6 Steps to Starting a Home Staging Business

Are you a fan of home renovation shows and wondered how to start a home staging business?

Do you have an eye for interior design?

Are you looking involved in the real estate industry in some way? Or want to get started in this line of work?

It’s never too late!

Just look at Meridith Baer, a professional screenwriter of 18 years who luckily used her friend’s home as temporary “home” of her 250 house plants and furniture while she moved houses, then ended up selling that “staged” home for over its listing price.

Baer’s first gig was sheer luck, but it opened a new world for her as brokers began seeking her real estate staging services so much so that she quit her job and launched her business Meridith Baer Home. By 2014, Baer has landed her own HGTV show “Staged To Perfection” and was taking home $1.7 million a month from her home staging business.

Pretty inspiring, right?

If you’re as interested as this as I am, check out everything I’ve gathered about how to start a home staging business below…

Real Estate Staging: What is a Home Stager?

As you might have guessed, a home stager is the person responsible for arranging furniture and decorating a house with the intent of showcasing its strengths and potential to buyers shopping around for a new home.

A home stager makes an unfurnished house appear “lived in” and ensures the house gives a good impression to potential buyers.

Making a house-for-sale prettier and cleaner results in a quicker listing-to-sale time.

How To Start A Home Staging Business

Staged bedroom

Starting any business requires research. Learn, learn, learn everything you can about home staging.

Once you’re 100% sure that you want to explore this line of business, follow the steps how to start a home staging business:

1. Learn about your market

Before opening up shop, check out your competition.

Who are the most popular home stagers in your area? Are they any good? Spy on their pricing, and if you’re lucky enough, visit the houses they’ve staged.

Understand the demand of local home staging. Do local brokers hire stagers to help with their houses for sale?

If there’s no market in your city, are you willing to explore other housing markets? Which ones?

2. Complete Legalities

Now that you’ve explored your chances of breaking into the local housing market and weighed your options, you can now fix paperwork needed in running this business.

  • Decide on a name.
  • Secure a business license
  • Determine your pricing structure
  • Hire lawyers to write contracts
  • Buy liability insurance

This should also be the time you invest in building a website since it would serve as your online portfolio and “home base” where clients would easily find you.

3. Connect with Local Brokers and Contractors

Begin networking.

Reach out to contractors, real estate agents, homeowners selling their properties by themselves, and others involved in the local real estate market.

These people are more than happy to welcome you into the business.

4. Compile Sources

Find furniture stores, home decor suppliers, and other sources of discounted home products.

You’ll be needing these sources once you land your first client.

If you’re interested in specific styles, such as vintage decor, you can go garage sale hunting for pieces that could fit your ideas.

List down furniture rental options as well. This is essential for any home stagers starting out, since large homes may require more pieces of furniture that you cannot provide just yet. Renting can help not only in saving money and remove the need for storage space.*

* Note that there will come a time that you’d need to rent storage units to house your stuff, but it shouldn’t be a priority for now.

5. Market Your Business

Learn how to promote your business both online and offline.

Online:

  • Learn about optimizing your website for local search. Use keywords that local brokers may use to find stagers like yourself.
  • Create a brand and stick to it.
  • Liven up your online presence: open basic social media accounts such as Facebook page, Twitter and LinkedIn. Take advantage of Instagram’s picture-centric platform – it would serve your business good.

Offline:

  • Prepare calling cards and fliers to give out
  • Advertise on community newspapers, bulletin boards or other similar resources
  • Print out a copy of your portfolio, which will be useful when pitching to people

6. Continuously Build Your Business

Never stop improving your business in all fronts.

  • Collect testimonials: If you land a home staging gig, make sure to get client feedback, ask permission if you could post it online, and continue doing this even if you’re swamped with new clients.
  • Build your furniture inventory: If you’d like to expand your business, you should invest on furniture and decor. Do it gradually and only if the income can support it.
  • Share your knowledge: One way to generate buzz for your business is to start blogging about your home staging gigs. Talk about your projects, showcase before/after pictures, and provide useful tips to those who cannot afford your service and would love to stage their homes themselves. Doing this makes you an authority in the field. Squeeze in some keywords into your blog posts and Google would love your for it, too!

Home Staging Business FAQs

Home Stager Salary: How Much do home stagers get paid?

The amount of home staging depends largely on the size of project and number of rooms being staged. Usually, the more expensive a home, the more costly it is to stage.

Home stagers charge around $100 to $600 for an initial design consultation. Online consultations is also possible and often charge lower.

The actual home staging costs somewhere between $200 and $500 a month per room.

Of course, these amounts would depend on a number of factors, such as your experience, portfolio, target market and so on.

What kind of start-up costs are there?

The cool thing about starting a home staging business is that it doesn’t require much investment.

Just look at our example above: Meridith Baer didn’t have to buy furniture for her first “gig.” In fact, the plants and things she used for staging her friend’s unfurnished home was her personal stuff.

If you become a home stager, you can build up your inventory of furniture, decor, and other supplies as you go.

That said, if you want to show off your skills, and find it hard to land a gig, you can always invest on some supplies and stage a house as a testing ground. While this would mean that you’ll be shouldering money upfront, it’s only an option if you wish to jump-start your home staging business.

What requirements do I need to complete? Licenses? Permits?

Aside from having a good eye in design and furniture to use for staging, you’d need paperwork and a plan to run your business.

You’ll need a business license, an official business name, marketing plan, pricing structure, and legal paperwork (such as contracts).

A website is also a must, since it’s the easiest way to showcase your past work, post client feedback, and another platform to use in communicating with existing and potential clients.

Do I have to buy everything used for staging a house?

Staging companies usually invest in high-end furniture to make the house look magazine-worthy, but if you have contacts with furniture stores (that will let you rent items for a month or so), then it’s worth a shot especially if you’re just starting out.

After a while, you’ll be able to buy furniture to add to your inventory.

Many home staging businesses skip the mall furniture stores and either go direct to the factory, or find a local furniture maker who makes something similar to what they had in mind.

Where do home stagers store furniture that are not in use?

When your inventory is still small and you’re just starting out, you can store furniture in a vacant room in your house, at a friend’s house, a neighbor’s garage you can rent temporarily, or other similar options.

Once your clients increase and your inventory requires more storage space, your best bet is to find a storage unit you can rent out.

Do know that many home staging businesses consider this as trap since the continuous expense of renting a storage space will add up, so the projects you bring into the business must compensate for this monthly expense.

The Bottom Line

Lastly, what’s the job outlook of a home stager? Surely, there’s no sense in learning how to start a home staging business if there’s no future here, right?

Ten years ago, at the time when the real estate market wasn’t so good, CNN wrote that Home Staging would be the number one career poised for growth. Today, the real estate market has bounced back quite nicely that brokers can afford to hire home stagers to jazz up their listings.

There’s a ton of numbers pointing to a good future of home staging businesses from here on out, so if you’ve got what it takes, there shouldn’t be anything stopping you from pursuing this type of business.

In between jobs, you can put your staging skills to work as a professional organizer.

Good luck!

20 Quick Ways To Earn Extra Money for Christmas in 2020

The most wonderful time in the year is almost upon us again.

And it’s got most of us thinking about how we can get that Christmas money to spend on fancy meals, get-togethers, trips to see loved ones, and of course, presents.

Others may be thinking of getting extra cash to donate to charity or buy food for food banks.

Whatever the purpose, you’re probably looking to earn some money in these months before the holidays.

20 Ways To Earn Christmas Money

Here are 20 ways to earn extra cash for Christmas this year.

I’ve broken down the categories into various ways you can make money, both online and off.

Go Online

If you’re looking to score some cash fast, doing quick tasks online may be the simplest way to get started. Here are some suggestions on how to make money for Christmas online.

how to make money for Christmas online

1. Answer surveys.

You can answer surveys in a matter of minutes and get paid within hours; that is if you choose the right survey sites.

Survey Junkie, Swagbucks, and Survey Voices to name just a few legit sites.

More survey sites to join can be found in this blog post.

2. Complete online microjobs.

Microjobs are those that take minutes to complete.

For example, signing up to websites, sharing Facebook posts or retweeting, or researching topics online.

Some of the reputable sites that offer microjobs include Amazon Mechanical Turk, Clickworker, or Fiverr.

3. Test websites.

Web designers and SEO companies want to ensure that the website they’re building is user-friendly and results in a positive experience.

They pay website-tester companies that in turn recruit and pay website testers to go to their websites, review the on-page elements and pages, and then provide feedback.

Analysia, User Testing, and What Users Do are some of the sites you can check out (you can find more in this list).

The pay is typically $10 for 15 minutes of testing, but the amount and frequency of the payout may vary.

Run Errands

A few years ago—okay, fine decades—if I wanted extra cash from my parents aside from my allowance, I had to do extra errands around the house.

The grown-up version of that would be doing errands for other people to make some quick Christmas money.

4. Deliver groceries.

You can do this on a freelance basis for individual clients that will pay you to do their grocery shopping for them, or you can join a company like Instacart, Shipt, or Walmart Grocery and deliver groceries for many different clients in your area.

earn christmas money by delivering food

5. Deliver food.

Food delivery services are on the rise in recent years, serving those who don’t know how to cook, have a craving for a certain kind of food, or those who simply don’t have the time.

Sign up to deliver food for services like UberEats, DoorDash, and Postmates.

They’re mostly flexible in terms of time and means of transportation, as long as you satisfy your customers’ needs.

6. Deliver drinks.

Parties and get-togethers with adults almost always feature some kind of alcoholic drink, especially around the holidays.

When they run out, that’s when you come in.

Apply to be a delivery driver for services like Drizly or Saucey; they get their drinks without anyone having to do a liquor run, and you get to earn to take the drinks to their party.

7. Drive your car.

In the flurry of activity in the holiday season—parties, shopping trips, and more parties—you can help drive people around by signing up on Uber and Lyft.

8. Take up babysitting or housesitting.

Babysitting is a classic way to earn some extra income, and babysitters become more in demand during the holidays, due to the break when kids are out of school and all the holiday gatherings and errands that the adults have to do.

Housesitting for a family who’s going out of town for the holidays is another way to earn extra income over Christmas. It’s basically a paid temporary relocation.

Use Your Skills

You likely have some specialized skills that you can use to make some money for the holidays.

Take advantage of these skills.

9. Teach English.

Most online jobs teaching English to non-native speakers require an ESL certification or at least a university teaching degree.

However, there are some mobile apps that only require you to speak excellent English.

Apps to check out include Cambly, NiceTalk, and SkimaTalk.

10. Write for other people’s blogs.

Plenty of blog owners are willing to pay for your time, experience, and added knowledge, so writing one-off articles for blogs can make you some quick cash.

If you already own a blog, this has the added benefit of promoting your own blog to a new audience.

To start looking for blogs that pay for articles, search for topics you’re interested in writing about and then include “write for us” enclosed in double quotes in your search query. For instance, you can search for [parenting “write for us”] and come up with parenting blogs that accept paid submissions.

11. Wrap presents.

Receiving a present is awesome, but the experience is enhanced when you get a beautifully wrapped one.

But gift wrapping can be tedious and requires skill.

make Christmas money by wrapping gifts

If you have a knack for choosing the right paper and bows, knowing how to treat certain presents differently, and making neat folds and perfectly curled bows, people will pay you to do it.

Retail stores and department stores are likely to be looking for gift wrappers around the holidays.

You can also offer your services yourself as a freelancer.

12. Make and send Christmas cards.

Did you learn calligraphy as a hobby or so you can make your journal pretty?

Why not earn from your calligraphy skills, too?

Create generic holiday cards and gift tags and sell them through Etsy.

You can also offer to make custom-made greeting cards, with your clients letting you know what size, color, and message to write.

Work A Seasonal Job

The demand for some jobs increases during the holiday season.

Take this opportunity to earn some quick Christmas cash.

13. Pick up shifts in local retail stores.

The months leading up to the holidays are a busy time for retail stores, so they may be hiring temporary workers for extra help during busy times.

14. Be a customer service representative.

Plenty of companies hire temporary phone and chat representatives during the holiday season to answer inquiries and input sales for customers over the phone.

You can do this in an actual call center or from home.

15. Work at a resort.

Depending on where you are in the world, people will be likely to visit ski resorts or beach resorts around the holidays.

If you live near a resort community, or if you won’t mind being relocated for a while, there are plenty of opportunities for short-term work in these resorts.

snowboard instructor

Food and beverage jobs and hospitality jobs are the most obvious ones, but you can also get some work as an instructor, customer service rep, or digital marketing.

16. Host or perform at parties and events.

As the number of parties and events go up during Christmas, so does the demand for hosts, musicians, and other performers like magicians and comedians rise.

Offer your services to companies for their corporate parties, as well as event venues and restaurants where events are often held.

Sell Your Stuff

The holidays may not be a particularly convenient time to do some Kondo-ing.

But if you can clean out your house and get some Christmas money out of it, then it’s a worthy investment of time and effort.

17. Books

Bookscouter helps you sell your used textbooks and other books to buyback vendors online.

You can also sell books on Amazon, but it may be more trouble than it’s worth.

18. Electronics

Old game consoles and games, DVD players and DVDs, smartphones, and computers can fetch a fair price on Decluttr.

You can also use Best Buy’s Trade-In Program and get Best Buy gift cards in return (which you can then give or use to buy presents).

19. Makeup

Bought the wrong shade, your skin reacted unpleasantly, or you simply have buyer’s remorse?

Sell your makeup back to MUABS or GlamBot and get a few dollars for makeup you aren’t going to use anyway.

20. Clothes

You may have been giving away your clothes to charity (and don’t get me wrong, the recipients appreciate it), but some of your clothes that are from designer labels or just simply fashionable and in good-as-new condition might make you a profit of a few dollars or even up to tens or hundreds.

Poshmark and thredUP are popular places to sell preloved clothes.

Here are some more things to sell to make a quick buck.

Rake in That Christmas Money

If there’s anything to be learned from today’s blog post, it’s that quick does NOT mean easy.

The good thing is that most of these short-term gigs can go beyond earning you some Christmas money and actually turn into long-term jobs or even your own home-based business.

Need more ideas for quick holiday money? Check out this list of ideas on how to make quick money in one day.

Looking for more long-term ways to earn money from home? Here are some real ways to make money from home.

Which quick jobs will you be trying out? Sound out in the comments!

8 Places That Pay You To Live There and Start Anew

8 Places That Pay You To Live There

If someone offered you free money to relocate, would you do it? Believe it or not, there are places that pay you to live there.

It almost sounds too good to be true, doesn’t it?

But places that pay you to move there often have a few good reasons to persuade people to do it.

These locations either have a low or steadily declining population, and an influx of outsiders can help boost their numbers to revive their communities and attract outside investments and businesses as well as government funding.

So if you’re looking to make a change, and starting a new life somewhere else seems appealing, why not go someplace that really, really, really wants you to move there?

In today’s article, I list down 8 places that pay you to move there, as well as what incentives and requirements they expect from those who want to move there.

8 Places That Pay You To Live There

1. Alaska

Alaskans have probably been asked this question at least once in their life:

“Do you get paid to live in Alaska?”

Alaska has been paying each of its citizens (yup, every man, woman, and child) a Permanent Fund Dividend (PFD) since 1982.

This dividend comes from a portion of the state’s oil royalties invested in a permanent fund.

Get Paid to Live in Alaska

The actual payout varies as it is based on the number of eligible applicants and the level of income over the past five years.

For example, the PFD for 2018 was $1,600 while the PFD for 2017 was $1,100.

The basic requirements to be eligible for a PFD for the current year include being a resident for the entire previous year, intending to remain an Alaskan resident indefinitely, and having no felony convictions.

Incentive: Cash; amount varies

More information about eligibility requirements and the application process: Alaska Department of Revenue, Permanent Fund Dividend Division

2. Vermont

In a nutshell: Vermont wants you to move there and work from home for an employer that’s not from Vermont.

Confused? Let me explain.

Approved in January 2019, Vermont’s Remote Worker Grant Program aims to pay 100 people up to $10,000 to move to Vermont in 2019 (and 20 people per year afterward).

To be eligible for the grant, one has to be a Vermont resident employed full time by a business outside of Vermont.

Expenses and fees for relocation, membership to a coworking space, computer software or hardware, and broadband access or upgrade are reimbursable up to $5,000 a year for up to two years.

The bill aims to encourage existing Vermont residents who are part of the remote workforce to stay in the state, and to draw outsiders who wouldn’t otherwise move to Vermont because their jobs tied them down.

Plus, Vermont isn’t a bad place to get paid to live.

It has the perfect combination of visual appeal, food culture, and outdoor activities.

Incentive: Cash, up to $5,000 a year for two years; reimbursement basis

More information about eligibility requirements and the application process: Vermont Department of Economic Development: Remote Worker Grant Program

3. Tulsa, Oklahoma

Tulsa Remote is similar to Vermont’s Remote Worker Grant Program in that it pays remote workers to live in Tulsa.

To be eligible for this program, you’ll need to be 18+ years old, eligible to work in the US, with full-time remote employment or self-employment outside of Tulsa County, and willing to move to Tulsa within 6 months.

The only downside is that 2019 applications are now closed, but you can subscribe to their newsletter and get notified when 2020 applications open. On the plus side, though, you have enough time to decide if moving is right for you.

Incentive: Cash upfront ($10,000); membership to a coworking space (worth $1,800)

More information about eligibility requirements and the application process: Tulsa Remote

4. Hamilton, Ohio

Student loans are a pain in the butt.

But if you have more than $10,000 in student loan debt, and you’re willing to move to Hamilton, Ohio, you may be in luck.

Get paid to live Ohio

The Talent Attraction Program (TAP) Scholarship is known as a “reverse scholarship” because it targets those who have already graduated from college and need help with paying off their student loans.

Eligible candidates must have graduated within the last 7 years from a STEAM program (Science, Technology, Engineering, the Arts, or Mathematics), not be currently living in targeted urban core areas in Hamilton at the time of application, demonstrate current employment within the City of Hamilton or Butler County, and intend to give back to the community.

If you get through the application process, you can receive up to $10,000, paid out over 30 months or 2.5 years (around $300 per month).

The catch is if you cease to be employed or move out of Hamilton before the 30 months are up, you can’t get any more payments.

Incentive: Cash, paid monthly over 30 months ($10,000)

More information about eligibility requirements and the application process: Hamilton Community Foundation, Talent Attraction Program Scholarship

5. Maine

Another place that will pay you to live there is the state of Maine.

As their population is aging, they need to convince new college graduates to stay in Maine.

Get paid to live in Maine

One of the ways they do that is to offer to help pay their student loans.

Since 2008, Opportunity Maine has reimbursed student loan payments for college graduates residing and working in Maine.

Up until recently, however, this has been limited to college graduates who studied in Maine and earned their degree after 2008.

Now, if you’ve earned your Bachelors or Associates degree after 2015 from any accredited school in the US (i.e., even those outside of Maine), you can now apply to take advantage of this debt assistance in the form of tax credits.

You’re eligible to apply if you’re a Maine resident for the tax year that you’re applying to, you work in Maine regardless of where your employer is located (that is, you pay taxes in Maine), and you didn’t work outside Maine for more than three months.

If you’re qualified, the amount of money you’re paying your student loans annually is subtracted from your state income taxes.

For example, if you pay $1,500 in student loans but you owe the state $2,000 in taxes, then you just pay Maine $500 at tax time.

Incentive: Tax credits; amount varies depending on the amount of student loans and type of degree earned

More information about eligibility requirements and the application process: Opportunity Maine

6. Albinen, Switzerland

Ever been stuck on a harrowing commute to work and thought to yourself, “That’s it! I’m moving to the mountains where it’s pretty and quiet and relaxing!”

Well, maybe you can actually do it and get paid for your trouble.

Get Paid to live in Switzerland

The village of Albinen in the Swiss Alps is another place willing to pay people to live there.

They’re offering 25,000 Swiss francs (equivalent to $25,000) per adult and 10,000 Swiss francs (equivalent to $10,000) per child to live in the village.

This offer has strict conditions though; only those who have Swiss passports or foreigners with C residence permits may apply.

Aside from that, you need to commit to living there for at least 10 years, be aged below 45, buy residential property worth at least 200,000 Swiss francs, and have that property be a permanent residence (not a secondary one).

The village population is currently less than 300 residents, so there aren’t a lot of jobs and the local school closed down.

But if you don’t mind commuting to a nearby town to work or study, or doing these remotely, living in this vacation town might be a good plan.

The local government aims to bring in around five to ten families, so slots are very limited. If you’re interested, do your research and apply as soon as you can.

Incentive: Cash; $25,000 per adult, $10,000 per child

More information about eligibility requirements and the application process: There’s hardly any detail in the Albinen website, so you’d be better off calling or emailing them directly using the contact details found on the site.

7. Candela, Italy

If you’d like somewhere a little warmer than the Swiss Alps, why not consider sunny Italy?

Candela, located in the Puglia region in Italy, used to be called “Little Naples” because of its bustling, animated streets. Now, there are less than 3,000 residents.

A few years ago, the mayor introduced a plan to revive the town by offering to pay people to move to their town: €800 to singles, €1,200 to couples, €1,500 to €1,800 for three-member families, and €2,000 for families of four to five people.

To be eligible, you’ll need to be a resident of Candela, rent a house for at least one year, and have a job with a salary of at least €7,500.

Incentive: Cash; amount varies

More information about eligibility requirements and the application process: There isn’t a dedicated website for this program, so inquire at the Italian embassy nearest you for information.

8. Antikythera, Greece

Beaches, azure skies, and seas with crystal clear water more your style?

Get paid to live in Greece

The tiny, isolated island of Antikythera, Greece, has a more serious population problem than any of the other places on this list. As of 2018, there are only 24 permanent residents, most of whom are over the age of 70.

To address this, the local government program is offering new residents a house, a plot of land, and a monthly stipend of €500 for the first three years.

The selection process is stringent, the waiting time long, and they prioritize Greek citizens, but the chance to live in a beautiful, remote, historical island may well be worth the wait.

Incentive: Cash (€500 monthly); housing; land

More information about eligibility requirements and the application process: Repopulation Project of Antikythira: The website looks new and under construction, but chances are this will be the first website to be updated with any news and details on how to apply to live in Antikythera.

Would you move to a place that paid you to live there?

Moving can be trying and costly, but choosing one of these places that pay you to live there can help ease the transition.

More than getting paid to move, you need to consider whether it will make sense for you (and your family, if you have one) to move.

If you could live and work anywhere and still do your job, wouldn’t you want to live in a place that offers a respite from the hustle and bustle of a large urban city?

Would you move to any of the places I named above? Or have you been paid to move to another state or city? Share your opinions or experiences in the comments!

9 Companies that Give Away Free Shoes by Mail

Who wouldn’t grab the chance of receiving free shoes by mail, right?

It may sound like a marketing scheme, but people have actually been getting free sneakers from popular brands like Nike and Adidas for years.

This program is called product testing, which is often part of a company’s R&D process to collect feedback about a consumer’s preference and reactions on a particular product.

So, am I just given free shoes right after sign-up?

Not quite.

The Catch: How to Get Free Shoes Straight from Company Factory

Most big companies, such as Nike, have a web page that lets consumers sign up to get paid to test products.

Once you enter your information, your name becomes a part of a database of consumers.

Depending on the company’s current promos and line-up of products, the company will then launch a product testing campaign for an assigned number of people and certain demographic.

For example:

  • 100 male, 30 to 40 years old, weighs over 250 pounds
  • 50 male, 50 female, all under 40 years old, participating in a marathon in the next 3 months
  • Flat-footed people, any age, can wear the shoes an hour daily for 6 months

Simply put, if you don’t fit the demographic a company requires at the moment, you won’t be given free shoes.

If you’re not chosen right now, this doesn’t mean you are also disqualified for other campaigns. A particular sports brand conducts multiple product testing campaigns each year, so don’t lose hope.

9 Companies that Give Away Free Shoes

I didn’t include Nike here, because I wrote about Nike product testing programs extensively in the past. If you want free Nike shoes, see how you can get a pair here.

Note that product testing isn’t exclusive to the sports clothing industry, but since we’re talking about free shoes, here are 9 companies that you should definitely sign up for:

1. ADIDAS

Fill out their personal details form to get started.

Don’t worry, you don’t have to pay a cent and it only takes a few minutes to apply as a product tester. But you do have to qualify.

Once Adidas begins a new study and choose from its database of potential, the company will send an e-mail telling you that you were chosen to participate.

All other details will be included in that invitation.

After confirming that you want to join, Adidas will send you your free shoes (or clothes) in the mail.

Read the instructions. Here you’ll learn if you need to give back the shoes, or keep them for yourself forever. Adidas usually requires you to take down notes (ex. 1 hour jogging, September 18), and answer a questionnaire online at the end of an assignment.

2. Brooks Running

Brooks Running testers

Brooks Running give shoes, apparel, and sports bras to runners for testing in the real world, which are added to their running research data and helps them improve on their existing products.

Two types of testers are available: one who can get tested at the “lab” in Seattle, Washington, and the wear tester (who can be from anywhere in the US).

Brooks Running will pay for two-way shipping of the products to/from your home, but you have to agree to provide feedback and return the product when asked to.

You won’t receive any money for this though.

If you apply and you don’t hear from Brooks Running, don’t fret. You are already in the Brooks Product Tester database and have a chance to be sent an invite once the right opportunity for you appears.

3. New Balance

To join New Balance’s program, enter your e-mail address and create a profile so the company will know more about you.

Submit the form and you’re now part of the New Balance Tester Community database.

New Balance also chooses based on demographics and interests. If you’re chosen, they’ll notify you first before sending a new prototype by mail.

Go to your profile online, follow the assignment instructions, and submit feedback.

Sometimes, you don’t need to return the shoes.

4. Reebok

Reebok boasts the reason their footwear and apparel truly meet people’s athletic needs is that they test footwear and apparel on REAL ATHLETES.

Here’s where you come in.

If you’re physically active and want to join the product testing program for free shoes and clothes, fill-in details like shoe size, location, activity level, and so on.

Product testing lasts 3 to 6 weeks, but Reebok will ask you send back the products after testing.

5. Red Wing Shoes

If you love boots and other rich work shoes, Red Wing Shoes is looking for product testers interested in wearing their products on the “toughest, dirtiest and hardest-working situations.”

The requirements change from time to time.

When I checked, they were looking for testers in the Minneapolis/St.Paul MN area with specific feet sizes.

Those who are qualified can fill-out the application form to the side.

What’s cool about Red Wing Shoes is that the boots are yours after testing.

6. Puma

Back in April 2019, Puma launched its beta tester program for its self-lacing training shoe Fit Intelligence (Fi) for select countries.

Watch out for more Puma product testing, since the FI training shoes were the first one.

7. Saucony

Try out running shoes and athletic gear for free. Fill out an application form to become a product tested.

A bit of warning though: the form is super-extensive and digs in about your history as a runner. If you’re not a runner, better skip this program and go with another one.

Saucony tries to find testers that will really use the pair of shoes for running (you’ll be asked a comprehensive survey after you complete the task).

8. Columbia Global Performance

Columbia is actively inviting a broad range of people to test out their products. The company prefers those who love the Great Outdoors or is into sports.

Just apply to become a tester, get accepted into the database, pass the eligibility requirements, and get a chance to test either a pair of hiking boots or running shoes and submit feedback.

Columbia Product Testing

Columbia’s testing program is a bit unique – they’ll give you a set of tasks to complete throughout the testing period.

Unfortunately, you do have to return the free shoes after a couple of weeks.

They shoulder two-way shipping fees.

9. Under Armour

To join the Under Armour testing community, simply enter your name and e-mail address, then fill out your profile.

Like other product testing processes on this list, you have to qualify (based on your demography and profile info) to join the current program.

It’s free to join the testing program, but hard to get in.

If you’re lucky enough to get picked, you’d have to follow the instructions included in the package with free shoes.

There’s no cash prize here as well and you’d have to send the product back at the end of your test.

Get Other Free Stuff by Mail

When you’re chosen to be part of any of these programs, be honest with your feedback.

The company needs that honesty to improve upon the free shoes you’ve just tested before the official release.

If you’re a fan of Amazon, they also have the Amazon product testing program you can join – and they cover a wider range of products.

Now that you’re introduced to getting free shoes, why not explore other things you can get for free like baby stuff samples, birthday freebies, or other kinds of free samples by mail.

5 Hobbies That Make Money: Earn In Your Spare Time

5 Hobbies That Make Money: Earn In Your Spare Time

What if I told you that you can make use of your free time to take up hobbies that make money?

Sounds unbelievable, but it’s true.

In today’s article, we look at some fun and profitable hobbies you can start doing so you can earn income while enjoying yourself.

5 Hobbies That Make Money

1. Making Music

Listening to and making music are some of the most popular hobbies around.

You’ll be hard-pressed to find a single person who doesn’t at least listen to or appreciate a single genre of music.

Amazingly, there are websites and apps that make it possible for you to get paid to listen to music by posting reviews, filling out surveys, and referring other music enthusiasts.

If you can play an instrument or two, can sing, and have no anxiety about performing in front of strangers, you can try your hand at busking. Make sure you’re in an area where free speech is permitted, though.

Looking for something a bit more professional or glamorous? You’re probably going to have more fun playing at weddings and other social events.

What if your musical skills are more sophisticated and you’re looking for more of a challenge?

Session musicians are hired to play during a recording session or a local concert but are not permanent band members. Reach out to studios and music labels to advertise your services.

You can also pass on your musical skills to others by becoming a music tutor. Local students are the best ones so you don’t lose too much money commuting.

Performing or teaching in front of a live audience isn’t for you? Maybe online teaching is. Create a video course and offer it through Udemy or Coursera.

2. Getting Fit

Getting paid to exercise is great if you actually love working out.

Or if you’re trying to find a reason to start exercising, earning a little side cash is not a bad way to motivate you to get fit.

These days, plenty of websites give cashbacks and rewards to people who want to get in shape.

A word of caution, though: make sure the targets you set are suitable to your current fitness level and desired goals.

Yes, getting paid to lose weight is awesome, but don’t overexert yourself and sacrifice your health for a few dollars.

If your preferred exercise is walking or running, or if you’re a complete beginner and would like to start somewhere, you might like Lympo, an app that allows you to complete walking or running challenges in exchange for rewards you can redeem in their in-app marketplace.

Doing errands while walking can motivate you further to get up from your couch and explore your area.

Apps such as Postmates and Gigwalk allow you to sign up to work on tasks near your location, which is great if you’re living in an urban area like New York or LA where gigs are offered a few blocks of each other and you can potentially complete multiple gigs in one go.

You could also get paid to walk dogs as well.

If you want a more holistic approach to fitness, the Achievement app tracks virtually all your activities—physical activities (e.g., walking, biking, swimming, etc.), sleep, diet—in exchange for points that you can exchange for cash into your PayPal or through a cheque.

Care to make it interesting? Gamble on your own fitness goals and win back your wager (and then some) when you meet these goals.

Apps that will take your bet include the apps from the WayBetter family (DietBet, StepBet, and RunBet) and HealthyWage.

Turned into a workout beast yet? Pass on your knowledge and help others achieve their fitness goals by being a fitness instructor in your local gym or online.

3. Crafting

For many enthusiasts, crafting is its own reward.

It’s soothing, it’s satisfying, and there are few things more rewarding than actually using that thing that you made yourself.

But there are lots of crafting hobbies that make money. Crafting has actually been a popular way to make money for years, but it exploded when Etsy was founded and is now more widespread than ever, thanks to Pinterest.

The best-selling products on Etsy right now are handmade jewelry, custom-made planner accessories such as fillers and stickers, and personalized party and wedding decorations.

However, don’t limit yourself to these crafts; bespoke items are in demand. Here’s a list of crafts to make and sell not only on Etsy, but on your own website or through craft fairs and pop-up stores.

Again, these are suggestions. Don’t limit yourself. If you’re already hooked on a particular crafting hobby, go for it.

Need an idea of where to start or need additional inspiration? Go on Etsy and Pinterest to find out what’s popular and what strikes your fancy.

4. Taking Photographs

Moments from life events, vacations, and other once-in-a-lifetime occasions captured on camera are priceless.

And yes, anyone can take pictures from their smartphones.

But not everyone has the right equipment, the artistic inclination, or the level of photography skills that make money.

If you’re lucky enough to have this talent, or if you’re willing to spend time practicing and honing your skills, photography can be a fulfilling and lucrative hobby for you.

Not sure which camera to buy? Don’t get pressured into spending thousands of dollars for your first DSLR.

Plenty of decent DSLRs for beginners go for $500 and below. Also, hold off on buying lens kits and other accessories until you’re comfortable handling your starter camera.

If you’re not confident about the quality of your photos, there are plenty of books and online courses to learn the basics. Bear in mind, though, that actual practice is a more important factor in how good a photographer you’ll be.

Stock photography is a good way to start earning some money on the side while you’re getting the hang of it. Many bloggers, website designers, and small to medium business owners are on the market for fresh, relevant photos.

You can sell your stock photos through digital marketplaces, such as Adobe Stock or Shutterstock.

You can also build your own website and sell your stock photos there so you get to keep 100% of the proceeds.

If you’re confident in your photography skills and have social and business skills, you might want to start photographing weddings and other events.

Event photography gigs pay more, but the expectations and responsibilities increase considerably. The good news is you don’t have to do this full time if you don’t want to; you ultimately decide which jobs to take.

5. Shopping

You’re probably thinking this one doesn’t belong on this list, as it involves spending money as opposed to making it.

Hear me out.

Shopping can be an expensive hobby, but that doesn’t mean you can’t earn money from it.

For instance, did you know that you can get cash back for your shopping receipts? So if you’re already shopping for essentials like groceries, apparel, electronics, dining, etc., you might as well get cash back from those purchases, right?

You can also take it one step higher and get paid to be a mystery shopping.

Mystery shoppers visit retail businesses anonymously and truthfully assess their customer experience based on a set of criteria.

If this sounds good to you, start by signing up to as many legitimate mystery shopping providers and organizations as you can. Some of the popular ones include the Independent Mystery Shoppers’ Coalition, Mystery Shopping Providers Association, and International Association of Service Evaluators.

You can also do everyday shopping errands, like becoming a personal grocery shopper, for people who are homebound and can benefit for a more personal experience than online shopping, such as those with physical or mental disabilities, or working professionals who don’t have the time or work odd hours.

A more lucrative way to earn money from shopping is by offering your services as a personal shopper.

Personal shoppers assist clients who don’t know how or where to shop for themselves or who simply don’t have time to shop.

If you love fashion and if you have an uncanny sense of what will look and feel good for a certain person, this could be a lucrative gig for you. You might want to be trained and certified to get more clients and get paid more.

Take Up Hobbies That Can Make Money

Everyone should have at least one hobby.

Hobbies give you a chance to take a productive break from your daily routine, offer new challenges, and provide an outlet for stress.

A good thing about hobbies is that you don’t have to stick to one if you don’t like it. If you don’t particularly find a hobby interesting or fulfilling, you can always find a new one.

And the best part is that everyone can take up a hobby, which means anyone can pick up one or even a few profitable hobbies.

It’s great that you can do these money-making hobbies from home (mostly), but if you’re also interested in building a business that earns money by itself so you have more time for your hobbies, check out this free on-demand training to learn how to build a full-time income online with no experience.

Which of these hobbies seem interesting to you? Do you have a hobby not mentioned that made money? Share it in the comments!

Here’s How To Become A Babysitter in 2020

For many teenage girls, learning how to become a babysitter is the initial step to landing their first-ever job outside their families.

In most states, there are no specific laws about minimum age requirement of babysitters, but 11 to 15 is an acceptable age range.

Unfortunately, here’s the dilemma most teens face: how can one become a babysitter, if parents are looking for experienced babysitters?

This guide is exactly for future babysitters like you who are looking to land their first paying gig.

Tools of the Trade: Learn How to Babysit

Aside from your age, you should also be mature and responsible enough to look after another child’s life.

It may sound easy, but babysitters have three main roles:

1. Keep Kids Safe

Accidents and injuries happen all the time.

The difference is when someone present during these emergencies is able to help.

Arm yourself with pediatric CPR training and first AID, so you know exactly what to do when someone is drowning or chocking.

Learn emergency procedures. It’s not enough that you know how to call 911.

You should read up on fire rescue, what to do with an open wound, and other scenarios. Be sure you have emergency contact and numbers of kid’s parents listed on a notebook.

2. Keep Kids Taken Care Of

Aside from basic care, you should also know how to handle behavioral issues.

For example, if parents of the baby leave during your shift, what will you do if the baby cries non-stop and looks for the parents?

How will you handle toddlers not listening to you?

Prepare meals of infants and toddlers. Make sure you take note of food allergies and items that are not allowed, such as fruit juice or junk food.

When you babysit for a family, it’s most likely that you end up as the oldest kid in the house.

Always talk and act as a good example because younger kids could copy what you’re doing.

3. Keep Kids Entertained

If you’re babysitting multiple kids, the easiest way to handle them is to keep them busy.

The best babysitters bring a “sitter bag” that contains games, art supplies, puzzles, and other surprises that younger kids would love.

Stimulate the& young minds of with age-specific knowledge included into play.

If you don’t have an idea how to do this, check out Blippi on YouTube. That guy knows how to incorporate kinder concepts into day-to-day objects.

How to Start Babysitting

Before you apply for babysitting jobs, take a course from Red Cross first.

Available as both an in-person and online course, teens age 11 to 15 can learn basic care for infants, basic first aid, age-appropriate activities, emergency protocols, and managing your babysitting business.

Red Cross also have special courses for CPR, First Aid, and AED training, among others.

The Red Cross course isn’t really required, but it would give you an edge over other babysitters, when the position boils down to experience level.

You should also work on:

  • Your Communication Skills – Parents usually choose a babysitter who can communicate properly. If you are open to talk about anything from their kid’s behavioral problems to increasing babysitter fees, this openness would help build your relationship with families you work for.
  • Being Strict, but Fair – As a teenager, bigger kids may not be quick to listen to you. You should work on being stern and strict with the rules given to you by their parents.
  • Your Decision-making Skills – You should be ready to handle unexpected situations that require quick decision making. For example, the toddler you’re looking after asks you about sex (how well you answer questions like this will affect the kid and parents once you leave that house). A forest fire begins a couple of blocks away and you’re all alone with 2 toddlers. You get them to safety without waiting for the parents to call you back anymore. 
  • Your Work ethic – This will probably be your first job, so you have a lot of time to develop your work ethic. But working on it too early wouldn’t hurt. Be on time for all your shifts. Listen and follow rules from your “employers.” And generally do things in such a way that would make you feel proud.

Before you begin your job search, think about your transportation to the job.

Will your parents be able to bring you to the house where you babysit every time you have work?

If you don’t have transportation available, will you be open to walking? How about being driven to/from by your employers? Will your real parents be fine with this set-up?

If your parents are working and your new job cannot provide you with transportation, maybe you should consider online jobs for teens instead?

How to Find Babysitting Jobs

If you’re a big sister to younger siblings and you love being so, you might consider babysitting as one of the easy ways to make money.

Now that you know the tools of the trade and what to expect on the job, here’s the most challenging part of all: finding babysitting jobs for you. So where do we start the job hunt?

  • Recommendations – Ask your friends and family about possible babysitting jobs they know. If you’re up for it, make flyers and ask your parents to spread the word. Look around your area: your neighbors may be in need of help.
  • Check in school – Go around the school and ask your classmates if their parents are in need of a babysitter. How about your teachers? If your school has a job board, check if there are babysitting listings available. 
  • Community center – Does your town have a community center? Look for “wanted” posters and see if anyone is on the lookout for a babysitter.

When you’re marketing your babysitting services, create a Facebook page or website.

You’d be surprised how many people are trying to look for babysitters in your area.

Online Babysitting Jobs

Two popular sites for sitters to sign up with are SitterCity and Care.com.

1. SitterCity

Sittercity

The original sitter site, was started in 2001.

It is available in all 50 U.S. states and features over 6 million babysitters. At SitterCity, you can not only hire out a babysitter, but a nanny/au pair and/or regular childcare too.

To get started with SitterCity, complete your profile and include pertinent information about your past experience, preferences (e.g., non-smoking or smoking house), average hourly rate and availability. You will also be given the option of having SitterCity perform a background check on you (for a small fee).

It is highly recommended that you agree to the background check because that will increase your work requests.

You can also peruse job postings placed by parents and solicit your services via the SitterCity site.

2. Care.com

Care.com

Care.com is a global care site that spans 18 countries and has been around since 2007.

This site has millions of members and offers a range of care services, from childcare to assisted living services.

You can fill out a form with Care.com, which includes creating a detailed profile containing your photo, preferences, experience, skills, hobbies, etc.

Just as with SitterCity, you can use Care.com to look for sitter jobs and have families contact you directly about your services.

Parents and relatives can also leave detailed reviews about your services, rates, skills, etc. If you rack up enough good reviews, your odds of securing steady work will increase.

Monster.com, Craigslist, etc. can also be taken advantage of for listing your babysitting services.

These sites are free to use and are widely viewed.

How to Stand Out as a Babysitter

When there are hundreds or even thousands of sitters to compete against in your neck of the woods, how do get more babysitting jobs?

The answer lies in add-on services and extra/special skills.

Parents are most likely to hire you if you do or know the following:

You can drive.

If you have a car and can use it to drive kids to their soccer matches and piano recitals, you’ll become a valuable asset to parents everywhere.

With SitterCity, you can have your driver’s license verified for an extra fee to ensure that you are legally certified to drive.

You know CPR.

Kids get into all kinds of odd situations, and knowing how to rescue them from injury and/or death is critical when someone leaves their young ones in your care.

To this end, get certified in child CPR and other first aid techniques.

You have early childhood education.

Kids are rarely logical, polite and obedient.

However, you can induce them to become that way, at least for an evening, if you know a little bit about childhood psychology.

Community and online colleges offer different classes in childhood development and psychology, and completing them will definitely make you stand out amongst anxious parents.

You are punctual.

Believe it or not, the single biggest complaint that parents have about babysitters is that they are late.

So, as an up-and-coming babysitter, do your part to arrive on time at your destinations.

You are crafty.

Do you know how to fill an evening with card tricks, painting projects, or an expedition to the local park? Can you pick up and play the latest PC games or discuss cartoon characters?

The more you ‘get’ your clients’ kids, the more likely those clients will be to call you for repeat babysitting.

And it never hurts to be known as the “favorite babysitter” either.

How much money do babysitters make?

Nowadays, the going rate for babysitting services is $15/hour. The days when you would see someone paying $20 for an entire night of babysitting are long gone.

For urban centers and mega cities like New York or San Francisco, it’s common to earn around $20/hour.

Even novice babysitters that have extra skills and training can command rates in the high teens.

The Babysitting Bottom Line

Interacting with children as a side hustle may not be everyone’s cup of tea, but if you like it, the money is certainly waiting for you.

And if you land a babysitting position, do a good job. Take care of your reputation.

And consider your services as a full-blown business.

Even if you’ve outgrown your teen years, you can still continue the babysitting business if you wanted to.

Outdoor Jobs: 40+ Careers in the Great Outdoors

Outdoor jobs are ideal for people who find the 9 to 5 daily grind dreadful.

No one should be stuck in a cubicle doing a job they don’t like.

If you feel like you’d be happier exploring jungles, guiding tourists on off-the-beaten paths, hiking to the peak of the mountains, taking pictures of Mother nature, diving deep to rescue sea creatures, skiing to your heart’s content, or making your life into an adventure (while earning money), then this guide could change your life.

Types of Outdoor Jobs

You’d find two types of outdoor jobs – one that requires a degree, and the other that is skills-based.

When I list the jobs below, I’ll note down if they’re available year-round or seasonal, requirements needed for the job, and income potential.

WILDERNESS OUTDOOR JOBS

The wilderness is any area uncultivated and uninhabited by human beings.

1. Wildland Firefighters

  • Year-round and seasonal job
  • Income: $50,000/year
  • Requires certification

These brave men and women are front and center when forest fire occurs. It’s a pretty dangerous job, but very noble indeed.

2. Wilderness or Backpacking Guide

  • Year-round and seasonal
  • Income: $66,000/year
  • Experience and skill based

This job isn’t for the faint of heart.

Because you’re leading people in uncharted lands, you have to be aware of the terrain, habitat, and everything else about the area you’re backpacking to. Perfect for people with extensive experience hiking, hunting, fishing, and other survival skills.

3. Park ranger

  • Year-round
  • Income: $40,000/year
  • Experience and skill-based job

Park rangers have the same exact job description as wilderness guides above, except the area they’re exploring is contained and safer.

4. Forester

  • Year-round
  • Income: $45,000/year
  • Needs a Bachelor’s degree in Forestry

Foresters manage the growth of trees (and the type of tree species to be planted) in relation to the survival of plant and animal species within a particular forest.

5. Surveyor

  • Year-round
  • Income: $65,000/year
  • Needs a Bachelor’s degree in Mapping/Surveying

As a surveyor, your update boundary lines on sites before construction to prevent possible legal disputes.

6. Environmentalist or Conservation Scientist

  • Year-round
  • Income: $85,000/year
  • Needs a Bachelor’s degree in chemistry, biology, geosciences or any science-related field

Employed by local, state, and federal governments, real estate agencies and other private companies, conservation and environmentalists assess a land and help in creating a preservation plan.

SCIENCE-RELATED OUTDOOR JOBS

Many scientists work in the field, since they study and explore water, land, air, and living things around the country (or sometimes around the world).

Most of the careers in the science industry are high paying outdoor jobs, especially those that require doctorate degrees.

7. Archaeologist

  • Year-round
  • Income: $73,000/year
  • Needs a Bachelor’s degree in archaeology or anthropology

Many kids dream of becoming an archaeologist for excavating and interpreting objects and sites of historical interest and document past human activity.

8. Animal trainer (equestrian, dog, elephant, etc.)

  • Year-round and seasonal
  • Income: $30,000 to $75,000/year
  • Needs a bachelor’s degree (for medical careers like veterinarians)

If you love horses, dogs, elephants, cats, and other animals, you can train them as a profession.

9. Botanist

  • Year-round
  • Income: $68,000/year
  • Needs a degree in botany

Studies plant life and organisms to help with medicine, environmental policy, environment preservation and agriculture.

10. Geologist

  • Year-round
  • Income: $110,000/year
  • Needs a degree in geology

As a geologist, you’d be able to study the earth’s composition, structure, and other physical attributes, such as minerals and rocks.

11. Entomologist

  • Year-round
  • Income: $61,000/year
  • Needs a Doctoral degree in Entomology

Anyone who ever loved creepy crawlies as a child could grow up to become an entomologist and study insects’ behavior, life cycle, ecology, population and classification.

12. Marine ecologist/biologist

  • Year-round
  • Income: $62,000/year
  • Needs a degree in marine biology

This job can be either be in labs or on the field (often underwater or near bodies of water), since the profession deals with marine organisms, marine life and their ecosystems.

13. Environmentalist

  • Year-round and seasonal
  • Income: voluntary to $60,000/year
  • Needs a degree in any environment-related course like biology

You can be an environmentalist and volunteer work for lobbyists and various causes, or take a career as a scientist studying the preservation of natural resources and habitats.

14. Zoologist, wildlife biologist

  • Year-round and seasonal
  • Income: voluntary to $75,000/year
  • Needs a degree in any environment-related course like zoology, wildlife biology

Study animals and other wildlife in their environment and how they interact with other animals within or outside their ecosystems.

15. Volcanologist

  • Year-round
  • Income: $90,000 to $190,000/year
  • Needs a degree in geology, earth science, geophysics and other similar fields.

Studying volcanoes, how they erupt, and collecting samples and data about volcanic activity.

16. Geographer

  • Year-round
  • Income: $40,000 to $77,000/year
  • Needs a degree in geography, statistics or any environmental science course

As a geographer, you study the earth, land, nature and its inhabitants.

17. Ichthyologist

  • Year-round
  • Income: $57,000 to $95,000/year
  • Needs a degree in marine biology, marine ecology, zoology

It’s all about the study of fish, so you should love the sea, ponds, and other bodies of water to study and collect samples. Work can be a mix of lab and the great outdoors.

18. Seismologist

  • Year-round
  • Income: $90,000/year
  • Needs a degree in geophysics or a related area

Seismology is the study of seismic waves: energy waves that are created by earthquakes, volcanic eruption and other events that disrupt the tectonic plates and layers of the earth.

19. Hydrologist

  • Year-round
  • Income: $80,000/year
  • Needs a degree in hydrology, environmental science, geo-science

Hydrologists are experts in water and study flooding, drought, water pollution and other water-related problems.

AGRICULTURE OUTDOOR JOBS

You’d be surprised that these careers are some of the best outdoor jobs that pay well.

20. Winery Jobs

Whether you learn to become a winemaker or a sommelier (wine expert representing the fine-dine restaurants), winery jobs are ideal for those who can’t stand office-based jobs.

Different job titles are available here – with both season and year-round positions.

Pay vary between specialty: harvesters earn $13 to $20 an hour, winemakers can make up to $100k/year, while sommeliers take home up to $75,000 annually.

21. Arborist

  • Year-round and seasonal
  • Income: $48,000/year
  • Needs a certification to handle heavy equipment

As an arborist, you are an expert in cutting trees and trimming other plants to protect power lines, sidewalks, and roads.

22. Agronomist

  • Year-round and seasonal
  • Income: $41,000 to $100,000/year
  • Needs a degree in Agriculture or Food Sciences

Agronomists study different methods plants can be used for food, medicine, and other ways to the human’s advantage. They help in improving crop yield, and plant longevity.

23. Commercial Fisherman

  • Seasonal
  • Income: $30,000 to $80,000/year
  • Certification in commercial fishing and fishing technology.

As a commercial fisherman, you’ll be fishing in order to sell your catch. Some fishermen take months at a time at sea.

24. Farmer

  • Seasonal and year-round
  • Income: $20,000 to $110,000/year
  • Certification in commercial fishing and fishing technology.

Farmers grow crops and take care of animals on farms. You can be employed in a farm all year-round or seasonally. You can also be the owner of the farm and be hands on (or not). These factors, as well as the type of farm you have, will dictate how much you earn.

25. Hunter

  • Seasonal and year-round
  • Income: $17,000 to $50,000/year
  • License to operate hunting trips and skills to lead a team

Professional hunters and trappers are trained to hunt animals, but they earn money mostly by guiding clients on organized hunting expeditions.

26. Livestock Rancher

  • Year-round
  • Income: $30,000 to $100,000/year
  • No formal educational requirement, but managing your own ranch would need local permits

As livestock ranchers, you’d raise and sell sheep, pigs and cows for profit.

27. Beekeeper

  • Seasonal and year-round
  • Income: $20,000 to $80,000/year
  • Beekeeping training (both hands-on and formal courses) is required

Beekeepers take care of bee hives to yield honey and sell other honey byproducts like beeswax.

ARTSY OUTDOOR JOBS

This industry embraces freedom like no other, so the list below is surely just a tip of the iceberg. I guarantee you if you look a lot closer, you’d find outdoor jobs hiding in plain sight in the art world.

28. Outdoor Photographer

  • Seasonal and year-round
  • Income: $25,000 to $110,000/year
  • This is skills-based, so your potential to land a job (or earn big as a freelancer) depends largely on your photography skills

Outdoor photographers may specialize in anything from landscapes, travel, animals and wildlife, news beats, and so on. Most are freelancers, but outdoor photographers can also seek traditional employment with companies like National Geographic (and other magazines around the world).

29. Travel writer or (or travel blogger)

  • Seasonal and year-round
  • Income: from $60,000/year and up
  • This is a skills-based profession. You can take up degrees in Creative Writing, Journalism, English Literature and other similar courses, but your writing skill will probably take you places more than your degree.

As a travel writer, you get to travel to places, restaurants, attractions and other areas and write about it for a magazine, organization, or other companies. Travel bloggers are freelancers that do exactly the same thing as travel writers, but with a different approach to income.

30. Camp jobs

  • Seasonal and year-round
  • Income: $20,000 to $120,000/year
  • Some camp jobs require no formal training, while others (such as a camp doctor or teacher) would need a degree, certification and even license to teach kids

The job will depend largely on what position you applied for at the camp. Examples include camp counselor, camp doctor, cook, lifeguard, groundskeeper, and so on.

31. Map maker (cartographer)

  • Seasonal and year-round
  • Income: $75,000/year
  • Bachelor’s degree in geography or cartography

As a cartographer, you compile geographic data and use this information to create drawings of maps in graphic or digital form.

32.Urban planner (landscape architecture)

  • Year-round
  • Income: $77,000/year
  • Requires a degree in architecture, and state licensing

As an urban planner, you use your knowledge in architecture, landscape design, and city planning to build public parks, streets, building, public transportation systems, and every other aspect of a city.

SPORTS & ADVENTURE JOBS

Many professions in the adventure and sports industry are on the field. You’ll never ever have to work in a cubicle or be drowned in paperwork.

33. Hiking guide

  • Seasonal and year-round
  • Income: $30,000 to $60,000/year
  • No formal education is needed to lead hikes, but extensive experience and local permits are a must

A dream job to hikers, leading people to the most gorgeous trails and mountains. Check out what’s in store for you in the Great Outdoors from companies like YMCA.

34. Running and other sports coach

  • Year-round
  • Income: $45,000 to $60,000/year
  • There is no specific qualifications to become a sports coach, except for knowing the ins and outs of a particular sport (such as boxing). When the job requires teaching, a license may be required.

A sports coach guides athletes to reach their full potential.

35. Local tour guide

  • Year-round
  • Income: $23,000 to $38,000/year
  • You don’t need formal training as a tour guide, but exceptional communication and people skills will give you an advantage in this field.

You can go freelance, employ with a travel agency, or own your business. Whichever route you take, you’ll be taking groups of people on local adventures from sightseeing popular landmarks, jumping from one beer tap to the next, leading off-the-beaten path trails, going on haunted house tour, and so on.

36. Ski or snowboarding instructor

  • Year-round and seasonal
  • Income: $10 to $20 an hour, depending on where you’re teaching (hot spots like the Steamboat Resort in Colorado would bring higher rates)
  • Certifications are required, and the higher certification levels you obtain, the bigger your rates become

If you ever dreamt of living in the mountains and ski, snowboard and play on the snow, you can be an instructor at any ski or snowboarding resort.

37. Surfing, swimming, diving instructor

  • Year-round and seasonal
  • Income: $15,000 to $50,000/year
  • Permits and certifications are needed to be able to teach these activities

The best outdoor jobs is the one where you’re having the most fun. If you’ve always been at-home in the water and has a special relationship with water, you’ll excel as an instructor for diving, swimming or surfing.

38. Lifeguard

  • Year-round
  • Income: $19,000 to $30,000/year
  • Exceptional swimming skills, First Aid, CPR and other life-saving certifications

I intentionally didn’t include this career on #37, since not everyone is up for this challenging, yet fulfilling line of work. As a lifeguard, your role is to save a life.

39. Field jobs in the sports industry

They may not be high paying outdoor jobs, but if you’re into sports and you want to be breathing and living the sport of your choice, explore each sport completely. Examples of these jobs include golf caddy, tennis ball boy, towel givers, and other similar job titles.

There are, of course, higher paid gigs in this industry. Aside from being the athlete, you can be a referee, sports marketer, agent, injury doctor and still be on the field.

40. Yacht and cruise crew

Jobs “on deck” are the same on the yacht and cruise ship. They all work to make sure the trip is “smooth sailing,” whether you’re a waiter, singer, bartender, engineer, and so on.

The main difference is the number of people served during a trip, since a yacht is privately-owned, while a cruise ship is owned by a corporation.

Your Future with an Outdoor Job

You see, there is no shortage of outdoor careers for you to explore.

You just have to find your own path that would best fit your interest, educational background, training and preference.

How to Land a Video Game Writing Job

If you have a knack for writing on top of having a genuine love for all things video games, why not consider looking at video game writing jobs and combining your skills and passion?

The gaming industry has been steadily growing with the improvement of technology. Immersive gaming, esports, multifunctional video consoles, livestreaming, and mobile gaming are all projected to grow this year and beyond.

The global gaming market is expected to be worth $159.3 billion dollars, even in the midst of a worldwide pandemic. By 2023, it is expected to breach the $200 billion mark.

With this growth in the gaming industry comes a growth in jobs in the industry, including video game writing.

Today, we’ll take a look at the two types of video game writing jobs, how to get these jobs, and what it takes to do these jobs successfully.

Two Types of Video Game Writing Jobs

Many writers would agree that as much as there are different kinds of writing jobs out there both online and IRL, there are also different writing specializations to fit anyone’s skill.

If you dig into the writing careers available in the video game industry, you’d see that the opportunities are mostly divided into two:

  • Writing FOR video games. These writers are involved in the development of the video game itself. These writers are awesome storytellers and would excel in adding words, stories, expressions to 3D graphics of the game.
  • Writing ABOUT video games. The other type of video game writing is from the perspective of a gamer or someone observing a gamer.

Both types of writing would require you to play as many video games as you can and learn about them as much as you can. If you’re not passionate or knowledgeable enough about video games, it’s going to show in your writing.

Jobs That Involve Writing FOR Video Games

If you want to be part of the team developing video games, writing for video games is the path you want to be on.

If employed with just one company, the average video game writer’s salary is $75,000 to 80,000 per year. Of course, studios with higher budgets tend to pay higher than average.

What tools will you need?

Story-based games can be exceptionally complicated with near-infinite possibilities of scripts and gameplay, depending on what the gamer chooses in the game.

  • Understanding how strings work. Scriptwriting a video game isn’t like any kind of writing. You’d have to collaborate with multiple talented people when writing a “text snippet,” or what game programmers know as a “string.” This string is saved in a text database, which everyone from designer, coder, writer, and even video game testers will use to perfect the game.
  • Knowing the ins and outs of gameplay. As a gamer, you need to know the strengths and weaknesses of your players. You know that the options given to your player, usually called “goals” or “missions,” are what lead you to the plot of a story. This type of skill cannot be learned by the book; it’s something you learn and experience from years worth of gaming to be able to get the point of a story across with the player and game mechanics in mind.
  • Practice with tools. Sites like Twine or Inform are great resources for you to use when practicing how to write creative non-linear fiction. There’s also an app called Episode that brings your story to life with ready-made graphics.
  • Learn the types of video game content you’ll write. You’re going to be training yourself with new ways of writing. For example:
    • Flowcharts – These make it easy for you to visualize every possible option allowed to the player.
    • Side quests/missions – This goes beyond the main story and may lead to a totally different story altogether.
    • Character dialogues – You’ll work on the player dialogues (which would have multiple variations at a time) and dialogues of characters the player will interact with inside the game.
    • Narrations and cut scenes – These sequences are often inserted before and after a level or a mission.
    • Final storyboard – If you have experience with scriptwriting in films and TV shows, this is probably the most familiar task you’ll work on. This is only written once all other content has been created since it will include every plot twist and gameplay from beginning to end.

1. Narrative Designer

Narrative designing is a mix of game designing and writing where you come up with the foundational story, subplots, character bios and backstories, general lore, and everything in between.

It also falls on the narrative designer to document game worlds, levels, missions, quests, and the actions a player can take.

Overall, a narrative designer develops a story experience that a player should have and presents it to a team of graphic designers, animators, sound engineers, and others involved in game development.

You’re most likely going to work on a particular game on a per-project basis.

If you’re serious about pursuing this career path, there are courses offered in colleges, universities, and online schools like Coursera and

2. Scriptwriter

The focus of a game scriptwriter is the dialogue by the characters. The main responsibility of the scriptwriter is to ensure that the dialogue at any point in the game adheres to the game narrative.

They usually write in flowcharts to make sure they have scripts for every possible action done by the player and every possible scenario that results from that action.

It involves less interaction with your colleagues who are involved in the mechanics and gameplay. You’re more likely to work with the game director or probably even the narrative designer, who would be checking your progress and guiding you until you complete the project.

Jobs That Involve Writing ABOUT Video Games

On the other hand, if you want to write from an outsider’s perspective, that is, as someone who plays and enjoys video games, there are plenty of opportunities to write about these video games.

Think contributors to Gamespot, 1Up, Polygon, and other similar gaming sites.

Most of the time, these writers are gamers themselves, which makes them quite the pro when it comes to writing about video games.

Here are writing gigs that you might be interested in.

3. Write news and previews about upcoming video games

Use your writing skills to spread news and updates about soon-to-be-released video games.

No opinions needed here yet, so just pull out your 4Ws and 1H (who, what, where, why, and how), reporting news as they come in.

Previews are also made available by video game companies to the right writers (i.e., the popular ones) to garner publicity for their games.

4. Write reviews of recently released video games

Reviews are more personal.

You’d have to play the video game and experience the story firsthand before you can pinpoint the strengths and weaknesses of a particular game.

There’s a special kind of writing skill to become a critic. Google the late, great John Peter Bain, more popularly known as ‘TotalBiscuit’ to know if you’ve got what it takes to become a video game reviewer.

5. Write tutorials about a particular video game

Game tutorials are challenging to write because you’d have to be a phenomenal gamer, or involved in the production of that game to be able to release a tutorial quickly after the release of a game.

If you’re not in a rush and prefer to write “the go-to tutorial of all tutorials,” then it’s totally up to you.

6. Write strategy guides for video games

Strategy guides are more focused on particular levels or scenarios in the game.

Players can’t get that all-important power up? Or can’t defeat a specific boss?

Help them do it.

Create a strategy guide for them and maybe even share some cheat codes to help other players just like you to complete that game.

As players would likely be searching online articles, it helps to be familiar with SEO so that your strategy guide comes up when players search the right keywords.

Work For a Company Or Go Freelance?

The cool thing about writing previews, news, reviews, and tutorials of a game is that you can eventually be your own boss by starting a blog and generating income from it, starting your own YouTube channel, writing an e-book, and following other passive income generating techniques.

Or you can find an online magazine like Gamespot and apply to become a video game writer.

You’d be surprised just how many websites are trying to get a piece of the gaming industry reporting pie.

If you land a job with any of these gaming media, expect an average salary of $70,000 per year.

Expanding Your Skill Beyond Video Game Writing Jobs

The video game designer job market is expected to grow by double digits over the next five years. Imagine how many games are scheduled to be developed, released, and played in that time.

The amazing thing about writing for the video game industry is that they are open to people wearing multiple hats, especially those wanting to make money playing video games.

A game designer can be the scriptwriter, the scriptwriter can be a game programmer, and so on. If you’re already a part of the industry, take this opportunity to learn other skills.

Not only will expanding your skillset help you become an inch closer to a video game director job (if you wanted to), but you’re also increasing your value to an employer.

Combine your passion for writing with a live stream, and you’ve got an excellent way to make money on Twitch as well.

Does being a video game writer sound exciting to you? Which one of these writing jobs interest you the most? Tell us in the comments!

86 Places Where Kids Eat Free in 2020

If you’re a family with small kids and you’re trying to cut back on expenses, you’d be surprised that a bit of planning and choosing restaurants with “kids eat free here” programs can quickly make a dent on your savings.

This is especially true if you eat out more than twice a week.

How do kids eat free?

Kids eat free programs are often for children ages 12 and below.

There are common features of these programs, including:

  • Most restaurants that give freebies to kids only make the deal available once a week.
  • National chains do not have uniform offers. An Applebee’s near you might offer the kids-free-meals on Mondays, but the one located at the next town does it during Sundays.
  • Offers cannot be combined with other promos.
  • There must be a paying adult with the child.
  • Most free kids meals are supposed to be ordered from the kid’s menu
  • Proof of age may be required in some locations.

Free Kids Meals by Day-of-the-Week

Now that you have an idea of the basic rules, let’s check out what’s available.

Kids Eat Free on Mondays

1. Arooga’s Grille House & Sports Bar: Kids 12 and under get to eat free every Monday, as long as an adult purchases a meal.

2. Cinzetti’s: Kids under 12 eat free between 5 to 9 pm on Mondays and Tuesdays. Proof of age may be required. Only 2 kids free per adult.

3. Cody’s Original Roadhouse: Kids 10 years old and under eat free here on Monday and Tuesdays. Limited to 2 kids per paying adult entree.

4. Golden Corral: Kids 10 and younger eat free Mondays from 5 to 9 pm

5.Norms: Every Monday from noon to 10pm, guests 10 and under can get one FREE JR. Entrée from the Kid’s Menu with each adult entree purchased. Dine-in only.

6. Planet Sub: Kids get a free sub any time on Mondays, at the main Kansas branch. One free kids’ meal for each paying adult.

7. Romano’s Macaroni Grill: Kids 12 and under get a free meal with the purchase of an adult entrée. Valid on Monday and Tuesday.

8. Spaghetti Warehouse: Not technically free, but still a good deal. When you buy one adult entree at Spaghetti Warehouse on Mondays, pay only $1.99 for one kid’s entree.

9. T.G.I.Friday’s: Visit here Mondays or Tuesdays to get your child’s meal free for every paying adult.

10. Woody’s BBQ: Kids 10 and younger eat for free every Monday, from 3pm until closing.

Kids Eat Free on Tuesdays

11. Atlanta Bread: A kid can have a free meal every Monday 4pm to closing with adult meal purchased.

12. Back Yard Burgers: Not only does BackYard Burgers have an awesome ‘No Kids Get Hungry’ program, they also have a free kiddie meal Tuesdays with purchase of an adult combo meal.

13. Beef O’Brady’s: Kids receive a free meal on Tuesdays from 5 to 9 pm with the purchase of an adult meal.

14. Bennigan’s: After 4 pm every Tuesday, kids (12 or under) eat free when you purchase an adult entree.

15. Black Eyed Pea: Buy one adult entree and get one item free from the kid’s menu. Offer valid Tuesdays from 5 pm to closing.

16. Bob Evans: Every Tuesday is Family Night at Bob Evans Restaurants from 4 p.m. – close. One kid gets a free meal per adult meal purchased.

17. Carrows Restaurants: Kids 10 and under eat free on Tuesdays from 11am until close. Up to two kids meals per paid adult meal.

18. Chevy’s Fresh Mex: One child can choose from the kid menu for $1 with every paying adult. Valid all day on Tuesday.

19. Chompie’s: Kids (10 and under) eat free all day on Tuesdays.

20. Denny’s: Kids eat dinner free at Denny’s on Tuesdays from 4 – 10 pm. Up to two free kid’s entrées from the kid’s menu per one adult entrée purchase of $6.00 or more.

21. Famous Dave’s: Kids 12 and under eat free all day on Tuesdays. (Some locations may charge $0.99 for kids meals)

22. Fazoli’s: Not free, but any kids meals from the menu is only 99 cents every Tuesday nights from 5 until 8pm.

23. Johnny Rockets: From 4 to 8 p.m. every Tuesdays and Wednesdays, get a free meal with the purchase of an adult entrée and drink.

24 . Lone Star Steakhouse: Kids eat free all day on Mondays, Tuesdays and Wednesdays. Up to 2 free kids’ meals with the purchase of an adult meal.

25. Marie Callender’s Restaurant and Bakery: Kids ages 12 and under eat free with the purchase of an adult entrée.

26. Moe’s Southwest Grill: One free kids’ meal per paying adult.

27. Ponderosa Steakhouse: For every adult entree purchased from 4 – 9 pm on Tuesday nights, you get two free kid’s meals.

28. Pizza Street: Free cheese pizza meal for kids 10 or younger per paying adult.

29. Red Brick Pizza: Buy one adult entree on Tuesday to get a kid’s meal for free.

30. Romano’s Macaroni Grill: Kids ages 12 and under get a free meal with the purchase of an adult entrée.

31. Ruby Tuesday: On Tuesdays after 5 p.m., 1 child per paying adult gets a free meal

32. Shari’s: Up to two free kid’s meals per adult entrée, valid Tuesdays from 10am-11pm.

33. UNO Pizzeria & Grilll: 1 free kiddie meal for kids aged 12 and younger every Tuesdays with the purchase of an adult meal.

Kids Eat Free on Wednesdays

34. Buffalo Wild Wings: On Wednesday nights from 4 to 10pm, any entree from the kid’s menu is only $1.99. It’s not free, but it’s cheap!

35. East Coast Wings: Kids get to eat free per adult entree every Wednesday from 3:30 p.m. to close.

36. Firehouse Subs: Visit from 5 to 8pm Wednesdays and your kid can get a free kids’ meal for each adult combo meal purchased. Up to 2 kids per 1 adult.

37. Friendly’s: Score kid’s meals for just $1.99 all day on Wednesdays. Or if you can visit after 4pm, kid’s meals are free with every purchase of an adult meal.

38. Gatti Town: A kid (10 and younger) could get a free kid’s buffet when you buy one adult buffet meal.

39. Jason’s Deli: Purchase one adult entree to get one free kid’s meal.

40. Jeffery’s Sports Grill: Kids eat free (one kid per paying adult) any time on Wednesdays.

41. Little Bitty Burger Barn: Kids under 10 eat free all day Wednesdays. Up to 2 kids’ meals for every full-priced adult meal.

42. Luby’s Cafeteria: On Wednesdays 4pm onwards, kids under 10 eat for free.

43. Logan’s Roadhouse:Kids ages 12 and under eat free on Wednesdays with the purchase of an adult entrée.

44. Qdoba Mexican Grill: Kids get to eat free with the purchase of an adult enchilada entrée.

Kids Eat Free on Thursdays

45. Captain D’s Seafood Kitchen:Buy one adult meal here on Thursdays and get up to two free kid’s meals.

46. Chartroose Caboose: Kids receive free meal all day on Thursdays with purchase of an adult meal worth $8 or more.

47. C.B. & Potts Restaurant & Brewery: Not free, but kids eat for only $1 with purchase of adult entrée during Thursdays.

48. Old Country Buffet: On Thursdays, kids (from 4 to 11 years old) eat for only $1.99 with the purchase of an adult buffet.

49. Piccadilly: Thursday All-Day, up to 2 kids 12 and under can enjoy $1.99 meals with an adult purchase.

50. Ryan’s: Thursdays is Family Night at Ryan’s, so kids eat for only $1.99 per adult meal purchased. Visit from From 4 to 8:30 p.m.

51. Red Robin: This used to be free, but the promo now has $1.99 kid’s meal for every adult entree purchased.

52. Salsarita’s: Get one free meal for your child with the purchase of $5 or more adult Mexican entrée; dine in only

53. Zaxby’s: Up to 2 kids under 10 eat FREE on Thursdays with the purchase of an adult meal

Kids Eat Free on Fridays

Fridays is usually a busy day for restaurants, which is why most deals are on off-peak days like Tuesdays and Wednesdays.

More deals pop up on the weekends, since families usually eat out on either Saturday and Sunday.

What better way to lure families with young kids to their restaurants, right?

Kids Eat Free on Saturdays

54. Maggiano’s Little Italy: Kids under 5 get to eat free Italian food all day on Saturday.

55. Margaritas Mexican Restaurant: On Saturdays, visit their East Hartford (CT) and Mystic (CT) locations to receive two free kid’s meals for each adult meal you order.

56. Qdoba Mexican Grill: Buy an adult entrée to get a free kid’s meal. Valid usually during Saturday lunch and dinner, but may vary by location.

57. Steak ‘n Shake: Every Saturday, get one free kids plate for every $9 spent. No drinks and shakes included, sorry. Dine-in only.

58. Texas Land and Cattle: If you buy one adult entree on Saturday afternoons from 11 am – 4 pm, you can get up to two free kid’s meals for free.

59. Which Wich Superior Sandwiches: Buy a 7” sandwich and get a kid’s meal for just 99 cents. Valid for kids 12 years old or younger.

Kids Eat Free on Sundays

60. Arriba Mexican Grill: One free kids’ meal per paying adult valid anytime on Sundays.

61. Blue Mesa Grill: Eat brunch here from 9am to 3pm on Sundays and your kid (5 years old or younger) gets a free meal.

62. Baja Fresh: If you buy an adult entree at this Mexican grill during Sundays, you get a free kid’s meal.

63. Dickey’s Barbecue Pit: Kids (12 or younger) eat free all day on Sundays (drinks included) with the purchase of a $10 adult meal.

64. Hooters: If you’re after some Hooters wings, go on Sundays 11am to 11pm for free kid’s meals

65. Jose Pepper’s: Kids get to eat for free all Sunday at Jose Pepper’s.

66. Moe’s Southwest Grill: Visit Moe’s Sunday anytime from 4pm until closing, buy one adult entree and get one free kid’s meal.

67. Slim Chicken’s: Slim Chicken’s for free meals for kids aged 10 and younger is valid every Sunday.

68. Souper! Salad!: On Sundays kids age 4 and younger eat for free with a paying adult.

69. Tony Roma’s: Buy an adult entree and get one free kid’s meal for kids age 12 and younger.

Everyday Free Kiddie Meal

70. Bruster’s Real Ice Cream: As long as your kid is shorter than 40 inches, they can receive one free baby cone. You don’t even have to purchase anything.

71. Cafe Rio: Valid daily, kids ages 6 and under get a free Nino Quesadilla with the purchase of an adult entrée.

72. Carrows: During weekdays (Monday-Friday), one kid below 10 years old can eat for free after 4 pm (for each paying adult).

73. Cici’s: Kids (3 years old or younger) can eat free when you purchase a full-price adult entree.

74. Culver’s: Kids 12 and under get a free frozen custard with the purchase of a meal

75. Fricker’s: Kids eat free all day, every day with the purchase of an adult entrée.

76. IHOP: Usually every spring, kids get to eat free every day from 4 to 9 p.m. with purchase of adult entree.

77. Holiday Inn: Up to four kids 12 and under eat free any time of the day in any Holiday Inn on-site restaurant.

78. O’Charley’s: Kids eat free every day with the purchase of an adult entree.

79. On The Border: Kids receive a free sundae with meal purchase.

80. Texas de Brazil: With a purchase of an adult meal, kids 2 years old and below eat free; kids 3 to 5 eat for just $5, while big kids from 6 to 12 years old dine for half the adult price.

Depends on Location

81. IKEA: At some IKEA locations, kids (12 and under) can receive up to 2 kiddie meals with purchase of one adult entree worth $3.99 or more. Usually available on Tuesdays.

82. Skyline ChiliLocations vary, but if offered in a location near you, one free kids meal for every adult meal purchase of $5 or more. Only for dine-ins.

Occasional

83. Chick-fil-A: Every Monday night in July, kids can eat free from 5pm-7:30 pm. Receive one FREE Kid’s Meal per child 12 and under. No purchase necessary.

84. Godfather’s Pizza: During the all-you-can-eat family buffet, kids usually eat free.

Free Kids Meals via Rewards or Club Membership

85. Chili’s– When you buy an adult entree, you get one free kid’s entree.

86. Souplantation: All Club Veg members get a free kids meal.

The Bottom Line

If you don’t need a long list of restaurants (and would rather pick your family’s favorite ones), then make sure you have access to their Facebook page, Twitter, or website for double-checking availability of offers.

For kids who are celebrating their birthdays soon, there are also restaurants that give out free stuff on your birthday.

Be sure to check out this list of 20 ways to get free kids books by mail.

5 Ways to Get Paid to Be an Audience Member

Wouldn’t it be fantastic to get paid to be an audience member?

We see them all on TV. The crowd seems to be genuinely happy about being there.

Have you ever wondered how audience members of talk shows and sitcoms get the gig?

Do you wish to participate in being part of the live audience while filming your favorite show?

Whether you’d just like to experience it once it your life, or if you want to add extra income by doing this once or twice a week, read on for all the information you’d need to explore this gig.

Can Anyone Become an Audience Member?

The answer to this question is: Yes, anyone can become an audience member.

However, you won’t get paid to be an audience member on popular shows.

Here’s the thing:

Popular TV shows fill up seats months ahead. They also do not pay audience members (at least, not anymore), but give away freebies and prizes.

Oprah (when her show was still on) was legendary about her Favorite Things Giveaways: from diamond watches to all-expenses-paid cruises. And who can ever forget about the brand new Pontiac G6 given to ALL 276 members of her studio audience in 2004?

For these popular shows, you can line up during filming days, but there’s no guarantee you can be chosen to fill-in for other chosen audience members who didn’t show up.

Shows that are not popular enough to fill in the seats allocated within their studios still rely on paying audience members to watch.

How to Find Paid Audience Member Gigs

If your goal is to join the crowd of your favorite show, the easiest way to find paid audience member gigs is to visit the show’s website. Look for a button that says “tickets,” which most likely include details on how to get them and other information.

If you’re here to earn some side cash, no matter which sitcom, talk show, or other live shows, check out these 5 resources:

1. TVTaping.com

The shows listed here are neatly arranged, so you can quickly see which of them are currently giving away tickets (and those on hiatus).

There’s a mix of paid and unpaid gigs. Beat Bobby Flay pays $60, while AOL Build Show pays $30 to $50 (depending on who are the show’s guest).

2. OnSetProductions.com

The shows are arranged by date and location, which makes it easy to filter based on your availability and which shows are near you.

Click one of the shows and you’ll see complete details, including number of hours required to be on the show, transportation availability, and amount of cash incentives.

For example, The People’s Court pays $70 after taping at its Stamford, CT studio.

What I like best about this site is that they also list a month or two of a show’s schedule, so you’d be able to adjust your availability if necessary.

3. Backstage.com

This casting call site has been serving up actors and actresses with audition listings for years.

If you dig deeper, you’ll see that some casting coordinators post audience member gigs here too.

An example gig looks like this: MTV TRL seeks paid audience member at New York Times Square Location, Thursdays in September from 3PM to 6PM.

Payment is $40 after filming.

My problem with Backstage.com is that their search feature isn’t that accurate.

Finding “paid audience member” results also include other listings, which is quite disappointing since the site does offer a comprehensive and up-to-date list of gigs in the entertainment industry.

4. StandingRoomOnly.TV

You’ll need to register to access the casting lists on SRO, but they do have a lot of paid ones.

Instead of a gig-based fee, Standing Room Only lists paid audience member gigs with an hourly fee, so you’ll see listings with $10 to $20, then details for how long each show will be.

5. 1iota.com

If you’re after the experience and don’t really care if you get paid to be an audience member of your favorite show, 1iota.com is where tickets to all other popular shows are found.

The process of reserving a seat varies by show, so better check out each one.

Some examples of popular shows include: American Idol, Conan, Dancing With the Stars, Dr. Phil, Jeopardy, Jimmy Kimmel Live, So You Think You Can Dance, The Ellen Show, The Late Late Show with James Corden, The Price is Right, The Voice, Wheel of Fortune, America’s Got Talent, Good Morning America, Late Night with Seth Meyers, The Dr. Oz Show, The Tonight Show starring Jimmy Fallon, The View, The Wendy Williams Show, and TODAY, among others.

Sometimes, you might find a paid gig, but it’s rare since the roster of shows listed here are in-demand throughout the year.

Important things to Know to Get Paid to be an Audience Member

Before seeking out tickets to shows, you should take note of the following:

  • Age requirement: Most TV shows require adults (18 and above) for audience members, but family-oriented shows may allow kids (from 10 to 18). If you plan to go with your kid or younger family member, make sure to check a show’s age requirement before making a reservation.
  • Location: While TV shows usually have their headquarters already in place, some shows can switch locations every now and then. Conan tapes Monday through Thursday at Warner Brothers Studios in Burbank, California), they may be some instances where the show would travel to another city, or even country.
  • Dress code: Most shows require its audience members to dress business casual. Some are particular with colors (no busy patterns or neon), while others just list clothes that are not allowed (shorts, tank tops, short skirts, hats, etc.). Of course, during themed shows, you might see specific requests such as ‘nightclub wardrobe,’ ‘Halloween costume,’ and so on.

Things to Expect on the Day of Filming

  • Arrive on time. The show isn’t going to wait for your arrival. In most cases, you’ll be in line for a couple of hours. Plus, almost every TV show have standby tickets given to other people, which means it wouldn’t be surprising to be bumped off your slot by other audience members.
  • Bring your ID with you. Most of these tickets are non-transferable, so they’ll be checking your identity before entry.
  • Food isn’t allowed inside. Better eat a big meal before call time, unless of course food is included as an incentive. Your best bet is a water bottle, which you can keep inside your bag.
  • Be ready to laugh or clap your heart out. If you’re really not a fan of the show, laughing along with the show’s host, or clapping every time you’re required to can be taxing. You have to be mentally prepared to make your laughing or clapping believable, since show coordinators can easily kick off audience members between takes.
  • Audience warm-up. Whether you’re watching a sitcom or a talk show, someone (a crew, comedian, singer, or another type of entertainer) will wake up the audience and give the space a happier vibe. Watch out for some last-minute reminders as well.

Generally, audience members are paid at the end of filming. No need to wait for checks, since pay is almost always in cash.

For long-standing shows, “seniors” (paid audience members who have been there several times) may be asked to return at a particular date.

This already removes the entire process of reserving your slot.

So if you’re banking on these gigs to bring you extra income, your goal is to become a senior audience member.

Exploring the Entertainment Industry

Joining a live show and getting paid to do so is a quick gig many people would choose to do than be stuck in an office from 9 to 5.

It’s as close as you can get to getting paid to watch TV or getting paid to watch movies.

It’s a cool way to make some easy money if you’re in Los Angeles, New York, or another area where they’re hiring.

Some people even turn this into a temp job until something better arrives.

If you’re interested in other side hustle in the entertainment industry, check out this post I wrote about becoming a movie extra or this guide on how to earn big money as a voice actor.

Get Paid to Drink Beer: Is Everybody’s Dream Job Legit?

How awesome would it be to get paid to drink beer?

How many times have you or your drinking buddies joked around about quitting your day job if an opportunity to earn from drinking all day arises?

Well, if you love drinking beer, studying the intricate process and rich history of brewing, visiting all the taprooms near you, and discovering new craft beer in the market, then you might just find ways to earn some side cash from it.

Note: Don’t quit your day job just yet. This dream job of many isn’t so easy to land.

Today, let’s look at some of the ways you can earn money from drinking beer and how you can go about finding these jobs.

Traditional Beer-Drinking Jobs

1. Professional Beer Taster

Yes, this is a real job.

A professional beer taster goes around tasting all kinds of beer, noting their taste, texture, flavor, smell, and other details, and judging them based on a certain set of criteria.

Beer and ale makers employ them to sample their latest recipes. Pub owners also employ them to taste beers from different producers, more recently local breweries and taprooms, to get recommendations for beers to serve at their pubs.

A bachelor’s degree is preferred, but not required. On the other hand, getting certified as a beer taster can give you an edge in terms of getting the job. Among the most popular certification programs are the Cicerone Certification Program and The Beer Academy Accredited Beer Sommelier Scheme.

It’s more important to have a refined palate, extensive knowledge of the different types of beers and how they are produced, and the ability to report your findings in a detailed, comprehensive, and unbiased manner.

The best places to find these jobs are the job boards at breweries you’re interested to work with. General job boards such as Indeed or FlexJobs may also have some listings for this type of job. This type of job is normally listed as Professional Beer Taster, Beer Sommelier, or a Beer Quality Technician.

2. Sensory Lab Technician

Sensory analysis sounds a lot like a fancy name for “taste testing,” but it’s really not.

It involves examining beer products’ look and color, aroma, mouthfeel and texture, and of course, the taste.

These attributes are a result of the unique combination of the thousands of chemical compounds in the beer. A sensory lab technician is involved in developing programs and methodologies, as well as determining just the right ingredients and processes to get that unique combination right consistently in every brew.

Thus, to be a sensory lab technician, not only do you need to have a discerning palate but you also need to know your chemistry.

A bachelor’s degree is usually required, as well as laboratory experience.

Craft breweries hire sensory lab technicians to maintain the quality of their brews, and your local craft breweries are the best places to find these jobs. It’s possible to find it listed in general job boards as Brewery Lab Technician, Sensory Analyst, or Sensory Scientist.

3. Brewery Representative

Want to get paid to drink beer and to travel?

Being a brewery representative may just be the job for you.

A brewery rep, as they’re sometimes called, represent the brand and work with wholesalers and retailers of the beers to increase distribution, visibility, and sales. They maintain inventory levels and make sure that their products are displayed prominently at points of sale.

Brewery representatives are also in charge of strengthening brand presence in a certain area. They usually host beer tastings and other events to promote their beers. Essentially, they get paid to host events that other beer enthusiasts pay to get into. Now, isn’t that a hoot?

A bachelor’s degree is preferred, but not required. Experience in sales and marketing is more important, as well as being personable and a great communicator. Willingness to travel is also a must; brewery representatives may be assigned locally but may also be assigned to other locations.

Medium to large brewery companies hire brewery representatives to spread the word about their beers and close wholesale and retail deals for their beers. You may also find listings in general job boards as Brewery Sales Representative or Beer Sales Representative.

4. Beer Auditor

Also called liquor auditor or alcohol compliance auditor, beer auditors buy beer from medium to big chain retailers, such as supermarkets, grocery stores, liquor stores, gas stations, convenience stores, etc.

The objective is to check whether cashiers ask for ID when customers buy beer, as they’re legally required to do. Stores are concerned about their reputation, and more importantly, about their alcohol license.

The job involves being assigned to nearby stores, blending in as a customer, and buying beer. Simple, right?

You’ll need to note what time of day you came in, which cashier handled the purchase, and you need to keep your receipt as proof that you completed the assignment to get paid and so that you can get reimbursed for your beer. Hooray for free beer!

Stores don’t directly hire beer auditors, and neither do beer or liquor companies. To work as a beer auditor, you’d need to join an auditing company. The following are some of the companies that periodically offer beer auditor assignments.

 

5. Secret Shopper

Thanks to apps like Secret Hopper and PintPass, ordinary folks like you and me can now visit any brewery locally and from other towns, get a free flight for doing so, or paid cash after a brewery visit.

Note that these won’t get you rich, or will not substitute a proper day job, but remains a cool and fun experience to try out new beer and ale in exchange for free beer and some change.

Get Paid to Drink Beer with Secret Hopper

“Secret Hopper” was named after the long-time side hustle “secret shopping” wherein you’d shop at stores or dine in restaurants then grade everything from customer service to food presentation, shelf display, and so on.

Because employees of an assigned store or restaurants are not informed about secret shopping assignments, the companies use the feedback gathered from secret shoppers to improve their product or service.

Secret Hopper works the same way, except that “hoppers” visit breweries exclusively.

To become a secret hopper, you need to submit an application by filling out a form.

The form includes a couple of questions asking for essay-like answers. Write well, since the more detailed your story is, the more likely you’d be selected for Secret Hop assignments.

If selected, you’ll visit the brewery, sample the products, and then fill up a questionnaire along with your receipt. You’ll receive payment via PayPal after a couple of days for your “work.”

The standard Secret Hop pays $20, which often covers the cost of a flight and pint.

However, if you’re lucky, you can be assigned with a “hop” that includes free dinner or higher compensation.

Secret Hopper encourages breweries to sign up and “be hopped” for a fee.

Get Paid to Drink Beer with PintPass

PintPass is a cool little app that serves as a directory of local breweries.

There are over 6,500 breweries on the PintPass list, which means it can be pretty useful even if you’re not looking to earn money on the side.

However, unlike Secret Hopper that is paid by breweries for much-needed feedback about their business, PintPass uses their own money to pay for the feedback that a user gives them when they visit a brewery.

Ryan Rickert, the founder of PintPass, reportedly wanted to improve the industry. Since there are still very few data sets available for the craft beer industry, the PintPass app helps in capturing this data from real beer lovers across the country.

Anyone can download the app, check-in to a brewery, and fill out one survey at each brewery you visit.

Once you have over $10 in your account, you can redeem your beer money, which will be credited into your virtual MasterCard.

You can also gift your credits to anyone via the Text-A-Beer tab in the app.

How Much Can You Get Paid to Drink Beer?

The actual amount varies per position.

Professional beer tasters can expect to get paid around $45,000 per year on average, while sensory lab technicians make around $34,000 per year on average. Brewery representatives get an average annual salary of $37,000, plus they may earn commissions when they open new accounts or expand an existing wholesale deal.

Beer auditors and secret shoppers get paid per output, so take as many assignments as you can to maximize your earnings.

Of course, with all of them, you get to drink free beer!

Getting Paid to Drink Beer is Real

You shouldn’t be surprised that you can get paid to drink beer.

There are much weirder ways to earn money these days, like selling your hair or breast milk, or these 10 quick and weird money-making side gigs.

As you can imagine, the demand for full-time beer tasting jobs is high and there are very few opportunities available.

It’s a legitimate career, but it’s safe to assume that beer tasting jobs have low attrition rates.

If you do go with the beer auditor or secret shopper route, don’t expect to turn this into a full-time job. Make it a fun way to earn a little with beer you’re already going to try anyway.

Poshmark Review: How to Get the Most for Your Clothes

This Poshmark review is for anyone who has Marie Kondo’d their wardrobe, garage, shoe closet and other storage recently.

If you’re not going to give your old clothes away to charity, sell them instead of storing them somewhere you won’t see again in years.

Your pockets would love you!

You’d be surprised at how much money you can raise during your monthly or annual cleaning.

To make your online selling as hassle-free as can be, mobile apps like Poshmark are efficient tools. These apps not only serve as the marketplace platform where you’d buy other people’s clothes and sell your own, some apps also have added features like taking photos, documenting, or recording items.

What is Poshmark?

The Poshmark app is a social commerce marketplace where you can sell clothes, shoes, bags, and other fashion accessories online for cash.

Launched in 2011 by Manish Chandra, the Redwood City, California-based company now has 4 million sellers with an accumulated $1 billion+ worth of items sold since its inception.

Selling via Poshmark is super easy. Just download and open the Poshmark app (it’s available on Android and iPhone), take a photo of the item you want to sell, write a description, set the price, and it’s up for sale.

The cool thing about Poshmark is that it was developed originally as an app, which means many of its features run smoothly even when you’re on the go.

Poshmark listing

Compare this to online shops that you only access via mobile browsers and you’ll see what I mean.

However, Poshmark app does have a desktop version, in case you prefer to work in an office.

eBay vs. Poshmark

If you’re going to sell items online, you’d probably be thinking, “why not on eBay?”

eBay is without question the oldest (and still standing) online marketplace today. When it comes to second-hand items, eBay lets you sell and buy stuff on a national level. Its counterpart is probably Craigslist, which has a sub-category for every city across the country.

Poshmark began with people selling used items, similar to eBay, but has since expanded to include new items as well.

Pros and Cons of eBay

  • eBay has been around forever. While it can still have some glitches, these are often scheduled and announced.
  • eBay and PayPal are under the same company, so expect its main payment gateway to be secure.
  • Many payment and shipping options
  • Everyone knows eBay

eBay’s customer support isn’t the best (especially when you’re handling refunds).

Because of its massive reach and millions of items being sold at any given time, eBay’s app can be clunky.

If you’re only planning to sell clothes, eBay is definitely too much for your needs.

Pros and Cons of Poshmark

  • Poshmark was built specifically for mobile use, so the Poshmark app will definitely appeal to people on-the-go
  • The social aspect of Poshmark means your listings are easily shareable inside or outside the Poshmark app
  • Poshmark lets you list an item for sell by simply taking a photo of the item, then adding a description
  • Poshmark is exclusive to fashion items, so you are 100% sure of the target market

The main problem with Poshmark is the high shipping fees, which doesn’t really do anybody good (whether you’re the seller or buyer).

Poshmark Fees vs eBay

On eBay, you don’t pay anything if the item isn’t sold. eBay gets a 8.75% cut of the final selling price, plus an extra 4% if the item is priced $50 to $1,000.

Poshmark gets a 20% cut on items over $15, while a flat rate of $2.95 for any item below $15. You only pay Poshmark fees once you stuff gets sold.

Notable Poshmark Features

As you can see, the Poshmark fees aren’t really that friendly to sellers, but sellers still stick to the Poshmark fees because of the creative ways of selling, and the perks given to Posh Ambassadors and Posh Affiliates.

Aside from having your own online “storefront” on Poshmark, sellers also benefit from these features:

  • Posh Authenticate – Buyers prefer to shop used, branded items at the Poshmark app, mainly because the company guarantees items first. Whenever someone purchases a luxury item, it gets sent to Poshmark headquarters first where the item will be inspected and tagged as authentic. Only then will Poshmark send the item to the buyer. If it fails, buyers are refunded their money.
  • Posh Bundles – The flat lay generation of Instagrammers have definitely inspired online sellers to step up their game when it comes to showcasing products for sale. The Poshmark app lets you bundle items into one purchase, which means you can easily “style” your items for sale.
  • Posh Parties – Poshmark hosts about 3 “virtual parties” daily. These parties are a gathering of buyers and sellers within a particular time. During the party, sellers can share items for sale as long as the item “fits” the party’s theme. For example, “Summerwear party” gathers all sellers with swim wear, summer clothing items, while “Best in Makeup” party invites both buyers and sellers interested in all things cosmetics.
  • Social Sharing (Posh Love, Meet the Posher, etc.) – The Poshmark app is filled with social media vibes. As a new seller, you can introduce yourself by creating a ‘Meet the Posher’ listing and share it all over the app. There’s also the Posh Love feature, where you share what you think looks cool (within your own listings or other sellers’ listing) to your followers.

How to Become a Posh Ambassador and Affiliate

Posh Ambassadors have access to VIP events, programs and newsletter.

They are recommended to new Poshers, which means their market is almost guaranteed.

However, it isn’t easy to become an ambassador.

You’d have to meet these criteria:

  • Listings Sold: At least 15 individual items sold
  • Available Listings: At least 50 available listings in your closet at any given time
  • Average Rating: With an average rating of at least 4.5 stars
  • Average Ship Time: With an average ship time of 3 days (or less)
  • Self-Shares: Record of sharing your own items at least 5,000 times to the community
  • Community Shares: Record of sharing items from other Poshers’ closets for at least 5,000 times

Another advantage of becoming a Posh ambassador is that you’re qualified to join the Posh Affiliate Program.

Meaning, you’ll be able to earn extra money by spreading Posh listings online and getting a commission with all the links that end up as a sale.

How to Start Selling on Poshmark

After signing up, you have a choice of creating a listing on the app, or via web.

If you prefer to list an item via the Poshmark app, here’s how to do it:

  1. Click on the Sell button in the app (It’s the camera icon!)
  2. Your camera will open, so take photos of the item you wish to sell. (You can also upload photos that are already stored on your device).
  3. Add up to 7 more photos for this listing.
  4. Fill in the description, price, size, and other details.

Can You Use Poshmark app for Business?

If you’ve ever faced a Powerseller on eBay or an successful Amazon seller, you know that the buy-and-sell market is alive and well.

Using the Poshmark app as a side gig can lead to a full-blown business if you know how to source products (eventually you’ll run out of things to sell from your closet). You should also be smart with picking luxury items (not all expensive, branded items are guaranteed to sell).

If you look around the community, you’ll see that sellers do make big bucks on the platform, but only a small percent.

It’s mostly due to the Posh Ambassador system that favors long-standing, loyal sellers who have an extensive history with Poshmark.

As a new seller trying our Poshmark, don’t expect to compete against the older Poshers – you’ll just get disappointed.

Instead, welcome the Poshmark app as a new platform to get rid of old stuff hassle-free and convert them into cash.