Everyone’s going to tell you that your teenage years are some of the best years of your life. You should start believing them! But that doesn’t mean the bulk of your glory days should be wasted away in the false premise that you’re only going to get your sh*t together once you’re older.
No, no. In fact, teenage-hood is the best time to get ahead of the game.
We’re talking about earning cash to keep away for your education, stacking up on valuable industry insights and having a fully loaded, impressive resume that would be irresistible on any employer’s table.
Or better yet; you could get the experience you need to start your own business! The point remains – it’s never too early to start, and it’s never a bad idea to get some sort of financial independence at the same time.
There are tons of cool ideas you can get on with if you’re looking to side hustle as a teenager. And yes, we’re narrowing the ones that don’t involve things like working retail part-time (because who doesn’t already know that’s an option?).
Here’s a list that’s updated and 2019-relevant; with a little something for all crowds of teens. Whether you prefer to get hands-on, have a great knack for teaching others or are just overall super tech-savvy –dive straight into HUSTLR’s list of 53 easiest ways to start making money fast and get your best foot forward at this very moment.
1. Start online tutor classes with TakeLessons
You don’t need to show off some fancy-schmancy cert to start becoming an online tutor! Actually, you don’t even need to be good at traditional subjects. If you’re good at film acting, singing, or even the drums – TakeLessons is the place you need to sign up on.
TakeLessons is a platform that has been connecting teachers of all walks of life to interested students since 2006. If you’re interested in signing up as a teacher, TakeLessons allows you to choose your desired time slot according to availability – which is super if you can only commit to a certain number of hours per day.
After passing a background check, you should be ready to start earning via TakeLessons.
Note that they pay you 60% of the price of each lesson, but with a little treat the longer you go on. For every 5 lessons completed, TakeLessons would give you the opportunity to earn an extra 10% more. This additional increase stretches to up to 90% total fee once you surpass 16 lessons!
2. Rent out your car when it’s not in use
This works best if you’re at least 16 with a valid driver’s license (duh). Basically, you could make some good money fast by doing nothing at all if you have a car sitting at home.
Of course, there would be different rates you get paid for according to the model you own. By Turo’s estimate, renting your 2018 Ford Fiesta would get you up to $303 bucks a month; whilst a Lexus RX 350L could get you anywhere upwards $600 bucks every single month!
You can gauge how much you’d earn through Turo on their site’s calculator right here.
3. Scanning your groceries for cash
This can be done via the National Consumer Panel or NCP. How? By simply scanning your groceries with your handy, smartphone best friend. You can profit from your parents’ groceries if they’re not too tech savvy. *wink wink*
It’s essentially a way for manufacturers and retailers to gain feedback through consumer data and improve their products at the same time. Once you sign up here, go right ahead and download their app as well.
They would then prompt you to scan the barcodes of all the items you’ve bought, and other added information like if there were any discount codes used, the quantity of products purchased, etc.
If you’re moderately tech-savvy about this, it would take less than 30 minutes for you to get all of this done. Your rewards (that come in the form of points) would then be converted to cash! Pretty downright simple, considering you’d be earning easy cash for something you’re already doing.
4. Selling your old books
Nothing more that we love than cuddling up with a good book. If you’re a bit of a hoarder yourself in this department, consider putting your already finished books up for sale to earn some side income quick!
We recommend the BookScouter app if this hustle interests you.
You can easily list your book on the app by scanning the barcode with your smartphone’s camera. Once that’s recorded; you’ll be able to access all the sites that are willing to take that book from your hands for a price.
Of course, you’re rarely going to find sites that would pay the exact amount you bought it for. But this beats having your paperback sit atop your shelf collecting dust –when you can be making a good side income from the lot.
5. Listing out your wardrobe
There’s no shame in admitting – you probably have a bunch of old, or even totally unused clothes in your wardrobe as you’re reading this right?
Ever heard of ThredUp? It’s a fashion haven for those who want to buy cheap, or sell pre-loved from a variety of different brands to fellow enthusiasts! They’re renowned for being the world’s largest online consignment and thrift store –so you’ll know you’d be selling to a huge audience + increasing your chances of a purchase!
Here’s how you get started selling on ThredUp. They currently accept clothes from 35,000 different brands, which are <5 years old.
6. Selling stock photos
If you think that no one can make money off being a photographer anymore – think again.
Content marketers know this, which is why the demand for high-quality, relevant stock photos and visuals are always going to be in demand no matter the niche!
If you’re already taking photos in your past time, why not make some money while you’re at it? Here’s a list of platforms to check out if you’re keen on selling your pieces right away:
7. Taking surveys for money
Perhaps one of the simplest ways of making money on this list is by finishing off short surveys online!
You want to take extra care with this method, though. There are tons of scams that draw you in with these prospects, and then under deliver. You also want to opt for the ones that are high-paying and wouldn’t spam you with low-cost forms each minute.
We make your search a little easier by narrowing down the sites that are tried, tested, and can earn you anywhere from $0.50-$50/survey! Take a look.
8. User-testing websites
If surveys aren’t exactly your thing, you could even get paid from surfing websites.
This could range anywhere from testing usability, to giving your feedback about designs and visuals or noting down any glitches and bugs experienced.
We know what you’re thinking –and no, you don’t have to be an expert developer or web specialist to sign up. There are tons of big brands looking for the opinions of people just like you, so it would make sense that it’s your two cents they want!
9. Becoming a mystery shopper
Much like scanning your grocery receipts, mystery shopping is a way to earn a side income from just going about your daily life – and getting rewarded for it!
Essentially, mystery shopping is just you coming under the guise of a regular shopper, but monitoring your entire experience throughout to report back to the company you’re involved with.
This includes the customer service you’ve experienced, cleanliness of the branch and other elements you’re asked to keep a watchful eye out for.
10. Getting paid to shop with Ibotta
Ibotta is the app you’re going to wish you heard of a long, longggg time ago.
It’s a 100% free cashback app that pays you back money for every purchase made from thousands of retailers! We’re talking eBay, Pet Smart, Fossil, Krispy Kreme, Amazon and tons more.
When you’re shopping for something, launch the Ibotta app to check if the retailer qualifies for cashback via Ibotta. Once the purchase is made, money is deposited into your account within 48 hours.
If you’re shopping in-store, you can also earn your cashback from just uploading your receipt and scanning the barcode items that you can redeem.
11. Teaching computer lingo to the older folks
How many times have you had to stop what you’re doing to help your mom out with accessing a file on her laptop? Or times out of your day you’ve had to ring your grandfather and help him out with shopping online?
Many people over the age of 60 are struggling to cope with how fast technology is developing – and that’s where you come in! You’re born in the generation that’s lightning-quick with all sorts of devices, tech, and websites; so why not use that upper hand?
Check with local senior citizen centers/retirement homes to see if they’re open to the idea of having weekly programs that teach tech to their elders.
These millennial entrepreneurs even started a whole business around this idea! No reason why you can’t too.
12. Online freelancing through Fiverr and Upwork
Maybe you’ve already got certain skills under your belt.
You’re a total graphic design ninja. A golden voice that everyone compliments you on. Maybe you even know some basic code!
If you know for a fact that your skills count for something –look into starting an online freelancing side hustle. Working this way allows you to work straight from home, out of your favourite café or literally anywhere else in the world with reliable Wi-Fi and a laptop.
13. Review songs to get paid
You already like listening to music on a daily basis – why not start making money fast this way too?
MusicXRay is a unique platform that lets you listen to songs and get paid to deliver your opinion this way too! The current going rate is $0.10 cents/song, and you’d be prompted to give your feedback on lyrics, genre compatibility and whether or not you like the artist in question.
Plus, the minimum listening time is only 30 seconds for you to get paid! It’s a side hustle that would pay you on the train ride to the mall, or the drive to the grocers.
14. Selling your designs on CafePress and Creative Market
We mentioned freelancing as a graphic designer, but you could also be a bit more adventurous if you have the experience.
CafePress is a way to do just that. Here, you can start dipping your toes into a more entrepreneurial way of earning a side income by selling your designs to the public!
How? On CafePress, you’re free to design t-shirts, totes, drink mugs, hoodies, and a whole bunch more for individuals/brands/companies to use after they pay you the royalty.
Creative Market also operates on somewhat the same logic. If you know how to design vector graphics, logos, fonts, and other cool templates – this is a good alternative to consider.
15. Creating YouTube videos
Everyone seems to be hopping on the YouTube bandwagon, and for good reason! If you go viral on YouTube, there’s a likely chance you could develop an insanely profitable career from that point onwards and start raking in the big bucks for your videos.
Views from your videos are turned to cash through something called Google AdSense. There are even options to earn cash through affiliate methods, which you can do once you reach a substantial following of subscribers.
Oberlo has a pretty good guide to get you started on gaining popularity from your YouTube videos.
16. Becoming an amateur referee
Recreational or not, every sports game needs an umpire or referee to oversee it all. We’re not suggesting you apply for the ones facilitating FIFA; even small-time referees get paid!
As a teenager, you could reach out to the sports communities within your neighborhood to see if they are in need of such services.
Of course, some of them might require you getting an official license and even being 16 years of age.
You can check out this guide to get you started as a teenage referee.
17. Offering pet sitting services
We don’t know about you, but this is a win-win if you ask us!
After all, the only thing that beats spending time with these adorable furballs is getting paid for it.
And boy, do people pay a lot on account of their pets. The average cost of owning a pet is actually $1,270 on average in the US!
So you can understand why getting into the pet-sitting business might prove really lucrative. Of course, you can start sourcing for clients the traditional way (by asking around, putting up flyers around your neighborhood, etc). Or you can start building your audience online.
If you’re at least 18 years of age, check out Rover to scout pet-sitting jobs in your community; and register right away to start getting matched to pet owners in need.
18. Starting a personal assistant business
Adults get busy all the time – and it sucks having to juggle everything at once.
So it’s understandable if they might need a little additional help with day-to-day tasks. This includes buying groceries, meeting reminders, helping out with errands and other small stuff that you could do in a jiffy!
Your client could be anyone from your neighbor to your friend’s parent, a pastor…or literally, someone else that you’re comfortable with and know well.
19. Creating Tumblr themes
No doubt about it, Tumblr has risen to become one of the most popular social media sites there are for millennials.
If you’re familiar with the site, you’ll know that Tumblr blogs operate on themes –and you can actually get earn from designing them!
You’ll, of course, need some basic coding/HTML experience. But here’s the gist of it!
20. Become a babysitter
Did you know babysitting one child would pay you anywhere upwards $16.75/hour in the US?
Of course, this depends on if you have certain licenses to justify the pay! But even if you don’t, amateur babysitting is still practiced widely – and it only takes looking in the right direction to find concerned parents that need your services.
Both of them require you to go through pretty extensive background checks, but once that’s done and dusted, you could be earning a pretty hefty side income from babysitting.
Sittercity even has a comprehensive list of fees/hour listed on their official website. Here, you can estimate how much you’d make on average according to your schedule!
21. Selling in-game items
We don’t even need to tell you how much of a phenomenon video games are in the modern world.
One way your little hobby can reward you is; through the selling of special digital items through games! A popular option is a virtual game SecondLife.
This includes anything from clothes, accessories, home items, buildings, and all else you can think of. Once a fellow gamer makes the purchase, you’ll be given a good chunk of the pie.
Here’s an in-depth guide that’ll teach you how to do it.
22. Selling old gadgets, DVDs and electronics
Sure, you might have the latest iPhone XR or swanky Android to boot. But that doesn’t mean the demand for older tech has gone totally out the window.
On the contrary, many old-time gadget enthusiasts would looooove to get their hands on your classic movie DVDs, console games or that little flip phone in your cupboard that you thought no one wants.
Just check out Decluttr! It’s one of the easiest ways and platforms to sell your old tech – to a crowd that’s waiting to take it off your hands for a reasonable price.
23. Investing in the stock market
Investing might seem scary when you’re young – but that shouldn’t be the case at all!
With more options out there being readily available to the younger crowd, investing as a teenager is entirely possible to start. Plus, it helps give you the experience needed when you start earning an actual paycheck and making much larger investments.
24. Teaching fellow gamers
Gamer Sensei is a peer-to-peer matching platform, probably one of the best of its kind that connects professionals to interested gamers who want to better their craft!
If you’re a total badass at online games, esports and other roleplaying games – consider signing up to be a Sensei right here.
Gamer Sensei lets you pick your hours, set a rate, and teach your budding students all they need to know to be on top of their game.
25. …or even just playing video games!
It’s cool if you’re not really that comfortable coaching other people yet. The gaming industry is a behemoth community; there are still gamers who are going to be interested in just watching you play as a reference.
Twitch is a platform that allows you to charge subscribers to watch you play. Subscribers pay to be granted access to your channel, and you can either live stream your experience or record it to be uploaded.
There are also tons of other ways to earn a side income by utilizing your gamer skills. MakeUseOf wrote a pretty extensive article about this – so check it out!
26. Working as a camp counselor
You’ve probably been to your fair share of summer camps in your lifetime. But did you know that this is a totally viable way of earning some income on the side for teenagers?
It’s also the perfect job position if you’re a natural-born leader and educator. It helps to be good with children too!
27. Becoming a freelance writer
If you’re a stickler for the finer details of grammar and a master of words; look no further. A freelance writing business is an excellent way to take advantage of those skills and build a good looking portfolio at the same time!
So how do you start?
Once that’s done, attach your portfolio throughout your social media business pages (we generally think that LinkedIn is an excellent way of networking and finding new clients too!) and get to work.
28. Start flipping sneakers
You’ve heard of people flipping houses – now get ready for a crowd of them doing the same for sneakers.
Yeap, you read us right. It’s one of the most unique ways to make money fast on this list, but it’s super well-paying if you know the tricks behind it. The sneakerhead community or “hypebeasts” are known for their willingness to pay loads of cash to add up to their collection – so why not explore this as a side hustle?
Here, you’d generally be buying and selling trending shoes that are doing well in the market. Take a look at how Six Figure Sneakerhead (this guy makes almost $10,000 month) started on this business model!
29. Completing tasks on Amazon MTurk
If you’re above the age of 14, Amazon Mechanical Turk (or MTurk) is a fantastic way to make some fast money online doing simple tasks.
You’d have to register and be confirmed through their site, first of all. One that’s done -you can start looking through a myriad of administrative tasks, survey participation, basic data entry, and other tiny micro-tasks that are outsourced to YOU by other companies.
In the end, companies get to reduce costs by not hiring big-name organizations or using expensive software, and you get to earn some side income on account of your own schedule. It’s a pretty sweet deal!
30. Selling makeup through Avon
It only costs $30 bucks to start selling with Avon – plus, you get to take home 40% from all your purchases.
Your first $30 invested would get you things like free online training and a personalized online store that would help significantly boost sales! This is a pretty good side hustle especially if you know any older makeup users; since they make up the bulk of Avon customers.
31. Earn money from opinions and reviews
This is a little something like MusicXRay (in the way you get paid for providing your feedback after an experience) – but with a little something for everyone.
Slicethepie is yet another platform you can use to earn money from your opinions! Here, you’ll find everything from fashion reviews, to rating product experiences, and much more.
Best part? There’s no limit to the number of reviews you can give! They also generally pay $0.05-0.06/review and gives you the ability to cash out once you reach the $10 threshold.
32. Gig work with Instawork
If you honestly can’t find the time to slot in a part-time job at the moment, start considering gig work instead!
Gig work involves you making yourself available literally any time you can, and platforms like Instawork makes all of this possible with a click. Once you’ve signed up with Instawork, you’ll be considered an on-demand staff, and you’ll be able to set your schedules and get curated job openings whenever you’re available only.
Instawork makes it possible to book gigs at the last minute too! You’ll also have access information such as location, pay rate, hours, and everything else you need to know. Here’s where you can sign up.
33. Online customer services
There are tons of companies that would hire teenagers to work from home through customer service, but U-Haul is one of the most revered.
U-Haul hires a lot of staffers under the age of 18! Once you get started, your basic job requirements would be things like taking calls, answering questions, and monitoring your customers’ experience through the process of truck/storage/transport facilities.
You can check right here here for any open job listings.
On average, U-Haul pays its online customer service assistants anywhere from $7.00-8.50/hour. That’s not bad as a side income for a teenager!
Yep – exactly what it sounds like! If you know of any small, local businesses in your area (cafes, coworking spaces, pet shops could be your targets) or even a budding entrepreneur; reach out to them to see if they are in need for a social media account manager.
Chances are they’d be pretty stoked to get someone as tech-savvy as you onboard!
With teenagers being 100% natural at everything Instagram, Facebook, Pinterest, and YouTube – we’re loving the odds of this side hustle bringing you good money.
35. Organizing bake sales
Note how we mentioned bake sale(s), as in plural. So we’re not just on about you organizing one lone bake sale – but to become the ultimate guru of bakes in your community.
You can start off by organizing a few sales during high school game tournaments and carnivals with your friends. Sell anything from cupcakes to cookies, mini cake pops; you name it! Take this to another level by becoming an organizer and start selling booth spaces to other kids.
Then, stay tuned to anything similar happening around town – and offer your experience here. Your freshies and juniors might genuinely appreciate the help, and of course, it helps that you get to split the profit at the end of the day.
Here’s a modern checklist to planning your very own bake sale!
36. Selling your clothes on Poshmark
Poshmark operates on a very similar basis to selling your clothes on ThredUP, but with a twist. The stuff here generally ranges to upper-class brands such as Nike, Michael Kors, Coach, and a few others.
We understand that teenagers might not necessarily have access to big-name brands such as these –but you can ask around! You’d be surprised at how many women you know that are unaware of such a site, and still, have their pre-loved designer items collecting dust in the back of their wardrobe.
Your mom or aunt would be great people to ask! Poshmark only takes a very small (20%) cut off the items sold, so you can still take a piece of the sale before handing the rest off.
37. Watching movie previews
Besides online surveys, user-testing, and listening to music for money; did you know you can earn side income watching movie previews?
38. Monetizing your blog
If you’re not quite sure of the basics of starting a power-packed blog yet, here are some good (and free!) resources to get you started. We’ll even throw in an awesome eBook you can read to start building traffic to your blog.
The idea here is to start making money from your blog – instead of just running one for the sake of it.
You can do this one of two ways! By running the usual ads through Google Adsense, or by promoting affiliate links.
Here, we also show you 5 well-paying tactics that can allow you to drive up to $10,000 worth of traffic via Pinterest. Hooray for passive income!
39. Teaching a foreign language
You get maaaaajor plus points for speaking a different language in our book. And, the chance to make money fast through tutoring.
Verbalplanet allows you to earn some side income by teaching students across the world you preferred language. It also allows you to conduct lessons via Skype anytime, anywhere with a strong Internet connection!
If you have this skill to boast, Verbalplanet isn’t the only option. Check out these 6 more sites that rake in $30/hour for foreign language tutors.
40. Delivering groceries with Instacart
If you’re at least 18 years of age and with access to your own car, consider becoming a personal shopper for Instacart.
Becoming an Instacart shopper essentially means that you’d be handpicking items from the grocer’s and delivering it to the doorsteps of customers. Simple as that!
41. Transcribing audio files
If you’ve got a good ear and burning desire for perfect detail, you’d make the perfect fit as an online transcriptionist.
This position is of course, 100% remote and with totally flexible hours. All you need to do is listen to audio or video files and recordings, and transcribe that into a text form!
42. Downloading the Qriket app
Don’t say we didn’t give you anything easy.
Qriket is the hottest way out there to make money fast as a teenager – and it literally involves you spinning a wheel. Yeap, we’re pretty shocked too.
You earn a spin by watching short ads in-app. Each and every spin gives you the chance to cash out with $5 bucks in cold, hard cash! If Lady Luck happens to smile down upon you a particular month, you could walk away with anywhere from $20-30 bucks a week. Not bad at all, right?
43. Delivering food through DoorDash
DoorDash is another on-demand delivery service that pays anywhere upwards from $10/hour. Same logic as Instacart, same requirements! Very flexible hours if you’re a busy bee just looking to make money fast for a few months – but stable enough that you’ll never be out of customer orders to fulfill.
44. Installing Qmee on your browser
Qmee is an extension you can download on Chrome, Mozilla, and anywhere else; that lets you earn spare change every time you watch a pop-up ad.
After watching an ad through Qmee, you’d get a payout of a few cents at a time! Not much, we know, but these prompts come quite frequently – so you’ll always have the opportunity to click on them!
45. Starting a mini-landscaping business
Going into landscaping could involve anything from mowing lawns, pulling weeds, trimming flower bushes and the like. Plus, there’s almost always a demand for maintenance services such as these.
Pull a buddy into it if you know of anyone that’s interested. You could even start designing simple little posters and flyers to go up around your neighborhood to advertise yourselves!
46. Becoming a youth lifeguard
Scout around your local community pool, swimming recreation centers, or the like for lifeguard opportunities.
All this side hustle requires you to have is excellent swimming and resuscitation skills, basic lifeguard training, and a really cool whistle. The average lifeguard even makes $10/hour – pretty decent for a side income summer job!
47. Getting family and friends to use Boostapal
You can start using the Boostapal platform to earn a little cash on the side every time someone you refer makes a purchase.
This is done via an invitation; extended to friends, family, classmates, anyone at all that you can think of. When they have successfully made a purchase through stores like Kohl’s and Target – you get a small cut of the total sale price.
Quite literally zero effort involved in this one. Sign up right here!
48. Starting an ironing service from home
As adults generally get busier in their lives; there’s less time for them to worry about day-to-day tasks like laundry…and ironing.
Besides, the local laundromat can only do much! An ironing business on the side can stand to make money fast once you build up a steady stream of clients and word-of-mouth referrals.
Here’s a guide to get you started with the basics.
49. Teaching English with Samespeak
We mentioned teaching foreign languages previously, but if English is and always has been your native tongue – there’s money to be made this way too!
You can get started on the Samespeak platform to teach the English language by utilizing Skype’s video call feature! The going rate at the moment is $10 for every 30 minutes – and you’re given a rough outline and syllabus at the start of each lesson.
50. Renting out your video games
We understand the love for video games, but there’s no denying that it can be veeeerrry steeply-priced at times.
So it only makes sense that there’d be tons of gamers out there who would prefer to rent games instead of buying each new release right? Absolutely!
There’s a bit of a market gap in private peer-to-peer video game rentals, but you can always source fellow enthusiasts through Facebook or Meetup groups that are willing to pay a small fee for your rentals.
If you’ve always been keen to get your opinions out and share experiences with the rest of the world; the influencer life’s a-calling!
The absolute fastest way you can explore this side hustle is through Instagram, of course. All you need is a decent Instagram business page, strong social media management skills, and a fantastic niche to establish yourself in.
52. Monitoring customer service calls
Notice how at every start of a customer service call there’s going to be a voice telling you that it’s recorded for “quality assurance” purposes?
That’s where Humanatic comes in. With their platform, you can sign up to earn side income while reviewing each of these voice messages, looking through feedback, and eventually giving your own two cents about the experience.
All of this eventually goes back into improving customer service and sales! Once confirmed, you’d be able to earn anywhere from $0.06-0.10/mini task.
53. Providing services through TaskRabbit
Those at least 18 years of age can apply to become a “Tasker” with TaskRabbit – and start earning up to 85% of the total rate for each task.
Becoming a Tasker would revolve around you completing some pretty heavy-weight tasks though, so you want to make sure you’re an individual alright with a little bit of physical work. This includes assembling IKEA furniture, moving boxes around, mounting a TV stand and all sorts of other home maintenance services.
You can officially sign up to be a Tasker right here.
As you can probably tell – age should never be a limitation when it comes to earning your slice of the pie.
Starting your own side hustle to earn additional income (or even for just super valuable experience!) is always going to prove lucrative in the long game; even though it might move a little slow at first.
As you can see from this guide, there’s no shortage of side hustles you can explore to make money. If you need even more side hustle ideas on top of what we’ve gone through, do check out HUSTLR’s Side Hustle Checklist here.
Jesslyn has been a senior content strategist and writer for personal finance and side hustles for the past 4 years. She believes in the power of an idea and breaking the rules whenever necessary. Above all, balance is everything. When she’s not writing up a mad scramble, she leans towards wine bars and yoga studios on the weekends.