Meet the New York City Dudes Who Will Wait in Line So You Don’t Have to

Ever see a protracted line and need you possibly can pay somebody to save lots of your spot — and your useful time? We’ve discovered your dude.

Robert Samuel, a professional line sitter in New York City poses on the street in New York City.
Robert Samuel, knowledgeable line sitter in New York Metropolis, began his firm Identical Ole Line Dudes in 2012. Zackary Grant for The Penny Hoarder

Meet Robert Samuel, knowledgeable line sitter in New York Metropolis. “Relying on the place you’re in line, that placement will be the distinction between offered and offered out,” he says.

Yup, he will get paid to take a seat  — not stand — in line for individuals. He likes to emphasis the sit half.

Samuel bought fired from his customer support job at AT&T — paradoxically for being late. Whereas working there, he all the time seen the frenzy new iPhone launch would stir. So, he put an advert on Craigslist in 2012, and somebody requested him to attend in line to get him a shiny new iPhone. Though the shopper ended up shopping for the cellphone on-line, he nonetheless paid Samuel $325 for the 15 hours he had waited in line. That day, Samuel’s enterprise, Identical Ole Line Dudes (S.O.L.D.), was born.

“I wished to sort of grow to be the person who you considered each time you considered strains,” mentioned Samuel, “There goes that Identical Ole Line Dude.”

Same Ole Line Dudes employees sit together
Identical Ole Line Dudes employs about 30 unbiased contractors who will anticipate any need. Zackary Grant for The Penny Hoarder

Immediately, the corporate is now not only one dude. Samuel has about 30 dudes or dudettes who wait in strains for different individuals  — irrespective of how lengthy it takes.

Every week Identical Ole Line Dudes averages 15 bookings, charging $45 for the primary two hours and $10 for every further half hour.

The dudes repeatedly line up for decent gadgets like Dominique Ansel’s Cronuts and shoe releases, in addition to tickets to concert events, “Hamilton” and “Saturday Night time Dwell.”  This 12 months they even labored their first commencement, holding a spot for a mother who wished to be entrance row to look at her daughter stroll throughout the stage at Columbia College.

And each time an iPhone is launched, they wait. A couple of years in the past, seven sitters collectively made $14,000 throughout the iPhone 7 launch.

Samuel says buyer requests don’t shock him anymore. “Once we first began, I am like, ‘Oh my god… this [item] is free they usually’re truly paying us $65 to attend three hours,” he says. “However then whenever you notice that it might be one thing that their child needs they usually cannot get away from work — then $65 is nothing if it means making your youngster glad.”

On common, sitters make about $1,000 a month. In contrast to most jobs, the extra you wait, the extra you make. Time is, in reality, cash.

Adonis “Donnie” Porchwas one of many first sitters and makes use of the cash he makes to pay for varsity. Reminiscing about his favourite line-waiting expertise, he says, “I bought a $100 tip on high of a ticket to see “Hamilton,” on high of meals that was catered to me for lunch and dinner, on high of assembly the rapper Nas. All in that one sitting.”

However working situations aren’t all the time so excellent.

Allbirds created a restricted version shoe with Shake Shack that attracted lots of of individuals, together with clients of Identical Ole Line Dudes. Zackary Grant for The Penny Hoarder

“We wait within the rain, we wait within the snow, we anticipate all of it,” says Porch, “We now have Domino’s delivered to the road. Due to that relationship that we have constructed with individuals… in line we’ll ask them to carry our spot so we are able to go to the restroom. We use an app referred to as Bathroom Finder that may tell us the place the native loos are within the space.”

Though it may possibly take hours, days and even weeks — Porch says he as soon as waited two weeks for “Hamilton” tickets — the reward is value all of the wait.

“For me, if I get the product for my buyer, the enjoyment of simply seeing them glad that I bought this for them is my finest reward I may ever ask for,” he says. “I simply all the time need to see my clients glad. That is simply all the time been my motto. Regardless if I get a tip or not.”

In its sixth 12 months, Identical Ole Line Dudes offers Samuel with an revenue that far exceeds his unique expectations.

“I by no means thought it will pay my hire, assist me pay my scholar loans and likewise make use of my family and friends,” he mentioned. “It’s actually been a blessing.”  

Christie Submit, supervising producer and host at The Penny Hoarder, is all the time discovering methods to make tales visible. You’ll be able to see the movies she produces on YouTube. Subscribe and provides her a shoutout @christiepost.

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