Eight ways to boost your cashback, from groceries to vacations
FROM shopping in the supermarket to booking summer vacations, you can earn money on almost anything.
Cashback websites, apps and cards can earn you hundreds or even thousands of pounds. TopCashback, for example, estimates that its average user earns £345 a year.
Laura Whateley reveals how to get the most out of every diet out there. . . to boost your earnings.
CLICK TO WIN
FREE cashback websites like Quidco and TopCashback are the first place to start.
Just log in and check if the store you plan to buy from offers cashback. Then click on the link to the cashback website and fill your basket as usual. Stores pay a percentage which can be between 1-40% of what you spend or a fixed amount. For example, TopCashback offers £36 if you get car insurance quotes from GoCompare and then buy a policy.
It normally takes a few weeks for the cashback to be paid into your digital wallet on the sites. You can then transfer the money to your bank or PayPal account. Or you can convert your winnings into vouchers for a range of stores, for a slightly higher amount. Another site, Kidstart, lets you top up your kids’ savings by earning cashback when you shop with over 2,500 brands.
Only use cashback sites when buying items you would buy anyway. If one store offers a good refund rate but another offers the item you want at a lower price, go with the latter.
MAKE cashback pay more by layering if possible. Use a cashback website, then pay with a cashback credit card and use loyalty cards like Nectar or Boots Advantage to collect points as usual.
BOOST your earnings by referring friends. . . and they’ll thank you once their own cashback starts rolling in.
KidStart and Airtime Rewards pay up to £5 for a referral, while TopCashback pays up to £30.
Other companies you could use, such as BT and Virgin Media, offer £50 gift cards.
PAY NOW, BUY LATER WITH GIFT CARDS
YOU can get extra-generous cashback rates if you buy gift cards or credits for places you know you’ll be shopping.
This tip is great if you’re sure to go shopping at Asda, for example, or if you’re about to buy a new washing machine at Currys.
The JamDoughnut app lets you buy credit from over 100 well-known brands and earn cashback in the form of points.
A point is worth 1 pence and you can withdraw your payment once you have accumulated £10.
In the TopGiftCards section of TopCashback you can buy cards for many shops and restaurants. Only do this if you plan to buy something specific in the near future. Otherwise, you risk not using your card before its expiry date. Also, if the company goes bankrupt, it could be worthless.
Currently, the app pays six percent cashback when you buy credit from TK Maxx, to spend in-store or online. So buy £20 and you will get 120 points worth £1.20.
RECEIVED = GOOD
EARN cashback on your weekly shop by swiping your receipt with apps like HuYu and Shoppix.
They sell the information to companies that want to understand customer buying habits.
Huyu gives you points worth 5p when you scan a paper receipt from one of the big supermarkets, or 10p if you forward a receipt via email. You get a £5 voucher for every 500 points you earn, which you can spend at lots of places including Amazon, Argos, Asda and more.
With Shoppix, you earn tokens for every receipt you take from any store, except travel agencies. When you have 3,200 tokens in your online account, you can withdraw £5 via PayPal or grab a voucher for Amazon or iTunes.
Take up to 30 receipts per week and you’ll usually get 30 tokens for each.
PAY A PHONE BILL WITH PASTIES
WANT to get paid to eat sausage rolls? The Airtime Rewards app lets you link debit cards, including via Apple Pay, to its site.
You get money off your phone bill every time you go to Greggs, Boots, Tesco, Argos and more.
Typically you get £1 back per purchase and the app says users tend to do this three or four times a month. Once you’ve earned £10, you can use it towards your next phone bill from O2, Three, EE, Giffgaff or Vodafone, if you pay monthly – or get a pay-as-you-go voucher.
Do you have an account in Monzo or Starling digital banks? Sign up for Flux to earn money when you shop in many places, including ordering food from Just Eat and KFC.
BANK A BONUS
MANY banks will pay you cash back for transferring your account to them and paying a certain amount. HSBC offers £170 on its Advance account, First Direct pays £150 on its 1st account, Lloyds Club account pays £125 and Nationwide’s FlexDirect pays up to £125.
You can also earn money on bills you pay by direct debit with Santander’s 123 Lite account, but it has a fee of £2 per month. It pays 3% on water bills, 2% on energy and 1% on council tax, cell phone, broadband, TV and any Santander mortgage.
Cashback is capped at £5 per month for each tier, so the maximum you could earn is £15 and your bills would have to be extremely high to get it.
Digital bank Chase is offering 1% cash back on debit card purchases for the first year, but there’s currently a five-week wait to open an account.
BE SMART CARD
CASHBACK credit cards let you earn every time you shop, but you’ll need a good credit score to qualify. Pay off your balance in full each month, otherwise the interest cancels the benefits.
The best of the bunch is the American Express Platinum Cashback Everyday Card, which pays 5% on your spending for the first three months, up to a maximum of £100 cashback. After that, it pays 0.5% on spending up to £10,000 per year and you’ll need to spend a minimum of £3,000 per year to earn anything. It pays one per cent on any expenditure over £10,000 per year.
Amex typically runs several ‘Shop Small’ promotions each year where cardholders typically earn £5 off a £15 spend at select local stores during a specified period – the next is June 13-26. Before applying for a credit card, use an eligibility checker such as the one at MoneySavingExpert.com to see if you’re likely to be accepted.
“STEAK BAKES AND GIFT CARDS ARE PAYABLE”
Joseph Seager, 36, CASHBACK king and Thrifty Chap blogger, has earned over £4,000 in the last ten years via Quidco, TopCashback, Shopmium and other apps.
Leyland father-of-three Lancs used Airtime Rewards for a year and won £30 which covered three months of his EE mobile contract.
He says, “Yes, you can really help pay your phone bill by eating a cooked steak!”
Joseph also earns cashback by buying Asda gift cards on the JamDoughnut app before doing his weekly shop, racking up £200 in a year.
He adds, “I’m not usually a big fan of gift cards because of the risk (if a store goes bankrupt), but if you use them right away they can be great.”
At the supermarket, he uses the Shopmium and CheckoutSmart apps to get cash back on individual products such as ice cream or wine – and sometimes gifts too.
‘DOLLARS FOR HOLIDAYS GIVE AN EXTRA INCREASE’
SINCE signing up for TopCashback in June 2021, savvy shopper Sandy Drew has earned a handy £1,300.
Now Cockfield’s 54-year-old operations manager, Co Durham, says she’s hooked.
Sandy has used it for everything from servicing his car at KwikFit to ordering pizza at Domino’s and booking flights on Opodo.
She also bought Christmas presents for her husband. Sandy says, “I often go to a mall to see what I want to buy and then come home to find out where I can get the best cashback.
“I’m also saving for a cruise to Orlando in September.
“I will use the money in my TopCashback wallet to buy travel dollars from Post Office Money, with an additional cashback bonus on top.”
We pay for your stories!
Do you have a story for the Sun press office?