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Updated 4 November 2020
On this page you'll find all the best ways to make money in your spare time whilst at university based on our own experience. We'll keep adding new ways to this page so go ahead and bookmark it. And please do share your own ideas in the comments!
Top ways to make money online and offline
No-risk matched betting
Hands down the quickest way to make a lot of money (well, without breaking the law). Lots of students have genuinely made £100s from this technique. It's completely legal, risk free, tax free, and anyone over 18 in the UK can do it (Not in UK? Skip to no. 2).
It works by taking advantage of free bets regularly offered by betting sites through 'matching' them at a betting exchange. Matched betting eliminates the risk (you are betting both for and against a certain outcome).
This leaves you being able to squeeze out the free bet, which can be as much as £100. Multiply this by how many betting sites there are and you can quite easily come away with a profit of a few hundred pounds.
Owen walks you through how to make your first £13 profit (using a real life example) in this gem of a guide to matched betting. If you know of any better way to make £40/hr sitting at home, please let us know!
An increasingly popular way for students to make money is to fill out online surveys in their spare time. Research companies are always recruiting new members worldwide to answer surveys and test new products.
For a few minutes of form filling, you can make a couple of quid which is paid as cash or rewards. You can bag up to £3 ($5) for some surveys!
A few good ones to try are: Toluna, Branded Surveys, LifePoints, InboxPounds, Onepoll, i-Say, Opinion Outpost, YouGov, Pinecone, SurveyBods, Panel Base, Valued Opinions, The Opinion Panel, Prizerebel, Opinion Bureau, Marketagent, Populus Live, Survey Junkie.
Also sign up for Swagbucks which rewards you for surveys as well as simply surfing the web, watching videos and playing games.
Update: See our new full guide to the best paid online surveys!
Paid for searching the web
Interested in earning cash for doing what you already do online? This has to be one of the easiest methods of making money online without really any effort or change in your behaviour.
This innovative idea by Qmee.com rewards you for searching in Google, Bing, Yahoo, Amazon and eBay. You just install a simple add-on to your browser and when you conduct a search there may be a few sponsored results alongside your normal search.
Each Qmee result has a cash reward attached - if you are interested in it simply click on it and collect your reward.
The best thing is there is no minimum to cashout - our first one was just 72p wired to our Paypal account. You also have the option to donate it to charity.
Sign up now for free and start earning from your own searches! Click here to start.
Online market trading
Whilst this isn't necessarily an easy way to make money, investing in stock markets can be lucrative if you learn to do it properly and safely. By the same token, you may suffer significant losses if you don't take it seriously.
Today there is no need to fund the yachts of Wolf of Wall Street style stock brokers. You can do it all yourself with the help of online market trading platforms.
Having spent many hours researching this new opportunity, I've been experimenting with the popular platform eToro.com.
eToro has over 12 millions users worldwide and offers free practice accounts. It has been featured in the BBC 2 documentary "Traders: Millions by the Minute" and sponsors several Premier League football clubs.
One of the best things on eToro is the CopyTrader feature. This lets you literally see, follow and copy the investments of other top performing traders.
Follow George's complete guide to trading on eToro to learn more. I think $200 is a good amount to get the most out of the learning curve by trying out a few different markets. If nothing else you'll learn a great deal about various investments and industries.
Please be aware that all trading involves risk. eToro is a multi-asset platform which offers real asset ownership and high risk leveraged 'CFD' products. 67% of retail investor accounts lose money when trading CFDs with this provider. You should consider whether you can afford to take the high risk of losing your money. This content is not financial or investment advice.
Start your own website
Interested in generating passive income? You need a website. It's THE way to make money while you sleep.
Starting a website with Bluehost takes less than 20 minutes, costs hardly anything and can be done by an 82 year-old. It only takes a bit of plugging on social media to get your first visitors, and there are plenty of ways to monetise your site.
Save the Student is just one example of a successful website, started at university by Owen Burek in his first year, which has since grown into a full-time and sizable enterprise.
Read Owen's step-by-step guide on how to start a website in 20 minutes. It's really one of the best assets you can have.
Review websites & apps for cash
Well it seems like you're pretty nifty with a web browser, so perhaps it's time to turn pro and browse websites as a paid and fun job!
Introducing UserTesting.com - a new platform that pays everyday people to review all kinds of websites. Each review takes around 20 minutes and bags you $10 (£6.50) via Paypal.
Simply sign up here, complete a test review and look forward to receiving websites in your inbox.
The 'Disney Vault' secret
Credit: Walt Disney Pictures Inc.
To keep demand high across generations, Disney Studios carefully restrict the supply of some home release classics. They are locked away in the 'vault' for 8-10 years before being released for a short unspecified time.
Buy them in this window at normal retail price and you can turn a nice profit when they go off sale for another decade or so.
For example, in 2011 you could buy Beauty and the Beast on Blu-ray 3D for just £24.99. In just a couple of years it was on Amazon for a staggering £74.99!