Side Hustles for Active Duty Military to Pass the Time and Earn Decent Extra Income

Are you active military personnel ready to take advantage of your free time and earn some extra money on the side? There might be limited opportunities available while on duty, but it does not mean you cannot find ways to maximize the hours available!

You do not have to be stuck in the barracks all day or unproductive between deployments or missions. With a bit of creativity and dedication, there are plenty of side hustles for active duty military that can not only bring practical growth opportunities but can also give you a decent sum of extra income.

From real estate to virtual tutoring, this post will provide excellent ideas for how you can make use of your downtime in order to generate funds to further support your financial needs.

Benefits of Having a Side Hustle While Still on Active Military Duty

Having a side hustle while on active military duty can be especially advantageous. Not only will it help you make better use of your free time, but it can also provide you with financial security and add extra value to your resume.

You can find ways to boost your income, whether that is by selling goods or providing services, while still being able to manage the demands of your military commitments. Plus, having side jobs for military members gives you something productive and meaningful to do. It provides an additional sense of purpose as you work towards building something for yourself outside the parameters of the Army or Navy. 

12 Excellent Side Hustles for Active Military Duty

Now that you know the benefits, let us jump right into some of the best side hustles for military personnel and see which one or two might work best for you.

1. Apartment Rentals

When people speak of making good money, one of the first things that would come to mind is real estate. This is because this investment vehicle is one of the most common and accessible forms of passive income. And, as active military personnel, renting out apartment units can be a great way to earn some extra bucks. All you need to do is invest in a property, furnish it if necessary, and then start listing it for potential tenants.

For starters, you can check out rental property investment tips and explore the different options you can pursue. There is a plethora of resources online that can help you understand the basics of renting out an apartment to generate income.

By owning these rentals, you will have your own side business that requires minimal effort from you.

2. Ride-Sharing

If you are someone who loves to be behind the wheel, then ride-sharing is definitely a side hustle you should consider. You will not only get to meet people from all walks of life but also explore different parts of your city or base town.

Ride-sharing services are available in most cities and can provide a steady stream of income, particularly on the weekends when people need transportation to get around. You can register for these services and, depending on your availability, offer rides to people who need them.

Being an active military member will not only prove to be beneficial in terms of the experience you can provide but also make it easier for you to find passengers. After all, they are more likely to trust someone with a legitimate job in the military rather than a random driver.

3. Short-Term Vacation Rentals

Like apartments, short-term vacation rentals are a great option for military real estate investing. This type of side hustle can be beneficial as it does not require much time or effort on your part.

You can buy a property with amenities that travelers look for in a popular destination and list it on Airbnb or Vrbo, then just wait for the bookings to come in. You can use the income earned from this side hustle to pay off your property loan and generate a steady income stream for yourself.

Here’s a quick guide to investing in these types of properties.

  • Research the local real estate market
  • Analyze rental trends and occupancy rates in the area
  • Crunch the numbers to make sure you’re making a sound investment decision
  • Calculate the cap rate
  • Find properties that travelers would typically need
  • Obtain necessary licenses
  • Set up the property for rental
  • Promote your property on vacation rental sites

Having a vacation rental not only allows you to enjoy the fact that you are helping travelers find comfortable accommodation when they need it, but you will also have a relaxing place to use for a break when the opportunity presents itself.

With this guide to real estate investment, you can start on the right foot towards being an owner of a vacation rental property!

4. Blogging and Podcasting

If you have a knack for writing, then why not make some extra money by doing it? Blogging is a great way to write about your experiences as an active military member and share useful insights on how you manage daily life in the Armed Forces. You can start out by creating a website where people can visit and follow your journey as you go through your military commitments.

To reach out to a wider audience in a more conversational way, you can also create a podcast. Here, you have the opportunity to talk about topics that are related to your life as active military personnel and provide helpful advice for those who listen. It is a great way to reach out to people in a more personal manner.

You can monetize your blog or podcast by adding ads, sponsorships, affiliate programs, and even product offerings that users may find interesting.

5. Real Estate Syndication

Real estate syndicates could be the ultimate strategy for passive real estate investing for military members. They are companies where multiple investors pool their money and resources together to purchase real estate assets together. This can be done through a limited liability company (LLC) or another legal entity, which allows everyone in the syndicate to share potential profits generated by the property.

Syndicated investments offer low risk with high returns, making them perfect for those who want to generate passive income without having to take on too much risk. As an active duty military member, you are ideally suited to build partnerships with other members in the industry, which could help expand your network and open up more opportunities for investments down the line.

6. Handyman Work

One of the most popular military side businesses is offering handyman work. This is a great option for those who have basic skills in carpentry, plumbing, and electrical jobs. With the rise of online services, like TaskRabbit, it has become easier for military personnel to find odd jobs that need to be done around the home or office. You can make use of your skills and take on small projects which you can then market to potential customers.

Being a handyman is a great way to make money when you are off-duty. All it takes is some basic knowledge and the right tools, and you can start earning money on the side while also gaining valuable experience at the same time.

7. Lawn Maintenance

If you have the right equipment, you can start a business mowing lawns and doing landscaping work as a side gig. All it takes is a few tools like a lawnmower, leaf blower, edger, and trimmer, and you could be the guy that your neighbors need for their lawn care requirements.

You can advertise your services online or put up flyers around your neighborhood to let potential customers know about your business. You will find that many people are willing to pay for professional lawn care services because it saves them time and effort.

With just a few hours of work each week, you could easily generate an additional income stream from this type of side hustle.

8. Real Estate Investment Trusts (REITs)

Like real estate syndication, REITs are also a great option for investing in real estate while serving in the military. REITs offer you the chance to purchase shares in a real estate company that then invests in one or more properties. This allows you to diversify your investments while still gaining exposure to the real estate industry and its potential returns.

REITs are also typically less risky than direct real estate investing because they tend to be managed by professionals who analyze potential investments and manage risks accordingly. Generally speaking, they pay out dividends on a regular basis, so you do not have to wait for the property to appreciate before you see a return on your investment.

9. Car Detailing

Do you enjoy cars? You can start a car detailing business with minimal equipment and no prior experience. All you need is a few basic tools, like vacuum cleaners and polishers, as well as cleaning products.

However, keep in mind that car detailing requires that you have interpersonal skills to be able to sell your services to potential customers. You will also need to invest in marketing efforts to get the word out about your business. With some patience, practice, and a bit of hard work, you could easily make this side hustle into a successful business that you will enjoy.

10. Commissary or Post-Exchange Work

As a member of the military force, you already have access to several commissary and post-exchange stores. Utilizing this benefit, you can start a business selling items from these stores. You could also offer services like repair or delivery of products.

By leveraging the resources available to military personnel, such as discounts and special offers, you can attract more customers and increase your revenue.

11. Food and Grocery Delivery

The COVID-19 pandemic has given us a glimpse of how lucrative food delivery can be. With the right setup and a reliable vehicle, this could be the best among the available side hustles for active duty military personnel. More and more people are living hectic lives, and you can make things more convenient for them by offering delivery services for items, such as groceries, food, and other essentials.

You can start by registering with a delivery service app, such as Uber Eats or GrubHub, or partnering up with local restaurants, grocery stores, and other businesses that offer delivery services. Then, you just need to promote your services and get the word out.

Once you have built up a customer base, you will have an additional stream of income that can help support your financial needs.

12. Virtual Tutoring

Last but definitely not least, you can use your military expertise and knowledge to start a virtual tutoring business. With the rise of online education platforms, more people are signing up for classes related to military topics, such as strategy, tactics, leadership, etc.

As an active duty military personnel, you have a unique opportunity to provide valuable insights and guidance on these topics. You can either create your own courses or offer tutoring services individually.

So, there you have it! When you consider these side hustles for active duty military, you will find that there are many opportunities available to make more money. From investing in real estate to delivering food and groceries, you can easily find a side gig that fits your skill set and financial needs.

Wrapping Up

By utilizing some available resources, there could be no limits to what you can achieve. The side hustles for active duty military listed above are excellent ways to make extra money while serving your country. So, do not miss out on these great opportunities, and start planning your side gigs today.

Good luck!


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