Smart Side Hustles for College Students
Published April 24th, 2019

Congrats you made it into college! Now, how’s your piggybank looking these days?

I’m sure it’s looking just as empty as your drink on a Friday night. Aka Empty. But lucky for every college student in 2019 there’s a magnitude of ways to make some cash from a variety of side hustles. And yes these are legal side hustles!

Uber/Lyft: Do you have a car that gets decent gas mileage? Tons of people need a ride! Ride sharing apps are exploding in popularity and a great way go earn a quick buck being a driver. 

DoorDash: Deliver food, make money! It's really that easy. You can drive or BIKE for DoorDash and deliver food from tons of different restaurants to hungry people in just about any city. Set your own schedule and work when you want—even in a city that you're just visiting! 

Postmates: Postmates is an app delivery service that gives people the ability to make a few extra dollars moving food, office supplies, amazon orders, or honestly anything. If you’ve got a car, bike, or can put one foot in front of the other, make the most of your spare time between classes and pick up some extra coin.

Junk Hauling: One person’s trash is another person’s treasure! Not everybody wants to take the time to sell their junk; some just want it gone without having to deal with it themselves.

Teach Music Lessons: Are you musically gifted? There is no end of children whose parents want them in some extracurricular activity aside from sports. If you can play an instrument and have patience with beginners, this might be right up you alley!

Photography: If you’ve got an eye and some decent equipment, it’s not that hard to turn your hobby into some extra cash. Families are always looking for a deal on portraits; people always want photos of their special events. Also this is not as well known but you can post your photos to popular stock photography sites and if people download your image you can earn some big bucks!

Pet Sitting: Get paid to play with dogs (or feed cats while they mess with your head). Work with a pet sitting company like Rover and get great pet sitting gigs wherever you are.

Personal Trainer: Do you even lift bro? If you know your way around the gym and like helping other people fit into their wedding dress or impress everyone at the class reunion, some certification courses are all that stand between you and a side gig as a personal trainer. 

Influencer/Ambassador: Huge companies are hiring people to promote their brand on college campuses. Influencers play a huge role in modern marketing. It’s a fun way for outgoing students to earn extra money in college and if you’re passionate about that particular brand, you might even get some free merchandise.

Translation Services: If you’re bilingual, or multilingual, there are plenty of times when people and companies might need a one-time translation service. Until online translators give people something that doesn’t sound like a computer pretending to talk, you can take those jobs.

DJ: Yes, everybody and their mother is a DJ these days, but good ones are still hard to come by. If you can shell out some cash up front for some decent equipment you’ll instantly leap frog more than half of the “DJs” out there. 

Start an Etsy Shop: Have a passion for crafting? There is literally a space for every craft and people are willing to pay for practically anything hand made.

Kindle Publishing/E-books: In the era of e-readers, there are more opportunities than ever to publish short stories, novels, and everything in between.

Freelance Writing: Anybody can make a steady income from freelance writing in their area of expertise such as personal finance, health & lifestyle, entertainment, marketing, etc. You already have experience writing research papers and college essays, so the transition may be smaller than you expect.

Podcasting: Do you enjoy talking and often get into debate with your friends? You just might have a side hustle opportunity in podcasting! Getting a podcast up and running is fairly simple and cheap. Once you get things rolling you can start reaching out to advertisers.

Babysit: From your teen years on, your neighbors called you when they were sick of their kids and needed a night out. Now that you’re in college, you’re even more experienced. 

Coaching Sports: Were you a decent high school athlete? Or understand the basic strategy of a specific sport? You could get a job coaching! The pay is not the best but seeing the smile on a kid’s face you helped to improve is priceless. 

Tutor: Do you find a specific class easy or excel at a particular subject? Consider tutoring a freshman or even one of your peers that might be struggling in a class you found easy. Check with the employment office or a department head at your university, or even other local schools, for opportunities.

Housesit: First, make sure there are no incriminating party pictures on Instagram. Clean? Now go on Craigslist and look for people who need a house sitter while they’re out of town. Go above and beyond on your first few house sitting gigs and they will for sure become repeat customers.

Lifeguard: Do you fins under water? Keeping people safe is no easy task, and being constantly at attention and watching the water can be surprisingly challenging. But if you water, what better way to get paid for hanging out by the pool than life guarding?

Painting Service: Most homeowners would rather burn the house down than paint it themselves. But most painters are speedy! Undercut them all and get yourself some work painting.

Snow Removal: Crazy fact, according to Hollywood, the #1 cause of heart attacks is shoveling snow. If you live in a snowy area, grab your shovel and snowblower and start walking around any neighborhood, business will be booming!

Lawn Work: If you’ve got a lawn mower and some gas you could make some a serious side hustle money mowing grass and front yard maintenance. Sure, there are big landscaping companies that do it, but a lot of times your neighbors would rather kick you some cash than have to set up a contract with a more expensive company.

Mover: Living in a college town, there’s always a lot of students moving in and out of apartments, houses, condos, dorms. Someone who can get a mini fridge full of beer down a flight of stairs will have a bright future in getting paid to move.

Mobile Detailing/Car Wash: Do you have OCD when it comes to detailing your car? Your car is so immaculate, so crisp, so clean, that all your friends want you to do theirs. They won’t be the only ones. Bring the clean to your customers for added value.

Become a Textbook Referral Champion
Sites like give you reward points for referring friends. With your points you can redeem practically any gift card imaginable. Every student needs to get textbooks so why not get rewarded for it?!

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