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Low Effort Ways to Get Extra Cash For The Holidays

By Chonce Maddox
November 27, 2019

Wondering how to make extra money for the holidays? 

A popular recommendation you might hear is to get a part-time or seasonal job. While this is common, it also requires a lot of work. You may have to commit to a schedule that conflicts with your primary job. Or worse yet, you could be asked to work extra hours over the holidays – taking you away from important family time.

Simply put, a second job with set hours may not be the best way to earn extra Christmas money. Luckily, there are several other low effort ways to make some quick cash for the holidays. 

These flexible ideas will help you earn more in your spare time so you can afford all your planned and unplanned holiday spending. Take a look.

Sell Items From Your Home

Selling items you no longer want or need is a low effort way to make some quick cash. Plus, you can get rid of your clutter. 

So, take a look at items lying around your house that you can sell online to generate money for the holidays. Consider selling things like clothing, furniture, electronics, home decor, toys, etc. You may even find gems from friends or family to sell. 

Recently, I stopped by my mom’s house and she was about to throw out my brother’s gaming chair since he’s getting a new one for Christmas. I offered to take it so I can sell it online. They didn’t mind at all. 

You can sell items quickly using resources like Facebook Marketplace and OfferUp. Just remember to be safe and only accept cash transactions. Also, bring a friend with you and meet buyers in a public area if you don’t want to share your address. 


Deliver Food

Food delivery apps like DoorDash have become extremely popular. What’s nice is that these apps provide you with an opportunity to earn money by delivering food locally. 

These apps pay weekly, and you can set a goal to earn $100 or more per week during your spare time. 

Charge Electric Scooters

If you live in a city that offers Bird or Lime scooters, you can charge these scooters to earn some quick cash for the holidays. Use the apps to locate scooters in need of charging. Pick them up and charge them in your home overnight, then put them back on the street for usage the next day. 

This is a super easy side hustle that can even be paired with another extra stream of income. 

Take Surveys and Complete Short Tasks

Taking surveys online won’t make you rich, but that shouldn’t be a problem if you’re just looking for a quick way to make some Christmas money. 

Survey sites like Pinecone Research and Opinion Outpost pay cash for each survey you take. Or, you can receive gift cards which can be convenient for holiday shopping. Sites like Survey Junkie, Swagbucks, and MyPoints are also great options. 

Swagbucks and MyPoints will reward you for completing short tasks like watching videos, playing games, shopping online, finding deals, and even searching the web. Log on to any of these sites during your spare time (even when you’re watching TV) and earn extra cash easily. 

Most survey sites allow you to join as long as you’re 13 or older. This means teens can sign up as well and earn some extra money if they’re looking to get holiday gifts for the family. 

Start Pet Sitting

If you love pets, consider walking dogs or pet sitting to earn cash for the holidays. Walking dogs in the area is also a great way to exercise and get to know your neighbors. You may need to network and ask around to start finding clients, but you can also set up a profile on Rover to advertise your services. 

Rover allows you to choose which services you wish to offer, set your own rates, and communicate safely with pet owners online. On average, you can expect to earn $15 to $20 per walk and $30+ per night for pet sitting.

Since many people travel during the holiday season, you may be able to score quite a few pet-sitting gigs. 


Advertise with Your Car

Drive quite a bit? Whether you have a commute to and from work or find yourself running errands, advertising with your car can be an easy side hustle. 

That’s right. Some companies pay you to put temporary advertisements on your car. These ads are easy to place and remove. You must have car insurance and drive a certain number of miles each day or week which makes this an ideal opportunity if you have a daily commute. 

Although advertising with your car can’t replace your salary, you can expect to earn anywhere from $100 to $400 per month depending on your location, the length of your commute, and the particular advertising campaign. 


Trade Stuff in for Amazon Gift Cards

I had no idea you could do this until last year. I was actually price-checking my son’s video game to sell it online when Amazon offered to buy it from me for a reasonable price. 

I opted to receive an Amazon gift card credit and mailed the video game to them. That was it. Amazon’s Trade-In program will allow you to exchange your existing Amazon devices, electronics, books, video games, and more for Amazon gift cards.


Other Fun Holiday Side Hustle Ideas

Feel free to think outside of the box when it comes to finding your ideal holiday side hustle. You may want to focus on income ideas that require very little time and energy from you. 

Or, you can choose to monetize some of your hobbies and skills. Sometimes, working on a passion project doesn’t really feel like work and these often become the best income streams. 

Here are some additional ideas to get your creative wheels turning. 

  • Sell some of your creations. If you are crafty, now is the perfect time to promote some of your items to sell on sites like Etsy or at craft shows. Think customized gift baskets, knit sweaters and outerwear, and even fun home decor. 
  • Wrap gifts. If you enjoy wrapping gifts, see if you can offer this service for others. Perhaps you can apply for a gift-wrapper position in a store or ask around to see if friends and family will pay you to take this task off their hands. 
  • Test websites. Sites like UserTesting and UserFeel will pay you to check out certain websites and review them. Generally, you can earn $10 per 20-minute video review. 
  • Focus groups. Get paid well for your opinion by participating in local and online focus groups. Sites like, Respondent, and MindSwarms will pay you to share your opinion and experience regarding different subjects. You can expect to earn anywhere from $100 to $250+ on average for an hour of your time spent at a focus group. 
  • Become a brand ambassador. Get paid to pass out samples and promote different brands at stores and events. Brand ambassador gigs are popular during the holiday season because more people are shopping. Shifts are often flexible and short so you may only be expected to work two to four hours. Search on Indeed for brand ambassador jobs near you and expect to earn $15 to $25 per hour. 


Start Taking Steps Now

How well you do financially during the holiday season all depends on your ability to plan and prepare in advance. To get going, create your holiday budget and figure out what your finances will look like over the next few weeks. 

If you feel you could benefit from earning some extra income and want to work a flexible side hustle, start narrowing down your options and create a plan to earn more money for the holidays. For ideas, just refer back to this list. Then, take action and launch your holiday side hustle!


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