Tuesday, June 12, 2018

Summer Side Gigs Can Lead to Added Income All Year

(Here is a Guest Post from Joyce Wilson. She is a retired teacher and enjoys sharing lesson plans, resources, and teaching tips on TeacherSpark. She is passionate about teaching and loves using her writing to help teachers, parents, and students.)

Are you looking for ways to supplement your teaching salary?  Or maybe you want turn a hobby into a money maker?  Summertime side gigs can not only fit those bills, they can also be worked into your school year schedule for year-round added income. 

Selecting a good fit.  Some studies show the number of Americans working multiple jobs is reaching a 20 year peak.  While wages remain relatively stagnant, thanks to the gig economy you can add a side gig to your lifestyle to help make ends meet without losing quality of life.  Match a gig with your talent, knowledge or personality type to keep things simple and capitalize on what you have to offer.  For instance introverts can do computer repair, house sitting or e-commerce, while extroverts can become personal trainers, life skills coaches or drivers.  Think of what your special knack is and put it to work!  Summer is a window of opportunity for getting set up, and then you can ease your new gig into your school year routine.   Here are some ideas:

Dog sitter or walker.  If you love interacting with man’s best friend, becoming a dog sitter or dog walker are great ways to combine your interest with making money.  It’s a flexible opportunity, allowing you to set your own schedule, pricing, and even the size and age of dogs you tend. 

Photography.  A good digital camera and an eye for composition can lead to great opportunities.  For shutterbugs with a gift for capturing moments, The Penny Hoarder notes there are many ways to put those skills to work.  Make memories during the wedding season, take family photos or graduation portraits, or sell your work to websites to be used as stock photos. 

Calligraphy.  Does your handwriting draw compliments?  If penmanship is one of your gifts, you can put it to work for you.  Beautifully handwritten envelopes, signs and place cards are sought after during the wedding season, and you can keep that gig up by providing services for holidays and other special events.  Or some experts suggest setting up an online store or engaging a craft-oriented platform website.  You can offer custom options or framable pieces. 

Tutor.  You can provide tutoring services to youth or adults in subjects you especially enjoy, offering your services freelance or via a tutoring agency.  Some of the more lucrative choices are subjects such as languages and advanced sciences and mathematics, or consider career-oriented options such as interview coaching.  If you prefer not to work one-on-one or are limited regionally, you can establish an online tutoring business.  Connect with students via the web using video conferencing. 

Dropshipper.  If marketing and customer service are your bag, dropshipping could be a terrific choice for you.  Your job would be to take orders and convey them to a manufacturer, who then ships directly to customers.  According to Oberlo, dropshippers tend to be most prosperous with items they are both knowledgeable and passionate about.  There are many options such as beauty products, specialized cookware, technological goods, or athletic gear. 

Airport shuttle driver.  Most people are familiar with delivery and carpool-style driving options these days, but a less familiar niche is airport shuttle driving.  As Lifehack explains, some airports just require you to register your car, and then you transport travelers to and from their vehicles.  It’s a bit like being a taxi driver in your own vehicle. 

Mystery shopper.  Would you love to get paid for doing your own retail therapy?  Being a mystery shopper is a lucrative side gig.  Many companies hire mystery shoppers to visit stores and report about their shopping experiences.  You can either search out existing opportunities or connect directly with companies that interest you. 

Interests, skills and income.  Side gigs offer opportunities to capitalize on your interests and skills in your off-time.  Look for ways to put your talents and interests to work.  By getting started this summer, you can transition your side gig comfortably into the school year.

Image courtesy of Pixabay

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