Extra Cash: Side Hustle Ideas In South Africa

One of the biggest risks is having a single source of income. And having a side hustle is a way to mitigate this risk. The South African economic climate and unique cultural (and racial) background make South Africa the ideal place to start a hustle – and if you please, scale it into a full-blown business.

if you’re looking for online, tech and online skill-related side hustles, you can check out this article here. For this article, we will explore interesting side hustles – and a few normal ones in between.

Are you interested in how to start an online business in blogging, influencer marketing, graphic design, crypto, copywriting or photography? Then maybe you need this article instead!

The Best Side Hustles (Services)

Rent Out a Room on Airbnb

Renting out a room on Airbnb isn’t only about earning an extra income, but also allows you to meet and network with people worldwide. You’ll be surprised by how many people want to stay in remote places, cities, and close to facilities/amenities such as hospitals and conference venues.

Hustle with Personal Training

Personal trainers help clients achieve their fitness goals through customized workout plans and nutritional advice. I had a fitness fanatic friend, who assisted me with personal training sessions at our local gym. It was an amazing experience, because not only did he earn money, but he did what he loved. If this is your thing, you can do this at your/the client’s home or the gym – or even online if you’re able to deliver results!

Side Hustle Ideas for Pet Lovers

There is a huge market in South Africa for pets. It is estimated to reach R 8.5 Billion in 2025. Here are some interesting, fun, boring and unexplored pet hustles that you can explore:

  • Dog walking – Every morning when I drive through Waterkloof in Pretoria, I see normal people walking with these pedigree dogs that look like something from an international dog show.
  • Grooming and mobile pet services – people will pay top money for making their pets look amazing.
  • Pet hotels and pet sitting can be lucrative if you have economies of scale – multiple pet owners in the same area that need help around the same time. I don’t recommend calling it the pussy hotel though.
  • Pet accessories are HUGE in SA – consider reselling or importing luxury accessories as cat chokes to old cat ladies that live alone

Some great examples of these are PetSitters Cape Town and AtFrits Pet Hotel

House Sitting and Babysitting hustles

I did a lot of housesitting as a teenager and student. It was extremely lucrative, especially during December. I would use the money for my holiday in early January and/or for the things I needed for my course. Success in this field often comes from reliability, trustworthiness, and positive referrals. Learn more from trustedhousesitters and see successful babysitting services like Sitters4U.

Personal Development Hustle

Coaching and personal development Hustles

People need help. Seriously, they do. And coaching and personal development can help people to get out of the rut. These are excellent opportunities for those who like to help people. One of my friends runs Rescript Coaching, a very successful business that he built up from scratch!

  • Life coaches help clients achieve personal and professional goals through guidance and support.
  • Relationship coaches can help couples to open up communication and build intimacy.
  • Career coaches assist aspiring (and existing) employees and apprentices in reaching their career goals, discovering their ideal job and making good decisions
  • Corporate coaches on the other hand work with individuals and groups to understand the complex dynamics of corporate culture, office politics and reaching your goals and KPIs set. Executive coaches work with leaders and teams to help them develop leadership skills and overcome obstacles to success.
  • Money coaches assist normal people in their everyday life with budgeting, and their money paradigm and challenge their spending habits and the psychology behind their spending habits. Note they do not give financial advice or tell you what to invest in!

I see a coach often to open my mind to new business opportunities and reframing my thoughts.

Although coaching isn’t regulated like psychologists and psychiatrists, there are coaching bodies that can offer some level of credibility. Learn more from Comensa

Property Side Hustles

If making money through accounting, managing, selling or buying property (or an HOA/Sectional title scheme) in South Africa, you need to be registered with the Property Practitioners Regulatory Authority (PPRA). For example, if you’re managing the finances of a sectional title scheme or selling a property (agent), then you need to be registered. Still, you can legally hustle with real estate. Some of my favourite property hustles include home staging, linking a buyer and seller through an estate agent (and collecting commission), doing maintenance and property coaching/consulting.

Home staging hustle

Home staging involves preparing a property for sale by arranging furniture and decor to make it more appealing to potential buyers. Successful home stagers often have a keen eye for design and understand market trends. They use drone photography, props and add stylish decor to make the home attractive. Check out Cape Home Staging for more details.

Investment Property coaching

Buying property is complicated. A property coach can assist you in the buying process as a neutral party by coaching you, challenging your property assumptions (wants and needs) and do quick calculations on affordability and profitability. I have coached quite a few people, and saved them hundreds of thousands of rands in negotiating a better deal.

Property cleaning services

One of my tenants moved out the other day, and I had to pick up the toilet seat in the main bedroom. The kitchen looked like someone vomited all over a month-old placenta. I needed property cleaning services to clean the place up and make it look presentable. This side hustle can easily target homeowners who do not want a permanent domestic worker or someone looking to clean a crime scene (excellent training).

Handyman Services: Home Repairs and Maintenance

Handymen provide various repair and maintenance services for homes and businesses. This can include plumbing, electrical work, painting, and general repairs. Success in this field requires a wide range of skills and a reputation for reliability. and see successful services like oldschoolhandyman.

Yard Work or Landscaping: Offer Gardening and Landscaping Services

Landscapers and gardeners provide yard maintenance, garden design, and landscaping services. If you have an interest in the knowledge of plants and landscaping techniques, then this one might be for you. Successful businesses often offer personalized service and creative design solutions. It might be good to start with your garden!

As a side note – have you thought of doing a vegetable garden?

Food and Beverage Side Businesses

Depending on the municipality, you might find hustling with food easy or challenging. For example, if you want to sell food at a local market in Pretoria, you need to have attended a one-day course in food management.

Hustling with Food Stalls at your local market

Take your speciality – that which you love cooking – and sell it at your local market. My Taiwanese friend runs a stall at the local farmer’s market. He sells spring rolls, Taiwanese street food and rice noodles early on a Saturday morning. You can sell frozen food, traditional snacks like magwinya (sold at x 3 premium) or even fresh produce that you bought from a wholesaler.

It’s worth mentioning the booming food truck business – however, it takes a lot of capital to start the business.

The Neighbourgoods Market in Johannesburg, The Farmer’s Market in Pretoria and Bloemfontein are just a few markets to consider. You could expand your side hustle to functions, expos and other places.

Side hustle and baking

Bakers can turn their passion into profit by selling homemade treats such as cakes, cookies, and pastries. These products can be sold online, at markets, or at local cafes. Successful bakers often have a strong online presence and offer customized options. Learn more from  Sweet LionHeart and see successful bakers like The Velvet Cake Co.

Become a Personal Chef

Personal chefs prepare meals for clients in their homes, tailoring menus to specific tastes and dietary requirements. This service is popular among busy professionals and health-conscious individuals. Successful personal chefs often build a loyal client base through word-of-mouth and personalized service. Learn more from [The Private Chef](https://theprivatechef.co.za/) and see successful chefs like Chef Louisa Motshane

Creative and Skilled Side Businesses

Sadly, most people create a lot of products, without having a target audience or client base. Many of the creative and skilled side hustles require significant investment in business development, sales and marketing (BDSM). I suggest creating books such as the Lean Startup and books on finding a product market fit, before spending thousands on something that could never sell.

On the other hand, some hustles are easy and require little effort – such as street performances.

Street Performance: Entertain and Captivate Audiences

Street performers entertain the public through acts like music, dance, magic, and more. Performing in public spaces requires a unique talent and the ability to engage an audience. Successful performers often gain a following and receive tips or donations. I’ve personally encountered the following street art performances:

  • Vilikazi street performances for tourists
  • Box dancing at traffic lights
  • Balloon folding at my local market

Woodworking and Carpentry: Handcrafted Wooden Creations

Woodworkers and carpenters create custom furniture, decor, and other wooden items. This craft requires skill, precision, and creativity. Successful businesses often focus on high-quality, unique pieces and excellent craftsmanship.

If you’re creating children’s toys, you could Learn more from Woodbender

Event Planning and Coordination

Event planners organize and coordinate events such as weddings, corporate functions, and parties. This role involves managing logistics, vendors, and clients to ensure a successful event. Successful event planners are highly organized and have excellent communication skills. Learn more from Wedding & Function and see successful planners like The Aleit Group 

Hairstyling and Makeup Hustles

The black hair care industry in South Africa is estimated to be worth between R4.5 billion and R9.7 billion annually. The market is divided into two categories: dry hair, which includes weaves, wigs, and extensions, and wet hair, which includes shampoos, conditioners, and relaxers. A conservative estimate of the market spend is R3 billion for dry hair and R1.5 billion for wet hair. Note that these are estimates, as most of the black hair care market is done in the informal economy.

It’s a massive industry for all races and genders – both the actual implementation and reselling of products and services. Check out companies such as Braiding spa,  saint nails  and makeup Gcinile for inspiration

Teach Music Lessons: Offer Music Lessons for Instruments or Voice

Many people enjoy singing or making music. And using this skill to hustle in South Africa can be very lucrative. branding yourself as a music teacher providing lessons can be the extra income you’ve desired. The awesome thing is this side hustle can be done in person or online.

Voice-Over Artist: Provide Voice-Over Services for Videos, Ads, and Audiobooks

Is voice artistry a thing? I’ve personally been asked to do a voice-over! Voice-over artists do the background voice for commercials, videos, audiobooks, and more. You might need some equipment or a home studio setup, but can be a fun side project.

Successful voice-over artists often have a diverse portfolio and strong networking skills. It is highly recommended to start a portfolio so potential clients can sample your work. Learn more from @Sinemivuyom (Sinemivuyo Mpulu) on Instagram is an excellent example in this field!


South Africa offers a rich tapestry of side business opportunities for enterprising individuals. By tapping into local demand, showcasing your skills, or offering unique services, you can turn your passion into a thriving side business. Whether you opt for service-based ventures, food and beverage offerings, or creative and skilled pursuits, these side business ideas have the potential to generate additional income streams and achieve personal and financial growth.

Embrace the entrepreneurial spirit and explore the diverse possibilities available in your local community.

Happy investing!


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