From Walking Fido to Museum Tours: Side Hustles to Earn Extra Cash

With a rapidly growing gig economy, it is becoming easier and easier to have a side hustle (or two). According to a recent survey conducted by the Federal Reserve, 31% of Americans perform some kind of side work for supplementary income. Moreover, millennials are more likely to have side hustles than older generations, with 43% of generation Y participating in the gig economy.

Side hustles are a great way to earn supplemental income, whether it’s for paying down debt or saving for a trip or home. Thanks to a proliferating number of gig economy apps and the expansion of leading platforms such as Uber and Airbnb, there are now a ton of short-term, contract-based opportunities that are just a click away. Here are a few side hustles that might be up your alley.


side hustles for dog lovers to earn extra cash like wag and rover


If you love dogs…

Wag, Rover, and Swifto are three pet care apps to consider if you are an animal lover looking for a side gig that involves some canine friends. Known as the “Uber for Dogs,” Wag is a GPS-based app that assigns on-demand walkers and sitters based on proximity, although pet owners can ultimately approve or decline a match. Whereas Rover, commonly referred to as “DogBnb,” lets users personally select a walker from their expansive database. Swifto is a less flexible option that requires you to commit to a minimum of 15 walks per week for at least 6 months (there’s no time commitment with either Wag or Rover). On the plus side, Swifto treats you as a W2 employee which means you’ll be covered by their workers' compensation policy should anything go awry.

How to start: All three apps require a formal application and vetting process. They’ll also want you to have some prior experience with dogs.


give tours with airbnb experiences


If you want to be an Airbnb host, but don’t have an extra room…

Do you love your local museums, trails, bakeries, or wine bars? Whatever it is you love about where you live, you can now share it with the world and earn some extra cash through Airbnb Experiences. According to Airbnb, these are activities that “go beyond typical tours or classes by immersing guests in each host’s unique world.” Experiences usually last a couple of hours, such as surfing classes, museum tours, or scenic runs.

How to start: Brainstorm and create an experience page on Airbnb, which you’ll then need to submit for review.


side hustles for chefs and cooks


If you’re the next Julia Child…

Those of us with impressive kitchen skills can host home-cooked dinner parties using Feastly. Like an Airbnb for foodies, the online platform connects chefs with diners looking for more intimate dining options. You can host up to several meals a week and Feastly keeps 12% of your set meal price. Just keep in mind that you’ll need enough space to comfortably entertain guests.

How to start: Take photos of your culinary masterpieces, design a menu, and submit an application to Feastly. Chefs undergo a vetting process to be approved and verified.


delivery jobs in the gig economy


If you own a car but don’t want to be a chauffeur…

There are now a lot of delivery apps that allow you to work short gigs delivering goods (instead of passengers). Uber Eats, Doordash, Caviar, Grubhub, and Orderup allow you to make money by delivering food from local restaurants to customers’ doors. Postmates allows you to deliver food and other goods, like Starbucks and dry cleaning. You set your own schedule and can earn up to $25 an hour. Another option is Amazon Flex, which allows you to deliver packages for Amazon and earn somewhere between $18 to $25 an hour.

How to start: If you have a car, car insurance, and smartphone, all you need to do is apply.

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Kirsten Schmitt is a writer based in New York City and also works in communications.  She is a graduate of Hamilton College and Columbia University Graduate School of Journalism, and loves photos as much as words.  Kirsten is on Twitter at @KirstenASchmitt.

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