However, while I think most people love reward programs, actual usage of these programs isn’t always high. A recent study found that the average U.S. household is enrolled in 19 to 29 different loyalty programs, but only uses 5 to 12 of them.
The simple fact is that it is hard to remember what programs you’re in or how to go about claiming rewards. This problem is exactly why I’m a proponent of fully passive reward apps or credit cards: there’s no need for the user to do anything in order to benefit.
If you’re on the hunt for a new rewards app that can allow you to earn free gift cards and rewards without having to do anything, you need to check out the Drop app.
Drop is my absolute favorite rewards app, and I’ve been using the app to earn rewards for nearly 2 years now. I figured it was time to finally write a Drop app review and break down why Drop is one of my favorite and free money saving apps.
Let’s get to it!
Description: Drop is a free reward app that pays you for shopping in-store and online at your favorite stores and for new and exciting offers! To date, I've earned numerous free gift cards from using Drop before I shop.
Operating System: Android, IOS
Application Category: Rewards
Author: Tom Blake
Ease of Use
What Is Drop?
Drop is a free app that rewards users for shopping at their favorite store and for buying from partnered brands.
Founded in 2012, Drop has since grown into an incredibly popular reward app, with over 3 million downloads. The Drop app is available on both Android and IOS. Currently, Drop is available for download in the U.S. and Canada, and almost anyone with a debit or credit card can join the program.
How Drop Works
In a nutshell, the Drop app works in 5 simple steps.
- Download & Signup – create a free Drop account after downloading the mobile app.
- Connect a Card – connect your credit or debit card to the app.
- Choose Favorite Brands –
select 5 brands from a list of Drop partners. You automatically earn Drop points for shopping at these merchants.This feature has been moved (see below). Drop members now earn through special offers and (un)Limited Drops.
- Choose Bonus Offers (Optional) – opt-in for bonus cash back rewards on special, limited time deals.
- Redeem – redeem your Drop points for free gift card rewards.
Realistically, by having this app and shopping at your 5 chosen merchants, you can probably earn $10-$30 in free rewards each year without any effort. If you take advantage of some of Drop’s shopping options, you can definitely earn well over $100.
My Experience With The Drop App
The funny thing about a lot of other Drop reviews is that none of them post ANY proof of redemption to signal that they even use this app at all.
So, let me tell you: I’ve been using Drop for the last 2 years. In that time, I have earned approximately $52.
$40 has already been redeemed, as seen in the above screenshot, and the additional $12 are in my account balance (shown in next screenshots).
Additionally, $20 of my rewards resulted from referring other users to Drop, since their referral program gives new users and the referrer $5 each.
This is free and easy to do, but it goes to show that Drop is truly a humble but consistent passive earner.
So, you get the picture: you can earn some free gift cards with the Drop app, but it won’t dramatically change your finances.
Time to break down exactly how this process works!
Extra Reading: 8 Ways to Enjoy Free Starbucks.
Once you download Drop from the Apple or Google Play Store, singing up is easy. Just open the app and choose your banking institution to connect your debit or credit card.
You need to enter your banking information to connect your cards. This may concern some users. However, Drop uses the same level of security and encryption as other top FinTech companies, and you can read about Drop’s security to learn more.
Currently, Drop works with the following major banks:
- TD Bank
- Bank of America
- Wells Fargo
- Capital One
- American Express
- Walmart Rewards
Some other banks are on the list, and you can even search for local banks. Pretty much, if you have a debit or credit card, you’re good to go!
Drop App Stores (Edit 2020/05/04 – Drop Has Removed Power Offers)
I’m editing this Drop app review because there has been a massive change to how you make money with Drop.
Drop has now removed Power Offers from the app, which means you no longer earn automatic cashback for shopping at your 5 favorite stores.
Drop states Power Offers were removed because many members simply don’t shop anymore at the original 5 merchants they picked.
Instead of Power Offers, Drop members can now participate in (un)Limited Drops to earn more points.
The organe lightning bolt in the Drop app launches the Today’s Deal tab.
On this tab, you’ll find (un)Limited Drop cards that let you know how many points you’ll earn for shopping with a linked card for a specific offer.
You have to activate an offer before shopping, and (un)Limited Drops are share regulalry and are personalized to suit your brand preferences.
(un)Limited Drops don’t stick around forever, so it’s important to enable notifications in the Drop app to get updates when new opportunties are released.
(un)Limited Drops work in-store and online as long as you shop with a linked card, so don’t miss the chance to earn even more Drop points with this nifty feature.
Currently, these are the list of stores that users can choose for their Drop Power Offers (meaning they automatically earn points for shopping at these stores. Cash back amount is noted next to store name): Starbucks (1.2%) Walmart (0.2%) Shell (0.3%) Uber (1%) Tim Hortons (0.5%) McDonalds (0.8%) Shopper Drugmart (0.3%) Lyft (1%) Trader Joe’s (1.2%) Seamless (1.6%) Macy’s (0.8%) Fred Meyers (1.2%) Dunkin Donuts (1.4%) Target (0.8%) Urban Outfitters (1.5%) Whole Foods (0.8%) Walgreens (0.8%) Safeway (0.8%) Kroger (1%) Chipotle (1.2%) HEB (1%) 7-Eleven (1.6%) There are a few more stores, but these are the main ones. Note: cash back rewards vary between the U.S. and Canada. For example, American Drop users earn 1.2% cash back at Starbucks, while Canadian users earn 0.5% cash back. Offers are also subject to change at any time.
The best part about Drop’s Power Offers is that they stack with other rewards. If you use a cash back credit card or even rewards platforms like Rakuten, you can double-dip or triple-dip on savings! However, users should know that they cannot change their 5 Power Offers after their selection, so choose wisely!
Extra Reading – How I Saved More Than $400 With Rakuten.
Special Offers & Shopping
Passively earning Drop points through your 5 stores is a nice way to rack up free gift cards every year. However,
In addition to making use of (un)Limited Drops, you can also earn a hefty amount of Drop points is to actually shop through their app or to shop in-store at a merchant you manually select from the app.
The Drop app regularly lists partnered brands where you can shop to earn additional points. If you ever plan on shopping, it’s probably worth checking out the app for offers before deciding to buy.
There are usually dozens of offers available, and many ‘boosted’ offers give nice cash back bonuses that are much higher than your normal Power Offers. In fact, I’ve seen some boosted deals offering as much as 8% cash back.
However, where Drop truly shines is in their high value bonus offers.
If you signup for various reward programs, credit cards, or even apps, you can actually earn upwards of $75-$100 in Drop points!
Take the above screenshot for an example. Sure, you might not be interested in CoinSmart or a new RBC Rewards Visa, but their Lyft offer is paying $30 right now if you signup and complete a ride!
I don’t know about you, but I already use Uber quite often. It’s an absolute no-brainer to signup and use Lyft once to get a free $30. Plus, shopping through the Drop app is now more important for redeeming your rewards than ever before.
Drop Reward Options
Currently, users can redeem a healthy number of rewards from the Drop store.
Popular rewards include gift cards to:
- Dunkin Donuts
- Old Navy
- American Eagle
- Best Buy
- Boston Pizza
- Lulu Lemon
- Uber Eats
And plenty, plenty more.
However, Drop recently changed their reward structure.
Previously, users could redeem points for rewards as low as $1 Amazon gift cards, and there were plenty of $5 reward options as well.
Now, in order to unlock lower-tier gift cards, users must use the ‘Shop with Drop’ function outlined above at least once.
Again, this isn’t a massive dealbreaker since Drop updates their offers all the time and you’re bound to find something that you were panning on buying anyway. However, it wouldn’t be a truly honest Drop app review if I didn’t bring up this fact.
Drop is still a rather passive savings app. However, users have to put in a bit of work if they want to maximize this app and earn more than a single reward each year.
Other Ways To Earn
Recent Drop updates have also added new ways to earn, which is great news for anyone trying to grind out those gift cards!
1. Mobile Games
There are a number of apps that pay you to play games, and Drop has now joined that list!
A new Drop feature is their games tab. Under this tab, you’ll find a plethora of games to download and play in exchange for Drop points.
There’s a decent range of game genres, including:
- Strategy games
- Survival games
Games generally have a level requirement for you to earn points. However, there are some truly lucrative opprtunties.
For example, in the screenshot above, you can see that you can earn $28 worth of points for installing the Rise of Kingdoms app and reaching a certain level…not bad!
If you want to make money playing video games alongside shopping, definitely check out this new Drop feature!
I don’t think online surveys are worth it, but Drop’s new survey feature is slightly different.
With Drop’s survey section, you get matched to brand questionnaires after you fill out some demographic information.
Surveys are only a few questions long, and if you get disqualified, Drop still pays you partial points.
You also know how many points each survey pays making it easy to choose which ones are worth your time.
Frequently Asked Questions
Drop is one of the most popular rewards apps around. However, the app has also gone through plenty of changes (like the gift card threshold I mentioned above), so there’s also some confusion.
Time to break down some of the most common questions and concerns!
Is Drop Safe?
As mentioned, Drop uses the same level of security as many other FinTech apps, such as Acorns or Robin Hood.
However, at the end of the day, you have to be comfortable with sharing your data and logging in with your personal banking information.
Additionally, to access your transaction data, the drop system “transforms your credentials into a key that is meaningless out of context, even to us. No one will be able to tell from our system which account is yours once linked.”
So, technically your data is just an amalgamated mess that is not tied to you. But, once again, you need to be 100% comfortable with the fact that you are giving up your personal data for financial compensation.
Is Drop Legit?
I’ve never had a problem receiving my Drop points or redeeming them for rewards. Additionally, rewards are always paid out in a timely manner, and my entire experience with this app has been smooth.
You may have to wait a while for your points to credit. I suspect this is to ensure you cannot game the system with purchase and return games, but this app is certainly ‘legit.’
Is Drop Worth It?
Many Drop reviews will praise this app for being an incredible money maker. Some will even go so far as to say this app earns them several hundred dollars per year. However, I have yet to find another review that actually shows screenshots of earnings.
Here’s what I will say: Drop is worth it if you’re looking for easy, free money.
It’s an amazing app in the sense that you can use it to double-dip on credit card rewards or other offers. This app will not revolutionize your finances, but that’s not really the point. The point is to score some freebies and to treat yourself or a loved one to some fun gift cards!
So, I’d suggest downloading this app to give it a try, at the very least. Additionally, there are plenty of other apps like Drop that you can use to earn cash back rewards, so find a system that works for you!
Drop Chrome Extension
If mobile apps aren’t for you, you’ll be happy to know that the new Drop chrome extension is being rolled out in Beta testing for the United States!
Like other money saving browser extensions, the Drop extension allows users to earn points when they shop through their computer.
Other platforms like Honey or Rakuten already have this system, so it’s nice that Drop is expanding their reach and enabling users to earn rewards more easily. With this extension, you just have to shop as you normally would, and you’ll earn Drop points that are credited to your mobile app/account.
Apps Like Drop
I thought I would update my Drop app review with some other useful cashback reward apps you can try out if you really love using Drop but want to maximize your rewards.
Some of the top other apps that are like Drop include:
- Ampli – This is a Canadian-only app that is basically how Drop used to be when it was passive! Checkout my review and earn a $5 signup bonus as well!
- Dosh – Dosh is a U.S. reward app that pays you real cash for shopping at hundreds of stores. Again, this is like Drop when the app was passive. You can also checkout our post on the best apps like Dosh.
- Checkout 51 – A popular rebate app for groceries and gas. You have to scan receipts unlike Drop, but it’s another nifty way to earn rewards with your smartphone.
- Bumped – This app pays you bits of stock in the companies you spend money at, completely passively!
Hopefully, this list of Drop alternatives helps you maximize your annual rewards!
Final Thoughts + My Suggestions
Ultimately, no one is ever going to hate getting free gift cards or rewards. If you’re comfortable sharing some of your data, I think Drop is an excellent way to score freebies that you can use to treat yourself or a friend.
Obviously, Drop will not revolutionize your finances. Additionally, this app is slightly less passive than it used to be. If you want to maximize your Drop rewards, you’ll need to take time to shop through their app or to select a merchant before shopping in-store.
My suggestion is to simply install Drop, set it, and forget it. If you ever have major shopping trips plan, check the app beforehand for offers. By doing so, you can probably score around $50 of free rewards each year without much work.
Thanks for reading! I hope my Drop app review has helped to clarify what this app is all about.
Catch you guys in the next post.
Tom is a 23 year old recent college graduate from Canada with a passion for side hustling, passive income, and marketing. This Online World is all about providing people with honest ways to make and save more money by using technology. To learn more about Tom, read his About Page!
If you’re interested in freelance writing services or want to partner with This Online World, please visit Tom Blake Digital to get in touch!