Last summer my teen started making his own money. He mowed lawns in our neighborhood and worked weekends at a banquet hall. The money he earned went towards expenses like dining out, going to the movies, and saving for a car.
This summer we’re in the midst of a pandemic and his prospects for making money have dimmed. Granted, there are lawns that still need to be mowed, but businesses like the banquet hall will operate differently this year, if at all. Many businesses are not hiring, have reduced their staff, or are filling jobs typically held by teens with adults needing work.
So what can teens do to make money this summer? Here are a variety of ways that teens can earn some money online without leaving the house.
Is your teen a whiz at math? Fluent in French? They can put those skills to use by helping other students online. Teen tutors meet virtually with their clients for an hourly rate. Teens can register their services through sites like TutorCare or be their own boss and manage their services themselves.
Teens who speak English as their native language can check out how to become a “personal conversation coach” with SameSpeak. Teens who are at least 16 years old converse with clients from around the world who want to improve their English. Coaching sessions last 30 minutes and teens receive 10 dollars for every session they complete.
The need for virtual babysitters has exploded since social distancing has made it necessary for many schools, camps and daycares closed. As a virtual babysitter, your teen would be paid to engage a child digitally by telling stories, playing games, or giving art lessons over platforms like Zoom or Skype. Sessions are short, usually starting at one hour. Parents need child care while they participate in meetings, work from home, or just take a break. Teens should reach out to neighbors and friends to advertise their virtual sitting services.
Does your teen have amazing skills in embroidery, drawing, woodworking or more? Then they should consider selling their wares via an online store. Sites like Etsy allow teens who are at least 13 years old to operate a store and sell merchandise as long as a parent owns and supervises the account. Teens can even sell downloadable items like sewing patterns or art if they want to avoid postage and handling.
Teens can also sell thrift store fines, original creations, or other merchandise on eBay with the permission of the adult account holder.
“This call may be recorded for quality control purposes,” is something we have all heard while on the phone. By signing up with Humanatic, your teen could be the one listening and rating the friendliness and helpfulness of those customer service calls. This opportunity is for teens 17 years old and up and, while compensation via PayPal isn’t substantial, it can add up to some extra spending money.
Many corporate brands seek feedback on their products and offer incentives to answer surveys. Survey Junkie and Swagbucks are two popular sites that allow teens 13 years and older to register for free. Teens can accumulate points by completing surveys, watching videos, playing games, or even searching the internet. Points can be redeemed through PayPal or gift cards.
Entrepreneurial-minded teens 13 years old and up can list their digital services in graphic design, proofreading, web programming and more as “gigs” on Fivvr, a website that connects businesses and freelancers. When gigs are completed, Fiverr pays your teen directly, minus a 20 percent commission fee.
Similarly, Freelancer is another website that allows teens 16 years old and up to bid on jobs or offer services in a variety of categories.
As no one knows yet what to expect with regard to social distancing rules, it’s possible that teens may be spending much of their time at home this summer. But that doesn’t mean they can’t find new, creative, and potentially fun ways to earn some income for the future.