If you aren’t using cashback apps then you are losing out on money that is there for the taking.
You could make hundreds of pounds every year just by using cashback apps in the UK to shop at all of your favourite, and essential, brands.
Since I started using cashback apps a few years ago I have banked over £300 – it’s so worth taking the time to use them.
Once you’re set up it only requires a couple of clicks before you can then shop as normal to reap the benefits.
This article will take you through the best apps to save money on your shopping.
This post contains affiliate links.
Top UK cashback apps
- Airtime Rewards
What is the best cashback app in the UK
TopCashback and Quidco are the main rivals for the king of cashback apps.
Both offer a basic free membership and a premium membership option (Quidco’s is more expensive at £1 a month compared to TopCashback’s £5 for a year).
Your best bet is to sign up for both and double check what rates of cashback each app is offering depending on what it is you are looking to buy.
The percentages may be the same or vary, and could change over time. Always check before you buy, once you’re signed up to both apps this won’t take very long to do.
Quick Quidco vs TopCashback comparison
It’s worth noting that for many of these retailers there is extra cashback if it is your first purchase with that retailer. These results show the percentage cashback offered for all purchases (not on specific products or ranges) for return customers.
What are cashback apps?
A cashback app will pay you money back for purchases you make with retailers via their shopping links.
Cashback apps partner up with shops and online retailers you probably already use – including the big brands like supermarkets and high street stores.
You sign up with the cashback app, then from the app click their link to the retailer you want to purchase something from.
You then complete your purchase and the cashback app will give you a percentage of your purchase back via your account.
It can take a few weeks for your money to appear in your account, but once it does you can typically withdraw to either your PayPal account or bank account.
How do cashback apps work?
So why are cashback apps prepared to give you money back from your purchases made with other companies? What’s in it for them?
The cashback app will be receiving money in exchange for the purchases you make after it has sent you to shop at retailers.
Your purchases made via the app’s special links to retailers are tracked. The cashback app then splits the money it made with you, handing you back some of the money it earned.
This is also known as affiliate marketing. The cashback app gets £££ for sending you to shop.
Best cashback apps explained
Let’s take a closer look at those top cashback apps in the UK, as well as the rest of the best.
Not all cashback apps operate in the same way and you may find some fit into your lifestyle and are more appealing than others.
This is one of the best known and biggest cashback sites.
As well as cashback for customers who regularly shop with partnered brands, TopCashback also offers special exclusive deals where cashback is much more generous. This is often for new customers, or on particular products.
Using it is simple. Once your account is set up then browse through the offers and brands in the TopCashback app, or on their website, when logged into your account.
Once you see a deal you want, or a retailer you want to shop with, then you click the link in the TopCashback app and go through to the website of the retailer. You then shop as normal and checkout.
You’ll see your purchase has been tracked once it’s been made in your TopCashback account.
However it may take a few weeks for your money to be available for you to withdraw from your account.
Despite this wait, because of the volume of retailers on TopCashback – from holiday companies to clothes shops – you will find you can earn hundreds of pounds a year back on your shopping.
Sign up to TopCashback here.
Quidco works in the same way as TopCashback.
These two are big rivals and sometimes one company trumps the other in terms of the percentage money back on offer.
It’s worth signing up to both and checking which has the most generous offers depending on what you want to buy.
This cashback app works a little differently to TopCashback and Quidco, but once you’re set up it’s much easier to use.
When you download the app and create your account you will be asked to link your debit card or cards to the account. It then tracks your purchases made with partner brands – such as Boots, Waterstones and Zizzi.
Its biggest downside is it doesn’t have as many partnered brands as the two big cashback apps.
But once you’ve added your cards to the account you can spend and not even think about having to check you’ve clicked a link to track your spends.
Instead of receiving cash in your bank account, Airtime Rewards credits your mobile phone account.
I’ve earned over £100 off my mobile phone bill since I started using it, so it’s well worth it!
Use my referral code LFCKYUQGY to earn £1 on your account if you spend within seven days when you sign up.
Check out my full Airtime Rewards review here.
You purchase gift cards not products through this cashback app.
JamDoughnut has a decent selection of big shops signed up – including several of the big supermarkets such as Morrisons, Sainsbury’s, M&S and Waitrose.
Although TopCashback and Quidco do also sell some gift cards for these supermarket retailers, they don’t for all of those listed above.
While you can get cashback from those apps for online shopping at some of those supermarkets, the benefit of JamDoughnut is you can scan your gift cards at the checkout, so you don’t have to be an online grocery shopper.
Unlike with other cashback apps where you click through the links to then shop as you usually would, you need to buy a gift card to earn your cashback.
You need to earn 1000 points to withdraw £10. This is sent to your bank account, however just to add JamDoughnut will charge you a few pennies for the withdrawal.
Because it’s not too hard to earn those 1000 points – especially if you use it for your grocery shopping – you can cashout pretty regularly and payment is almost immediately.
This is unlike my experience with other cashback apps that can take many weeks to approve your payouts.
You can read my full review of the JamDoughnut app here.
The Shoppix app is not competitive when it comes to the percentage you can earn for your purchases.
But it is an app that you can use in tandem with all of the other cashback apps.
This is a receipt scanning app that awards you points for taking photos of your paper receipts, or forwarding your email receipts. Once you collect enough points you can cashout.
So make your usual purchases through your favourite cashback app – such as TopCashback – and then be sure to log your receipt with Shoppix.
I calculated that you’ll only make a few pennies per receipt, so it will take a long time to hit the 3200 tokens you need to receive just £5.
Payment is via PayPal or you can opt to receive shopping vouchers for Amazon, iTunes or Love2Shop.
You can read my full Shoppix review here.
This cool app gives you cashback which goes into a savings pot for your kid – or a child you know.
Like other apps mentioned here you can shop at thousands of well-known retailers to earn cashback.
It’s particularly great because family and friends can also link to your KidStart account so that they can help boost your child’s savings.
KidStart can link to any Child Trust Fun account and most Junior ISAs, plus any savings account that accepts electronic cash payments.
This is a great way to save some extra money for your child’s future!
This cashback app makes the list because it gets rave reviews from some users online – albeit it has a pretty poor rating on TrustPilot for some reasons outlined below.
Shopmium provides cashback on specific products it lists on its app at specific retailers, such as Tesco, Waitrose and ASDA.
You purchase the products in the offer and then scan your receipt in the app to prove purchase. You’ll then receive money back on your purchase.
The percentage you receive back can be pretty decent and payment is pretty prompt.
But I must confess with Shopmium I’ve been left pretty disappointed. I just don’t get the hype.
It’s possible that it’s just me who doesn’t see much use in this app, but all I ever see on there are offers for products I’ve never heard of and/or have no intention of buying.
I don’t love this app, BUT that’s my own experience. You may well love trying brand new food items based on deals, in which case it’s right up your street.
It’s a lovely looking app and it does have a variety of offers on there.
Unlike Shoppix, this app will only grant you cashback on your receipts that show you purchased specific items.
CheckoutSmart has a variety of offers that change over time. For example a recent one I saw was £2 cashback when you purchase Richmond meat-free meatballs.
Like Shopmium, I rarely ever see anything I would want to or need to purchase. It may be great for some people however which is why it makes the list!
This is a money-making app that gives you money for doing surveys, playing games and shopping!
There is a wide selection of retailers partnered up with SwagBucks offering you cashback, including Argos, Iceland, Co-op Food and Simply Cook.
The app also has special offers with brands, including extra money off, but you may find a lot of these are similar to what you would find on TopCashback and Quidco.
You find the offer you want to use in the Swagbucks app, click through the link and shop, then you earn SwagBucks in your account.
Check out my full Swagbucks review.
Are cashback apps worth trying?
Whether you are a shopaholic or someone who avoids buying anything but the essentials, if you are not using cashback apps then you are missing out on money.
Cashback is there for the taking from retailers you probably use every day already.
It’s well worth taking a look at these top cashback apps in the UK and seeing what money you could be making, simply for shopping at places you already frequent.
Tips for using cashback apps
Never allow yourself to be sold to
It’s only a saving if you were going to buy the thing anyway.
If you have bought something because of an offer that popped up, and you really didn’t need the thing, then all you’ve done is spend money.
Cashback apps work best for you when you use them to shop for the stuff you’re buying anyway, whether that be a holiday or your weekly grocery shop.
Layer your apps
Some of these cashback apps can be used together to get extra money off your purchases!
For example, if you were to buy something at Argos you could first of all click through the store via your TopCashback account.
Then use a card linked to your Airtime Rewards app to make your purchase. This should mean you get money into both accounts.
Waiting can be frustrating
Don’t bank on cashback sites giving you quick cash. Sometimes you can wait weeks and weeks for your cashback to come through.
Some apps are better than others. For example JamDoughnut has always paid me within a day of reaching the 1000 points threshold.
TopCashback has taken months in some cases to pay me.
Need more help earning extra cash? Check out these ways to make money online.