15 Most Lucrative Side Hustles For College Students That Makes Money (Real Life Examples Included)

By Bill Acholla June 5, 2021
High Paying Side Hustles for Collège Students

Are you a college student looking for some profitable side hustles to help you make money?

Starting a side hustle is increasingly a reality for millions of Americans.

According to a Zapier report, 1 in 3 Americans has at least one side hustle. And 61 million Americans say they plan to start at least one side job in 2021.

Starting a side hustle from college comes with a lot of benefits like:

  • Tremendous earning potential.
  • Breaking the paycheck to paycheck cycle.
  • Growing your savings or paying down debt.

There are so many side hustles for college students, there’s really no reason not to consider it.

What Are Good Side Hustles for College Students?

The best side hustle for college students is the one that checks off all your list of your requirements.

In a nutshell, the best side hustle business to start is the one that checks off all the boxes on your list of requirements.

  • Least expensive
  • Pays well
  • Easy to start

When deciding what is the best side hustle to start from college, think about what you need to get out of it.

If you’re a full time college or university student, for example, then you might want to run a side hustle business that lets you set your own schedule.

So spend some great time thinking about what a successful side hustle business looks like to you

What Are The Most Successful Side Hustle Businesses?

Simple answer:

It depends on what you need and what your set goals are.

For example, I measure the success of my blog based on how much I earn vs. how much I have to work.

Please note that there are different ways to make money with side hustle businesses.

So think about whether you want to start:

  • Freelance writing gigs
  • Dropshipping
  • Teaching kids online
  • Blogging
  • Affiliate marketing

What Do You Need to Start a Good Side Hustle Business From College?

It depends on the kind of side hustle business you’re interested in.

For example, if you want tostart a blog, then you may only need a:

  • Laptop
  • Internet
  • Web hosting platform
  • Domain name

But if you want to become a professional home organizer, then you’ll likely need to invest in volunteering your time to get experience and build a portfolio .

I’ve rounded the best side hustles ideas you can start from college that can help you make money all year long without sacrificing your entire summer period.


Let’s dive right in.

1. Start a Blog

According to Growthbadger there are over 600 million blogs in the world and new blogs get started every day.

Starting a profitable blog can yield some amazing benefits.

As a college student you can make $1,000+ every month with your blog working on it less than 8 hours a week.

But there are plenty of bloggers who are making $5000, $10,000 or even $100,000+ every month from their blogs.

A good example is Michelle Schroeder-Gardner started her lifestyle website Making Sense of Cents in 2011 and currently she is earning over $1 Million per year.

And on a monthly basis she earns over $100,000 per month on her blog.

If you want to learn how to do that, See below:

Recommended resources:

How to Start a Lifestyle Blog That Makes Money In 2021

Learn How to Build a Six Figure Blog In Record Time (Updated)

2. Start a Freelancing Writing Business

One of the easiest side hustle you can start is Freelance writing business. It’s my most favorite side hustle because it can generate a lot of money.

If you’ve solid writing skills, you can launch your own freelance writing business at college between studying and enjoying your summer vacation.

Below are some of the most profitable freelance writing niches you can start with:

  • Food
  • Marketing
  • Health
  • Fashion
  • Internet
  • Real estate

Below is a great piece of advice from Sue Ellson who is an Independent LinkedIn Specialist, Career Development Practitioner, Gigster, Author, Speaker, Trainer.

As the author of ‘Gigsters – Any Age or Ability Employee, Expert of Entrepreneur’ (which you can check out at Researchgate – you do not need to join), I believe that any ‘work’ (Not JOB) needs to focus on your

  • Values – both what you believe and the value you offer.
  • Strengths – both natural and acquired (I enjoy some learned skills way more than natural skills).
  • Context – any factors affecting your ability to complete the work (time, caring responsibilities, financial commitments etc).

Next, if you are going down this path, you need to be a good money manager and allow for a fluctuating income and it is always best to start on a part time basis first to test your ideas and see what you can do for a small financial investment (use technology wherever you can).

Ironically, a lot of businesses get started by referral – up to 85% of business is by word of mouth, so building your network is vital (not just paying for ads on Facebook – a big con for the uninitiated!)

If you only need 100 customers to get going, think about how you will get those and then work out the rest as you go! Ask for help, do a competitor analysis and enjoy the process – even mistakes can be great learning experiences!

Recommended resources:

How to Earn $100,000 as a Freelance Copywriter (Updated)

How My Actionable Content Attracted High Paying Clients to My Freelance Business

3. Become a Home Organizer

Do you have a passion for organizing yourself?

Are you efficient and productive?

If so, then becoming a home organizer can be a profitable business.

So how can you build a business out of home organizing?


Use the below tips:

  • Find a focus and a specialty
  • Create a profile on Thumbtack.com platform and take on some organizing projects.
  • Set your rates and schedule.
  • Expand your client base by getting referrals.
  • Make sure your profile is as robust as possible and looks good.

A good example of a side hustler from college who was able to build a successful home organizing business is Leah Rowan owner of Backintheboxllc.com.

She was able to bring around $4000 per month.

4. Teach Graphic Design on Skillshare

Do you love teaching online?

If so, then Skillshare is the best platform for you to make money.

So what is Skillshare?

Skillshare is a subscription based learning platform where you can explore thousands of classes in various topics and more.

The online classes are mostly pre-recorded and you get paid per class minutes watched every month.

On average you can make 7 cents per minute and your monthly minutes watched can range from 90,000 to 170,000. That can add up to thousands of dollars per month in passive income.

Quick tips to succeed on Skillshare

  • Pay attention to what you did and break the process into simpler steps.
  • Pay close attention to people’s struggles and build a class around it.
  • Focus on quality and not quantity

Recommended resources:

19 Different Types of Graphic Design Skills (Updated)

99Designs Review: Is This Platform Worth It for Designers?

5. Teach People About Stock Market

Did you know that teaching people how to invest in the stock market can bring you six figure income?

It’s the perfect high paying side hustle business idea that can make you money on autopilot.

In a nutshell you teach people:

  • How it works.
  • Its history.
  • How people can start investing towards their financial freedom.

6. Start A Cooking Business

Cooking business is another way to make money for college students.

Families need people who can shop and cook for them.

You need to be creative and start taking on new clients and projects.

You can start cooking 5 to 6 meals per week for five families.

Each family would have a dedicated weekday in which you would plan out their:

  • Menu
  • Grocery shopping
  • Spend the day cooking in the ir kitchen.
  • On average this can bring you $700 per day.

You can also choose to cook at your own home and deliver the meals to the families.

To advance your business, you can  do virtual cooking classes and charge $1000 to $2000 for each.

This is one of the best and easiest side hustle ideas for college students to start.

7. Become A Social Media Consultant

There is a growing demand for social media services.

Most businesses are looking for social media consultants who can help them get noticed on social media platforms.

According to Natalie Zfat larger social media agencies and public relations firms typically charge $3,000/month.

That shows you how much you can make from being a social media consultant.

Below are quick tips from Laura Briggs The Freelance Coach founder of Betterbizacademy.com.

  • Make sure you have a solid example of your own profile or that of a client or school project to showcase your knowhow.
  • Invest time in free tools like podcasts and blogs so you can stay ahead of trends.
  • Make sure you’re comfortable in evaluating a company’s voice & tone so you can create appropriate material for their pages.
  • Look at all their competitors to get examples of how this company could successfully stand out.
  • Develop a sample strategy you could use for a small business and use this as your initial work example before you’ve been hired by your first client.

8. Lawn Care

I reached out to Phil La Duke who’s a speaker and writer and here is what he told me:

I would stick to the mantra: simple, practical, fast.

One that comes to mind immediately is lawn care. I have a very small lawn, and yet landscaping companies want an exorbitant amount to cut it.

Someone who wants a side hustle could pick up the lawns that  landscapers won’t take on. At an affordable rate.

Another one that comes to mind is house sitting. People are going out on vacations and need someone to look in on pets, make sure the mail gets collected, etc. can you make five grand a month doing that? You can if you do several at a time.

Most people think of house sitting as oh full-time, sleep at the house, gig where as a side hustle, you make sure the food doesn’t  go rotten.

Take out the trash. Set timers on lights. Make sure No water pipes have burst/no water heater is leaking etc. put in two hours a day for Six houses and you have a nice bit of income.

Returning bottles. In Michigan bottle returns are limited to grocery stores who further limit the returns to $25.

I have a garage full of returnables. I would be willing to pay five cents per bottle/can and they can be redeemed for $.10 you double your money for very little effort.

Manage garage sales. Organize, price and even work the garage sales for a portion of the profits.

Professionally editing doctoral thesis.  My daughter does this and it works out to about $100 a page.

Dog walking. A lot of people even when they’re working from home don’t have the time to walk the dogs. It doesn’t take long to keep you physically fit and you can do multiple dogs at the same time.

Become a professional assistant. Everyone needs someone or could use someone to go through their emails, sort them in files, make sure the bills get paid, answer voicemails and emails.

It’s also useful to manage someone’s scheduleI——especially when they have work, social, and kids schedules to worry about. This doesn’t look bad on a resume either.

9. Buy and Sell Maternity Wears

There is a clear gap in the market for high quality maternity wear and as a college student you should go for it.

In 2019, Emiliageorgeofficial.com started working on her brand when she got her first child. She launched her business and the business brought her nearly $500,000 in 20202.

As a college student, source for maternity wear and sell them through Etsy or Shopify.

If you want to find buyers, you can use Linkedin and instagram influencers.

Try it and let me know in the comment box below.

10. Teach Kids On Outschool Platform

If you have passion for teaching Kids, then Outschool platform can be a great source of making some good money.

Outschool is a platform where kids from K to 12 go to take live classes. The classes are taught via Zoom.

So how can you make mpy out of it?

Class prices depend on their length. A six week course can cost a kid $65 and on average you can make $45.

As a college student, you can teach as many as 30 classes per week and between 7 and 11 hour per day. On average you can pull $10,000 per month from the platform.


  • Come up with creative ideas
  • Pitch them
  • Teach the classes
  • See what works

11. Use Twitch.tv To Livestream Songwriting Process

Livestream songwriting process on twitch.tv is a simple way to make money without leaving your college room.

You’ll need a laptop and internet to get started but otherwise, it’s one of the lowest-cost side hustle ideas to start.

This is how you can stream your songwriting process?

  • Stream 4 to 8 hours per days with about 300-1000 people watching at a time
  • Expand your creative  output on the platform
  • Go to virtual tours
  • Dedicate a day to each city virtually
  • Spend 3 hours per night playing  for and talking with the 300-300,000 people who would tune to your channel.

12. Start Customizing Shoes With Paint and With Glitter

Customizing shoes with paint and with glitter is a lucrative business idea.

A good example is Riley’s Alison founder of Meggmade.com who over the years was able to bring in $18000 from hand-stitching her custom designs and she also made another $6500 from classes that she taught other people how to craft their own custom design shoes.

Hers is how to expand your business:

  • Create an online tutorial
  • Create a private Facebook group for participants
  • As more people sign up you can increase your class price
  • Post picture of your designs to instagram

13. Become A Career Coach

Becoming a career coach is a great business that can bring in six figure income.

You can build a business that is dedicated to helping people discover their ideal careers.

So if you want to transform your career business into meaningful lucrative work, here is what you should do to succeed.

  • Keep your goals top of mind
  • Keep a mentor
  • Seek for help
  • Collabora with your colleges

14. Start Selling Lego on eBay

Got selling skills on eBay?

I definitely don’t but if you do, you could easily make money selling lego on eBay.

For example, you could sell different Lego sets and minifigures online both on eBay and dedicated Lego marketplace.

Here is how you can get customers:

  • Let people on  Facebook know that you could sell lego on their behalf
  • Start a blog and cover topics of interest to the lego community

15. Start an RV Hustle

Do you have an RV just sitting in your driveway?

If so, you should put it to use by renting it out.

According to the Recreational Vehicle Industry Association, over 8.9 million households own an RV, and this number only continues to increase.

By renting your RV rental online with RVshare, you can earn between $6,000 and $40,000 a year in extra income.

A good example is Shi Del Grosso who earned an average of $750 per month from renting out Joey on peer-to-peer RV rental marketplace RVshare, and ended up making $13,000 in profit.

Right now she is growing a rental fleet, adding two to three more RVs.

Quick tips:

  • Keep the cost of remodelling RV down.
  • Think RV as a hotel
  • Us TIkTok to draw a bigger audience by answering RV questions
  • List your RV rental online with RVshare.com
  • Document your RV renovation process in your Instagram account
  • Upgrade the sleeping arrangements
  • Search for good deals on second hand materials

Now It’s Your Turn

Do you have any profitable side hustles for college students to start that I missed?

If so, share your thoughts in the comment box below.

And please don’t forget to share this post if you found it useful!

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