On this page you’ll find all the best ways to make money in your spare time whilst at university based on our own experience. We’ll keep adding new ways to this page so go ahead and bookmark it. And please do share your own ideas in the comments!
An increasingly popular way for students to make money is to fill out online surveys in their spare time. Research companies are always recruiting new members worldwide to answer surveys and test new products.
For a few minutes of form filling, you can make a couple of quid which is paid as cash or rewards. You can bag up to £3 ($5) for some surveys!
A few good ones to try are:Toluna, LifePoints, InboxPounds, Onepoll, i-Say, Opinion Outpost, Panel Opinion, The Opinion Panel, YouGov, Pinecone, SurveyBods, Hiving, Panel Base, Prolific, Valued Opinions, Survey Junkie, New Vista
Also sign up for Swagbucks which rewards you for surveys as well as simply surfing the web, watching videos and playing games.
Update: See our new full guide to the best paid online surveys!
Paid for searching the web
Interested in earning cash for doing what you already do online? This has to be one of the easiest methods of making money online without really any effort or change in your behaviour.
This innovative idea by Qmee.com rewards you for searching in Google, Bing or Yahoo. You just install a simple add-on to your browser and when you conduct a search there may be a few sponsored results alongside your normal search
Each Qmee result has a cash reward attached – if you are interested in it simply click on it and collect your reward.
The best thing is there is no minimum to cashout – our first one was just 72p wired to our Paypal account. You also have the option to donate it to charity.
Sign up now for free and start earning from your own searches!
Online market trading
Whilst this isn’t necessarily an easy way to make money, investing in stock markets can be lucrative if you learn to do it properly and safely. By the same token, you may suffer significant losses if you don’t take it seriously.
Today there is no need to fund the yachts of Wolf of Wall Street style stock brokers. You can do it all yourself with the help of online market trading platforms.
Having spent many hours researching this new opportunity, I’ve been experimenting with the two biggest platforms: Plus500 and eToro.com. Both offer free practice accounts.
Overall I prefer eToro with over 8 million users worldwide. It has been featured in a BBC 2documentary “Traders: Millions by the Minute” and recently began sponsoring several Premier League football clubs.
Start your own website
Interested in generating passive income? You need a website. It’s THE way to make money while you sleep.
Starting a website with Bluehost takes less than 20 minutes, costs hardly anything and can be done by an 82 year-old. It only takes a bit of plugging on social media to get your first visitors, and there are plenty of ways to monetise your site.
Save the Student is just one example of a successful website, started at university by Owen Burek in his first year, which has since grown into a full-time and sizable enterprise.
Read Owen’s step-by-step guide on how to start a website in 20 minutes. It’s really one of the best assets you can have.
If you’ve got a good presence on social media or perhaps you even have a blog or website, you can start bringing in money immediately by promoting all sorts of companies, products, services and offers online.
Sign up as a publisher on the Awin network, check their offers blog or browse the merchant listings to find something you think your friends would be interested in, grab your affiliate link and share it. If someone buys (can be within up to 90 days) using your link you’ll make a nice commission.
To take it a step further, set up a website (read our guide) or a topical Facebook page and invite all your friends to join it and post your affiliate offers on there.
A part-time job is the obvious first choice, opted for by most students looking to supplement their student loan. It provides a pretty steady flow of income and can enable you to gain valuable work experience.
But good jobs are not always easy to find!
Start with our student job search, then check local classifieds and your university careers service for vacancies.
It’s also worth signing up with CV Library, a free service which will match your CV with suitable part-time jobs and career opportunities.
It’s a classic money-maker, and for good reason. You get paid (well) to watch TV and not very much else – hopefully!
If you are wondering what to charge have a look at local ads, but you can expect to be paid over £9ph even if you aren’t trained in childcare.
Aside from advertising yourself, it’s free to create a profile on Care Babysitting. It really can be easy money (unless you get stuck with the child from hell!).
Our guide to babysitting walks you through the main considerations. For instance, in the UK you will need a DBS (Disclosure and Barring Service) check to look after small children, even though some parents may not ask for one.
Perhaps you enjoy writing, managing Facebook pages or doing a little bit of graphic design in your spare time. There are so many freelance jobs out there that require simple skills or just time that someone else might not have.
And the best thing about freelancing is that you can work for clients in the UK and around the world with just an internet connection from home, to your own hours whilst developing valuable skills.
A great place to start is with the leading freelance site Upwork.com. Or try using our student job search to find freelance jobs closer to home.
Bitcoin and cryptocurrencies
Update. We’re increasingly being asked about how to make money from Bitcoin (and other cryptocurrencies). This isn’t surprising given the ever-growing hype and stories of kids making millions.
Please don’t rush into buying Bitcoin to make money. It’s really important to know what you’re getting involved with. Read our new how to buy Bitcoin tutorial which explains everything you need to know.
There are many other creative ways to make money as a student, such as our 50 business ideas.