[Top 6] Best Ways to Make Money in Red Dead Online

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Enjoying a Cigar

What are the best ways to get rich in the Wild West?

In 1900 one dollar was worth nearly 30 dollars today with current inflation, so it should not come entirely as a shock when a given activity only nets you a couple of bucks in RDO. Earning even 10 dollars for a given activity is nothing to sneer at, however, the in-game economy can still seem a bit stingy. There are a few activities in RDO that can help you rise from your status as a frontier vagabond and purchase all the trappings of the wealthiest robber barons along the way. Here are the six best money making methods in RDO.   

6. Story Missions

Most online multiplayer worlds have some narrative elements to shape the world you play in and introduce you to the activities you will be taking part in. RDO is no different, and the story missions will offer some much-needed cash to the new player. In particular the mission, “Kill Them, Each and Every One,” will get you a couple hundred bucks.  

How much money can you make from story missions

  • Playing all available story missions for the first time will get you a few hundred dollars in total, though earnings vary
  • There is a bonus for the first time playing each mission, so playing them again will not earn you as much
  • Great way to grab some early cash  

How to do it

  • The story missions show up as yellow markers on the map for players that have not completed the campaign yet
  • Go to a marked area and talk with the character that provides the mission to start 
  • After completing the campaign, the missions can be replayed in the menu or a player can choose to be “On-Call” to help another player looking for help while they complete the story


5. PvP Activities

Competitive play in RDO comes from several sources and might be the most fun (least grindy) way to make that money.  Competitive combat games can be found in the menu under Featured Series, Shootout Series, Takeover Series, and Elimination Series.   Featured Series is usually a playlist of game modes that changes from time to time, Shootout Series has several game modes akin to a standard team-deathmatch game, Takeover Series is more objective oriented like a conquest or domination game mode, and Elimination Series has several game modes that are similar to a battle royale. There is also competitive horse racing which is called Race Series and features several types of races that sometimes include a combat element.

How much money can you make from PvP

  • Earnings from PvP vary based on the game mode, performance, and time spent
  • Horse racing can take longer than combat game modes and doesn’t earn as much unless the race takes a particularly long time
  • Most combat modes take under 10 minutes and will net you roughly $5-$10 and a little gold (there is a lot of variation in earnings) with the potential for more if you are the MVP or do particularly well
  • Games continue uninterrupted so with an hour of PvP you can potentially earn $100, though once again it varies

How to do it

  • There are posts marked around the map that you can interact with that will put you in a specific PvP game mode
  • The easiest way to enter a PvP game mode is to access it through the menu and choose which type you want to play 

4. Daily Challenges

There are two currencies to contend with in RDO: money and gold bars. Gold bars can be purchased for real money (in the game store) and is a currency that is exclusively required for some purchases (this includes starting a new role), and it can be used as a substitute for the virtual cash. While activities like Stranger Missions, PvP games, and Free Roam Events can earn you a meager quantity of gold, completing daily challenges for consecutive days can increase your intake of this more exclusive currency.  

How much money can you make from completing daily challenges 

  • Every day you are offered 8 daily challenges, 7 will ask you to complete some random task and pay 0.2 gold bars, and the last will pay 0.6 gold bars if you complete the previous 7 tasks
  • Initially completing all activities in the daily challenge will net you 2 gold bars a day 
  • After 21 days of completing challenges, you can earn 5 gold bars a day 

How to do it

  • Daily Challenges show up in your menu and will ask you to perform any number of random tasks if you complete a task it will be marked as complete and you will receive the reward
  • Completing even one challenge a day will continue a streak which will multiply the reward at 7-day intervals
  • After 21 days of completing even one challenge a day, that streak will multiply your reward by 2.5 netting you 5 gold bars a day if you complete all challenges  


3. Hunting and Fishing

RDO features a vast map full of all matter of wildlife. A noble elk, grumpy bear, or even the trout in the river are more than part of the scenery; they are cash waiting to be grabbed. Hunting effectively is a little more nuanced than blasting critters, you want to use an appropriate weapon and prioritize hunting 3-star animals to really see a profit. Likewise, fishing is more than casting a line, there are specific fish you want and appropriate tackle and locations used to nab them. In the end, the items you get from hunting and fishing can actually fetch you some serious cash.  

How much money can you make from Hunting and Fishing

  • Hunting varies a lot in potential earnings, it depends on the quality of animal you encounter or if you even find animals (it is harder to find animals than it used to)
  • Fishing is a more consistent moneymaker, medium-sized fish (Steelhead Trout, Smallmouth Bass, Largemouth Bass, and Sockeye Salmon) are easy to catch and you can store 10 of each in your inventory
  • The trout and salmon sell for $2.50 and both bass species sell for $2.00 which sounds meager but you can catch them very quickly in the right regions
  • With luck you can fill up ten slots for both bass species, the trout, and the salmon in one hour and sell them all for a total of $90     

How to do it

  • Hunting can be as simple as stumbling across a raccoon and shooting it, however, using the games hunting and tracking mechanics, an appropriate weapon, and taking the time to spot and accurately shoot an animal will get you high-quality goods for sale
  • Fishing requires purchasing a fishing rod, lures (river and lake lures are best) or bait, and finding a river, pond, swamp, or lake where you can cast a line 
  • Take the items you have attained from both to a butcher and sell them

2. Trader Role

All the roles in RDO are a great opportunity to make money and unlock special equipment, though you will have some overhead. The trader role banks on your hunting skills and is a more lucrative way of using the animal products you accrue from hunting. With the trader role, you will finally put Cribbs to work by giving him the raw animal products (preferably animal carcasses that you have not skinned) instead of the butcher. He will then work on them to prepare them for a shipment that you will periodically take for a large cash prize.

How much money can you make from the Trader Role

  • Once your operation is fully upgraded a short delivery (other players cannot interfere) will earn you $500 and a long delivery (other players can interfere) will earn you $650
  • The time it takes in between deliveries varies and will require you to hunt and potentially do resupply missions for Cribbs, though at peak efficiency it is usually several hours

How to do it

  • First, in order to unlock this role, you will need to meet Cripps at a marked location then you will be given the opportunity to purchase the crafting table which costs 15 Gold Bars (so make sure you do those daily challenges)
  • Once you have started the Trader role you will need to hunt to keep bringing animal carcasses to Cripps
  • You can either periodically pay $20 or go on missions to fetch material that Cripps needs to package your animal products
  • At any point, though it is more lucrative to wait until the shipment is full, you can go on a delivery mission and get paid upon completion

1. Moonshiner Role

The new Moonshiner Role is a blast that comes with its own new series of challenging story missions. You get the opportunity to evade the law and beat the competition selling illegal moonshine. This new role has its similarities to the trader role, however, it is a little more passive and allows you more free time to do other things in between payouts. Ideally, you can do this role while performing the tasks of another role to really make those ducats.   

How much money can you make from the Moonshiner Role

  • Once your operation is fully upgraded you can earn about $240 for a shipment of moonshine which costs between $50 and $30 to make
  • It takes about one hour to prepare a shipment of the highest quality moonshine 
  • At peak efficiency, you can be making about $200 an hour with this role

How to do it

  • First, in order to unlock this role, you will need to meet Cripps at a location where you will be introduced to Maggie Fike who will charge 25 gold bars to start the moonshine operation and your new role 
  • There are a couple of story missions you will need to complete to get the operation running as well
  • Once the operation is going you purchase sour mash at your new moonshine shack which costs $50 
  • The price of sour mash can be reduced down to $30 by periodically performing “Bootlegger Missions” (these aren’t the story missions you unlock with this role but shorter tasks)
  • Then you have to flavor the mash which will increase its value but requires specific ingredients 
  • After cooking for some time (depends on the strength of the moonshine), you do a delivery mission which will result in you getting paid

Also Be Sure To Read:

[Top 10] Red Dead Online Best Weapons (And How To Get Them)

[Top 6] Best Ways to Make Money in Red Dead Online

Best Repeaters in Red Dead Online

[Top 10] Best Ability Cards in Red Dead Online

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A science-fiction connoisseur and history junky, I enjoy exploring the nuanced plots, stunning worlds, and fascinating lore provided by the most engrossing games out there.
Gamer Since: 2000
Favorite Genre: RPG
Currently Playing: Battlefield V, Rainbow Six Siege, The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt, Red Dead Redemption 2 (RDO), Remnant: From the Ashes
Top 3 Favorite Games:The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt, Battlefield 4, Mass Effect

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