Side Hustle Nation 2023: Moonlighting & Daylighting Report

9 in 10 Americans Working a Full-Time Job and a Side Hustle

The majority of Americans would agree, it never hurts to have a little extra cash in your pocket. Sometimes it’s needed to help pay bills, or maybe there’s a big vacation or event (such as a wedding) where extra income is needed. To address this need, many Americans are working a side job, or side hustle, in addition to their full-time job. 

We conducted a study in 2022 to examine the state of side hustles in America, and a year later, the amount of Americans working side hustles remained the same.


Side Hustles 2023

93% of Americans who work a full-time job currently have a side hustle - study from insuranks.com


In a survey of more than 1,100 full-time working Americans, 9 in 10 (93%) currently work a side hustle. Broken down by generation, Gen X and Millennials are primarily working side hustles. In fact, more than half (52%) of working Millennials say they also work a side hustle.


Side Hustle Nation


Americans with a side hustle are making an average of $777 a month  - study from insuranks.com

When we took a closer look at working Americans with a side hustle, we found that on average, Americans are banking $777 a month from that hustle. Even if they aren’t working one of the side hustles that pay weekly, the additional monthly income can be helpful. More than a quarter just have one side hustle, 43% are working two, and about 3 in 10 have 3 or more side hustles. For more than half of respondents, taking surveys, such as this one, is their primary side hustle. 

Other common side hustles include selling items online, selling used clothing, selling handmade items, freelance writing, and driving for a rideshare app. 

The main reason Americans are taking on extra work is to help cover bills, to have extra cash, to help pay off debt, just for fun, and to save for a vacation. 

Nearly all Americans working a side job enjoy it, and 96% believe having the side hustle is worth it.

Daylighting and Moonlighting Jobs

A look at how Americans work both a full-time job and a side hustle - study from insuranks.com

The term “moonlighting” is not new, it refers to someone who works a side hustle. Prior to the COVID-19 pandemic, when full-time jobs often meant a commute to an office, side hustles were usually reserved for the evenings. Thus the term ‘moonlighting.’ Of Americans who currently work a side hustle, 3 in 5 know what this term means.

What is daylighting? It’s a newer term that refers to working a side hustle during the day, or ‘normal’ working hours. Since the pandemic caused a shift to remote work, this allowed people more flexibility in their full-time schedules and in their side hustles. This term is newer, and only 31% who work a side job know what it is.

More than half (55%) of Americans working a side hustle do so during their full-time job’s working hours. Among them, 1 in 10 have been caught by a coworker or manager working their side hustle. 

1 in 5 plan to take their side hustle and turn it into their full-time job, and 32% completely hide their side hustle from their full-time jobs. 

Of the Americans who work from home full-time, 86% say their work-from-home jobs allow them to work their side hustle, where an office job would not. 1 in 6 say recent return-to-office mandates hinder their ability to work their side hustles, and 41% say they would quit their full-time job if forced to return to an office.

Side Hustle Schedules


Americans with a side hustle are working an average of 15 hours a week - study from insuranks.com

When it comes to fitting that side hustle in your schedule, there’s a decent variety of when Americans are working in these gigs. There’s one element that makes side hustles appealing: flexibility. That may be why 2 in 5 Americans have been working their current side hustles for three or more years.

On average, Americans are working their side hustles 15 hours a week, and it’s a pretty even split between mornings, afternoons, and nights. Many Americans are working their side jobs all days of the week, but primarily they’re working Monday through Friday.

Full-time Jobs and Side Hustles

Between working their full-time job and working a side hustle, which do Americans prefer? - study from insuranks.com

At the end of the day, which do Americans prefer? More than half do not enjoy their side hustle more than their full-time job, but if given the chance, 55% would quit their full-time job if they made enough money solely working their side hustle. More than half (55%) add that they need the additional income from their side hustles to support themselves financially.

Full-time jobs still reign supreme when it comes to effort, with only 12% admitting to putting in more effort in their side hustle over their full-time job. 

Methodology

In July 2023, we surveyed 1,104 Americans who are employed full-time to see if they worked a side hustle. The rest of the survey consisted of data from the 1,030 Americans who work side hustles. Respondents were 50% female and 50% male, with an age range of 18 to 76 and an average age of 39 years old.

For media inquiries, contact media@insuranks.com

Fair Use

When using this data and research, please attribute by linking to this study and citing insuranks.com

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