How to plan for a debt-free holiday season with flexible work
A little cushion can go a long way to cover extra holiday expenses
People feel holiday stress for many reasons. One major stressor is the need for more income to cover extra holiday expenses. Experts recommend that you take a reasonable approach to spending for gifts so you don’t find yourself in the red—and feeling blue. However, there may be a few holiday gifts and indulgences that are important to you, and you can have them without financial stress.
Flexible workers can make it a point to be in the black because extra work is typically available over the holidays. In fact, since many people take time off to go on vacations or spend quality time with family, you may have your selection of extra gigs to pick up. With careful planning, you can also enjoy your holiday time AND earn extra money to pay for fun plans and gifts.
How to use flexible work to come out of the holidays debt-free
1. Set a debt-free budget.
Good budgeting captures a full picture of your planned income and expenses. The exercise of budgeting allows you to make sure your income covers your expenses. By designing a budget that accounts for your desired purchases, you can develop your plan to include those costs and know how much extra income you’ll need. This way, you can enjoy your holiday without fretting about next month’s credit card bills or dipping too deep in your savings.
2. Add extra gigs to your existing schedule.
Select additional work that will net enough to fully or partially pay for your extra spending. You may want to look at different gig sites than those you normally use.
3. Select short-term work.
Look for work platforms that specialize in hourly work like Fiverr, Wonolo, Craigslist or Gigmasters. That way, you can continue your holiday festivities knowing that you have a workable plan to balance work and fun.
4. Work during off hours.
Maybe you can get up a little earlier or go to bed a little later. You may find that consistently working a few extra hours over two, four or six weeks is all you need to meet your income goal.
5. Consider weekend gigs.
During this season, there are plenty of opportunities for bartending, event support, catering and babysitting. Companies have events and rush projects to complete by the end of the year. Again, you may find through budgeting that you only need to work a couple weekend jobs to cover your purchases.
6. Pick up a small gift for yourself.
You deserve to get something special for the extra work. Especially if that gift will bring an additional level of enjoyment to your seasonal gigs, like a gift card to your favorite coffee spot or a holiday CD to listen to on your commute. Just make sure to work the gift you select into your budget.
Working from home this holiday season? Here are a few great gift ideas for your home office.
With a little extra work, you can purchase the items that are important to you and end your year without any additional debt.
You can learn more about working in the gig economy at the Gig Workers Summit, January 24-26. More than 20 leading experts will teach online participants how to earn more income and build a thriving business. Register online, or call (800)717-8280 for further information.
Until then, Happy Hustle!