These days, it’s always useful to have some extra money on hand. Whether for short-term pleasures like an extravagant meal out, or buying a new dress, or more long-terms investments like saving for education, or planning for retirement (especially if you’re planning to retire abroad), extra cash is ALWAYS welcome! Most people rely on company bonuses, or working overtime to make more money. In addition to these, there are a whole bunch of things you can do (in terms of skills you can acquire and opportunities you can take advantage of) that will help you effectively supplement your regular income. Considering holiday season is right around the corner, and spending tends to be high, it is worth taking a look at what you can do to make some extra cash. Here are a few ideas:

1. Photography

Photography may easily be one of the most fun ways to make money. Doing a short photography course can be a great long-term investment, and will also be an outlet for your artistic side. These days, everyone is in need of a photographer for family shoots, childbirths, engagement pictures and more. With holiday season coming up, you’re likely to be able to make some extra cash through simple holiday photo shoots, with the added bonus of kindling your festive spirit! Learning about photography through classes and your own research will enable you to do some shoots in your free time, at your own pace, and make some extra money in a creative and fun manner.

2. Teach Yoga

I love this option! There is more emphasis on health and well-being today than ever before, and that means the market for health professionals, such as yoga teachers has skyrocketed. There are plenty of short term yoga teacher training courses out there, and with a basic certification, you could get a high return on investment through being a personal yoga trainer or even working at a studio in your free time. One of the perks of teaching yoga is that most people prefer to go to classes before or after their nine-to-five workdays, which in turn will enable you to continue your regular job and earn some supplementary income before or after hours. At the same time, you will be maintaining your own health, and thus saving a proportion of additional gym costs – sounds like a win-win to me!

3. Medical Assisting

I know – medical assisting comes up in most articles about making some extra income. There’s a good reason for this though – it works! I’ve listed this profession here because according to the BLS, the job outlook for medical assistants, at 29% between 2012 and 2022 is much higher than average. Physicians will hire more medical assistants as their practices expand, making this a very lucrative field to get into, especially if you are looking for a career change. Also, the average starting salary for top earning medical assistants was around $35,000 in 2013! One of the best parts is that medical assisting can be learned online – from the very comfort of your own home!

4. Rent Out Your Extra Rooms/House

Often people choose to turn an extra bedroom in their house into a study, or a gym room. Another option that a lot of us forget about is renting out that extra bedroom. With sites like AirBnb gaining a lot of popularity, more travelers are choosing to live in a cosy home during their travels, rather than having to splurge for a hotel. These sites allow you to connect with potential renters and based on your comfort level, you can rent out your room (or even just your couch) for the price you’ve set. Not only will this make you some extra money, but it could also lead to you meeting many interesting people and also making some new lifelong friends who might even let you stay at their homes if you happen to travel to their part of the planet! If you are on a long vacation, renting out your house might be a good idea, and this comes with the added benefit of not having to leave your house locked and unattended.

5. Learn About Cars

According to the AAA the average American spends around $9,150 a year on car related costs! Because this spending is so spread out over the course of a year, it’s not something people really think about. Unfortunately, it still adds up. Teaching yourself basic car maintenance tips will lower your costs and save you a lot of money in the long term. Also, being able to fix the simple problems your car may face will save you from regular trips to the mechanics. Maybe, if you get good enough, you could offer to help fix other people’s’ basic car problems for a nominal but still useful fee!

While these are just 5 ways to make some extra cash, there are a variety of different ideas out there that will help bring in some money. If none of these float your boat, then a good rule of thumb is to think of any potential hobbies or interests you may have, and see what aspects of these can be leveraged into a cash-making endeavors. Hopefully, these 5 ideas will inspire you, (or at least reassure you) in knowing that there are definitely some ways to bring in extra money when the going gets tough!