Editor's note: This story has been updated to reflect the 2024 pay rates.

The city of Austin is working to hire more than 600 lifeguards to fully staff Austin-area pools for the upcoming swim season.

The gist

The city offers 45 public aquatic facilities, including seven regional pools, three community pools, 22 neighborhood pools, one wading pool, Barton Springs Pool and 11 splash pads.

Kanya Lyons, public information specialist for Austin Parks and Recreation, said in a news release that it takes about 850 lifeguards to fully staff the pools during the summer months.

"There are currently 235 lifeguards on staff, so hundreds of positions are still open, for now," Lyons said.

The specifics

The starting hourly pay for entry-level positions, including part-time and full-time, is $20.80.

Candidates must be at least 15 years old and successfully perform the following tasks during lifeguard certification:
  • Swim 150 yards freestyle
  • Swim 50 yards face-up with a rescue tube under their arms
  • Retrieve a 10-pound brick from 12-14 feet of water
  • Tread water for 1 minute with and without using their hands
Looking back

Until last year, the city had achieved a fully staffed lifeguard workforce just once in the past decade. In 2023, officials nearly doubled the number of lifeguards compared to 2022.

What else?

Season passes for area pools—which include a parking pass—will go on sale Feb. 12. Prices for residents range from free for veterans and people aged 80 and older, to $370 for a family of four.

A list of Austin-area pools and splash pads can be found on the city's website.