More and more Singaporeans are exploring their options for additional sources of income outside of their full time jobs. While investment remains a lucrative avenue to make money passively, it can be incredibly tricky for beginners to navigate without adequate knowledge and experience.
Luckily, side hustles present themselves as a valid solution in face of an unpredictable global economy. Their ad-hoc and flexible nature also makes them a great way to pocket extra cash during your free time, with the freedom of managing your own schedule and basically, being your own boss.
Here, we compile 20 side hustle prospects for anybody to get that extra dough. Whether you’re looking to make money to tide over rough waters, welcome a bit more luxury into your life, or for a speed boost to financial independence, retire early (FIRE), you might just find the right stint here to narrow the distance between you and your goals.
Become a Tutor
Singapore is a hot market for tutoring. This is unsurprising given how competitive our top-rated education system is, which results in parents and students choosing to seek extra help for school subjects outside of the compact school curriculum.
This makes tutoring one of the most profitable job opportunities out there. Laden with potential, some even choose to convert this popular side gig into full-fledged career. In Singapore’s private tuition scene, Anthony Fok, a “super tutor”, single-handedly rakes in over $1 million each year.
Convinced? With relevant experience, you can choose between online tutoring, from tutoring companies such as Snapask, Agrader Learning Centre, The Learning Lab and more; and offline tutoring, from tuition centers scattered all across Singapore. Not only do you get to make an impact on the lives of students in Primary, Secondary and JC levels, you also get to enjoy the privilege of scheduling your classes according to your availability, especially if you pursue the route of being an online tutor.
Estimated Rate: $25 to $130 per hour, depending on the level and subject taught.
Become a Music or Art Teacher
If you have a flair for the arts, taking on the role of a music or art teacher can be immensely fulfilling, even if done on the side. With a genuine passion for the creative activity, whether it is playing the piano, violin, or painting, teaching can provide meaningful extra income without it feeling much like a chore or a bore.
To teach people privately, you can offer lessons on evenings, weekends, or other days you can free up. You can also fix up transparent and reasonable pricing structures with a bit of marketing work.
It is crucial to note that private teaching entails preparing your own learning materials and environment. Alternatively, explore virtual and in-person music teaching jobs on portals and music schools, finding one that fits with your schedule and convenience.
Estimated Rate: $25 per hour.
Become a Translator or Transcriber
Don’t put your bilingual, trilingual or multilingual skills to waste. Translating and transcribing sound bites are one of the most universally applicable jobs to make more money. The projects require translators or transcribers to listen to audio or video files, and produce them in the form of written documents, be it in the original language or another.
While most of us get by without hearing the mention of such services, they are an indispensable part of numerous industries. From translation of academic papers, processing critical documents, to detailing research interviews and making content accessible to everyone, being an online translator or transcriber is a significant role with boundless impact. Combining accuracy with competence and speed, providing online translation services can be a satisfying, risk-free and manageable way of making money conveniently and comfortably.
Estimated Rate: Up to $250 per hour, depending on platform.
Provide Online Courses
Have you accrued enough knowledge and expertise in your field? With the rise of people looking to upskill with online courses, selling educational content online has become a practical way of generating more income on the global scale.
The best part is that this mode of earning money online isn’t limited to professional skills only. Productive hobbies, personal development, the arts and fitness are also informative content that people are willing to introduce into their lifelong learning.
However, like any other lesson, online courses demand meticulous planning. Before starting, think and research about what a well-structured lesson entails, from delivery, engaging media to discussion forums and more. You may also want to gain an understanding of your target audience and their preferences. With enough preparation, you can make your course take flight, granting you a reliable source of passive income for years to come.
Estimated Rate: Depends. You can take this quiz to gauge how much you can potentially make with your online course.
Become a Virtual Assistant
Detailed-oriented and tech-savvy individuals can leverage their organizational and problem-solving skills by becoming virtual assistants (VA). Their job scope includes providing administrative support, from data entry, scheduling, researching to creating presentations, making bookings and more.
Essentially functioning as personal assistants, VAs can be employed on a short or long term basis, with the flexibility of working anytime, anywhere as long as there is a reliable internet connection. Highly scalable, VAs tend to acquire skills that are relevant in the full time job market, expanding career opportunities through a series of learning, networking and time management.
Estimated Rate: Up to $48 per hour.
Become an Affiliate Marketer
Affiliate marketing involves the promotion of a company’s products and services with the assistance of an individual, known as the affiliate marketer. In today’s age of social media, affiliate marketing is a viable and popular strategy for making passive income. Many social media users might better recognize affiliate marketers by the commonly used terminologies, content creators and influencers.
As a component of social media marketing, affiliate marketers receive a commission for each sale that goes through. Formats you want to engage your audience with are aplenty – from reviews, recommendations, to tutorials, live streams and more. These types of content typically incorporate a referral code or link and are done on social media platforms where a huge number of your following dwells.
While companies often actively approach affiliate marketers to advertise their commodities, affiliate marketers can also reach out to brands to propose collaborations. If you’re looking to do the latter, comb through affiliate marketplaces like ShareASale, Rakuten, ClickBank and PartnerStack for the products and services you deem suitable for your target audience. You might also want to find data to back up the effects you can bring to businesses, including how your particular niche aligns with their brands, in order to successfully monetize your platform.
Estimated Rate: S$47 per hour, on average.
Start Home-Based Food Businesses
Singapore is a culinary paradise, so it’s never a shock to learn that someone around you has a gift for cooking. If that person happens to be you, you can put some serious thought into selling your homemade food or bakes, and start running your own business.
Many of such businesses now operate on Instagram, but there’s no harm in going the extra mile with a website or multiple social media channels. Although home-based businesses are completely legal, it is vital to exercise responsibility by meeting food safety standards and complying with other regulations, such as not selling your food to other establishments or events.
Estimated Rate: Depends.
Become a Freelancer
There has been a spurt in the amount of freelance workers since the pandemic hit, and it seems the world is embracing the trend of hiring freelancers for tasks that could use some outside help. According to Exploding Topics, the global freelance platform market is expected to reach US$9.19 billion by 2027. Right now, about 47% of workers worldwide are freelancers.
Becoming a freelancer, be it in writing, graphic design, programming, or administrative tasks like accounting and bookkeeping, can be a dream job for many. It offers unparalleled flexibility by letting you manage your workload and handpick your projects. This independence and autonomy has led to much of the workforce choosing to make freelancing their full time job.
Curate an outstanding portfolio by writing, assisting in, or creating content for numerous publications and websites, in the form of press releases, blog posts, newsletters and more. Find work on specialized freelancing websites such as Upwork, Fiverr, Freelancer.com, or portals like LinkedIn, Jobscentral, and MyCareersFuture.
Estimated Rate: $33 per hour, on average.
Become a Personal Shopper
Perhaps shopping for others makes sense as a side hustle, especially if your hand is always hovering over that shopping itch you’re waiting to scratch. Help people shop for groceries, clothing, gifts, electronics and anything conceivable to provide a hassle-free and speedy shopping experience for them.
When you’re not Singapore-bound, you can also help them shop for items abroad. Homegrown startup ShopandBox offers this peer-to-peer shopping service to make shopping a global affair, regardless of your geographical location.
Estimated Rate: $20, on average.
Become a Babysitter
If you have experience in early childhood, parenting, or simply love interacting with children, offering babysitting services might just be the perfect way to earn side income for you.
Over a span of 3 to 5 hours, babysitters take care of children when their parents are not around – making sure their safety and personal needs are met. Responsibilities for babysitters include monitoring children closely, ensuring their environment is safe, feeding them at the right times, engaging them with play and assisting them with various routines, among others.
Unless arrangements have been made, babysitting services are typically ad-hoc, activated in situations wherein parents are away, like if they need a night out, are stuck at work, or have other commitments to tend to. Apply as a babysitter on Nannyz, NannySOS, Babysits or Peekaboo Nannies.
Estimated Rate: $25 per hour.
Become a Pet Sitter
Fur babies need attention too. If you have a soft spot for animals, consider becoming a pet sitter, helping pet owners who are traveling or can’t be there with their pets by giving the best animal care and companionship you can provide.
Between a singular visit or an overnight stay, feed pets and maintain their cleanliness, walk and play with them, administer medication and more as assigned to you by their owners. Pet sitters also play an important part in alleviating loneliness and anxiety in animals when their owners are away, and keep owners updated on the status of their pets regularly.
Other similar jobs include dog walking, pet daycare and boarding, and pet training services.
Estimated Rate: $20 to $50 per hour.
Take Paid Surveys
You’ve probably heard of this before and questioned its legitimacy, but participating in surveys can really pay you. Take a few minutes of your day to take online surveys to score coupons, credits or cash with little effort. It doesn’t take any technical skills – just your honest feedback, which you can give on the go.
Estimated Rate: $1 to $2 per survey, on average.
Become a Grab Driver
Having a part time commitment as a Grab driver, working approximately 3 hours a day, can have you take home spare cash of up to $600 on a good week. Pretty sweet deal, right? With how pervasive the ride hailing app has become, this prospect is entirely feasible for many, even for those who don’t own a car. You can rent from Grab at affordable rates with various add-ons, discounts and rebates.
Aspiring drivers can also look into GrabHitch. Besides earning up to $12 per pickup, GrabHitch drivers can enjoy new joiner incentives to make the most of their resources. Differing from the traditional ride hailing service, GrabHitch offers carpooling where commuters willingly share their ride, cutting costs in a sustainable and traffic-efficient manner.
Estimated Rate: $17 per hour.
Become a Professional Photographer
Capture special moments from portrait sessions, weddings, family events to media conferences, performances and more. As a professional photographer, you can be a firsthand witness to intimate and grand occasions while immortalizing memories with snapshots in time.
Photography requires major skills, so a good portfolio may be needed to establish your reputation and promote your services. It would be greatly beneficial if your expertise branches out into editing and videography as well. Set up your own website, hunt for photography opportunities that accommodate your schedule on Fiverr, Upwork, Behance and others to start earning.
Estimated Rate: Up to $300 per hour, depending on type and experience.
Become a Stock Photographer
Becoming a stock photographer comes with a lower barrier to entry as compared to a professional photographer. Requiring less specialized gear and skill level, stock photography usually encompasses capturing high quality images with commercial value for specific purposes.
With diverse demands spread across marketing, web design, publishing and more, stock photographers can choose to focus on areas within their comfort zone or capacity to maximize cost efficiency. It’s only finding the sweet spot between quality, quantity, a steady output and images that are profitable that’s a little bit tricky.
Estimated Rate: Up to $0.35 per image, per month.
Become a Food Delivery Partner
Apart from the flexible working hours, food delivery platforms offer food delivery partners the option to accept or decline orders based on their availability. As a partner, you can plan your working hours around your existing commitments, whether it is your main profession, school or other obligations. You can even make spontaneous decisions on whether or not to work that day. Promised yourself you would deliver, but suddenly feeling under the weather? Rest up, you can do it another day.
Earning extra money has never been this accessible and inclusive. Now, those who deliver food aren’t isolated to the singular choice of being a food delivery rider. Partners can make deliveries however they want, be it with a vehicle, bicycle, scooter, Personal Mobility Aid (PMA) or on foot. Just accept an order, pick it up at the restaurant, and deliver it to the customer’s location by driving, riding or walking. It’s as simple as that.
Estimated Price: $9 to $23 per hour.
Become a Parcel Delivery Partner
Did you know that more than 200,000 parcels are delivered in Singapore each day? This whopping figure, swayed by the global e Commerce boom, has naturally led to an increase in demand for courier or package delivery. In most cases, all you need is a vehicle that passes the platform’s requirements, a local driver’s license and a smartphone.
Check out listings for delivery partners on job portals, where e Commerce sites post their available positions. Otherwise, sign up directly with delivery companies such as Amazon Flex, Lalamove and FedEx to work on your own terms, and receive and fulfill the orders you signed up for.
Estimated Rate: $10 per hour, on average.
Publish an Ebook
If being a freelance writer isn’t your thing, publishing an ebook may offer you the experience of becoming a published author without cramping your style. As a creative pursuit that can help you earn money online, publishing an ebook can be incredibly rewarding, from having the freedom to showcase your creativity, getting recognized for your hard work through readership and reviews, in addition to monetary benefits.
It does take time to complete a whole manuscript, but the satisfaction you get from finishing it is unbeatable – especially as your revenue starts streaming in. This is a side hustle with a lasting impact, so long as you find ways to stand out from the crowd and keep up with efforts to produce quality work and maintain visibility.
Estimated Rate: Up to $52 per hour, on average.
Sell Your Craftwork
Whether it is handmade jewelry, artisanal candles, embroidered bags, customized keychains or delicate pottery, developing your knack for craftwork into a side hustle isn’t a far-fetched notion with Singapore’s obsession with curated marketplaces and conventions.
Besides setting up physical booths, you can sell your craft items on your own website, social media platforms and online marketplaces like Etsy.
Estimated Rate: Depends.
Sell Your Old Items
With sustainability being an increasingly prioritized cause, more and more people are seeing the appeal in purchasing second hand, vintage or in general, pre-owned goods from clothing, furniture, appliances to jewelry, decor and more.
So if you’ve been waiting to Marie Kondo your home, this might be the chance to free up some time, to free up some space. As they say, one man’s trash is another man’s treasure, so you would never know the profit that could arise from something you barely use anymore.
Estimated Rate: Depends.
With prices on the rise and a fluctuating economy, an additional source of income certainly alleviates some stress in the face of global uncertainties.
Although not a necessity, side hustles are growingly common in Singapore to achieve financial stability, among other methods such as budgeting, investing and finding better career opportunities. Adopting diversified income streams, no matter how small, are a big step towards financial freedom and confidence.
We hope that this list of side hustle ideas offers you choices that align with your interests and skills. Make extra money, and experience more comfort, stability and peace of mind with a healthy balance between your primary responsibilities and work commitments today.