Surprisingly, income level doesn't determine who has a side gig

3 minute read strives to provide our users with helpful information while remaining unbiased and truthful. We hold our sponsors and partners to the highest industry standards. Once vetted, those sponsors may compensate us for clicks and transactions that occur from a link within this page.

The internet is littered with advice on how to get your side hustle on — side hustles for single moms, side hustles for college students, side hustles for retirees — heck, someone’s found 11 side hustles for people who hate people.

Now research from CareerBuilder is backing up what a simple Google search suggests: Having a job in addition to your job is becoming the new norm. In fact, based on its online poll of more than 3,600 full-time workers, nearly a third of the nation’s employed have another gig in their spare time. To be precise, 32 percent of them do — that’s up from 29 percent the year before.

When income doesn’t matter

The research paints a more detailed picture than any screenshot can about who takes on a those in-addition-to jobs from Uber driver to Etsy arts crafter.

Rich or poor? No income level precludes the desire to work a second gig. But not surprisingly, those who make less money are doing it more than those who make more.

About one in three people making under $50,000 a year take on a side hustle. Compare that to one in four people who already make more than $75,000.

Still, even high-end earners weren’t always satisfied with one job — nearly one in five people making more than $100,000 had an additional gig, the poll revealed.

And women are doing it at higher rates than men — 35 percent of females had a side hustle, whereas 28 percent of males did.

Maybe those women are aiming to bridge the gender wage gap, you know the one that has the typical woman earning 79 cents for every dollar a man earns, and taking home a median annual income that’s $10,800 less than a man’s, says a report released by the Senate Joint Economic Committee Democratic Staff in April.

An emerging economy

The side gig economy that is engaging an average of 32 percent of the country’s workers is pretty evenly distributed from the east to the west, north to south.

But there were some hotspots. Tops among them: Dallas, with 40 percent of its workers having a second income source. Boston, Houston, New York, Philadelphia, and Miami all clocked in with rates at 36 percent or higher.

“While we continue to be at what is considered full employment, the quality and pay of jobs isn’t always what workers want, causing them to seek out new ways to supplement their full-time income,” said Rosemary Haefner, CareerBuilder’s chief human resources officer. “We’re no longer in a world where there’s just one employee-employer relationship. It’s easier than ever to download an app that allows you to drive around passengers, pick up babysitting gigs or sell your unwanted furniture, and employees are willing to take on these extra responsibilities for the extra cash.”

Indeed, reported this year that in the past 20 years, the gig economy has increased 27 percent more than traditional jobs.

CareerBuilder’s poll came up with a list of common side gigs including babysitter, baker, dog walker, blogger, DJ, and bartender. Among the stuff you may not have considered, but someone else has: barrel racer, soap maker, gourd artist, and marketing research.

A little extra cash is good, but if you’re seeking to pay off a big debt, not all hustles are created equal.

The Washington Post reports that 85 percent of gig workers make less than $500 a month on average through those services. The biggest payoff came from home sharing through Airbnb, which averaged $440 a month. A Lyft driver pocketed close to $210 a month. Those Etsy craft sellers can barely cover dinner for four at Chipotle at a monthly median of $40.

So are side hustles worth it? has this inside look at the truth about side gigs.

Did we provide the information you needed? If not let us know and we’ll improve this page.
Let us know if you liked the post. That’s the only way we can improve.

About the Author

Michelle Bryan

Michelle Bryan

Before Michelle began writing about how to save money, she made money as a successful real estate investor and also worked as an Organic Foods reporter and opinion columnist. She is an expert in corporate brand management, so she understands how advertisers try to separate you from your money. Her work has appeared on sites as diverse as Forbes, NBC News, Huffington Post, Yahoo, GoBankingRates, U.S. News and World Report, City Pulse, Newsday, On Call and more… When she isn’t trying to get people out of debt, she’s trying to get them to travel frugal and eat organic and cheap – the Arizona State University journalism major writes passionately on the topic. She attended the prestigious Walter Cronkite School of Communication and Journalism with a major in Mass Communication and Media.

Published by, LLC