We’ve all heard about the rise of the side hustle. For those in full-time employment, a side hustle presents an opportunity to increase your income while exploring new passions. But what about students who are preparing to enter this rapidly changing workspace?

If students run a side hustle during their studies, it can be an amazing opportunity to test the freelancing waters, make a few mistakes without too many consequences, help feel more confident after graduating and potentially earning a lot more than working hundreds of hours in a local coffee shop.

Here are some of the most profitable industries to freelance in while still meeting those dooming deadlines on time.

Freelance Writing

Freelance writing.

You might think you have enough writing on your hands while studying for a degree, but if you have a knack for it, it could be the perfect side hustle. The average writer earns £10,500 a year, which isn’t a lot for full-time writers, but might be a great source of extra cash while studying.

Students with a penchant for penmanship can try their hand at freelance copywriting. Startups and product-focused businesses regularly require writers to create marketing content. Editorial writing is oft sought after for online and print magazines too.

Freelance Translation

World globe.

Turn your bi-lingual skills into cold hard cash. If you’re well versed in more than one language, getting into translation is one of the most obvious ways that you can make some extra money on the side.  For a freelance translator, the average salary is £10.65 per hour. Language skills are important in all industries, especially in the creative sector, so having a few years of translation under your belt will be a major plus. It also looks great on your CV should you need to write one of those in the future!

Freelance Styling

Fashion styling.

Students interested in fashion styling can easily get started by being an assistant for an existing stylist or by offering personal styling services. Freelance styling typically consists of helping to create moodboards and research brands, pick up and return clothes and help out on shoot days. Job postings can be found online on sites like Fashion Workie or via social media. The usual salary for an assistant stylist is £50 to £150 per day.

For those with fashion designing skills, there’s money to be made by making clothes to order or providing a tailoring service on the side.

Freelance Designer

Graphic design on desktop.

Are you studying Graphic Design, UX/UI, Motion Graphics? If so, your skills are in high demand. Freelancing in design is a fantastic way to learn about the industry whilst earning extra cash. Students can find freelance opportunities at small design companies or startups that’ll be happy to provide work while the student also works on their degree. Those starting out can earn £10 – £35 an hour, while those with more experience behind them can expect £35 – £70 an hour.

Freelance Photographer


Freelance photography can be a very rewarding side hustle for budding photographers and creatives. Students can look into taking photographs for the university blog, personal projects or course work to build up a portfolio. Once that’s in the bag and you’ve got a sense of your style, you’re ready to start applying for jobs. The average photographer rate is £34.66 per hour in the UK.

Check our Freelancer Club jobs board for a full list of freelance jobs to get your side hustle off the ground.