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, realize 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 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’ve 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 realize 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.
Freelance writing allows you to use your creativity and expertise to earn extra money, and you can set your own hours and work from anywhere. Plus, there is a huge demand for freelance writers, as businesses of all sizes need content for their websites and marketing materials.
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.
It is a flexible way to earn extra income. Whether you’re delivering food, groceries, or packages, you can usually set your own hours and choose how many shifts you want to work.
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? Platforms like Etsy make 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. You can embrace “print on demand” business model in the beginning which would allow you to operate without handling the storage.
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 this kind of tasks. Most of the data entry roles suit online and remote working.
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. A virtual assistant is a person who provides administrative, secretarial, or other types of support to an organization or individual remotely. That means they don’t work in the same office as the person or team they’re supporting. Virtual assistants are usually self-employed and work from home.
Some common duties of a virtual assistant include scheduling appointments, managing social media accounts, answering customer inquiries, and handling general administrative tasks.
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 preferable 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 the 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 working 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.
The internet has revolutionized the way we learn new skills and access information. In the past, if you wanted to learn something new, you would have to find a class or workshop in your local area. Now, with a few clicks of a mouse, you can access online courses on virtually any topic imaginable. This convenience has made online learning extremely popular, and selling online courses has become a lucrative business.
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 that 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 you 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 license 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 who need translation services.
Making translations from one language to another not only gets you money, but can also allow you to learn new skills and build a network.
Dropshipping is a business model in which e-commerce businesses sell products without carrying any inventory. When a store owner receives an order from a customer, they simply contact the supplier, who will then ship the product directly to the customer’s door.
Dropshipping businesses can be run entirely online, which makes them easy to set up and manage. In the modern world of e-commerce, dropshipping has become a popular side hustle for entrepreneurs looking to start their own businesses.
19) Video Game Tester
Video games are a fun way to relax and unwind. However, for some people, video games are more than just a hobby. A video game tester plays new games before they’re released to the public and provide feedback to the developers. For many people, working as a video game tester would be the dream job. After all, what could be better than getting paid to play video games?
However, there is a lot more to being a video game tester than just playing games. Video game testers are responsible for finding and reporting bugs and glitches in games before they are released. This can be a time-consuming and tedious process, but it is essential to make sure that games are of the highest quality before they reach the hands of consumers.
In recent years, there has been a growing trend of people taking up gardening as a side hustle in the UK. With the ever-increasing cost of living, many people are looking for ways to supplement their income, and gardening provides a great opportunity to do just that.
There are many ways to make money from gardening, from selling produce at farmers’ markets to offering landscaping services. And with the current popularity of superfoods and organic produce, there is a growing demand for homegrown fruits and vegetables.
21) Social Media Manager
Social media marketing is a rapidly growing field that can provide great benefits for businesses. Managing and coordinating social media accounts is important for any business. The most successful companies use social media to engage with customers and build a loyal audience. But this isn’t always easy for small to medium sized businesses(SMBs), which often don’t have the resources or expertise to handle it all themselves. Instead, they choose to outsource social media management.
As social media pages of most of the SMBs don’t need constant attention, social media management is ideal to be side hustle. Social media managers are responsible for building and maintaining online networks, making sure that the content is relevant and engaging. By successfully managing the social media accounts of SMBs, you can build your reputation by showing that you are reliable, thorough, and professional.
22) Tech Support
A tech support specialist is a person who provides technical support to other people through phone or web chat. There are many different ways that tech support specialists can work. Some tech support specialists might be responsible for answering customer questions or helping customers solve technical problems. Others might be in charge of monitoring servers or networks.
If you have the necessary skills, tech support is one of the most lucrative side hustles. It is also suitable for remote and online work. Job boards such as Indeed and and Reed are good places to look for tech support jobs.
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.