Side Hustle Ideas for International Students
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Top 10 Ideas To Earn Money As An International Student

Updated on February 15, 2022 03:58 pm
Top 10 Ideas To Earn Money As An International Student

Moving to a new country can be overwhelming. For international students, the primary concerns related to money are managing personal expenses and generating enough income to sustain. Even if you get a stipend or a handsome amount for pocket money, you always need some extra bucks for those fun weekends and exploring the country.

It is difficult to take up a full-time job for international students in the United States due to several visa restrictions. In addition, there is a time constraint as you need to focus on your academics.

A side-hustle is the answer. These part-time jobs are a good headway to preparing yourself for the world after school. As a bonus, managing money helps you be better at budgeting, investing, and saving.

Here Are Top 5 Ideas To Earn Money Online As An International Student In The US:

1. Content Writing

Do you have a knack for storytelling? If so, this is the right fit for you. Reach out to some companies or go online to find some writing gigs. All you need is a device, internet, and skills.

This will help you gain experience and make decent money. Network in colleges and your surroundings to attain clients and work. You might even land a dream job while scouting for different clients online. It is a sustainable option if you are ready to put in consistent efforts.

Look for opportunities on freelancer or crowdsourcing platforms such as,, and Upwork.

2. Tutoring Online

As a student, you would be proficient with one subject, skill, or domain. You can put this knowledge to use and tutor young kids or your juniors in the college in exchange for fees online.

If someone is looking for an in-person personal tutor, you can offer your services offline too. Many students home tutor children in the neighborhood who stay with working parents. Look out for opportunities on your notice boards or search them online.

3. Stock Market Trading

Stock market investment is a lucrative channel to earn massive returns but is subject to market risk. To get the right knowledge and financial sense, start taking courses online join college clubs with similar interests. The first step here is research, learning, and networking.

Acquire full knowledge about stock markets, investments, returns, and then practically apply the knowledge. Choose a safe company first and steadily invest to reap greater benefits. Don't invest blindly, follow the right strategies to ace the business.

4. E-commerce Shop

Can you bake delicious cupcakes? Or prepare scrumptious meals? Or weave scrunchies? Then, sell them. You can reach a massive audience and sell your creative work with social media.

All you have to do is market your product. You can also turn this side hustle into a full-fledged business in the future. In any case, it will still make for a great entry on your resume.

5. Paid Surveys

Enrolling as a surveyor for paid surveys is a wholesome channel to earn money. Choose one of the platforms and sign up with your email. Fill the surveys consistently and earn rewards from the comforts of your couch.

Also, look out for certain companies who conduct surveys regularly and pay a handsome amount to the participants. Popular sites for online surveys are Survey Junkie,, and BrandedSurveys.

Read: Can international students work while studying in the US?


5 Ideas To Make Money Offline As An International Student In The US

1. Hospitality

If restaurants in your university area are not hiring, food outlets such as McDonald's and Dominos are always looking for part-time employees. You can secure a position for the weekend or during a peak season to earn some side income.

You can either wait at tables or work behind the cash counter. They pay sufficient money, and you will earn tips from the customers.

2. Tour Guide

As a student, you would love to explore the country or city. Tourists arrive in hundreds in foreign countries rather frequently. Knowing the city well enough or learning as you explore is a great asset as you can become a tour guide. On the weekends, take tourists around the town.

Show them some underrated places or take them to a local eatery to taste authentic cuisine. This is an amazing way of earning money and meeting new people every week.

You may also have the liberty to choose your rates and get paid accordingly. This will be a great chance to meet new people and engage in distinct conversations.

3. Babysitting

If you love kids, then this is the perfect job for you. Most working parents are looking out for individuals who can take care of their babies during their office hours.

It is a flexible and fun job to do. Also, the pay is really good if you know how to negotiate. You can also connect with a native family when you are staying alone as a student there. You can polish your soft skills and earn good money right here.

4. Work On-Campus

Some universities offer work on campus. It is mostly offered on a part-time basis to the students. You can approach your administration and lookout for opportunities online. There are various jobs available in the university itself.

Talk to the concerned person about the potential positions. The admission desk or the student help desk should be able to guide you. Making money on campus is the most efficient use of time and travel costs. Plus, you are on campus, soaking up all the vibe.

5. Get Roommates

You can sublet a room if you have rented an apartment or share a room. It depends on how comfortable you are with the arrangements.

Most colleges don't have enough on-campus living solutions for all of the new students, and many students are looking for cheaper accommodations.


As an international student, you have plenty of options to generate passive income. These channels are mostly flexible and may work wonders for you. All you have to do is identify your skill set and monetize it in the right direction. Choose any of these ways to start with and move up the ladder as you gain experience and expertise.

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