A blog about gardening, canning, quilting, family, saving money, and product reviews

Friday, August 29, 2014

Things you can do to save money at the store RIGHT NOW!

As many of you know, I have been on a money-saving and freebie-taking kick. Where we used to live, this was A LOT harder to do, there were only two stores to go grocery shopping at (and therefore only one store that our dear old WalMart would actually price match at), and there were never any killer sales, and we didn't have coupons to come by easily.

So, as I've been meddling in this crazy money-saving adventure, I have found a few phone applications that can get you started. All four of the following apps are very user friendly, and they all work slightly differently, so I'm just going to give you a bit of a rundown of each one.

Here goes!

Checkout 51

Download this app! And then, once you have, go ahead and open it. I believe I had to enter some basic account information, and then I was brought to a list. This is the list of goods you can get rebates on at the grocery store with this program during that time frame. If you click on any one item in the list, it will give you more information as to the specifics of what is eligible for the rebate. For instance, some of the starter items are bananas, when you click on bananas, you see a recipe for using bananas, it'll say any brand any amt, and at the bottom it'll give you a date and time as to when you have to purchase the bananas and upload the receipt in order to claim the rebate. But most of them are more specific, like today I see "Dole Pineapple Juice." This includes any CANNED variety, but excludes chilled or frozen varieties. Mine states that the item must be purchased and the receipt uploaded between yesterday and September 3, 2014.

So, that's great, a program tells you that you can get rebates, but how do you do it? Well, simple. Go ahead and buy the items you wish to purchase and then log into checkout51. Checkout 51 will ask you to scan your receipt that you would like to claim rebates on, using the camera on your phone. It'll ask you to keep the receipt between the lines it makes on your phone screen, and then you can focus and scan a picture. You can add more to the receipt if it doesn't all fit. The great thing about checkout51 is the receipt can be from any store, it is not store specific at all. Make sure the pictures of the receipts include the date and time, or the rebate may not process correctly. After you are done, Checkout 51 is going to bring you to another screen. It's a list of all the rebate items again, and here it will ask you what all is on the receipt that you are claiming rebates on. Click on the items and continue. At this time your receipt will go to processing. They have to make sure that the items you clicked are actually on that receipt. It doesn't take terribly long and you will get an email stating whether the rebate went through or not. If it does, the money is put into your Checkout 51 account.

Now, Checkout 51 requires you to get to $20 before you cash out. And you have to physically tell the program you would like to cash out, this is not automated. When you request a cash out, they will send you a check for the balance of what is on your Checkout51 account. Super simple.

Moving on.


Program #2 is Ibotta. Ibotta IS store-specific. This means that you can go in, check out what rebates are offered at a specific store, and then go shopping. If you are not a hundred percent sure whether an item you intend on purchasing counts towards the rebate, you can unlock the rebate (take a survey, view a website, learn a fact, etc) and then "verify" the product by scanning the barcode on the product. In fact, Ibotta is going to MAKE you do this with every single item before scanning the receipt. Once you have verified the items, scan the receipt just like you did in the previous program, and wait. The receipt must have the store name on it, and you must scan the whole receipt including the date and time. If you don't get it all, they will deny it and make you do it al over again.

Ibotta will allow you to cash out at $5.00 and will send it straight to your paypal account or turn it into a gift card (limited on selection depending on the day). Again, you have to tell the program you want to cash out and you have to specify how you want to cash out. Super simple!



Shopmium has the least rebates it seems, but they are usually pretty decent dollar amounts. Right now there is a rebate on Noosa yogurts, and it's $1 for an 8 ounce container. Paired with a deal at King Soopers recently (2/$3) this would have made the Noosa cheaper than your regular everyday yogurt, and it's super good (Noosa, please read this and send me tons of your rhubarb yogurt, thanks ;)). Shopmium does not appear to care what store you buy the product from in most cases (and if it does, it will specify on the offer itself when you click on it). You click on the product you are buying, and you will get a screen that says "Discover this product," click "Discover this product" and more information will come up. You will get the rebate amount, a description, a product locator (where can this product be found near you), a scanner (to verify the product you would like to purchase is included), and a button to request your rebate. When you go to request the rebate, the program is going to also have you scan the barcode to verify, and then you will go through the whole receipt scanning business again. Shopmium does not require you to request a cash out. Therefore, as soon as the request for rebate is done processing, the amount will go straight into your paypal or bank account. Shopmium will also give you credit and free chocolate for referrals. I love chocolate, so please enter the following code when you join Shopmium


*shamless* I really do love chocolate :)

And the final app, which is relatively new, and gaining popularity quickly is

The Walmart App

You might already have this one. Have you noticed your walmart receipts now have a special scannable code on the bottom (looks kinda like a splotchy square). Yup, that's a savings catcher code. What's a saving's catcher? Well, basically, Walmart will scan the receipt for about 72 hours to see if any other store in your area has a better deal (you know, like price matching AFTER the fact), and it will tally up how much they figure they over-charged you based on that fact, and they will offer the amount back to you in an e-gift card that can be used on-line or in-stores (according to my app, I have money sitting there but was going to let it accrue a bit before asking for a gift card). This is great, because this is all the savings you missed as you spent hours going through other store ads, collecting your receipts, calculating your rebates (you are spending like...about 20 hours a week doing this right?!?!?!? hahaha I kid I kid). I love it because I have, up until now, been terrible at making WalMart price match. Why? Because being newer to a big area with lots of stores, it's a new thing for me. Remember, back in Podunkville Walmart was like the only place to shop...and there was nobody I could ask them to match the price of. So, I'm getting used to it, but until I'm perfect, Savings Catcher is going to catch what I missed. I cannot tell you how ecstatic I was to check my email one day and find that Walmart had found $8.02 in over charges that they want me to take back. Thanks WalMart!

In the future I would like to talk more about couponing, and organizing your shopping trip, and resources I have found for feeding a family on the cheap. But for now, I'm going to leave you with these 4 apps. Download them, get used to them, make them your ....hmmm...I can't use the word here, you fill in the blank ________________.

Til next time,


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