8 easy side hustles that you can start in 2022

6 minute read

If the COVID-19 pandemic has taught us one thing, it’s that the ways of how we work have become more flexible than ever.

During the quarter of the infamous Circuit Breaker ‘lockdown’, Singapore recorded 8,130 retrenchments. For the first time, many workers in once-thriving industries lost their jobs and/or suffered pay cuts. In order to diversify income streams, many people took up a “side hustle”, or a second job, to earn extra money. Examples include e-commerce, doing food deliveries and others.

If you’re interested to learn more, keep reading.


Why you should consider a side hustle

Even if you are not worried about employment or income loss, the financial benefits of having one are clear. A side hustle can help provide a little more money to help grow your savings and pay down debts. But on top of that, having a side hustle could also potentially be a way for you to pursue your interests and hone existing skills.

While a side hustle does not necessarily need to be a full-fledged business, think of them as personal projects that encourage personal growth and development while sparking entrepreneurial creativity. It is also a great way to test the waters for a business idea that could form the basis of a potential business in the future. Plus, with more employers adopting remote working and hybrid arrangements, many of us have a lot more spare time. The hours previously spent on long commutes to and from offices can now be used for more productive means —like a side hustle!

Psst, if you’re looking for some ways to maximize your productivity while working from home, here are some tips from us!

Tips and important things to note before taking on a side hustle

But before you dive into starting your entrepreneurial journey, here are some important things to consider and think about.

First and foremost, you should think about what your objective is. The answer to these questions will help you to set your expectations, and plan how much time and resources to devote to your side hustle. Are you taking on a side hustle for some extra cash on side, or do you hope to one day turn it into your day job? If your goal is the former, it is important to be disciplined with your time, and never let your side hustle affect your full-time job.

You should also consider whether your priority is

  • To earn money,
  • To pursue a hobby
  • To develop specific skills.

If it’s all about the dollars and cents, then you might want to research what is the most profitable side hustle job you can manage, instead of, say, looking for a fun side hustle that you enjoy.

If you’re not entirely sure what you hope to achieve from your side hustle yet, it’s best to start small and keep investments minimal.

8 side hustles in Singapore

The best side hustle jobs for you really depends on your priorities and unique skills. Here are some of the more popular side hustle ideas in Singapore.

1. eCommerce gig

The brick-and-mortar retail industry has been declining for the past decade, with e-commerce taking over. It’s a win-win all around: companies no longer need to spend copious amounts on rental, and consumers get to shop with utmost convenience

How much you can earn in e-commerce is very subjective, but there is definitely potential here. As of 2021, researchers estimate Singapore’s e-commerce market to be valued at US$5.9 billion, and forecast it to rise to US$10 billion by 2026. There are over 3 million e-commerce users in Singapore, and we have the highest basket size of S$67.40 in the Southeast Asia region.

Thinking of entering the eCommerce space? We’ve got you covered. Dive deeper into our guide on starting an epic eCommerce here!

2. Dropshipping

If you don’t have an actual product to sell, not to worry! You can also consider what is known as dropshipping.

Dropshipping is when you play the middleman between the retailer and the consumers. The benefit of the dropshipping model is that you don’t actually hold the inventory of products, which means you eliminate any risk that goes along with it too.

Similar to e-commerce, there is a wealth of opportunity in this industry. The global dropshipping market size was already valued at US$102.2 billion in 2018, and is forecasted to register a compounded annual growth rate of 28.8% from 2019 to 2025. In particular, the same study anticipates the largest growth in segments such as fashion, food and personal care.

Are you ready to start your business today?

3. Food delivery rider

Not only do most of us shop for clothes and groceries online, but we order food online too! The rise of food delivery apps like GrabFood, Deliveroo and FoodPanda has created countless opportunities for delivery staff.

The job is quite simple: you receive an order, head to the restaurant to pick it up, and deliver it to the hungry customers.

Most food delivery riders are paid per delivery (not by the hour). In 2020, when food deliveries were at its peak popularity, riders reportedly earned as much as $6.50 to $7.50 per delivery. As a broader, industry-wide estimate, you can earn about $15 for every hour of your time as a food delivery rider.

The biggest catch for this side hustle is that you need a vehicle to be most efficient at doing deliveries. You can cycle as well, but that is much slower — and a lot more tiring!

4. Private hire driver

These days, private hire car services like Grab and Gojek provide a cheaper alternative to taxis in Singapore. So, if you know how to drive, this is a side hustle to consider.

In addition, you will also need a Private Hire Car Driver’s Vocational Licence (PDVL). To be eligible, you must be at least 30 years old, a Singapore citizen, and have had your class 3 or 3A license for at least 1 year. The PDVL course costs about $200, but is SkillsFuture claimable.

Another perk of this side hustle is that you are able to rent a vehicle. If you don’t already have your own, you can rent one from the company. You may use the car for your personal errands too, but do note that if you rent a car, you may have to work more hours to offset the rental fees.

According to Grab’s income calculator, if you work part-time (3 hours per day) for a week, you can earn around $617.

5. Freelance writing

If you have a flair for the written word, then good news — there is high demand for your skills! Many brands turn to content marketing to raise awareness for their services and achieve other business goals. How they do this is by producing educational and/or engaging articles and sharing them with interested consumers.

However, for most companies, it is not feasible to have a large editorial team. They more likely have a content manager, and outsource the bulk of their content writing to freelance writers.

Freelance writers typically charge between S$250 to S$400 per article. If you have a niche and are particularly knowledgeable about the topic in question (e.g., finance), you can charge more.

Can’t write to save your life? Don’t worry, you can actually freelance by offering other skills too. For example, you can also do graphic design, give music lessons or do online tutoring on a freelance basis.

6. Affiliate marketing

Many times, those who enjoy writing already have their own website and/or personal blogs where they produce their own content. In this case, you might not want to spend your time writing on a freelance basis for other brands. Instead, you can be an affiliate marketer.

Although freelance writing is a more profitable side hustle, you can still monetize your content through channels like affiliate marketing. Affiliate marketing is when a brand pays you money for referring customers to them. A partnership method is through linking relevant products on your content.

For example, if you are passionate about sports and write articles about it, you can consider featuring fitness equipment or gym wear in your articles. For this to be sufficiently profitable, however, you probably need a sizable following and good website traffic. Most brands ask for at least 10,000 page views per month.

Psst.. did you know you could earn commission from being a Sleek affiliate partner? Find out more here.

7. Livestreaming

Livestreaming through Instagram, Facebook and TikTok is the newest way to earn money through social media. Many influencers with faithful followings use this channel to sell products online and earn money through brand sponsorships.

A type of e-commerce, selling products directly through social media is known as social commerce. A popular example is Facebook auctions, whereby a host displays products during a live session, and entertains bids for the products.

Like affiliate marketing, for livestreaming to be a profitable side hustle, you will need a strong following. There should already be an initial awareness of your brand and product.

8. Test websites and do surveys

All the above seem too difficult? Here’s our final (and also the easiest) recommendation: website testing and paid surveys.

With more companies pumping resources into improving their brands’ user experience, there is an opportunity to earn easy money by simply testing websites and doing surveys. On platforms like user testing, you can earn about S$10 for scrolling through websites and performing tasks to test specific functions on the site.

Very often, all you need is a laptop, a stable internet connection, and a microphone – things we likely already use for our day jobs!

Whatever side hustle you intend to try, we wish you all the best. Who knows? Perhaps one day you may turn it into a small business of your very own. When that day comes, be sure to check out Sleek’s digital solutions for businesses. Learn more here.

Before we go!

Do check out the legal requirements for your business model for each of your side hustles (e.g. starting a dropshipping business), as they will differ.  

For example, an online business must display its terms and conditions on its website for customers to clearly see. There are also strict regulations on handling and protecting the personal data you collect from your visitors and customers.

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