Who doesn’t need a side hustle in these uncertain times? Having a few profitable secondary sources of income can help you build up a nest egg, realise your financial dreams, and provide a security blanket should something happen to your day job. Here are top ideas for a side hustle in the UK, and a look at everything you need to know about getting started.
Being realistic about your side hustle in the UK is important. The idea of a side hustle is promoted everywhere, but it’s not always as easy as those pithy blogs make it seem. First up, this is going to have to be something you will actually enjoy doing. Remember, you already have a 9-5 taking up a big chunk of your life. If you’re going to spend another few hours a week working, it’s going to have to feel both rewarding and bearable.
Secondly, be realistic about the earning potential. It’s fine to only want to bring in a little, just like it’s fine to want to find something you can eventually go full time with. Just make sure your choice aligns with your expectations. Likewise, you need the time you can realistically spend and your side hustle to align. If you’re already run ragged by work and kids, you probably can’t pick up an online PA job that’s going to need hours. If your kids are at home all day, a call center freelance job needing a quiet background probably won’t work. And so on.
Lastly, you also need to consider the start-up costs of the side hustle you choose, and whether you have the income or ability to match that. As a side note, do realise that, while there isn’t a specific side hustle tax in the UK, that doesn’t mean you can make free money. Anything you bring in through your side hustle in the UK needs to be considered as part of your overall income, and tax paid accordingly.
Side Hustle Ideas in the UK
Now you know a little more about how to choose from the many potential profitable secondary sources of income out there, let’s dive into some potential side hustles in the UK.
1) Freelance writing
The demand for freelance and gig workers in all sorts of fields is high at the moment. Especially the freelance writers, copywriters, proofreaders, editors and transcription workers are in high demand. Skills you already have can easily be leveraged to make you more profit.
If you own your own car in good condition, you could leverage it as a side hustle in the UK. There are services like Amazon and its many sisters, of course. There are also Uber Eats, Deliveroo, and other services needing a willing deliveryman.
3) Selling crafts and handiwork
Do you not have service-related skills, but you’re an ace in the kitchen or with knitting needles? Are you an excellent artist? With platforms like Etsy making it easy to sell your goods to a wide audience.
Why not harness those skills to generate some extra income? Selling crafts and handiwork can be lucrative for you.
4) Data Entry
Data entry may not sound as exciting as some of the other side hustles in the UK we mention here. However, almost everyone with an internet connection and a PC can do it. It could be entering data on a spreadsheet, or moving data between spreadsheets. It could also mean typing information into a database from paper documents and updating or verifying existing data.
Businesses regularly need admin, and not all of those businesses want to employ a staff member full-time to do it. So they are seeking to outsource these kind of tasks.
5) Rent out
You can make money renting out your home on websites such as Airbnb or Spareroom. You’ll need to prepare your home ahead of time. This will include cleaning, organizing, and setting up the right rates and rules. Once everything is in order, it’s time to start collecting revenue.
You can start by listing your property on Airbnb and promoting it as much as possible so that potential guests can find it. You can also use Airbnb’s marketing tools to grow your audience and attract new guests.
6) Become a virtual assistant
You could look at becoming a virtual assistant for someone who needs an extra hand. Virtual assistants help businesses remotely.
7) Complete microtasks online
These are small tasks that can be completed in a very short amount of time (less than an hour). The most common examples of microtasks are completing surveys and posting on social media sites.
One of the main advantages of microtasks is that they can be done at any time. This means that you don’t have to choose between your other responsibilities and making extra money. Another advantage is that it allows you to try out different things without committing too much time. Amazon Mechanical Turk and Clickworker are prominent microtask platforms.
8) Stock photo and video
Photography is a great way to earn extra money doing something you love. While having a decent camera would be preferrable You can even start with a smartphone. Resolution standards of most of the stock photo and video platforms are met by smartphones.
There are many ways that people can make money with their cameras. You can take pictures of everyday life and sell them as stock photos or images for commercial use. Shutterstock, istockphoto and Adobe Stock are most popular platforms.
9) Dog walker
We all need a little help now and again. If you’re looking for a side hustle that can fit in with your current schedule, dog walking is a great option. It can also be rewarding and enjoyable when you see a dog having fun on their walk. And if you have more than one dog to take a walk together, you can double the earnings during the same timeframe.
There are several ways to make money as a dog walker. You can charge a flat rate for each walk, or you can charge per distance walked.
10) Join an acting agency
While work as an extra on-set may not be open to people outside of major urban hubs, it’s a fun way to make some extra cash, and you will get fantastic stories out of it too. Don’t assume you don’t have the look or body for TV, either. Extras of all looks and walks of life are needed for the film and TV industry.
11) Blogging as a side hustle
Blogging isn’t a fast way to earn extra cash, but it can be a lucrative one if you create a high quality blog. There are many ways to monetize a blog, from paid sponsored posts to affiliate marketing sales and straight-up advertising. It can also be leveraged into a form of passive income that works when you can’t.
If you have special knowledge of anything, you could consider making ebooks and tutorials to help others learn. You might even want to create an e-course to sell through Udemy and similar sites.
13) Mystery Shopper
Mystery shopping is a type of in-store research. It involves a customer or participant interacting with a business to provide them with feedback on how well they are doing, how easy it is to do business there and what they think of the general experience.
In recent years, mystery shopping has become an increasingly popular side job as more businesses are looking for an alternative(and unbiased) way to measure customer satisfaction.
14) Graphic Design
Graphic design is a highly in-demand field that can help you earn an income while you hone your creative skills.
Businesses need different types of graphic design works such as logo design, packaging design, brochure design and user interface design. While some of these projects require more experience than others, if you have a passion for design you can start building your portfolio. You can get online courses to improve your skills along the way.
For one thing, you’ll be dealing with deadlines so it’s important to maintain good time management skills.
15) Sell second-hand items online
This is actually two side hustles in one! Selling home goods and, especially, clothing which you don’t need is a fantastic way to clean the house and get cash for doing it. You could even get into ‘flipping’ secondhand clothing on platforms such as eBay and turn that into a full business.
16) Become an Uber Driver
If you’re looking to earn extra cash, you may want to consider becoming an Uber driver. Obviously, having your own vehicle comes quite convenient, if your are planning to become a Uber driver as a side hustle in the UK. However If you don’t own a vehicle, Uber offers access to rental and leasing solutions.
The best thing about being an Uber driver is that it’s flexible: you can choose your own hours. The flexible schedule can make it easy for you to work around your daily obligations. You need to be older than 21 and hold a valid UK driver’s licence to become a Uber driver.
Working as a translator can be a great option for earning extra income from home. If you speak another language you can utilize it by translating texts. You can sign up for platforms such as Upwork or Freelancer to get in touch with people and businesses need translation services.
Making translations from one language to another not only gets you money, but it can also allow you to learn new skills and build a network.
There you have it! All of these realistic and profitable side hustles in the UK can help you have an alternative or passive income source. They can help you save money, achieve financial freedom and take the strain off your budget while giving you fun ways to make more cash and keep yourself busy in hours you would otherwise waste.