The Rise of the Student Side Hustle

  • Most popular student side hustles for uni students include Bitcoin investments and online gaming
  • A fifth are being paid to review products online and one in eight are monetising their social media channels
  • Health-conscious students are also regularly cooking from scratch (45%) and meditating (18%) as well as living in properties with a gym (29%), pool (11%) and roof terraces (11%)

University students are studying for an average of 20 hours a week and over half (55%) earn money through a bespoke “side hustle*”, new research into changing student habits today reveals.

The poll of 1,000 university students carried out by uncovers that today’s students are using the internet to their advantage, with more than one in eight (14%)making money from their social media feeds with adverts or brands paying them for sponsored posts and 21 per cent earning income from online gaming. Students are also making conscious health and well-being choices ranging from regularly cooking from scratch (45%) to frequently meditating (18%).

More than a sixth of university students (18%) are making money from BitCoin investments, and one in ten have also earned income from being paid to blog for brands or companies (10%). Other money-making side hustles include reviewing products online (21%), making or repurposing clothing and re-selling them (18%) and online tutoring (20%).

The study also revealed that over two thirds(64%) of student side hustles are based online and can be done without even needing to leave their accommodation, with one in five students making between £400 – £599 on average per month. Overall, they are making on average£3,444 per year from their hustle. An additional fourteen per cent of university students also have another job as well as their entrepreneurial side hustle.

The research into student habits today shows nine in ten (91%) of those surveyed consider themselves as health conscious with half (53%) exercising regularly and a quarter (26%) regularly eating veggie or vegan meals.

Two in five (40%) of those surveyed put their mental health as a priority and a third (34%) agreed that they have found their mental health is something they need to focus on even more now than they did before they attended university. With this in mind, students are journaling (16%) to lift their mood, tracking their sleep (27%) and using wellness apps (21%) as well as volunteering for charities or their local community (16%).

Choosing accommodation that enables students to live a physically and mentally healthier life is also a priority, with respondents citing their current accommodation includes a gym (29%), pool (11%) and cinema room (18%). Fifteen per cent of those university students surveyed also have access to a roof terrace for extra outdoor space.

Dan Baker, General Manager for commented on the research “It’s fantastic to see that students are being entrepreneurial and embracing side hustles to earn money in ways which fit around their studies at university. The passion and drive of students to access higher education is great to see, and we have first-hand seen a steady demand from students looking for student accommodation throughout the pandemic. The focus on wellbeing can be seen in the demand for properties that provide a wide range of facilities – such as communal spaces and gyms – as they look to balance their learning and personal lives.”

The university pupils polled also had some advice for those applying to university in the future, with a third (34%) recommending thinking about student accommodation as early as possible and also ensuring you have a cleaning rota in your student digs (30%). A further 38 per cent also said that a top tip is to not be afraid to live with people you don’t know, as it can turn out really well.