South Africa: Side Hustles Ideas You Can Do!

Let’s make some cash with these side hustle ideas in South Africa! Here you will find so many opportunities, ideas, and wonderful and inspiring stories – from skills (read: things you love) to selling and reselling items.

If you’re looking for more hustle ideas, you can check out part 2 through he link. Let’s explore some interesting side hustles in South Africa – and a few normal ones in between.

Are you interested in coaching, property hustles, food hustles, or buying and selling hustles, then maybe this article is for you!

Side Hustles based on skill or interest

Tailor or Seamstress: Provide Clothing Alteration and Sewing Services

We have a friend who works in Sandton. She required a quick fix on one of her shoes and asked one of the people sitting next to the street if they were willing to do a quick fix. They did it at an absolute bargain. However, we know that not everyone has the time or interest to sit next to the street. Therefore, you might want to opt to make custom clothes or do alterations for a more exclusive market.

Car Detailing: Thorough Vehicle Cleaning and Restoration

Car detailing involves cleaning and restoring vehicles to a high standard, both inside and out. This service is popular among car enthusiasts and those who take pride in their vehicles. Successful detailers often offer mobile services and use high-quality products. Check out the tall detailed!

We’ve had a lot of car trouble recently. Getting someone to fix our car on the side has been a fun exercise – but totally worth it.

Bookkeeping and accounting hustle

Bookkeepers manage financial records, invoices, and payroll for businesses. This service is essential for small business owners who need help with their finances. Successful bookkeepers often have strong accounting skills and attention to detail. You might think you’re in competition with Sage or Xero, but can offer a lot more personalised service – especially to medium-sized companies who need assistance.

Direct Sales and Entrepreneurship

Direct Selling: Network Marketing

Direct selling involves marketing and selling products directly to consumers through a network. Many companies offer products that can be sold to friends, family and acquaintances.

Companies like Avon offer beauty and wellness products that can be sold part-time, whereas Amway and Herbalife have products that you can buy. The latter two companies follow a network marketing model, which I don’t particularly like – but works for some people.

Import/Export Consulting: Guidance on International Trade

Import/export consultants help businesses navigate international trade, including sourcing products and managing logistics. This service requires knowledge of global markets and trade regulations. Successful consultants often have experience in international business and strong networking skills. Check out  vendor lists in Botswana

Antique Dealing: Buying and Selling Collectibles

I have a friend who collects rocks. He buys and sells minerals, rare crystals and rocks. I have bought some sugilite and alexandrite from him previously – and it’s a beautiful addition to my wife’s jewellery set. On the other hand, I collect bank notes, specialising in 1985 Gerhard de Jongh replacement banknotes. To other people, this might not mean anything – but to those who know, well…

A side hustle in trading in collectables and antiques can be VERY lucrative, however, you need to know what you’re buying. If you buy worthless things, you will be running at a loss!

Renewable Energy Consulting: Solar Panel Installation and Advice

Renewable energy consultants advise clients on sustainable energy solutions, including solar panel installations. This service requires knowledge of renewable energy technologies and regulations. Successful consultants often have a background in engineering or environmental science.

With the current power situation, having this as a side hustle in SA can move you forward!

Flexible Local Side Hustles

Work Remotely as a Call Center Agent

Remote call centre agents handle customer service and support calls for companies. This job can be done from home, offering flexibility and convenience. Successful agents often have strong communication skills and the ability to handle difficult customers. Learn more from iContact BPO.

You can also consider becoming a virtual assistant and helping people like me managing my day better.

Task Running and Errand Services

Task runners and errand services help busy individuals with everyday tasks such as shopping, deliveries, and household chores. This service offers flexibility and convenience to clients. Successful task runners often have good time management skills and reliability. 

Standing in Line for Government Services

Offering to stand in line for others at government offices can save people significant time and hassle. This service is particularly useful for busy individuals who cannot afford to spend hours waiting. Success in this field requires punctuality, patience, and good customer service. 

Participating in Research Studies 

Participating in research studies involves taking part in scientific or medical research in exchange for compensation. This can include clinical trials, surveys, and focus groups. Successful participants often follow study guidelines closely and provide accurate information. Companies like Synexus and Parexel might have positions open, however, I’m not sure that you want an extra pair of legs or kidney removal surgery.

Delivery & Transportation Side Hustles in South Africa

Ride Share Driver (Uber, Bolt)

Although ride-share drivers use their personal vehicles to transport passengers via apps like Uber and Bolt, there has been an increase in pimping out vehicles to drivers for mutual profit. This flexible job is a great way to meet (and network with) people and allow drivers to set their own schedules.

Delivery Driver (Mr D Food, Uber Eats)

With the rise of Checkers 60/60, motorbikes seem to be taking over cities like Johannesburg. Delivery drivers transport food and packages using apps like Mr D Food and Uber Eats. This job offers flexible hours and the opportunity to earn tips. Successful drivers often have good navigation skills and reliable transportation. Learn more from Mr D Food and Uber Eats South Africa 

Rent Out Your Parking Space

Renting out a parking space can provide a steady income, especially in busy areas with limited parking. This service is useful for commuters, event-goers, and residents. Success depends on location and clear communication with renters. 

For example, I own a few flats in the same complex. I am aware that parking is scarce, and am renting my unused parking spaces to other tenants. I’ve had a parking space bring in as much as R 450 per month!

Rent Out Your Vehicle

Renting out your vehicle allows you to earn extra income when it’s not in use. This service is popular among travellers and people needing temporary transportation. Success often comes from offering well-maintained vehicles and clear rental terms. Learn more from RentMyRide and Drive South Africa.

Selling Items & Reselling Side Hustles in South Africa

Buying, making and reselling items can help fill that little hole in your wallet. You can buy products off Temu, Wish or from Bid or Buy. There are also lots of Chinese wholesalers to be found out there in places like the Red Dragon Mall in Johannesburg. I know someone selling socks and restocks in China Mall!

You can also sell on the following platforms:

  • Social media (Facebook/Instagram)
  • An eCommerce site (WordPress, Shopify, Etsy)
  • Amazon or Takealot
  • Farmers markets // Antique markets // food markets
  • Directly to clients (e.g. to jewellers as below)
  • Gumtree South Africa or OLX – please don’t sell cars here. Smaller products tend to do really well!

What types of products can I buy and resell?

  • Collectables – Pokemon cards, bank notes, paintings, rare tea sets, or even ancient Bayer heroin bottles
  • Jewellery – Krugerrands, precious and semi-precious stones, precious metals, etc. You can sell these to jewellers. As a child, my friend’s dad was a radiologist. He often brought home silver droplets, which I kept for more than 20 years. I am now guessing it was a byproduct of the machines – probably silver nitrate.
  • Kitchen utensils – especially gadgets. Okay, fine. I have a thing for kitchen gadgets. I love them. And I buy them if they’re helpful.
  • Pet accessories – It’s worth mentioning again. It’s a massive industry!
  • Special flour imported from Colombia or soap – there are always opportunities for those who seek them.

Hustle with Handmade Products

As you know, I studied graphic design at university. When people tell me they have a new craft that they want to sell, I generally start vomiting in my mouth. Because they make things no one wants and have no idea if they have a market. But in many cases successful sellers create a unique brand and strong online presence. And they do this successfully. For example, I know someone who quit her job and started selling macaroons. She has a niche, exclusive offering positioned to attract people with serious money. Here are some other examples of products:

  • Handmade soap
  • Candles
  • Sauces (I love chilli sauces!)
  • clay jewellery
  • scents and perfume mixing – I know of someone who repackages expensive perfumes in small packages to make it affordable to the mass market. Brilliant idea!  


South African side hustle ideas are a dime a dozen. And finding more ideas is 100% possible. But executing and doing those ideas… well that’s a different thing. Therefore, it’s most valuable when you find something that you’re good at and enjoy and turn that into a side hustle.

Get into action and start creating, building and hustling!

Happy investing!


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