Back in the days of grants, working was something students only needed to do in order to earn a little extra. Today, with all the living costs and the cost of books and equipment and usually fees to pay as well (depending on where you’re from), it’s much more difficult to get by without a job. Working, however, doesn’t just impact your social life – it can also make it harder for you to learn. Fortunately, there are some other options and, depending on your skills, they could work out very well for you.

Tutoring

You wouldn’t be studying if you didn’t have a good education already and there are lots of ways you can turn that to your advantage. Whether you’re helping a school pupil to understand maths homework, assisting an international student to speak better English or providing music lessons to enthusiastic amateurs, you can get paid quite a bit for tutoring. The key is to be confident, to present yourself well and show empathy.

Creating art

If you have artistic or crafting skills, you may be able to create and sell work while you study. If you’re at art school, this is often recommended as a means of enhancing your education. Look out for local arts and crafts fairs where you can sell direct to the public, or sell your work through sites like Etsy or Folksy. Try to get commissions, which are generally more lucrative than simply hoping that people will like what you’ve already produced.

Busking

If you have a good singing voice or can play a musical instrument, look up the licensing rules for your local area and try a bit of busking. This gives you the chance to make money doing something you enjoy, and it can be even more fun if you do it as part of a group. It has even led to some people being ‘discovered’ and ending up with record deals. The key is not to overreach yourself and to try and give the public something a bit different.

Investing

The great thing about student loans is that they have a low rate of interest attached and, after setting aside the minimum you need to live, you can potentially do quite well out of investing the rest. Most stocks and shares won’t pay off well until after you graduate, when it’s less important, but more volatile assets like cryptocurrencies can generate quick rewards. Try this top10bitcoinrobots site to find the best robots to make trades for you while you’re in lectures.

Coding

If you have good programming skills, there is always work to be done as a coder. A good place to start is by writing some open source software so that you can show what you’re capable of. You can then pick up pieces of work on a freelance basis whenever it fits in with your schedule, or you can go it alone and try designing apps. Students keen to try out new things make a great initial sales group for launching an app.

Babysitting and pet sitting

Even when you’ve moved away from your parents’ home, there’s no reason why you can’t do babysitting, and it’s highly compatible with studying. People also need reliable individuals to look after their pets when they’re away, or simply to walk their dogs because age, disability or a busy lifestyle makes it difficult for them to do so themselves. Once you’ve collected a few good references, you’ll be surprised by how much money you can make in this way.

Renting out rooms

If you own the place where you stay, then you can consider renting out spare space or even renting your own room to holidaymakers when you’re away as a means of making a bit of extra cash. Some people do this with rented properties, but you’ll need to be careful about that as sub-letting is often prohibited by landlords. Some students based in Edinburgh make enough money by renting their rooms out during the city’s annual festival to cover rent for the rest of the year.

Upcycling

If you’ve got a keen eye for good quality furniture that’s been thrown away, you could potentially make quite a bit of money by upcycling – repairing and sometimes repurposing abandoned items which you can then use yourself or put up for sale. There are always new students who need cheap furniture so even just advertising around your campus can work, and you may also be invited to do repair jobs for a few extra quid.

Making money doesn’t need to take up all your time. If you’re creative and resourceful, you can live comfortably and still have the time you need to get the most out of your education.