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Finding a passive income source can be so difficult for a college student because of the conflict between work and academic pursuit. Because of this, many students are now coming up with inventive ways to get passive money that don’t require a large time investment. If you are a college student looking to find ways to make passive income, this article could be the best place to start.

For a university student getting a passive income can be a big breakthrough in their academics and it can also help in shaping their future careers. It is also important to note that passive income can be at the detriment of academic prowess and to succeed in both, it is a must that students learn to balance.

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Hot Passive Income Ideas for University Students in 2024

Passive Income for Students
Passive Income for Students: Freepik

Setting up a Channel on YouTube

As a college student, one of the best ways to make money is to stream videos on YouTube. It takes little time to gain a sizable following and achieve notoriety on YouTube. All that’s required is the creation of a YouTube account and the posting of excellent material.

For every 1,000 ad views, a student’s YouTube account might earn them $18. For every 1000 video views, this comes out to $3–5. 

Related: Top 12 Video Editors For Starting a YouTube Channel.

Investments in Cryptocurrencies

University students can invest in cryptocurrencies and potentially make passive money. Although these investments carry a high degree of risk, they can be quite profitable.

Registering for a free Coinbase account is the first step. You can then buy your preferred cryptocurrencies, including worldcoin, Ethereum, Bitcoin Cash, and others.

The average price of bitcoin is speculated to be $569,996.95 in 2030.

ICYM: The Beginner’s Guide to Forex Trading in Kenya

Create an Online Course

On websites like Skillshare or Udemy, creating an online course is simple. You merely need to establish a course and leave it there; there won’t be any upfront charges. It’s a fantastic passive income source as a result. However, the course must be excellent.

If you believe you have nothing to teach, think again. You may teach anything from writing rap songs to applying makeup to taking amazing phone photography in online classes. Online courses can yield an annual income ranging from $1000 to $100,000. The quantity of visitors you can generate, your conversion rate, and the cost of your courses will all majorly impact your income. 

Become an Instructor

Online tutoring is another option for pupils. This is a fantastic method for students who are proficient in certain topics to earn some extra cash. You can list your tutoring services on Craigslist and other such websites, such as Tutor.com if you are a tutor.

Take up teaching now to see how much money you can earn passively! There is something for everyone among the many subjects you can tutor students in.

For fundamental topics, most online tutors get paid between $30 and $60 per hour; however, for difficult subjects like calculus or SAT prep, their pay might go up to $50 or $60 per hour.

ICYM: 10 Profitable Business Ideas in Kenya with Zero Capital

Editing videos

Editing images and videos is a way to supplement your income. People who can edit content in their spare time are in high demand among individuals and production companies.

Video editors who work for themselves can provide editing services from the convenience of their homes. One technique to make the work more passive is to get clients and outsource the work. Video editors can make a substantial income, particularly when producing lengthy and excellent content.

The average pay for freelance video editors in the United States is $20 per hour, depending on expertise and responsibilities.

Earn Money by Finishing Simple Tasks

Sign up for freelancing websites such as Upwork and Freelancer and take up some small tasks.

Some payable activities include graphic design, content writing, video transcription, and language translation. This will bring in money for you.

Also Read  How to Start a Profitable Tech Business in Kenya

Be a Vblogger

Vblogging is a great way for students to earn money passively. All it takes to begin a vlog is to switch on your camera (or use your phone!) and record your daily activities. 

On YouTube, vlogs are extremely popular. You begin to make money after you attain a particular audience and viewership level.

Advertising, affiliate marketing, and brand sponsorships are all ways to make money. While growing your following will require time and work, it will become simpler to turn a profit if you reach a certain size.

Between $10,000 and $20,000 can be made per month by a vlogger with a sizable fan base through sponsorships, advertising, and product sales. 

A Handbook for Project Management

As a student, you can mentor other students and exchange ideas regarding the project tasks. Science projects demand a great deal of imagination and ingenuity.

Assist students and impart fresh concepts. Many pupils will be more creative and score higher as a result of this.

Turn Into an Influencer on Social Media

Social media is a great way to make some money these days because it is so widely used. Without having to put in a lot of effort, would not it be wonderful to make money?

Selecting a niche, selecting a platform for content sharing, and then creating content are the first steps. 

It is required to labor for passive income via social media marketing.  You can start earning money through affiliate marketing, advertising, and other means once you have gained a lot of traction.

Virtual Assistant

Another viable option for earning income is by working as a virtual assistant. This role allows you to work from the comfort of your home and doesn’t necessarily require extensive experience or specialized training.

Platforms like UpWork and Freelancer offer numerous opportunities for virtual assistant jobs.

On average, virtual assistants earn around $36,272 per year, with salaries ranging from $21,000 to $56,000 annually. Hourly rates for virtual assistants vary, with a median of approximately $16 per hour and a range spanning from $10.16 to $29.49.

Creating a Digital Product

For students looking for a low-effort passive income option, producing digital goods like e-books, video courses, or courses on subjects they are passionate about is a great idea.

These goods can be sold on e-commerce platforms like Udemy, where customers pay a nominal fee for each item they buy.

Online Selling of Handmade Items

Online sales of handmade goods are another way to generate passive income.

There are numerous platforms, like Shopify and Etsy, where you can sell the things you have made.

Online Video Game Streaming

Across the globe, a lot of people take pleasure in watching their favorite gamers. You can earn money playing video games if you are an avid player.

Making the video, uploading it to a website like Twitch or YouTube, gaining followers on Grin.co, and waiting to see the money come in passively are the only requirements. A gaming influencer network such as Grin.co can also be of assistance to you.

Some people can make a sizable income from online gaming, depending on how many followers they have. However, this could eventually be very beneficial to you.

Bond Investments

There are two primary avenues through which you can generate passive income from bond investments. The initial approach involves holding onto the bonds until they reach maturity and start generating returns. Typically, bonds yield interest biannually.

Alternatively, you can also profit from bonds by selling them for a price higher than your initial purchase. If you’re new to bond investments and have questions about how they work, don’t hesitate to seek assistance.

Niche Membership Sites

Creating a membership website presents a compelling opportunity for individuals who enjoy crafting content and possess valuable knowledge and skills to share. Focusing on this specialized niche can serve as an effective avenue for generating passive income.

By offering exclusive access to members for a membership fee, you can monetize your blog effectively. This model ensures a consistent revenue stream as long as subscribers maintain their memberships.

Membership sites have the potential to generate significant monthly earnings, typically ranging from $25,000 to $50,000, even after factoring in affiliate payouts. Moreover, should you decide to sell the site in the future, it could potentially fetch up to a million dollars, representing a substantial income source.

Renting Your Storage Space

Renting out underutilized spaces like your garage, attic, basement, closet, guest room, or RV pad can provide an excellent opportunity to generate passive income. Leveraging extra space can prove lucrative without requiring active involvement.

Companies or individuals seeking storage solutions often rent out such spaces, offering a passive income stream, especially if these areas have been unused for some time.

The rental rates for storage spaces vary based on factors such as demand and location, allowing you to determine competitive pricing for your available space.

Participate In Paid Focus Groups

Participating in compensated focus groups offers an opportunity to earn additional income. These groups comprise individuals who gather to provide feedback on various concepts, products, or services.

Also Read  10 Profitable Business Ideas in Kenya with Zero Capital

You can find such groups online or reach out to local market research companies to inquire about available opportunities.

Graphic Design

If you have a knack for design programs like Photoshop, GIMP, or similar tools, you can create graphics for sale to companies or individuals for use on their websites, marketing collateral, or promotional materials.

The beauty of this opportunity lies in the ability to sell your graphics repeatedly, making it an excellent avenue for generating passive income.

According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, graphic designers earned a median pay of $53,380 in 2020. The top twenty-five percent earned $71,310, while the bottom twenty-five percent earned $40,160.

Peer-to-Peer Lending

Engaging in the peer-to-peer lending market presents an opportunity for generating passive income if you have surplus cash. Similar to banks, you can charge interest on loans provided to individuals over the internet by creating an account on P2P lending platforms.

Despite the inherent risk of bad debt, this investment avenue offers the potential to earn hundreds of dollars per month in interest. Moreover, it provides a relatively high return on investment while offering flexibility to the lender.


Chatbots, despite being relatively new, are rapidly gaining popularity, making them a valuable source of passive income. Monetizing your chatbot is essential to generating revenue from its services.

One approach to monetization is offering chatbot services to clients or businesses. Additionally, there are several other methods to monetize your chatbot, including lead generation, eCommerce integration, affiliate marketing, and advertising.

The key is to find a niche product or service and promote it effectively through your chatbot. With a well-designed and managed bot that attracts a substantial following or leads, you can potentially earn hundreds of dollars per month.

The cost of developing a chatbot can vary depending on whether you choose to build it in-house or through an agency, typically ranging from $500 to $2,500.

Sell Stock Photos

Monetizing your photography skills by selling images online through stock photo websites can be a lucrative income stream. Platforms like Shutterstock.com and iStockphoto.com allow you to upload and sell your photos to a wide audience.

By leveraging your expertise as a skilled photographer, you can potentially earn a substantial income through the sale of your images on these platforms.

Display Advertising

Displaying adverts on your blog, private channels, app, and website is the best way to generate additional revenue.

E-Commerce Website

Creating an eCommerce website and selling goods and services online can yield a significant income stream. With proper management, your website can operate actively without constant oversight, enabling you to earn passive income.

Utilizing suitable platforms, such as drop shipping, affiliate marketing, print-on-demand, and display ads, among others, allows you to profit from eCommerce without the need for extensive programming knowledge.


Embarking on a podcast project with friends can be both enjoyable and rewarding, especially considering the surge in popularity podcasts have experienced in recent years. Collaborating with co-hosts or inviting guest speakers can significantly enhance the podcast’s appeal and reach.

Implementing an affiliate marketing campaign is straightforward, involving the placement of advertisements between episodes. Investing in a high-quality microphone and selecting a niche topic that resonates with listeners are prudent decisions to ensure the podcast’s success.

Podcasters who consistently achieve 10,000 downloads or more per episode can typically expect to earn between $500 and $900 per episode, making podcasting a potentially lucrative venture.

Writing a blog

If you have a passion for writing essays and expressing your thoughts, launching a blog could be a fantastic idea. Blogging allows you to create diverse content, including reviews, articles, and videos, catering to various interests.

Monetizing your blog through methods like print-on-demand, eCommerce, display advertising, and affiliate marketing can generate income from your content.

To grow your audience and maximize earnings, it’s crucial to establish a well-trafficked and profitable website with consistent, high-quality content. With a substantial following, typically around 30K+ monthly views, the average blogger can potentially earn over $1,000 per month from various blog activities.

ICYM: How to blog in 2024 without any Programming skills

Design an App

Before diving into app development, it’s essential to grasp the fundamentals of app design. If you lack experience in this area, consider seeking assistance from a friend who has expertise in app development.

Once you’re ready, take proactive steps to transform your creative idea into a tangible product. Whether it’s crafting the next innovative habit tracker or developing an app to streamline homework management, ensure your concept aligns with user needs and market demand.

To enhance revenue potential, consider integrating in-app purchases, and offering additional features or premium content to users for a fee. This strategy can effectively monetize your app and boost overall earning

Also Read  How to Use Customer Reviews to Build Your Brand in 2024

Data Entry

For individuals proficient in handling data and information, venturing into a data entry role can be a lucrative way to earn supplementary income.

As a freelance data entry clerk, you’ll collaborate with businesses to manage extensive datasets using computer systems. All that’s required to kickstart this endeavor is basic software knowledge and access to a reliable laptop.

To optimize efficiency, consider employing scripts, macros, or outsourcing tasks to automate workflows. With compensation rates reaching up to $20 per hour for skilled data entry clerks, this opportunity promises a rewarding path to passive income.

Develop WordPress plugins

For individuals proficient in handling data and information, venturing into a data entry role can be a lucrative way to earn supplementary income.

Have you ever discovered a WordPress plugin that significantly enhanced your website’s functionality? If so, consider the possibility of creating your plugin to share with others.

Monetizing your plugin can be achieved through various methods such as selling it directly to users or incorporating advertisements within the plugin interface. These strategies offer opportunities to generate income while providing valuable solutions to other WordPress users.

Sell Digital Downloads

Indeed, the appeal of digital products over physical ones is undeniable. With online transactions, the hassles associated with shipping, product returns, and storage are eliminated, streamlining the entire process.

Identifying the right niche is key to successfully selling digital products. Whether it’s ebooks, art, music, online courses, tools, themes, or templates, there’s a wide array of digital offerings to explore. Selecting the ideal fit for your skills and interests enables you to capitalize on the growing market for digital goods.


For those skilled in data entry, graphic design, transcription, copywriting, video editing, or related fields, platforms like Fiverr or Upwork offer a gateway to freelancing success.

These marketplaces connect talented individuals with clients seeking their specific services. By registering on these platforms, freelancers can showcase their expertise, build a professional profile, and secure projects from a diverse range of clients.

With a strong portfolio and a proactive approach to networking, freelancers can establish themselves as reputable professionals in their chosen fields, opening up opportunities for ongoing work and career growth.


Engaging in dropshipping involves selling products on your website without the need to maintain inventory. Instead, you establish partnerships with merchants or wholesalers and forward customer orders directly to them for fulfillment.

This business model eliminates the need for storing, managing, and shipping products, making it a popular choice for online retailers seeking a low-risk and scalable approach to e-commerce.

By focusing on marketing, customer service, and building strong supplier relationships, dropshipping entrepreneurs can create successful online businesses with minimal upfront investment.

Read this if you want to venture into Dropshipping: How to Start Drop Shipping Business in Kenya for Free

Establishing your brand

Active participation in e-commerce events is essential for establishing and expanding your presence in the industry. These events provide valuable networking opportunities, allowing you to connect with potential customers, partners, and industry experts. By showcasing your products or services and engaging with attendees, you can raise awareness about your brand and attract new customers.

Exceptional customer service is paramount for generating positive word-of-mouth publicity and fostering customer loyalty. By prioritizing customer satisfaction and addressing their needs promptly and effectively, you can create memorable experiences that encourage customers to recommend your business to others.

Investing in superior customer service not only enhances your reputation but also contributes to long-term success and growth in the competitive e-commerce landscape.

Affiliate Marketing

Affiliate marketing presents a lucrative opportunity to generate income by promoting products or services through your website or blog. Registering with established affiliate networks like Commission Junction or Amazon Associates enables you to access a wide range of products to promote and earn commissions on sales generated through your affiliate Students can leverage affiliate marketing by creating a blog where they recommend products or services they use and endorse.

By sharing genuine recommendations and experiences, students can establish credibility with their audience and earn passive income through affiliate commissions. This approach allows students to monetize their interests and hobbies while gaining valuable marketing skills and experience.

Gaming Apps that Pay

By embracing this concept, you can turn your passion for playing mobile games into a source of passive income. This opportunity is ideal for avid gamers who wish to be rewarded for their time and skills.

Through various apps, you can earn money by engaging with the platform, playing games, and participating in surveys. All you need to begin earning extra income is a reliable smartphone. Depending on the app and the points you accumulate, you can receive compensation ranging from $5 to $25 in cash or gift cards. This innovative approach allows you to monetize your gaming hobby while enjoying your favorite pastime.


Passive income during college can be incredibly beneficial. Not only does it offer practical industry experience, but it also teaches valuable financial management skills and allows you to build a financial cushion for the future.

While the array of passive income opportunities may seem overwhelming, it’s essential to recognize that initial groundwork is necessary before reaping the rewards. Now is an opportune moment to explore and experiment with one of these passive income options, leveraging your time and resources to lay the foundation for future financial stability and success. Whether it’s investing in stocks, starting a side hustle, or exploring other passive income streams, taking proactive steps now can set you on the path toward financial freedom.

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