15 Side Hustles for College Students

side hustles for college students
The best side hustles for college students. Some side hustles can be completed right from your dorm room!
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Let's face it, college is expensive. Between tuition, books, room and board, going to college can easily run you into the tens of thousands, even hundreds of thousands dollars. For this reason many students find that getting a job is one of the best ways to manage expenses.

However what happens when your job just isn't cutting it? Well enter a side hustle. A side hustle is great stress free way to make extra bucks to cover your day to day expenses in college. Not only do you get to choose your own schedule, but you also gain relevant experience that may help you in your future career. Also some side hustles have main hustle potential, and may replace your current job. Here are the best side hustles for college students.

The Best Side Hustles for College Students


Merchandising jobs are a great way option for those interested in eventually working in operations, retail, and/or customer service. As a Merchandiser you'll be responsible for auditing stores which includes counting inventory, organizing products on shelf, creating displays, restocking, gaining feedback from management, and communicating with stores about promotions, and how to order new stock. Jobs typically pays up to $20 an hour, sometimes more, and you have complete control over your schedule which makes it a perfect side hustle for college students. 

Merchandiser jobs can be found right on your smartphone. Companies such as Survey.com are always looking for Merchandisers. Signing up is quick and easy, and jobs can be started almost immediately (depending on availability in your area of course). You can sign up as a Merchandiser with Survey.com by clicking here

 Field Agent

Field Agents, as the name suggests, are responsible for performing tasks on behalf of brands which can range from confirming the presence of a display in a grocery store, to giving your feedback on a newly launched product. Jobs are super simple to complete, and pay can go as high as $30 an hour.

Becoming a Field Agent is crazy easy since all it takes is to download the app and sign up. You can start working immediately. Jobs are approved quickly, and payments are deposited directly to your checking account. What's not to like? You can sign up as a field agent by downloading the app here.

Complete Audits

Many companies are now choosing to hire gig workers for store audits. As an auditor you'll be expected to go to a specific location, and take pictures of displays and products, make note of expired products, and update companies on inventory, prices, and promotions. Some jobs may require that you speak to management to fix issues you may find while working.

Audit jobs are super easy to find and can be done right from your smartphone. Observa is currently hiring for auditors to complete tasks at national chains such as Wal-Mart and Target, and pay can go as high as $40 an hour. The great thing about doing audits is you probably already shop at these major retailers, and can therefore complete jobs while on a grocery run. You choose what jobs you're comfortable with, your hours, and you can get started immediately after you download the app. To download the Observa app simply click here.

Food Delivery

Food delivery used to be the domain of pizza shops, and Chinese restaurants. Well, not anymore. You can have food delivered from practically anywhere to practically anywhere, and you can make as much as $25 an hour doing it too. Apps like Door Dash make it easy to get in on the action, all it takes is signing up, completing a background check, then you're good to go.

You'll need a car or bike of course, as well as a smartphone since information for all your orders are processed through the app. Drivers are rated on customer service, and the number of on-time drop offs. The great thing about working for Door Dash is that schedules are pretty much available all day. Prefer to work in the mornings? There's a schedule for that. More of a late night owl? There's a schedule available for that too.

You can sign up for Door Dash here.


What can be more natural than tutoring while in college? Getting paid to pretty much regurgitate everything you just learned sounds almost too good to be true. Thankfully it isn't. There's a huge demand for tutors, with STEM fields having some of the biggest demand. Are you good at Statistics? Can recite codes in your sleep? You can make crazy crash helping your peers get exam ready.

As a tutor you can set your own hours and your rates. You can earn as much s $100 an hour tutoring courses many students struggle with (think Math, Science etc). University Tutor hires tutors from across the country, for topics ranging from literature to computer science. For a more set it and leave approach, Udemy is great a option to consider, and many tutors report making thousands of dollars a month.

Related Posts: 50 Companies That Offer Tuition Reimbursement

Campus Brand Ambassador

As far as college side hustles go, it really doesn't get easier than this. As a College Brand Ambassador you'll work on campus to drive awareness of brands who want to reach college students. It can be a really fun job as you'll be hosting events, and giving out freebies (can you say networking!). Many businesses hire for Campus Brand Ambassadors and it's a great side hustle to consider especially if you're extroverted.

Campus Ambassador jobs pay between $10 to $15 an hour. Ambassador jobs are usually listed by college, and unfortunately may not be available at every campus. College Ambassador jobs can be found on Indeed.com.

Write Essays 

Ever had an 8 page essay due, and thought to yourself "Damn, I wish could pay someone to do this." Well, it turns out you can. Tons of students are looking for help with completing papers, help you can get paid to do. You'll need to have knowledge of the subject matter, great writings skills, and the ability to produce an excellent paper in a short period of time.

IWriteEssays is currently hiring essay writers for a wide range of subject matter, and it's super easy to get started. You can sign up for IWriteEssays here.

Drive for Uber

It's never been easier to make money off your car thanks to Uber. As a driver you'll get paid to take passengers to their desired destination through the company's app. According to Uber, drivers may make as much as $33 an hour depending on their market, and earn a few tips along the way. It's a side hustle that provides a lot of flexibility since you have complete control over your hours. To get started with Uber simply sign up here, submit your information for a background check, and once everything comes back good you can hit the streets.

Become a Proctor

As a college student chances are you're already familiar with the role of a proctor. As a proctor you're usually responsible for administering exams, providing assistance to students while they complete their test, and keep an eye out for those who may have the answers up their sleeve (cheaters). Your hours are determined by the exams scheduled, and you may be expected to work evenings and even weekends.

It's a stress free side hustle for those who probably already have enough on their plate thanks to school work. Proctor jobs can often be found at colleges (check your college job board!), and third party companies such as Sylvan Learning Center, and ProctorU.

Get Paid for Your Opinion

So you're probably rolling your eyes thinking this is yet another survey, where you'll answer questions for one year only to earn $5. No, these are opportunities to join focus groups that can have you earning as much as $140 an hour. Companies often need participants to give feedback on products and services before they hit the market, and will happily pay you for your honest opinions.

One of the most popular companies for focus groups is Respondent. The company consistently has focus groups available with many paying $200-$300 for a chunk of your time. Participating usually consists of applying for a group, then being interviewed for up to 2 hours, then getting paid. Yes, it's that simple. You can sign up for Respondent by clicking here.

Clean Homes/Businesses

There is a demand for cleaners right now, as many companies seek to outsource the responsibility, and many homeowners simply don't have the time, or ability (think seniors) to clean themselves. It's a super simple job to do, and the payout can be as high as $49 per job.

It's a side hustle with main hustle potential as students have even started their own companies doing cleaning. Kristen Hadeed now manages her company, the Student Maid, after she started cleaning homes in college to earn money to buy a pair of jeans. 

Hand out Product Samples

Chances are you've seen demonstrators handing out samples during a trip to the grocery store. These demonstrators are responsible for not only setting up product displays, but also educating customers and driving product sales. It's a great job for those with sales skills, pays reasonably well, and hours are flexible.

Product Demonstrator jobs can be found on Merchandiser, and Front Row Events.

Mystery Shopping

You probably never thought that in your wildest dreams you could be paid to shop. Well Mystery Shopping is just that. As a Mystery Shopper you'll be paid to collect information on things like quality of service, physical condition of store, employee knowledge while pretending to be a regular shopper. 

It's a great option for those who are able to pay attention to details, and write reports in a narrative form. Jobs can pay up to $500 depending on demand, and industry, and some include perks such as free food, hotel stays, and events. One of the best companies to get your feet wet is Best Mark. It's one of the leaders in the market research industry, and one of the most recommended by mystery shoppers. You can sign up for Best Mark here.

Become a Rater/Web Assessor

This is a great college side hustle that allows you to work from your dorm. That's right you won't even have to leave campus for this one. As a rater you'll help companies like Google perfect there search engine by providing them with information on the relevancy of search results. Companies such as Lionbridge pays as much as $15 an hour and you can expect to work up to 20 sometimes 30 hours a week, all from your dorm. It's a job that can get a little repetitive so if you're not one for routine work then one of our other suggestions may be better for you.

Complete Micro Tasks

Micro tasks are tasks that take minutes to complete, and can include simple data entry to online research. Tasks can pay anywhere from as little as a penny to as much as $20 each depending on the task. While pay can start at the lower end of the scale, many who work doing micro tasks report making as much as $1200 a month by stacking up on tasks that are quick and easy to complete.

It's a great side hustle for students because tasks can usually be completed from just about anywhere. It's also great for introverts since you'll never have to interact with anyone else. Great options for completing micro-tasks include Amazon Mechanical Turk, which features everything from surveys to testing a company's chatbot. Another great option to consider is Clickworker which tends to have a wider variety of tasks such as taking pictures or products in a store, or recording video. You can sign up for Clickworker here.

side hustles for college students

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