Looking for a little extra cash? The internet is a gold mine of websites where you can earn free gift cards by completing surveys online, or get cash back on your purchases. Some retailers also offer free gift cards for a purchase or referral.
Check out these options:
Branded Surveys is a website where anyone can create a profile, take surveys, and earn cash. The more details you provide about yourself, the more surveys you may be eligible for (you’ll receive email notifications when a survey fits your profile).
The surveys are provided by market research firms on behalf of Fortune 500 companies. When you complete a survey, you’ll earn points to turn into cash — $5 for every 500 points earned.
The Ibotta app lets users earn cash back when you shop in store or online at top national retailers. Ibotta offers cash back for your entire purchase or for individual products.
There are multiple ways to earn through Ibotta.
- Submit a photo of your receipt to get cash back on qualifying purchases.
- Link loyalty accounts for your favorite retailers in the Ibotta app. When you use those linked loyalty accounts at checkout, your purchases will be linked to qualifying offers so you can get cash back.
Another option is to buy a gift card and instantly get up to 10% cash back on the entire amount. New members can also get $5 when they spend $15 in gift cards.
InboxDollars is a reward website with multiple ways to earn:
- Take paid online surveys. Each one takes 3-25 minutes to complete and pays between $0.50 to $5, or sometimes $10-20.
- Play games. InboxDollars has its own games, plus games from GSN Casino — for every dollar you spend, you’ll earn 18% cash back.
- Go online shopping. Earn cash back or get samples and discounts from top brands.
- Read emails. Receive InboxDollars offers in your inbox and get cash for reading them.
- Enjoy grocery rewards. Get access to cash back deals on supermarket products, or earn money for scanning receipts.
Brands pay InboxDollars for consumer input, then InboxDollars pays you.
Swagbucks, which offers a $10 signup bonus, gives you free gift cards and cash for the everyday things you do online. You’ll earn points by doing things like:
- Shopping online
- Playing video games
- Searching the web
- Answering surveys
- Finding great deals
Then, you can redeem those points for gift cards to retailers such as Amazon and Walmart. You can also sign up to get cash back via PayPal.
Similar to Swagbucks, MyPoints also offers a $10 signup bonus. This website lets you earn points by shopping at your favorite stores. You can also take polls and answer surveys to get gift cards — and you’ll still get a bonus even if you don’t qualify for a survey. Some surveys pay as much as $50.
With MyPoints, you’ll get up to 40% back on every purchase from 2,000 top retailers, including Walmart, Best Buy, Home Depot, and Amazon. You’ll also be able to access and use the latest sales, coupons, promo codes, and deals at these stores.
Honey gathers good deals from around the Internet. Once you create an account and start shopping, you can earn points on your purchases. Then redeem those points for cash, gift cards, or PayPal shopping credits.
You’ll need to download Honey’s Chrome browser extension (available for desktop and for mobile iOS15 with the Honey app) and activate cash back to ensure your purchases qualify.
Get paid to take surveys with Survey Junkie by building your profile, completing surveys that are a match, and earning virtual points. You can redeem these points for a PayPal cashout or for e-gift cards.
You can choose whether to only participate in the core Survey Junkie community, which offers surveys for attitudinal-based market research (research that gauges your attitude toward a product or brand), or participate in the SJ Pulse Community, which features behavioral market research (provides insights on consumer behavior to improve a product or product presentation).
Fetch Rewards has a free app where you can earn points on any receipt from any store or restaurant (as long as the receipt is from the past 14 days). Once you’ve scanned an image of your receipt, you can earn rewards, including gift cards.
Each scan typically earns you about five points. You’ll earn $1 for every 1,000 points you accumulate. Gift cards are available in multiple denominations from retailers like Walmart and Amazon.
The Amazon Trade-In program allows customers to receive an Amazon gift card in exchange for devices like Kindle readers, cell phones, and video games. Amazon recycles or re-sells these old devices and rewards you with a gift card, as well as 25% off a new qualifying Amazon device.
To participate, answer some questions about your device to make sure it’s eligible for the program. Then ship the item using a prepaid shipping label. Within 10 days, Amazon will verify the item’s condition and apply a gift card balance to your account.
Download the free ShopKick app to get points (called “kicks”) when you walk into a partner store, scan the barcode on select products, or make a purchase. You can also earn points by shopping online (at certain stores) and by watching videos in the ShopKick app.
Once your “kicks” have added up, redeem these points for digital gift cards from certain retailers — such as Starbucks, Target, Ulta Beauty, and Amazon.
11. Credit card rewards
You may be able to earn cash back rewards when you use your credit card, depending on where and when you shop at different types of retailers. These are a few examples:
- Wells Fargo Active Cash card — 2% cash back
- Citi Custom Cash card — 1-5% cash back
- Blue Cash Preferred from American Express — 1-6% cash back
Credit cards typically change rewards retailers every three months, so keep an eye out for any updates from your company.
PrizeRebel gives you access to thousands of online opinion surveys from market research companies. You’ll complete surveys at your leisure to earn points, which you can trade in for rewards like gift cards from Amazon, eBay, Apple, Google, and other brands.
99% of PrizeRebel gift cards are delivered digitally within five minutes. The site offers gift cards starting as low as $5. Since 2007, PrizeRebel has given out $2.5 million in rewards.
13. Opinion Outpost
At Opinion Outpost, you can earn rewards for taking online surveys on different subjects. You’ll get points for every survey you complete (typically 10 points, or $1, per survey), and you’ll receive email alerts when new surveys are available. Survey types include:
- Product tests (review prototypes before they hit the shelf)
- Advert reviews (give feedback on ads before they launch)
- Diary studies (keep track of and share your lifestyle habits)
- Focus groups (take part in group discussions on a variety of topics)
- Location-based services (participate in targeted surveys based on your location)
- Ad survey studies (share your thoughts on ads you see on Google)
When it’s time to cash out, choose from three types of rewards: PayPal cash, a virtual VISA prepaid card, or an Amazon gift card. Opinion Outpost commissions over three million surveys and pays the equivalent of $390,000 to its community each month.
Keep in mind that some rewards (such as for diary studies and focus groups) take up to six weeks to arrive.
14. Survey Club
Established in 2005, Survey Club now has more than 16 million members on six continents who take surveys and earn money. The website connects you with paid research opportunities in your area, such as:
- Online surveys
- Private panels
- Focus groups
- Clinical trials
- In-home usage tests
- Online bulletin boards
- Taste tests
- Mystery shopping studies
After filling out your profile, you can view studies that might be a good fit for you on the “Available Studies” page. Once you’ve completed enough surveys to accumulate $25 in rewards, you can request payment via Amazon gift cards. Other research panels might pay you in cash, gift cards, prepaid debit cards, cash sweepstakes, prize drawings, or charitable contributions.
Dosh gives you automatic cash back at thousands of places when you shop, dine, or book hotels. There’s no need to scan your receipts. Instead, download the Dosh app and link your cards. When you swipe, Dosh deposits cash back into your wallet automatically. Other payment methods, such as Venmo, also provide a cash back option with Dosh.
Once you’ve accumulated $25, you can transfer the money to your bank, PayPal, or Venmo. Or choose to donate your cash to charity. Dash uses bank-level encryption to keep your information safe and does not store any of your credit or banking information.
16. Gift cards from retailers after purchase
Many retailers give you a free gift card for purchasing certain items. Stores that do this include:
- Target — check for promotion details in the weekly ad or Current Promotions page (for example, free $5 gift card when you buy any three eye care products or free $150 gift card when you buy a certain mattress)
- buybuy BABY — get a free goody bag with samples and coupons after creating a registry
- Victoria’s Secret — seasonal offers such as spend $20+, get $20
- Sam’s Club — get a $45 egift card after becoming a member
- L.L. Bean — earn Bean Bucks by shopping at L.L. Bean and elsewhere with the L.L. Bean Mastercard
- Kohl’s — shop during an “earn period” and get $10 Kohl’s Cash for every $50 you spend
Other retailers have seasonal deals for gift cards where you can earn a free gift card by purchasing certain products, a certain dollar amount, or another gift card. Look for these deals in November and December. Just keep in mind that these gift cards sometimes have to be redeemed within a specific period of time.
Trying to earn some extra money and prepare in the event of a recession? Check out these tips:
- What happens in a recession? Here’s what you need to know
- How does a recession affect me? 9 ways your life can be impacted
- 42 recession-proof jobs to keep cash flowing during economic downturn
- 7 recession-proof businesses to start now to earn more money
- How to prepare for a recession and survive in 2023 — 9 things to do now
TopCashback advertises that you can earn over $400 a year by shopping online through thousands of top U.S. brands. When you make a purchase from a retailer featured on TopCashback after clicking through from the site, the retailer gives TopCashback a commission for sending you to their website — and TopCashback gives 100% of this commission to you.
With over 4,400 retailers available, this is a great website to use for things like airport parking, hotel bookings, and car rentals, as well as shopping your favorite fashion, electronics, and home brands.
On the LifePoints website, you can earn rewards for sharing your time and opinions through surveys. Register for free and keep an eye on your inbox to be notified of new surveys. Most surveys take 10-20 minutes to complete. Plus, keep an eye out for weekly giveaways for bonus points or other items.
You can spend your points on rewards such as PayPal vouchers or e-gift certificates from Starbucks, Amazon, and iTunes. LifePoints has paid over $22 million to its members throughout the past year.
19. Refer a friend
Some places offer free gift cards in exchange for customer referrals. A few companies and websites that provide this promotion include:
- Deputy — share your referral link and get a $100 gift card when your friend becomes a paying customer
- Goli Nutrition — get a $10 gift card for every friend you refer
- TaxAct — get a $20 Amazon gift card for every eligible friend that files with TaxAct
- T-Mobile — existing customers can receive a $50 Virtual Express Prepaid MasterCard card for referring friends and family to open new postpaid accounts with T-Mobile
Some credit cards also offer referral bonuses.
Have a gift card you can't use? Where to find a gift exchange kiosk:
After an exhaustive search for gift exchange kiosks in major grocery, pharmacy, and big box stores, we found that there aren’t many still around.
However, you can get cash for your unwanted gift cards through these legit sites that will pay you for your stray gift cards:
Create a free account and get up to 92% of the value of your gift card via check, bank deposit, or PayPal. Most cards don’t require shipping, and there are no fees. Enter your gift card information on the online form, and see what CardCash is willing to pay.
If you accept, payments are processed in 24-48 hours once card details are verified. Choose from hundreds of stores. Gift cards with expiration dates are not accepted.
With a free account, you can sell gift cards from popular brands like Starbucks, Walmart, and Target without fees. If you agree to an offer, you’ll ship your cards with complimentary USPS first class shipping.
ClipKard pays via PayPal or issues a check by mail within 24 hours of receiving your gift cards. Checks take 5-14 days on average to arrive. ClipKard won’t buy e-gift cards, and you can’t sell more than $300 in gift cards within a 15-day period.
Gameflip is a gaming marketplace for selling gift cards from major retailers and game and entertainment brands like Nintendo, PlayStation, Netflix, and Best Buy. You can set your own prices, but Gameflip recommends selling them for up to 15% off.
Once you list your cards, interested buyers will purchase your cards. Payments go to your Gameflip wallet but are held in escrow until the buyer verifies receipt of the gift card code. You can use the money from the sale on Gameflip or send funds to Wise, Payoneer, Skrill, or Bitcoin. These services may charge payout fees.
Get up to 93% of your card’s value by selling it on GiftCash. Enter your card details to view the cash offer. If you accept, you can choose a payout option: ACH deposit to your bank account or cryptocurrency. Both methods charge a small processing fee.
Payouts take 10-15 business days to process (5-10 for Canadian retailers). If you have a gift card with a minimum value of $25, you can sell it through GiftCash. However, Air Canada, Apple/iTunes and Petco require a minimum card value of $100.
If you want to set your own price, Raise provides a marketplace for you to sell unwanted gift cards, whether they’re new or used. Create a free account to list your gift cards for sale.
Raise offers payouts by ACH bank deposit or PayPal. It can take 3-5 business days to process payments. You can sell your cards faster if you offer a competitive price. Just be aware that Raise takes a 15% commission from all gift card sales.
Check out these other free and low-cost resources: