everyone has a local football team, the best way to get the job is to know someone who is already a steward, they can recommend you and you are almost certain to be in with a good shout. There is always going to be a turn over of staff in this field of work so it is just a matter of time before a vacancy comes up but it is not usually advertised. Like I said most comes from referring, almost like keeping it in the family.
One other point is that once in employment and you prove your worth, there is promotion within the structure also a sideward move into becoming a Hospitality Steward taking care of VIP guests, catering and other duties other than crowd watching, even working in the CCTV domain.
The job as Steward itself involves 99% of the time just watching the crowd and making sure they abide by the rules. You have to report and swearing racist abuse and unsocial behaviour but this goes on all the time so it is ignored in the main. On the odd occasion you will be called into action or asked to move to a troublesome spot so that Stewards’ number are increased and more of deterrent. And on rare occasions you will have to manhandle fans that try pitch invasions, but this is rare nowadays.
There is the chance to Steward other mid week evening games and not just football. There may be rugby, cricket, American football or even pop concerts that you can Steward. Most football grounds are a business and this means making the most of sponsors using the ground and that means hiring you as well.
I enjoyed my time there, but perhaps apart from the fact the pay was poor, I love football too much and got frustrated not being able to watch the game. But for others this may be okay and a good way to get out and earn a little extra. It keeps you away from the shops at weekends as well so you may save there as well.
Lastly, don’t for one moment think this is just for men!