If you do most of the shopping for your household and want to save more money, it’s never been easier thanks to the number of reward apps out there.
These days, there are dozens of different apps and ways to get paid to shop. And I’ve personally used plenty of shopping apps over the years to cut down on expenses.
Ibotta, one of the leading cash back shopping apps, is the perfect example. It lets you earn rebates for shopping in-store and online, and the platform has millions of members.
But is Ibotta legit? And how much does this cash back app actually pay?
In this Ibotta review, I’m sharing my personal experience saving money with Ibotta, how this app works, and how to decide if it’s worth downloading.
Let’s get to it!
Table of Contents
What Is Ibotta?
Ibotta is a popular cash back app that lets you earn rewards for buying everyday purchases like groceries, clothing, home goods, beauty products, and gas. You can then redeem your cash back for cash or various gift card prizes.
The app has hundreds of different cash-back offers you can browse and add to your shopping list. And all you have to do is upload your receipt after shopping to earn some free money.
Overall, the app is very user friendly and simple to use, this is an excellent way to earn free money for the purchases you are making anyway.
Is Ibotta Legit?
Yes, Ibotta is a legit app that lets you earn cash back for your everyday purchases. I am a long-time Ibotta user and use the app almost daily, and I’ve been paid by the app numerous times without issues over the years.
The bottom line is that Ibotta is one of the best reward apps out there if you want to save money on everyday purchases.
The app won’t make anyone rich. But saving $10 to $50 a month or even more is certainly possible if you complete enough offers.
How Does Ibotta Work?
I’ve been using Ibotta for several years, and in that time, the app has added quite a few features. But at its core, Ibotta works in five simple steps:
- Download the app
- Shop for in-store offers
- Shop for online offers
- Link your loyalty cards
- Get paid
Let’s go over how each step works so you can start saving more money.
1. Download The App
Ibotta is free to download and is available on both iOs and Android devices.
At the time of writing, Ibotta also has a $10 sign up bonus for new members. All you have to do is sign up and spend $30 on a qualifying online retailer to get the bonus, which is a great way to get started.
To maximize your savings, make sure that you sign up for Ibotta text alerts and follow them on social media. This lets you get a heads up on new offers arriving regularly.
There are also Ibotta shopper Facebook groups you can join that will show you how to get the most savings from this app possible by using it in combination with other apps.
2. Shop In-Store For Offers
One of the main ways to earn with Ibotta is to shop for in-store offers and then upload your receipt to earn cash back.
To use Ibotta, you browse the app for various offers and add them to a virtual shopping list. Once you’re done shopping, you scan your receipt with Ibotta’s in-app scanner and upload it for proof of purchase. Ibotta then credits you with cash back.
Here are some examples of current Ibotta offers:
- $0.75 back on Capri Sun
- $1.25 back on an 8 oz brick of Philadelphia cream cheese
- $1.50 back on 12-packs of Mountain Dew
- $1.50 back on packs of Stouffer’s meals
- $2 back on Downy detergent
- 2% back at LEGO
- 3% back at HP
- 4% back at Booking.com
- 4% back at Shein
- 10% back at Under Armour
Grocery offers are where I find the most savings with Ibotta.
However, Ibotta also has cash back deals for categories like apparel, dining, electronics, health and beauty, home, kids, pets, and travel. And I like that you get a mix of flat cash-back deals and also percentage deals.
I usually scroll through the app quickly to select offers for things that I’m going to buy before I head out. I then use the handy shopping list feature to make sure I get everything on my list.
Ibotta also has a barcode scanner that you can use to make sure you’re buying the right item for an offer. Since offers can be for very specific sizes or flavors, this is a great Ibotta hack to know.
After you upload your receipt, cash credits your account within a day.
3. Shop Online
Ibotta also lets you save money when you shop online. All you have to do is download Ibotta’s shopping extension so you can find offers when you browse the web and earn.
This extension helps you identify Ibotta offers, compare prices when shopping, and get cash back on your purchases. It’s similar to extensions like Rakuten, but it has a lot more everyday essentials and basic offers, which is nice.
If you order your groceries online for pick up or delivery, you can also save money on the promotions just like if you shopped in a store.
I particularly like this extension for the fact that it identifies opportunities to save. I’ve been shopping for my child’s gear for summer camp this week and it tells me if I can find the same items at a lower price at a different retailer.
Just note that certain online offers can take 60 days or more to credit unlike in-store offers.
Our post on Ibotta vs Rakuten compares these two online shopping options in even more detail.
4. Link Your Loyalty Cards
Another awesome Ibotta feature is the ability to link store loyalty cards to your account to automatically get credit for your purchases.
Ibotta lets you link loyalty cards from 100+ stores, including:
- Food Lion
While this is a more passive earner and better than scanning receipts, I admit, this is the one part of Ibotta that I’m not a fan of. I do use store loyalty cards to save money at my favorite retailers but I have struggled to get most of them connected at Ibotta, so keep this in mind.
5. Cash Out
Ibotta pays you with real cash and lets you redeem your earnings once you earn $20. PayPal cash and bank deposits are available, as well as dozens of free gift cards to companies like:
If you choose gift cards, they get saved in a digital wallet which you can easily access when shopping or dining out. It’s a great way to keep all of them handy in one place for when you are ready to use them.
How Much Does Ibotta Pay?
The amount of money you earn from Ibotta depends on how much you shop, but if you use it smartly on the things you buy anyway, the savings can add up quickly.
For average shoppers, earning $5 to $25 per month with Ibotta is very realistic. After all, this only takes a few redemptions per month, which should be possible since Ibotta has thousands of offers and adds new ones daily.
You can increase your Ibotta earnings by taking advantage of their bonus offers, and also referring your friends and family. Look in your Ibotta app to get your unique referral code to refer to anyone you know that likes to save money!
What Are Some Stores That Work With Ibotta?
Ibotta works with thousands of retailers to help shoppers save money on both their online and in-store purchases. It’s available for most major retailers. Some offers are store specific, while others are for any retailer that sells that particular product.
Here are just some of the places you can use Ibotta:
- Bass Pro Shops
- Best Buy
- Sam’s Club
The variety of offer categories, ranging from groceries to travel, is another reason I like using Ibotta.
Is Ibotta Safe?
Yes, Ibotta is safe and pays you with cash back for completing shopping offers. I use this app almost daily and earn quite a bit of money back every month with it. And the app doesn’t require anything that could put your personal info at risk.
You have to be comfortable sharing your purchasing data with Ibotta to use the app. But you don’t need to share banking details or a lot of personal information, so privacy isn’t an issue.
Pros & Cons
- The app is very easy to use
- Can be stacked with other promotional apps to increase savings.
- Some items are free after rebate or have BOGO deals
- Wide variety of gift cards and reward payment opinions
- Rewards arrive almost instantly
- Sign up bonuses are often available
- Works in-store and online
- Partners with most major retailers
- You have to claim offers before shopping, which takes time
- App can occasionally be glitchy
- Popular offers can disappear quickly, so you need to shop quickly
- Some offers now prohibit coupon stacking
- Some offers are extremely specific and you won’t be reimbursed if you get the wrong one
- Receipts must be submitted within 7 days to be eligible for reimbursement
- Higher payout threshold (minimum of $20-$25) than many reward apps
- Local merchants like independent groceries or bodegas aren’t on Ibotta
Other Ibotta Reviews
After using Ibotta for years, I think it’s a legitimate app that any shopper should have on their phone.
But one of the best ways to tell if a side hustle app is worth it or not is to read testimonials from other users. And, there are plenty of Ibotta reviews on forums like reddit where you can find plenty of feedback.
Here are what some other Ibotta reviews are saying in this thread:
- rivaset101 says: “Sometimes it takes a while to reach the minimum, but I still think it’s worth it. Especially if you’re good about finding other people’s receipts.”
- smj1488 says: “Yes. I got $45 back last month. Usually an average of $5 a month.”
- krystaalexandria says: “It can absolutely be worth it if you buy brand-name items regularly. If you’re more of a store brand type of person, I’d still say it’s worth it but will take longer to cash out.”
- rsk8r14 says: “Absolutely worth it! I’ve racked up $1k in 4 years. BUT, I’m not a super user — meaning I don’t buy a lot of the products that have rebates. I do the best at Walmart.”
- SaraAB87 says: “This app didn’t work for me, I was barely making anything on it. I don’t buy a lot of products on the lists and I buy generics.”
As you can see, many of these Ibotta reviews are positive, and people are saving $5 to $25 per month or even more in some cases.
Some people complain that Ibotta is glitchy or that it doesn’t work well for no-name brands. However, it’s still a steady earner for most people.
This Ibotta review from YouTuber Saving With Christina also shares how Ibotta works and what to expect in terms of earning potential.
The Best Apps Like Ibotta
I think Ibotta is a worthwhile shopping app for just about anyone. But you can also use numerous other shopping apps to maximize your savings.
Some of my favorite apps like Ibotta include:
- Fetch Rewards: A leading grocery rewards app with a $3 cash out minimum
- Swagbucks: A popular survey site that also pays you to shop online or in-store and for upload receipts.
- Pogo: A passive income app that pays you to shop and share location data.
- Upside: The best gas rewards app you can use to save on fuel.
- Rakuten: One of the leading online shopping cash back platforms.
- Drop: Another app that pays you to shop and for playing games.
- Receipt Hog: Another receipt scanning rewards app.
- NCPMobile: One more way to shop and scan receipts to earn.
Tom also made a video sharing some of his favorite cash back apps, including ones like Ibotta, Drop, and several others you can use to get free money.
Extra Reading – Ibotta vs Fetch Rewards – Which App Is Best?.
Is Ibotta A Scam?
No, Ibotta isn’t a scam. The company has paid out millions in rewards since it started in 2012 and millions of users use this app daily, myself included. And I’ve never had an issue getting paid in my time using the app.
While the app may sound too good to be true, it is indeed a safe and legitimate app to save money. Retailers pay to feature their products on Ibotta to get shoppers to try new items and to purchase from their stores.
Just note that to get money back with Ibotta, you have to spend money. If you’re buying things that you normally purchase, then this is just free money for doing your normal shopping.
It can be tempting to purchase things you don’t normally buy just because there is a good rebate. If it is something that you will use, then no harm, however use a touch of caution against spending money on products that you won’t ever use.
Frequently Asked Questions
Is There An Ibotta Sign Up Bonus?
Ibotta often has a sign up bonus ranging from $5 to $20 or even more in some cases. When you sign up, you can use my Ibotta referral code, JEHTTJL, to get a $5 bonus when you redeem your first offer.
There’s also a $10 sign up bonus right now if you sign up and spend at least $30 online.
Does Ibotta Really Pay?
Yes, Ibotta pays real money, and you can cash out your earnings for PayPal cash, direct bank transfer, or with dozens of gift cards. I’ve cashed out numerous times and can confirm that Ibotta pays.
Are There Any Ibotta Hacks?
The best Ibotta hack is to use the in-app scanner to check product barcodes so you buy the right products. Linking loyalty cards and looking for offers regularly are also two useful Ibotta tricks to know.
However, there aren’t any Ibotta hacks for free cash. If you see generators or programs claiming they can earn free money on Ibotta without shopping, they’re likely scams.
Is There An Ibotta Referral Program?
Ibotta’s referral program pays you $10 if someone signs up with your code and completes a shopping offer. Your referral also gets $5.
This is a very good referral bonus program, and I like that both you and the person you invite to join earn something.
Is Ibotta Worth It?
Ibotta is worth it if you do most of your household’s shopping and want an easy way to save $5 to $20 per month or so. In contrast, it’s not worth using if you barely shop in-store and don’t want to spend time looking for offers before shopping.
As a long time couponer, years ago I used to pick up several Sunday newspapers for the coupon inserts, print printable coupons and have a large coupon binder I took to the store every time I went.
Couponing has changed and it is now mostly digital. If you have a smartphone, there are some excellent apps to save money, and Ibotta is at the top of my list. Easy to use, it’s a quick way to save money on the go.
Whether you shop in person or online, there are lots of ways to save money with Ibotta. If you’re looking to save money, cut grocery costs or both, this app is usually my top recommendation. Simple and user friendly, it is great for beginners and I recommend it often to others.
I have personally used Ibotta for many years before writing this Ibotta review and it’s not uncommon for me to have $100 – $300 or more a month in savings.
While PayPal payments and bank deposits are a payment option, I usually redeem my earnings for free gift cards that my family can use to dine out or go shopping.
Plus, you can always stack Ibotta with apps like Fetch Rewards or other money-saving apps, to maximize rewards.
Hopefully my Ibotta review helps you decide if this cash back app is worth it or not.
Looking for even more money-making ideas? Checkout:
Description: Ibotta is a free cash back app that lets people earn cash and gift cards by shopping for groceries and everyday essentials.
Operating System: Android, iOS, Desktop
Application Category: Reward Apps
Author: Kim Ritter