Christmas is almost here.

Are you excited, dreading it or you couldn’t care less? If you’re anything like me, you are experiencing all three emotions. I’m really looking forward to the food and the Christmas carols. I may have to attend some parties but I’m trying to learn to say no to a few others.

While Christmas is usually a long holiday with lots of activities, it also comes with significant costs and spending.

Well, I have some good news!

There’s something you may not have known or forgotten about Christmas; it is also an ideal time to earn extra money as it presents opportunities that may not be available at other times of the year. It was during this period that I started one of my holiday themed side businesses. Who knows, this may be the beginning of something great for you.

Ready?

Here are 12 ways to make extra money before the Christmas season. I have collated these under three main heads:

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A. SELL A SERVICE
As I mentioned earlier, the Christmas holiday season is usually characterised by loads of parties and other forms of celebrations. The question is what services can you offer during this period. You could consider one or more of these options.

1. Photography
Do you love taking pictures and are you generally good with a camera? This may be the time to make use of your skills.

2. Ride Sharing Services
Do you have a car? You can use your car for taxi services or provide a ride sharing option. You can sign up with your local service. Uber is one of such examples.

3. Errand Services
Sometimes, running errands can be overwhelming. It just seems like you have a million and one things to do before the end of the day and you are constantly in a race against time. The best part is that quite a few people have similar concerns and may be willing to pay for the service.

If you are not sure of what to charge, a quick Google search may help you determine the charges in your area.

4. Party Dj and MC
At some point in my life, I had considered being a Disc Jockey(if only for a few minutes), I liked the idea of selecting the music and determining the tone of the party. If you love the social scene, have a knack for good music, or you have a great sense of humor, you can consider trying these options.

You will likely need some equipment to DJ, but you could rent some of these.

5. Babysitting
I do know that in our clime, people usually expect you to babysit for free but if you love kids and have some time then you should definitely try this option. While there may be some push back because you are charging for this, parents are likely to pay if they trust you and truly care about the safety of their child.

6. Freelancing
Are you good at writing, web design, social media promotion, teaching and all the other possible services? Great! Then you can sell any of these services. There are various online platforms you can sign upto to provide this service. How about Fiverr and Upwork?

It presents the opportunity to work for clients in every part of the world. How exciting!

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B. SELL A PRODUCT

1. Baking
For my fellow cake and pastry lovers, this is the time to make some money with this hobby or favourite past time.
With the hordes of activities and parties, you are likely to get a few opportunities to sell your baked goods.

However, you should also take the time to master your art. Don’t go out there to sell items you wouldn’t buy or you know are not good enough. With baked goods, you can charge a higher price if people can attest to your quality and the aesthetics.

2. Buy and sell Christmas related items
There are quite a number of Christmas themed products, from cards, to Christmas trees and decorations.

You could even consider designing your Christmas cards and printing these to sell. This will generally reduce your initial costs. A few online design and print shops provide this service. You can check out Printivo amongst others.

One drawback with this option is where you don’t sell all that you have before the end of the holiday. This may mean you’re stuck with the items till the next one or you will have to sell them at a huge discount.

3. Buy and sell other items
In addition to holiday themed items, people are going to buy other things from clothing to electronic gadgets and fitness items. Are you able to sell any of these?

The idea is to source for useful and unique items you can buy at a lower price and sell at a higher price.

4. Catering
For every party there must be food and drinks. Are you a secret chef and drinks connoisseur? I wish, I was. With my love for food, this should have been a no-brainer.

Do note that it can be tasking and you have to have good organisational skills to manage not only the waiters but ensure the food is properly distributed.

5. Market your side hustle
Do you have any business ideas or some product or service you will like to pitch? Or have you been avoiding doing anything because you’re afraid that no one will buy or you will be termed a failure?

If so, why not try out your idea during the Christmas period. People are more likely to be receptive to your idea, depending on what it is this period than at any other point.

C. DO IT YOURSELF
I’m a firm believer that money not spent is money saved, which means a growth in our networth.

There is a likelihood that due to the busy nature of this season, you may have a few tasks or activities that you have to get done. You could consider doing some of these yourself rather than retain the services of a third party.

It could be painting, some minor electrical and plumbing work or even carpentry. Have you ever tried fixing curtains by yourself? I’m going to be trying my hand at this very soon.

Bonus Option

Trade by Barter
This is definitely as old as time. It made a lot of sense then and in many ways, it still does.

You could also consider a trade by batter option where you exchange services with friends and family based on need and expertise.

In Closing
I hope you found a few ideas you can implement to earn more money this Christmas. Its all about action this year. Many times, we take so long trying to decide on what to do and when to them. Let this year not be one of those.

Think about your money goals and all you hope to achieve before the end of 2016. This is the time to take those steps if you have not already done so.

Do you have a few more options to earn more? I’m sure you do. Please include these in the comments.

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