Your money-making expert. Financial journalist, TV and radio personality.
Have you ever wondered what you can do to earn extra cash? Something not too challenging that doesn’t take heaps of time but that pays out a bit of pin money? Or perhaps you’ve been looking for a more unusual method of earning an income, something a bit different…
Well look no further! Below you can find 30 weird and wonderful ways to make money. (Some of these are really weird, even a bit disturbing, so do bear in mind you might find your eyebrows shooting up, you might even blush, but they are all legitimate…you’ll find these weirder ones at the end of the article.)
The first of our list of weird ways to make money is a money making opportunity you probably haven’t heard of: being a friend.
Yes, there are people out there who will pay you a fee to be their ‘friend.’
What does it involve?
Whatever the person wants – whether it be someone to show them around the area, to go the cinema with, a workout buddy, an instructor or even a wingman!
If this sounds like an interesting way of making money you should sign yourself up to Rent a Friend.
It’s absolutely free to join and you keep 100% of everything you earn, only people looking for a friend pay.
People tend to charge anything from £5 – £30 an hour for their time, so there is good money to be made.
Did you know you can earn up to £4,000 taking part in clinical trials?
Actually you might do. Clinical trials are already popular so you might find it odd that it is in our list of strange ways to make money. But frankly, we think it’s pretty strange that people are willing to put all sorts of odd drugs in their body for money.
However, when you see the money people can potentially make, it looks a little less strange!
Most clinical trials are Phase One drug testing, meaning you’re one of the first humans to try a drug.
So if the idea of being a human guinea pig fills you with terror, then this probably isn’t the thing for you.
But if you understand the risk and are still happy to go ahead with it, there is certainly money to be made. You can earn anything from a few hundred pounds to a few thousand pounds for a few days’ testing.
For example, Trials4us do overnight trials that pay £120 for every 24 hours you spend with them. FluCamp in London offer up to £3,750 for taking part in their studies, but to do so you will have to contract some kind of cold, flu or respiratory virus. Ugh!
Yes, you read that correctly – you can make money as a mermaid!
The art of mermaiding has become serious business indeed. It’s also an excellent way to combine a love for the ocean with performance art skills… and cute bikini tops!
Sure, it may sound a little too mystical for the more level-headed among us, but being a mermaid these days no longer revolves around luring sailors overboard. It’s simply the art of entertainment.
So, while a lithe body and a long breath may come in handy, making money as a mermaid really comes down to a love for the limelight – and the ability to keep a crowd coming back for more.
Various training academies across the UK offer a range of courses. Check out the link below to make money as a mermaid.
Instaprints makes it easy for you to get paid for your Instagram selfies. Just link your Instagram profile with your Instaprints account and get paid for any pictures you’ve taken of pretty much anything… including yourself! Be aware that anyone can buy them and you can’t say how they will be used – but mostly they are used for prints or photo-books.
With Instaprints you can set your own rate and they will handle all the shipping and printing to customers. You can earn anything from a few pounds up to £50 per image… definitely a bit weird but worth checking out!
Want to avoid inflation-busting cash crashes? Put your money into gold via the smartphone app Glint. Not only can you buy gold which is stored in a real vault in Switzerland, you can also spend it too using a specially made debit card.
You’ll avoid any decreases caused by inflation and you can switch your gold into an actual currency at any time if you’re worried about its value.
It all works in the way of a normal bank, and your gold and money are protected. The Financial Conduct Authority audits Glint.
So, feel like you want to buy some gold? Get downloading the app on the Apple App Store or Android Store, and get your new debit card delivered in just a few days.
Getting paid to test food sounds amazing, doesn’t it?
And, unlike getting paid to sleep, it’s something you have a good shot at actually being hired to do.
As a food tester, research companies are interested in getting your views on food products.
Once you’ve tasted the food you’ll be asked to give your feedback on the product – this might be as part of a focus group or you might simply just have to give it a score in a questionnaire.
In between each food sample you’ll be given a palette cleaner, such as a cracker and water, so you’re ready for the next taste.
Tests tend to last around an hour or two, but maybe slightly longer if you’re taking part in a focus group.
You’re not going to make a career out of it, it’s really just a nice way to supplement your income, but you can earn between £5-£55 depending on whether you’re just completing a questionnaire or if you’re taking part in a focus group.
Have you ever been told you don’t get paid to stand around and do nothing?
Well, here’s a job that genuinely pays you to do just that – getting paid to queue (or line sitting).
How does it work, you ask?
Well, we’ve all seen the long queues as people wait in line to be the first to get their hands on the latest Apple product, sometimes even enduring a whole night of rain. Chances are at least one of those people would have paid you to take their place.
Equally there are many people who would love to get the latest iPhone or concert tickets but can’t because they have work or family commitments. They may well be willing to pay for your line sitting services.
Despite success in the US, it’s still a relatively unheard of practice in the UK so you’d be leading the way with this money making opportunity.
You’d be able to set your own price, either at a fixed rate or an agreed amount per hour/half hour. For example, you could charge a fixed rate of £100, or agree on £6 an hour.
Ok, unlike the last point, this is a slightly misleading title.
You can’t make money JUST by watching TV, but there are certainly ways you can incorporate watching TV into your money making process, and that’s pretty cool right?
For example you could make money by giving your views on the latest television programmes by joining a focus group or taking part in relevant online surveys. You could even set up your own blog reviewing the latest TV programs.
Why not become a beekeeper and make money selling the honey?
Maybe you can think of several reasons not to – the fear of getting stung or not having the first clue how to start.
But it’s a good money maker because it’s also vital to the environment. We need good bee keepers to help act against the number of bees dying all around the world.
You don’t need loads of room or time to be a beekeeper, in fact professional beekeepers can get away with inspecting their bees only once a month.
However, you’ll just need to put some initial time investment to learn everything you need to know about bee keeping. It’s important to know the very best way to keep bees as some amateur owners have harmed their bees by not knowing the ins and outs of caring for them properly.
It’s not a quick money maker either. It can take more than one season for your bees to start producing honey, but once they do you can begin to sell it.
You won’t just be making money, you’ll be helping the environment and, who knows, you might discover a new passion.
There’s nothing particularly weird about making money collecting certain items and selling them on at a profit so you might wonder why this one is in our list of strange ways to make money.
Well, there are very strange and surprising things you can collect to make a profit.
For example, did you know you could make money collecting Disney DVD and blu-rays?
Or would you have thought you could make money collecting Barbie dolls?
You’d be surprised just how many ways you can make money collecting.
Admittedly this isn’t something that everyone can do – at least half the population (men) are already unqualified for it!
But when it comes to strange ways to make money…this is pretty high on the list!
Yes, amazingly, you really can make money selling your breast milk.
The World Health Organisation has said that the best food for a new born infant is breast milk from another healthy mother if the infant’s mother cannot breast feed herself, which has resulted in a demand for healthy breast milk.
You’re able to donate to UK milk banks but you won’t get paid for this, or you can sell your breast milk online.
Sites like Onlythebreast.com allow you to post an ad online and wait for a response from someone who requires breast milk.
You can make good money as well, at the moment four fluid ounces of milk are being sold for £15.
There are genuine concerns, however, about people who buy breast milk online. Buyers are rarely sure of the health of the mother they’re buying from and so risk getting milk contaminated by drugs or infections
Selling sperm or eggs might sound desperate, but it’s perfectly legal in the UK to do so.
If you’re a man, well, frankly it’s an easy way to earn extra cash! It could even be described as a leisure activity.
The only requirements are that you should not have any history of sexually-transmitted infection, or a personal or family history of inheritable disorders. You must also undergo medical screening, including a HIV test.
Be aware that you may also be turned away if your sperm quality isn’t high enough (don’t take it personally!)
According to the HFEA you can’t technically be paid for donating sperm, but you are given £35 per donation to cover expenses.
Egg donation, however, is a much more serious procedure…and not a lot of fun.
The egg donor must be between the ages of 18 and 36 and, before the donation takes place, a donor will have to undergo screening to limit the chance of genetic abnormalities and sexually-transmitted diseases.
If you’re found to be suitable to donate, you’ll be matched with a couple who have infertility issues. You’re then given fertility drugs to administer at home; these stimulate the ovaries into producing a number of eggs.
The HFEA has capped the amount you can make for egg donation at £750, hoping that this will only encourage people to give eggs out of altruistic intent and not because they need the extra money.
If you’re not sure what life modelling is, it’s modelling nude as artists paint or sculpture you.
So, first off you’ve got to decide whether you’re comfortable standing nude in front of a load of strangers…while you’re starkers…it’s not for everybody!
Don’t worry if you don’t think you’re in perfect shape though, this is about interesting and real body shapes so don’t be put off if you do want to give it a go – plus you’ll hopefully end up with a beautiful sculpture or picture of yourself.
You’re paid an hourly rate – the recommended rate is £20 an hour but it will vary depending on where you are, the nature of the class and your experience.
If you’ve had a real life horror story then you can make money selling it either to a magazine or newspaper.
We know that might sound callous at first but we all know the saying ‘When life gives you lemons…’
For a good, unpredictable story newspapers will pay between £200 – £2,000. In fact one of our readers managed to get £2,200 for their story.
You could go on to do more. If you can help others, why not write a self-help book?
This one isn’t really that bonkers, but it sounds strange at first – you can make money selling your hair.
Despite huge scientific progresses, we still haven’t found a cure for baldness so wigs, hair extensions and hair pieces are still in high demand.
You’ll need at least 6 inches of hair and it must be clean, healthy and shiny – any damaged hair will not be accepted.
If you’ve got an unusual natural hair colour then you can get more for it, although remember to speak to a wig seller to find out the price before cutting your hair. It’d be awful to lose all that hair only to find out you don’t like the price!
Prices vary, but some wig sellers will pay up to £200 for your hair, so there is potential money to be made.
Could you imagine getting paid to sleep?
How brilliant would that be?
Well some lucky so and so’s get to do just that, and they’re called bed testers.
Bed testers get to test out a whole range of beds, often luxury ones, and then give a verdict based on the night’s sleep they had.
We’re really including this one for a bit of fun because it’s really hard to become a full time bed tester – as you can imagine, it’s very competitive! Keep an eye out for adverts here and elsewhere – the opportunity seems to come around once a year and it really is worth applying for!
Most people were first introduced to the idea of being a bed tester after Hotel Chatter put out a call in 2006 for a professional to test their 25,000 beds.
Could you imagine? Well, we can always dream (although, unlike bed testers, we won’t get paid for it!)
Fiverr is a unique website in that you can get paid to do just about anything. You might get $5 for posting a photograph of your dog. Or, they may want you to buy a fridge magnet from wherever you are.
The site does offer more traditional paying services too such as freelance writing or graphic design. Nonetheless, you can be paid for doing pretty much anything.
It’s worth checking out if you’re short of cash, planning a holiday or just want to earn some extra money on the side.
Nope, we’re not even joking about this! In fact, there are truly loads of people out there just dying to get their hands on your old toilet rolls.
We did a little investigation into this rising money-making trend and gathered some important information to help you earn extra cash..
While most of us might toss the little brown tube at the end of the toilet roll into the recycling bin without a second thought, a lot of people actually treasure them for the infinite DIY possibilities they hold.
Here are just a few of their most popular uses:
The thing is, most people would need more toilet rolls than they can produce to see a project through, and therefore welcome the opportunity to invest in a few extra wherever they can.
Have you always enjoyed making your own outfits for dress-up parties, but never thought of making money out of it? Well, if you get into the weird and wonderful world of cosplay, you can earn cash while having fun.
More than just any old dress-up, cosplay (costume play) is an integral part of the geek subculture. It involves wearing an outfit and accessories to resemble a specific character as closely as possible. That could be somebody from a video game, cartoon, fantasy novel, film or series. Many cosplay enthusiasts also attend comic conventions.
You can make money in so many different ways these days, and yes, you heard us right – that includes empty boxes. With the rise in popularity of influencers and bloggers, we’re also seeing an increasing demand to sell old boxes for tech and designer goods online.
High fashion designer labels like Michael Kors, Gucci, and Prada, and even high street ones like Pandora and Glossier, all give away free branded boxes and bags when you make a purchase with them. Instead of throwing these into the recycling bin, list them online as there are plenty of people out there who are more than happy to pay to take them off your hands.
If design bling isn’t your thing (sorry), then you can also make cash selling tech boxes, perfume bottle boxes and even plain old cardboard boxes… who knew?
Be warned, some of these are truly bizarre (and some a bit kinky)… there’s nothing illegal but some are definitely unconventional.
There are few things you can count on when embarking on a motorway journey, but two are certain. The traffic will be terrible, and you will have to do some serious swerving to avoid roadkill.
Yes, roadkill is a serious problem and happens far more often that we would like to admit. The reason that it’s not more visible is because it’s someone’s job to clear up the carcasses.
Roadkill collectors find, remove and dispose of the motorway’s unlucky victims and provide a service to the more squeamish among us. Namely, dealing with the tragedies of dead badgers, deer and even dogs.
While roadkill collectors in the UK are unlikely to find a moose or a bison on the side of the road as in the US, they do have to enjoy driving as they spend the majority of their days combing roads for collisions.
While some cleaners are paid per hour they work, others are paid per animal removed.
In Farnham, 2016, the role of a road kill cleaner was advertised at £7 an hour, with the proviso that the successful applicant would be able to work in all weather conditions and have a strong stomach.
Look on the bright side: at least you won’t be competing with many people for the job!
The internet is a minefield and no one knows that better than a Google Sensitive content checker. They spend their working hours trawling through disturbing YouTube videos and blocking the worst from being seen on social media.
Responding to complaints about disturbing content ranging from pornography to extreme violence, content checkers are tasked with removing the material within 24 hours and reporting it to government authorities.
Writing on Buzzfeed.com, one former content checker revealed that he was reviewing over 15,000 images a day from Google platforms including Google Images and Picasa.
Working at Google for over 9 months without any kind of psychological or emotional support, however, this anonymous techie asserts that he needed to search out serious therapy before he could continue. Even then, Google made him redundant.
This highlighted the need for proper mental health and technical support for those doing such jobs.
It might be worth remembering that your mental well-being is priceless before considering this kind of dirty work.
It doesn’t take much more than a quick Google Search to find that cleaning in the nude seems to be gaining professional traction in the UK.
While you’ll find a bunch of dodgy ads on the likes of Craigslist and Gumtree, there’s actually a growing number of companies offering these services at premium prices.
Sure, it may seem somewhat perverse to anyone who prefers the comfort of being fully clothed at all times. But, in most cases, it’s really just a case of preference.
In short, some people just prefer being naked and feel more comfortable in the company of other like-minded souls. These people typically refer to themselves as naturists. They purely enjoy the freedom of being naked rather than seeing it through any sort of sexualised prism.
This subculture has grown in popularity over the past few decades – especially since the 1960s. More and more naturist resorts, cruises and beaches have popped up here, there and everywhere. While this is all great, many naturists feel it’s unfair that they can’t live out their chosen lifestyle more publicly, beyond holidays and recreation.
Hence the rise of everyday naturist-friendly services, such as cleaning.
Don’t mind spending time getting to know some ghosts?
Well, headstone cleaning could be for you. As well as being a unique way to make money, it will give you the chance to help grieving families sustain memories of loved ones.
Although cemeteries do a great job of maintaining their sites, headstone cleaners are still needed because they don’t have time to give every grave the attention it needs.
Headstones are made from a variety of materials which all require different cleaning methods. Limestone, granite and marble are commonly used but older ones made from shale or sand may stump you.
Do a little research, however, and you’ll find that there are lots of specialist tools and detergents available to you.
Once you’ve mastered the basics, you can also always expand your service to include flower planting and placement, watering, repainting and basic landscaping.
You could charge per the hour or offer a package with tri-annual upkeep visits.
At The Headstone Cleaning Company, for example, prices for a full professional clean start at £80.00, and their annual care starts at £55.00.
It might not be as disturbing a job as you think!
Ever wondered what dog food actually tastes like?
OK, maybe not, that would be quite disturbing. Would you think otherwise if I told you you could get paid for it?
Sitting in the comfort of your own home, you would have to open a few tins of dog food a day, smell them and sample them.
As quoted in The Guardian, Phillip Wells, the chief taster for Lily’s Kitchen pet food, says: “although dogs’ palates are different to ours, taste is an important quality check to ensure each different ingredient is perfectly balanced in just the right way”.
He adds that “trying the food is also a good way to pick up on the nuances of the cooking; this works especially well on the dry kibbles!”
Wells reveals that £20,000 is an average starting salary for an entry level job in his department, but that £50,000 or more is “easily achievable” for a technical director. As well tasting products, they will also be dreaming up new doggy delights.
While you might turn your nose up at your plate if you were offered dog food for dinner, the Animal Feed Regulations 2010 says that the meat is safe for people to eat. It must be derived from animals passed as fit for human consumption.
You never know, you might find out you like it!
“Struggling to find time to clean your garden? Feeling the strain of an injury/health issue? Or maybe you’re just tired of the constant family arguments about whose turn it is, whose pet it is, etc?”
So opens PAWServices page on professional poo scooping.
Offering weekly, fortnightly or monthly deals, this canine-loving company will clean up your garden. They will also sanitise and deodorise the area where pets have been making a mess.
If you love dogs and you like getting down and dirty with nature, then this could be the job for you.
Dog poop is a breeding ground for nasty diseases such as Salmonellosis, and is also a nightmare to clean off the carpet. It is one of those services that will never go out of business.
PAWServices’ prices start at £10.00 a week but, as reported by the Express in 2014, setting your own prices can pay off. Tim Stone, 54, managed to earn an incredible £56,000 a year by charging £28 per month for four visits!
Sounds a cynical way to earn extra cash as funerals are horrible affairs in many ways, but they do provide one of the most disturbing ways to make money. You can get paid to show up as a professional mourner.
This might sound weird, but professional mourners – or moirologists to give them their official title – have been in practice for well over 2,000 years.
Sometimes people die without many family members or friends left. In this case, people will pay you to come along as a respectful way of ‘making up the numbers’.
It’s a job that’s not for everyone, you’ll be around people at their lowest moments. If you have the social decorum and the spirit to hack it, you could be making £60-90 a day.
It seems you can sell most things for a bit of money, but…selling your poo? Here at MoneyMagpie, we are constantly looking for ways to make a bit of extra cash. Some are pretty standard (selling CDs), others are more unusual (from your Orgasms, see below). This definitely falls into the latter category.
It does sound a bit far-fetched but seriously, FMT or Fecal Microbiota Transplantation, is a therapy involving the insertion of fecal matter from a healthy person into the gut of a sick one to treat gut microbiome-related conditions.
Fecal transplants are being used to try and treat long-term and chronic illnesses such as Crohn’s Disease, Ulcerative Colitis, and even for things like Obesity. Some donations are being taken in by stool banks but most are being harvested online globally.
Not everyone can sell their poo, as there are provisos set in place in order for people to donate: you must have regular bowel movements that meet a list of criteria; you must live a healthy, low-risk of disease lifestyle, and have no history of the illnesses FMT is used to combat. In fact only 2 per cent of people that apply get selected. So this is a competitive business.1 in 1000 get selected and it is purely down to the luck of your gut.
Yes, really. It may not be to everyone’s taste, but it can be a very big earner for many people. As mentioned at the beginning of this article, here at MoneyMagpie we have recently written articles about how to sell your knickers and your used tights to make money.
Don’t get us wrong – we understand not everyone may be totally comfortable doing this. This is okay, just keep scrolling! But for those who are interested, read on.
Last year, The Metro released an article by a woman who claims to make up to £4,000 a month selling her used underwear online. Yes – £4,000 Great British Pounds a MONTH.
It’s not just knickers and socks, either. You can make money from all dirty laundry. Bras, skirts, dresses and even sweaty tops sell online. It’s easy money, really. Websites like Sofia Gray are specifically made for this purpose. It is a good place to start if you are unsure of how to go about it.
Earlier in the year, one of our team was watching Naked Attraction on Channel Four and a woman said that she makes her money by “being paid to orgasm”. Like many viewers, our intrepid team member was immediately intrigued by what this woman’s job entailed! Was this a fun way she referred to her career in sex work or was it something else? The guest then went on to say to host Anna Richardson: “I’m used to nudity because I’m a sex toy specialist” …. so our colleague started wondering, are there other ways that people can be paid to orgasm?
She got her MoneyMagpie hat on and did some research.
The short answer is … yes there are.
Get Paid to Orgasm is an Over 18 topic and the article contains subjects which some readers may find offensive and reference of a sexual nature.
So there we have it. 30 truly weird and wonderful (and occasionally eyebrow-raising) ways to earn extra cash. Let us know if you’ve tried any of these in the comments below and do share your own ideas on different ways to earn extra cash with us. Happy earning.