Senior works on the laptopinsta_photos /

Side hustles are for everyone these days. From the single father driving Uber for extra income to the single mother writing novels while the kids are in school, the opportunities to make extra money have never been greater.

A 2019 study by Northwest Mutual found that nearly half of employed adults are likely to work past retirement age because they should have saved more money on retirement plans for a comfortable third act.

If you're among them, doing a side business can help fund your favorite hobby or save up for a vacation to see the world.

The problem is that a lot of sideline jobs are youth oriented. They require limitless energy, excellent night vision, or availability when you would rather be home.

But there are some that work well for people of retirement age and some that seem particularly suitable for retirees. Here are our favorites.

1. Teach ESL online

Elderly man giving class online.Agency photographer /

You speak English. Much of the world wants to speak English. The rise of the Internet in developing countries has expanded the market for online teaching in the world's leading business language.

The gig works like this. You are enrolling in one or more online English as a Second Language (ESL) schools such as Whales English or Englishhunt. People from all over the world can choose whether to teach classes, small groups, or individuals a language that they will have mastered their entire life.

You choose your hours and availability. In some cases, you can set your hourly rate by only accepting performances that pay a certain amount or higher.


  • Very flexible working hours
  • Little to no prerequisite work
  • Meet people from all over the world


  • Requires above average computer skills
  • You may need to update your computer
  • Some platforms are fraudulent so do your research beforehand

The sweet spot

While planning your next international vacation, you can book courses teaching people from your final destination. Bring the adults out for a beer or host a live session with kids at a local park. Travel never gets better.

2. Sell your services on Fiverr

Happy senior getting income tax breakburitora / is an online marketplace where people sell their skills for short term appearances. Anything you can remotely deliver online is for sale as long as it isn't pornography or a crime.

One person even made about $ 2,000 by offering to insult people on social media for $ 5 per wisecrack.

It's easy to set up an account on the Fiverr platform to sell what you do best on your terms and schedule. You can accept work that you enjoy and reject tasks that you do not like.


  • Very flexible working hours
  • Fast payment cycles
  • Whatever your skill level, there is a chance that you can sell it.


  • You compete with people from developing countries with low payment requirements.
  • Promoting and maintaining a successful profile takes unpaid work.

The sweet spot

Fiverr's new program, Fiverr Pro, distinguishes seasoned professionals who charge professional tariffs from casual sellers who have a side appearance.

If you can piggyback your career and qualify, you can make serious money on your terms and schedule.

3. Rent your seat on Airbnb

Elderly woman counting cashPixel-Shot /

Airbnb and its competitors let individuals rent rooms, guest houses, replacement apartments and houses to travelers who are not looking for a hotel.

You can list a place to sleep on the online platform and do the booking and payment for you.

Many retirees shrink once their children have left the house, but they have unused space to work if you still have those old bedrooms. This works well for summer homes, beach houses, or hunting cabins that you've set up over the years.


  • Little work if you don't make money.
  • Uses resources you already have available.
  • The platform processes the payment.


  • One lousy guest can create a terrible situation.
  • Preparing and cleaning the room can be problematic.
  • High season is likely when you plan to travel.

The sweet spot
By targeting international travelers in your listing, you will meet people from all over the world and help them find out what is great about your hometown.

If you are going to travel to their hometown in a couple of years, be sure to have dinner with them.

4. Retail arbitrage

Couple movesstockfour /

Every day people sell items on online exchanges like eBay and Craigslist without knowing the full value of what they have.

More often than not, they sell many things with treasures buried under them. Thrift stores regularly stock vintage or slightly worn items that can be restored or repaired and sold for a profit.

Regardless of what expertise you have acquired in your career or hobbies, you can judge the trash by the treasures of this market.

Buy cheap, spruce up, sell high, and repeat. It's not hard to make a little extra cash, and it's surprisingly easy to turn it into a full-time income in some niches.

  • Benefit from your existing specialist knowledge.
  • Allows you to be intensely engaged in a favorite hobby.


  • Higher risk as you buy to specification.
  • Requires sales skills as well as your hobby or career knowledge.
  • Requires start-up capital.

The sweet spot
Once you've established yourself, you can use this sideline as an excuse to attend the hobby conventions and trade shows that you never had time for during your work – and you can write them off as a business expense!

5. Drive the school bus

Wavebreakmedia /

When most of us went to school, the typical bus driver was a different animal. He – it was almost always a he – would have been happy among the sweathogs of "Welcome Back, Kotter".

He had suspiciously long hair, little chance of a full-time job, and was probably glad employer drug tests were a decade or two away.

That is no longer the case. Most school districts are actively looking for retirees to help drive the little ones from home to class and back again. In many cases, they have fewer applicants than they need. So if you have a clean balance sheet and are missing your grandchildren, this is a once in a lifetime opportunity.

  • Spending time with children
  • Regular but part-time work
  • Strong job market
  • Summer off


  • Requires a CDL that costs money
  • Set hours with limited flexibility
  • Some children can be difficult to handle

The sweet spot
When you get on the excursion driver list, get the kids to their destination from school. Then you get paid to sit in the sun and read a book.

6. International house sitting

An elderly black man is using a smartphoneWavebreakmedia /

This sideline does not generate income, but it can save you thousands on every vacation. When wealthy people go on vacation in other countries, many house dwellers pay to watch over their homes and take care of their pets and plants. Others let travelers stay free in exchange for these services.

You can be one of those travelers staying in Singapore, Paris or Buenos Aires instead of paying for a hotel room. Since even a week in a good hotel can cost more than $ 2,000, the savings can be equivalent to making money with a more traditional side business.

  • You can travel to exotic places.
  • No money changes hands so there are no taxes to worry about.
  • Many hosts can make great recommendations for local attractions and restaurants.


  • Houses do not have room service.
  • You have responsibilities when you travel.

The sweet spot
A growing trend in this sense is home swapping, where you live with one person and they live with you. This creates additional trust as you both look out for each other and build a closer relationship with your host.

7. Local tour guide

Retirees abroadTeodorLazarev /

During each tourist season, museums, private companies, and city governments offer guided tours of various attractions in your hometown, even if you live in a relatively small town. These jobs are rarely full-time and tend to attract the kind of gig workers that a retiree with a strong resume can easily attract to a job.

When you get it, spend a few hours on the days when you want to tell people what you love in the place where you have lived for a long time.

Tours can last from just an hour to most of the day depending on where you work and what your plans are. And in bigger cities you can find one for almost anything you find interesting.

  • part time jobs
  • Meet new people from all over the world
  • Find out more about where you live


  • Hours are usually inflexible
  • Not for someone who doesn't like speaking publicly

The sweet spot
Many tour operators now offer food tours where you can meet the owners of great restaurants and bars in your town and often sample their wares.

Even if you don't get free samples, this is a great way to find the best new restaurants and bars in town.

8. Teach a class

A senior executive checks his laptopStockLite /

By the time a person reaches retirement age, they will have acquired some skills.

Some were part of your job that you never want to do again. Others were things that you enjoyed learning and mastering, either on the clock or in your spare time. Thousands of people would love to learn what they already know and are going to pay for the privilege.

Most cities have community centers, senior centers, study attachments, and similar facilities where you can personally teach the things you do best.

Or, you can take the course online through social media, YouTube, or any other online learning format and teach people from all over the world.

  • You keep doing what you know and love best.
  • Very flexible working hours
  • Most people learn more about things when they teach them.


  • You compete with people from developing countries with low payment requirements.
  • Promoting and maintaining a successful profile takes unpaid work.

The sweet spot
Once your classes have enough participants, consider taking a world tour. Offer to teach a private lesson in exchange for two nights in a guest room and a personally guided tour of your host's favorite city.

9. Online tutoring

LTim /

This option is a cross between online teaching from ESL and teaching a class as described above. Online tutoring platforms like Wize and TutorMe connect students who need homework or help with exam preparation with adults who are experts in those subjects.

Even if you have no teaching knowledge or special training, many of these students are young enough that your basic understanding exceeds their needs.

It just takes time and patience to show them what you have learned. The platforms do the booking and payment, so you just sign up and help someone learn.

  • Very flexible working hours
  • Meet and help interesting people.


  • They often compete with PhD students, which drives the hourly rates down.
  • You may need to update your computer equipment.

The sweet spot
Similar to online ESL courses, you will make relationships with interesting people. When you go on vacation, you can meet them in person and get a free tour guide for the afternoon, evening, or all day.

Final thought: advice

Consultantfizkes /

Advice from your old career doesn't really belong on the list, but it is still worth a mention. It is not for everyone because many retirees stop working for good reasons. You are fed up with that old career and don't want to spend extra time on it.

However, if you are not tired, you have the expertise, experience and contacts. It's not difficult to set up a business advising small business owners, coaching would-be CEOs, or helping companies optimize their mojo in what has had a great career.

Consultants are usually paid far more per hour than employees. So you can earn what you worked part-time.

Everything that is said to run a consulting company requires your own work and expertise. That is a topic for another article.

Disclosure: The information you read here is always objective. However, sometimes we get compensation for clicking links in our stories.


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