Ebates has been around for years, but I honestly didn’t begin using it frequently until recently. What is it? It’s a cash back shopping portal that pays you for the shopping that you’re already going to do. That means if you’re an online shopper like most of the world, you can receive money back from purchases you make. Ebates offers cash back for over 2,000 stores and the best part is that it’s free. You just go to ebates and sign up, find the store you want to shop at, click the link to the store, and make your purchase. While the percentage of your cash back amount varies, the point is why not save that money by doing virtually nothing? So, what does this have to do with travel? Well, I think it’s the #1 way to easily and effortlessly save hundreds of dollars on travel. Heres how.
Let’s say you want to book a trip to my favorite city on earth, Paris, France. You see a 6 day, $699 package on Groupon and you book without hesitation. (This is a real deal by the way and totally normal for Groupon). Now you’ve already saved HUNDREDS on that trip, but with ebates, you can save more. If you went to groupon from the ebates site, you’d see the they offer 6% cash back on their goods/services AND on their getaways (vacations). So this $699 trip, or $1,398 trip assuming you’re booking for two people, will technically cost $1,314 all from simply clicking through a link that offers 6% cash back. If you want to up the ante and do a full on 16 day European tour, visiting several cities for $1,499 ($2,998 for two), you’d end up getting over $179 cash back. This is all for using ebates to book a trip you were already going to book.
Let’s stray from Groupon and I’ll give an even better example. If you’re like me and shop around for a flight deal, then you’ve heard of Expedia. They happen to offer up to 10% cash back when shopping through the ebates portal. So that $800 flight gets you $80 cash back. Booked a $1,500 trip? Get $150 effortlessly. Here’s a full list of their travel section stores that you can shop through.
Ebates isn’t just a travelers best friend. If you shop online period then you should be using this website. Even if you’re just spending $30 at gap.com, that’s 30 bucks you can get 2% cash back on. Don’t literally throw away money.
MAJOR KEY ALERT
I have had an ebates account for years but would always forget to use it. I would make an online purchase and then end up kicking myself because I forgot to go through ebates first. It’s like developing a habit. Here’s a tip on NEVER FORGETTING to utilize ebates. Simply install the browser widget that reminds you to activate the cash back feature. Whenever you visit a website that offers cash back, a notification pops up right on your screen to activate the feature and you’re guaranteed your cash back once you make a purchase. This is a surefire way to always get your cash back whether or not it’s on your brain. Download the widget here.
If you’re paying for anything online and not using ebates, you’re potentially missing out on not hundreds in savings, but hundreds of your cold, hard cash right back in your pocket. Don’t be that person. There’s nothing wrong with enjoying your money in your bank account.
Be sure to check out my travel must haves!