EMT Salary Levels

According to the Bureau of Labor statistics, the amount of pay received by EMT-Bs can range between $22,000 and $34,000. Pay rates can vary significantly depending on several key factors.

EMT Pay Levels Vary from State to State
The salaries received by EMTs vary according to the state they live in. Some states pay as little as $8.37 while other states pay EMTs much more.

Average Hourly Wage by State

  • Alabama: $14.56
  • Alaska: $23.10
  • Arkansas: $13.85
  • Arizona: $15.00
  • California: $17.37
  • Colorado: $17.60
  • Connecticut: $18.25
  • Delaware: $18.36
  • Florida: $15.23
  • Georgia: $14.89
  • Hawaii: $23.04
  • Idaho: $19.07
  • Illinois: $18.54
  • Indiana: $14.37
  • Iowa: $14.87
  • Kansas: $13.37
  • Kentucky: $13.65
  • Louisiana: $16.64
  • Maine: $14.59
  • Maryland: $20.42
  • Massachusetts: $17.76
  • Michigan: $14.63
  • Minnesota: $15.55
  • Mississippi: $14.03
  • Missouri: $15.34
  • Montana: $13.04
  • Nebraska: $14.56
  • Nevada: $18.43
  • New Hampshire: $15.38
  • New Jersey: $17.25
  • New Mexico: $14.54
  • New York: $17.75
  • North Carolina: $15.58
  • North Dakota: $14.29
  • Ohio: $14.00
  • Oklahoma: $13.86
  • Oregon: $21.43
  • Pennsylvania: $14.64
  • Rhode Island: $16.06
  • South Carolina: $15.18
  • South Dakota: $13.26
  • Tennessee: $15.21
  • Texas: $15.23
  • Utah: $15.13
  • Vermont: $14.70
  • Virginia: $17.02
  • Washington: $20.93
  • West Virginia: $11.72
  • Wisconsin: $13.69
  • Wyoming: $15.47

EMTs living in one of the following states can count themselves fortunate. These states have the highest average wage for EMTs in the US. In some cases, EMTs relocate to maximize earning potential.

  • Alaska
  • Hawaii
  • Oregon
  • Washington
  • Maryland

Certain Agencies Pay Higher Rates
EMT-B pay rates can vary according to the type of work they perform and the type of organization that they are employed by. Of course, the types of agencies that pay the most vary. In some cases, private organizations pay more, but in others, private agencies offer lower amounts of pay.

Generally, the agencies that pay the most are agencies that employ EMTs that perform numerous functions. Police forces and fire departments generally offer higher amounts of pay and better benefits. The catch is that most of these positions are only available in highly populated cities. EMTs are volunteers in smaller areas.

EMT Pay Levels Increase with Training and Additional Certification
Just like other field, the more knowledge you acquire, the higher rate of pay you can qualify for. As EMTs progress in their training more opportunities arise.

Adequately preparing for testing and certification can assist EMT students in getting a jump start on their careers. Practice tests, mock skill exams, and other preparation methods can ensure students pass with the highest grades possible.

Networking is important for EMTs. The first opportunity EMT students have to search for employment is often through an instructor. By utilizing practice exams prior to certification, students can demonstrate to an instructor how serious they are about their career choice. Most instructors have local connections with various employers that can hire newly certified EMTs. Taking advantage of this networking opportunity is essential for career success.

EMTs Work Long Hours
EMTs often work 60-80 hours a week. This is problematic in calculating annual pay, but in most cases, annual salaries can be calculated based on a longer work week. Some areas are adopting a 51 hours’ work week, alternating 12 and 24 hour shifts in order to prevent burn-out. It seems to work well in most areas, preventing employee turn-over and allowing EMTs to adequately balance work and life.
Students who choose to become EMTs embark on an arduous journey. There are many challenges involved in becoming an EMT, but making a difference in the lives of others and in your community is completely worth it in the end.


Boyce, A. (n.d.). EMT and Paramedic Salary. Allied Health Schools | Healthcare Careers and Degrees. Retrieved March 7, 2012, from http://www.alliedhealthworld.com/emt_paramedic/salary.html

EMT – Basic: Salary and Career Information. (n.d.). Research Schools, Online Courses, Degrees and Careers at Education Portal. Retrieved March 7, 2012, from http://education-portal.com/articles/EMT_-_Basic_Salary_and_Career_Information.html

EMT Salary Your EMT/Paramedic Salary and Career Resource. (n.d.). EMT Salary — Your EMT/Paramedic Salary and Career Resource. Retrieved March 7, 2012, from http://emt-salary.com/

Month. (n.d.). Emergency Medical Technicians and Paramedics . U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics. Retrieved March 7, 2012, from http://www.bls.gov/oco/ocos101.htm

For more EMT knowledge, go to our EMT Resources page

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