The 8 Best Rewards Apps to Earn Free Fun Money

The 8 Best Rewards Apps to Earn Free Fun Money

Ever since I was young, I’ve always had to have the absolute best of everything. For me, the best doesn’t always mean the most or biggest thing. Instead, it’s something that makes me feel great. Lately, I’ve been obsessed with finding the best food trucks in my area. I fell in love with food trucks a few years ago when they started to pop up where I live, and now I’ve made it a mission to try them all in search of the very best!.

While I’m not quite ready to share the list of the best food trucks in my area, I can share with you a list of other best things that have made my food truck missions possible. Eating at so many food trucks obviously costs money and so today I want to talk about the eight best rewards apps that help me earn free fun money. The type of money that I can spend on every last food truck in town without guilt. While similar, many of these apps involve different tasks to earn money, so I’ve done my best to leave none of my favorites off the list.

8 Best Rewards Apps to Earn Money…for Free!

The Starbucks App

As a busy person, a coffee-lover, and someone who just has to find all of the absolute best bargains that are out there, I love the Starbucks app. There are two major benefits to using the Starbucks app. First, you can use it to do things like order ahead and skip the line, which for me is often a must. I just don’t know how many times I’ve been in a big rush, needed a quick pick-me-up, and the Starbucks app helped me grab a quick flat white while I’m out on the move. 

The other major benefit of the Starbucks app is that there are rewards built right in. What that means is that every time you swing by Starbucks for a quick coffee, you earn stars (or rewards points). You can later trade those stars in for free drinks or food. A lot of stores have this type of branded app that’s aimed at incentivizing your loyalty.

Type of App:

Branded for store loyalty.

Is it the Best?:

For coffee? Of course!


Instacart can be an absolutely life-changing app. I know for someone as busy as me, it’s definitely one of the all-time best time-saving apps. It essentially makes it so you can have someone shop for your personal grocery list, sometimes in as fast as an hour. I don’t know about you, but that saves me from so many potential headaches.

Did you know, however, that you can also earn money with Instacart too? The way you do that is by being the person shopping for others. It’s really a game-changer for your budget if you ever find yourself in a pinch or if you just want to pad your budget a bit, too. Instacart is a great way to get extra money to use to do even more shopping or to visit food trucks like me. 

Type of App:

One that pays you to shop.

Is it the Best?:

Sure. If you’re looking for a flexible, part-time shopping gig.

Checkout 51

Checkout51 is another cool app. The way this one works is that each week, it gives you a new set of deals from which to choose. You can then go make purchases that qualify for those deals, keep your receipt, and take a picture of it in order to collect your cash back.

I don’t think this is the all-time best rewards app, mostly because it is so heavily dependent on whether that week’s deals are good for you or not. Is it the best some weeks? Maybe. It really just depends. I will say, though, that one thing I really like about this app is how fun it is to check out the new set of deals each week and see what you’re interested in buying.

Type of App:

Rewards app for shoppers.

Is it the Best?:

It’s pretty good, but some weeks are better than others because of the way it works.


When it comes to picking the best rewards app to earn free fun money, my favorite is Shopkick. There’s so much to love about Shopkick, but one of the things that makes it the best is that you can combine it with almost all of the other ways to earn free fun money that we talk about on this list. You can use it with your Starbucks app, while you shop for Instacart, or even in tandem with Checkout 51. There’s just so much versatility to this app.

Shopkick basically turns going shopping into a scavenger hunt. You hunt down a featured product to get your kicks, which are points that you can later turn into free gift cards. I use it almost every time I go out to the store, and for me, that’s about as good as it gets.

Type of App:

Rewards app.

Is it the Best?:

Yes, Shopkick is my absolute favorite of all of the shopping rewards apps online. I highly recommend it!


You might know Rakuten as Ebates, which recently changed its name. The way this one works is that users head over to, sign up, shop online through the site, and receive cash back on certain purchases.

It’s a pretty great setup, and you can almost always find tons of excellent things to buy through Rakuten’s website. What makes it even better is that Rakuten also offers other ways to save such as daily deals, coupons, and promo codes. Like many of the other selections on this list, you can also combine it somewhat seamlessly with other apps, really enhancing the amount of free fun money that you can earn.

Type of App:

An online shopping app.

Is it the Best?:

Sure! If you prefer to shop only online.

Google Opinion Rewards

Google Opinion Rewards is a rewards app that lets you earn free fun money by answering quick surveys. That’s exactly what it sounds like. You get a survey, you answer it, and you get rewards, which in this case come in the form of Google Play credit. I’m sure that I don’t have to tell you that there are plenty of great ways to spend that.

This one isn’t, in my opinion, the all-time best of the rewards apps, but it’s kind of fun to give your opinion about all the different things it asks about. I know some of my girlfriends absolutely love giving their takes on a bunch of different things. It’s also something you can quickly do each day when you have a few minutes of downtime, which for someone with my schedule is an incredibly valuable thing.

Type of App:

Survey app.

Is it the Best?:

If you love to give tons and tons of opinions about things, sure.


I don’t know about you, but I just love taking photos. You know what I love even more than taking photos? Getting paid to take photos in free fun money. That’s where the app Foap comes into play.

The way Foap works is that you post pictures on it from your mobile phone. Other users can then buy your photos on the app for $10. Each time that they do, you get half of the money, which is eventually paid out to you at the end of the month via PayPal. The best part, if you ask me, is that you can sell the same photo over and over and over again, which means if you take one that people really like, there is no end in sight for your free fun money on this one.

Type of App:

An app to sell photos.

Is it the Best?:

It all depends on how strong a photographer you are.


Out of all the apps on this list, I think Slidejoy is the one where you have to do the least. See, all that Slidejoy really entails is letting the app modify the lock screen on your smartphone. It just replaces whatever you have on there now with things like trending topics, ads, and other content. Each time you click to look at it or even just to open your phone, you get points.

This is great for some really obvious reasons, namely that you can tally points by just opening your phone and occasionally engaging with the content that Slidejoy puts on there. Like some of the other apps on our list here today, this is one that you can use to fill your downtown, whether you’re waiting for a friend to arrive, killing some time, or whatever else. It’s that easy to use. In fact, sometimes I forget that I’m even using it at all.

Type of App:

Lock screen ads app.

Is it the Best?:

It’s a great one for making free fun money without really doing anything.

So there you have it: the eight best rewards apps to earn free fun money. Though, as I mentioned earlier, the best, in my opinion, is Shopkick, which you can combine with almost all of the other apps on this list. It makes going to the store fun, and, best of all, using Shopkick just gives you so many chances to earn gift cards that are just as good as cash…for free!

It’s time to get your kicks! Of the many rewards apps out there, Shopkick’s versatility, fun setup, and other qualities make it the absolute best rewards app. Download the app today so you too can earn fun money for free!



Shopkick is the fun and easy way to earn free gift cards for the shopping you already do. Download the app now!


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Dima Volovik

EVP of Product and Engineering

Dima Volovik is the EVP of Product and Engineering at Trax Retail — Shopkick.

Dima Volovik is the accomplished product and engineering leader who led teams to deliver innovative and commercially successful e-commerce products, marketplaces, and enterprise solutions for Amazon, Comcast, Fandango, and Universal Music. Before joining Trax, Dima was the Director at Amazon, where he led product development and Engineering for Amazon Appstore and Amazon Prime Video, CTO at Fandango, and Paciolan, head of technology at Golf Channel/Golf Now, and Global VP of Direct to Consumer Technology at Universal Music Group. Dima’s expertise includes developing consumer products, marketplaces, and enterprise solutions.

Dima grew up in Baku, Azerbaijan, where he received his MS in Electrical Engineering from Azerbaijan Oil Academy, and he currently resides in Los Angeles, California, with his family.