We get it – you’re a busy nurse without a moment to spare, and you place a high value on the downtime you have outside of work, but you also want to find a few ways to make a little more cash on the side.
The good news is that we’re not going to suggest that you spend the next few years in start-up mode for a side hustle in the hope that it will one day be your multi-million-dollar full-time gig. Nor are we going to suggest that you spend your days off “Marie Kondo-ing” your house to host a garage sale in the hope that your BNWT Camilla kaftan will be the solution to your financial woes and paying off that credit card debt.
Sadly, making the extra cash to cover that well-earned holiday / trek to Nepal / new car / or save for your mortgage does take a bit of hard graft, so we’ve dug up some interesting ways to make additional cash quickly (and relatively easily), as well as some ways to save a little (or sometimes a lot) every day.
The Money Makers
Because every little bit counts.
1) Market research firms are always looking for people with an opinion about something and can be a great way to make a little extra cash on the side. And from our experience, they love nurses (because we know so much about such a broad range of subjects ; ) ChitChat Research, Paid Focus Groups and Research Connections are a few that can pay you up to $200 for an hour or so of your time in exchange for your views, through in-person focus groups, telephone interviews or online questionnaires. Casual uPaged nurse, Elizabeth, told us that she has never paid any additional car expenses (fuel, registration, annual service) since she signed up because she used all the funds from participating in research to fund the expense.
2) Clinical Trial firms are on the rise around Australia, and despite concerns about ethics and impartiality when candidates are paid to participate, an increasing number of reputable research facilities are endorsing them. Check out HealthMatch and the Australian Health and Medical Research Council listings at Australian Clinical Trials.
3) OK – so this one miiight technically be a side hustle, but how about making some extra cash, just by being … well, you? The Right Fit is a bit like uPaged – it cuts out the agency middleman (in this case, the talent agency middleman) and lets you search for gigs that are looking for regular (translate: real) people to appear in print and online advertising. One lucky nurse we know got picked (along with her 2 kids and partner) to appear in the advertising for a cruise line, spent 6 days at sea - all expenses paid - and received a very nice 4-figure talent fee - all for being photographed doing what regular folks do on a 6-day cruise holiday. Nice work!
4) So this one is definitely going to be considered another gig, but what if you could put all that medical knowledge to good use outside of the day job? If you have another super-power beyond nursing (for example, you can type at the speed of light; write like JK Rowling; win people over like Carrie Bickmore does, or be as relatable as Mia Freedman), Freelancer, Fiverr and UpWork are three great marketplaces to scout for extra jobs, or list your talent for hire. Medical transcriptionists, data entry specialists. medical researcher and summary writers, voice over artists, health writers, and even relationship advisors are in demand.
5) Sounds obvious, and we’ve got to give ourselves a plug here, because uPaged should be your go-to for when you want to pick up an extra shift. Whether you’re a career casual, a full-timer keen to pick up the occasional extra shift at another hospital, or an agency nurse who wants to work on shifts you choose across multiple hospitals, it’s really easy to get started.
Pop on over to www.uPaged.com, sign-up, download the App, and choose the shift you want, where you want, and at the rate you want. uPaged has an increasing pool of super hospitals (and super nurses) joining the platform every day, all of whom are loving the transparency, efficiency, quality and control they have. Not convinced? Check out our google reviews, nurse feedback and the App itself. Do yourself a favour and register now so you’re onboarded and all ready to go pick up an extra shift or few whenever you fancy.
The Money Savers
Never pay retail again!
6) If you’re a member of the union in your state, check to see what discounts are on offer with their partners. For example, members of the NSW Nurses & Midwives’ Association get big discounts on just about everything, from cars to electrical goods to health insurance and travel. Some Health Insurers and Credit Card Companies have similar offers, and then for utilities, One Big Switch might be your answer for cheaper energy bills.
7) SHOPPING: Spark some joy and save on everyday online shopping with money back systems like Cashback and Shopback where you can get up to 30% off shopping with stores that range from Amazon, Iconic and Dan Murphy to Coles, Myer and David Jones. So … all the places you shop at already. Register, shop, and see your balance increase. Then all you need to do is request payment and transfer the $ to your bank account of choice. Once registered, you can also get a link to spread to word amongst your friends and family, so when they shop and use them too, you get an additional incentive payment too.
FOOD: We all eat. If you want to save from 10% - 60% on dining out, check out EatClub.
FUEL: If you’re in NSW, download the FuelCheck App to find the cheapest fuel near you. And if the price displayed in FuelCheck doesn't match the price at the pump, Fair Trading will have their guts for garters. (Well, maybe not exactly, but Fair Trading will certainly be rather cranky, and the provider may get fined for false advertising). In QLD, there’s something similar called PetrolSpy, and in Victoria, try FuelPrice.
8) Tax time isn’t fun for anyone, but everything from overtime meals, travel, clothing (and repairs and laundering of uniforms), shoes, accessories (such as fob watches and a briefcase), personal protective gear (including gloves, safety glasses, vests, aprons and stockings), technology (mobile phone, laptop, internet), self-education and training course fees, professional memberships (union fees, APHRA registration etc), and stationery and textbooks have tax-deductible elements.
Keep your receipts (better yet, use the ATO Receipts App and remember - if your employer has reimbursed you for costs, you can’t then also claim the expense as a tax deduction. (Oh, and here’s our disclaimer – we’re not accountants – so you should check with yours to find out exactly what, and how much, you can claim). Need an accountant who specialises in tax for Nurses? Email us at hello@uPaged.com and we’ll connect you with our favourites.
9) Sure, retirement might sound boring now, but it won't be if you're spending it sailing around the Med on all the cash you’ve squirrelled away because of all that extra dosh you’re going to make through uPaged AND because you’ve invested it wisely.
Clever clogs invest in their futures. You can too by joining a super fund where you’re in full control, with simple hacks such as finding your lost super in minutes, linking your bank account to automatically round up spare change from everyday purchases and make regular monthly contributions.
Our friends over at Grow Super can help you with that, by putting the power of your super back in your hands, right where you can see it, so you have full visibility of where you are now, where you’re heading, and how to get there. Within a few minutes, you can be signed up via the App with all your super rolled into one place, and you can start making the decisions about where your investments are made. Simple as.
10) Wait, what? You’re paying the bank so they can make money out of your hard-earned nurses wages; they don’t pay you any (or very little) interest, and then they slug you with a recurring fee every month that wipes out any of the goodwill generated for the measly interest they give you with a hefty account keeping or international transaction fees? Stop. Right. Now.
Go check out ING (orange really is the new black), uBank and Me Bank – some of the banks out there that give you a direct debit card, high interest savings accounts, and charge you absolutely zip in monthly account keeping and international transaction fees. Happy days!
So … we’ve given you a head start, all you need to do now is to take ACTION! As the old Irish proverb says “You'll never plough a field by turning it over in your mind.”
Disclaimer: We’ve already told you we’re not accountants so you’ll need professional advice about what you can and can’t claim as a tax deduction. At uPaged, we’re all about transparency, so we’re doing the right thing and disclosing that the links to CashBack and ShopBack are what’s called referral links. What this means is that we might get a teeny tiny incentive for sharing the good word, if you sign up with them. As for everything else we’ve shared, we’re doing that from the goodness of our hearts, because we’ve either tried them out and use them ourselves, because our generous and kind uPaged nurses shared their hacks with us, or because we’ve investigated them thoroughly and truly feel they deliver value. Oh – and no one gave us anything in exchange for mentioning them in our guide.