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Service Station Attendant

Kaihoko Penehini/​Hinu

Alternative titles for this job

Service station attendants help customers get petrol, gas or oil for their vehicle, and sell motoring accessories and food items.


Service station attendants usually earn

$23 per hour

Source: Student Job Search, 2017.

Job opportunities

Chances of getting a job as a service station attendant are average due to a regular vacancies for a reduced number of jobs


Pay for service station attendants varies depending on responsibility, experience and location.

Service station attendants usually earn minimum wage.

Source: Student Job Search, 2017.

(This information is a guide only. Find out more about the sources of our pay information)

What you will do

Service station attendants may do some or all of the following:

  • take payment for petrol, food and other goods
  • check petrol tank levels 
  • pump petrol into customers' cars
  • check car batteries, and oil and water levels
  • wash windscreens and check car tyres
  • carry out minor workshop tasks such as fixing tyres
  • keep the shop and forecourt clean and tidy
  • order new stock.

Skills and knowledge

Service station attendants need to have knowledge of:

  • service station products such as petrol, oil and other goods
  • cash handling and customer services
  • food handling and cleaning
  • safety rules and first aid
  • basic mechanical skills.

Working conditions

Service station attendants:

  • work full or part-time hours, and may do shift work including nights and weekends
  • work in service station shops and forecourts
  • work in all weather conditions, and can be exposed to petrol fumes.

What's the job really like?

Doug Thrush

Doug Thrush

Service Station Attendant

Early shifts suit Doug

Service station attendant Doug Thrush likes the freedom of a job where he can begin early.

"What I enjoy most about this job is the hours that I'm working – being able to start early and finish early. I open up in the mornings, so I do the tank dips to see how much fuel is in there and I read the pumps. I also get the pies out of the chiller and the milk ready for the milk distributor.”

The freedom of working outside was also an attraction for Doug. “Here you can get in and out. I spend time inside serving customers but I also work out on the forecourt pumping petrol. I also do things like replacing windscreen wipers and changing punctured tyres.”

Good service brings back the customers

Doug acknowledges that good customer service skills are invaluable. "This job is not as easy as it looks – you've got to keep thinking ahead, so when you meet the customers you know what they're doing and what they want. If you can get people to come back to you again, then you've achieved something."

Entry requirements

There are no specific entry requirements to become a service station attendant, as you gain skills on the job.

A driver's licence is usually required.

Secondary education

A minimum of three years of secondary education is recommended. Useful subjects include English and maths.

Personal requirements

Service station attendants need to be:

  • good at communicating
  • friendly and helpful
  • good at customer service
  • honest and reliable
  • able to follow instructions
  • good at basic maths.

Useful experience

Useful experience for service station attendants includes:

  • customer service work
  • money-handling experience
  • repairing vehicles
  • retail work.

Physical requirements

Service station attendants need to be reasonably fit as they spend long periods on their feet.

Find out more about training

0800 863 693 - -


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What are the chances of getting a job?

Service station closures and self-service petrol pumps reduce opportunities

The decrease in numbers of service station attendants is due to:

  • some large oil companies closing down a number of their smaller franchises
  • some small, independent, rural petrol stations closing due to competition from large companies
  • more stations offering self-service petrol pumps, reducing the need for service station attendants.

According to the Census, 2,166 service station attendants worked in New Zealand in 2018.

Staff turnover creates regular vacancies

While the overall number of available service station attendant roles has reduced, vacancies still come up fairly regularly. This is because service station attendants usually work on a casual or part-time basis, and tend to stay in the job for a short period only.

Demand is good for attendants in stations that have cafes and sell a lot of food and drink.

Chances best if flexible about hours and location

Your chances of getting a job as a service station attendant are best in cities, and if you are prepared to work weekends and evenings.

Service station attendants work for fuel retailers

Service station attendants work for fuel retailers in service stations run by large international organisations or small, local owner-operators. 


  • Iles,J, 'The Shrinking Jobs of Service Station Attendants', 10 November 2017, (
  • Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment, '2006-2014 Occupation Data' (prepared for Careers New Zealand), 2015.
  • Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment, 'New Zealand Fuel Market Financial Performance Study', 29 May 2017, (
  • Polkinghorne, J, 'Petrol Station Shakeup', 9 June 2016, (
  • Statistics New Zealand, 'Retail Trade Survey: September 2017 Quarter', 23 November 2017, (
  • Stats NZ, '2018 Census Data', 2019.
  • Strang, E, 'Z's Head of Retail on Sustainability, the Rise of Self-Service Stations and What Makes Great Customer Service', 3 March 2016, (

(This information is a guide only. Find out more about the sources of our job opportunities information)

Progression and specialisations

With further training, service station attendants may progress to become service station managers.


A service station attendant in the forecourt of a service station

Service station attendants help motorists get petrol, gas or oil for their vehicles

Last updated 3 April 2023