With less than 100 days now to go before Christmas I am getting lots of messages asking what to do to make money before then. Although I always recommend starting early (like January early lol) I am happy to provide some ideas to help you make money in time for buying presents etc. Here are 35 tried and tested (mostly) free ways to make money for Christmas.
Obviously it depends on how much you need really, and how much time you have free. The following ideas are those most likely help you to earn around £50 – £250+ within the next 4-6 weeks!
Join Survey Sites
Although some sites can take quite a bit of time to reach the claim level there are some that I would call fast cash options. With Panelbase, Swagbucks, Gifthulk and Mintvine for example you can usually make a claim within a few days to a week. You need to be prepared to get screened out of surveys as this is part of the process. Expect to be able to complete around 1 in 4 or 5 on average.
Sell Unwanted Goods
If you haven’t done a clear out for a while it is worth spending a few hours going through wardrobes and cupboards. Obviously any festive themed goods sell well at this time of year, but also good quality used clothing, toys, books, DVD’s, jewellery etc. You can sell items online via Ebay, Facebook, Preloved, Ebid, Gumtree etc as well as Car Boot Sales (yes there are plenty still going in winter – Check Car Boot Junction for UK ones). If you prefer to stay warm and dry you could also try Shpock which is a car boot sale app, or Online Car Booty which is an online car boot website.
You could even host a ‘de-clutter party’ where you invite friends to bring so many items to sell or swap to your house. These can be great fun and a chance to get your hands on something you have been admiring 😉
Got books, CD’s, DVD’s or Games to sell? Try Ziffit, WeBuyBooks, Music Magpie or Zapper. Music Magpie and Zapper also buy mobile phones and electronics.
You do need a bit of capital for this. Usually around £100 to get started. You should also be pretty careful with the instructions as if you do it wrong you can loose money. There are a few Matched Betting companies around who basically do all the calculations for you and provide information on how to place the bets etc. Profit accumulator, which does charge a subscription, Freebets4all which is free, and a great blog to follow is MatchedBettingBlog.
Profits are guaranteed IF you follow the instructions fully. This is in my opinion not at all straight forward to anyone not familiar with online betting accounts and terminology.
Quite a lot of companies pay for mystery shoppers to review their shopping experience from a customer perspective. This can provide a nice income though you often need to pay in advance to buy something. Be prepared to write detailed reports of your experience and travel around a lot!
The only company I have personally used for Mystery Shopping is GBW however there are various companies around. Some seem to have better reviews than others, and some seem to specialise in particular type of shopping. It is worth doing a bit of research or trying a few to see which suit your needs best.
The following are also genuine mystery shopping companies: Market Force, Tern, Grass Roots, TNS and Its Incognito
What Users Do and User Testing both offer the opportunity to get paid to test out websites and provide reviews. Many companies worldwide want to improve their understanding of peoples digital experiences on their websites. Getting paid to test websites therefore helps these companies to refine their websites and make them more user friendly etc.
Use Cashback Options
At this time of major shopping sprees make sure you make the most of any cashback options you have available. Top Cash Back, Quidco, Swagbucks, and Checkout Smart all offer free cashback on purchases. Some credit card and debit card companies also offer cashback for paying with their card too. If using a credit card do be careful to avoid unwanted debt and pay off the balance as soon as possible or this is a false economy.
Some Cashback Credit Cards you might like to check out are Asda Cash,
Bank Account Swapping
There are several banks offering cash incentives to swap your account to them. Currently offering £100 is First Direct and £150 is Co-Op Bank. M&S are also offering a £220 gift card to switch to them. These offers can change a lot so do check the details before applying!
As retailers prepare for a Christmas rush many will offer a short term Christmas contract. It can be worth just asking in your local shops if they need help over the holidays. You can also check for Christmas jobs on Total Jobs
Similar to seasonal employment but can involve working in various locations. Employment agencies are always looking for reliable staff during holiday periods and they can pay well too. Its usually best to just phone or walk in to a local employment agency. In the UK check on Yell for employment agencies.
Shop and Scan
Have you heard about people getting paid to scan their grocery shopping? Its just another way for companies to get market research information which is very valuable to them. I’ve done this for years with Shop and Scan NI and have many friends in England using Shop and Scan. Both options pay in vouchers when you regularly scan your grocery shopping.
Depending on where you live and your current health you may be able to take part in paid Medical Research. Drug companies are always looking for participants for their research trials. These can be very well paid with some rates of over £1000 per study. If you would like to register your interest in taking part you can do so with Covance Clinical Trials if you live in the UK or Northern Ireland Clinical Trials in if in NI.
Doing Odd Jobs
You could offer your services to neighbours and friends or post on a local bulletin board for this. If you prefer online methods of advertising add a post in your local facebook group, on twitter or check out what might be available on Task Rabbit.
At this time of year there are always people who would appreciate help with doing their shopping. You could advertise your services locally via a bulletin board for example, or apply to be a personal shopper for a particular company. Check out these Personal Shopping Jobs in the UK.
Pet sitting or Walking is another job that sees increased demand at this time of year. With owners possibly spending more time out of the home they can be very grateful to have a trusted person to look after their pets. If you would like to register as a dog sitter/walker Dog Buddy is a good place to start. Purrfer Cats? Have a look at Home Loving Cats. Another great site to have a look at for this kind of work is Holidog.
Mobile Expression is a handy little number if you really don’t want to do very much to earn a little extra cash. Its a simple app that you download onto you mobile phone which gathers information about how you use your phone. It does not gather personal information like phone numbers etc. The information collected is related to when we call or text or how we access the internet etc. Again this is to provide market research information to various companies. The app can be removed at any time or can be kept installed for continuous earning. You will be able to claim Amazon Vouchers for your participation.
Receipt Hog is a free mobile app that turns your everyday shopping receipts into cash. You simply download the app, take photos of your receipts and earn coins for doing so. Once you have added enough receipts you can redeem your coins for Paypal cash or Amazon gift vouchers. You will need to add quite a lot of receipts to cash out before Christmas but it is doable.
Sell Gift Cards
Do you have any old gift cards you received last year for Christmas or for your birthday etc? If you haven’t used them you might like to sell them on Zeek for cash instead. You will get less than the value of spending the gift card but it is handy if you aren’t likely to use it.
Recycle Ink Cartridges
This is a great option to look at if you do quite a bit of printing (as I do). Anything that helps with recycling and has an added bonus of a little extra cash is certainly top of my list. There are a few options for this, but the one I use is The Recycling Factory. Some other companies give you loyalty points, such as Tesco I believe, and some do charity donations too. Any of these options are certainly better than throwing in the bin aren’t they?
Yes you can get paid to mind other peoples houses now too. Isn’t this a great idea? It even helps to lower insurance costs I believe. It would be pretty interesting travelling around different areas to mind peoples houses too! I’m thinking I could do it anywhere hot and sunny over the winter 🙂 lol. If this sounds like something you would enjoy have a read up over on the Home Sitters Website
Use your Current Skills
I debated about putting this one in the possible earning section as it does depend on you being able to make sales. I have dabbled with the idea of providing some paid services on Fiverr myself, but I can’t really decide what services I would like to offer. Mainly the technology based skills of SEO and website building etc seem the most popular on here, but also craft sales and the ever amusing different messages videos or photos are worth checking out too. A lot of people report starting a very successful business through using Fiverr so it is a good option if you have marketable skills.
There are literally hundreds of coupons available to use on your shopping. It does take a little bit of organising and planning to become a skilled couponer, but you can save a huge amount of money by doing it. I’m one of these people who forget to use them, or remember just as they have expired. I want to improve my couponing skills though so I am starting with Super Savvy Me Coupons and Extreme Couponing for this one.
Use Checkout Smart
Checkout Smart is pretty similar to the couponing option but it uses an app so no printing etc required. In my experience most deals are for the big supermarkets like Asda, Tesco and Morrisons. They also include some of the smaller stores like Lidl, Spar and Co-op etc too though so worth checking regardless of where you do your shopping.
I love Flubit! Its a bit of a new discovery for me, but basically before buying anything on Amazon check the price on Flubit. They pretty much guarantee to beat the price – can’t be bad to that can you? I’ve checked a few prices through them and some great savings were available. When you are doing your Christmas Shopping definitely try to remember this one!
Amazon are quite famous now for their Black Friday Sale. There are loads of other sales as well though. Did you know there are daily deals on Amazon? There are also Amazon Vouchers to get automatic discounts. There are Fashion Sales, Electronics Sales, Amazon Warehouse Deals and here is another Discount Finder just for Amazon!
Collection Only on Ebay
Another great way to get low prices items can be to check the collection only items. These can often have fewer bids than items that can be posted. This Ebay Local Deals tool is great to find those things close enough for you to collect. If you also use this in conjunction with ipostparcels you can find some great deals that would normally be out of reach as well.
Check your Bank Account
Many people have direct debits or regular payments going out for services or subscriptions they really don’t use, or forgot signing up to. Take a little time to check through your bank account to see what you are paying. If you can do without it or no longer use it, cancel it!
If you have also been with the same supplier for a particular service for a while it is worth checking if you could save money by swapping. Compare the Market make it very easy now to change suppliers, as do Uswitch. Personally I like to check the prices with different suppliers and then ring my current company to see if they can offer a better deal. A few times I’ve managed to negotiate a better saving with my current company than was being offered by the others! Remember If you don’t ask, you don’t get!
Use Shops Own Brand Groceries
Shops own brand items are no longer the really unhealthy and tasteless products they once were. In fact I would go so far as say many of them are higher quality now than some of the branded options that are available. Certainly Asda and Co-Op own brand items get really great reviews. The prices are usually (but not always) lower for shops own brand items and you can save a pretty penny just by changing to these. Do watch out for special offers on the branded goods too though 😉
These can be a bit hit and miss, and you might win nothing. Some friends of mine though do all their Christmas ‘shopping’ via competitions and it is a great way to save money. Make sure you know how to find the genuine competitions though and don’t waste time on fake ones!
Join a Free MLM
There are quite a few free to join MLM’s around including FM Cosmetics, Nu Skin and Natural Elements. I suggest free MLM’s for this because often it can take time to build up a customer base. Paid MLM’s are also an option, but make sure you have a good solid plan in place to get sales happening quickly if you choose any of those.
There are a few different ways to take part in free bingo actually. The first way is by getting to know what time free bingo games are available on the regular paid gambling sites. For example on Jackpot Joy there are several times throughout the day when free bingo games are offered. I have made money from free games on Jackpot Joy on numerous occasions. There are many other sites that run free games too. I will be providing more info on those once I have finished my research into that.
The second way is to use a site called Bingo Port. This site provides you with free credits to play on the paid sites which you can use to win cash. How Bingoport works is quite simple really. You play free bingo games with them, earn the credits from doing that, and claim vouchers.
Christmas Craft Fairs and Markets
If you are good at making things you might like to try selling goods at Craft Fairs or Markets. Need some inspiration? There are thousands of ideas on the Pinterest Christmas Craft Fair Board.
You might also like to check for a Christmas Market near you or search for Christmas Craft Fairs . Details of UK based Fairs and Markets are also on The List.
Buy and Sell
Fancy dipping your toe in the retailing pond? You can of course start small with a job lot of goods bought on Ebay or Gumtree etc. In fact now is a good time to nab some great deals on job lots of goods as a lot of car boot people decide it is too cold for them at this time of year and will sell off job lots of all sorts of things. Check for those collection only listings on Ebay and you never know what you might find 😉
Check for Unclaimed Money
No I’m not talking about PPI lol – don’t you hate those phone calls? Yes ok there are people who haven’t claimed PPI refunds, but there are many other pots of unclaimed cash lying around all over the place.
According to Unclaimed Assets Uk and The Financial Times it all amounts to over 77 BILLION pounds. Sorry I have to say that again, £77,000,000,000 of our money is sitting in various accounts just waiting to see if anyone claims it. Basically if you have ever forgotten to update your details on old accounts, or just not asked if you have a refund due when changing utility suppliers you could have money sitting in dormant accounts. Have you ever paid into a pension? Or bought shares? How about old life insurance policies? Premium Bonds? Loyalty Cards?
If you have ever bought a lottery ticket there are £300 million in unclaimed National Lottery winnings!
Even if you are 100% sure about all of the above it is still possible to have an unknown windfall. Its worth 5 or 10 mins just to check for unclaimed money isn’t it?
Yes you can win money for free! There are quite a few of these sites actually, that fund the winnings through advertising revenue. The ones I know about are: Selfie Lottery, Lucky Phone, Free Postcode Lottery, Free Emoji Lottery, Date of Birth Lottery, Search Lotto. Some of these offer winnings of over £500. Thats not to be sniffed at 😉
Any other ideas that you would suggest to add to the list?
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