21 Ways To Make Extra Cash Money This Holiday Season
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Need to Make Extra Money for the Holidays?
The holiday season is a time characterized by joy, goodwill and cheer, but between work deadlines, family obligations, and daily stresses, ‘cheer’ is not always the term many of us would use to describe it.
Money (or lack thereof) can be an all-powerful stressor in the season of giving, adding an extra burden even for those of us who manage our finances reasonably well the rest of the year.
We plan and we budget and we coupon, but sometimes no matter how hard we try, those ends between what we want or need and what resources we have available simply don’t meet, or they’re so strained it causes us unwanted anxiety.
And while we recognize “it’s not about the money”, sometimes a little extra sure wouldn’t hurt.
So this holiday season, we want to help you lighten your load with some easy ways to earn extra cash.
And yes, there’s still time.
With a little creative thinking and a solid internet connection, you can add a little fat to your wallet, and a bit of wiggle room to your budget.
And even after the holidays have come and gone, these are ideas that can help you most anytime that things get a little strapped.
I’ve personally used many of these ideas to make extra money at one point or another, and those that I haven’t used personally, I’ve known others who have used them. Ain’t nothin’ like a good side-hustle 🙂
21 Great Ways To Make A Little Extra Money
1. House Sit
The fall season and the holidays are periods during which many of us travel.
Visits to relatives, school breaks or seasonal vacations are extremely common, and you probably already know friends and neighbors who may have a getaway planned.
While they’re away, most people need to make arrangements for the elements of their lives that will be staying behind.
Plants need watering, fish need feeding, and mail needs to be brought inside.
Offering your services as a house sitter can earn you a little extra cash, and put your neighbor’s (or your boss’s or your co-worker’s) mind at ease while they enjoy their time away.
Websites like Trusted House Sitters, House Sitters America, Mind My House, Nomadic Matt and Rover all provide a generous amount of information on this subject, and a vast selection of opportunities from which to choose.
2. Online Tutor
During the fall and into early winter, kids are hard at work with their academic studies.
And some need a little extra help with subjects like math, science or English language.
This is an ideal time to help those students work on improving their skills.
Online tutors can work remotely through a number of freelance sites, and offer quick and informative lessons to diligent kids.
Typical tutor sites allow you to interact with your students via a secure online chat, webcam, or phone.
These tools help you share your skills as an expert in math, English, science, and other subjects.
3. Sell Used Electronics
If you’re anything like me, upgrading to the newest gadget isn’t exactly a passion, but it happens.
It’s a necessary evil of our information age: buy a device, love it, become frustrated when two years later your device is considered obsolete, and move onto the next one.
The previous devices tend to get stashed away in a drawer somewhere, useless to anyone, even when they may still work perfectly well.
Should you try to sell broken or less valuable gadgets to people online? No.
But you can sell them to outlets that will fix and refurbish them to work properly and pass them on to the next user.
Your old iPod, laptop, cell phone, and even GPS systems are still valuable to someone and can make you a little bit of money.
In any condition, there’s a platform out there offering pay for devices you don’t use anymore, from which you can make extra money.
4. Become a secret shopper
Based on location, the app will connect you with clients looking for information about the display and quality of their product on store shelves.
It’s as easy as going inside, finding the product, and reporting back what you find.
Shiftgig offers the additional bonus of listing other “gigs” outside of secret shopping such as event staff listings.
Wherever you’re located, these apps can show you how to earn extra money directly from your phone.
Be sure to check reviews of an app before deciding on which to use.
This will help you determine what sources are more reliable and pay on time.
5. Pet sitter
Very much in the spirit of house-sitting, pet-sitting is another fantastic way to make extra money during the holiday season.
If you’re good with animals, offering to look after your neighbor’s pets (i.e walking, feeding, checking in on) can add a little extra to your bank account, and your neighbors will have the peace of mind of knowing Fido is getting the attention he needs.
6. Refurbish old furniture
I made some good money doing this in my college days.
“Flipping” furniture is an inexpensive, but lucrative, source of income.
If you have a few basic skills (or are willing to learn some), you have the tools to make old furniture sparkle with new life.
Antique stores, flea markets, and sometimes even the side of the road, are filled with inexpensive lackluster furniture pieces just waiting for a second chance at life.
A new coat of paint with some stenciled in flair turns what may have been a dingy old chair into a fabulous-looking new piece.
Depending on your source for furniture, you can sell refurbished versions at ten times what it cost you (think $3 flea market chair repainted and sold for $35).
Even better, you’ll get some low-key art therapy in the process.
7. Sell Some Nostalgia
Chances are, somewhere in your home there is a secret stash of old items or collectibles for which you no longer have any use.
Believe it or not, those things offer a way for you to make extra money.
VHS tapes, old toys, comic books, and other collectible items may not hold a lot of value for you, but there is a huge market out there looking for items that you may have.
If you’re not interested in selling online, and old-fashioned yard sale, garage sale or flea market is always an option.
8. Become an Airbnb
If you have extra space in your home or are going away for a while, Airbnb may be an option for you.
The app rents out space to travelers and ensures a controlled and safe transaction for both the homeowner and visitor.
As the holiday season is also a big travel season, Airbnbs can be especially busy this time of year.
Check out your home and determine if this is a viable income source for you.
You may even meet some fun new people while making a little extra cash for your piggybank.
9. Rideshare app driver
This is a gig that continues to become increasingly popular as a side-income source.
If you have a car and some downtime (while kids are in school, if you have a flexible schedule, or on weekends), you can be alerted when someone in your area needs a ride, offer a source of transportation to those who need it and make a little pocket change.
Both of these apps evolve constantly in an effort to make sure that both drivers and patrons feel safe and comfortable.
Especially if you live in a busy city, near an airport, close to a college campus or a few bars, being a rideshare driver can become a great part-time gig.
10. Sell gently used clothes and accessories
Most of us have a few clothing items that don’t seem to ever make it out of the closet.
Depending on the item’s value, you can make a wide range of income through these transactions.
Keep in mind, however, that it is very unlikely you will make back what you initially paid for the piece.
Even so, you may get more use out of the extra money than you did from the item simply taking up space in your closet.
Someone out there would love to have it.
11. Online customer service
Online customer service jobs are another way to make extra money.
What’s required is that you have an internet connection and a phone.
Most of these jobs will require downloading a set of instructions and answering phone calls or emails remotely to help customers experiencing issues.
The range of pay and requirements of the job varies by client, but if you’re comfortable speaking on the phone (and have the patience for customer service) this could be the perfect way to keep earning on your days off, in the evenings or on weekends.
12. Online personal assistant
Online personal assistants are a little different from online customer service reps, but can be found on the same sites.
As an online personal assistant, you will help manage a client’s appointments, make phone calls and arrangements for them, and handle small day to day organizational tasks.
The length of these jobs varies from a single day hire to more long-term positions.
If you can manage a planner and know basic Microsoft Office programs, becoming a remote assistant is a perfect career option.
13. Freelance Editor
Freelance editing is for anyone with solid grammar skills and a sharp eye.
The specifics cover a range of topics including resume critique, academic proofreading, copyediting, and many more.
You can also post your own gig advertising what services you choose to offer, and at what fee.
While many gigs are priced in the $20 – $30 range, doing several a week can quickly add up- especially if you’re just looking to fund that one special item on your loved one’s holiday wish list.
14. Donate blood plasma
Before you panic, I assure you that donating blood plasma is completely legal and much less frightening than some think (ask a college student).
Plasma is needed by medical professionals to help their patients, and it’s something we all have for the offering.
Donors are screened for legitimacy and health, then sent to the closest donation center for a relatively quick donation process.
The pay rate ranges from about $20 to $50 per donation, but this is an option that won’t take up hours and hours of your time, and you can donate up to several times per month.
To find out more, visit DonatingPlasma.org.
15. Gift Wrap Stations and Seasonal Retail Employment
If you live anywhere near a shopping area, the holiday season is synonymous with traffic, shoppers, and extra cash opportunities.
You’ve probably seen a gift wrap station in your local mall or department store, and anyone capable of cutting and taping wrapping paper is eligible to apply.
Use your creative flair and get into the holiday spirit while making money, and helping someone else cross one more thing off their to-do list.
Similarly, most stores hire extra help during the holiday season to make up for the higher volume of customers.
Taking a few shifts based on your availability can be very beneficial, and adds some retail experience to your resume!
15a. Personal shopper
Offer personal shopping services for busy people who don’t have the time or the inclination to shop on their own.
Senior citizens who may not be inclined to fight traffic and shopping crowds (or who don’t mind doing the shopping, but lack transportation) may also be potential clients.
If you live in or near a major city, you can provide your services through an app like TaskRabbit. If not, you can market and promote your services the old-fashioned way through community boards, local grocery stores, senior citizen centers or senior living complexes.
16. Event staff
Shows, concerts, fairs, and other holiday entertainment can be common in the fall and winter months, depending upon your location.
These events often need extra help to run smoothly.
Ticket booth workers, valets, bag checkers, and concession stand cashiers may be brought in to help the venue’s normal staff.
Check out what upcoming events are happening locally and get in touch with the event coordinator.
They may be hiring extra hands, even a few days before an event.
If you live in or near a city or a heavy tourist area, there are even more opportunities within reach.
17. Survey Taker
Online surveys can earn you small amounts of cash for relatively simple questions.
These surveys won’t make you a whole paycheck, but if you’re looking for just a few extra bucks at the end of a busy week it’s worth a try.
18. Sell your craft
If you paint, knit, sew, make jewelry or any other kind of craft, the holiday season is your time to shine!
There are dozens of ways to use your talents to make extra money.
Sign up for a booth at a local craft fair (they’re everywhere this time of year), or sell from online platforms like Etsy.
If you’re strictly a visual artist, websites like Redbubble offer options to have your work printed on different items and available on demand.
Whatever your creative calling is, there’s a way to use it professionally during the holiday season.
People are looking for unique gift options, and the items you make could be exactly what they are searching for.
Crochet365knittoo is a great site if you’re searching for cute and creative crochet patterns and helpful instruction.
19. Sell used books
You don’t have to be a college student to sell back books (Although, if you are a student this is a good opportunity).
A number of people have done well selling books on eBay.
You can also trade books in for other books you may be looking for. Selling books is a two for one benefit- less clutter in your home and more money in your wallet.
20. Write reviews
Companies large and small know the importance of having good reviews online.
Becoming an online reviewer is easy, not uncommon, and provides a service desired by many businesses with product or service websites.
Some businesses will even provide a sample of their product (be it a physical product or a digital copy of the book, etc.) to ensure that reviewers are able to promote all of the features and benefits of an item.
The pay rate and product type vary wildly, but being a reviewer is a means of earning extra money with the possibility of getting to sample something you may love to boot!
21. Teach a class
Different from online tutoring, teaching an online class is a relatively new frontier that a number of former academics and current creatives are trying out.
If there’s a subject you know a lot about, this is an option for you. If teaching online isn’t your style, you can also look for options locally.
Craft stores like Michaels, music stores, and local community centers often hire candidates to teach classes to their customers.
Running a Wine & Paint night, a cooking class, or giving guitar lessons lets you make money while passing on what you know to people eager to learn it.
It’s a great way to explore your passions while interacting with your community.
Bonus: Rewards Programs
While rewards programs won’t make you tons of extra cash, here are a couple of additional ways to earn gifts, discounts or rewards to help ease your budget, or to simply add fun “extra’s” without having to spend money. Check these out.
No matter how daunting the upcoming holiday season may seem if you have limited funds or operate on a small budget, you still have time to earn a few extra dollars to give you a little breathing room and keep you from being overwhelmed or stressed.
Even if you have a hectic schedule, there are a number of options available to earn extra income that you can add to your stash of cash.
Between gift giving, entertaining, and travel, even when you work to keep things as budget-friendly as possible, the holiday season can be expensive.
The options we’ve outlined can help you to find creative ways to make extra money, keep your head above water and allow you to enjoy the season of good cheer without stressing about whether or not your next paycheck will cut it.
If you use the information in this post to create a new side-hustle, I’d love to hear about it in the comments! And as always, if you have enjoyed this post, please share it with your family and friends. Thanks!
Kimberly Clay is the founder and creative force behind What She Say. She’s a business professional, writer and editor who’s been creating and managing digital content for nearly twenty years. Her work is now focused in the areas of self-improvement and personal development, and she is passionate about helping other individuals, especially women, to find a path for living their best life.