Earning money back eating out has never been so easy. Several new apps act as a credit card and debit card booster, where you’ll link your card(s) and automatically be applied to cash back offers including several local restaurants and gas stations.
For example, you can link a Chase Sapphire Card or your Bank’s Debit Card, and if you use those applied cards through these apps, you’ll get Cash Back when you shop at the advertised areas on the app’s interface. It’s super easy and straightforward, and it’s almost like getting Free Money!
Most of these apps are backed by the security company behind Citi Bank, Venmo, American Express, and other highly respected financial companies (so your info is safe).
These apps arefree to use or are included in a monthly cost that is associated with the service
But First, What is Cash Back?
- Apps That Save Money Eating Out
- 1: DOSH
- 2: Drop
- 3: Groupon +
- 4: Spent
- 5: Shop Your Way
- 6: Yelp Cash Back
- 7: Fuel Rewards
- 8: Stash
- 9: Acorns
- 10: Swagbucks Local
- 11: AMEX Offers
- 12: Your Bank!
- 13: Coupons.com
- 14: EBates
- 15: Freebird Rides
- 16: VISA Local Offers
- 17: Others (we’ll eventually get to)
Cash Back is often given out by specific retailers and merchants so that you remain loyal to that particular store.
Cash Back occurs when you shop or dine at a specific place, pay your bill, and earn advertised the money back.
How Card Link Apps Work
What exactly is a Card Linkable app? The app Dosh, for example, will link your card and give you money back for shopping…it’s that simple. It’s a must-have app, and I’m not going to fill your precious time with fluff and other lengthy explanations. It’s an app you should have in your wallet because it’s so darn easy to use. I am not bullshitting you.
Here’s how these Card Linked Offers work:
- Sign Up to a Particular App
- Link a Credit or Debit Card
- Look at the Dashboard
- Find Stores with Different Cash Back Rates
- If You Shop at One or All of these Stores You Get Advertised Money Back
- You Must Use the App-Linked Credit or Debit Card
How to For Card Linked Apps
To sign up properly, you’ll need:
- A Valid Email Address
- A Real Debit Card (Try These!)
- A Real Credit Card (Try This One!)
- Android Device or Apple iOS Device
Please note that once you’ve successfully linked a credit or debit card, you’ll need to use that card that’s connected to the app to receive the cash back!
Apps That Save Money Eating Out
Dosh is one of the more popular card link apps out there with a wide array of options. From the Dashboard (below screenshot) you’ll see the Cash Back rates of local places…including Mobil!
Yes, you can fill up your gas tank and get money back on top of what you receive from a cash back credit card!!
Dosh also carries Cash Back for Travel reservations, but we’ll admit they aren’t great deals. You might also note they offer Online Cash Back; sadly, we don’t recommend these two parts of the app. You’ll need at least 25 dollars to use PayPal to Cashout. And if you are a business, you’ll be required to fill out proper tax forms for documentation purposes!
Dosh Referral System
You can make a little Dosh money by referring people to the app through your user Dashboard. Lots of Facebook groups try to find out how to cheat Dosh, but in fact, it’s a simple referral system with loads of fraud prevention…our advice is not to try to cheat or hack the Dosh app through Referring fake friends. In most cases, the Dosh app referral reward is just $5, but during peak seasons we’ve seen Dosh raise this to $10.
Make Sure Your Referrals Link Their Credit or Debit Cards to Earn Money!
This app has been recently released and offers a hands-off approach to earning points. Link your primary credit/debit card and earn points when you spend on merchants like Walgreens, Chipotle, or Target (few others). You’ll need to select five merchants you will spend the most with and have only one time to do this! You can still earn points through online merchants and offers. Soon you can redeem points for gift cards at places like Starbucks.
Another fun way to earn more points is to play their game where it’s similar to the game Snake, make one point for each thing you eat with your Snake!
3: Groupon +
Has Groupon solved it’s the biggest issue of the embarrassment of showing paper coupons to your waiter? For many, Groupon is an excellent gateway for deals and discounts through our local community. There is one major flaw though:Social Conscious of Taking Out a Groupon and Presenting It.
Sure most of us don’t feel wrong handing over a Groupon, but for many, we know that when you offer a Groupon to a server or event, the business itself will lose money doing so.
For many of us, it’s pretty embarrassing to hand out a paper Groupon or even handing our phone to a waiter for them to redeem. It feels dated and kind of irritating.
Coupons have been around for ages now, but Groupons tend to be more significant discounts than a typical coupon cut-out. When you fork over a restaurant based coupon, you may feel wrong in doing so. Well, with Groupon’s newest addition, you can swipe your card and feel like you’ve always have been without any contempt.
How Groupon Plus Works
Before you go looking for Cash Back (Plus) offers you’ll need to do a few things first to make sure you’ll get money back correctly. To do so head to this Groupon Plus Page directly https://www.groupon.com/mylinkeddeals. You’ll likely be prompted to sign up or log in there.
From this page, you’ll need to link a credit card (or debit) to assign cash back to.
MAKE SURE TO USE THIS CARD WHEN YOU PAY AND ACTIVATE GROUPON + DEALS.
Now that you’ve linked card(s) to your account you can start to claim offers atno additional cost (YAY!).Doing this, however, isn’t fully advertised by Groupon yet. In fact, in our trials, we’ve noted that Plus deals aren’t even on the front page yet. This means you are ahead of the game when it comes to saving on restaurant deals!!
Finding Groupon + Cash Back Deals
If you are subscribed to Groupon’s newsletter, there’s a good chance you’ve received some Plus notification, but for many of us, email isn’t always checked. You can find + deals by heading to the regular search page of Groupon. Once you are there in the search bar, enter in “Cash Back.” Oddly enough entering in “Groupon+” or “Plus” won’t get results.
Probably the most ambitious competitor to DOSH would be SPENT. SPENT has a decent selection of 1% cash back places like Netflix, Starbucks, Walgreens, and other popular merchants. This means you don’t have to shop locally to earn cash back, you can earn an additional 1% on your Netflix Subscription. It’s free money for those unwilling to give up that cable cutting service.
Locking In Merchants…
Unlike Drop, you won’t be stuck with a set of merchants you shop at often. And although the rewards aren’t as high, you can still earn in-store cashback on select Gas Stations like
So consider this a nice middle choice to Drop and DOSH since you’ll have even more options to choose from!
It should be of note that the Spent App currently does not have an Affiliate or Referral Program.
Remember Sears, the popular mall anchor store? Shop Your Way is owned by them and maybe their last leg of existence. It’s foreseeable that Shop Your Way will eventually become the Sears Online Shopping portal.
If you were a customer at Sear’s or Kmart, you might recall this Loyalty program. The Shop Your Way Loyalty program would allow you to purchase items with points earned through your loyalty (and previous purchases). Now, Shop Your Way has evolved to enable you to earn points from other places like:
- Sears (ones that are still around)
- Burger King
- Popeye’s Chicken
- Several of Your Local Restaurants
Operating much like the other card link apps, Shop Your Way will link to your card and will give you points for your loyalty to these locations as well! Plus, get points from Online stores like Ace Hardware, AliExpress and several hundred of others!
Shop Your Way’s Major Partner is UBER
It’s no secret that if the app wants to survive, it’ll need some significant value proposition. Enter their exclusive UBER partnership. By connecting to the favorite ride-sharing app, you’ll be able to earn $2 in points for Every Single Ride You Take with UBER. If you live in a city or often travel Shop Your Way has decent value for you.
Another one of Shop Your Way’s significant points of interest is their redemption process. This is where you will encounter the full Sear’s catalog of products and services. When you’ve earned a $2 ride on UBER, for example, you’ll be able to redeem the $2 in their storefront, sporting thousands upon thousands of products that may suit your needs. Unfortunately, as of now, there appears to be no way of extracting money directly, so the only way to redeem is to spend more on this catalog.
The famous review website, Yelp, has released new card-linked cash back feature allows you to try out new restaurants while also earning money back. Probably Yelp Cash Back the most underutilized Card Linked App!
It’s as simple as linking your credit or debit card to your purchase at the given Yelp location you about to go to, and you’ll get an advertised cash back amount. Here are the steps you’ll need to do to get Cash Back!
Step One: Link a Card
Head to the Cash Back Card Linking Page:
Step Two: Find a Place
If the card is successfully linked, you are automatically eligible for Cash Back Places.
Make sure to Filter for Cash Back Places when you search!!!
Step Three: Pay with Linked Card
Let’s say you spend $20 at this Restaurant:
You get $1 back on your statement
Yelp’s Link Card integration makes a ton of sense because most people tend to look for good restaurants nearby and hope for deals elsewhere. With its integration with Card Link technology (from a company called Empyr) you’ll be able to score sweet cash back deals!
7: Fuel Rewards
Some apps allow you to save on every gallon of gas, and Fuel Rewards is a part of it. There are additional saving options when it comes to the Fuel Rewards program at Shell. Link any credit card (Discover excluded), and you may earn supplementary per gallon savings.
- Shop at participating grocery stores
- Dine at participating restaurants
- Participating hotel and car rentals
- Fuel Rewards Online Shopping Portal
Just by having any Mastercard (Credit Card) you’ll be eligible for an initial bonus of 25c off each gallon!
This popular investing app just announced their automatic cash back function. With this version of a Card Link, you’ll unlock similar offers at dining and shopping places, but when you earn money back, the money can be deposited into yourinvestment account. It’s almost like rewards your finances by dining out!
Like Stash, Acorns is now entering the space where you’ll earn a certain amount for shopping in person and online and get money towards your investment accounts. Same idea, but this would be focused on those who are already using the Acorns Investing App.
Acorns Found Money, which is the actual name of the Card Link function, will give you more premium online shopping partners, along with shopping in store at places like Nike Outlet, for example.
There’s also a convienient Chrome Extension tool that will help you find more offers when you are shopping online.
10: Swagbucks Local
The popular survey website offers a similar function where you can earn additional Swagbucks for shopping and dining nearby. You’ll be required to link the card of your choice to the app, and you should probably do this through a Desktop, but once you’ve done it, you’ll be eligible for extra earning opportunities instantly!
For example, if you shop at an available dining location and they offer 5% in Swagbucks, you’ll get the cash back in the form of Swagbucks. You can start redeeming Swagbucks through PayPal Gift Cards when you reach a plateau of 10,000 points.
One of the major benefits of using Swagbucks Local is that you get a bonus of 500 Swagbucks just for linking a card!
11: AMEX Offers
American Express sports not only excellent customer service, a slew of fantastic credit cards, and a secure online interface for bill payments, but the modern financial institution offers one of the best value propositions for any credit card holder out there. American Express has offers from Delta, SPG (Marriott now), and other larger companies.
AMEX Offers links potential deals and coupons to your card so that if you spend your card at specific locations and follow the offer, you can receive money back (sometimes AMEX points). For example, recently Rover.com was on there.
If you linked the Rover.com AMEX Offer and spent $75, AMEX would credit you with $25 in statement credit. Yes, it’s pretty instant to get into your account!!
12: Your Bank!
It’s a possibility that there are card linked offers found online through your bank. Though you wouldn’t find these offers through smaller FDIC insured banks, you are likely to find offers on these banks:
- Bank of America
- Wells Fargo
All of these bank offers work the same, and you are likely to be enrolled very quickly since you have an applicable debit card inside your pocket already…unless you lost it somewhere. For the above example, you don’t have to do much other than click “Add” and you’ll be eligible for an offer from Carabbas or Shipt.
It comes as no surprise to us that a popular coupon clipping website is getting into this field before it explodes. Coupons.com is well known for their digital coupon cutouts where you can print or save to your phone several in-store redeemable coupons.
Using the Card Link technology, they’ve also entered the field with similar offers to Yelp and Groupon. You can shop and dine locally and get cash back for shopping!
This one is most known for their online shopping rebate portal offers in-store cash back. Although not the largest selection that others carry, EBates focuses on the retail side of things pretty well with offers from many major retailers like BuyBuyBaby for example.
For this one, you’ll need to have an Account with Ebates and simply link a card just like we do with the other apps.
15: Freebird Rides
The Freebird Rides app leverages this amazing technology and makes an interesting twist on it. Through the app, you’ll link with UBER. Once you open up the Freebird Rides app, you can earn money by using an UBER to go to specific locations.
This is amazing for businesses that want additional exposure, while great for customers who want to explore their town! It’s a win-win! Try our Freebird Rides Promo Code: EC945 to get $10 for signing up.
UBER definitely sees the opportunity within Card Linked offers since they’ve also worked hard with VISA to get additional offers inside the UBER app itself.
You’ll need to have a VISA linked to your UBER account, plus you’ll need to browse the UBER app to see these offers!
See how VISA Local Offers works through this video:
17: Others (we’ll eventually get to)
The list is growing, and it makes good sense as to why. This is exciting technology that bridges the online world to in-store shopping and dining. This could be a game changer and we think it is! Here are some others that have popped up:
- Nerdwallet Cash Back
- UPromise Dining
- JetBlue Dining
- United MileagePlus X
- Southwest RapidRewards Dining
- Hilton Honors Dining
- HawaiianMiles Marketplace
What is Online to Offline Shopping? (O2O)
Promo codes may become a thing of the past with this new value proposition that is taking the mobile world by storm. These apps and they are growing in quantity, link online apps and shopping to offline shopping. Online to Offline Shopping bridges the gap between online research and rewarding for offline dining and shopping!
Can I Use Multiple Card Linked Apps?
Although you certainly should use multiple apps that save you money, some of these apps actually use the same systems to reward you money. That’s right, these multi-million dollar websites use the same people for this kind of technology. On the other hand, there are only 3 major companies in this space as of now.
- Rewards Network
- Rakuten Linked Card Offers Network
If you happen to use the apps that utilize Rewards Network, for example, you may not get cash back on both apps.
Are You a Franchise Owner or a Business Interested?
Good thing as a blogger it’s our responsibility to dig a bit deeper within these kinds of value propositions. I personally reached out to the company behind much of these app integrations, Empyr, and became a channel partner. In other words, I can help your business get onto Yelp Cash Back or Groupon Cash Back! Benefits of using these card-linked offers:
- You Only Pay if it Works
- Huge Value Proposition for New Customers
If you are interested, comment below!