21 easy ways to make money in your spare time

make money spare time

We should all make the most of our spare time, and what better way to use it than to make money?

Whether you want to build a lasting business, start a profitable side hustle, or just make some pocket money, there are lots of ways of doing so! So let's find out 21 great ways that we can all make money in our spare time.

1. Become a secret shopper

Mystery shopping companies are always looking for people just like you to join their team. When you become a secret shopper, you will be paid to visit stores, restaurants, or banks, and you will be assigned a mission.

Your job will be to measure the quality of the customer service you receive in each store, and report your findings back to the mystery shopping company.

You may need to take photos, ask the staff questions, report your waiting times etc, and then fill out a questionnaire to record your experience.

The questionnaire will be handed over to each company to help them improve their customers experience, and you'll get paid at the end of it.

How much can you earn?

It's not uncommon to earn 5 figures by mystery shopping, if you use every available opportunity. This means using your weekends, your lunch breaks, and stopping off at shops during your commute.

We all love shopping, and mystery shopping is a great way of spicing it up whilst earning some extra money. Check out sites like Jobs2shop, or secret shopper to get started.

2. Get ads placed on your car

Why not check out Carvertise in your spare time? You could get an advertisement placed on your car and make $100 - $200 per month!

All you'll need is a clean driving record, a clean car, and you must drive at least 30 miles per day so that people will see the ad.

Companies also offer bonuses for people who are willing to park their cars in certain places at certain times. This can earn you an extra $30 per hour!

Ads will remain on your car for 3 - 6 months, so this is a great little way of making some passive income.

3. Make money from YouTube

Most of us have a YouTube channel, but did you know you could use it to make money in your spare time?

Simply upload interesting videos, reach 1000 subscribers and hit the minimum watch time. You can then run ads on your videos, and make money every time anyone clicks the ad, or watches it in full.

You can make a ten minute video and edit it in less than an hour, so this is another great way of making some extra cash.

Ads aren't the only way to make money from your videos though. You can use other strategies like affiliate marketing to increase the amounts you earn.

Learn all about affiliate marketing here

4. Make money doing everyday tasks

You can actually get paid by doing normal everyday tasks for people that either can't, or don't have the time to do it themselves.

So if you have enough spare time to help out with a little garden work, flat pack assembly, house cleaning, house moves, or general handyman tasks, you could be making extra money in no time.

Check out sites like Task Rabbit, where you'll be able to advertise your services, so that people can easily find you. You'll also be able to search for local jobs, and then reach out to customers if you think you can help.

5. Invest the money you have

Initially, this may sound like the opposite of what you want to do. Why would you put money away into investments if you want to make more money?

This is actually something that can make you a lot of money, with very little effort. Many people have made well over a million dollars simply by investing their money, and watching it grow.

You can do this very quickly in your spare time, and there are no skills required whatsoever. All you need to do is invest money each month, or whenever you have any spare money, and you could make over 6% interest on it.

Keep investing, and reinvesting the interest and dividends you receive, and eventually you'll have hundreds of thousands of dollars, maybe even a million dollars!

Find out how to start investing, and how to make a million dollars by doing so here.

6. Get Paid to Workout

Most of us need more exercise, but we all know exercising is super boring. If only there was a good intensive, like money. Well, you may be surprised to find out that you can actually get paid to exercise!

With sites like Healthy Wage, you can enter challenges, and place bets, and if you win by reaching your weight loss goal you'll receive cash prizes of up to $10,000.

If betting isn't for you, check out ebates to get cash back for your online fitness related purchases.

For example, you could get $5 by joining Weight Watchers, or 12% back on athletic shoe purchases from Shoes.com.

7. Get yourself a cashback credit card

Every time you buy something using a cashback credit card, you will earn money. This can be up to 5% cashback, and could amount to hundreds of dollars per year depending on how much you spend.

This is a great way of making extra money in your spare time, if you're sensible with it. But it's easy to get into trouble with a credit card, so when you buy, be sure to pay it off in full each month to avoid charges, and don't withdraw cash if there is a charge for doing so.

8. Start proofreading

By registering on sites like People Per Hour, you'll be able to offer freelance services to people around the world. A great service you can choose to do in your spare time is proofreading.

Simply create a gig offering to proofread and edit articles, dissertations, website pages, emails etc, and charge as much as you like. The going rate is about $10 per 1000 words, which is easy money.

Lots of people including business owners, bloggers, and email marketers simply don't have the time to proofread, so they will pay people to do this. You could get returning clients who offer you regular gigs, and you could make more money by taking on multiple clients per day.

9. Take surveys

Signing up to survey sites is quick and easy, and some surveys pay really well. Companies are always looking to improve their businesses, so they run regular surveys that you can fill out in your spare time.

Look for the surveys that are sent to you in the post, as they will usually make you the most money. Simply fill it out and send it back to get paid!

10. Shop on cashback websites

Similar to earning cashback on your cashback credit card, you can also earn cashback on purchases you make online.

We all do a heck of a lot of online shopping, so make the most of it by getting a little back. Use sites like shop at home to get cashback on every purchase, and you can also get a $10 welcome bonus!

11. Make money playing video games

This may seem far fetched, but it's true! You can make a living by playing video games in your spare time.

A popular platform for gamers to make money is Twitch. You simply stream your game while your fans watch and chat about it! You'll make money from advertising revenue, subscriptions, and you may even get tips from your fans.

It sounds simple, and it really is; but before you can make decent money you will need to work hard to build a following. Successful gamers will have an engaging persona that fans want to connect with, and the ability to make it fun and exiting to watch, usually by using voice over.

12. Sell your snaps

Millions of people around the worlds are looking for photos, and your collection may contain just what they're looking for.

People want images for their homes, businesses, websites, blogs, and videos, and they are searching for what you may have right now. Most of us have thousands of photos stored on out phones, and computers, so start uploading them now!

Find out exactly how to start selling your photos here.

13. Become a translator

Translation is quick and easy, and a top way to make money in your spare time.

Businesses are constantly receiving emails in languages that they can't read, and Google translate simply isn't good enough. If you can speak or read a different language, you could offer yourself to businesses as a freelance translator.

Create a gig on sites like Fiverr, or People per Hour, by telling clients what language you can translate. Specify how many words you're willing to translate, and you could earn $10 for 500 - 1000 words.

14. Blog about anything

Whatever you're into, there are other people that want to hear about it. People will search the web and find your blog, and this is a great opportunity to make money from them.

You could use affiliate marketing, you could run ads on your blog, or you could sell digital and physical products.

Learn how to start your own blog step by step here.

15. Sign up to Swagbucks

When you join Swagbucks you can earn points on things you normally do online, from watching videos to completing short surveys.

When you've stacked up plenty of points, you'll be able to exchange them for cash and gift cards. For example 16,000 points will get you $100 transferred straight to your PayPal account.

So how do you earn Swagbucks points? 

There are lots of ways to earn points, from watching videos that you are sent, to downloading apps. You can also earn referral points by telling your friends, and you'll also get a whole 10% of your friends earnings for as long as they’re a Swagbucks member.

Find out more at Swagbucks here.

16. Rent out your belongings

You can rent out anything you have to make money in your spare time, all you need is five minutes to list your things, and a few minutes to hand them over.

Some great ideas of things you can rent out to people are:

  • Your bike
  • Your car
  • A driveway
  • A room in your house
  • Your whole house
  • Storage space
  • Office space
  • Garden equipment like lawnmowers, chainsaws, hedge cutters, etc.
  • Tools
  • Cameras

There are websites that you can sign up to, that let people rent out all of the above. For example, you can rent out your bike on Spinlister, or a room on Airbnb.

So have a think about what you have that people may wish to rent for a short period. This could either save them buying their own, or it could help them out while they're away from home, or on holiday. List everything you have and start making some money from it!

17. drive for dollars

With sites like Uber and Lyft, you can offer up yourself as a taxi driver whenever you want to make some money. All you need to do is signup, get approved, get the app, and start accepting passengers.

You can easily make a full time income from this, or you could stick to doing it in your spare time.

18. Deliver food

Fast food joints are always looking for delivery drivers, and the good news is that you no longer have to go searching for work all over town.

If you're 18 or older, you can signup to sites like DoorDash where you can find work in your area, you can then set your own schedule and start making money in your own time.

Fortunately for people who work full time, most people order food in the evenings. So this is a great way to make money in the spare time you have after work.

19. Sell your designs

If you like creating your own artwork, and fancy having it printed and sold worldwide then you could make some serious money in your spare time.

Sites like Teespring and Merch by Amazon let you upload your own designs to have them printed onto t-shirts. The company does all the hard work, like printing and shipping, and you get royalties for every t-shirt that's sold!

If you want something a little more diverse, you could also signup to CafePress. You'll still be able to sell t-shirts, but your designs can also be printed onto hats, phone cases, mugs, magnets and more.

20. Get paid to speak

If you fancy doing a bit of voice over work in your spare time, take a look at Voices.com.

Simply post a short clip of your voice with a description of what you have to offer, and people will be able to invite you to work for them. You can also audition for publicly posted jobs, to get to work immediately!

21. Get paid to write

There are lots of ways that you can get paid to write, and my favourites are eBooks and freelancing.

You can self-publish an eBook and sell it on amazon KDP, your blog, or many other self-publishing websites. This is a great little side hustle that can be completed in your spare time, but it will make money continuously for many years to come.

If you prefer shorter writing tasks then freelance writing is a great option. Post gigs on Fiverr and Upwork, and people will buy your services based on what you can offer, and how many words you're prepared to write. Generally, you can make $10 - $20 for 1000 words.

Learn all about making money on Fiverr, with eight great money making ideas here.

Start making money in your spare time!

When it comes to making money in your spare time, you've got plenty of options. Depending on how much free time you get, you may be able to start making money from more than one of these ideas, and you may even be able to turn them into a full time income!

Have fun with your choice, and enjoy the extra cash!