2020 has been a strange year. Christmas will feel rather unusual for many of us, but will likely still cause a dent in the wallet. With that in mind, we have put together a list of 15 ways that you can easily earn cash for Christmas.
Choose a few to focus on, and you’ll be able to treat your nearest and dearest without worrying too much about the financial fallout.
Each of these tips is designed to help you make quick cash for the holidays. Better still, you can combine various strategies to increase your earnings. You could also employ variations of them throughout the year to allow you to make money beyond this holiday season.
Now is the time to get started if you want to enjoy a better and more stress-free Christmas this year.
Remember: the sooner you get moving, the more you can earn.
Creative Ways To Make Cash for Christmas
1. Make Christmas crafts to sell
This traditional source of extra cash for many has been affected by the cancellation of most Christmas fairs in 2020. But, while Christmas fairs may be a fun way to sell your crafts, they’re certainly not the only way.
More and more people are using social media, marketplaces like Etsy and even their own websites to sell craft items. If you are good at crafts but a little short on ideas, then resources like this Christmas Craft Book can help.
This is perhaps one of the most enjoyable but more involved ways to sell items for holiday cash. Here are a few things you should keep in mind:
- Be organized and start working ahead of time.
- Set a strict budget for purchasing your supplies (take advantage of sales whenever possible).
- Make sure your presentation and packaging stand out from the rest.
- Include business cards so customers have a way to get in touch if they want more items.
- If you have an original idea keep it to yourself. Other crafters WILL copy your ideas!
- Make things that you can adapt – this way you can charge more for personalization or simply offer different variations throughout the year.
- Price items clearly. Don’t forget shipping costs, if applicable.
- Be clear about delivery times. This is particularly important if you are doing custom pieces or making to order, rather than selling stock which has already been created.
If you’re interested in selling craft items on a more permanent basis, check out this Etsy case study.
2. Turn your creative ideas into money with Print On Demand websites
If you are creative but don’t want the hassle of having to make and ship items, then Print On Demand may be the answer for you. All you need to do is upload your original work and you can use the platform to turn it into a wide variety of commercial products – from tote bags to T-shirts.
These sites are great if you do not want to have to deal with inventory, production, printing, shipment, or customer service. The downside is that, since you are essentially being paid royalties, you will not make an enormous amount on each sale.
This really is a good option for the holidays and beyond. Once you have done the initial work of creating and uploading work you are essentially getting passive income. Just remember that you still need to do market your work if you want those sales to keep coming!
You can get more information on how all of this works in this review of Society6.
3. Make your own printables
Holiday printables are extremely popular, be they for Christmas or any other seasonal celebration. It is surprising how simple some popular printables are.
Some people create printable art, but a large segment of the market is made up of practical printables. To-do lists and tracking sheets are very popular.
You can sell printables on Etsy, through Shopify, or simply using an e-commerce plug-in on your website.
To give you an idea of how doable this is, we have created a FREE printable for you to download and track the extra cash for Christmas that you make.
How to make money by shopping during the Christmas season
4. Buy via cashback sites
This is one of the easiest ways to make some money. Purchasing items you plan to buy anyway through a cashback site really is a no-brainer. The only downside to this is that it can sometimes take a while for the cashback to come through.
Check out how much Ben has earned on TopCashback after being a member for several years:
Cashback sites receive a commission from online retailers and organisations for referring customers. They pass some or all of this commission to you when you make a purchase. It really is as simple as that.
If you’re buying things online for Christmas anyway, it’s crazy not to see if you can earn cashback for them.
5. Scan your receipts
Scanning the receipts you receive in stores can also earn you some money. It isn’t going to be a lot, but over time it does add up.
You can download apps that enable you to scan your physical receipts. You get rewarded according to the apps point system and you can usually cash out for gift cards or vouchers.
Although it doesn´t cost you anything, this is not for everyone. If it has piqued your interest you can check out this review of Receipt Hog.
6. Hit the sales for items you can flip
If you have an eye for a good deal then this could be a great way for you to earn a significant amount of extra cash for Christmas.
Garage sales, car boot sales, and flea markets are likely going to be your go-to sources here. Online market places and regular stores are less likely sources of material to flip for a profit, but occasionally you can strike gold.
The key here is to specialize in what you know so that you can spot when a seller has not realized the true value of what they are offering.
Once you have snapped up those deals then it is time to turn the items around and sell them at a profit. You want to find the most appropriate place to sell in order to be able to pocket as much money as possible. Options include your own car boot sale, eBay, and Facebook Marketplace among others.
Just be careful as flipping objects can become addictive!
Make space for the holiday decorations by finding things to sell for quick cash
7. Sell items you no longer need
We all have items at home that we no longer need. Why not kill two birds with one stone and do a quick declutter before Christmas?
A clean house will mean less stress preparing for the holiday season. It will be easier to decorate for the season too, and – if you’re allowed to host guests this year – they’ll admire your organised home!
Alongside toys, clothes and gadgets, you might even find that you have Christmas decorations that you no longer need. By applying the same selling strategy as you would when flipping objects you can turn your clutter into cash.
8. Sell your old books and music
You can make more Christmas cash if you take the time to go to the right places to sell books and music.
There are a large number of sites where you can sell used books, especially textbooks. Since using the right site can make a big difference we have put together a guide on how and where to sell. If you need to sell fast rather than trying to maximize your profit, then Amazon may be the choice for you, as we explain here.
In our experience one of the best sites for selling CDs and records is Discogs. As with books, selling CDs can be quite time consuming. So, if you want a quicker option you should check out Music Magpie or its American version, Decluttr. These marketplaces make the whole process easier and also accept books and computer games. Just be aware of how much money you might be forfeiting, as we explain in this review.
Penny for your thoughts: Get holiday money by sharing your insights
9. Take surveys
Survey sites can be a great source for some extra cash but they can also be a bit of a pain. Not to mention the scams that are out there. This is why at HomeWorkingClub we have reviewed so many sites for you.
There are two particular sites you should consider: Swagbucks and PrizeRebel. These are sites where you can earn rewards by completing a variety of different online activities and tasks, not just surveys.
These sites are great options because it is fairly easy to quickly earn enough to redeem small gift cards.
Although we do recommend these sites, there are some elements on each which are just not worth your time. So if you are planning to use them then you might want to check out our Swagbucks and PrizeRebel reviews first.
This has to be one of our favourite ways to make some quick cash on the side. The wonderful thing about user testing is that you can’t really get it wrong.
UserTesting is a platform that allows companies to try out new websites and apps on real-life users. Testers use the software to record their screen as they work through a series of tasks on a website or app. Companies then use this feedback to improve their sites and systems.
This work can be a lot of fun once you get past the fact that your voice and screen are being recorded. The biggest downside is that there’s not always a huge number of tests. Still, leaving UserTesting open in a browser tab at all times allows you to hear the “ping” of a new test so you can quickly grab it.
As you can see from the screenshot below, income from user testing can quickly add up. There are some other similar sites you can check out here.
Help your budget by giving your neighbours a helping hand during the holidays
The holiday season is a very busy time of the year and this year has presented many additional challenges. You could offer your services to neighbours for everything from shovelling snow to putting up Christmas lights.
Still, we think these services, which you could offer year-round but for which there may now be an additional demand, are the best options:
11. Offer pet sitting or dog walking services
Due to the cold weather and health restrictions, you may find that some of your neighbours would be thrilled to pay you to walk their dog for them. You might not be able to charge too much but if you can walk a couple of dogs simultaneously it will quickly add up.
Pet sitting might seem like a really strange suggestion right now as people are at home more than ever. But that is precisely the point. Pets have become accustomed to always having someone around.
Pet owners who wish to go out for extended periods of time, be it for Christmas shopping or to celebrate, may find they now need a pet sitter.
As the hectic holiday season approaches you will probably find plenty of parents who would love to have some help with the kids. Especially since traditional options, such as leaving the kids with granny for a few hours, may no longer be viable.
People who might never have dreamed of getting a babysitter before might now jump at the chance. Time alone to get work done or to just relax is at a premium right now.
Still, paying a trusted neighbour to take care of the little ones would probably never occur to them. You will need to put in the effort to promote this one!
Find some additional work to bring in that extra cash for Christmas
Microwork is not necessarily the most interesting thing in the world to do but each task will only take you moments to do. This means you can turn small pockets of downtime into productive money-earning opportunities.
Finding work you can do quickly could make you up to $10-15 per hour if you have enough tasks. This is why it is a good idea to sign up to multiple sites.
14. Temporary/seasonal jobs
There are plenty of seasonal jobs available around Christmas time. You really don’t need to sell Christmas trees or put on a Santa costume – unless you want to! All you need to do is keep your eyes open for opportunities.
The increase in shopping means that there is a need for extra temporary staff in all kinds of stores. Supermarkets also see increased business.
All of those Christmas presents and cards also need to be delivered. Post offices and delivery services often hire a significant number of people to help sort and distribute it all on time.
There may also be opportunities as seasonal customer service representatives. This can be a quick and easy way to get into customer service work. But remember that people tend to get very upset when something goes wrong with their Christmas purchases!
15. Freelance work
Technically many of the items on this list are freelance work but here we are talking about taking your specific skills and interests and creating an offering based on these.
Freelancing tends to be more of a year-round thing (you might even be a full-time freelancer). Still, you can definitely up your game or offer some new services in order to make some money just for the holidays.
Some of the most popular options for people getting started in the world of freelancing are writing, virtual assistant work, graphic design, and editing. But there are countless options both online and offline.
Just don’t get too caught up with getting set up – you only make money once you actually start to find and do practical work.
We have a wealth of articles about freelancing to help guide you but you really should consider taking the Freelance Kickstarter course. It is the BEST way to get off to a great start so you can bring in some money for Christmas.
There are a multitude of ways that you can make a little extra money. What matters most is that you pick something and start working on it NOW.
The great thing about learning how to make money during the Christmas season is that you are highly motivated.
Once you have seen how feasible it is to boost your income with side gigs you are not going to want to stop.
If you keep going with your side gigs they can help take some financial pressure off you year-round. You can ensure that next year will be epic by continuing to put aside that cash for Christmas!
Karen Fleming is a writer, translator, and teacher with more than 10 years of freelance experience. When she isn’t reading, writing, or taking yet another online class, she is probably doing some one-on-one tutoring or enjoying a good movie with her husband and two daughters.