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13-year-old’s creative side hustle earning him $250 a week

Teenager Jake has turned his passion into profit with this clever side hustle.

A composite image of Jake holding his chess trophies and Australia money to represent what he makes teaching chess as his side hustle.
Jake turned his passion for chess into a side hustle to buy a PlayStation 5. (Source: Provided / Getty)

Giacomo (Jake) Cargnelutti started playing chess when he was just five years old but now, at 13, he’s decided to turn his passion into a profitable side-hustle.

“I initially started teaching my seven-year-old brother, Zavier, and he’s now really good,” Jake told Yahoo Finance.

“I thought it would be cool to start a business doing it, so I decided to start teaching it and teach people of all ages, both in person and online. My dream is to become a chessmaster in the future.”


Jake said he loved playing chess because it involved strategic thinking and improved his problem-solving skills. And those skills came in handy when he wanted to earn some money for an expensive gaming console.

“I initially joined Airtasker and started teaching chess to save money for a Playstation 5, which I bought. I’m now saving for a car [for] when I’m older,” he said.

Charging around $35 for a lesson, Jake now earns around $200-$250 a week with students of all ages, and his mum runs his account.

“I’ve got about seven regular students and some casual clients so far – they’re improving their skill level and some represent their school,” he said.

“I’ve won lots of awards and trophies for local competitions, school tournaments and represented the school, winning our divisions for two years.”

Should kids work for money?

Aussie money guru, and author of The Barefoot Investor, Scott Pape previously told Yahoo Finance kids could benefit from working for their money - even if they just completed simple tasks at home.

“My biggest fear is that my kids could become spoiled brats, but there are two ways to guard against that,” Pape said.

“Learning to work hard and … to be generous and use your money to help others.”

Pape said that, while kids should be paid pocket money, they should be working for it. He said even little kids could do age-appropriate tasks.

“My little four-year-old daughter helps collect the eggs - some of them end up scrambled but that’s OK,” he said.

Side-hustle culture gaining pace

This comes as record numbers of Aussies are taking on multiple jobs to survive the cost-of-living crunch, with more than 950,000 holding down more than one job – an increase of 89,000 people over the past 12 months.

New data from Airtasker revealed a huge spike in demand for tutors, especially for adults wanting to get better at new hobbies.

“Learning to surf, improving their chess or basketball game, speaking a second language, and sewing are just some of the skills people are wanting in a hobby coach they are seeking on Airtasker,” Airtasker CEO Tim Fung.

“In the past 12 months, tutoring is a skillset that has seen one of the biggest surges in demand on the local marketplace, with a 15 per cent increase for those services.”

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