Are there any viable work at home [internet] based business to make a few hundred dollars a month?
March 23, 2009 5:22 PM   Subscribe

Are there any viable work at home [internet] based business to make a few hundred dollars a month?

I'm young (23) and my field of work has slowed down a bit. I'm not making the money I once was. I'm coming up between $200-$500/month short on my expenses, which has yet to be a real problem because of savings.
Soon I'll run out of savings, and my parents (great people that they are) are more than willing to lend me a hand in the money department (for the foreseeable future). That's all well and good, but I'd like to make money for myself if I could.
Unfortunately a second job will not work, as my current job has very weird and odd hours, with events being scheduled with less than an hours notice sometimes. As this job is more a means to an end of furthering my career rather than just something to pay the bills it's more important that I can work the odd hour here and there than be unable too because I'm working retail or something somewhere.

So what are some ways I could make some money online? Again I'm not looking to make a 'living' online just some extra money.
I sell stuff on ebay here and there, and know how that all works. I've looked into the companies that drop ship, the items I sell on ebay but I'm not sure if there is money to be made there.

Also; my skill set is very specialized (helicopter pilot/instructor) so if there was some way I could work that in that be awesome.

Mostly just looking for input from people, not looking for a get rich quick scheme by any means, and I also know it often takes money to make money.
posted by blackout to Work & Money (14 answers total) 26 users marked this as a favorite
You could potentially secure Pabst money with Mechanical Turk.
posted by turgid dahlia at 5:40 PM on March 23, 2009 I have an article (how to find free flight simulator games online) that is making a dollar a day. And I've only written 16 articles so far, all during the past two weeks.
posted by spacefire at 5:47 PM on March 23, 2009 [1 favorite]

also, I envy you for the ratings! :)
posted by spacefire at 5:48 PM on March 23, 2009

Response by poster: Don't envy the $80K I spent on them...
posted by blackout at 6:25 PM on March 23, 2009

Can you teach others online the basics of helicopter flying? Or at least offer lessons on how to use a flight simulator? You could charge 30 bucks an hour and do it ten hours a month. You would have to have some sort of program that allows you to see the other person's computer screen but I'm sure it can be done.

If not, make a YouTube of you flying a helicopter and have lots of clips of you teaching others. Then offer to give constructive criticism of other people's flying by reviewing their videos at 30 dollars a shot (or whatever price is worth it).

I'm surprised you can't just teach more hours a month with the job you already have. Best of luck!
posted by fantasticninety at 6:32 PM on March 23, 2009

Response by poster: fantasticninety: I'd love to work/teach more than I do. But the problem comes in that it's $265/hour for a student to fly a helicopter with me... Thus the slow down as people are spending their money else where.
posted by blackout at 6:39 PM on March 23, 2009

Are there any aircraft or helicopter forums/online magazines which might welcome a new expert columnist for $x per column? (I think $x is typically about $50, but I don't know.)

I make about the amount you are seeking per month through eBay affiliate sales, but the folks who visit my site, generally speaking, use eBay specifically to look for stuff that is directly related to my content.

For me, I have not found any other affiliate program to be worth diddly, but, again, my site is pretty narrow.
posted by maxwelton at 7:34 PM on March 23, 2009 [1 favorite]

Go to all the yard sales and garage sales in your neighborhood. Buy anything that looks like it has value. Haggle down to next to nothing. Put these items on ebay. You could make $100 a month just doing this on the weekends, especially if you have basic tech repair skills. The more technophobe the area you are in the better, as they may not know how to put these items on ebay.
posted by damn dirty ape at 7:36 PM on March 23, 2009

...the problem comes in that it's $265/hour for a student to fly a helicopter with me...

The market's standard response to a recession is to lower prices to attract buyers. Could you lower your rate, work more hours, make more money? Branch out to other heliports, offer your services there at lower rates?
posted by exphysicist345 at 8:10 PM on March 23, 2009

Response by poster: Exphysicist345: I'm just an employee I have nothing to do with setting prices. I get paid by the billable hour. So me just 'working more hours' isn't going to make me any money. Unless I'm with a student I'm not getting paid because the school isn't getting paid.
To help put it in perspective of that $265/hour, I make $25.00. Both of those amounts are standards in the industry, we're actually a little on the cheap side.

DDA: That sounds like a decent idea, I'll check it out tomorrow when I'm out and about.

Still would love more ideas.
posted by blackout at 8:50 PM on March 23, 2009

I'm not in the industry, but doesn't flight training of any kind also include verbal/written instruction and testing in addition to the in-air training?

You're either an FFA official or certified instructor, I'm guessing, so you should be knowledgeable enough to create a tutorial or guide to helping folks learn what they need for the "on-the-ground" training that can supplement any official manuals or other items for when people get into the real thing.

A quick search shows that avg trainign costs is around $12,500 so a guide for what a student should know before getting into Helo Piloting and "Things your instructor forgot to tell you" Could possibly sell for $49.95 or so.

It's not immediate cash, but writing up a guide, getting some edits and graphic design for a website and a little promotion should be able to land you a few sales a month.

Worth a shot? (Check out the Book 4-Hour Workweek for some details on testing out this idea ALMOST free.)
posted by emjay at 7:09 AM on March 24, 2009

I had a ball in grad school working as a mystery shopper. I signed up with all the companies that had 'shops' in my area (identify them here). I easily made $300/month, plus frequent freebies, by doing about 3-5 shops a week. Shops must be done within a certain time period, but your actual schedule is up to you, so it'll fit in with your real job.
posted by oceanmorning at 10:46 PM on March 24, 2009

Just opened the newspaper today. St. Thomas, Ontario Canada is opening a brand new "Central Helicopter Training Academy" or call (519)-6370711

Good luck!!!
posted by Taurid at 10:38 AM on March 25, 2009

sorry.....there should have been a dash inserted above
....(519)- 637-0711 not that it really matters I guess......just looks odd
posted by Taurid at 10:43 AM on March 25, 2009

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