Side Hustles

Cash Earning Apps – The 11 Best Apps

If you’re looking to make some quick cash, then chances are you’ve already heard about popular apps like Swagbucks and Inbox Dollars.  While there’s nothing wrong with those apps, sometimes taking dozens of surveys just isn’t for everyone.  Beyond that, that are thousands of other apps that are also willing to pay you for doing completely random activities (or in some cases, nothing at all!)

If that’s more of what you’re looking for, there here are our top recommendations for the best cash earning apps you can download right now.

Apps for making money

Best Cashback Apps For When You’re Shopping

1- Rakuten

Rakuten is an app you’ve probably seen advertised on TV.  Formerly known as Ebates, they’re a huge commerce network headquartered in Japan that promotes over 2,500 different retailers.

What Rakuten does is pay you every time you shop through their service.  Anytime you’re thinking of buying anything, no matter how big or small, simply click through their app first and you’ll be paid a few bucks on the purchase you make.

In addition, Rakuten also sweeps the internet regularly for the latest coupons and deals.  So on top of the cashback, you might also get an awesome promo code for 25 percent off, free shipping, etc.

From experience, I can tell you that anytime you’re about to book travel, purchase cellular service, or do your taxes, you’re going to want to use this app.

If you join Rakuten now, they’re offering a $10 cash bonus after your first purchase.

2- Dosh

Similar to Rakuten, Dosh is an app that pays you every time you shop at well-known places.  However, rather than using their app to shop, the process is a bit more automatic.  

You simply link your credit or debit card to the Dosh app, and every time you use it to purchase at a participating retailer, you’ll earn cashback.  That means if you’re already using a credit card that pays you cashback or travel rewards every time you make a purchase, you’re effectively double-dipping by also using the Dosh app.

Most earnings are roughly 2 to 3%, but sometimes Dosh will pay up to 10% for certain partner retailers.  Your cash-back rewards can go straight to your bank account, Paypal, or be donated to charity.

3- Ibotta

Ibotta is another app that pays you every time you shop at stores online that you know and love.  However, it can also be used at physical stores too when you use their mobile pay service or by submitting a photo of the receipt afterward.  Either way, you’ll earn cashback with each purchase you make. If this type of app interests you, you can also take a look at other apps like Ibotta.

Sign up now with Ibotta and you’ll get a $20 welcome reward.

Best Micro-Saving / Investing Apps

close up of woman hands with smartphone and money

4- Acorns

Acorns is a service that takes the phrase “keep the change” literally.  Though they don’t exactly pay you, they’ve created a process that will make you feel like you’re being paid all the same.

The idea is simple: Every time you make a purchase, the app rounds up your purchase to the nearest dollar and stashes the difference in your Acorns account.  You have the option to cash out your account, invest it for growth, or save it for retirement.

Plans start at $1 per month.  If you go with the more expensive $3 per month plan, you can also use your Acorns account like a checking account.  Plus they give you extra money to use towards your investment account.

5- Stash

Stash is another app similar to Acorns where it rounds your purchases up to the nearest dollar and saves the difference.  However, they really deliver when it comes to the investing aspect.

With Stash, you can automatically invest your savings into a wide variety of different stocks and ETFs (exchange-traded funds).  And unlike traditional investing, you can buy fractional shares meaning contributions as little as $1 can still be invested.

Plans start at $1 per month.  They’ve also got a deal going where you’ll receive $50 to invest after you set up your first direct deposit.

Best Getting Paid To Exercise Apps

Best Getting Paid to Exercise Apps

6- Sweatcoin

How would you like to get paid for doing something as simple as walking?

Sweatcoin is an app that does just that!  Simply download it to your phone and start walking around.  For every 1,000 steps you take, you’ll be paid in Sweatcoins.  Though they can’t be redeemed for cash, you can use them to pay for goods and services with their partners such as clothing, electronics, etc.

7- HealthyWage

Are you and your colleagues thinking about challenging each other to a weight loss competition?  If so, then you can tie a prize to it by using the app HealthyWage.  

HealthyWage lets you set weight loss goals and then pays you if you achieve them.  Each participant in the challenge pays an entry fee and anyone who loses more than 6% wins a share of the prize.

Best Passive Income Apps

Best Passive Income Apps

8- Honeygain

Honeygain is likely a service that you’ve never heard of.  What it does is pay you for your unused Internet bandwidth.   Simply download the app to your smartphone, iPad, or any other device you own which uses the Internet, and it will start working automatically in the background.  

You do absolutely nothing, and the app pays you.  According to their online calculator, you would be paid $60 per month for sharing 20 GB of data per day.  It’s truly passive income.

9- Slidejoy

If you’re not easily annoyed by advertisements, then you could be making some money every time you unlock your phone.  Slidejoy is an app that shows you an advertisement or news story whenever your devices screen is locked.  Literally, all you have to do is slide right to unlock it and the ad goes away.  In exchange for allowing them to advertise to you, you’ll get paid in cash through Paypal.

Unfortunately, if you’re an iPhone user, you’re out of luck.  Slidejoy only works with Android phones.

Best Getting Paid Apps

Best Getting Paid Apps

10- Userfeel

How would you like to be paid at least $10 every time you visit a website?  That’s what the app Userfeel is offering if you sign up to become one of their testers.

Userfeel’s clients need people like you to conduct usability tests on their websites. You’ll be given a scenario (like looking for a specific item on the site) and then asked to perform some tasks.  That helps the site owners find and fix any potential issues.

Tests take roughly 10 to 20 minutes each, and you’ll be paid in cash via Paypal.  You also need to use the app from a laptop or desktop computer (no smartphones) with a working microphone.  It could be an extremely profitable use of your time if you’re stuck someplace waiting for 30 minutes or more such as an airplane terminal.

11- Foap

Do you have a ton of photos and videos just sitting around on your smartphone doing nothing?  If you’d like to turn them into money, then you could sell them on Foap.  

Foap takes the content you submit and licenses them to companies and marketers as stock imagery that they can use for advertisements, social media, and promotional campaigns.  As long as you’re cool with photos and videos being used for literally any type of marketing campaign, then put them to use making you some money!

DJ Whiteside

DJ Whiteside is a financial enthusiast who believes in helping other people to achieve financial independence. He’s constantly looking for practical ways to optimize savings, reduce spending, and create a lifetime of passive income. DJ holds an MBA from the University of Michigan, which allows him to take an analytical approach to financial topics. He has been a financial writer since 2011 and has self-published 5 personal finance eBooks relating to saving, retirement, and financial independence.

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