[Guide] GTA Online Best Ways To Make Money For Beginners (Top 10 Ways)

Beginners money making methods in GTA Online
Making good money isn't that hard

Being an amateur doesn’t mean you should be a brokie

The number of missions, races, activities, and businesses you can take part in GTA Online is borderline endless. You just can’t fathom participating in everything the game has to offer. Plus, the payout of every hustle is different. Don’t expect to make fat stacks of money by completing missions that are super hard, and vice versa. That’s just the sad reality of GTA Online these days.  

As a beginner, you shouldn’t feel overwhelmed with all the phone calls you’ll receive and the abundance of activities you can do, once you step foot in Los Santos, because this guide is here to help you avoid spending time on activities and missions that pay garbage and instead look into money making avenues that are going to prove lucrative overtime. 


10. Los Santos Flight School

The Flight School

Once you reach rank 6, you’ll be eligible to take part in the Flight School located at Los Santos airport. Getting your hands on a plane early in the game will also help in leveling up your flying skills. Starting off at the Flight School is the best way to do it, as once you achieve gold in all 10 lessons, you’ll bag GTA$ 232,500. 

The Flight School is marked with an encircled airplane icon on the map. 

To participate in the Flight School:

  • Go to the Flight School at the airport.
  • Enter the school.
  • You’ll have to complete 10 solo lessons that teach you: combat maneuvering, low-flying challenges, formation flying, and more. 
  • Complete each lesson successfully to unlock the next.
  • Make sure you get a gold medal in all lessons to unlock maximum rewards.


9. Time-Trials


A great freemode event in GTA Online is the Time-Trial. What most players don’t realize is that it’s an easy way to earn GTA$ 100,000+ in just a few minutes. Although it’s a weekly event and you’ll have to wait for an entire week for the next Time-Trial, you shouldn’t just let the opportunity go to waste as a beginner. 

The Time-Trial is marked with an icon of a stopwatch on the map. 

To complete the Time-Trial:

  • Go to the location of the Time-Trial.
  • Start the event and familiarize yourself with the ending location of the run. Mark it with a location marker.
  • End the event through your phone and start again. This way, you’ll have the ending point marked on your map before you start the second time.
  • You can easily find videos on YouTube that highlight the best path to take for the Time-Trial.
  • Make sure you have a fast bike to complete the Time-Trial. The Pegassi Bati 801 is a great beginner’s bike for it.

Plus, once you buy an RC Bandito later in your criminal career, you’ll unlock a separate time trial for it. This will help you earn an extra GTA$ 100,000+ every week through the RC Bandito Time-Trials.


8. Selling stolen cars

Grand Theft Auto

In the true essence of the Grand Theft Auto series, your first step in making money should be off of stolen vehicles. Whether you steal a car with passengers in it or break into one parked by the road, you can take them to your nearest Los Santos Customs and sell them for a few thousand bucks. 

Of course, this is not a long-term sustainable strategy to earn money. Plus, there’s also a cooldown time of an in-game day once you sell a stolen vehicle. But it’s a very straightforward and fast way for beginners. The payouts can be anywhere between GTA$ 1,000 to GTA$ 10,000 depending on the vehicle type and condition.

To start selling stolen vehicles:

  • Find a car to steal. High-end cars will give your more money once you sell them.
  • Take it to the nearby LS Customs. It’ll be marked on the map with a spray can icon.
  • Drive inside, and from the customization menu, scroll down to sell.
  • Click on sell and you’ll receive the money.

Some cars can’t be sold, as they’re “too hot” to be sold. You can have a look at the list of vehicles you can and cannot sell here.


7. One-time quests


Once you enter GTA Online for the first time, there are three different quests you can do to earn money pretty easily. They are Bounty Hunting, Los Santos Slasher, and Treasure Hunt. All three missions reward you with a weapon, with which you need to complete a challenge to receive a hefty bonus. With all three missions fully completed, you’ll receive an accumulated amount of GTA$ 825,000.

You might say: how is it easy to earn money through missions that make you travel all over the map? Well, the best thing is you can easily find the locations with a guide or a labeled map.

The three missions are completed as follows:

  • Bounty Hunting: Capture and deliver all five people with bounties to Maude. You’ll unlock the location of a stone hatchet. Collect the hatchet and kill 25 people to receive a total of GTA$ 250,000 from this mission.
  • Los Santos Slasher: Collect the five clues scattered across the map. Use this map. Once you collect the clues, a slasher will text you and appear in Blaine County between 7 pm and 5 am. Kill the slasher and you’ll receive a Navy Revolver. Get 50 kills with the revolver and you’ll receive a total of GTA$ 275,000 from this mission.
  • Treasure Hunt: Once you receive an email from [email protected], you can start looking for a total of four clues across the map. Use this map. Once you collect all the clues, you’ll receive a Double-Action Revolver at the final location. Get 50 headshots with the revolver and receive a total of GTA$ 250,000. 
  • To complete the weapon challenges, it’s suggested you start the mission “Pier Pressure” and take out NPCs at Vespucci Beach. The cops won’t chase you.


6. Becoming a Bodyguard/Associate

High Profile work

Working as a Bodyguard/Associate in GTA Online is a fun way for you to earn money as a beginner. You work for a VIP/CEO and complete jobs and challenges with them. Moreover, you must protect your boss and make sure they don’t die. Or else, you get a cut taken from your salary. Yes, in addition to the payouts for the jobs and challenges you do with your boss, you get GTA$ 5,000 salary every 15 minutes for being a Bodyguard/Associate.

Becoming a Bodyguard/Associate is one of those fun activities in the game that also somewhat boosts your sense of camaraderie with other players. You can make good friends in the game this way.

To become a Bodyguard/Associate:

  • Open your interaction menu.
  • Scroll down and select SecuroServ.
  • Then set the “Looking for Work” option to “On”.
  • You’ll receive an invite on your phone from VIPs or CEOs in the lobby who want to hire. 
  • Keep an eye out for Bonus Weeks in the game, as sometimes Bodyguards/Associates will have boosted salary payouts.


5. Races


Driving skillfully in GTA Online is an art that you should start practicing the moment you log in. The cars in the game aren’t just for running errands or escaping the LSPD. You can use them for races and make a boatload of money by winning. 

There are various markers for races spread across the entire map. You can either go to one of the markers and start a race, or you can simply access the jobs menu and select the race you want to play. The payouts for races vary and there are numerous factors that dictate the payout. You can expect to earn an average of GTA$ 20,000 to GTA$ 30,000 by winning a fairly populated race.

To start a race:

  • Go to Rockstar Created Jobs through the pause menu.
  • Select one of the many categories of races from there.
  • Adjust the race settings and wait for people to join.
  • Choose a fast and controllable car.
  • Once the race starts, try to get a boosted start by hitting the gas at “GO”.
  • Keep an eye out for Bonus Weeks in the game, as sometimes Races will have boosted payouts.


4. Contact Missions

Objective-driven work

In GTA Online, Contact Missions are basically missions you do for various characters from the story mode, and a few new characters exclusive to GTA Online, in exchange for healthy sums of money. This is Rockstar’s way of keeping the story mode characters somewhat relevant in GTA Online.

For beginners, it’s a praiseworthy way of making a decent income and keeping up with the shenanigans of the person you do the missions for. As you rank up, you’ll unlock more missions. 

The payouts for these missions have multiple variables. You can expect to earn GTA$ 20,000+ on average if the missions are completed within a set timeframe. A general rule of thumb is: the longer you spend time doing the mission, the higher the payout percentages will go.

To do a Contact Mission:

  • You can either phone the relevant NPC to request a job, wait for their text message for a mission, go to the initial letter of their name marked on the map, or simply start one of the missions in the missions list through the pause menu.
  • Once you start the mission, make sure to set the difficulty to “Hard” in order to receive maximum payouts.
  • Follow whatever instructions are given and complete the mission successfully. 
  • Keep an eye out for Bonus Weeks in the game, as sometimes Contact Missions will have boosted payouts.


3. Hosting the OG Heists

Old school way to make money

Heists were first introduced in GTA Online back in early 2015. They have been, to say the least, one of the greatest additions to the game. They directed a pathway for players to all the future storyline-related updates that were released. 

There were a total of five heists released for the update, namely: Fleeca Job, Prison Break, Humane Labs Raid, Series A Funding, and Pacific Standard Job. By completing all five in order as a host, you can expect to earn around GTA$ 2,000,000+, provided you give fair cuts to your crew members.

To start the heists:

  • Reach rank 12 and own a high-end apartment.
  • Lester will give you a call to set up your first heist. Visit him at the garment factory.
  • For the first heist, you will need another player to complete the setups and finale with you.
  • For the remaining four heists, the process is similar. This time, you will need 3 additional players to complete the setups and finale with you.
  • To get dedicated crew members, it’s recommended you find players off of popular GTA Online Discord servers.


2. VIP Work

Big Boss business

As a VIP of an organization, you can start VIP Work and complete simple and straight-to-the-point missions to earn decent money. There are a total of 17 VIP Work missions you can do, mostly solo, but a few that require a friend to start. 

To become a VIP, you will need to have at least a million dollars in your Maze bank account. With all the methods to earn money discussed earlier, making your first million shouldn’t take too long. 

Depending on the mission, you can earn anywhere from GTA$ 10,000 up to GTA$ 35,000. 

To work as a VIP:

  • Start an organization by registering as a VIP through the interaction menu. Select SecuroServ and register as a VIP. Keep in mind that you can register as a VIP for 4 hours only. 
  • Scroll down and select VIP Work.
  • Start your desired mission.

There’s a cooldown time for each mission. In the meantime, you can continue playing other VIP Work missions. “Sightseer” and “Headhunter” are the best to be played back-to-back, as they have just a 10-minute cooldown time and pay GTA$ 20,000+ each.


1. Joining heists

Just helping others out

As a novice in GTA Online, you will have to go through a number of jobs and heists to gain useful experience in the game. Lucky for you, there’s not a significant learning curve to all the jobs and missions in the game. Especially with heists, you can learn the patterns fairly easily by doing them a couple of times. Regardless, YouTube is stacked with guides for all the heists in the game, and following them to the second is not a tedious task.

What many players don’t realize is that there’s a shortcut to gaining heist experiences while making a great deal of money in tandem. It’s through joining heists of other players looking for a crew member. As a crew member, you won’t necessarily have to run all the setups of the heist. You can straight away join heist finales. 

Here’s the best way to do it:

  • Join one of the popular Discord servers for GTA V and GTA Online. To name a few, TGG’s Gorilla Gang, GTA Online, and GTA Series Videos are quite active.
  • Scroll down to “Looking for Group” or “Looking for Players” channel in the servers. From there, you can find players looking for others to help them out with missions and heists. You’ll be surprised how many people actively look for crew members to help them with the Diamond Casino Heist finale.
  • Request the respective player to invite you to their heist. Just make sure you know the ins and outs of the heist they’re seeking help for.
  • Once you’re invited, just complete the heist as quickly as possible. Later on, you can again hop on to Discord to look for other players looking for help. 

It’s a really fast way to earn money in the game, as most of the time you’ll be skipping the heist setups, and you will be helping other players repeatedly.



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The one and only gaming guru, the button-mashing bandit... Faisal! When not dominating the digital realm, he can be found fueling up with shawarma and practicing victory dances in front of the mirror.
Gamer Since: 1999
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Currently Playing: GTA Online, Omno, art of rally, Golf With Your Friends
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