cashback app


When my husband and I started our journey paying off $650,000 in student loan debt, we dove in looking for all of the best cashback apps we could find on our hunt to save money so we could pay off debt. We noticed that one of the easiest places to blow our budget was at the grocery store. We’d heard of cashback apps that people use for grocery shopping and other spending but thought they sounded too good to be true. I don’t want to spoil what is ahead in this post for you, but cashback apps are definitely not too good to be true! They are amazing and they help us save/earn money every single month. 

In addition to sharing what the best cashback apps are, it may help you to also understand what cashback apps really are, whether cashback apps really work, and how cashback apps work. If you aren’t really sure what cashback apps are, scroll down to the bottom of the post to learn more before you jump into which apps are best. 


best cashback apps

There are cashback apps out popping up all over the place out there so I thought I’d share the ones that I think are the very best and actually worth your time. 


Rakuten is one of the very best cashback apps of all time for a number of reasons. First, you can earn the most money simply for signing up when you make your first purchase– you get $10 cashback right away. With most other cashback apps you’ll earn $5 or less for signing up and making a first purchase. That’s $10 for doing almost nothing! 

Rakuten works by offering you cashback for making certain purchases online. It also provides you with promo codes when you do your online shopping, so that you don’t have to scour the internet for the best applicable promo codes. 

Another thing I love about Rakuten is that you can download the app and associated web browser extension and then when you are shopping online (whether on your phone or computer) Rakuten will pop up and ask you if you want to activate your cashback offers on their site. With a simple click of a button, you can earn cashback for the shopping you were already doing.

In addition, Rakuten will scour the internet for the best promo codes and deals available for whatever you are shopping for. In my own personal experience, Rakuten finds the best deals and helps you earn the most cashback and savings possible. Sign up for Rakuten to earn your $10 here.

After you’ve signed up and started using Rakuten, if you like it as much as me, you can refer your friends and family and earn $25 each time one of them signs up! 


Honey works similar to Rakuten. You can download the app and or grab their web browser extension. Honey will search the internet for related promo codes wherever you are shopping online so that you don’t have to waste time looking for promo codes/the best deal! In addition you can earn “gold” (rewards points) on your purchases which you can cash out for gift cards. It is SO easy to use. You usually cannot take advantage of a deal from Honey and Rakuten at the same time, so I always check both Rakuten and Honey to see who has the best deals on my purchases. Download Honey here to earn your first $5 with my referral link.


Ibotta is another one of the best cashback apps out there, but it works a little different than Rakuten. Before you head to the grocery store, you simply click through the app and virtually clip any coupons or rebates that are applicable to what you are shopping for. After you’ve done your shopping, you upload your receipt to earn your cashback. One thing I like about Ibotta is that they’ll PayPal you your cashback rather than offering gift cards.

Another thing I like about Ibotta is that you can also earn cashback on grocery pickup and delivery! You simply link your grocery pick up account directly in the Ibotta app. So for example, you would go into the Ibotta app, search for “Walmart grocery” in the search bar, and enter in your Walmart pick up credentials so that you can earn Ibotta credit on your Walmart order. (P.S. If you haven’t used Walmart pick up or delivery yet, you can get $10 for trying it out here). 

Ibotta makes it really easy when you download their web extension to see what applicable items are in your grocery cart and you can add their cashback rebate. You can also shop at discount websites (like Groupon) through the Ibotta app to earn cashback.  Sign up for a free Ibotta account here and you’ll earn an easy $5 when you make your first purchase! 


Fetch is another one of my favorite cashback apps because it is SO easy to use. In fact, it’s the easiest to use. Fetch allows you to scan your grocery store receipts to earn free rewards on your grocery shopping. All you do is download the app and scan in your receipts every time you go grocery shopping. Literally, that is all you do! You don’t have to worry about the hassle of searching for coupons or rebates, watching videos, or taking surveys– the app automatically applies the coupons/rebates for you which allows you to earn rewards points. You can redeem your points for gift cards to dozens of stores (Amazon etc). Using your own Fetch referral code, you can also refer friends and family to the app to earn even more rewards (2,000 points per referral). It’s seriously so easy to use it’s a no brainer. Speaking of which, use my code YUUG7 to earn 2,000 free points yourself when you download the app! 

Grocery Shopping Apps Honorable Mentions: SAVINGSTAR & CHECKOUT51 

SavingStar and Checkout51 work similar to Ibotta. You go through the app and click the rebates you want from the stores you will shop at. One thing I like about SavingStar is that you can build your whole shopping list within the app. It’s not my first choice because you can’t earn cashback on grocery pick up and delivery like you can for Ibotta. Same goes for Checkout51. Still, they are worth checking out. 


Dosh is one of my absolute favorite cashback apps. It’s an app that simply tracks your spending and lets you earn cash back automatically for purchases you make at certain stores and restaurants. 

What I love about Dosh is that it is 100% passive once you set it up. You simply download the app, sign up and enter your credit or debit card(s) and Dosh will automatically track your spending and add your cashback to your Dosh account. Once you reach their threshold, you can cash out your earnings. It’s been surprising how fast Dosh will add cashback to my account when I’m out making purchases! You don’t have to enable the cashback offers, simply do your regular shopping or eating out and it does all the work for you. It works kind of like how credit card rewards points work, and if you have a credit card with awesome rewards and also use Dosh, you’re double dipping on getting rewards which is awesome. {Related: How to Travel Hack Using Credit Cards]


Drop is an effortless cashback app, similar to Dosh, which is why it made my list for best cashback apps. All you do is link your credit card(s), pick a few favorite places where you dine and shop, and it automatically lets you earn rewards points on the spending you are already doing. The initial sign up is literally the only effort you have to put into the app which I love! Earn $5 for signing up for Drop here. If you want to earn even more with Drop, you can play online games, take surveys, and look through the app’s best deals (like Swagbucks, see below) all within the app. It’s super easy to use and get started earning points. 


Pei works similar to Drop and Dosh. Simply link your credit card(s), select some of your favorite stores, and earn cashback! Get $5 for signing up, linking your card, and making your qualifying purchase here and or use the code DEEPLYINDEBT


One of the best cashback apps that is not passive is Swagbucks. Swagbucks is an app and website where you can earn money taking surveys and performing other online tasks. When you join Swagbacks, you’ll be able to do simple things like watch ads online or take surveys to earn cashback or gift cards. My husband and I like to hop on Swagbucks in the evenings when we are unwinding and watching TV. It’s a really easy way to earn a little extra. 

Honorable Mention: Receipt Hog 

Receipt Hog is an app that pays you to upload your receipts — any receipts– for market research. In exchange, Receipt Hog will enter you into sweepstakes and offer rewards points based on where you are shopping and what you are purchasing. Receipt Hog doesn’t allow just anyone to sign up anymore, it will largely depend on where you live. But it’s worth a try. 


Shopkick is another app that lets you earn rewards (kicks) for shopping in person and online. For in person shopping, all you have to do to earn kicks is walk into their partner stores, scan products, or make purchases to earn kicks. For online shopping, all you have to do is visit their online partners, view select offers, or make online purchases to earn kicks. Once you earn enough kicks, you cash them in for gift cards. Pretty dang easy! Earn free points by signing up with my referral link here!


A cashback app is just that– an app that helps you earn cashback on the shopping you are already doing. They are a legitimate way of earning money, often similar to using coupons or promo codes. They offer cashback as an incentive to you to buy a product. There are many cashback apps that you can download. Each app has it’s own form of payment to you.  Many cashback apps offer gift cards once you reach a certain threshold. Some offer rewards points and let you exchange those points for cashback to your PayPal or other online account or let you exchange them for gift cards.


Wondering whether cashback apps really work? The short answer is yes, cashback apps really work!

Last year, I earned well over $2,000 using the cashback apps that I recommended earlier in this post. I didn’t have to pay to download the apps, there were no hidden fees, nothing like that. Everything I used (and that is presented here) is free.

When things are really easy we tend to think they are too good to be true, but in the case of cashback apps, they really are easy, they really work, and you can earn some nice and easy cash by using them. They are especially nice when you combine them with a rewards earning credit card so that you can double up on earnings for doing the shopping you were already doing! 


When I first started looking into using cashback apps I thought they sounded too good to be true. Why would a company give me cashback on a purchase for a product they do not own… for free? Sounded fishy. It turns out it’s not fishy at all! These apps and websites form partnerships with brands, stores, and other vendors. They receive payment from the brands, stores, and vendors for referring people to their products. When the apps and websites receive these payments, they share them with you (the customer) who bought the product. That’s it! 

Not all cashback apps are created equal. Some are certainly better than others. These are the best cashback apps out there that are actually worth your time. Start downloading these apps so you can save money now!

Looking for more ways to save money? Check out other frugal living articles here

Like these tips? Be sure to subscribe to our monthly newsletter  where you’ll gain access to all of our money saving hacks we’re using to pay off $650,000 of student loan debt. 

best cashback apps

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