22 Side Jobs for College Students to Try in 2023
Table of Contents
- 22 Side Jobs for College Students to Try in 2023
- #1 Selling or Renting Property
- #2 E-Commerce/Drop-Shipping
- #3 Ridesharing
- #4 Reselling Online
- #5 Fitness Training and Coaching
- #6 Freelance Work/Consulting
- #7 Tutoring or Teaching
- #8 Babysitting, Nannying and Care Taking
- #9 Computer Repair
- #10 Direct Sales
- #11 House Cleaning and Repairs
- #12 Landscaping and Gardening
- #13 Music or Dance Performance
- #14 Photography and Videography
- #15 Logo Design
- #16 Use TaskRabbit
- #17 Freelance Article Writer
- #18 Virtual Assistant
- #19 Social Media Manager
- #20 Video and Photo Editor
- #21 Delivery (Food and Packages)
- #22 E-Learning Courses
- How To Turn Your Side Job To a Full-Time Gig
Just a little extra money from one side job can go a long way these days. Supplemental income can be used towards paying off student loans, saving for a holiday, or putting a down payment on your new home. These days, your side job can even earn you more money than a regular job, and over the last few years, so many people have made their side hustle their full-time job. Depending on your needs, skills, and availability, there are a few good jobs you can try as a side job today. Who knows, these side jobs may turn out to be your full-time gig and highest paying job.
At Scholaroo, we’ve done some research and made a list of 22 of the best side jobs for college students that pay a lot. We also give you advice on how to start each side gig and share how you can turn your side job into your full-time job.
22 Side Jobs for College Students to Try in 2023
|Side Jobs||Median Monthly Income|
|1. Reselling Online||$7,162/month|
|2. E-Learning Courses||$5,989/month|
|3. Freelance Work/Consulting||$5,852/month|
|4. Freelance Article Writer||$5,577/month|
|5. Selling or Renting Property||$5,323/month|
|6. Logo Design||$4,594/month|
|7. Direct Sales||$4,542/month|
|8. Video and Photo Editor||$4,519/month|
|9. Virtual Assistant||$4,494/month|
|10. Social Media Manager||$4,493/month|
|11. Music or Dance Performance||$4,360/month|
|12. Delivery (Food and Packages)||$3,949/month|
|13. Tutoring or Teaching||$3,777/month|
|14. Photography and Videography||$3,760/month|
|15. Computer Repair||$3,724/month|
|17. Fitness Training and Coaching||$3,294/month|
|19.Babysitting, Nannying and Care Taking||$2,987/month and $2,771/month|
|20. House Cleaning and Repairs||$2,663/month and $3,942/month|
|21. Landscaping and Gardening||$2,652/month|
|22. Use TaskRabbit||$2,000/month|
Table giving side jobs for college students and their median monthly income, from highest median monthly income to lowest median monthly income per side job.
#1 Selling or Renting Property
Minimum to Maximum per year: $18,000 – $139,000/year
Median monthly income: $5,323/month
Median hourly rate: $31/hour
How to start: First, begin by getting your real estate license. Figure out the licensing and education requirements in your state, and get yours. Second, you need to join the National Association of Realtors (NAR). Membership to NAR is a requirement, but it will also prove to be beneficial for networking and meeting fellow realtors. Third, you cannot be a real estate agent without joining a brokerage. A brokerage is an agency that employs real estate agents. It is difficult to find a brokerage that will support a part-time agent, but with some persistence, you should find one. Once you have completed all three of these, you can begin to prepare a business plan, find ways to generate leads on properties that may be for sale, and figure out a marketing strategy to reach out to potential clients. This side job opportunity requires persistence and planning but will rake in extra money for you over time.
Drop-shopping is a kind of e-commerce business effort that has become increasingly popular. Typically when a customer wishes to order an item from a business, they place an order directly with that company through their website. With the drop-shipping business model, a customer would place an order with a reseller and the reseller passes the order along to the supplier to fulfill. The reseller operates a website that lists all the products for sale (but they do not actually own these). When they make a sale they pass the order to the supplier, along with the payment for the item. The supplier then sends the package directly to the customer.
A side hustle in drop-shipping is easy to begin because of the low start-up cost compared to a larger business, with this you would only have to focus on sales. The biggest challenge is that the drop-shipping market is quite competitive and the best way to make money from this is to have a niche area and reliable suppliers.
Minimum to Maximum per year: $20,000 – $80,000/year
Median monthly income: $3,554/month
Median hourly rate: $20,51/hour
How to start: First, begin with some research. What products will you sell? Can you work out a price for each product that will generate profits? Thorough research is the best way to start your drop-shipping business because it is very competitive. Second, build an online store and test its functioning. If you don’t plan on starting a shop from scratch, you can also purchase one from Exchange. Third, find a reliable supplier for your products and begin purchasing. The start-up cost for a drop-shipping company can be quite expensive, so your preparedness and research are the best way to avoid a major loss in the beginning.
Ridesharing services such as Uber and Lyft are one of the best side jobs for college students because of their flexibility. Uber drivers can make money in their free time using resources they already have such as a car, smartphone, and a driver’s license. With just a short application through the Uber app, you can start your side hustle in less than a month.
Minimum to Maximum per year: $14,000 – $74,500/year
Median monthly income: $3,176/month
Median hourly rate: $18,33/hour
How to start: Easy, just sign up through a ride-sharing app. Once you have opened a profile, your vehicle, license, and criminal record will be checked by Uber.
#4 Reselling Online
Reselling is a form of drop-shipping, but in this case, you would need to source the products from a variety of suppliers and make them available in one place. If you can get your reselling business going, it can be one of the most profitable side jobs for college students out there. This market was once known for thrifters and antique collectors, but now reselling is popular for those selling limited edition sneakers, second-hand handbags, and clothing items from big brands. With this business, you would purchase or source a product, then sell it at a markup to customers online through platforms such as eBay, Shopify, Etsy, and Depop. Some resellers also sell their own used items, so if you have some collectibles, high-quality or rare items then this side job is for you.
Minimum to Maximum per year: $14,500 – $317,000/year
Median monthly income: $7,162/month
Median hourly rate: $41,32/hour
How to start: Begin by determining what kind of products you will sell and do some market research. Find out what people love, lack or need and try to fill that gap in the market. After this, you can source your product, and upload high-quality pictures of your product on Facebook Marketplace, eBay, or Craigslist with detailed descriptions. Although this should get you going, it is also important to market yourself and your products, so use social media to reach out to potential customers.
#5 Fitness Training and Coaching
This side job is a great way to maintain your fitness and help others become fit too. If you have developed a knack for fitness you can use your skills, knowledge, and experience to help others by becoming a fitness trainer or coach. In some states, this requires certification which will also boost your reliability with potential clients or employers. The certification from the American Council on Exercise costs $600 and $800 from the National Academy of Sports Medicine. This may be the biggest expense to your start-up, but it is necessary to get some sort of certification. There are plenty of certifications available. As a fitness trainer, you help others get fit, but you are also a business owner and can earn a lot of money with this side job.
Minimum to Maximum per year: $18,000 – $73,000/year
Median monthly income: $3,294/month
Median hourly rate: $19,00/hour
How to start: Begin by getting some sort of certification to be a fitness trainer or instructor. Then, apply to be a part-time fitness instructor at your local gym. Build your online brand, business, website, or social media and market yourself and your skills to people. Use social media, paper pamphlets, email adverts, or YouTube for advertising. Apply to be a part-time fitness instructor at your local gym.
#6 Freelance Work/Consulting
There is a difference between freelance work and consulting services. The former works independently by selling work or services by the hour, day, or job, usually without any intention to pursue some long-term arrangement with an employer. Consultants get paid to provide professional and expert advice in a particular field. You can use either of these as your side job based on your skill and expertise level. You could work as a strategy consultant, management consultant, operations consultant, financial advisory consultant, human resource consultant, or IT consultant, among others, depending on your expertise. As a freelancer you could work as a developer, designer, writer, marketing professional, translator, accountant, or HR manager. If your skills and expertise are in one of these fields then use your skills to start your own business or freelancing work.
Minimum to Maximum per year: $17,500 – $160,500
Median monthly income: $5,852/month
Median hourly rate: $33,76/hour
How to start: Decide on a specialization, this will help inform other decisions about your work and services. Then set a rate for your services. Individuals and businesses will acquire your services, not skills, so you must set rates for your services. Build your online brand through social media, LinkedIn, or a business website. With this, start applying for part-time jobs!
#7 Tutoring or Teaching
Tutoring or teaching a school subject, high school SAT and ACT Prep, or a language is an excellent option to earn extra money. If you are a teacher or someone with good teaching skills, this side job is easy to start and may start earning you more money than your full-time job. You can get started by registering as a tutor on sites such as TutorMe, Tutor.com, or Skooli. Alternatively, you can begin marketing your own tutoring and teaching business locally.
Minimum to Maximum per year: $17,500 – $100,000/year
Median monthly income:$3,777/month
Median hourly rate: $21,79/hour
How to start: You will first need to identify your client and market your services to people in your community. If you plan on tutoring students for their high school SAT/ACT or teaching English as a foreign language to foreign learners, then you may consider getting certified first. You can either buy a popular tutoring franchise or start your own from your home. For online tutoring, you can start by applying for part-time tutoring or teaching jobs to start.
#8 Babysitting, Nannying and Care Taking
This is one of the most popular side jobs for college students and even those studying in high school. If you are responsible and have good experience working with children, taking up a side gig in caretaking, nannying and babysitting is an excellent option.
Minimum to Maximum per year: $958 – $7,375/year babysitting and $13,500 – $52,000/year as a nanny
Median monthly income: $2,987/month babysitting and $2,771/month as a nanny
Median hourly rate: $17,00/$15,99/hour as a nanny
How to start: To get started with this, you can begin by contacting families that you know. Alternatively, you can sign onto nannying sites and get a background check completed.
#9 Computer Repair
You don’t need a qualification in computer science or IT to set up a computer repair business. If you can learn to clean, repair or replace any hardware or software you can create a simple business that provides this service. This is an in-demand service, as many people have devices they need assistance with whether the device is damaged, slow, or has viruses. This side gig is flexible but can also turn into a full-time gig as you grow your business. This is a highly competitive industry but you can build a strong client base over time by excelling in your work – word of mouth and easy access is the best way to market your business.
Minimum to Maximum per year: $22,500 – $88,500/year
Median monthly income: $3,724/month
Median hourly rate: $21,49/hour
How to start: Identify the services you can provide and market them to friends, family, and your neighbors. You may consider getting your computer repair and IT certifications. Then, actively build your client base and upskill yourself to give more services.
#10 Direct Sales
Businesses such as Avon, Tupperware, and Herbalife are an example of direct sales businesses. Direct sale businesses help people earn money on their own schedule. In this model, you would sell products directly to the consumers/customers. Sometimes, you work on commission and earn a percentage of the profit on the items you sell. You can also earn a percentage of the profit, from sales made by your recruits (not their membership). Getting into direct sales relies on your own sales skills, and commitment. It is quite easy to get into and can also earn you a lot of money over time. This is one of those side jobs for college students that can be turned into a full-time business gig in the future.
Minimum to Maximum per year: $15,500 – $114,500/year
Median monthly income: $4,542/month
Median hourly rate: $26,21/hour
How to start: Just sign up for a direct sales business like Avon, Marykay, or Epicure. There are hundreds of direct sales companies you can sign up for.
#11 House Cleaning and Repairs
This side job is excellent for someone who enjoys or is good at cleaning, or someone who is a nifty tinkerer. It’s relatively easy to set up a house cleaning or repairs business and market this service. By gathering a few supplies and tools and talking to a few people in your neighborhood you could start your own business within a day. A business like this is also easy to grow over time, and you could go from making $1,000 a month to having a business that makes a profit of over $100,000 per year by marketing to other businesses, homes, schools, hotels, motels, Airbnb owners, etc.
Minimum to Maximum per year: $16,000 – $54,500/year for house cleaning, $20,500 – $81,000/year for house repairs
Median monthly income: $2,663/month for house cleaning. $3,942/month for house repairs
Median hourly rate: $15,37/hour house cleaning. $22,74/hour for house repairs
How to start: You first need to decide on the services you would like to provide and set your rates. Then get some products and tools you may need for your work. Once you’ve done those steps, start building a client base by informing your friends, family, and neighbors of your services.
#12 Landscaping and Gardening
Lawn-care services are a good way to make money, you might have known a kid in your high school who would mow lawns for their neighbors to make some pocket money. Well, this is still a viable option for any person to make money. You can start your own landscaping business or sign up for a business like GreenPal to get started. A business like this does require some equipment that you could rent or purchase to start up. The biggest challenge with this business is that the work can be seasonal and you may get less work in winter – you can provide other services during this season such as tree care, tree removal, vegetable gardening or snow plowing, or garden coaching. This part-time operation can be turned into a full-time business with a good plan and marketing.
Minimum to Maximum per year: $18,500 – $46,000/year
Median monthly income: $2,652/month
Median hourly rate: $15,30
How to start: First, decide on the services you would like to provide and set your rates. Second, get some products and tools you may need for your work. Third, build a client base by informing your friends, family and neighbors, and nearby communities of your services.
#13 Music or Dance Performance
If you have musical or performance talent then take it up as a side gig and earn money from your talents. Perform at kid’s parties and weddings, join a band or dance group and play live shows and performances. If you aren’t interested in performing, then you can still earn money from your talents by teaching music or dance, or selling your music and routines. The amount of money you can make from this side gig varies but it is a great way to keep up with your hobbies and interests, while also earning money.
Minimum to Maximum per year: $11,500 – $121,500/year
Median monthly income: $4,360/month
Median hourly rate: $24.58
How to start: First, decide on the services you would like to provide and set your rates. If you are performing at special functions, teaching people to dance, or performing at bars, clubs, and restaurants you need to decide on the rates for your performances. Second, market yourself and your services through social media, or to friends, family, and neighbors. Third, apply for jobs, call-backs, and audition for bands, dance groups, and performances. Fourth, get some equipment you may need for events such as DJ equipment. Lastly, practice and share your talents with others to get people’s interest.
#14 Photography and Videography
Starting a photography and videography business is another one of the enjoyable side jobs for college students that you can do to bring in extra income. The startup can be quite costly because camera equipment is quite expensive but this profession is in high demand today and can be turned into a full-time profession. You may require training to upskill your talent, editing, and videography skills but practicing is the best way to learn.
Minimum to Maximum per year: $15,000 – $103,000/year
Median monthly income:$3,760/month
Median hourly rate: $21,69/hour
How to start: To get started, get basic equipment, start practicing, create a portfolio and start marketing to friends and family. Setting up a social media account and offering your services locally will also help you advertise your business.
#15 Logo Design
Sites such as Upwork and Freelancer offer lists of jobs for people to design logos for different businesses. This type of side job can be done part-time, remotely, and has flexible hours. So if you have good design skills and have access to platforms that can create designs you can sell your designs or get jobs designing. This is a competitive side job, but by mastering your designs and creating a signature style you can earn good money through this. This side job is also easy to expand, and through upskilling, you can offer more design services to businesses.
Minimum to Maximum per year: $16,500 – $104,500/year
Median monthly income: $4,594/month
Median hourly rate: $26,51/hour
How to start: The best way to get started is to build a portfolio to advertise your skills, and then apply for jobs using this. You may need to also purchase applications for designing like Adobe Illustrator, Adobe InDesign, Sketch, or CorelDRAW.
#16 Use TaskRabbit
Using TaskRabbit to earn money has become more popular over the years. On this app, you earn money by completing everyday errands and tasks for people in your community. Sign up on TaskRabbit.com and select the tasks you are willing to do, then get matched with people who are requesting that service and get paid after doing the job. You set your own hourly rate but are given the minimum hourly rate you can charge per task. This is a flexible opportunity that you can take advantage of.
Minimum to Maximum per year: $100,000/year
Median monthly income: Over $2,000/month
Median hourly rate: $35,00/hour
How to start: Just sign up on TaskRabbit, decide on the services you are interested in, and start working.
#17 Freelance Article Writer
Freelance content or article writing is an excellent side job for good writers. Like most freelance opportunities, you can apply to different job advertisements seeking a freelancer or start a business and advertise your skills to various businesses and organizations. The hours with this work are flexible and you can take on jobs based on your availability. This side job would only require some resources you probably already have, namely a laptop and internet access.
Minimum to Maximum per year: $11,000 – $269,500/year
Median monthly income: $5,577/month
Median hourly rate: $32,18/hour
How to start: If you have the skills and experience, just start applying for part-time jobs and build a good rapport with the companies you work with. Then use this experience as a selling point for your next clients and jobs you apply for.
#18 Virtual Assistant
Even without any experience as a personal or office or executive assistant, you can set up a business that provides assistant services to help you earn money. A virtual assistant is hired/contracted to do administrative tasks which may vary per client or contract. This kind of job is customizable and flexible and only really requires highly organized individuals.
Virtual assistant jobs can be very versatile in nature as they have quite an extended job description. Virtual assistants can offer email and calendar management, customer service via email or phone, and any accounting and booking services too. Other services you could provide are email newsletters, marketing, blog writing, ghostwriting, affiliate marketing, and the like. There are also more specialized services such as website design, proofreading, editing, or data entry that you can offer through your business.
The success of this side job really depends on the service you provide and the quality of your service. To start up, you can begin by investing in some of the tools you need for your business, some software tools, or taking up a short course to give you entry experience. What is very important though is to find clients or sign up for a successful existing virtual-assistant company.
Minimum to Maximum per year: $16,000 – $131,500/year
Median monthly income: $4,494/month
Median hourly rate: $25,93/hour
How to start: If you have the skills and experience, just start applying for part-time jobs and build a good rapport with the individuals and companies you work with. Then use this experience, as a selling point for your next clients and jobs you apply for.
#19 Social Media Manager
Social media marketing is essential for brands and businesses, companies without a designated marketing department will typically outsource their marketing efforts. You could help brands and individuals market themselves on social media by working as a social media manager (part-time) or setting up a social media marketing business/agency. So if you have a knack for social media, and can follow and set trends, then you should consider starting this side gig.
Over the last few years, social media managers have sprung up out of nowhere and the market is quite saturated. But there is still enough space for you and your business because this skill is in high demand. There is also plenty of opportunity to expand your business and make it a full-time operation once you’ve built a good client base.
Minimum to Maximum per year: $16,500 – $99,000/year
Median monthly income: $4,493/month
Median hourly rate: $25,92/hour
How to start: If you have the skills and experience, just start applying for part-time jobs and build a good rapport with the individuals and companies you work with. Then use this experience as a selling point for your next clients and jobs you apply for. If you do not have any skills and experience, get some! Get certifications, briefly volunteer or assist a small business owner you know for free, then add their success to your portfolio.
#20 Video and Photo Editor
Video and photo editing is an excellent side gig for any person with the equipment and software. Learning how to edit videos and photos can be quite difficult – it requires quite technical and artistic skills. But more and more people want videos for their special occasions, trips, their social media and business promotions, etc. They also want their photos edited, but they are not prepared to pay in the thousands for this. Your video and photo editing business can be geared towards people like this.
Minimum to Maximum per year: $17,500 – $133,000/year
Median monthly income: $4,519/month
Median hourly rate: $26,07/hour
How to start: To start off you would require camera equipment, a computer, some software tools, and skill. So if you can learn one style of editing at a time, over time your business will grow and provide more services. You could also market your business to photographers and videographers who may not have editing skills.
#21 Delivery (Food and Packages)
This is one of the most flexible side jobs for college students. Through companies such as Roadie, GoShare, DoorDash, Uber Eats, Instacart, Grubhub, Postmates, and Amazon you can work flexible hours delivering food and packages to people. This is a great way to participate in the gig economy where you do not require any start-up money. The income you get from deliveries can boost your monthly income and you can pick up more work when you need more money. To work in delivery, you only need to sign up through the business app or website, and you begin work as early as the next day for some places.
Minimum to Maximum per year: $19,500 – $124,000/year
Median monthly income: $3,949/month
Median hourly rate: $22,79/hour
How to start: Just sign up through the app, once your license and vehicle have been approved, you will begin work.
#22 E-Learning Courses
If you have a cool skill or knowledge in a topic you would like to teach others, try creating an e-learning course to help you earn an extra income. To start you can build a course to help someone gain skills you have, such as a course in music, photography, cooking, writing, marketing, or researching, among others. However, keep in mind that this is one of the side jobs for college students that does not ensure regular income. In some cases, you might not be able to earn anything for a very long time too.
Minimum to Maximum per year: $16,500 – $124,000/year
Median monthly income: $5,989/month
Median hourly rate: $34,56/hour
How to start: Assuming you have a skill you would like to instruct others in, you can begin by signing up as an instructor on an app like Skillshare or Udemy. These apps also help you build your e-learning course for free. If you would like to work more independently, email marketing is your best option. Start by marketing your business over social media, YouTube, and LinkedIn. Then, prompt people to sign up with their email on your website for a free online course (shortened version of your e-learning course). Then encourage them to purchase your e-learning course to learn more.
How To Turn Your Side Job To a Full-Time Gig
With any side gig/small business you could start it would be extremely rare if it became an overnight success. Developing any of the ideas here into a successful business will take time, careful planning, and consideration. There is nothing wrong with starting small, but you need to set goals for your new business/side job. If you would like to turn your side job into a full-time opportunity then here are a few tips for you.
Tip 1: Keep your business finances organized
While you may have started with just wanting extra income, this motive should change when working through your business full-time. The more your business grows, the more organized you should be about your finances.
Tip 2: Scale your business
You should be finding ways to scale your business/side job in its early stages. To do this, plan to hire employees and freelancers. Invest some of the funds back into your business and apply for business grants. This is one way to turn a small business into a full-time operation.
Tip 3: Keep learning
If your side gig is in computer or household repairs, writing, editing, or any skill-related work then you should keep learning as you go. If you keep learning a new skill or adding to the ones you already have, then you can offer better and more quality skills to your clients. Using short-term learning courses, or taking up part-time study is a great way to do this.
Tip 4: Give more time to your side job/gig
If you can see that by dedicating more time to your side gig than your full-time job you could make more money, then that’s your sign to get into your side job full-time. For example, if you work as a virtual assistant, logo designer, or video/photo editor, get paid more per hour, and can secure a good client base then consider dedicating yourself to these jobs instead. You don’t even have to go out of the house for many jobs as they can be done online from home.
Tip 5: Build a large client base
With a business involving house cleaning services, computer repairs, or designing, one of the best ways to expand your part-time operation is to offer your services to other businesses. Instead of relying on family or individuals in your neighborhood, market your business to other businesses. You can always quote them more than you could an individual. Make an effort to build a wider client base, the word-of-mouth recommendation can help set you up for success.