I was not ready for the sudden increase in my electricity bill when winter started. I am literally paying twice as much as I did during summer and this is after I made a lot of effort to reduce my electricity use. I decided to push some side hustles to make up for the budget disturbances and here are a couple that came to mind.
1. Private Tutoring
I have found this to be a very reliable side hustle especially if you manage to build a good network of clients. You can tutor pretty much anything that you are good in (school subjects, sports, art, etc). There are parents who will even pay you good money to coach their kids life orientation. Bonus points if it is a rare and/or tough subject.
Unfortunately, it’s not very easy to get started with private tutoring. You have to advertise yourself through platforms like Facebook, Gumtree, Google Ads, etc. and work hard to build your network of clients. Once you get your first client, you can then ask if they have any friends who are looking for tutors and if you know any friends/colleagues who tutor part-time, you can ask them if their own clients also need tutoring in other subjects.
However, an easier way to approach private tutoring (especially if you are new) is by joining a local tutoring agency who will help you find clients and jobs. Unfortunately, these agencies often take a huge cut out of your paycheck but when you consider the amount of work that goes into looking for and managing clients, this cut may or may not be worth it for you.
2. Photography or Similar Paid Artwork
If you are artistic in any way, you may be able to get paid for your work depending on the industry and the demand. As for photography (personally my creative outlet), you can grow your photography business to occupy a significant portion of your monthly income. In some cases, this is the type of side hustle that can grow into a proper full time business.
How you get started will depend on the work that you do. As for photography (and similar creative fields), the best way to get started is to start by doing some free work for your friends to build a solid portfolio. You have to work hard on your marketing and advertising skills because trust me, being good with your art-form is only half of the work.
3. Work parttime for Uber/Taxify
There are two ways of approaching this one. First, if you have the time and you have a suitable car, you can join Uber or Taxify and work during your free times. You will need to be consistent if you want significant returns. A full-time Uber driver can earn as much as R7,000 per week, sometimes more so if you do your numbers right (you have to consider the time you are working and the maintenance costs for the car), this can be a great money making side hustle.
A different approach for those who don’t have the time to do their own driving is to rent out your car to Uber drivers. There is no shortage of drivers who want to work for Uber, Taxify and similar apps, however, a lot of these drivers can’t afford to purchase their own cars. If you own a car that you don’t use often, you can actually rent out your car to these Uber drivers for about R1,500 – 2,500 per week. In fact, I personally know a few colleagues/relatives who purchase cars specifically to rent them out for Uber. If this option sounds good for you, just note that you risk losing a lot of money if you dive into this without doing extensive research first.
4. Run a Food Truck/Stand
I once had a work colleague who operated a food stand during the weekends and he made some good money from it. There are businesses that rent out food trucks or you can opt to buy your own food truck from a platform like Gumtree, Facebook Marketplace or… Google. Once you have your business all set you can apply for a permit to run a food truck in your city and then learn how to cook. There is no shortage of places to sell your food if you do your research right. These places are often around hot spots like sporting events, popular tourist areas, you can even offer catering services for private functions.
5. Sell or Offer Your Unique Skills as a Service
These unique skills can be as strange as fixing broken computers or even more common skills like conducting a cat choir. If you have a unique or rare skill, there is a market for it, you just need to do lots of research and marketing to exploit it. If you are a student, you can run a clothing repair business, computer repair, custom paint-jobs for bikes/cars/scooters, vegan snacks, etc Whatever you decide to jump into, do basic research, go around asking people, create surveys, etc to determine whether there is a demand for that service. If you are interesting in creating personal/CV websites for people, check out my guide on how to host a static website for free using Amazon Web Services.