Days when teenagers had to drop newspapers to earn extra money or engage in laborious work are history. Instead, the Internet has opened new, lucrative vistas for teens of 13+ years to earn money.
Understandably, some tasks you perform as teenager would depend upon local labor laws. Taking a legit work to make money as a teenager is thus imperative.
Understanding Labor Laws
American labor laws stipulate, any person of 14 years age and above can take non-agricultural work. However, there are some limitations on the number of hours a teenager under 16 can work, according to the US Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA).
However, some American states follow different laws and not necessarily FLSA. You can find a lot of information about legit work by visiting website of US Department of Labor. Should you have further doubts, approach the nearest labor department office for clarifications.
Additionally, making money as teenager does not necessarily exempt you from paying Income Tax. Refer to Internal Revenue Service guidelines to find if you have to pay taxes and available exemptions.
Making Money as Teenager
Broadly speaking, there are three distinct ways you can make money as teenager. Considering you legally qualify for work, here are some excellent ways to make money as teenager.
- Working Full time
- Part-time or summer jobs
- Campus based jobs
Working part-time or full time is your choice and depends upon prevailing labor laws of the state. And provided the current era of internet, making money online has turn out to be the easiest and convenient option for teens.
1. Virtual Assistant (Median Pay $15.57/ hour)
Virtual Assistant or VA provides assorted services, usually from a remote location like home or college dorm to clients. There are multitude of tasks you can perform as VA and make money online or offline.
Virtual Assistant jobs can be the best suitable jobs for teens as it allows you to work from home or from any desired location provided same has been approved by the client.
This is a job where you can put skills to best use. VA can perform any tasks from administrative to creative. Hence, your skills will find several takers.
2. Email Marketer (Median Pay US $15.09/ hour)
Working as email marketer for a few hours daily can help make some good money as a teenager.
Tasks include sending emails with promotional material such as advertisements and promotional offers to new and existing clients of a business.
You will also send a personalized email thanking the sender. Further, you have to sort emails and forward relevant ones to the employer. If you want to know more about email marketing then read here.
3. Social Media Manager (Median Pay US $15.30/ hour)
If you love Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and Pinterest among others, look for jobs as social media manager. Of course you need to have some skills to manage social media.
You will post content provided by employer on Facebook, Twitter and other social media platforms.
Other tasks include responding to comments and controlling damage caused by any adverse remarks from followers of the employer’s Facebook and other pages.
4. Blogger (Median Pay $20/ hour)
Have excellent writing skills and are passionate about something? Work as blogger. Nowadays, news websites and other businesses employ part-time bloggers to write on variety of subjects ranging from best smartphones in the market to latest movies.
After some experience, you can open your own blog for free through any blogging websites or buy your own unique domain name and hosting to post blogs.
Bloggers also make money through affiliate marketing and ads displayed by Google AdSense. Media houses also offer internships for aspiring bloggers.
5. Content Writer (Median Pay US $17.64/ hour)
This is also a great way to make money as a teenager, if you possess great writing skills. Almost every business and blogger requires content for their website.
You will be given a topic or theme to write about. Task involves researching into the subject and writing an article of the length desired by your client.
Content writing is a profession in itself and you can develop it during teens. This is also one of the best option to make money from home if you like writing being at home.
6. YouTube Channel (Unlimited Income)
Felix Arvid Ulf Kjellberg, now about 28 years, has estimated net worth of US $20 million.
He is better known as PewDiePie and owns an eponymous YouTube channel that contains videos of Minecraft and other games.
PewDiePie did not become rich overnight: He started his YouTube channel providing reviews of Minecraft and other games as teenager.
Armed with a good camera, including the one on your smartphone, it is possible to make excellent videos about something you are very passionate about. Opening a YouTube channel is free.
Google displays ads before, during or after your videos and on the side. You get paid by Google for ads shown in your videos and if anyone clicks on those displayed on the side.
7. Babysitting (Median Pay $13.44/ hour)
You can make ample money by babysitting for a few hours daily. There are two ways to babysit: one is by advertising your services on Craigslist or any popular classifieds website in your area.
Other is by signing-up with a babysitting service provider in your locality. The median rate per hour indicated is for single child.
The rate goes up if you have to babysit more children of a family, while parents are outside home for any reason.
8. Pet Care (Median Pay $15.13/ hour)
If you are fond of dogs, pet sitting and walking dogs is a top way to make money as a teenager. Indeed, it is possible to provide pet care services within your locality.
Millions of adults also earn extra income by working an hour or so as pet sitters or by walking dogs. As teenager, you too can cash on this boom.
Work involves spending a few hours with a pet dog and sometimes cats at your client’s home. Or, walking one or more dogs during free time.
9. Tutoring (Median Pay $14/hour)
You can make money as teenager by tutoring junior students. This is an excellent home-based venture if you are proficient in some subjects.
Simply spread the word around at school and through online classifieds websites including Craigslist that you are available for tutoring juniors in one or more subject.
You can charge per hour or per week, depending upon what you are teaching and number of students.
10. Online Surveys (Median Pay $5 to $10/hour)
Online surveys will definitely not make you rich. But this is very simple online jobs for teens to earn extra income by registering at one or more online survey websites.
They offer cash, shopping vouchers and other incentives for completing online surveys.
Surely you would be well versed in certain topics. Select only topics of your interest and those of which you have great deal of info.
Online survey website also provide avenues to earn more through referral programs, playing games, watching videos and other simple tasks. You can do online surveys from computer or smartphone.
11. Run Errands (Median Pay $18/hour)
Rates can vary according to your locality, but on average, a teenager makes about $18 per hour for running errands of various types.
These can include fetching prescription medicines from pharmacy, shopping for neighbors at supermarket, sending or collecting mails for someone, delivering personal packages and motley other jobs.
You can run errands for people in your locality or outside, depending upon ease of access. Running multiple errands for different people at the same time helps you to make money as a teenager while saving time and effort.
12. Work at Supermarkets (Median Pay $8/ hour)
Working at supermarkets may not sound very glamorous but you can earn as much as $40 per day by working for four to five hours during spare time.
Supermarkets need various staff including cashiers or staff that stock shelves with products, surveillance staff and others. Ask around supermarkets and stores in your area: they would definitely require some staff.
Often, supermarkets also give their staff some discount as incentives, should you buy something. You can make as much as $20 per hour by working off-peak hours- meaning from late night to mid-morning. But this means compromising on sleep.
13. Restaurant Crew (Median Pay $8.46/ hour)
McDonald’s pays average $8.46 per hour for part-time teenage restaurant crew. Working for a large restaurant chain is good way to make money as teenager.
If you work as delivery staff, it is possible to earn more by tips from customers. Generally, every restaurant- small or large- will require part-time staff at various positions.
Look for these jobs to make money as a teenager during free hours. However, refer to labor laws since some jobs at restaurants are not permissible for teenagers below 18 years.
14. Lifeguard (Median Pay $9.36/hour)
Love swimming or watersports? Working as lifeguard at pools and other popular venues where people go for a swim can fetch you quite a good amount of money. Lifeguards are also required at poolside parties hosted at clubs and private residences.
In such cases, you earn more money. Before you consider working as lifeguard, find free or cheap lifeguard courses in your area.
Generally, American Red Cross conducts free or highly subsidized short courses where you learn lifesaving techniques including Cardio Pulmonary Resuscitation (CPR) and other skills.
Certified lifeguards earn phenomenally more- about $20 per hour. Teenagers above 13 years age can undergo these courses.
15. Find Odd Tasks ($5 to $25)
You can find a lot of odd tasks online by registering at Fiverr, Craigslist, Taskrabbit and Zaarly among other websites. For tasks through Fiverr, you can charge only $5.
However for providing add-on services to the same client, it is possible to earn more. Other websites do not have such rules.
Therefore, it is better to register on Fiverr and other reputed websites where you can get odd tasks to make money as a teenager. Registering on many websites ensures continuity of income.
16. Gardening (Median Pay $14.72/ hour)
Mowing lawns, trimming plants, weeding, spraying pesticides, adding fertilizer and garden soil and performing other gardening tasks can earn you a cool $14.72 per hour.
You can begin by spreading word among neighbors that you can assist in gardening. It is also possible to get gardening work in your city by posting online on various classifieds websites popular in the area.
Working part-time at gardens of neighbors or other clients can be a very delightful experience to make money as teenager.
17. Movie Theatres (Median Pay $12.56/ hour)
Movie theatres require lots of part-timers, especially during evening hours and holiday seasons. They need ticketing crew, line management staff, ushers and lots more.
Usually, a movie theatre will prominently display an ad on its premises about such staff needs. Alternatively, you can approach the theatre management and ask for work.
Given the number of movies that are shown daily at Multiplexes, you will definitely find jobs. While you make money as a teen, working at movie theatre can also entitle you to a free ticket occasionally.
Working at movie theatres is part-time job that is much sought by teenagers. You may have to work in shifts, depending upon movie schedules and rush hours.
18. Golf Caddy (Median Pay $25/ hour)
Teenage golf caddies make whopping $25 to $30 per hour. This means, carrying two golf bags for players over one loop of 18 holes earns as much as $150 in a single day.
And you need not work the entire day since nobody plays or lasts that long on a golf course. You can earn a lot more than this amount through tips.
Generally, golfers come from very high income bracket. They pay tips not merely for your services but also to impress others around.
Enquire at your nearest golf course for jobs as part-time caddy. You make money as a teenager and also make excellent contacts as golf caddy.
19. Camp Counselor (Median Pay $13.61/ hour)
For teenagers that love adventures and other outdoor activities, it is possible to make money by working part-time as camp counselor. Schools and camping companies conduct summer, winter and various other camps during holiday season.
They look for teenagers that can accompany younger children and counsel them where required. You will be supervised by a qualified and skilled counsellor that will generally accompany campers.
Working as camp counselor enables you to make good money as teenager and enjoy your favorite outdoor activity too.
20. Sell Stock Photos (Unlimited Income)
Selling photographs has never been easier. Nowadays, several reputed websites actually help you to sell photos online. Simply click excellent pictures with your smartphone or, if lucky, a good quality digital camera.
To find what types of pictures sell online, visit websites like Shutterstock, iStockPhoto and Canva, among others. You will find detailed guidelines on the type of pictures that are hot and expected prices.
If you have old pictures of places or things at home, take high resolution scans and put them up for sale on any reputed stock photo website.
As teenager, you can make unlimited money by selling stock photos. Only your creativity in taking pictures matter.
21. Companion for Elderly (Median Pay $11.74/ hour)
Senior citizens, especially those afflicted by limited mobility or loneliness are willing to pay for company. You can sign-up with any caregiver agency or look for such part-time jobs online.
Additionally, you can also offer companionship services for the elderly through various classifieds websites. Companionship of elderly is different from traditional caregiving.
As companion, you will accompany the senior citizen, assist in correspondence or keep them entertained.
Occasionally, you may have to remind them to take medication and meals. The job however requires high degree of patience since elderly people can at times get very demanding and agitated.
22. Video Editing (Median Pay $9.14/ hour)
Professional video editors make up to $60 per hour. However, you too can make money as teen by becoming an amateur video editor.
Unlike professional editors, you need not invest in expensive software and hardware to edit videos. Instead, freeware available off the Internet and with your software bundle is more than sufficient.
You can edit videos for YouTubers, videographers that shoot during weddings and other special occasions and amateur movie makers. As teenager, this is a very glamorous job and pays you well.
You will need a PC and some basic video editing skills to make money. Once you have adequate experience, hourly median pay shoots up to $15 per hour.
23. Micro Tasking (Median Pay $9/ hour)
Amazon Mechanical Turk, a division of the eponymous global online retailer had nearly 2,700 women and men complete some 3.8 million small tasks or micro tasks during calendar year 2017.
Tasks involve anything from proofreading articles to detect spelling, grammatical and punctuation errors to removing duplicate content or misleading pictures from a client’s website.
Micro tasking provides great flexibility in work hours. Hence, you can perform these tasks when free provided you meet stipulated deadlines.
24. Music X-Ray (Median Income $5 per day)
Musicxray is a website and app that actually pays you a few cents to listen to music. You have to register on Musicxray website to make money as teenager.
Also download Musicxray app on your smartphone. The company pays average 10 cents for every streaming song you listen. Should you not like a song and switch to another after a few minutes, earnings are not affected.
However, making money as teenager from Musicxray can prove rather slow. To earn $5, you need to listen to 50 songs- something that takes a lot of time. Also, the music you receive may not be to your likings.
25. Mystery Shopper (Median Pay $16.36/ hour)
You need to be at least 18 years old to become a mystery shopper in America. Mystery shopping does not mean you go shopping for mysterious, supernatural or paranormal stuff. Instead, it is a down to the earth part time job with reputed market research companies.
As mystery shopper, you have to visit stores, malls, boutiques, showrooms, banks, offices and other places specified by the client. You will make some purchase or transactions at these places.
However, you need to keep eyes and ears open for various details such as ambience of the place, staff behavior, selection of products, visibility of brands, ease of use and many other parameters.
Usually, the market research company allows you to keep the stuff bought as mystery shopper. And they also pay for your efforts. This is an amazing way to make money as a teenager since most people in this age group enjoy shopping.
Remember, you need to write an honest review of your experience while conducting a transaction or shopping to remain with the market research company. Fake reviews gets you disqualified instantly.
As we can see, it is fairly easy to make money as a teenager, with some skills and effort. How much money you make depends on number of hours spent on a part-time job.
Since such sources of income are not steady, most teenagers make money by signing up for more than one job. This helps to make more money and ensures your earnings continue round the year.
Majority of part time work we mention here are legit. However, we strongly recommend you to check with the local labor department for any restrictions or regulations and being to make money as a teenager.