Frugal Fridays: Earning Cash & Gift Cards

Want to earn some extra cash? Try these apps to earn gift cards toward purchases. Bonus: Free E-book from a Major Financial Adviser
Want to earn some extra cash? Try these apps to earn gift cards toward purchases. Bonus: Free E-book from a Major Financial Adviser

Want a way to earn a little extra cash and gift cards, especially for the holidays?  Here are a few apps I’m using to earn gift cards and credits towards Google Play.


Perk comes with a few different apps you should download.  First, you’ll need to download Perk Wallet. This is the app that will serve as the source where you can pool all of your points together from the various Perk apps to use them towards gift cards or cash.  (Please note, as of now, there have been complaints about using the points to cash out, there are no complaints re: gift cards.  Until the issue with cashing out is resolved, use all Perk apps for gift cards only.)

After downloading the Perk Wallet app, you’ll need a few apps with which to earn points (green tokens) that you can save up to use towards gift cards.  There’s Perklinko, Perk Scratch & Win, Perk TV, and Perk Word Search to name a few.  My favorite is the Perk Scratch & Win.  All of the games are fairly simple to use.

In a get rich quick scheme world that we live in, many of you are going to be impatient and want to rack up as many points as you can as quickly as you can so you can get your rewards.  Don’t waste your time doing this.

My strategy has been to play each day until I reach 50 points.  After that, I turn off the game, because I have better things to do.  The goal is to save the points to use at Christmastime, so I’m not in any rush to get anything now.  It’s the equivalent of putting a little bit of savings away for the holidays.  That’s roughly 1500 points a month…maybe more if I hit a jackpot of 100-1000 points (which has happened).

PROS: Win points to cash in for prizes.  Easy to use.  Games can be a lot of fun.  Good way to come up with some extra money to purchase holiday gifts.

CONS: Takes a long time to rack up enough points for a good prize. Cash out has a lot of issues (stick to gift card option).  A lot of ads.

BONUS: Get 50 bonus points when you sign up to PERK by using the code: 75c0b672.


Google Opinion Rewards is a good way to rack up some money to use toward purchases on Google Play.  It’s great to use towards games, books and movies.  All you have to do is take surveys as they become available.  You are only rewarded a few cents each time, but it can quickly turn into enough money to purchase items at Google Play.  In the first week of using the app, I was able to generate a little over $10.

PROS: Free money to use towards Google Play.  Surveys are short.

CONS: Only awarded a few cents per survey.  Takes a while to rack up enough money to purchase items on Google Play.

The Panel App is a good way to earn points for gift cards by taking short surveys.  You can save up your points towards gift cards, or you can use the points towards sweepstakes for bigger prizes.

PROS: Free gift cards.

CONS: Takes a while to accumulate points.


My favorite financial adviser, David Bach, is now coming out with an updated version of his book “The Automatic Millionaire.”  BUT good news!  You can get it for free on his site.  Even if you’ve read it already, you can also download a free copy of his e-book “Finish Rich Quickstart System.”  It’s a good way to refresh your finances.

In all honesty, I think the last time I refreshed my financial records was the last time I read “The Automatic Millionaire.”  This little refresher is a good reason to go through and update your financial records, reassess your goals, and plan for your future.  Things have changed since the last book, especially for me, so this was a nice refresher.


The trick to all of these apps is to remember that this is like creating passive income.  It will take a while to earn those gift cards.  But keep at it.  Spend a few minutes a day on each app and then turn it off.  Take the surveys as they come up.  If an app isn’t working for you, try something else.

For those using the Perk Scratch & Win, the trick to winning coins and points faster is to use the scratch off that costs the most (1,000 coins per game).  You win bigger in those games.  If you’re low on coins, play the free scratch offs (one of the three that is for gift cards/prizes).  Play until you get enough coins and then switch to the bigger payout scratch offs.

On Sundays, Google Play tends to offer a lot of surveys.  It won’t always alert you, so go into the app and right above the dollar amount that shows your Google Play credit, it will say there are surveys available.  Just keep clicking until there are no more.  I earned $9 one Sunday over the course of 5 minutes.

Also another major hint: try and share the apps.  You get more points when you share and others join.