Ah, your trusty smartphone always so loyally by your side. From snapchats of that crazy summer festival to instagram pictures of your meals at the trendiest new restaurants in town. It was there. While your smartphone may be a faithful companion and friend, it can feel like more like a money drainer than a savings tool.
But did you know using some of that data on your phone can actually save you money? Yeah, you heard that right. It’s possible. Make it work for you by using these five apps to find great deals, stick to a budget, and even earn some extra coin.
I can proudly say I was an early adopter to Mint.com, a website and now an app that helps you track your finances, spending and savings. I’ve been using it since 2009 and have loved it ever since. This app determines your financial activity and spending behavior, then visualizes it beautifully with pie charts and graphs, so you can easily see where you can make improvements in your budgeting. It’s free, easy to use, and secure, so no worries about your data being confiscated.
Ever wished you could have a single place you could look for all your online shopping receipts? Opening up your email and scouring for them all can be kind of a pain. Instead, download Slice, a free app that searches your email and stores all your online receipts in one place. However, the app is so much more than receipt storage. It notifies you of the shipping status of all your purchased items and you can even order these statuses by order of importance. But how the app really helps you save money is through its price drop notifications for your recent purchases. This allows you to quickly reach out to the online store and ask for a better deal.
I used to have a friend in high school that would take the trouble of driving around until she found the absolute best price in gas. Not only did it waste a lot of time, it also wasted her gas and money. She could have really used an app like GasBuddy that quickly uses your location and tracks the best prices for gas in the surrounding area. What makes this app more unique is that it brings together other gas price watchers and allows them to compete with each other in challenges. These challenges generally involve informing other GasBuddy users about fuel prices in their area. It’s a fun and painless way to save money on fuel costs.
If you’re a shopaholic then proceed with caution with this app. I had to wean myself off of it because it got so addictive, but in a good way of course. This little app allows you to browse featured products, earn points and get rewards just for shopping at traditional brick-and-mortar stores. You don’t even have to buy anything to earn rewards. You can earn them by simply scanning special items or even walking into the store! Once you’ve earned enough points you can redeem them for rewards to do well…more shopping.
I’m not the best when it comes to car…things. Let alone when it is need of some serious repairs. If you’re anything like me you should download RepairPal, an app that allows you to check the market rate on car repairs so that you don’t get ripped off. Not only does it gives you this already powerful money saving knowledge, it allows you to find a good mechanic in the area, call roadside assistance, and track all your past repairs.
So the next time you grumble when hitting submit on your phone payment, remember that it’s just an investment on a money saving super tool (with the right apps of course).