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15+ Best Side Hustles for Teens That Pay Well

15+ Best Side Hustles for Teens That Pay Well
Donata Tamulionyte

Donata Tamulionyte

Last updated - June 30, 2023

Financial independence and literacy are two vital aspects of life. Remember, it is never too early to start thinking about it. You are young and free, so why don’t you consider it a chance to boost your future growth? As a teenager, you get ample time and several scopes to achieve financial independence. You have the opportunity to try out different side hustles of your choice.

Side hustles are part-time jobs or projects that take you out of your regular school work or other obligations to help you earn some money to feel more empowered and save up for future use. Your young mind is flexible, and you have the zeal to work hard. So, why let that go to waste? 

Financial Independence for Teens: The Power of Side Hustles

You can try side hustles that might pique your interest, such as tutoring, pet-sitting, car washing, or even starting a small business. Leverage the power of side gigs that provide a source of income and teach valuable skills such as time management, communication, organizational management, leadership, and entrepreneurship. 

So, what happens when you start working from an early age? When you think of using some of your spare time to try different side hustles, you help yourself by building up your savings. You can let your money grow by investing in several financial instruments and watch the magic of compounding work, turning your $100 into $1,000. 

Moreover, you get a taste of hard-earned money, which is sweet. Hence, you will be more responsible about expense management. The joy of not idling away your time is satisfying. You can pay for your college and higher studies without having to ask for financial assistance from anybody; won’t that make you proud? Yes, such is the power of being an earning member of the family. 

You can showcase your talents, skills, and imagination and turn your hobby or passion into your full-time job. Suppose you enjoy designing graphics, creating digital art, or developing web apps. You can offer your services to people who need your expertise. The market for creative artists is surging more than ever. Trust us – the possibilities are endless! The more creative you are, the greater your earning potential is.

15+ Best Side Hustles for Teens That Pay Well

Remember, financial independence is a journey. It takes time, perseverance, and unwavering effort to achieve. It is time to take baby steps to reach the zenith later in life. A side hustle will help you take those first steps towards financial freedom. Here are 15+ best ways to make a few bucks for teenagers who are in search of creative, uncomplicated, and less strenuous side hustles that will help them earn good money.

#1) Sell Unused Bandwidth and Complete Online Surveys

This is perhaps the most convenient and easy option for a teen encompassed by preoccupations. Pawns.app has brought forth a unique way of earning money. Wondering how? Don’t let your unused internet data sit idly. Sell your leftover bandwidth on the platform in exchange for cash. You can also participate in online paid surveys to help brands create better products and earn handsomely.

Making pocket money and realizing your unfulfilled dreams are just a few steps away. Don’t let the cash crunch stop you from living life to the fullest. The best part is you don’t have to work hard or leave your comfort zone to earn. All you have to do is spare some of your leisure time. Download Pawns.app on your device, and you are good to go! 

#2) Be a Creative Writer

Several platforms, such as Youth Imaginations and CBAY Books, allow teenagers to express their thoughts on different topics. This is one of the most productive side hustles a teenager can consider. It’s a chance to hone writing skills and creativity. We believe there is no better way to gain knowledge than reading and writing extensively about different topics; this side gig allows just that.

Also, if you are a teen with a flair for writing but a limited amount of time to spare, this option could be a game-changer for you. It prepares you for your future careers while helping you earn money. Yes, you can work from your dorm and get paid!

#3) Monetize Fun: Video Games

Ask a teenager how much they love video games, and guess the answer. It is always a big fat “Yes!” Now, they can use this hobby in exchange for heavy monthly payments. 

You can try mobile gaming apps like Scrambly that allow players to earn cash rewards when they play games. Track and record your achievements, and complete in-game activities for more profit. Then there is App Cent, another unique platform that will pay you for playing various games. 

#4) Sell Old Items on an Online Marketplace

We all have a pile of unused items at home that we will never use again. These days, even teenagers have so many extra and outgrown clothes, shoes, accessories, gadgets, and more. Why not declutter the space a bit?

You can vacate your wardrobe and earn profit in exchange for old clothes, shoes you don’t wear, accessories and gadgets you don’t use, books you do not read, and more. In fact, your parents might have accumulated knick-knacks they are unwilling to use anymore, so sell those and earn a profit. Unsure about where to sell your items? Try out eBay, Craigslist, Facebook Marketplace, Poshmark, Mercari, etc.

#5) Use Your Creativity to Design Products and Sell Them on Etsy

Etsy is a popular marketplace that helps buyers purchase one-of-a-kind products. Suppose you have a knack for designing and creating items like crocheted tops, knitted sweaters, dolls, accessories, jewelry, etc. In that case, Etsy is the best place to showcase your creativity, sell your products, and get paid. 

You need not worry if you can’t do any of the stuff mentioned above or don’t have the money to buy the raw material required to make the products. If you know how to create printables, Etsy will help you sell those. For people unacquainted with the process of making printables, Etsy’s online course will help you develop marketable skills. 

#6) Make Videos About Your Life

People are turning to YouTube more than ever. If you can sing, dance, draw, cook, bake, or do anything interesting, share your talent with people through videos. YouTubers earn loads of cash using their unique skills to entertain their viewers. You have to gain the attention of the global audience by understanding what they want; that’s it. 

Many teenagers already have their makeup tutorial channels. Countless vloggers share historical facts and more to make their channels stand out. Consider someone like Tanner Braungardt, who shares prank videos. Today, he has more than 4 million subscribers!

Vloggers and influencers make money on YouTube by being a part of the YouTube Partner Program. You can do the same on Instagram. Once you have a steady followership, you can collaborate with sponsors or get a Patreon account to get money directly from subscribers. Document your exciting teenage years while also making money! 

#7) Walking the Neighbors’ Dogs

If you love animals, this could be appropriate for you. Life has become busy, and working professionals do not get enough time to spend with their lovely pets. Walking their dogs can benefit you immensely, both physically and emotionally. How is this mutually beneficial? You help the pups get some physical exercise for money while you get to complete your daily steps. Getting some fresh air outside is an ultimate mood booster. Also, the owner will worry less about their pet’s health. So, it is a win-win situation for all of you!

Start by creating flyers and social media posts to inform everyone in your locality about your service. If you are 18, you can sign up on the Wag app. This innovative application helps dog owners connect with individuals who offer dog walking services. It also ensures guaranteed payment. However, please note that you must be qualified to handle pets. Wag will conduct a background check and ask you to take a pet care quiz. 

#8) Online Tutoring

Do you want to be a teacher when you grow up? Do you love to teach kids? If so, online tutoring can fetch you money. Don’t limit your venture to kids. Your classmates or schoolmates might ask you to help them understand certain subjects you are strong in. Tutoring is a great way to share knowledge, learn more, and develop communication and tutoring skills. This job type is flexible, for you can do it from the comfort of your home and during your free time.

Of course, you have to let people know that you teach. So, talk to your schoolmates, neighbors, and more. Believe it or not, this side hustle can change your life and give you a 360-degree understanding of what teaching looks like. 

#9) Watch Ads and Get Paid

What? Really? Yes, are you surprised? Don’t be. Just relax and watch ads to receive payments. Have you heard of legit platforms like InboxDollars and MyPoints? You can sign up for free and earn bonus amounts between $5 to $10. You’ll also gain points for all the fun activities that you do, like shopping from Amazon, HelloFresh, and Target, watching videos (award shows like Golden Globes, Hollywood gossip, etc.), ads, and more. Earning couldn’t get any easier. You can redeem the points for cash via PayPal or gift cards. 

#10) Office Cleaning Jobs

Are you looking to earn some quick money? Office cleaning jobs pay well. They are a straightforward option where you can work peacefully, and nobody will disturb you. You can wear comfortable clothes, listen to music, and keep grooving while cleaning the office halls, desks, etc. 

#11) Wash Cars

Car washing has always been a high-demand job. People pay substantial amounts for car washing and cleaning services. Working as a self-employed car washer will require a little bit more effort and money as you must advertise your service and buy cleaning supplies (vacuum cleaner, hand-help hose, microfibre cloth, and more) to get started. However, it is worth it once you start receiving calls from clients. And if you are unsure about a solo venture, you can always work with a car wash company as a salaried employee. 

#12) Selling Photographs

Are you completely in love with photography? Is it your favorite pastime? Well, there is good news for you! Sites like Dreamstime, iStockPhoto, and Shutterstock want to buy your beautiful professional-grade photographs. Applications such as Foap allow you to upload your pictures right away from your cell phone’s photo gallery so that you can sell them. So don’t let those stellar photographs go to waste. Instead, sell them for cash!

#13) Work at Summer Camp

Who doesn’t like camping? If you ever get a chance to work as a camp counselor, we’re sure you’ll grab the opportunity at once. Summer camp is fun because it allows camp counselors to work with children and conduct their drawing, singing, dancing, craft sessions, and more. Working as a camp counselor propels you to work on your leadership, communication, and organizational skills from a very early age. Talk to your school authority and ask for a recommendation to start your journey. 

#14) Offer Babysitting Services

You know already that babysitting jobs are pretty much available all year long. There’s not much effort to put in; get in touch with neighbors or distribute flyers (specifying the service) to people in front of malls, shopping areas, nearby movie theatres, cafes, and more. 

Landing a job in this sector is easy because you’ll invariably find a family that will need your help. Babysitting is very rewarding and relaxing. If you love babies, get ready to have a great time. Are you 18 years old? Sign up on websites like Care.com, UrbanSitter, Sittercity, and more so that people in need of a babysitter in your locality can find you easily. 

#15) Deliver Food, Groceries, and More

You can help busy and older people get their groceries delivered on time with Instacart. You can also help people get food quickly by signing up on DoorDash. The process is easy: if you have enough spare time, sign up for free and choose whichever job suits you. No, you don’t have to spend any money. You’ll earn by running errands on behalf of others. For instance, you’ll visit the grocery store, shop, and deliver the items to the person who ordered. Or you’ll pick up a pizza or food from a nearby restaurant and hand it to its owner. It’s that easy! 

#16) Test Websites and Apps

Are you a tech nerd? We have just the kind of job you will love. If you don’t know about UserTesting, it is high time we tell you about it. Sign up and test websites to earn cash. Jobs lasting about five minutes will earn you $4. The platform offers $10 if you evaluate a site for 20 minutes and up to $120 for live conversation tests. Many websites and companies pay you when you use their site and offer them valuable insights on performance and user experience.

How Can Teens Balance School and a Side Hustle?

We agree that balancing school and a side hustle is not child’s play, but it is possible. As they say, “Where there is a will, there is a way.” To make your job easier, let us share a few tips to help you manage your time effectively.

Prioritize Schoolwork

Yes, earning money can be tempting, but you must never forget that you ought to complete your education. Make sure to define each segment of your schedule precisely. First, complete your schoolwork, and then if you have spare time, dedicate it to whichever side hustle you have chosen. Do not let analysis paralysis get the better of you because most people can’t decide what to do, only to suffer. Set aside specific times for your side hustle and stick to them. This move will help you avoid overworking yourself or neglecting your schoolwork.

Choose a Flexible Job

Search for opportunities that will let you work on your schedule, such as freelance writing, tutoring, and answering surveys. This way, you can balance your work and school commitments.

Understand the Importance of Taking Breaks

It is vital to take breaks throughout the day to avoid burnout. Make sure you’re taking time to relax and recharge. Do whatever you please when you are unwinding, whether reading a book or going for a walk.

You can choose side hustles that are also relaxing, like dog walking or delivering groceries. If you love gardening, start caring for lawns to spend time with nature. Some mattress companies will want you to walk straight into their office and sleep. You can work as a tester and test products such as mattresses, pillows, eye masks, sleeping aids, and more. These types of gigs will offer you some respite from your mundane routine. Also, they allow you to work on a part-time schedule.

Ask For Help

Don’t shy away from asking for help from your teachers, parents, or friends. They can offer support and guidance as far as sharing your workload is concerned. 

Balancing school and a side hustle is demanding and taxing at the same time. You must have discipline if you want to achieve success. Keep believing in hard work, but remember that managing time intelligently whenever possible is also critical. Do not forget to take care of your well-being. Getting a first-hand experience of earning will teach you weighty lessons in life. Keep an open mindset, but do not go beyond your call of duty. 

Learning Valuable Skills Through Side Hustles

Earning money and navigating the challenges in life are undoubtedly daunting. These trials help young teens become strong and teach them valuable skills and lessons for a smooth future. 

Time Management

Studying, preparing for exams, homework, and extra-curricular activities form vital parts of education. The zeal to make way for extra income and manage school help you learn the basics of time management. You’ll learn to juggle between work, society, and school responsibilities. The skill to prioritize tasks and be more responsible instead of feeling privileged are lessons that make you feel more empowered. 

Communication Skills

Whether it is a mainstream job, a freelancing opportunity, or an interactive task, impressive communication skills are a prerequisite to ensure transparency with customers or clients. Teenagers who opt for side hustles gain an opportunity to develop their communication, active listening, and speaking skills to express themselves clearly and persuasively and respond to feedback appropriately. 

Financial Literacy

Getting into a job and understanding the hard work associated with earning money teach teens about managing expenses, budgets, income, and taxes. How can one ignore these vital skills to flourish later in life? Understanding finances and focusing on savings can never go wrong when it comes to fortifying the future. 

Marketing Skills

Some jobs require promoting a platform, service, or product. A teenager working in that domain requires creativity and marketing skills to justify their job role. Hence, side hustles encourage teens to develop a brand, create marketing materials, and use social media to target and reach potential customers for maximum engagement. When they work on marketing skills early on in their careers, they open up creative opportunities for themselves. 

Problem-Solving Capabilities

While working in the professional domain, teenagers must be ready to handle adverse situations, such as dealing with conniving customers, managing inventory shortages, and balancing multiple tasks. The more they face challenges, the better. These hardships will help them develop their problem-solving skills by finding creative solutions. 

The Time Is Ripe to Build Self-Esteem!

It is never too early to start something new and constructive. Working in a work ecosystem boosts teens’ self-esteem just beginning their professional journey. Success at work is a stress buster and can open up an escape route from the difficulties faced at school. The sense of empowerment and independence matters the most as far as the career-building process is concerned.

A side hustle doesn’t just allow teens to earn. Soon, they learn the tricks to balance everything that matters to them. They become more organized and composed. 

So, if you are reading this blog, know that you can manage your studies alongside the side hustle well. Have faith in yourself. A side gig is rewarding, so much so that it can shape your future for the best. The most exciting years are yet to come. Hence, prepare yourself. Start today! 

FAQs

1. What side hustles can teens do?

When it comes to choosing a side hustle, teens must always stick to what they like or are comfortable with. Some of the choices they can explore are:  

  • Complete surveys and sell unused internet on Pawns.app 
  • Watch ads/videos for money
  • Sell creative arts and crafts
  • Design and sell graphics 
  • Make and sell clips, earrings, headbands, and other accessories
  • Make and sell digital art 
  • Create and sell printables
  • Be a digital creator
  • Design and sell t-shirts, mugs, and bags 
  • Walk dogs
  • Babysit
  • Wash cars
  • Review music for a college radio station 
  • Work as a delivery person
  • Clean homes and offices
  • Test websites and apps
  • Test products
  • Write as a freelancer
  • Narrate books
  • Help people with their errands
  • Start a blog and earn from ads and product endorsements
  • Be a personal shopper
  • Tutor other students
  • Teach a language
  • Wait tables at a neighborhood restaurant 

As you can see, you have a constellation of opportunities to choose from. Just find the one that suits you the best! 

2. How can a teen successfully manage a side hustle alongside school?

Yes, managing a side hustle alongside school is possible for teens. It is, after all, the mindset that matters. Teens get to learn a lot of vital lessons while they try to strike a balance between their personal, professional, and school life. If you are a teen who’s trying to balance it all, follow these tips: 

  • Be precise with your schedule. Start steadily with a predictable routine. If you feel you are able to handle the pressure at school and work without much of a problem, go on and spend more time at work. However, give yourself some time to absorb all of it and then decide. 
  • Give priority to schoolwork and then pay attention to whichever side hustle you have chosen. Never neglect your studies.
  • Understand your requirements but do not overburden yourself. Choose a flexible part-time job that you can do comfortably. 
  • Request family members, teachers, or friends for help whenever needed. They are your support system.
  • Be 100% conscious when it comes to proper utilization of time. Try not to waste it. Do not be confused! Let us clarify; wasting time and taking a break are two different things. While it is okay to take breaks, do not idle away time by scrolling through reels (anyone knows how addictive they can be) or mindlessly binge-watching movies when you know you have a deadline to meet or an assignment due in a few days. Create a schedule that works for you and define your leisure time so that you can unwind free from guilt.  

If you are smart enough, you’ll choose a side hustle that will work as your chance to unwind. Dog walking is pretty relaxing; it helps you have a physical and emotional break while keeping you in shape. Writing, making videos, and preparing online tutorials are also great options. There’s an ocean of opportunities. You are young, so this is your time. Grab as much experience as you can!

3. What are some examples of teens who’ve found success with side hustles?

Today, teens are taking on side hustles and earning more readily than ever. It has led to quite a lot of success stories. For example:  

  • Kamaria Warren founded the Brown Girls Stationary and is now successfully marketing many products like stationery, school supplies, vegan purses, and accessories for girls. 
  • Lily Born saw how her grandfather would spill drinks as he had Parkinson’s disease. She designed a three-legged cup called the Kangaroo Cup and perfected it. Now, at 16, she sells a significant number of such cups around the world.  
  • Vinusha MK has taken up baking and is an excellent baker selling her cupcakes themed on seasonal colors and flavors. 
  • Kayla Nicole has now made video creation her full-time job. Check out Nicole Tv (her channel on YouTube). Currently, her channel has millions of subscribers. She uses her phone camera to make funny and relatable videos drawing inspiration from daily life.  

It is interesting how teens are making money by choosing to exploit their knowledge, hobbies, and passions. You can do the same. Be determined to bring a change like these teens who enjoy pursuing their side hustles alongside their studies.

Donata Tamulionyte

Donata Tamulionyte

Community Manager, Pawns.app

Donata is the heart and soul behind the Pawns.app community. As a communication wizard, she brings an exceptional blend of specificity, gentleness, and patience to her role. Donata has a remarkable ability to "read" people just from a few sentences, making her the perfect conversational partner for our users worldwide. When she's not building community connections, you'll find her singing, crafting melodies, and writing. Donata also loves animals and enjoys spending time analyzing their behavior and engaging in training.

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