The holidays aren’t cheap, especially if you love buying lots of gifts for your kiddos and extended family or if you plan on traveling. Additionally, if your goal is to start the New Year on more solid financial footing, making a few extra bucks in the last months of the year can help you pay off those pesky credit cards and maybe even stock away some funds in your savings account. No need to dive into the couch cushions looking for spare change. Here are five great ways to make a little extra money over the holidays:
1. Ask For More Overtime/Shifts
Most employers try to limit the amount of overtime their workers perform, but since so many people travel during the holidays, it’s easy for an employer to get stretched thin. It never hurts to let your boss know that you are looking for overtime opportunities. When things get hectic, your boss will look to you first. Likewise, let your co-workers know that you should be the first one to call if they need someone to cover a shift. Are you on salary? Time to ask for a raise!
2. Get a Temporary Part-Time Job
This time of year, retailers across the country need an influx of additional temp workers to shoulder the floods of shoppers who will descend upon their establishment. As long as you have a pulse, you can probably apply to a major retailer and get hired. However, consider other options aside from retail. Warehouses also desperately need temporary workers during the holidays and typically pay a higher hourly wage than retailers. Shipping companies are also worth looking into.
3. Get a Gig from Your Neighbors
There’s got to be someone in your neighborhood or extended family who either doesn’t want to or can’t shovel their driveway anymore. Put the word out on social media and neighborly groups, like Nextdoor, that you are available for gigs. Great options for this time of the season include:
- Shoveling sidewalks and driveways
- Pet and house sitting while neighbors are on vacation
- Putting up and taking down Christmas and holiday lights
If you’ve got a talent, put it to work during the holiday season. Again, social media can help you get the word out. There are also lots of freelance websites, like Fiverr, Upwork, Freelancer, and more that can match you with those looking for your talents. There is a nearly endless supply of freelance services that you can provide, anything from data entry to blog writing and graphic design. Here are some excellent holiday-themed options:
- Photographer for holiday parties
- Party planner/coordinator for holiday parties
- Personalized holiday card designer
- Christmas letter writer
5. Sell Your Arts and Crafts
Are you Martha Stewart’s long-lost spirit twin? If you love making food, crafts, or other one-of-a-kind items, how about selling them during the holidays? Your family, neighbors, and friends are probably desperately looking for unique holiday gifts, and you can also reach the world through sites like Etsy. Here are just a few food/craft ideas:
- Christmas pies
- Cookies shaped like dreidels or menorahs
- Handmade Christmas ornaments
- Hanukah or Christmas jewelry
- Knitted ugly Christmas sweaters
At the end of the day, think about where your talents lie and how much effort you are willing to put into grabbing extra Christmas cash. Working overtime or snagging a temp job are probably your easiest bets, but performing gigs, freelancing, or making crafts can be a lot of fun and offer optimal flexibility.
If you really want to get on top of your finances in the new year, consider starting a Money Club!
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