How to Make & Save Money this Winter Break
Wondering how to make money this winter break? There are plenty of ways to make a little extra cash, but you may have to get creative. Once you make it, though, don’t forget to save it, too!
With academics out of the way for the month, take advantage of the extra time to make money for the next semester. If you worked a retail job in the summer, try to revive that job for the holiday season. Most stores are desperate for employees during this time of year, so your manager would probably be very happy to take you back. If you haven’t worked retail before, still keep an eye out for advertisements.
One perk that will set you apart from others is that you can offer full-time services for the month, whereas other people may have to balance this job with another one. If you live close to your college, where you have a part-time job during the semester, you can also offer more availability to your manager there for the month you are home.
But if you don’t have an “official” job like the ones above, here are some creative ways to earn extra cash…
- Find, or Create, Your Own Holiday Job — Keep an eye out for advertisements of places that need a “Santa’s helper,” A.K.A get paid to dress up as an elf and hand out candy canes to little kids. If not this, then offer your services as a personal shopper for people who don’t have time to finish their holiday shopping. Or, put your crafting services to good use. Make your own presents, and sell them at local craft fairs or customize them for people who ask. You can even make your own online shop. Ask for a bonus and offer to wrap the presents, too.
- Clean Out Your Closet — If you are anticipating shopping for new clothes, or receiving new ones in the near future, then take some time to purge the old sweaters you haven’t worn in years. Instead of just throwing them away, however, if they are in good condition, sell them to a consignment shop. Not only do you earn money back, but now you can feel good knowing that other people can enjoy your clothes at a lower cost!
- Sell Your Textbooks — Now that the semester is over, get rid of those old books you know you probably won’t need again (think: anything you had to get for those dang gen. ed. classes) by reselling them to other students. You can either post directly through your college’s advertising means, advertise on social media, or go through a company like Amazon or AbeBooks. If you are bored, take the time to go through your books at home too. You may find old forgotten high school books that you no longer need in there.
- Sit Around — Making money while sitting, what could be better?! Offer your services as a babysitter, pet sitter, house sitter…whatever you are most comfortable with. During the holiday season, many people will be attending seasonal parties and/or going to visit relatives, so there may be more opportunities than normal in your area. You can also offer your wrapping paper services as an add-on here.
- Be Random — Often, doing odd-jobs around your area can be the easiest, most fun and most rewarding way to make money! After the holidays offer to take down neighbors’ lights, remove their Christmas tree, anything of the sort. Also, you can always offer to walk dogs. Once it gets cold out, this commodity becomes hotter and hotter.
Making money is great…until you spend it all. While you want to have fun and see old friends this break, you can do so on a budget.
- Carpool — The first way to do this is when you travel home from school. If you don’t have a car of your own, try to hitch a ride with someone who does. You can split the cost of gas money, which makes it cheaper on both of you. If you live far from home to the point that you sometimes fly, still consider finding a driving buddy because with a friend, the drive seems 10x less miserable.
- Search for Scholarships — Take advantage of the extra time on your hands to look for scholarships. There are constantly more emerging online each day–in regards to all sorts of random things. Apply to some to make your next semester a little less of a penny-pincher.
- Use your Student Discounts — Whenever you leave the house, make sure you have your student ID with you. Lots of places offer student discounts, but that doesn’t mean they advertise them. It doesn’t hurt to ask wherever you go because it could lead to some great savings!
- Be a Home Cooker — While it is fun to go out to eat, try to limit the urge. If you want to eat with friends, consider organizing a potluck or just cooking together. This will actually prolong the activity, and it will save all of you a little cash.