The Christmas season is often synonymous with spending money. Unfortunately, knowing you might receive a credit card bill in January that you can’t pay in full can put a damper on your holiday festivities.
Luckily, there are several ways to make money for Christmas so that you don’t ruin your budget.
If you need spending money this holiday season, consider using these ideas to make some extra cash.
How to Make Extra Money for Christmas
In alphabetical order, this list of ways to make money during the holidays covers everything from simple, one-step ideas to second jobs to work-from-home side hustles and more.
Pick one or two that appeal to you and give your Christmas budget a little extra padding.
The holidays are a time of gatherings and social outings, many of which are adult-only. This means that babysitters are in high demand.
Make flyers to distribute in your neighborhood, send an email to friends and family or put out a social media post letting people know you are available to watch their kids.
2. Be a Mystery Shopper
As a mystery shopper, you’ll work as an independent contractor to help companies ensure their products are marketed properly.
You might even get asked to order a meal at a restaurant or make another type of purchase to gauge both product quality and customer service.
Mystery shopping companies typically give you a stipend to cover your expenses or pay you enough to cover your expenses while netting a profit.
3. Be a Seasonal Customer Service Representative
Companies everywhere are hiring seasonal customer service representatives to handle the increase in sales during the holidays.
You can find online customer service representative jobs by searching on sites like Indeed. With these opportunities, you can work from home.
Alternatively, you can check with local retailers to find out if they need cashiers or customer service reps to get them through the Christmas season.
4. Charge Scooters
Do you live in an area where there are a lot of scooters for rent? If so, you might be able to earn extra cash by charging scooters.
To get started, download an app from a company such as Lime. From there, you’ll receive chargers so that you can charge scooters that are low on battery.
Each night, you can find and bring scooters home to your garage for charging. Then, drop them off at the designated drop-off spot in the morning to make a few extra dollars.
5. Deliver Food
If you don’t mind delivery jobs, you might want to sign up for a food delivery app to make some money for Christmas.
For example, with DoorDash, you download the app and check notifications for available deliveries. You’ll get paid a predetermined amount for each delivery and keep 100% of any tips you receive.
6. Donate Plasma
Donating plasma is a popular side hustle, especially among college students.
Depending on where you live, you could make up to $50 every time you donate plasma. Better yet, you could be helping to save a life.
It usually takes about an hour to donate plasma, and you can donate roughly once a week.
7. Drive People
If you enjoy socializing and driving, another way to earn money is to drive people to their destinations. You can do this with rideshare services like Uber or Lyft.
As a rideshare driver, you choose the hours you work. Sign into your app of choice when you’re available, then sign out when you’re not.
You get a pre-set payment amount for each ride as well as the potential to earn tips.
8. Flip Items
Buying items and reselling them is another way to earn extra cash. For instance, you can find cheap (or free) items on apps and sites like Craigslist.
Then, you can turn around and sell those items on the same platforms. The key to success is knowing when you’re getting a good deal on the things you buy.
When you find a good deal, scoop the item up ASAP so you can turn around and sell it quickly.
Do you have skills you can use to make money as a freelancer? Sites like Upwork and Fiverr post jobs for freelancers with a variety of skills.
These sites are filled with clients searching for side hustlers who can help with a variety of projects, including technology, art, graphic design, writing, social media and more.
Once you create a profile on these sites, you can search for jobs that fit your areas of expertise. You might also receive invites from clients to interview for jobs they are trying to fill.
10. Get Free Gift Cards
Did you know that there are a number of ways you can get free gift cards? This may sound too good to be true, but it’s not.
You can get gift cards to stores that sell items you want to purchase for Christmas, helping you to reduce your actual cash output as you shop for your loved ones.
11. Get Paid to Lose Weight
Do you have weight loss goals you’d like to reach? How would you like to earn some cash when you reach your goals?
There are companies that will pay you cash to lose weight. You can get healthier and earn money for Christmas all at the same time. It’s a win-win.
12. Lower Your Bills
Another way to earn money for Christmas is to lower your bills. By spending less on bills you have to pay, you’ll have more money in your pocket for Christmas.
For example, you could work to spend less on utilities by controlling your water and electricity usage. You could even save money by finding creative ways to spend less money on groceries.
You could even look for the best cheap auto insurance companies and reduce your insurance premiums.
13. Make Money Shopping
You can’t always avoid shopping, especially during the holiday season. However, you can make money while you shop.
Ibotta is an app that will show you a list of items you can get cash back on. After making your eligible purchases, simply scan your receipt using the app to receive rebates.
Similarly, Rakuten is a cash back shopping portal. When you shop online by accessing stores through Rakuten, you’ll earn a percentage back on every purchase.
14. Open a Bank Account
Many banks pay a sizable bonus when you open a checking or savings account as a new customer.
The best bank promotions and bonuses could help you earn $100, $200 or more for opening a new account and completing qualifying activities.
15. Rent a Room (or Your House)
Do you have an extra room in your house that you’re not using? What about a vacation property or a second home?
With many people looking for affordable accommodations while traveling, especially during the holidays, listing your spare bedroom or home on Airbnb can help you make money for Christmas.
If you don’t have an extra room to rent but have space in your garage or a spare closet, you could rent it to someone who needs storage space using Neighbor Storage.
16. Retail Arbitrage
Some people make money by purchasing retail products such as clearance items and reselling them. This side hustle is called retail arbitrage.
There is a learning curve to this side gig, but it is possible to make money with retail arbitrage.
If you like shopping, this might be a good way to help you make money for Christmas and even find some great deals on holiday gifts.
17. Sell Your Creations
If you have a gift for making nifty crafts, you could sell them for cash.
Check out admission rules to local craft shows or vendor fairs, then bring your creations to sell to shoppers.
You could also sell your items on Etsy to reach a broader audience.
18. Sell Your Unwanted Stuff
Do you have items in your basement, garage or closet that you no longer use? Why not sell them to make money for Christmas expenses?
Go through your house and find things you no longer need. Post these items on sites like Craigslist to earn some extra cash.
19. Start a Blog
Although starting a blog likely won’t earn you money in time for this Christmas, it can help you make money for next Christmas.
Regardless of your technical skills, you can start a blog in ten minutes or less. If you have valuable information you can share to help others, a blog is an excellent way to make money by sharing your expertise.
Swagbucks will pay you in the form of gift cards to your favorite retailers or via PayPal payouts.
You can get paid for a variety of activities, such as playing games, searching the web, watching videos and more.
You’ll earn points for every activity, and those points can be used to get gift cards or PayPal cash.
21. Test Websites
Did you know that you can get paid to test websites? Yes, you read that correctly. There are several companies that will pay you to perform tests on websites.
Website testing helps companies determine and perfect the user-friendliness of websites. Most tests only take 20 minutes, and they pay decent cash for the work you do.
22. Use Micro Job Sites
Micro jobs are small, online jobs you can do quickly. For example, if you work with Amazon Mechanical Turk, you might be asked to do data verification work or image processing.
Another option is Clickworker, where you may be asked to do data categorization, proofreading or web research.
23. Walk Dogs or Pet Sit
Many people travel during the holidays and need someone to take care of their furry family members. Why not make money by walking dogs or by pet sitting?
One good thing about this side hustle is that you can choose the types of jobs you want to offer. For instance, you may just want to walk dogs. Or, you might prefer to pet sit cats.
Pay varies based on the job and on the wage you set. You can create a profile on a site like Rover to find pet care jobs near you.
24. Work Events that Need Staff
Oftentimes, local events occur during the holiday season. These events may need staff to help them go off without a hitch. For example, you could work serving food for holiday parties.
Or, you could work as a food sample demonstrator at local stores. Check with nearby stores for job openings.
You might be able to find opportunities in the “Events” section on Craigslist as well. Other options include checking on popular job search sites.
25. Work Local Odd-Jobs
Handyman work is also a popular choice. Some people may need help doing minor home repairs or rearranging furniture.
Additionally, given the cold weather, you might be able to find jobs shoveling snow or helping people clean and prepare their pools for winter.
There’s no reason to go into debt for holiday expenses when there are many ways that you can make money for Christmas.
No matter what your skills are, you can find a way to get money when you need it now. Whether it’s helping others or selling your stuff, there are plenty of opportunities to add some cash to your wallet.