Top 10 Passive Income Ideas for Students

After getting admission to your dream college and beginning the academic program, you might think that some extra money in your pockets will help you enjoy your student life a little better. You might have seen students around you or in your class earning money working part-time. This might be due to delicate financial conditions at home or their endeavour to unburden their parents from the steep education fees.

Whatever the case may be, in this age of globalisation where digital tools are on the rise, there are several passive income ideas for students that can help them earn money through ways that do not require high-level expertise. The only investment you’d need is your time to learn a skill.

You should explore different passive income sources for students, irrespective of whether you are pursuing graduation or post-graduation or have just enrolled in a college. Here is a rundown of the top 10 student passive income ideas for you:

Best Passive Income Ideas for Students

Professional Gaming

If you love playing video games online, there’s good news for you. Online gaming nowadays can actually fetch you handsome money. You can become a professional gamer who earns money by playing video games. You can participate in gaming tournaments worldwide and make passive income from the prize money. You can even live-stream your gaming videos on various social platforms and build an online following for yourself.


You can start taking freelance projects if you have monetizable skills such as photography, writing, editing, designing, videography, etc. You can register on various freelancing portals to get clients. In addition, you can collaborate with people who are already working actively in these domains. For instance, you can join a team of photographers who cover wedding ceremonies on holidays when colleges are closed. Taking up freelance gigs is a great way to generate passive income for students.      

Home/Online Tuitions

If you are good at a subject and can find some time from your studies, you can teach your juniors or school students. You can either go to their homes or take online classes. The scope is not limited to studies, if you have earned a black belt in karate during your school days, you can still take offline or online classes to teach karate and self-defence to kids, or, if you are a good singer/dancer, you can also take singing/dance classes in your free time. Taking online classes for a large number of students will save time and offer you a steady source of passive income.

Build and Monetise Your Blog

Start your blog if you love writing and creating content about topics that interest you. It is easy to set up a blog online for free. Once you set it up, you can start posting content regularly. You can post about anything, from lifestyle, health, and fitness to travelling, self-help, and gadgets. Once you find what interests you the most, you can start sharing it with the world. It takes effort, patience, and quality content to build an audience. However, once you successfully build an audience, you can place ads, post affiliate links, and sell products through your blogs. As you explore passive income ideas for students, you’ll realise that blogging is one of the best ways to generate passive income.

Start a YouTube Channel on Life Tips

Just like setting up a blog, you can also start a YouTube channel easily. You can post videos about how to handle student life better while staying away from home, your recent trips, introduce new gadgets helpful for students or compare gadgets from various brands, stream your video game live, post funny videos, post creative but healthy recipes students can cook easily, and even create educational videos. There are no restrictions on what you can post on your YouTube channel. You can earn through ads, sell merchandise related to the theme of your channel, market different products from various brands, and post affiliate links. Moreover, you will get a public identity, which can potentially create more revenue streams than the channel itself.

Sell Stock Photos

If you have excellent photography skills, you can sell your photos on various stock photography platforms. From landscape to animal photos, these platforms enable you to create profiles, upload photos, and sell your photographs. Several online platforms such as Fiver, Upwork, elance, etc. offer commissions on each photograph sold. So, you can upload your photographs to these stock photography sites and earn passive income as a student.

Find a Flexible Data Entry Job

This is one of the easiest passive income ideas students can consider. Data entry jobs do not require a specific skill. You only need a laptop or a personal computer, basic Word and Excel skills, and some spare time. You need to register yourself on trusted websites that provide data-entry work and begin accepting new assignments. A word of caution here though, these days many fake data entry jobs are being pitched to Indian students. To avoid getting trapped in any such scam, one thing that you must always bear in mind is that a genuine employer will never ask you to pay them anything.

Rent Out Old Books to Juniors

Though this may not be a source that generates the best passive income for students, it is certainly one of the easiest ways to get some pocket money. If you purchase new books for your ongoing course, instead of selling them to a scrap collector; you can rent them to your juniors. They might not want to invest a huge amount in buying new books that would eventually become irrelevant after the end of the semester. This way, you can earn passive income, while at the same time helping juniors save money.

Also Read: List of Best Places to Live after Retirement in India

Investment-based Passive Income Ideas for Students

Among several passive income ideas for students that involve skills, efforts, and time to earn money, some ideas involve making money through money. These ideas are investment-based. Of course, you need knowledge, time, and effort, too, but the major component is money. Let us take a look at two such ideas.

Start a Mutual Fund SIP

If you have earned some money through various sources of passive income for students like those mentioned above, you can use that money to make more money. You can invest the money further into various market-linked schemes through mutual funds.

Mutual funds have fund managers and market experts that invest your money in various stocks and/or debt funds on your behalf. For their expertise and management of your funds, they take a nominal cut on the returns. Various mutual fund schemes have different levels of risks associated with the investment. You can invest either a lump-sum amount or opt for a Systematic Investment Plan (SIP).

SIPs work best for students because you can start investing with amounts as low as Rs. 500 in various schemes. Please study the terms and conditions of every scheme you want to invest in carefully before putting in your money.    

Invest in Stocks

If you already have some money and have learned a lot about the stock market, you can start investing in stocks. Various platforms are emerging with the rise of the Fintech industry, enabling you to invest in stocks easily. By employing your knowledge about investments in stocks, you can generate passive income streams. However, earning passive income for students through this method involves risks. You must invest cautiously only after evaluating the fundamentals of the company you are planning to invest in.

Also Read: Passive Income: What It Is and How to Make It

Closing Thoughts

You can utilise any of the passive income ideas for students mentioned above and begin earning. You need not be an expert in the field to earn. All you need is a will to explore and learn. These ideas will help you explore your strengths and capitalise on them to earn passive income. The best aspect of earning passive income as a student is you get exposure to the real world before everyone else and need not depend on your parents to pay your college fees or earn pocket money.  


How do part-time jobs help students?

Part-time jobs help students to pay their college fees and cover small expenses such as travelling, attending parties, giving treats on birthdays and paying for extra books, journals, and other study materials required during the course. Also, since you start earning early, you can also start investing at an early age which can go a long way in helping you build a significant corpus in the long run.

Can part-time jobs affect the studies of a student?

Part-time jobs do not affect a student’s studies if they manage their time properly. The key is to strike a balance between studies and the job. A better idea is to make a realistic timetable and stick to it.

Where to look for online jobs for students?

You can look for online jobs on freelance platforms available online. You must ensure that the platforms you opt for are trusted and legitimate. You must also check their payment policies.

What are the most popular passive income ideas for students?

Some of the popular passive income ideas for students include completing freelance gigs, doing data-entry jobs, taking tuition or online classes, blogging, starting a YouTube channel and many more.

How to charge for home tuition or online classes?

Generally, home tuition and online classes are charged on an hourly basis. You can either charge based on the number of hours or the number of classes taken.

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Disclaimer: This article has been prepared on the basis of internal data, publicly available information and other sources believed to be reliable. The article may also contain information which are the personal views/opinions of the authors. The information contained in this article is for general, educational and awareness purposes only and is not a complete disclosure of every material fact. It should not be construed as investment advice to any party. The article does not warrant the completeness or accuracy of the information and disclaims all liabilities, losses and damages arising out of the use of this information. Readers shall be fully liable/responsible for any decision, whether related to investment or otherwise, taken on the basis of this article.

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