College is an exciting time, but it also often comes with financial hardship. Finding ways to make money in college helps to pay for the daily bills such as food, gas, textbooks, and spending money.
By putting in the effort now, you can avoid leaving college with a mountain of student loan debt and stress!
And luckily, there are many ways to make money online and in the real world, in your spare time, even when you have little work experience.
So, if you’re a college student needing extra money, read on to learn about the best college side hustles.
Best Ways to Make Money in College
Let’s take a look at 15 simple and fun ways to make money in college.
1. Start a Niche Blog
Blogging is one of the best ways to make passive income on the side.
While you won’t make money immediately, with a little time and effort a blog can bring in a healthy income that’ll pay for your textbooks, food, beer tabs, plus much more.
Once you’ve decided on a niche, choose a blogging platform to make money from. You can even find sites that allow you to set up a blog free, so you can see if it’s right for you.
If you have no idea how to start, consider taking a course such as the Authority Site System (TASS).
This is one of the best courses online today, teaching people how to build and scale profitable websites.
Learn more in this Authority Site System review.
2. Affiliate Marketing
Affiliate marketing is an easy way to make money online by promoting a product or service you know is good.
To get started, you need to:
- Find a product for sale
- Apply to be an affiliate for it
- Receive a unique affiliate link
- Decide where you’ll promote your link
Next, you can start sharing your link, and when someone clicks on it and makes a purchase, you receive a commission, which is a percentage of the sale agreed with the vendor.
A good place to promote your affiliate links is on your social media accounts like Pinterest, Twitter, and YouTube.
These platforms are free to use, so you can start affiliate marketing with no money or website.
3. Freelance Writing
Are you a decent writer? Many companies and brands need a freelance writer to help them create content for blogs, marketing campaigns, email content, and social media posts.
To get started, create a writing portfolio that you can show prospective clients.
They’ll want to see that you can write to a good standard, which could decide whether they give you the job over someone else. So you'll want to start using Grammarly and Hemingwayapp when you write.
Store your sample content for free on sites like Medium or JournoPortfolio.
Writing pays from $0.01/word on the lower end and up to $1/word when you have more experience.
4. Private Tutoring
While studying at college, you could make money sharing what you’re learning by tutoring someone else.
Some students may not understand a subject as easily as you, and you can help get them up to speed.
Advertise your tutoring services in places such as:
- Social media
- Facebook groups
- Online forums
- College notice boards
Tutor earning potential is $20 – $50 an hour, which is not bad while you’re still studying.
Take a look at our list of tutoring business name ideas to get inspired when naming your new venture.
5. Start a YouTube Channel
YouTube is more than just a place to watch funny cat videos. Many savvy video creators have started channels and become millionaires!
A few of the highest-earning YouTubers last year include:
- Jeffree Star: Estimated 2022 earnings $15 – $20 million
- Jimmy Donaldson: Estimated 2022 earnings $54 million
- Ryan Kaji: Estimated 2022 earnings $27 million
One thing to remember is that making money from YouTube does take time.
You need to hit 1,000 subscribers and 4,000 hours of video watch time, to apply for the YouTube partner program, and monetize your videos with ads.
Start by identifying a niche, create your channel, and upload videos frequently.
If you’re consistent, you’ll hit the 1,000 subscriber target in no time.
Oh, and check out this guide on how to make money on YouTube without creating videos.
6. Sell Your Class Notes
Finished with your class notes? Don’t throw them away, as you can sell them online for side cash.
This is one of the best ways to make money in college, as it requires zero extra work and you even help someone else in the process.
Check out these sites to sell college notes online:
All you need to do is upload your notes to these sites and set a price. When they sell, you’ll get paid through the website.
If you have clear, detailed notes, it’s possible to make a few hundred dollars a month with this side hustle.
7. Be a Virtual Assistant
Are you organized and adept at booking tickets, finding deals, replying to emails, and completing other admin tasks?
If yes, working as a virtual assistant could be the ideal way for you to earn extra cash in college.
Virtual assistants work on either a full or part-time basis, and you can agree on the hours you want to work beforehand.
This means you can fit this work around your college lectures and assignments.
8. Take Surveys for Quick Cash
There are many surveys that’ll pay you cash instantly, which is why this is one of the best ways to make money in college.
Most surveys take from 5 – 60 minutes to complete and will pay you in points, which can be redeemed for PayPal money or gift cards.
To get started, sign up for multiple survey sites, fill out your demographic information and you’ll be alerted when suitable surveys are available.
This is a simple way to earn extra cash in your lecture breaks or while lounging in the evening after classes.
Try signing up to Survey Junkie, Swagbucks, and Inbox Dollars, which are top reputable survey sites worth checking out.
9. Flip Items on Facebook Marketplace
Over time, it’s likely you’ve collected many items you don’t even use anymore.
Why not make some space and extra income by selling these items on the Facebook Marketplace?
You could even ask your friends and college lecturers if they have any items they want to get rid of. If they do, you can collect these items, refurbish them slightly and sell them on for profit.
Local flea markets and second-hand stores are other great places to find products to flip.
For a little inspiration, check out how this Florida couple ‘’flipped’’ their way to a six-figure income.
10. Get a Campus Job
If you live on a college campus, there are a variety of different jobs you could take on to make extra cash.
A few of the best on-campus jobs include:
- Library assistant
- IT Assistant
- Dining hall worker
- Mailroom Assistant
- Resident advisor (RA) looking after new students
- Campus tour guide
11. Charge Scooters with Lime
Lime is a company that offers scooters for rent in many major cities across the US.
They have an app that people can use to find a scooter and pay to rent it for a period of time.
These scooters need someone to keep them charged and available at all major rental hubs.
You could make money with Lime by becoming a Lime Juicer. And the good news is that you can set your own schedule and get paid for every task you complete.
To get started, sign up on the Lime Juicer page by giving details such as your name, email, phone number, and zip code.
12. Rent Gadgets on Fat Llama
Renting your unused gadgets on Fat Llama is one of the simplest ways to make money in college.
Do you have any cool gadgets such as a camera, drone, DJ equipment, sewing machine, electric scooter or anything else?
These can be lent out to someone else, to bring in easy passive income, even when you’re studying or working.
To get started, take some clear photos of your gadget and list it with a price on Fat Llama.
Respond to enquiries promptly and agree on a place to hand over your item. Every gadget is safe and covered by the Fat Llama item guarantee.
13. Become a Pet Sitter
If you enjoy spending time with animals, pet sitting and dog walking are great ways to earn extra cash.
Ask around your neighborhood to find local people who might need pet-sitting services.
You could also try searching pet-sitting apps and websites such as:
Here are some great pet-sitting business names to help you get started.
14. Sell Print on Demand Apparel
It’s possible to start a print-on-demand (POD) business from home with minimal investment.
You just have to take care of creating designs, and a POD company will take care of the printing and delivery.
This means you don’t even have to hold inventory that may never sell. If one of your designs doesn’t turn a profit, just delete it and create another one.
Popular POD apparel includes hoodies, t-shirts, mugs, bags, caps, phone cases, and masks.
Take a look at designs that are selling on Etsy and Redbubble for inspiration.
To start making money, use Printify or Printful to sell your products.
15. Be a Social Media Manager
Have you built a large following on one or more social media platforms?
This is the proof you need to start working as a social media manager and help someone else do the same.
One of the best ways to make money in college, this type of work can be done on a freelance basis, so you can work the hours that suit you.
Get experience by asking around campus to see if you can help any fellow students or teachers build their social media accounts.
And start prospecting for clients by setting up profiles on Fiverr and Upwork, detailing what services you have to offer.
Learn more in this guide detailing how to make money on Instagram.
Conclusion on the Best Ways to Make Money in College
Now you know the best ways to make money in college, you can enjoy not having to live on such a strict budget.
Many of these money-making ideas can be worked around college lectures, study sessions, and friend meetups, so you don’t have to miss out.
And building income streams in college will help reduce your debt when you leave college.
Not all these money-making ventures will be right for everyone. But choose one or two, and you’ll take charge of your financials in no time at all!