Smart Shopper: Apps that pay you to shop

It's something that almost sounds too good to be true. There are apps that help you get cash back on everyday grocery items to travel. The only thing you need is a smart phone or tablet along with a little bit of time. I can't think of a better way to save up for something like Christmas or just a savings in general.

One big word of advice on getting the most bang for  your buck is to have more than one app on your phone. You will find that the same receipt can be used on multiple apps! Does this sound like too much work? It's a great chore for your kids to help out with and in the end they could get rewarded with some of the savings. It's really  not that bad once you get the hang of it. Free money. Who doesn't like free money?

Ibotta : This is an app that my husband absolutely loves and many others, too. Before you head to your specific store, browse the app to see what kind of offers are being featured. For instance, Ibotta will often have a $5 cash back on a certain vodka. On top of that, Meijer could also have a $2 mperks. That means, we get our $2 off at the register, go home and take a picture of our receipt, scan the bar code on the bottle and in the end, our $12 vodka will only be $5! It's that easy! It's crucial that you scan your receipts in order for Ibotta to see that you indeed bought an item. In just a short time, they will put money in your Ibotta account. After you have accrued $20, you can have it transferred to your Paypal or other gift cards. On Sunday, we were at Buffalo Wild Wings. My husband just happened to check to see if they worked with Ibotta. Indeed they do! Their offer? We could use some of our Ibotta savings toward a $25 BW3's gift card and get $5 back. So, we got a $25 gift card, for $20 and were able to use it that day. Click here to get started. Here is a tutorial from their Facebook page and there are plenty of others on YouTube, as well. A big shout out to YouTubers like The Melea Show and Krazy Koupon Lady.


Checkout51 : "Buy groceries, earn cash back." Their motto says it all. The list of items offering rebates is updated every Thursday morning. It's kind of like a bargain hunter's Christmas waking to see what kind of cash back you could get each week. So pick the items  you are going to purchase at any store. When you are done shopping, just like Ibotta, take a picture of the receipt.  You then have to go through the list and check off the items, giving the system a heads up on the purchase. After it's verified, the allotted cash back will go into a Checkout51 savings. Once it hits $20, you can request a check.


Flipp : Out of all three of these apps, THIS ONE is my favorite! It's more about the convenience of being able to compare the prices of stores around you without having to go to each individual website to find the "Weekly Ad".  And if you love the idea of coupons but hate cutting them out and physically carrying them with you, they are all right there in the app. If you have a loyalty card, you can even connect it to this app and the coupons will go right to that specific store's card. You can customize Flipp to only compare ads at stores near where you are currently shopping or located, too.  I only have one warning: this app is addicting! You can even create a shopping list and Flipp will go ahead and show you where the best deals are based on  your list.


honey : This one is great for those of you who love to shop online. When you sign up for honey, you'll notice a little "h" in the corner of your computer if you're on a site they support. By clicking that at checkout, honey will automatically search to see if there are any coupon codes that apply to your transaction. I advise clicking here for a wonderful explanation.


Target Cartwheel : Ahhhh! Hard to find a caretaker of little ones that doesn't love Target. So, why not save right on your phone with their Cartwheel app? You  sign up, view the categories, see the discounts and click the add button. Once you get to check out, pull up the bar code in your app, scan it with the cashier and voila! Savings right there on the spot you weren't otherwise getting.

Do you have fun ways that you like to save or earn rewards? Share those and other ideas by emailing



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