Do you find yourself short on cash for the weekend?
Tapped out of things you can sell and odd jobs you can offer your neighbors?
Have you tried renting yourself out, testing beer or selling whale vomit?
If not, you haven’t tried everything.
Sometimes you have to get creative to put a little extra money in your pocket. If you’re coming up dry, I’ve found 21 new, weird ways to make money — especially for guys.
Next time you find yourself short on cash, give one of these a shot:
1. Become a Test Subject for NASA
Finally, an excuse to lay in bed and watch football all day!
The folks over at NASA are paying $5,000 per month to participants in their bed rest study. It lasts for 87 days and is designed to help them research the effects of zero gravity space travel on the human body.
The study takes place at the Johnson Space Center in Houston, Texas. In addition to this being a cool way to help the NASA program, this study could fatten your bank account by more than $15,000.
Here’s the full run-down.
2. Help Google
There are a number of companies, including Google, that will pay you to install their app on your cell phone. And they’ll pay you for every month you keep them installed.
The apps collect data from your cell phone and help companies better understand web and mobile usage better — such as what times of day people browse, how long they stay on websites and use apps, and what types of sites and apps are popular (or not).
Here are my favorites (install all of them and earn $400/year or more):
– SavvyConnect – You can earn $5 per device (Phone, Tablet, Computer) for each month SavvyConnect is installed. That is a total of up to a total of $180 per year to help rank the most popular sites and apps. Make sure you keep installed at least a month to get your 1st $5 per device.
– MobileExpressions for iPhones – This one can only be downloaded on iPhones. After you’ve installed it for one week, you get to play an instant rewards game for a prize (everyone wins something). I won a $25 Amazon gift card, but some of the other prizes include iPads & Samsung TVs.
– Smart Panel – This panel is open to everyone and once you’ve downloaded the app, they will give you $5. If you keep it installed for at least two weeks, you’ll earn another $10. And then for every month that you keep the Smart App installed, you’ll get another $5. All total, you can earn up to $75 for the 1st year!
3. Watch Stupid Videos Online
This works because the videos are sponsored by brands who need to get them in front of as many eyeballs as possible. Every time you watch one of their ads, they’ll credit your account with cash.
Here’s a link to sign up. They give you $5 just for signing up.
4. Look for Whale Vomit
Have you ever heard the word “ambergris”?
If so, you might know it’s a coveted ingredient in most high-end perfumes — and that it’s also known as whale vomit!
Gross, I know. But, get this — if you find some, it’s worth $5,000 per pound!
Ambergris is usually secreted by the whale via fecal matter. However, in the rare event that the mass is too large to pass through the digestive tract, it’s vomited up (and out) by the whale.
These lumps usually float around the ocean — but sometimes come ashore.
In fact, we recently shared a story about a guy who found $60,000 worth while walking his dog on the beach one day!
If you’re anxious to start combing the beaches in your area, read more about identification techniques and storied discoveries by visiting Ambergris Expertise & Buying Worldwide.
5. Get $5 From Stash to Start Saving & Investing
I’m kind of obsessed with Stash (and not just because they give you $5).
Stash is an app available for both Android and Apple smartphones, and it makes it super simple to (finally) take the dive into investing, even if you don’t have a whole lot of spare cash.
To get the $5 bonus, just enter your email here, download the Stash smartphone app and setup your account with the same email address. Within two business days you’ll see the bonus added to your account.
6. Get Paid for Your Rants
Most of you know surveys aren’t our favorite way to make extra money, but we make an exception when we’re just vegging out on the couch. We figure as long as we’re just watching TV, there’s no reason we can’t click a few buttons at the same time.
I’ve heard some of the top-end surveys can pay up to $95, but those are rare and can take awhile to complete. Most surveys pay a buck or two and only take 10-15 minutes, making it pretty easy to earn $100 or more per month.
7. Put Your Gaming Addiction to Good Use
Apparently, the U.S. recognizes professional eSports (“electronic sports”) players as professional athletes.
Last year, we wrote about a team of five men in Los Angeles who make more than six figures in cash, sponsorships and living expenses by playing League of Legends.
If the money impresses you, the hours will seal the deal: The team wakes up around noon and plays the game until about 3 a.m. On top of free rent and sponsorship deals, each team member is paid more than $60,000.
8. Lay in Bed All Day
Could medical testing be a fun way to make money?
Jillian Shea thinks it is: She made $12,000 from participating in sleep studies. She answered a few questions online from her home in Florida before heading to Boston for the lucrative study.
And she’s not alone. If you have one of these ailments, you might be able to earn a little extra cash…
– Psoriasis (M3 Global Research) – Psoriasis psucks! But, if you’ve got it you can earn $5-$100 taking online surveys and contribute to advancements in medical treatment — without even leaving your couch!
– Arthritis – If you’re suffering from osteoarthritis and qualify, you may earn up to $1,000 for participating in this study.
– Rheumatoid Arthritis – If you have rheumatoid arthritis in the knee and/or hip and are otherwise healthy, you could qualify for a study that offers up to $625 compensation for sharing your thoughts and opinions.
9. Sell Jellyfish
Yes, there’s a market for pet jellyfish. And they’re not cheap.
The first retailer of its kind, JellyfishArt.com sell jellyfish, their specialized LED-lit tanks, food and other products. The least-expensive kit at the site costs $330.
How do you break into this bizarre business?
There’s a bit of a learning curve, but it’s not impossible: Alex Andon founded Jellyfish Art with less than $100 for advertising, plus loads of guts and creativity.
10. Get Paid for Your Sperm
You’ll find a wide range of opportunities for sperm donation, with as much of a range in pay.
The Seattle Sperm Bank, for example, requires an application, medical history and physical exam to approve you as a donor. Once approved, you can donate two to three times a week and receive $70 for every approved donation.
On the other hand, we found a recent posting seeking a donor with highly specific requirements:
- GPA of at least 3.4
- Considered very attractive and athletic
- 5’10” or greater
- Have blood type: A+, A-, O+ or O-
- Attend a four-year college or hold Bachelor’s degree (or greater)
- At least 50% Italian (Southern Italian/Sicilian a plus)
- Have had only female sexual partners
- Be able to substantiate the above
- Interest in football, mathematics and history added plus
For the right fit, the recipient was offering $6,000 for a donation, plus the promise that “there would be complete confidentiality involved and you would be legally absolved of any on-going responsibilities.”
11. Get Paid to Wear T-Shirts
From 2009-2013, Jason Zook made money promoting businesses wearing their T-shirts through his business IWearYourShirt.com.
He and several “shirt wearers” worked with more than 1,600 businesses before deciding to move on to other projects.
So, there could be a hole in the market…
What creative ways can you think of to promote small businesses?
Zook even used his notoriety to make money selling his last name — over the years, he’s been Jason Sadler, Jason Headsetsdotcom and Jason SurfrApp!
12. Stop Deleting Your Emails
It turns out that deleting your emails could be costing you serious money. Intrigued?
My new secret weapon is called Paribus — a tool that gets you money back for your online purchases. It’s free to sign up for Paribus and once you do, they will scan your email archives for any receipts. If it discovers you’ve purchased something from Amazon, Target or one of the other 16 retailers listed on their website, it will track the item’s price and issue you a refund anytime there’s a price drop!
You don’t have to do anything!
13. Sell Your Friendship
Get paid to be someone’s buddy! I’m not kidding.
You can register to become a Friend at RentAFriend.com, where paying users can contact you to attend concerts, sporting events, family functions, VIP events and more.
You can charge up to $50 an hour and set your own schedule.
Friends working full time (five days a week) earn up to $2,000 a week, plus free dinners and access to those events I mentioned.
What could you do as a “Friend” for 40 hours a week?
First of all, the site clarifies that it is “solely a platonic friendship website” — beyond that, options are endless.
If you have a special skill, like cooking or foreign language, you could teach them. Some people traveling or new to an area hire a Friend to show them the town. Some people just want someone to talk to.
14. Become an Uber Partner Driver
If you find solace on the road and enjoy finding the best route across town, this is a great way to make money doing it!
As an Uber contractor, you’re responsible for setting your schedule and motivating yourself to work — no one is keeping tabs on you. You keep 80% of everything you earn as a driver (Uber keeps 20%).
If you want to give it a try there’s a few things to keep in mind. You must be at least 21 years old, have three years of driving experience, have an in-state driver’s license, a clean driving record, and be able to pass a criminal background check.
Finally, your car must be a four-door, seat at least four passengers (excluding the driver), be registered in-state, and be covered by in-state insurance.
Here’s a link to apply with Uber.
15. Get Paid to Go on Top-Secret Missions
Remember scavenger hunts when you were a kid? Ever pretend you were a private investigator on an important mission?
Don’t let a few years get in the way of your fun.
QuickThoughts for Android turns your cellphone into private-eye technology, taking you on top-secret missions in your area.
Was that CVS you visited last month clean? How do the lines look at that McDonald’s you’ve stopped by for lunch? QuickThoughts Missions relies on your input — and sneakily-taken cellphone photography — to give businesses important feedback.
And like any respectable PI, you get paid for your investigative footwork. Pretending as an adult is looking better and better! Using your phone’s GPS technology, the app will prompt you for information from places you’ve visited in the past few weeks, as well as places it detects you’re visiting right now.
It even has missions you can accept and complete in the future. For instance, it might prompt you to go to your local Walgreens and snap a photo of the seasonal display.
Super fun, right? And you’ll earn valuable gift cards for Amazon and iTunes while you’re at it.
Unfortunately for iOS users, this opportunity is just for Android right now.
Which is kind of fitting, when you think about it. What would make a better private eye than an actual android?
16. Hang Out at Bars
Sign up for the Bar Integrity Mystery Shop through the Mystery Shopping Providers Association to get paid to go to bars.
As a mystery shopper, you’ll pose as a regular customer — while secretly rating each bar on speed of service, friendliness, accuracy, cleanliness and other factors.
MSP offers other types of mystery shops, as well. Choose what fits your schedule, so you can pick up retail shopping and restaurants, too, if you want to round out your day.
17. Make Money Test Driving Cars
Working through a company like BestMark, you’ll go to car lots and pose as a potential buyer.
So you get to test drive a car, which is pretty cool.
It also means you listen to the sales pitch, which is less exciting. But then you report back on your experience and get paid!
I used to do automotive mystery shopping, and I’d make $60 for each dealership I visited.
18. Watch More Television
All right, just hear me out on this one.
It’s definitely possible to get paid to watch TV… There’s a new company called “RewardTV” that pays you to answer trivia questions about last night’s TV shows.
Do you know who they killed off on Game of Thrones last week? Tell them about it and they’ll pay you.
Know which contestant got kicked off “The Voice” this week? They’ll pay you.
You’re not going to get rich doing this, but it’s a fun way to make an extra $15-$20/month. Pretty cool, right?
19. Open a Second Bank Account
We’ve put together a huge list of banks that’ll pay you just to open a bank account!
There’s no harm in having multiple bank accounts.
In fact, I often find it’s helpful to have multiple places to save (I’m less likely to touch the money), so I have separate savings accounts for my Christmas and vacation funds.
The top bank bonus is $500 right now — head over to this list to see all of the banks in your area offering free cash.
20. Drink Free Beer
When you get the perfect pint of craft beer from your local pub, it’s because someone trained the bartender in the minutiae of stocking, maintaining and pouring that beer.
Someone gets to make sure everything is running just right. That someone could be you.
Companies like Cask Marque in the U.K. hire beer experts to travel the country drinking pints and awarding plaques for quality.
21. Review the Latest Gadgets
If you’re obsessed with the latest releases in smartphones, laptops, 3D printers, drones and other gadgets, this is a cool way to be the first to see them.
Working for a publication like Tom’s Reviews or Laptop Mag, you’ll get to try new technology products and write reviews, how-tos, buying guides and other articles.
Your Turn: Guys, what’s the weirdest gig you’ve ever done to earn extra money?
Advertiser Disclosure: We are paid for some of our opinions in the post and some links may redirect to an affiliate partner. We’re letting you know because it’s what Honest Abe would do. After all, he is on our favorite coin.