You’ve heard of the gig economy before — it’s a common way to refer to people who work as freelancers or independent contractors. Gig economy jobs are so popular because they’re an extremely flexible way to make extra money.
It’s no wonder that, according to a study by Upwork, over 59 million Americans are now freelancing. That represents 36% of the nation’s workforce.
If you’re ready to join this growing workforce, we’re breaking down the best gig jobs for 2022.
Get Paid $23/hour (national average) to deliver food in your spare time
Make $1-$3 per survey
Get paid $15-$30 proofreading from the comfort of your home
Make $10-$20/hour delivering groceries
Earn $50-$1,000/month in somewhat passive income
Best for Food Delivery
Best Easy Gig
Best For Remote Work
Best for Grocery Delivery
Best for Creative People
What is the gig economy?
The gig economy is based on work that’s considered freelance, flexible, or temporary. Gig workers typically work for various clients or customers, and many gig jobs are based on apps or platforms.
Gig workers are considered independent contractors, so you’ll be responsible for expenses related to your work and self-employment taxes. This can be a drawback for some people, but the reality is that there are many gigs you can scale into full-time time income.
Stacking gigs is also a really great way to bring in even more extra income. The idea is that you work multiple jobs at once or throughout the year so you always have a way to make money in your downtime. Here’s an example:
- Work as virtual assistant during the day while your kids are in school
- Deliver for DoorDash in the evenings
- Take surveys on Survey Junkie while you’re watching TV
- Rent out your attic on Neighbor for some passive income
This way you diversify your income and never in a tight spot if one gig dries up or becomes less feasible.
Now that you understand the gig economy, let’s dive into the best gig economy jobs for 2022!
Best easy gig work
The following gig jobs are incredibly easy and have virtually no requirements to start. On the flip side, these gigs are pretty low-paying overall, so we recommend stacking them with other gigs on this list and being wise about how you spend your time.
1. Survey Junkie
Survey Junkie is one of the most well-known online survey sites. It’s completely free, and you can make $1-$3 for every survey you complete. Survey Junkie pays in points that convert to cash, and you can cash out with PayPal, gift cards, or bank transfer once you have $5 worth of points.
Surveys are not a high-paying gig at all, but they’re a nice option if you have a little spare time in your day. Think about it like this: you can take a couple of surveys while on your lunch break or watching TV after the kids go to bed.
Survey Junkie Summary
2. Branded Surveys
Branded Surveys is a market research company that pays users to share feedback about various products and services. Like Survey Junkie, you’re paid in points that convert to cash or gift cards, and the surveys pay in points worth $0.50 to $3.
You can cash your points out for PayPal cash, check, bank transfer, or gift card once you have $5 worth of points saved. Branded Surveys also has a loyalty program called Branded Elite that offers bonuses as you complete more surveys.
Branded Surveys Summary
Best driving gigs
The food delivery market has blown up in the past couple of years, and it’s turned into a flexible way to make money in your spare time. The requirements are minimal across these gigs, and you can go from signing up to making money in just a couple of weeks.
Since DoorDash was launched in 2013, it’s grown to become the largest on-demand food delivery service in the U.S. It currently holds more than half of the total market share, meaning customers overwhelmingly choose DoorDash over its competitors, which is great news for gig workers.
Dashers — what DoorDash calls its delivery drivers — get paid $23/hour on average nationwide. You can schedule your hours in advance in the app, or you can “Dash Now” during busy times.
DoorDash has several promotions and driver incentives to help drivers earn more, including:
- Peak Pay: Higher pay when you drive during busy hours.
- Challenges: Bonus pay for completing a specific number of deliveries in a set amount of time.
- NEW DoorDash Gas Rewards Program: DoorDash recently launched a program to give drivers 10% cash back on gas purchases, plus you can qualify for an extra $5-$15 back each week if you drive a certain number of miles.
Instacart is the leading on-demand grocery delivery service. Shoppers for Instacart accept orders in the app, shop for them, and then deliver the groceries to the customer’s home. The app tells you everything from approved substitutions and driving directions.
Shoppers for Instacart make $10-$20 on average, and you can schedule your hours to work whenever you have spare time. This kind of flexibility is why Instacart is one of the best gig jobs right now.
Your pay depends on the size and difficulty of the order, plus how busy the app is. Instacart shows you your estimated earnings for each order, so you can decide if the order is worth your time or not. Instacart encourages customers to tip their shoppers, and you keep 100% of your tips.
Shipt launched back in 2014 as an on-demand grocery delivery service, and it now reaches over 260 grocery stores nationwide. Target acquired Shipt in 2017, and they now primarily use Shipt for same-day deliveries. This has opened up even more opportunities for gig workers.
On average, Shipt Shoppers make $15-$20 per hour. Shoppers are paid based on their commission, which is $5 plus 7.5% of the order amount, and you’ll see this in the app before accepting the order.
Like the other best gig delivery jobs, Shipt lets you schedule your hours in advance, making it a flexible option for all kinds of people.
Best freelancing gigs
Freelancing is quintessential gig work, and according to freelance platform Upwork, approximately 59 million Americans are working as freelancers. The numbers have been increasing since 2014 as more and more people have started working for themselves and contracting out their services. Freelancing can be flexible, scalable, and offer some of the highest-paying gig jobs.
6. Sell digital printables
If you’re the creative type, designing and selling digital printables on Etsy is worth considering. What’s cool about this gig is that you only need to create one digital file per printable, and you can sell them virtually indefinitely. You’re not responsible for manufacturing costs, storing, shipping, and so on.
This is one of the best gig jobs if you have a background in graphic design, and you can make money selling digital products on Etsy, like:
- Planner pages
- Budget or lifestyle trackers
- Wall art
- Printable games
- Business cards
- Party invitations
There’s a fantastic free ebook called the Seasonal Products Secret that outlines printable ideas for each month of the year and how you can capitalize on them. We highly recommend checking this out because you can’t open an Etsy shop until you have a product to list.
You can open your Etsy shop after you’ve created your first digital product and list it in a matter of minutes. Etsy charges a listing fee of $0.20.
Selling Digital Printables Summary
- Pay: $50 to $1,000 per month
- Requirements: Basic design skills and access to software like Canva, InDesign, Photoshop, or Adobe Illustrator
- Learn how to get started with the E-Printables Course
7. Pinterest VA
I know you’re already familiar with Pinterest, but did you know that there’s a need for Pinterest virtual assistants? Pinterest VAs work for online business owners and bloggers, helping them develop and execute marketing strategies on Pinterest.
This is a great gig job for highly organized people who love playing around on Pinterest. And you can make an average of $500/month per client doing things like:
- Creating pins
- Optimizing pins
- Developing a pinning schedule
- Doing keyword research
Pinterest Virtual Assistant Summary
- Pay: Average $500 per month per client
- Requirements: Advanced understanding of the Pinterest platform and basic graphic design skills
- Learn how to get started with the Pinterest VA Course
Blogging easily has the highest earning potential out of any of the gig economy jobs on this list. I started this site seven years ago when I was still a high school band director, and now I run a 7-figure business from my laptop.
That trajectory isn’t guaranteed, and it’s a slow business model overall. But I truly believe that you get out of it what you put into it. You can start a blog and scale it during your lunch hour, after the kids go to bed, on the weekends, and so on.
With blogging, you’re in total control of when you work, how you monetize your site, and what you blog about. I had no idea how life-changing this site would be for me, and my only regret is that I didn’t start sooner.
- Pay: $0-$100,000 per month
- Requirements: Laptop or computer, internet connection, and a blog hosting service, and we recommend Bluehost — you can start a WordPress blog on Bluehost for as little as $2.95 per month
9. Facebook Ad Management
Running Facebook ads for small businesses is simply digital marketing through Facebook, which continues to be one of the best online platforms for small businesses to increase their traffic and visibility.
This is the exact side gig I started after I quit my teaching job to run this site full time. My first client was the jeweler who sold me my wife’s engagement ring. That client led to another, then another, and pretty soon, my side gig was earning me more than my full-time teaching job ever did.
Facebook ad management can be one of the highest paying gig economy jobs because it’s so scalable. You can make $1,000-$1,500/month per client, and it takes approximately 2-3 hours a week to manage ads for one client once you’ve set up their ad system.
Facebook Ad Management Summary
- Pay: $1,000 to $1,500 per month per client
- Requirements: Understanding of how the Facebook ad system works
- Learn how to run Facebook ads with our Facebook Side Hustle Course
If you cringe when someone uses the wrong verb tense or can’t tell the difference between their/there/they’re, proofreading might be one of the best gig jobs for you.
This is an extremely flexible gig, and freelance proofreaders make $15-$30/hour. All you need is an internet connection and a computer or laptop. This makes proofreading a great gig for stay-at-home parents, digital nomads, college students, or anyone looking for remote work.
Proofreaders are responsible for polishing written content for bloggers, content writers, website owners, and more. For people who write for a living, hiring a proofreader saves them time and, ultimately, money.
- Pay: $15 to $30/hour
- Requirements: Spelling, grammar, and punctuation competency
- Learn how to get started with the Proofread Anywhere Course
Bookkeepers are responsible for things like collecting payments, updating financial records, checking records for accuracy, managing payroll, and reimbursing work-related expenses.
Many people confuse accounting and bookkeeping, but bookkeepers don’t need a degree to get started. That difference means this is a gig job that almost anyone can start, and you can earn $30-$40/hour as a freelance bookkeeper.
- Pay: $30 to $40/hour
- Requirements: While not required, a bookkeeping class can teach you the basics and make you a more attractive candidate to your clients
- Learn how to get started with Bookkeeper Launch
Transcriptionists take audio files and convert them into text documents. You can get paid to transcribe podcasts, interviews, web conferences, lectures, or instructional videos.
This is one of the best gig jobs because it can be done remotely, there are virtually zero start-up costs, there are no required skills, and you can earn $15-$30/hour. This isn’t a good gig if you don’t have a quiet workspace because it requires very close listening. Read Online Transcription Jobs for Beginners to learn more.
- Pay: $15 to $30 per hour
- Requirements: Internet access, computer or laptop, and quiet workspace
- Learn how to get started with Transcribe Anywhere
13. Virtual assistance
Technology has caused an explosion of growth in the area of virtual assistance. Things that once had to be done in person can now be done online by someone else entirely. This frees up valuable time for entrepreneurs, online business owners, and full-time freelancers.
I have several virtual assistants working for me, and I can honestly say that growing my blog wouldn’t have been possible without their work.
Virtual assistants make an average of $500/month per client, and they perform a variety of tasks for their clients, including:
- Data entry
- Responding to emails
- Project management
- Blog management
- Preparing reports
- Simple digital marketing tasks
- Content creation
- Event management
- Social media management
This is one of the best gig jobs if you have a background in human resources, administrative assistance, project management, or customer service.
Virtual Assistance Summary
- Pay: $500 per month per client
- Requirements: Internet access, computer or laptop, organizational skills, and strong communication skills
- Learn how to get started with the VA Success course
14. Freelance writing
Freelance writing is a broad field, and there are a growing number of gig economy jobs for freelance writers. The vast majority of what you read in print or online has been written by a freelance writer, including:
- Marketing campaigns
- Blog posts
- Email newsletters
- Online and print articles
- Catalog descriptions
- Ghostwritten books
- Web copy
- Grant writing
- Technical writing
- Content mills
It’s not uncommon for freelance writers to make $1,000/month or more. Writers earn a wide range of rates depending on what kind of writing they’re doing and their level of experience. For example, some new writers earn on the low end of $0.01/word writing for content mills (this is an industry term for sites that focus on quantity and pay very rates). Others get paid $1,000 to write a 2,000-word blog post.
Freelance Writer Summary
- Pay: $1,000 per month average
- Requirements: Internet access, computer or laptop, and strong writing skills
- Learn how to get started with Write Your Way to $1K
15. Online tutoring
Tutoring is surprisingly one of the highest-paying gig jobs — you can make around $30-$60/hour as a subject-specific high school tutor or $45-$100 as an ACT or SAT prep tutor.
As a former high school teacher, I know for a fact that parents are willing to pay good money to help their kids get ahead academically. Parents were always looking for tutors for math, science, foreign language, writing, history, and more.
You can find potential clients by connecting with local schools, advertising your services on social media, or through an online tutoring platform like Wyzant. It’s free to list your services on Wyzant, and they take 20% of your tutoring fee.
Wyzant tutors create a profile that details what subjects they can tutor, qualifications like an academic degree or work experience, preferred grade level to work with, and when you’re available. Prospective parents or students will contact you through Wyzant to set up a tutoring session.
Online Tutoring Summary
- Pay: $30 to $100 per hour
- Requirements: Intermediate to advanced knowledge about a specific subject and the credentials to back it up.
- Get started with Wyzant
16. Web developer
Because more people than ever are working and learning online, web developers are in high demand right now. They are responsible for building and maintaining the technology that supports how we live, work, and learn.
This is one of the best paying gigs because freelance web developers can make anywhere from $40-$80/hour. Learn more in 11 Best Places to Find Freelance Developer Jobs.
Best Rental Gigs
Peer-to-peer renting has gained in popularity over the past few years because it offers consumers a more affordable way to rent vacation homes, cars, RVs, etc. It’s one of the best gig jobs for 2022 because it’s significantly more passive than other ideas on this list. There’s also and increased demand as consumers want less expensive options to traditional rentals.
HyreCar is an online platform where you can list your car, when it’s available, and then rent it out to prescreened delivery and rideshare drivers. Don't worry; HyreCar covers you and your vehicle with up to $1 million in liability insurance and coverage in the event of theft or physical damage.
The average car lists for $35 per day, and HyreCar takes a 15% to 25% commission based on the protection plan you choose.
This is one of the best gig economy jobs for people who are now working remotely and aren’t driving as much. Instead of letting your car just sit, you can rent it out to make some passive income.
- Pay: Earn an average of $35 per day, minus 15% to 25% commission
- Requirements: Vehicle must have 4 doors and comfortably seat a minimum of 4 passengers; be a 2004 model or newer (some cities require vehicles that are a maximum of 10 years old); have in-state car insurance, car insurance, registration, and plates; pass a 19-point Uber/Lyft inspection
- Get started with HyreCar
- Read Review
RVShare is a peer-to-peer RV marketplace where you can rent out your unused recreational vehicles. The idea is that instead of letting it sit unused all year long, why not make a little extra money renting it out?
Here’s what RVShare says you can expect to make from different types of RVs over the course of a year:
- Travel Trailer $22,000
- Class A Motorhome $60,000
- Class C Motorhome $38,000
- Fifth Wheel $22,000
- Class B Camping Van $30,000
- Pop-Up Camper $22,000
- Toy Hauler $22,000
Renting out your RV is a somewhat passive gig because you’ll need to keep your RV cleaned and well maintained throughout the year. RVShare takes a 25% commission on anything rented on its platform. According to the figures above, you would still keep $16,500 if you made $22,000 over the course of the year with your travel trailer.
For your peace of mind, RVShare offers up to $1 million in liability coverage, up to $300,000 in comprehensive and collision coverage based on the value of your RV, and free 24/7 roadside assistance.
Is your garage nearly empty? Is there extra space in your attic or basement? Neighbor is a platform where you can rent out your extra space to people in your area. It’s a modern alternative to traditional storage spaces.
The amount you can make is based on several factors, like the type of space, size, and area. Here are some examples of what Neighbor estimates you can make:
- Garage: Earn between $100-$600 per month
- Driveway: Earn between $50-$150 per month
- Shed: Earn $50-$200 per month
- Parking space: Earn $50-$300 per month
Neighbor is free to join and free to list, but there is a processing fee of 4.9% of the total reservation plus $0.30 per payout. You can rent out any storage space, no matter the size. You can rent out your shed, driveway, carport, closet, unpaved lot, and more.
If you’re concerned about safety and liability, Neighbor offers up to $1 million in general liability protection at no additional costs. They also place restrictions on the types of items that can be stored with a host. This is a great gig job if you’ve got extra space and want to make some passive income.
If you have a pool, listing it on Swimply may be one of the best gig jobs out there. Pools require a lot of maintenance and upkeep, and renting out your pool can cover those costs, plus bring in some extra cash.
Swimply is essentially Airbnb but for pools, and they say you can make up to $10,000 per month sharing your pool by the hour. Swimply takes 15% of any rental charges, and your actual earnings depend on where you’re located, amenities, and demand.
As the host, you create a listing with pictures, amenities (like if you have a hot tub, fountain, pool toys, etc.), and when your pool is available. You can chat with the guests before accepting their reservation so you’re comfortable with the arrangement.
- Pay: Up to $10,000 per month minus 15% service fee
- Requirements: Own your home where the pool is located and have appropriate insurance
- Get started with Swimply
Best local gig jobs
If you don’t want to work online, there are several solid gig jobs for local work. The ideas in this section all require in-person, and most of them have little to zero start-up costs.
21. Babysitter or nanny
Babysitting or nannying is a great gig for students, retirees, or anyone who loves working with kids. Babysitters can make $10-$20/hour depending on where you live and how many kids you’ll be caring for.
If you have any special skills, like CPR certification or fluency in another language, they can be a major draw to parents.
Besides posting your services on social media or reaching out to family and friends, I highly recommend listing your services on Care.com. This platform connects babysitters and nannies with local families.
Babysitter or Nanny Summary
- Pay: $10 to $20 per hour
- Requirements: Patience, experience caring for kids
- Get started with Care.com
22. Dog walking & pet sitting
Whenever my wife and I go out of town, we rely on a pet sitter to come and stay with our dog. He’s not the kind of dog we could leave with just anyone, and it’s been an enormous relief to find the right pet sitter.
We found our dog sitter on Rover, which is an online platform where animal lovers can find gig jobs as pet sitters, dog walkers, cat boarders, and more.
The amount you earn as a pet sitter varies based on where you live, and you can make $30-$70 for an overnight stay or $15-$25 per walk.
Next to using Rover to find jobs, I highly recommend reaching out to family and friends and letting them know about your services — referrals go a long way when it comes to taking care of someone else’s pet.
Dog Walking & Pet Sitting Summary
23. Flea market flipping
Flea market flipping is when you find things for cheap or free and flip them for a profit. You can find your flips at garage sales, flea markets, thrift stores, and even the dumpster.
Surprisingly, this can be one of the highest-paying gig jobs if you know what you’re looking for. Rob and Melissa of Flea Market Flipper made $6,685 in one month, selling their flips on eBay. Here’s a few things they sold that month:
- Commercial total gym, bought for $60 and sold for $850
- Commercial machine belt, bought for $20 and sold for $400
- Wolf cooktop, bought for $75 and sold for $685
- Plumbing valve, found for free and sold for $500
Flea Market Flipping Summary
- Pay: $50-$6,000 per month
- Requirements: Unless you’re finding things for free, you’ll need to invest some of your money and have the time to find things to flip
- Get started with Flea Market Flipper’s Free Workshop
I sound like an old man saying this, but I’ve become very passionate about my yard in the past year. I dream of a nicely trimmed, weed-free, and green lawn.
There are plenty of people like me who will pay good money to have our yards maintained. This gig is more hands-on than many of the other gig economy jobs on this list. It’s very physical work that can involve:
- Trimming bushes
- Raking leaves
- Cleaning gutters
- Shoveling snow
You can advertise your services by passing out flyers in neighborhoods near you. Share your new business venture with your friends and family. Local Facebook groups and Nextdoor may be another good way to advertise.
There are often gigs for electricians, welders, plumbers, carpenters, etc. These jobs take field-specific training, and there’s currently a shortage of workers in these fields and a high need for these skills.
Your pay is dependent on the trade and your level of experience and training, but here are some averages:
- Electricians: $20-$26/hour
- Plumbers: $16-$35/hour
- Welders: $15-$25/hour
- Carpenters: $20-$25/hour
Where to find gig economy jobs?
You can find gig economy jobs in a lot of different places these days. Here’s a round-up of some of the best places to find gig work:
- FlexJobs: This site aggregates listings from other online job boards and matches you with listings based on your skills and experience. FlexJobs is designed to help you save time hunting for work.
- TaskRabbit: You can find one-time gig jobs helping people move, hang pictures, cleaning, organizing, assembling IKEA furniture and more. There’s a one-time fee of $25 to create your account, and you keep 100% of anything you earn on the platform.
- Fiverr: This is a freelancer platform where you can list gigs for as little as $5.
- Upwork: Freelancers create profiles, and clients post job listings explaining what they’re looking for. Then, freelancers submit proposals, and the client can look over the freelancers’ portfolios.
- Guru: This platform is well-suited for freelance tech jobs, especially from highly skilled freelancers.
- Craigslist: Yep, don’t forget to check the Craigslist Jobs or Gigs section. This site has gotten a bad rap in the past, but it’s still a place to find legitimate side jobs.
How much can you make in the gig economy?
It’s entirely possible to earn a full-time income working in the gig economy. Some gig jobs pay hourly while others pay per job or per month. It all depends on the type of gig worker you are, your experience, and even where you’re located.
The final word: What is the best gig job?
There are so many solid options for gig work right now, and the best one for you honestly depends on what you’re capable of and interested in doing. To help you narrow down your choices, here are my top recommendations:
- Best for Food Delivery - DoorDash Driver: Get paid $23/hour while out on delivery, and schedule your hours when it works best for you.
- Best for Remote Work - Proofreading: Make $15-$30/hour proofreading from the comfort of your home.
- Best for Creative People - Selling Digital Printables: Make somewhat passive income creating and selling digital printables on Etsy. You can make $50 to $1,000/month.
- Best Easy Gig Work - Survey Junkie: Surveys don’t pay well compared to most of these gig jobs, but you can make $1-$3/survey in your spare time.
There are a bunch of high-paying gig jobs, including blogging, freelance writing, web development, and skilled labor. With any of these gigs, it’s not uncommon to make $5,000/month or more.
No, most gig jobs don’t offer benefits. This is one of the biggest downsides to gig work, but many side hustles can be started on the side of your day job so you can keep your benefits until you’re making enough to cover them on your own.
Yes, there are dozens of great types of gig jobs, from proofreading, freelance writing, food delivery, web development, and more. It’s quite possible to earn $1,000+ per month with these options.