23 Highest Paying Side Hustles UK

When you’re undertaking a side hustle alongside your job, you want to make sure that it’s one of the highest paying side hustles. After all, you need to use your limited spare time wisely. The amount of money that you can make from side hustles in the UK varies wildly depending on what you’re doing, and how much time you’re spending doing it.

Content creation (think Instagram, Tiktok, blogging and YouTube) could bring in upwards of £10,000 on a good month for an established channel. But, an established channel can take many years to build. Alternatively, you might bring in £1,000 extra a month freelancing using skills like writing, editing, or design.

When you’re looking for a new side hustle idea, you want to make sure it’s worth your while. You might want to make it scalable, or even something that you could outsource over time. It could even become your full time job one day. So why not pursue one of the most profitable side hustle ideas to get the most money for your time?

What side hustle makes the most money?

According to our research, the side hustle that makes the most money is content creation. The reason for that? Under the umbrella of ‘content creation’ there are multiple income streams that can be tapped into. For example, brand partnerships, display ads, affiliate marketing, and digital products.

Some of the above income streams could also be considered to be passive income streams. That means that you don’t have to put in all the hours under the sun to make money, and you could even be making money ‘passively’ while you sleep.

How can you make £1,000 per month?

There are lots of ways to make an extra £1,000 per month, and we dive into some ideas later in this post. To start earning an extra £1,000 fast, you might wish to consider side hustles which you can set up relatively quickly.

You might consider a side hustle idea that leverages your existing skills or network to get things off the ground at speed. That might look like freelancing or tutoring, for example.

What is the highest paying side hustle in the UK?

According to our research, the highest paying side hustles are freelancing, content creation, and tutoring. But, the amount you can earn from your side hustle is all relative. Your earnings can heavily depend on how much time you dedicate each month, and whether you can create an passive income streams through your side hustle.

That said, we have a whole list here to share with you, of 23 proven side hustles that are high paying and lucrative. Let’s get into it!

1. Content creation

💸 £1,500+ average monthly earnings

Content creation is a popular, well paid side hustle, and you can see why. Whether you decide to focus on social media, YouTube videos, blogging or podcasts, there is serious money to be made. The average monthly earnings for a content creator is £1,500, but many earn much more than this if they have a large audience.

Content creation has relatively cheap start up costs, and low barrier to entry. It’s an attractive side hustle. The downside? It can often take a few years of work until you are able to monetise this side hustle.

So how do content creators earn money? Many earn money through brand partnerships, display ads, and affiliate marketing. Content creators will often have several streams of income. They may also offer digital products or courses to increase their income. Interested to learn more about making money on Instagram? I have an exclusive 20% off discount code for the Income on IG course by Francesca at The Money Fox (who organically grew her page to over 70k followers). Use code LAURA20 to get the discount!

A newer type of content creation that doesn’t require your own audience, is User Generated Content (UGC). UGC is when a brand will pay you to create a video for them, and will place the video on their own channel. They might use it for ads and sponsored posts and the video will usually promote their product or service.

So how can you get started as a content creator? Pick a niche based on your interests, decide what media format to go for, and then make your first piece of content! You’ll find that your content will improve over time, and often the hardest part is just putting yourself out there.

2. Digital products

💸 £0 – £4,000+ average monthly earnings

What’s a digital product I hear you ask? A digital product is anything that you can sell online. It could be a workout plan, a baby sleep course, an eBook, a digital planner. The sky’s the limit. A digital product is something that you would usually create once, and sell multiple times. Check out Canva for free and affordable templates.

Digital products are often hailed as a form of ‘passive income.’ Meaning that once the initial work is complete, you do not have to keep creating the same item over and over again. However, there is often work involved in updating the product, and selling the product.

If you want to sell digital products, it usually helps if you have an existing audience to sell to (for example, if you’re already a content creator). You’ll often see claims from influencers saying “I made $10k this week selling digital products!” But that said, you can also sell digital products using ads on social media, without a big audience following. The amount you can make from digital products is extremely variable.

Want to check out our signature digital product here at Thrifty Londoner? It’s our Ultimate Money Matrix budgeting dashboard.

3. Freelancing

💸 £130-2,000 average monthly earnings

Freelancing can be an extremely lucrative side hustle, as it often involves selling skills that you already have. For example, you might freelance as a writer, an editor, or a graphic designer.

A lot of the time, people will hire freelancers because they either don’t have the time to complete a task themselves, OR because they don’t have the skills required to complete the task. One person in our Thrifty Londoner audience is an accountant, and freelances doing bookkeeping and taxes earning on average £1,500-2,000 per month. Another is a freelance subtitle translator earning £130-250 per month.

Freelancing is a great side hustle if you can leverage skills you already use in your day job, however do check your employment contracts to make sure that you are not in breach. Some employers will specify that you cannot undertake similar work, or work of a competitive nature. If in doubt, ask HR.

You can get started with freelance work by connecting with your network, finding freelance jobs on LinkedIn, or using sites such as Fiverr or PeoplePerHour to get started.

4. Tutoring

💸 £1,200 average monthly earnings (depending on hours worked)

If you’re already a teacher, then tutoring is a no-brainer side hustle. Depending on the level of tutoring, you could earn on average £35+ per session with a student. Tutors in the Thrifty Londoner community are earning £35-50 per hour.

To get started with tutoring, decide what you are going to offer, and to what age group. This is true whether you’re a teacher who currently teaches high school kids, or if you’re a music maestro and you want to start tutoring adults in guitar or piano.

Your local community is usually the best place to start to secure your first clients. Reach out to your network, use flyers or business cards (Vistaprint is an affordable place for printing), create a Facebook group and advertise to local community groups.

If you’re not having much luck with your local community, you could also try websites like Tutorful to register your services.

5. Dog walking

💸 £540 average monthly earnings (based on walking 3 dogs, 3 times a week)

Dogs are becoming more and more popular, and the need for dog walkers is at an all time high. You can expect to charge around £10-20 per dog (dependant on requirements), for one walk per day. You can of course walk multiple dogs in a day, and go on several walks per week. There’s also the benefit of exercise, time outside, and of course getting to spend some time with some seriously cute dogs.

Your local community should be your target audience for your dog walks. Ideally, you want to be able to pick up dogs from within walking distance from your house (unless you intend to get a large car or van to travel with the dogs).

To find your customers, you can use flyers and business cards. Try posting business cards through letter boxes, or pinning flyers in local cafes, supermarkets or small businesses that accept flyers. A Facebook group or website is also a great idea, and your best way to get more clients? Word of mouth. Ask your clients to tell their friends!

6. Matched betting

💸 £300- 1,000 average monthly earnings

*Disclaimer- matched betting is not a good idea if you have previously had a gambling addiction, or if you are prone to addiction. Give this one a miss and skip ahead to the next idea.

Matched betting works on the basis that you bet on both outcomes of a sports match. You are not betting in the traditional sense, because you bet both ways. It’s a profitable side hustle idea, that is also tax free, and it’s possible to earn quite a lot of money in a short space of time.

Thankfully, you don’t need to know lots about sports or betting to have success with matched betting. You can use a service like Outplayed. They offer a free trial which gives you all the information that you need to succeed with matched betting, including step by step videos to show you the exact process of how it all works.

I thought it sounded too good to be true- but I made over £300 when I tried it out for a few months. When I polled my Instagram audience about matched betting, one person said that they make £300 per month, another said £500 per month, and others up to £1,000 per month!

Outplayed offer a free trial where you can test the waters and earn a guaranteed £250 (if you don’t, they make up the difference!). This is a great chance to learn the ropes, and quickly make some extra money!

Read more about my experience of matched betting here. 

7. Renting

💸 £50 – £700 average monthly earnings

Renting can be a very lucrative form of passive income. Whether that’s renting out a room in your home, your garage, parking space, or even clothes and accessories.

The rent a room scheme is a tax efficient way to grow passive income- but, it of course depends on owning your own home, and having enough space to rent out a room. If you want to rent out a parking space or garage (very lucrative in London!) you can use apps like JustPark and YourParkingSpace.

For clothes and accessories, you can rent using platforms like By Rotation and Hurr. Depending on the type of clothes that you already own, and how much you already own and can list on the site, you could earn upwards of £3k per year! By Rotation will often spotlight certain items of clothing on their Instagram page, so you can see for yourself what is popular on the site.

8. Pet sitting

💸 £180 (based on £12 daily rate, and cat sitting 3 cats for 5 days per month per cat)

Pet sitting usually applies to cats, but you could also end up pet sitting smaller animals like hamsters, rabbits or even reptiles! The amount you earn depends on how many pets are on your books. You might find that at peak times like Christmas, you may be pet sitting 5 different pets at once.

The rate you’ll get for pet sitting can vary depending on the area you live in, and the amount of competitor services in the area. If you can include extras such as watering the plants, or opening and closing the curtains, this can make you stand out among your competitors. The average daily rate for one cat feed per day is £8-15. A member of the Thrifty Londoner community earns an average of £70 per month from cat sitting.

You can list your services on platforms like Pawshake, but your best bet for pet sitting is your local community. If they’re in walking distance? Even better! Use flyers, business cards, Facebook pages and even your own website to advertise to your local pet owners.

9. Alternative therapies

💸 £800 average monthly earnings (based on 4 sessions per week)

Alternative therapies could be anything from reiki, to reflexology, massage and even EFT. You’ll have to undertake a qualification to practice these alternative therapies (a reiki qualification can be completed in a weekend, for example), but once you’re qualified, you’re good to go!

For most alternative therapies, you’ll need to hold sessions in person. So ideally you’ll need a space in your own home to receive clients, or alternatively rent a designated space locally. Be sure to check any insurance policies you may need, or contracts your clients will need to sign so that you’ve covered in any eventuality. On average, a reiki session in the UK costs £50, so if you do several sessions a week, this is a lucrative side hustle.

Like many of the service-based businesses included in this list, your best chance is finding clients in your local community. Whether that’s advertising in your local paper, or even partnering with complimentary businesses. Is there a acupuncturist who you could connect with and share clients? Think outside the box and put yourself out there to get clients referred to you.

👀 If you want a ready-made spreadsheet to track your side hustle income and expenses, use this FREE one! You’ll also receive specialist emails around picking your side hustle, must have side hustle tools, and how to accelerate your side hustle earnings! 👇

10. Personal trainer

💸 £800 average monthly earnings

If you have an interest in fitness, you may wish to become a personal trainer on the side of your day job. A personal trainer can typically charge £35-75 an hour. You’ll need to become qualified as a personal trainer (you need a Level 2 certificate in Gym Instructing and a Level 3 diploma in Personal Training) before you get started, but once that’s complete, you have the qualification forever!

Alternatively, if you have an online audience (or are open to building one), you could create training plans remotely for anyone who wants to achieve some specific fitness goals.

And for other fitness related side hustles? You could try being a Pilates or Yoga teacher, again, you’ll need a qualification, but this can be lucrative. A yoga teacher in the Thrifty Londoner community currently earns £800 per month as a side hustle.

11. Beautician

💸 £800+ average monthly earnings

If you can receive clients at home for beauty treatments being a beautician can be an excellent side hustle. If not, you may need to rent out a designated space. It’s still a worthwhile side hustle, but you will have to off-set that extra cost.

When it comes to beauty, you could specialise in a certain area – gel nails, eyebrow tinting, eyelash extensions. Alternatively, you could offer several different treatments if you are already working as a beautician by day, and have the relevant qualifications. A nail technician could charge between £25-100 per manicure depending on the work involved.

You could earn around £800 per month as a beautician, depending on the treatments that you offer, the number of customers and any costs that you incur as a business.

12. Photographer

💸 £1,300+ average monthly earnings

Photography is an excellent option for anyone who is great behind the camera. If you specialise in a certain area such as wedding photography or maternity and newborn photography, all the better! It’s easier to make a name for yourself if you specialise in a niche.

Wedding photographers will cost on average around £1,300 (including delivery of photos and any editing). But many charge much more than this (mine was more like £2,500). So as you can see, it’s very much a profitable side hustle, and possibly one of the highest paying side hustles in the UK. If you photograph just 12 weddings a year, that’s £15,600 in additional gross income, based on the UK average.

To showcase your skills, you’ll need some great social media pages and testimonials from clients. You’ll soon be known as the go-to photographer in your area.

13. Uber driver

💸 £630 average monthly earnings (based on driving for 10 hours per week)

An Uber driver is a great side hustle for anyone who owns their own car, and lives in a busy city. You can set your hours to suit you, and you’ll never be short of work at the weekend. The more hours you work, the more money you can make! UK Uber drivers earn an estimated average of £7.88 per ride. Based on two rides per hour, that’s an hourly rate of £15.76

To become a driver, you’ll have to get a private hire license from a council that Uber is licensed by, upload your documents, register your vehicle, and complete the Uber EduMe course. Once that’s all complete, you can book an appointment at your local Greenlight Hub to activate your Uber Driver account.

This side hustle requires no outreach, all bookings are taken in-app. You’ll need to make an effort to accrue five star reviews, so be sure to ask your passengers to rate your service.

14. Bespoke cakes

💸 £550-750 average monthly earnings (based on producing one wedding cake per month)

Wedding cakes and birthday cakes are items that people will spend a lot of money on! So if you love baking, why not set up your own bespoke cake business? Your cakes will need to look good and taste even better to make sure that people keep coming back for more! With wedding cakes coming in at between £550-750, it could be a great side hustle.

You’ll probably want to get a food hygiene certificate before you start selling your cakes. And be sure to create contracts when needed, so that you cover yourself in every eventuality. You may also wish to take out insurance.

To get your business up and running, create social media pages to show the process of making the cakes, and to showcase the beautiful finished products to your audience. If you decide to specialise in wedding cakes, be sure to become involved in the wedding planning scene in your town, and attend wedding shows as a supplier.

15. Delivery driver

💸 £718 average monthly earnings (based on £17.97 per hour, working 10 hours per week)

Did you know that you can be a flexible self employed delivery driver for companies like Hermes? You can become a self employed (SE+) courier and set your own schedule. As a self-employed plus (SE+) driver you can also get access to union support (GMB), paid holiday and guaranteed minimum wage. 

You can also be a delivery driver for companies like Deliveroo and Uber Eats, as well as local takeaways and food outlets. The average self employed delivery driver in the UK will earn around £17.97 per hour.

16. Wholesaler

💸 sky’s the limit!

Have you ever considered being a wholesaler? Being a wholesaler usually involves buying products in bulk, and then selling them on at a profit. Finding a reputable supplier is the hardest part of this side hustle, and it very much depends on what product you’d like to sell. You’ll also need to set up your own ecommerce website and social media pages. This side hustle is for those who want a serious business that could eventually be a full time operation. Great for those already versed in a particular product area and ecommerce.

‘Dropshipping’ is a popular way to wholesale, and many people primarily do this for Amazon through a scheme called Fulfilled By Amazon (FBA). It works on the basis that when a customer purchases a product from you, you send the order to a third party company, who then ships the item to the customer.

The average annual earnings for Amazon FBA in the UK, is extremely variable dependent on the experience and age of the business, and the type of product sold. Amazon also charges high fees and storage costs.

17. Virtual assistant

💸 £1,200 average monthly earnings (based on working 10 hours per week, at £30 per hour)

A virtual assistant is hired by digital businesses to help them carry out work online. You may be hired by a small business or an individual to help with admin tasks and the day to day running of their business.

For example, you may manage their social media, create Instagram graphics, answer customer service emails, and a whole host of other tasks depending on the business requirements. An average, you can expect to earn around £30 per hour as a virtual assistant in the UK. This is definitely another contender for one of the highest paying side hustles in the UK, depending on hours worked.

As a virtual assistant you could train and specialise in tasks such as Facebook Ads, to stand out among your competition, and allow you to earn a higher rate as a VA.

18. Sales copywriting

💸 £1,000 average monthly earnings (based on producing one mid-level sales page per month)

Sales copywriting is a particular skill which is in high demand. ‘Sales pages’ are often used by coaches and business owners to ‘convert’ their audience into paying customers. There is often specific psychology at play that sales copywriters leverage to to convince people to buy. Pretty crazy, right?

As you can imagine, good sales copywriters are worth their weight in gold to these coaches and business owners, as the copy coverts into sales. Often an investment in a good sales copywriter will come back tenfold (or much more!) in the sales that they generate for the business owner. A sales page can cost between £500-3,000 (or more!) depending on the writer and the client.

So how can you get started? To be a great sales copywriter, you may need to do a course to hone your skills. Then, it’s a matter of gathering testimonials from your clients that demonstrate your ability to covert sales.

You could get started on the likes of websites such as Fiverr or PeoplePerHour to find your first jobs.

19. Celebrant

💸 £650 average monthly earnings (based on conducting one ceremony per month)

A celebrant is someone who usually conducts a humanist ceremony for a wedding, funeral, or naming ceremonies. You may also be hired for vow renewal and other important life milestones. Hiring a celebrant will usually cost around £650 per ceremony in the UK.

You’ll need to become qualified as a celebrant before you conduct the ceremonies, but this is relatively straightforward. You will need a level 3 Certificate and Diploma in Celebrancy, and normally you’ll have to shadow another celebrant and observe the ceremonies that they conduct before conducting your own.

Your services as a celebrant will usually be required at the weekend, which makes this an ideal side hustle that fits nicely around a 9-5 job. You can meet couples ahead of time on Zoom to finalise details, or meet them in person if they live in your local area.

If you want to gain some experience before starting as a freelance celebrant, you may wish to work for an existing business to learn the ropes, and still get paid.

20. Driving instructor

💸 £1,400 (based on taking 10 lessons per week, at £35 per lesson)

Driving lessons cost on average £25-50 per lesson in the UK. Once you are qualified as a driving instructor, you can expect to earn a considerable side hustle income. Many people will want driving lessons to fit around their 9-5, or at weekends, so it’s an ideal side hustle. If you are able to charge £50 for a lesson in your area, this could definitely take the top spot as one of the highest paying side hustles in the UK depending on hours worked.

You’ll need an adapted car to take clients on driving lessons, so consider joining an existing driving school to learn the ropes before investing in your own adapted car.

21. Sports coaching

💸 £480 average monthly earnings (based on 4 sessions a week, at £30 per session)

If you’re interested in sports, you might want to consider sports coaching in your local area. You could be a coach for just about any sport- football, rugby, tennis or cricket.

For an established cricket coach, you may be able to charge around £30 per hour for a one to one session. A great way into this side hustle is becoming established at your local club, and then offering coaching. As with all service based businesses, your income potential will grow as you grow your client base.

22. Print on demand

💸 £0-£500+ average monthly income (very variable depending on marketing strategy)

Have you ever heard of print on demand? It’s essentially where you create a design, select a printer of your choice (such as Printify), and integrate your printing service with a platform like Etsy, Amazon or your own website.

You don’t hold any stock, and the printing service will make, print, and post the item once it’s been sold. Sounds great, right? It is great, but the margins are pretty low unless you are able to market the product effectively.

You can choose from a whole host of products- from socks to notebook covers! There are so many different product choices. The downside? You need to move a lot of stock in order to make a good side hustle income.

23. Web developer

💸 £1,000+ average monthly income (dependent on number of projects and clients)

Web development is a very lucrative side hustle. This is mostly due to the fact that web development is a complex skill that can’t be learned in just a few days. Many business owners need to outsource this aspect of their business for this reason.

A web developer can charge on a project-by-project basis, or by the hour dependent on the work that is being done. Your income potential will depend on how many clients you can bring in, and whether you can position yourself as an established web developer. If you already do this as a day job and you have relevant contact in the industry? This is ideal!

Other side hustles from the Thrifty Londoner community

After polling the Thrifty Londoner community on Instagram, about their side hustles, it was clear to see that there is a huge amount of variety when it comes to side hustles in the UK. It’s extremely interesting to see which are the highest paying side hustles.

These are some highlights of the more niche or lower paying side hustles in the community that haven’t already been mentioned throughout this article. Hope they help ignite some ideas!

Side HustleMonthly average earnings
Selling on Vinted£50-500 (a popular side hustle!)
Market research£50-100
Teaching£500
Selling luxury vintage fashion online£600
Online surveys£50-100
Baby sitting£200

Top tips for side hustle success

Open a separate bank account

A separate bank account is a key tool that you need in your toolbox when it comes to starting a side hustle. It’s free to do, and will save you a ton of admin in the long term.

My favourite free option is Tide, which allow you to also create and send invoices within the app (for free!) which is invaluable if you’re a service based business. You won’t waste time creating PDF invoices or using expensive software to send invoices to your clients.

A separate bank account for your side hustle also means that you won’t mix up your employment income, and means you can keep better track of your income and expenses, and your overall profitability (which is KEY!)

Try Tide here.

Keep track of your income and outgoings

My best side hustle tip? Keep your finances organised from day one. You’ll want to keep track of any income that you make, and any expenses that you incur, so that when it comes to filling out your Self Assessment Tax Return with HMRC, it’s a breeze!

You can get our free side hustle income and expenses tracker which is a Google Sheet that allows you to track everything seamlessly month by month. Just be sure to save your own copy!

Get clued up on HMRC

When you start side hustling, it’s important to get clued up on your taxes. Check your personal allowance and tax rate band, and be sure to start putting money aside for taxes as soon as you start making sales. No one wants to be saving up for a tax bill retrospectively!

It’s also good to be aware of your trading income allowance. Most people will have a trading allowance of £1,000. This is £1,000 in extra income that you can make each year without needing to pay tax on these earnings or declare them to HMRC.

At the end of the day, you don’t need to be scared of filling out a Self Assessment Tax Return. HMRC have lots of videos on how to complete your tax return, and if in doubt, speak to an accountant who can help you.

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