According to the National Retail Federation, the average amount a consumer spends during the holiday season is over $800, and this number is growing every year. The holiday season can be a burden on your wallet, so it doesn’t hurt to look for extra ways to earn some cash. If you start early enough you may be able to splurge a little extra on gifts for your friends and family.
It’s not uncommon for people to take second jobs or side gigs during the busy holiday season. Between buying gifts for all your friends, family members, and even co-workers, every dollar will count. The same report from National Retail Federation shows that retailers fill between 700,000-750,000 new season positions every year, and the hiring usually starts in September. Here are five ways you can make extra cash before the holidays.
Rent Out an Extra Bedroom
If you have a spare bedroom that’s not being used, consider renting it out to travelers. AirBnb has been a popular way for people to make extra cash. You have the option to rent out your entire place, a private room, or a shared room. Setting up an account is pretty straight forward. Snap a couple pictures of your place, write a catchy description, and list your price. The best part about this is you can dictate exactly when and how much you want to charge. However, AirBnb will recommend price tips to help you get more bookings.
Sell Your Skillset
Companies like TaskRabbit or Upwork allow almost anyone with a specialized skillset to list their services online. TaskRabbit is great for handyman type of tasks, while Upwork is a great resource for freelancers to either take on design or writing work. As a freelance writer, the opportunities are endless. You can proofread papers or ghost write for other companies. If you’re more booksmart than hands on, you can check out a company called Wyzant and apply to be an online tutor.
Apply for a Seasonal Job at a Retail Store
As mentioned above, retailers are always looking for extra help. If you’re planning to go this route, start now! According to Monster.com, the best opportunities will be at large discount stores such as Target & Wal-Mart, but even stores that focus on transportation will need extra workers in their shipping facilities (FedEx/UPS). On top of making extra cash, you also might be able to score some employee discounts to help you save even more money!
Sell Unwanted Gift Cards
According to CNBC, American households have an average of $300 in unused gift cards. If you haven’t used it yet, chances are you probably won’t use it in the future or in the worst case scenario, lose it. Selling your gift cards is a breeze. One of my favorite places to sell a gift card is on Craigslist or Raise.com. You might actually have gift cards lying around that you forgot you even had, so it’s probably best to empty out your wallet and check your drawers (don’t forget electronic gift cards too).
Consider Uber or Lyft on the Side
Lastly but not least, there’s always the option to drive for Uber & Lyft on the side. You can set your own hours anytime of the week. Consider doing this right after work or during the morning rush hour to make more money during peak hours. The best part about this is that there’s zero upfront investment needed to get started.
If none of these are viable options for you, you can also check out this huge list of ways to make extra money on the side as well.