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How to Make Extra Money: Ideas for a Second Job

Updated on March 3, 2013

Working a second job first of all requires that you have a first job. This goes without saying. Next, analyze your available time that you have to devote to working a second job. If you are like most people, you work 5 days a week for about 40 hours a week. You will most likely have to schedule working your second job at night after you get off. While this narrows down possible job opportunities, there are still quite a few to choose from.

Food and Beverage Industry

Restaurant or Bar

One of the most typical jobs one can have as a second source of income is from working for a restaurant or bar, mostly as either a waiter/waitress or bartender. This is because most shifts start later in the day or in the evening time which works out well if your first job is like most nine to five's.

If you get a job as a waiter or waitress, most of your income will come from tips. This is because most people in these jobs aren't paid very well per hour, most of the time even below minimum wage. However, if you work hard and have good customer service skills you can expect to do well. The same goes for working as a bartender, once your customers get a few drinks in them they are going to be more likely to tip you more. The main drawback to this job is obvious - having to deal with drunk people all night long.

working a second job can be hard
working a second job can be hard

Pizza Delivery

One of the best second jobs to have is a pizza delivery driver. Most companies are understanding of your schedule because most delivery drivers work two jobs. One example being myself, I was able to work Friday and Saturday night from 7-11 pm, and a few hours on Sunday as well. I was usually able to squeeze in about 15 hours a week. Between my hourly pay and tips I was able to make enough money to make it through some tough financial times.

Working as a pizza delivery driver as a second job does have its challenges. Being away from your family can be depressing because you feel like you never see them. Being tired and working late can get old fast. While most people probably don't realize it, there is a lot of pressure on drivers to deliver quickly, between deadlines and pizzas being delivered late it can get frustrating. Sometimes you will be required to take two, three or even four deliveries at once if the store gets busy. By the time you get to the last delivery, it will be late and you will have to deal with unhappy customers. It can be extremely discouraging to do this job and not get tipped, which does happen sometimes. You may even feel like it's a waste of time because by the time you figure the amount of gas you have spent, and the amount of tips (or lack of) you got, you may not even be making any money at all!

While it can be a challenge, there arebenefits to having a pizza delivery job. The work can be enjoyable because you are mostly alone in your vehicle, doing your own thing, listening to music, etc. And you can make good money in tips if things go your way. Overall, if you have to get a second job to make it financially, pizza delivery is really one of your best options.

Newspaper Delivery Route

A second job that you can make good money with is by having a newspaper route. The main drawback with this job is that you have to work just about all night long. Depending on the paper you work for and the size of your route, most times it may take a few hours to complete. Another thing to consider is that you will not have a night off, actually on the weekends you will probably work longer especially on Sunday morning. So if you don't mind being up all night throwing papers out of your car windows, go for it because it actually can pay pretty well.

Mystery Shopping

Being a mystery shopper can be an exciting and rewarding second job. All that you need to get started is a little computer and Internet skills. It can be fun because you will get reimbursed for most of what you buy as long as you provide a little feedback to the company on their operations from an everyday customers point of view. Stores, restaurants and even hotels will pay you to know how they are doing. I did it because of the free fast food!

Online Jobs

There are lots of opportunities for people to work from home through online jobs. These jobs can range from writing to graphic design, even simply doing data entry. The cool part about these jobs is that you can do them from anywhere in the world as long as you have an Internet connection which makes it a perfect second job for someone who travels a lot.

What best describes your current employment situation?

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    • Laura Schneider profile image

      Laura Schneider 4 years ago from Minneapolis-St. Paul, Minnesota, USA

      Helpful advice! I didn't think of some of the up and down sides of some of these jobs! Thanks!