How To Make Extra Money During The Holidays
Earning Extra Income During Specific Holidays
It's nice to have additional funds at hand. Below are some methods that I used to earn some extra cash throughout various holidays. They might not work with everybody, however this could give you some ideas of your own. These jobs won't make you wealthy, but a couple of extra dollars in your wallet is definitely nice.
Valentine's Day and Mother's Day
Call your local florist and find out if they need extra temporary delivery people. The two holidays that flowers are sent the most are Valentine's Day and Mother's Day. Some florists deliver boutiques and arrangements 2-3 days before the actual date of the holiday and may be over-run with orders. It would be a good idea to have some type of rapport with the florist beforehand. Maybe a month before those two holidays, introduce yourself and keep in touch.
Each place will have different guidelines. When you make the delivery, you usually have to have someone sign for the flowers, be it the recipient or a neighbor. Adhere to the florist's delivery rules, be professional and take care in not bending or snapping any stems during delivery and you may have a permanent holiday job year after year. Payment for delivery of a floral arrangement may vary, but you are usually paid per bouquet, so it's good to gather arrangements that are in the same area to save on gas. In this area, usual pay is about $2.45 per delivery. That's not too bad if you have 20 arrangements in the same area for some quick money. The added bonus is the surprise and happiness of the ones receiving the flowers.
Requirements for this job: An air conditioned vehicle to deliver the flowers.
Spooky Fun Seasonal Jobs
For the whole month of October you can get a seasonal job being a creepy character in a haunted house. Good places to look for these types of jobs are theme parks, or haunted houses that are annually run. Places like Busch Gardens, Disney World, and Universal Studios usually hire for this type of thing.
You may be hired to dress up in a creepy costume to enhance the atmosphere, run gadgets in the haunted house, lead people through the attraction or take ticket sales.
You can find haunted houses to work for in just about every state. A great resource for this is the Haunted Houses Association.
There will be guidelines you must follow. If you are one of the "creepies" in the house remember that you (usually) are not allowed to touch any of the patrons. Be sure you listen carefully to the director of the attraction when these guidelines are gone over.
Halloween & Christmas
Decorating for the Holidays
Another good way to earn some money is to decorate people's homes or yards for the holidays. Some people just don't want to deal with it and if you have a good creative eye and a sense for design, this might be the job for you.
When quoting a price, you'll have to keep in mind if this includes the cost of the decorations or not. I've found most people already have their decorations and you just have to charge for your time (usually by the hour). To set up a backyard with creepy Halloween decorations generally takes 1 to 2 hours in my experience. Decorating the entire inside of a house with creepy creations usually takes a bit longer.
If people want you to purchase the decorations for them, get specifics on what they want and make sure you know exactly how much they want to spend in decorations. If you are doing the shopping, you should include a 20% fee for your trouble (shopping can be time consuming). Be sure to get your shopping money up front.
For Christmas, you'll probably need access to a ladder for putting up those lights. It would be good to have a helper regardless of what you are setting up though.
This is just a guideline, but you can probably charge between $50 - $75 per hour to do set up (and share it with your helper). If part of the service includes returning at the end of the holiday season and breaking it all down and packing it up you certainly want to charge toward the higher end of the scale (maybe even going up to $95 per hour or more). The pricing really depends on the area you are in. Keep in mind how far you have to travel to the location as well.
Of course if you are supplying your own props, you certainly want to return at the end of the holiday and break down the setup. Many times the decorations are a combination of your own stuff and the customer's items. Always mark your own items with initials or such in an inconspicuous place so that you (and the client) can tell whose is whose without any confusion. It's also a good idea to bring a pad and pen and write down exactly what items of yours you are leaving at the house at the initial setup, so you have a reference when you return.
Most people will want their homes decorated in early December, if not late November, so plan your time accordingly.
Thanksgiving & Christmas
Painting Store Front Windows
If you have an artistic flair, you can paint holiday scenes on storefront windows. Be sure to ask the shop owner at least by early November if they are interested. Most people will want the windows completed by Black Friday (the weekend after Thanksgiving) If you have any previous pictures of paintings or illustrations you've done to show them, that is a bonus.
You can hand sketch a picture and place it on the inside of the window and trace it on the outside with paint, or simply free-hand it if you so desire. I've done these myself and they are usually free-handed. Some businesses may want the company logo design incorporated on their window. You can ask for this beforehand and using a projector, outline the logo at the size you need on newsprint paper to later place on the inside of the window.
You can usually charge $20 - $50 per window. If they have a lot of windows, you might want to lessen the price slightly per window for volume pricing. Be sure to take plenty of photographs of your finished work to put in your portfolio to show prospective clients the following year.
Requirements / Supplies needed: poster paint (with just a touch of liquid dish soap added to make removal easier), paintbrushes and any templates you may need.
Ways to Bring in Extra Money
What Would You Rather Do?
If you wanted to earn some extra money for the holidays, which job would be best suited to you?
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