• Christina

My 4 Favorite FREE Phone Apps!

Ok, so this post is meant to be very practical and informative. These are four of the apps that I use the MOST on my phone and what I love about them.

I actually just finished reading a book called "12 Ways Your Phone Is Changing You" and I highly recommend it! It talked all about the good, the bad, and the ugly of smart phones and how they affect us. Conclusion: Although there are negative affects, there are some really good uses for the smart phone. Some of those for me are the ones listed below. They have all saved me time and money or helped me learn. I think that all of these apps work on iPhones and Android phones.

1. Ibotta- This is an AWESOME couponing app that has saved me $175 in the past couple years! I use it to get Starbucks gifts cards, because that is one of my little joys in life:)

To signup: https://ibotta.com/r/achwfqg

For me, what attracted me to this app is that it is like couponing, but without having to clip things and keep track of papers with expiration dates. Who has time for that?! :P Here's how it works. After you download the app, you choose a store, like Walmart, and it will show you a list of all the deals from that store (photo below). You choose all the things that you plan to buy or have already purchased. Then you scan the QR code on your receipt and it automatically knows what things match on the list. It takes a few minutes and then you get the money added to your account! Just like that! Once you get to $20, you can redeem the money for a gift card.

Here is an example of some of the gift cards you can get. This is an old photo, so all of these now have a $20 minimum. You can also get cards for places like Target, iTunes, Movie Theaters, or even just have it transferred straight to your PayPal. There are a lot of stores on the list!

What I love:

1. Super easy to use

2. Money accumulates quickly

3. There are lots of extra bonuses you can earn

4. The app tends to give you rebates on things you buy a lot.

What I don't like:

*The one thing I don't like about this app is that occasionally I have purchased something just because there was a coupon for it. To save this from happening, I will not even look at the app til I come back from the store. I am then pleasantly surprised at what I get money back on.

2. Walmart- Ok, so this app is pretty obvious what it is. Walmart is my favorite grocery store, as I have found most all of the prices to be lower on basic items. The only thing that grocery stores do better are sales. Cue the Walmart app...

To signup: https://savingscatcher.walmart.com/dashboard

There are several things on the Walmart app that are helpful. First, they now have free 2 day shipping, just like Amazon! You can also do Grocery Pickup, where you order that day and just pick it up later. Pretty amazing! But, my favorite thing on the Walmart app is Savings Catcher. It does price match for you!! I have a few pictures below to show you where to find it and what it looks like. Every time you shop at Walmart, you just scan the QR code on your receipt and it checks all the stores in your area for better deals. If it finds a lower price at a grocery store, it gives you back the difference. It automatically moves the difference over to your Walmart Pay. You can then use that money when you shop at Walmart next time. We like to save ours all year and then use it as Christmas money. Whatever you do, it is an awesome way to get deals without having to shop at 5 different grocery stores.

What I love:

1. Very easy- little to no work

2. I don't have to shop around at multiple stores but can still get those deals

3. It is a great way to get a discount on my next Walmart purchase or save for Christmas

What I don't like:

*The only thing I don't like is if I shop in an area with not many stores, I don't really get much back. If I shop in a large city, it compares it to many more stores, so I always get more back if I'm visiting a bigger city.

3. Goodreads- This app is a great way to keep track of everything you're reading, as well as what you want to read in the future.

To signup: www.goodreads.com

If you're like me, I tend to start reading books and never finish them because I don't even remember where I was in them. Also, I hear about good books a lot and think that I would love to read them, but five minutes later I have completely forgotten about them. This app has helped me so much with both of those things! Not a lot to say about this app because it is so simple. If you love reading or want to read more, this is something you will want to check out.

What I love:

1. It motivates me to read much more than before

2. It gives me one place to keep track of all my books at once (I even have a list for the kids of books to read to them someday)

3. I don't loose my place in books anymore

4. I can create a reading challenge to help me read more

5. I can see reviews and recommendations from friends and others before I read books

*Can't think of anything I don't like about this app:)

4. Hiku- This is a great shopping app for the whole family to use! If you are always forgetting to buy things at the store when you run out, this will provide a solution. I live far from the store, so this app has saved me a lot of time and money from forgetting things.

To signup: http://hiku.us

(disclaimer on this one: you will need to scroll to the bottom of the page to get to the app itself. Hiku is also a little button you can stick on your fridge, and anytime someone in the house runs out of something, just scan it or say the item and it adds it to your shopping list. I got this button for a Christmas gift a few years ago and it's awesome, but I'm talking about the free app today. You DO NOT need the button to use the app.)

The awesome thing about this app is that everyone in your family who has a device can sync to the same shopping list. So, for instance, my husband can be headed to the store and I can still be adding things to the shopping list as he drives or shops. I love how we both have the same app with the same list at all times. I am a big fan of writing things on paper, but it's much harder to have a good shopping list if I just have it written in a planner somewhere that no one else can get to it. If someone else knows we ran out of something, it probably will not make it to my list :D. Here are some pictures of the app and I will add a few more perks below.

What I love:

1. It automatically divides my items into category

2. It syncs with my husband's phone

3. I can make lots of different lists for various stores or events

4. I can cross off each item as I get it, but they stay at the bottom of the list with a line through them until I delete them

*can't think of anything negative about this one either!

There are lots of other awesome apps that I love, but these are ones I always download immediately when I get a new phone (like this week when my toddler dropped my phone in the toilet :P). I hope these are helpful to you too! I would love to hear about apps that YOU love as well. Comment and tell me about them so I can check them out!

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