How To Earn $1,000 For The Holidays – 17 Best Ways

Do you want to know how to earn $1,000 for the holidays? Whether you are looking for something permanent or if you want to make some extra side cash, there are many different things you could do to make extra money for the holidays. After all, the holidays can be quite expensive for many people….

Michelle Schroeder-Gardner

Last Updated: December 4, 2023

Disclosure: This post may contain affiliate links, meaning if you decide to make a purchase via my links, I may earn a commission at no additional cost to you. See my disclosure for more info.

Do you want to know how to earn $1,000 for the holidays?

Whether you are looking for something permanent or if you want to make some extra side cash, there are many different things you could do to make extra money for the holidays.

After all, the holidays can be quite expensive for many people.

Between Halloween, Thanksgiving, Christmas, New Year’s and the many other holidays you may celebrate, you can find yourself spending a lot more money than normal in the next few months.

Perhaps you want to learn how to earn $1,000 for the holidays so you don’t dip into your savings to pay for presents. Or, you may be unsure of how you’re going to afford the holidays in the first place.

In fact, just on presents alone, the average person spends around $1,000. When you factor in the cost of traveling to see family and friends, food, clothing, and more, it can quickly add up.

This can lead to financial stress for many people, and that’s definitely not something you want during the holidays.

Learning how to earn $1,000 for the holidays may keep your holidays as stress free as possible. If you’re feeling like you need to spend that much on the holidays, learning how to make extra money could prevent you from going into debt or living paycheck to paycheck.

In addition, you can keep more cash on hand for unexpected holiday spending, you can continue putting money towards savings or debt, and so on.

Related content:

Here’s how to earn $1,000 for the holidays.


1. Get paid for your opinion

Have you taken surveys for cash yet?

Taking surveys is one way to make extra money for the holidays, but it’s unlikely you’ll make $1,000 from surveys alone. Still, taking online surveys is very easy work, and it’s very possible to make money from surveys on the side of other options on this list.

To make the most money answering surveys, I recommend signing up for as many survey companies as you can, as each one will only send a few surveys your way each month.

The 12 paid online survey sites I recommend signing up for include:

  1. American Consumer Opinion
  2. Survey Junkie
  3. Swagbucks
  4. InboxDollars
  5. Branded Surveys
  6. OneOpinion
  7. Pinecone Research
  8. Prize Rebel
  9. MySoapBox
  10. Opinion Outpost
  11. User Interviews – This one pays $50 to $100 an hour for taking part in a focus group!
  12. Springboard America

These survey companies are all free to join and free to use!


2. Watch someone’s home

People tend to travel more during the holiday season, and that’s where housesitters come in. You may be taking in their mail, watering their plants, taking care of the home, watching their pets, and so on.

Most housesitters stay at their client’s house, but some may be asked just to check in occasionally. 

Sometimes housesitters are paid – the going rate is around $25-$50 a day. But, other times you get to stay in new places for free, which can help you save a lot of money if you want to go somewhere new for the holidays.

Related: How We Became Professional House Sitters In Europe & Saved Over $5,000


3. Walk dogs or pet sit

If you want to learn how to earn $1,000 for the holidays and you love pets, then you may want to look into walking dogs or watching pets.

The holidays are a time when people are busier or going out of town, and they tend to need pet sitters or dog walkers more often. 

Other than Rover, you may be able to find pet watching gigs through Craigslist, Facebook, and more.


4. Sell items that you already own

Everyone has extra stuff lying around their home. You may have clothing, electronics (such as an old cell phone), books, appliances, and so on that you may be able to sell online or in-person.

Ways to sell items may include going to:

  • Thrift stores– Some may pay on consignment, cash on the spot, or store credit. Taking your stuff to a thrift store will probably be the fastest way to sell things as they will likely offer you cash for whatever they can sell, but you may not be able to make the most amount of money as you would on something such as eBay.
  • eBay– This online auction site can be a great way to reach a larger market.
  • Craigslist– Selling on this free site can be one of the easiest ways to make money fast for the holidays.
  • Garage/yard sale– This can be an easy way to sell a lot of things at once, plus you can do it all from your home. A downside is that the pay is usually lower.
  • Facebook– There are specific groups on Facebook dedicated to selling items in your area. Facebook makes it SO easy to sell things you no longer want.


5. Work one-time gigs on Craigslist

Don’t want to get a second job or take on a side hustle? One-time gigs may be a better option for you because you can find ones that work for your schedule.

One of the best things about one-time gigs is that you usually get paid right after you complete the work, which means this is quick cash for the holidays!

If you want to learn how to earn $1,000 for the holidays with random gigs, just go to Craigslist and find the “gigs” section.

Here are some jobs I found through a quick search:

  • Remove yard debris
  • House cleaner
  • Restroom attendant
  • Moving big plants
  • Help towing a vehicle
  • Passing out flyers and brochures

These were all extremely easy for me to find. It literally took me less than five minutes to find several different gigs happening within the week.


6. Sell items on Etsy

Etsy is an online marketplace for handmade and vintage items, and it’s one of my favorite places to shop for holiday gifts. 

More and more people are choosing to buy one-of-a-kind, handmade, and gifts from small businesses. This makes selling on Etsy a great idea if you’re creative and want to know how to earn $1,000 for the holidays.

You can sell knit hats, printables, customized mugs, prints, embroidered items, stickers, jewelry, and so much more.

You can learn more at:


7. Get a roommate

Simply having a roommate for a month or two may allow you to quickly make $1,000 for the holidays.

There are many places where you can advertise your rental. You can put a sign on your front lawn, advertise in a newspaper, or place an online ad. 

Platforms like Craigslist and Facebook Marketplace are some of the best choices these days because everyone and everything is online now.

When you make your listing, always be honest! You should be honest about how big the room is, what rooms come with the agreement, if there is a separate entrance, and more. Also, be sure to add pictures of what is included.

You can learn how to earn $1,000 for the holidays by renting a room in your house at What You Need To Know About Renting A Room In Your House.


8. Sell items on Amazon

Amazon, the world’s largest online retailer has many, many people who sell items and earn money from home. 

In the first year that my friend Jessica’s family ran their Amazon FBA business together, working less than 20 hours a week total, they made over $100,000 profit!

If you want to learn more about starting an Amazon business, I recommend signing up for this free training that will teach you how to sell products on Amazon and make $100 to $500 per day.

9. Get rewarded for being online with Swagbucks

Swagbucks is a company where you can earn free gift cards and cash for the things you normally do online, such as shopping, searching the web, and taking surveys. 

Swagbucks gives out 7,000 free gift cards every day, and they have given out $595,739,003 in cash and free gift cards since they were created. 

You can receive a free $5 bonus just for signing up right now.


10. Babysit

Parents are almost always looking for good babysitters, and they are willing to pay well for a night out. Leading up to the holidays, parents often have more events and evenings out that they need sitters for, which means there are more opportunities to make extra money for the holidays.

If you’re interested in learning how to earn $1,000 for the holidays as a babysitter, check out websites like and They allow you to advertise your services, while letting you see if there is anyone in your area looking for help. This means that you may be able to find a one-time job or even a permanent babysitting gig, just by searching online.


11. Become a mystery shopper

Mystery shopping can be one of the more fun ways to make extra holiday cash because you get paid to eat at restaurants or go shopping.

While you likely won’t make your money back right away, you can sign up for mystery shopping companies today and get your first mystery shop done fairly quickly.

Some companies don’t require you to spend money either, such as if you do a phone call mystery shop. For those, you just have to call a store and pretend to be a customer with questions.

Back when I was paying off my student loan debt, I mystery shopped a lot to make extra income. I made anywhere from $150 to $200 a month mystery shopping and received free meals, makeup, and more. I only used Bestmark for mystery shopping, so I know that they are a 100% legitimate company.

There are other legitimate mystery shopping companies out there, but you should always do your research.

Learn more at Want To Make An Extra $100 A Month? Learn How To Become A Mystery Shopper.


12. Get cashback when you shop online

Since you may already be shopping online for the holidays, getting cashback when you shop online is an easy way to earn extra money.

Cashback websites, like Rakuten, give you a percentage back on every purchase you make when you shop through one of their partner stores. 

Here are examples of how much you can earn back from some stores:

  • Target 1% cash back
  • Walmart up to 6% cash back
  • Macys 6% cash back

Those are just a few, and these stores and the cashback amount changes from time to time. 


13. Rent out your RV

RVing is super popular right now, and many people are looking to rent one for their next trip.

Many RVs sit unused in storage lots, driveways, and backyards, so why not try to make a little extra holiday cash while you’re not using your RV?

In addition to extra money, you may be able to earn enough to cover some of your RV ownership costs, such as maintenance, storage, etc.

RVshare is helping travelers save money by cutting out the middleman through renting RVs directly from owners.

Think of it as Airbnb for RVs (RV Airbnb!). My sister actually has experience doing an RV share by renting two travel trailers, and she loved it! It seems like a great side hustle to do if you already have an RV. If you’re interested in enjoying an RV rental for yourself, you can check out possible RV rentals for you and your family here.

If you want to learn how to earn $1,000 for the holidays with your RV, read How To Make Extra Money By Renting Out Your RV.


14. Find a retail job to earn extra money for the holidays

Every year, several hundred thousand holiday jobs open up, so if you are looking for a temporary job, then a seasonal holiday job may be the perfect fit for you. 

The holidays are extremely busy for the majority of the businesses around the world, which means that most of them are looking for temporary holiday help to get them through their busy months.

According to CNN Business, here are just a few companies hiring for the holidays this year:

  • UPS is hiring 100,000 part-time and full-time seasonal workers
  • The US Postal Service is bringing on an additional 40,000 workers 
  • Kohl’s wants to hire 90,000 seasonal workers to their stores and warehouses
  • Michaels is adding over 20,000 workers – up from 25% last year
  • is hiring more than 10,000 holidays workers to deliver food and gifts

15. Deliver food

During busy times of the year, services that deliver groceries and meals see an increase in orders. 

If you want to learn how to earn $1,000 for the holidays delivering food, you can check out companies like DoorDash, Instacart, Shipt, UberEats, and more. 

There are many different companies out there, and some drivers work for more than one because it gives you more opportunities to make money.

You can learn more at Instacart Shopper Review: How much do Instacart Shoppers earn?

16. Trim your bills

This idea probably won’t work for everyone, but some people may be able to cut their spending so they have extra money for the holidays. 

If you want to learn how to earn $1,000 for the holidays by trimming your bills, here are some ideas:

  • Switch to a cheaper cell phone plan – There are cell phone plans for as little as $15 a month.
  • Get rid of some streaming services– Paying for Hulu, Netflix, Amazon Prime, Disney+, and more can really add up. Cutting one or two of these won’t make you $1,000, but it can help a little. 
  • Eat more meals at home– We all know going out to eat costs more than eating at home.
  • Take advantage of the library– You could cut your entertainment spending by getting free books, movies, music, and more at the library.
  • Do a no-spend challenge– Challenging yourself not to spend any extra money for a week or month could free up some extra money for the holidays.

17. Get paid to help people around their house

There are many different home-related tasks that people need help with around the holidays. These are things like cleaning, shoveling snow, organizing, hanging lights, and so on.

Many of these jobs are one-time gigs, but house cleaning, for example, can be something you do every week for the same person. 

If you’re interested in learning how to earn $1,000 for the holidays helping people around the house, you can share your services on Facebook, NextDoor, or post flyers somewhere locally.


How can I make money fast for the holidays?

There are many different ways to make money fast for the holidays.

Some of the fastest ways can be found above, and there are a ton of different options depending on what you are looking for.

How would an extra $1,000 help you with paying for the holidays?

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Michelle Schroeder-Gardner

Author: Michelle Schroeder-Gardner

Hey! I’m Michelle Schroeder-Gardner and I am the founder of Making Sense of Cents. I’m passionate about all things personal finance, side hustles, making extra money, and online businesses. I have been featured in major publications such as Forbes, CNBC, Time, and Business Insider. Learn more here.

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  1. lovely ideas for side hustle and extra income, thanks for sharing!

  2. this is absolutely why I love the power of the Internet and side hustles because it so simple to earn passive income.

  3. David @ Filled With Money

    Having an extra $1,000 just in time for the holidays doesn’t sound like a bad idea to me.

  4. This is an amazing piece, Michelle.

    Make money online opportunities are endless.

    Of all the strategies you mentioned, the one I’m deeply fascinated with is No. 14.

    If one has a skill, getting an online job is very easy.

    Thanks a lot for sharing.

    – Emmanuel