Easy Ways for Students to Earn Cash Over the Summer


Many students rely on the summer holidays to earn some extra cash. It can be tricky to balance studying and sports or other commitments during the school year. Some find that their only real option for earning money is to take part in summertime work. If you focus on what you naturally enjoy doing or are willing to work out of your comfort zone, you may find that a little creativity goes a long way and can plump up your bank account. 

Sell Your Old Textbooks 

Check to see if your college bookstore can restock your textbooks. If you have unused college textbooks in great shape, there are plenty of ways to recoup a portion of your money. You can look online and see what used versions are going for and sell them privately. 

Many campuses have book sites and student-organized forums that use social media so that you can sell your old ones and even purchase used textbooks for your upcoming classes at a fraction of the cost. Ensure that the edition you are looking for is still on the reading list if you are purchasing used as some editions change. 

Selling Your Stock Photos 

If you have a knack for photography and enjoy taking pictures of pets, nature, food, scenery and other items, why not consider selling your photos? 

Check out the stock agencies online to see what the details are. Every time a person downloads your photo, you will get paid. This is an easy way to turn your creative ideas into cash. See what kinds of pictures are selling often for blogs, social media posts, etc. by reviewing some of your favorite businesses. Maybe you want to get together with your friends and have a modeling party and act out certain scenarios. Think of "studying student," or "dancing in the rain," or "Happy New Year," to get some fun photos.

Rent out your campus room 

Many students return home for the summer and end up paying continuous rent for an off-campus space that they aren't even using. Renting out your room could be a great option. You need to check with your landlord to determine if your lease allows subletting before you post an ad. Once you get your landlord's permission, you could have someone rent your space temporarily. 

If you are considering this scenario and currently live with others, you will need to chat with your roommates. Be sure to ask for references once you find someone to sublet. It is essential to draft up a sublease agreement that covers details including, the cost and due date of rent, the start and end dates of this rental agreement and any other pertinent info such as no pets, etc. 

Perhaps, your landlord already has a sublease agreement available that you can utilize. You can access different online templates if you need to find an agreement. There may be sites in your area dedicated to short-term rentals that you can use as a resource too. 

Freelance Programming, Writing, Photography and Graphic Design 

Freelancing opportunities are endless depending on what you are interested in. There are numerous ghostwriting opportunities, photography and graphic design options and a huge need for programmers. If you have a marketable skill, advertise it and see what opportunities arise. Let friends and family know you are in the market and use your networking skills to drum up some jobs. Consider advertising your skills with local businesses to see if there are any takers. 

Running Errands 

Do you like getting out and about? Do you have a reliable vehicle, are over 18 years old and have a smartphone? You could utilize an app-based service and try to become a courier. These individuals are responsible for collecting packages and delivering them to clients. This can range from office supplies to take-out food and more. Simply download a service app and look for errand listings in your area. Alternatively, you could put a sign up on a mailbox or ask any elderly neighbors if they need their groceries delivered, etc. 

Teaching Things You Know

Tutoring is a great option if you are awesome at a certain subject or skill. Do you play an instrument? Do you excel in English, science, or math? There are plenty of options to provide music or academic lessons. Perhaps, you are fluent in another language? There may be options to work as a language tutor in your neighborhood. 

Showcase your skills at local tutoring locations and libraries. If your school has a tutoring center, speak with someone about how to offer your services. Figure out what times you will be available with your schedule and put yourself out there! This can be a great side gig that also looks excellent on your resume. 

Taking Online Paid Surveys 

Did you know that some reputable companies will pay for your opinion via online surveys? Imagine, sitting in your PJ's and earning some cash! Consider joining focus groups or looking for online surveys to share your feedback on certain services and products. The compensation rate varies by survey and by company. 

Always do your homework to make sure that the survey is legit before you submit personal information. Here are some tips to point out if the online survey is accurate or if it is a scam:

  • If there is a fee to participate in the survey, stay away!
  • If there are tons of complaints on forums or review sites, heed these warnings and look elsewhere.
  • If the payouts sound too fabulous, they are most likely fake.
  • If the site is looking to collect your personal information and there is a no Privacy Policy...run don't walk away!
  • If the website doesn't offer any information about their business. 

Pet Sitting and Babysitting

Many people travel during the summer months and need a reliable person to take care of their house or their pets. Lots of parents don't get any holidays over summer break and are desperate for childcare. Ask family and friends if they have any connections or could utilize your services. 

Pet sitting and babysitting are great ways to explore your local parks and get outside. Enjoy exercise and vitamin D and make the most of your time. If you are hanging out with young kids, consider packing a "kid kit," with some fun games, costumes, or face paints depending on their ages and check with the parents first of course.

Thankfully, with a little networking and creativity, there are plenty of ways to make some extra cash over the summer months. Think about what you like to do and where you like to hang out. Are you a certified lifeguard? Do you love playing piano or guitar and could offer lessons? Maybe you have a knack for making handmade jewelry or love to bake. Stay open-minded and creative and see what happens.