The Ultimate Guide to Online Jobs for Students and Side Hustles

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online jobs for students

A common stereotype incorporated into our culture is “the broke college student” stereotype. Even some students see it as a badge of honor – boasting about how they survived on instant noodles. However, that shouldn’t be the case. Just because you are a college student does not mean that you should be broke. There are many side hustles and online jobs for students to earn money. They go beyond the stereotypical college students’ jobs, such as working at fast-food restaurants and pizza delivery.

Here is an article that covers more than forty ways you can earn in college. They will be broken down into several different sections. Feel free to utilize some of these ideas.

Online Jobs For Students

Become a Virtual Assistant

Here is one of the best approaches to making money online. Several individuals and businesses want to outsource their assistant-related jobs, such as managing primary organizations, research, etc. If you are interested in undertaking those kinds of tasks while earning, opt for becoming a virtual assistant.

Sell Gigs on Fiverr

Fiverr is an online marketplace for freelance services. Freelancers can list their services on the site. People looking for different services reach out to freelancers and pay for a gig if they want to work with them. 

Sign up for Fiverr today!

Book Covers

Creating book covers can be a great business if you are good at graphic design. Create a hundred or so and then upload them to a website like The Book Cover Designer. When a book cover sales, you get 70% of the money. That’s not a bad deal because they are doing all the work. 

You can also sell them on your own website. You can sell them as exclusive book covers and replace them with a new design when someone buys them, or you can sell them non-exclusively for cheap. There are multiple options for you.

Start a YouTube Channel

Starting a YouTube channel is a good way to earn extra bucks if you know how to make videos. The more viewers you get, the more you attract people for ads; the more the ads, the more your cash. This can take time. You should study successful YouTube channels and see what’s working for them. From there, create a plan for content and get to work.

Design T-shirts for Sale

Next on the list of how to make money as a college student is to design T-shirts for online sale. T-shirts are more than just images – get creative by using funny sayings and catchy phrases. You can set up many platforms, including Redbubble, Merch by Amazon, and Teespring.

Transcription Services

Transcription is the ideal option if you type fast and want to earn while typing and listening. Several businesses and industries are seeking people to convert their audio to text. If you don’t have the skills, you can always learn online.

Install Apps

Believe it or not, you could get paid for installing apps. Apps like SavvyConnect pay you up to $180 per year to keep them installed, while Nielsen Mobile Panel (the TV rating measurement) will pay you up to $50 per year to install their app and browse the web as you usually would. 

Sign up for Nielsen here

Another app that you can sign up for is Robinhood. Robinhood is an app that allows you to invest from your phone. New users get a free share of stock when they create their account. You also get more shares whenever you refer a new person to the app. If you start investing, make sure that you do your research. Also, only invest what you can afford to lose.

Sign up for Robinhood today

Start a Blog

If you enjoy writing, consider starting a blog. This isn’t the easiest idea on the list, but you can make some money off it with focus and dedication. Below is a post that I wrote that would help you get started.

How to Start a Blog

Launch an Online Course

If you are an expert on a particular topic, you can create an online course on sites like Udemy related to that topic and sell it. People are selling all kinds of online courses. Yours could be the next one.

Offer Translation Services

If you are fluent in other languages, you can offer translation services on multiple platforms – for people who want either spoken or written translation services and get paid.

Start a Virtual Call Center

Call centers are the core of several businesses. If you want to become an operator from home, several websites, such as LiveOps, let you join in and become a call center agent.

Offer Voice-over Services

Voice-over is becoming increasingly popular every day, especially with the prevalence of podcasts. With a great voice and setup, you could earn while offering voice-over services from home.

Become an SEO Expert

Search Engine Optimization is fast becoming a great freelance gig for analytical individuals. You can earn up to $70/hour with analytics skills and being a little savvy.

Need help figuring out what SEO is? Check out this post.

Freelance Writing

If you have a class schedule that gives you a lot of down time, consider becoming a freelance writer. Freelance writing jobs are easier to get than ever before because people are constantly building new websites and need content. The thing with that is that easy isn’t always good. You want to make sure that you get jobs where you have good clients. There is a huge difference when it comes to good and bad clients. Working with a client that communicates and lets you know exactly what you want can be a Godsend. 

You also want to ensure you find freelance opportunities that pay well. Some clients or sites will try to charge you $15 or $20 per article. Shoot for something higher. You’ll thank yourself for doing that. To get started with your freelance writing, you can check out Upwork and Fiverr. They are two places where you can find clients.

Buy Stuff Online

A few tools will give you cashback when you purchase items using their platforms. Paribus is a good example. It checks your email for receipts, and when you buy from one of the 16 retailers on their list (like Amazon and Target), you get your money back.

Another great cashback site is Rakuten. They have tons of stores that you can get cashback from. They also give new users a $10 bonus when they sign up.

Sign up for Rakuten

Participate in Online Surveys

Next up on the list of how to make money as a college student is to fill out surveys. You can get gift cards, cash, or prizes for participating in them. You will find tons of them online. Below are some survey companies to sign up for.

Opinion Outpost

Survey Junkie

Participate in Online User Testing

When companies develop a new site and initiative, they usually need people to test them before going live. So, you can get paid for every test you do.

Make Money By Renting

Rent Your Car

If you have a vehicle that you do not use because you are always on campus studying, then here is an excellent time to use it by renting it out. You can use a company like Turo to get started.

Learn more about Turo here.

Rent Your Stuff

Is there some stuff in your garage that you do not use? Maybe camping gear or something that is collecting dust. Consider renting them out on platforms such as Rentything.

Rent Your Driveway or Garage

Suppose you own an apartment with extra spaces you don’t use in your driveway or garage. You could rent it out to people who need to keep their RV or boats.

Rent Your Clothes

This one is a unique idea. If you have several clothes you don’t wear (like occasional dresses – bridesmaid attire, or some fancy Jeans), rent them out for people who might need them at reasonable prices.

Make Money With Tasks

Try out TaskRabbit

Here is a website where various people post jobs so that you can apply for several tasks. There are freelance gigs, as well as full-time employment. The little tasks on this platform can eventually add up to a decent side income.

Become a Note Taker

Various people, including senior citizens and disabled people, need notes taken for multiple things. If you are willing, you can earn a little cash by taking notes for those in need.

Medical Test Volunteering

Some medical studies need volunteers to try things out. Some may need to test drugs, while others might be to monitor reactions. It is an excellent way to earn extra cash, even as a college student.

Deliver for Postmates

Postmates is a delivery service whereby you earn while delivering items to various places in town. Sign up for Postmates below.

Apply for Scholarships

Scholarships are an excellent way to get extra bucks while in college. However, most people do not realize that some scholarships get low entries. Try to apply for as many as you can.

Recycle Bottles and Cans

Here is another simple way to get some extra cash. Get paid for turning in cans and bottles for recycling.

Recycle Scrap Metals

Apart from cans and bottles, you can also earn by recycling scrap metal. Although it is harder to find metals, you can make a considerable amount from them.

Answer Trivia Questions

Believe it or not, you can get paid while answering trivia questions. Swagbucks is another excellent platform that allows you to play trivia games and earn while doing so.

Officiate Wedding Ceremonies

If you are an interesting person who can do a cool job, people are always searching for people like you to officiate their weddings, and you will get paid for that. Check online to see how to get started.

Get Rebates for In-Store Shopping

Ibotta is a great platform that offers you cash rebates for shopping. It is a very easy-to-use app. Sign up for Ibotta below.


Drive for Lyft or Uber

As a college student, you probably have a lot of down time. Instead of drinking and partying that whole time, use it to make some money with Uber or Lyft. If you have a car, you can make a killing if you live in a big college town. There’s money to be made. Students will be partying and going to games, so you can expect to be busy a lot of the year.



Answer Pressing Questions

If you are an expert on a particular subject matter, you can get paid by answering some questions. A website like JustAnswer lets you connect with experts that will spend some cash for you to answer their questions.

Sell Stuff

Sell Your Class Notes

The next way to earn in college is to sell notes you take in class. There are two ways to do that – you can sell to your colleagues or sell online. Some people make thousands of dollars only by selling notes.

Sell Old College Papers

Apart from selling notes, some college students write papers. Don’t let them go to waste. Check out some services that will buy your old college papers.

Sell on Craigslist

If you have items you don’t use or that are too large for selling online, Craigslist is an option for you. You can sell things like furniture and earn a few dollars with Craigslist.

Sell on eBay

Buying items that people are selling at yard sales or Craigslist (check the “free” section) and then listing them on eBay will allow you to earn while in class. I’ve been selling on eBay for years. I wish I had started when I was in college. I would have used that money instead of student loans.

You should remember that you will have to spend some time buying items and shipping them when they are sold, but for the most part, it’s not too much hard work. Once the semester ends, you can also sell your old books on eBay. You can also check outside the dorms when it’s time for students to move out. You may be surprised, but people leave a lot of things. You never know what kind of treasures you can find. 

Check out the webinar eBay for Starters

Sell on Etsy

If you are into crafts, consider selling your items on Etsy. Designed for handmade items like greeting cards and stationery, Etsy is a proven way to make money by selling various crafts.

Sell Roadside Gifts for Holidays

Do you usually see roadside stands around Mother’s Day and Valentine’s? They are the ones selling treats and flowers. Well, that could be you. Find out the rules, and you can start selling items today. You can make things or buy low and sell high.

Sell Your Blood Plasma

Here is a unique idea on the list-making money by selling your plasma. Various treatments require plasma. Therefore, do that to save a life and earn.

Sell Your Eggs or Sperm

Like donating plasma, as a healthy adult, you can donate your sperm or egg to earn extra cash.

Sell Your Hair

Still, on the trend of selling things from your body, consider selling your hair. Some people are ready to pay some cash for your hair. is the highest online hair sale platform. Check it out!

Sell Feet Pictures

An increasing number of individuals are selling photos of their feet to get quick money. Establish a profile and upload photos of your feet to start earning money. Since the majority of the photographs on the selling platforms are plain images of feet without explicit content, it’s not inherently adult content. FeetFinder, one of the largest foot picture selling platforms, allows merchants to sign up in only a few minutes.



If you are a responsible individual, consider babysitting as an option to earn some extra money. A typical babysitter makes approximately $20 hourly.


If you know someone traveling for vacation, offer to provide housesitting services for them. Nobody wants something terrible to happen to their houses, so help them avoid that by assisting them in housesitting while earning.

Clean Houses

Here is another decent gig to earn as a college student. Although it might take several hours, house cleaning is an effortless task requiring no exceptional experience. You can even team up with house cleaning agencies.

Do Weekend Catering Services

Catering agencies usually seek help during different times of the week due to various schedules. This could be a good opportunity for students looking to earn a few bucks.

Repair Computers

If you are handy with computers, then repairing computers for people is an excellent way to make extra cash. The job description typically involves checking for viruses, fixing hardware, setting up operating systems, and more.

Handyman Work

Suppose you are proficient with tools and can fix things. Make some extra cash by offering some handyman services for others. Connect with neighbors or friends or your landlord in college that might require your services.

Paint Houses

We’ve made it to the last item on the how to make money as a college student list. One of the most common college gigs is becoming a painter. Platforms such as College Pro House Painters have been linking college students to several house painting gigs while exposing them to entrepreneurial experiences.

Congrats, you have made it to the end of this list. You now have no excuses for being broke. We hope this article propels you to go out there and start earning big!

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Jason Butler is the owner of My Money Chronicles, a website where he discusses personal finance, side hustles, travel, and more. Jason is from Atlanta, Georgia. He graduated from Savannah State University with his BA in Marketing. Jason has been featured in Forbes, Discover, and Investopedia.