The most legit cashback apps for shopaholics on a tight budget

I used to hear people talk about a tight budget all the time, but, to be honest, I didn’t really realize what being on a tight budget meant until I became a full-time college student. Between my classes, my internship, and trying to have some sort of social life, I just don’t have much time to get a real job that can support my love of shopping. Luckily, I’ve found a solution…or three. They’re called cashback apps, and they’re fantastic.

Cashback apps are exactly what they sound like—apps that you can use to get cashback. I don’t know about you, but I love this idea. So, I’ve been trying out as many of them as I can, and I’m proud to say that I’ve nailed down a list of some of the most legit cashback apps for shopaholics on a tight budget, whether they’re in college or not. And today it’s my pleasure to share them with all of you!

3 Legit Cashback Apps

Check out this list below. I’ve got three very different types of apps that do different things, but I hope you’ll find them all to be as totally legit as I do.

1. SurveyJunkie

Okay, so this first one on my list of legit cashback apps is actually one that you can use during downtime while you’re shopping. It’s called SurveyJunkie, and you can use it from your smartphone to take surveys that give you cashback. My friends and I like to use SurveyJunkie while we’re waiting in line, taking a break somewhere and grabbing a coffee, or anywhere else we have a few free moments between classes.

One thing to keep in mind is that you have to be at least 18 years old to use it. How much cash you get back from this app really depends on how much you use it. There are some days I’m really busy with classes and whatever else, and I only end up getting $5 from it, but there are other days when I have plenty of time to use it to shop. During those weeks, I’m able to get as much as $50 cash back just for taking surveys. It’s great, and it’s so nice to have that extra money. I highly recommend it, even if you only use it while you’re standing in line to check out!

2. PayPal

This sounds funny, but the most important cashback app is the one that literally gives you cash back. I’m talking about PayPal, which is the site you can use to move cash around online, get gifts from your relatives (always the best), and do whatever other financial business you have on the internet. There is one thing to note: In order to receive cash back, shoppers must use the PayPal Cashback Mastercard which offers 2% back on everyday purchases as opposed to other apps that give you free gift cards.

An added bonus with this one is that my parents are totally cool with it too, because it’s known for being secure. I can already tell this is going to be an invaluable app for me, especially when it comes to shopping online. Plus, most of my favorite online stores accept PayPal. So, if you don’t have a PayPal account, I highly recommend creating one, because it’s one of the easiest ways to get cashback. 

3. Shopkick

try this cashback app legitDon’t get me wrong, the last two legit cashback apps I discussed are great, but this one is my absolute favorite. It’s called Shopkick, and I use it any time I do any shopping, which, if I’m being honest, is a lot. Shopkick is great because you can use it for both your online and in-person shopping to get cashback or free gift cards.

Shopkick is pretty simple and actually a lot of fun. This legit cashback app basically turns every trip to the store into a fun scavenger hunt for points called “kicks.” You can get your kicks in all kinds of ways, but the ones I like the best are walking into stores, scanning certain items, and, of course, making purchases. You can then trade your kicks in for gift cards to your favorite stores, which given how much I like to shop, is just as good as cash. In addition, with Shopkick you can also earn money shopping online, get kicks for making purchases, or even just for watching videos. It’s great, and, after Instagram, it’s probably the app that my friends and I have been using the most lately. I can’t recommend it enough!

On a Tight Budget? Try Shopkick

It can be hard to find the most legit cashback apps. Some apps don’t have as many great benefits as others, while some apps might not suit your personal tastes. Take it from me, a certified self-declared shopaholic, these are three of the best out there, and I’ve been using them all quite a bit lately. 

Take it from me, a certified self-declared shopaholic, these are three of the best out there!

As I said above, though, Shopkick is easily my favorite cashback app. I love it, and not just because I can use it at so many awesome stores, but also because it turns all of my shopping trips into fun scavenger hunts for kicks. I also love that on the days when I don’t feel like going out—or when classes are too hectic—I can still get my kicks by shopping online. Basically, it makes being a shopaholic even more fun than it already is!

It’s time to get your kicks! Shopkick is one of the most legit cashback apps, and it just makes shopping such a rewarding experience. Download the app today and start getting your kicks ASAP! 

Image courtesy of Dean Drobot

The best ways to earn cash back for shopping with friends

My best friend Ella and I have known each other for a very long time. We’ve conquered middle school together, high school, and now we’re so happy to be college students. Of the many things we do together, one of our favorites is shopping—we’re most definitely shopaholics. Ella always snags the best finds but I’m always on the hunt for the best bargains and deals. One day we were out shopping at Ulta and I asked her if she had any rewards to redeem for cash back and she had no idea that was even a thing!  

I’m not going to lie, it felt good to be the one helping Ella discover something new for a change. We spent the weekend chatting and I told her everything I knew about how shopping rewards programs help me stretch my money now that my budget is pretty tight in college. Together, we came up with three easy ways to earn cash back shopping with friends—and now we want to share with you, too!

Use Store-Specific Apps to Earn Cash Back When Shopping

The first idea for how to earn cash back shopping with friends that Ella and I came up with was to start using those apps that are specific to certain stores. Some of our favorite places to both shop and hang out—like Starbucks, Target, and Ulta—have their own apps. The point is to reward loyal shoppers there, and we’re happy to accept. If you have a different favorite shopping mecca, look them up on the app store. Chances are, they’re as tech-savvy as we are.

I just realized that coffee can taste as good as it smells (thank you, white chocolate mochas), so I’ve been using my Starbucks app a lot lately. Starbucks rewards you with special free items when you’re a frequent visitor, which my friends and I are—especially when we’re fueling up for a shopping spree or study session. 

My forever favorite, though, is the Target app. Target gives you special notifications about deals and sales so you never miss out on stocking up on lip gloss and other essentials at killer prices. And, if you like to sometimes just hang out and browse around at Target like we do, you can even use it to find out what’s in stock and what’s not. 

Some of our other favorite store apps include: 

  • Fandango
  • Sephora 
  • Marshalls
  • T.J. Maxx

Become an Instacart Shopper to Earn Cash

Expenses as a college student seem to rack up, especially when you have to buy actual textbooks. One way we’ve found to earn some extra cash for school expenses is by working part-time for Instacart. Basically, Instacart is a job where you get paid to go shopping for other people. This is what we’ve started to call the other Insta (the first one being Instagram, obviously), and Ella and I have already found plenty of ways to love it.

Here are some reasons we are Instacart-ing super hard lately:

  • Flexibility: The best part about Instacart is that it’s flexible, so we can go after classes, on weekends, or whenever else we feel like it, really. 
  • Cash: Plus, this is literally someone else paying you to go shopping. They tell you where to go and what to buy, and you get paid for it—sometimes as much as $20 an hour.
  • Time with Friends: And since it’s so flexible, you can easily make plans to do this together, which for obvious reasons is just so much more fun than doing it on your own—although that’s always an option, too.

How Shopkick Helps You Earn Cash Back Shopping with Friends

earn cash back shopping with friendsThe last (and, tbh, the best) way to earn cash back shopping with friends is through this app called Shopkick. There’s a lot to love about Shopkick, but, personally, I think the best part is that you can combine it with all the other ways to shop that we talked about above—especially the Starbucks and Target store apps. See, Shopkick turns going shopping into a scavenger hunt: you hunt down featured products to get your kicks (kicks are points that you can later turn into free gifts cards or cash back).

Ella and I absolutely love Shopkick, and there are endless ways to earn kicks, like shopping for leggings at Fabletics, checking out the newest makeup at Ulta, or even getting tickets to the movies early with Fandango through Shopkick’s mobile shopping option. We’ve been using it pretty much whenever we buy anything, whether it’s while we’re hunting for deals at the mall, working part-time for Instacart, or even just to earn money shopping online while hanging out in each other’s dorms. 

Shopkick turns going shopping into a scavenger hunt: you hunt down featured products to get your kicks.

So yeah, those are the best ways to earn cash back for shopping with your friends that I’ve found so far. Shopkick is probably our favorite because you can combine it with the other two. They’re all good, though, and it’s crazy to think that we ever went shopping before without earning points and rewards for it.

I hope this helps you up your own shopping game. Oh, and if I can give you one last piece of advice, it would be to combine Shopkick with your own Instagram stories. You don’t have to be as good at it as my best friend Ella (really, no one is), but you can have a lot of fun showing everyone that you know how you get your kicks. I know I do!

It’s time to get your kicks by earning cash back for shopping with friends! Shopkick makes shopping a rewarding experience in so many cool ways. Download the app today and head out on your own shopping scavenger hunt to start earning kicks instantly!

Image courtesy monstArr on BigStock