To me, grocery shopping is a necessary evil. While I love to shop for shoes, clothes, and pretty much every accessory out there, grocery shopping is nothing but a chore. I like to eat as much as the next gal. It’s also important for my children to have healthy meal options. But going to the store and getting all these necessities while watching my hard earned money fade away into the abyss is nothing short of torture. The one saving grace is my use of coupons and grocery rebate apps.
When combined, I can save quite a bit on the everyday items I have to buy. I hear a lot about coupons and the astronomical amount of money you can save using them. I’m not one of those ladies who does her weekly shopping, gets a cart full of groceries for free, and then gets money back from the store, but I do save an average of $10-$20 per shopping trip by shopping the sales and using coupons each week.
Added to that savings is rebates. Unlike coupons, you have to pay for the items out of pocket and then redeem the rebate for cash back, but when combined with the use of coupons, this can be a huge savings. I usually earn between $3-$30 in rebates each shopping trip (once a week).
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There is a certain sense of accomplishment in knowing that I provided for my kids’ nutritional needs while still putting some moolah in my pocket. It’s almost like getting paid to shop. Now, that’s a shopping experience I can get behind.
Today I’ve compiled a list of the 5 best grocery rebate apps that I personally use. Each of these apps can be downloaded from whichever app store you prefer, and I want you to know that I’m not getting paid to talk about them. Although there are affiliate links, I’m not recommending anything I don’t use myself.
I have made the most amount of rebate money off this app during my grocery shopping trips, which is why I listed it first. With Ibotta, you simply click the store you want to get rebates through, “unlock” the rebates you want to claim (unlike some rebate apps, you don’t have to unlock the items before you shop), and then you verify your purchase of the items by taking a picture of the barcodes. Once you verified each item’s barcode, scan your receipt and you’re all done. They typically verify your purchases and credit your account within 2-3 days.
When you have accrued $20 in rebates, you can cash out and choose to receive your money via Paypal or gift card. I use Paypal because I don’t like being restricted to one store. One thing I really like about this app is that it offers rebates on staple items like milk, bread, eggs, cheese, and cereal. They are called “any brand” rebates because you don’t have to buy a specific brand to earn the rebate. They are typically only .25¢ each, but that’s still better than nothing.
There are also tons of bonuses that give you extra rebates. For example, I earned a .50¢ bonus for claiming two rebates on glade wax melts (.50¢ on one refill pack.)
Here are a couple of recent rebates I claimed through Ibotta and how I combined them with coupons. I clipped a coupon for $5 off 2 Tresemmé shampoo and/or conditioner. Ibotta had a rebate for $3 on each the shampoo and the condition, but only on the slightly more expensive bottles. The TRESemme Shampoo, 25 fl oz and TRESemme Conditioner were priced at $4.97 each at Walmart, making it $9.94 for both. I used my $5.00 coupon and paid $4.94 at checkout. Then I went home and scanned my receipt and the barcodes and received $6.00 in rebates through Ibotta. That earned me $1.00, and I got the shampoo and conditioner free. Sweet!
Also at Walmart, Ibotta had: a $4.75 rebate on Degree Women Dry Spray deodorant (cost $4.97), a $4.75 rebate on Degree Men Dry Spray deodorant (cost $4.97), a $5.25 rebate on Dove Dry Spray Antiperspirant (cost $5.47), a $5.25 rebate on Dove Men+Care Dry Spray Antiperspirant (cost $5.47), and a $5.25 rebate on AXE Dry Spray Deodorant for Men (cost $5.47). I had a $1.50 coupon on the Degree Women’s Dry Spray deodorant and a $2.00 coupon on the Degree Men’s Dry Spray deodorant that I’d clipped out of the Sunday paper. In total, all five deodorants cost $26.35. I paid $22.85 after using the coupons and then submitted the receipt to Ibotta when I got home for a total of $25.25 in rebates. That means I got all five deodorants for free and made $2.43. Cha-Ching!
Again, with rebates you have to pay for the items first and then get your money reimbursed, but in the instance of the deodorants, I made over the $20 threshold required to cash out in one shopping trip and was able to get my money via Paypal within a few days. If you’re interested in downloading this app, you can click this link https://ibotta.com/r/vydewdq. By using the link, you will receive a $10 bonus if you claim a rebate within 2 weeks of downloading the app. Also, using the referral link makes us teammates. There are different levels that earn bonuses and everyone on the team shares the bonuses.
This app works the same as Ibotta except the rebates aren’t divided up by stores. If you shop at any store that offers itemized receipts and meet the requirements of the rebate, all you have to do is scan the barcodes and your receipt to receive the rebate.
You can cash out once you have accrued $20. The money is sent via check, which is good for those who don’t use Paypal and don’t want to get your money via a gift card. The only thing I don’t like about this option is that the check is mailed to you—snail mail. I would rather have my money in my Paypal account a few days after making my purchases than wait a week or more for a check, but it’s still money in your pocket on items that were going to be bought anyway.
I haven’t saved as much money through Checkout 51 as I have through Ibotta, but I usually save anywhere from $1-$5 per shopping trip. They also offer bonuses for claiming multiple rebates, but they don’t have a referral program that I know of.
This app is basically like the previous two except you have to save the rebates BEFORE you shop. Like Ibotta, MobiSave offers rebates on staple items like fruit, dish soap, bread, and condiments, but they are only .10¢ rebates as opposed to Ibotta’s .25¢. If you know you’re going to pick up bananas on your shopping trip, it’s worth clicking the rebate to save it before you head to the store. When you get home, scan your receipt and unlike the other apps, MobiSave doesn’t have a threshold you have to reach to cash out. Once you scan your receipt and the items are verified, they send the money over to Paypal, no matter how much it is.
The only complaint I’ve heard about MobiSave is that if you don’t save your rebates first you don’t get the money for them. I usually make out my shopping list and just before I leave the house, scan through the app and save the items I think I might possibly get. It’s better to save them and not use them that to not save them and then not get the rebate.
This app is just a little bit different than the others previously listed. Although the main process is the pretty much the same: To claim a rebate, click their orange + and it unlocks the rebate and then you scan your receipt and barcodes once you’ve made your purchases. The primary difference is that they offer some “one or many” rebates. The way these work is you get a larger rebate (typically between $4-$10) for spending a specified amount of money on certain items. The items don’t have to be bought in one shopping trip. They can be bought in one or many trips. Hence the name.
For example, I’m working my way toward a $5 rebate after spending $15 on any International Delights Creamer. Since I buy a bottle of creamer every couple of weeks, it’s worth scanning my receipt, and once I’ve bought enough bottles to meet the requirement, I’ll get a rebate.
The threshold is only $5 to cash out and the money is sent via Paypal.
This app is from Coupons.com and I love it. Most of the printable coupons that Coupons.com offers on the Coupons.com app. That means if the store won’t accept your printed coupon or if you’re feeling particularly lazy that day and don’t want to print coupons (not that I ever have one of those days *wink*) you can just upload your receipt after your shopping trip and get the money added to your paypal account within 48 hours—No sweat.
I hope these rebate apps save you a ton of money. Let me know if there’s an app you use that isn’t on the list. I’m always game for saving money.