With the economy dipping into what many economists are saying will now be a deeper and longer recession than previously thought, many mystery shoppers are looking for ways to help their personal budgets. If you haven’t already been hit by hard times, you likely know of someone who has. And you want to hunker down and make as much money as you can right now. If you have been affected by the economic downturn, chances are you are just trying to make ends meet and perhaps find a way to pay your monthly bills or not eat into your nest egg more than you have to.
Mystery shopping is a great job because you can work as much or as little as you like. If you are unemployed, you may have plenty of time to pick up some extra assignments. Or if you are simply hunkering down and preparing for things that may come, you may be willing to put off a lunch with co-workers to complete a paying assignment on your lunch break at work. Either way, the good news is that mystery shopping can definitely help your personal budget during these hard economic times!
Make More Money! If you don’t have anything panned for today, tomorrow, or even next week, schedule an extra mystery shopping assignment or two. Make it a goal to fill up most of the free time in your schedule with extra jobs, and soon you will see more money flowing into your wallet. Don’t think of free time only as a time when you have an entire afternoon free. Often, there are assignments you can complete near your office over lunch, or on your way to or from work. You may be able to pick up another assignment while you drop the kids off at soccer practice. Or you can combine your normal day-to-day errands with mystery shopping, such as picking up an extra grocery store assignment so you can earn money while you buy your weekly groceries. Or sign up for a gas station assignment to help fill your tank.
Ask For More Money! If you really want to earn extra money, you may have to go outside of the normal area you mystery shop in and expand your horizons. If you normally don’t do mystery shop assignments farther then ten miles from your house, you may need to look at assignments fifteen or twenty miles out to make more money. While the cost of gas has decreased significantly, it certainly doesn’t hurt to ask for additional travel pay for not only your travel expense but also your time to travel to that farther location.
Even if you aren’t given travel pay, you can consider booking an extra assignment or two while you are out and about at that farther location to get more money for your travel time. You can also try to make it a special event to travel. Often a mystery shop assignment will either be at or close to a location where your family can spend some time and have a little fun. Perhaps the assignment is close to a park you don’t usually frequent, or a mall where the family can do some window shopping. Your family can explore the area near your assignment location while you earn a little money, and then you can join them for a few hours of fun before you head time. This way, you can make an adventure out of your mystery shopping assignment and still write off your gas mileage (or possibly even get reimbursed for your travel efforts.)
Make Your Travels Pay! An economic downturn may not seem like the ideal time to travel for leisure. Often, however, you have to travel out of town. You may be traveling for business or for a family event, such as a wedding or birthday. Get paid while you travel by picking up an extra assignment in the airport. Or if you are driving, you can search for assignments in the many cities you will pass through on your way to your destination. When you get to your destination, you can pick up another assignment or two as well.
Whether you live alone, are an empty-nester, or have eight children, chances are you can find some extra windows of free time where you can work in a few extra mystery shopping assignments. Think about what it would mean to your household budget if you regularly picked up another couple of assignments each week. Use this extra (and much needed) money as motivation to complete extra mystery shopping assignments in your free time, and soon you will see extra money flowing in!