Massage therapists top China's service sector pay list

Students practise point massage, a traditional Chinese medical care solution, to relieve patients' headache during a TCM training session in Chengdu, Sichuan province.
Students practise point massage, a traditional Chinese medical care solution, to relieve patients' headache during a TCM training session in Chengdu, Sichuan province. PHOTO: CHINA DAILY/ ASIA NEWS NETWORK

BEIJING (CHINA DAILY/ASIA NEWS NETWORK) - Giving massages can bring in good money in China.

Masseurs and masseuses are the best-paid in China's urban service industry, followed by fitness instructors and nannies who take care of newborns, according to a report released by 58.com, a job search website.

The average monthly salary of these jobs is more than 10,000 yuan (S$2,062), much higher than that for office workers.

Wage increases in the service sector is a result of people's greater willingness to pay for services to improve their health and well-being.

"I think the salary is reasonable. A nanny for newborns has to take care of both the baby and the mother, and has to stay alert 24 hours a day, which is very demanding," said Ms Zhao Xi, 30, who paid 9,000 yuan per month for such a nanny last year.

Ms Zhao, who works in the finance industry, also hired a personal trainer after giving birth, which cost her 300 yuan per hour.

"It is a bit expensive. But I think they deserve it. I know their diet is very strict as a personal trainer and they also train very hard to keep in shape, in addition to giving lessons to clients," she said.

Due to the rapid growth of e-commerce in China, the number of couriers has reached two million. With average earnings of about 7,000 yuan per month, they ranked sixth on the list.

Mr Ma Weijun, a courier, works up to 17 hours a day and delivers some 300 packages during peak season, earning more than 10,000 yuan per month.

"You never have regular meals, and almost all of the deliverymen have chronic stomach problems," the 44-year-old said.

Blue-collar workers are still in short supply in some sectors, despite more people opting for vocational education in the past few years. For instance, there is a shortage of 118,000 air-conditioner installers nationwide, the report said.

Top 10 professions in the service industry by monthly earnings in 2016

1. Massage therapist: 17,669 yuan (S$3,640)

2. Fitness instructor: 15,225 yuan

3. Nanny for newborns: 10,952 yuan

4. Vehicle mechanic: 10,070 yuan

5. Air-conditioner installer: 8,310 yuan

6. Courier: 7,028 yuan

7. Beautician: 6,709 yuan

8. Food delivery rider: 6,445 yuan

9. Driver: 6,000 yuan

10. Chef: 5,913 yuan