Here’s a post that’s out of my ordinary topic. However, saving money and saving time is definitely a MostlySensible part of my life. Who doesn’t like saving money? So I’d like to pass on a little of what I’ve found helpful to me.
I hate wasting time. I especially don’t appreciate participating in something that was supposed to be a benefit to me but isn’t in the end. Frankly, I don’t like getting “rewards” as much as getting cash back. I don’t want more stuff, I just want the best bang for my buck. So if I can earn points that translate into actual dollars, then that’s my goal.
Some apps are solely a clearing house for coupons. For the most part, I avoid those because I have to buy name brand items, and then even with the coupon, it’s still more expensive than getting generic. However, there are a couple of places that I do “clip” coupons for specific items. My favorites are listed below.
My very favorite apps are the ones in which I simply scan my receipts and receive points which can be redeemed for cash or gift cards. These are companies that are looking for your data regarding shopping habits and brands you like for their market research. There’s no pressure to buy a certain brand, simply scan or take pictures of your receipts and you begin racking up rewards. I’ve just made it a habit to enter my receipts into my apps after every purchase. I love it.
So for what it’s worth, here are some coupon apps I actually use. Leave a comment below and tell me what apps you like the best!
Receipt Scanning Apps:
1. Receipt Hog
This is one of the first receipt apps I tried, and it is a great one. You simply take a picture of your receipts for groceries and retail stores. Then you get a certain number of points based on how much you spend. These points can be redeemed as Amazon credit or PayPal credit. To me, that’s basically money in the bank. If you upload every eligible receipt you could earn $80-$90 a year which isn’t nothing. With the points I earned this year, we purchased a Keurig on Amazon. Woo hoo!
This is a similar app to Receipt Hog. Simply scan in your receipts and earn points. This app also will scan your email looking for online purchases you’ve made (with your permission). Or you can forward your email receipts to the app to earn points. So Amazon purchases count! Points may be redeemed for a variety of gift cards. I’ve been using Receipt Pal for a few months now, and I’ve earned enough points to redeem them for a $25 Amazon gift card. My next set of points will be for a Lowe’s gift card.
You probably have already figured this one out. Walmart’s app has a Savings Catcher that searches for lower prices in your area for items you buy, and then it gives you the cash back if there’s a difference. You simply open the app, scan the bar code and wait for the notification if there’s a lower price. If there is, then you get that amount loaded onto a Walmart gift card. I use this and earn about $50 a year. I know it doesn’t seem like much, but it has been a nice thing to have when finances are a bit tight. ( Walmart.com)
For some of you, there may be a particular store you shop quite often. In that case it is definitely worth it to get whatever frequent customer program they offer. I’m a quilter and crafter, and JoAnn fabrics is my go-to place for good deals on basic supplies. The JoAnn app is SO much easier to use than bringing in the monthly mailer coupons. It’s always updated, and I just check out my app in my car before going in to the store to see what deals are available. They also have a text list that will send you special offers via texting. There’s always something discounted, but I like to wait until the 60% off or even 80% off coupons come around.
5. Amazon’s Subscribe N Save (and its coupons)
I shop Amazon every month like it’s a brick and mortar store. I look for deals and coupons and put in my orders. I especially use Subscribe N Save. Check out the link above for all the details. Basically if you “subscribe” to at least 5 items every month, then you get an extra 15% off. (And it doesn’t have to be the same 5 things each month.) For me that means ordering things I normally will buy, like toilet paper, spices, batteries, Mac N Cheese, canned tuna, cleaning supplies, etc. Not only that, but there are good coupons every now and then that apply to subscribed items for even more savings. But keep an eye out each month whether prices have changed since the previous month, just like you would do in a regular store. And of course, the big plus it that your purchases come to your door. I love that!
I’ve used ShopKicks to find coupons for all the stores I normally shop. Having to go to a store off my beaten path is not true savings to me. But if there happens to be coupons available at a store I normally frequent, then that’s a bonus. Shopkicks works through market analysis just like the receipt scanning apps above, but this one has you scanning items and walking in stores to earn “kicks” which you can redeem for rewards. Then if you actually buy an item, you get even more kicks. Kind of like a scavenger hunt. I get kicks now every time I walk into Walmart and open this app. Same for our local Kroger store and Costco.
If I had to leave one app off my list, it would be this one because it only gives me kicks on brand name items. BUT I go with it because the items are ones I do generally use, so why not?
I’m loving this app! I’ve used it for just 1 month and have received $6.50 into my PayPal account just for “clipping” coupons for the stores I normally shop and buying items I normally buy. Coupons.com also scans your emails to see if any Amazon purchases are eligible for discounts. You can get extra savings on all sorts of purchases from our local Kroger store, Walmart, Costco, Sam’s Club, Safeway, etc. as well as online outlets like Groupon, eBay, and others. And you can use this site even without the app. Sign up for free on their website. Then just clip your coupons online and print them out to redeem them in store.
The thing is this: I like coupons.com because it connects me to those stores and online coupon outlets instead of my having to browse each store’s special deals. It’s all in one place, and that saves me time.
My absolute favorite thing about this app is that it will also give you cash back on produce or dairy regardless of the brand, which is great! I got money back for my bananas, apples, and eggs and bread the other day. Sweet!
So I’m for saving pennies. To me, this is just a few minutes at a time to get paid back for purchases I would normally make anyway. That’s seems MostlySensible to me!
Disclaimer: This page contains affiliate links, which means that I get a little commission if you become a customer.