Your money-making expert. Financial journalist, TV and radio personality.
Want to know how to make money in your lunch hour? Good news – the Money Magpies have compiled a list of the top five ways to turn those sixty minutes into money-spinners. Have a look at some of our ideas to see how much you could achieve in your spare time.
Are you still seething about this morning’s commute? We all know that feeling when your train’s delayed – but did you know you can make some money out of it?
It’s simple. Load up your train operators’ site and look for ‘delay repay’. Their sites should make the delay repay feature prominent. Some sites will require you to register or login in to make a claim, but it’s worth it if you are struck by frequent delays (or even just the one-off claim could make you money). You will then need to provide journey details and a photo, or a screengrab, of your ticket. Remember, when stating the journey delays, you should work your delay from when you arrived at the end destination, not when it left the station you boarded, as some trains can make up for lost time on route.
Some operators, such as Northern by Arriva, have also introduced automatic delay repay schemes. However, there are catches. You will need to have booked your ticket via their site or app, if you’ve used another site you will have to submit your claim the old-fashioned way. Another operator, GTR, automatically generate delay repays for their key Smartcard customers, but you need to tap in and out on your journeys to be eligible for a claim.
So, how much can you make? Delay repays are typically given if a train is delayed by 15 minutes or more but check your provider as this may vary. Based on the length of a delay, the company will issue a percentage of compensation.
Delay repay is also applicable for Tube delays too! And, while you’re riding around on the Tube, make sure that any railcards you have are connected to your Oyster card for one third of Tube travel and extra savings!
There are several ways to get the compensation you deserve when a company has treated you badly or provided a faulty service, and your lunch hour is a perfect time to do it. However, it’s really important that you know how to complain and what your legal rights are. This is why your lunch hour is good for research and preparing yourself for the complaining process.To help you on your way we’ve written an article to how to get what you want by complaining.
Use your lunch hour to do something productive, fun and creative and make a little money in the process. Here’s how:
Is there a subject that gets you going? Something you love, or perhaps, more interestingly, something you despise? Be it sport, music, film, or something else entirely. If you can write in a passionate or amusing way there’s every chance that someone will want to read what you have to say. If you set up your own blog or website, you can make money through it with online advertising and sponsorship deals
You can set up your blog with a free service such as WordPress or Blogger, all of which let you set up a blog quickly and easily for nothing! Once you’re set up, there’s an opportunity to make money by introducing advertising. Advertising services like Google Adsense use search technology to target your site with relevant advertising.
This isn’t likely to be a massive earner as you’ll need a fair bit of traffic to your site, but it’s an easy, fun way to make a little extra on the side. Find out how you can make money blogging.
In a similar vein to starting a blog for your musings, if you’re particularly handy with a pencil or a paintbrush you can start a blog for your illustrations. Follow our handy guide to setting up a blog and, with enough self-promotion, you can soon increase your site’s popularity.
Those who are creatively-minded can be inspired by anything, and the chances are you’re just as likely to be productive on your one-hour lunch break as you are when you have oodles of time on your hands.
Once you feel confident enough in your drawing and have gained a bit of a following, sites like Big Cartel and Etsy allow independent sellers (of all kinds, not just artists) to put up prints and more up for sale. If you’re particularly creative you can expand from simple prints and get your work printed on T-shirts, mugs, tote bags – anything really!
Cafe Press is a great site to use, you just simply upload your design and get your merchandise printed to order. Whack it straight on to your Big Cartel or Etsy store and start promoting via your social media channels and blog. Easy!
Many people who are passionate about illustration begin their careers this way, and as their popularity grows, they get spotted by magazines, pop-up art shops and more established stores. So, if drawing is your passion, why not try and make some money from it?
It’s something a lot of us do anyway, but if you’re particularly good at taking photos then you could try selling them on the net. If you have a library of digital photos, you may be able to sell them through an online agency such as Fotolia, 123RF and Getty Images. You get a royalty fee each time a photo of yours sells.
To get an idea of what people like, look at as many sites as you can to get an idea of what sells. All the agencies are different, so see what’s popular on each site to get a good idea. Don’t worry if you’re not particularly creative or arty, sometimes the simplest photos sell the best. Just remember to read all the terms and conditions before you get snapping. Find out more about how to sell your photos.
It might sound too good to be true, but you can actually make money from your everyday routine by shopping online and buying products and getaways through cashback websites. There are plenty of sites around and you’re free to use as many as you like! You should start with the websites that pay you just for signing up as Quidco which gives you £10 just for joining. They also give you money if you refer a friend.
Many of the websites cover well-known stores that most people use for their normal shopping. Don’t forget that you can still use as many sites as you like, so hunt down the ones that feature your favourite shops. Get more information on shopping through cashback sites.
You can get paid to shop, eat out or go for a drink as a mystery shopper! There are quite a few companies that pay for people to test shops, pubs, ticket offices, banks and many more – and then report back on anything from tidiness to customer services. It’s easy to get started – see how with our popular article on mystery shopping.
What better way to spend your lunch hour than clearing out things you don’t need any more, and making money from it? We’ve found some ways to make money from your rubbish.
Use our comparison tool to see which of the many phone recycling companies offer the best price for your model, then follow the simple steps and wait for your cash!
Websites such as RentNotBuy let you advertise pretty much anything you can think of, from video cameras, to baby accessories for free! You can also rent out storage space, such as your cellar, drive or attic for free on Spareground!
If you have a driveway or garage you don’t use, you can also contact ParkLet or JustPark to advertise your space for people needing parking in your area. This could potentially be a big earner if you live near a railway station, stadium, airport or in a big city such as London.
Grab your laptop, head to your favourite coffee shop (free Wi-Fi with a Starbucks card, didn’t you know?) and spend some time making money from the internet. There are all sorts of ways you can make cash on the net that require very little effort and we’ve got the best ways here.
Make between £20 and £50 a month (plus get the chance to win some cash prizes and gifts) with online surveys.
One of the Money Magpies has tried out several online survey sites and has reported back that Toluna is a great choice because it’s really simple to use and tells you how long each survey will take.
Once you’ve signed up to a few sites you can spend ten minutes on your lunch break completing a quick survey and still have time left to eat your sarnie.
NEVER pay to join an online survey site, instead stick to reputable companies like these:
If you like the sound of online surveys make sure you check out our full article right here on the safe way to earn money by taking paid surveys.
For more ways to make some quick cash, visit our make money section.