Drivers across the nation are dreading their next trip to the gas station. With fuel prices soaring over $5 a gallon and continuing to rise, vehicle owners are paying substantially more for a full tank than they did just a year ago.
Now couldn't be a better time to jump on cash back apps and rewards programs that can help drivers save at the pumps.
Cash back Apps and Rewards Programs to Save on Gas
Cash back apps are popular in the retail and grocery space. But many of them work just as well for gas purchases. Generally, drivers must pay at the pump up front and receive cash or rewards points once the purchase is confirmed. Although it's not an immediate saving at the pump, the rewards allow users to direct their savings to other expense areas such as grocery and retail shopping.
The following are the best apps and rewards programs to help drivers save money on gas purchases.
1. Cashback Apps
Fetch Rewards is a free cashback app that users can download from Google Play or Apple App stores on their mobile phones. Once a gas purchase is made, simply scan the receipt, and a percentage will be rewarded as points. Users may scan paper receipts or upload a digital copy. The more receipts users scan or upload, the more points users receive.
With Fetch Rewards, 1,000 points are equal to $1. A minimum balance of 3,000 points is required before the account can be redeemed for gift cards, and there are $3 gift cards available. The easiest way to hit 3,000 points is by giving friends and family your referral code. Referrals give anywhere from 2000 to 4000 points, depending on the current special offers. Make sure to use a referral code when you sign up too.
Purchase gift cards for your shopping needs at major retailers like Target, Walmart, and Amazon, or grab some coffee at Starbucks. Drivers can also save up for prepaid Visa cards and use them directly at gas stations.
The company rebranded to Upside from GetUpside in early 2022. It's another free cash back app that allows users to collect rewards points and eventually redeem them for gift cards and cash payments.
Users can search within the area they choose for gas stations partnered with Upside to offer users a discount. Users must select the ‘claim' button and fill gas within the next four hours, or else they must submit a receipt as proof of purchase.
Drivers can get cash back at more than 45,000 locations across the U.S. Upside claims that drivers can save up to 25 cents a gallon, but user reviews vary on the actual savings.
2. Gas Price Reporting Apps
GasBuddy is also a free app and one of the most popular gas apps. GasBuddy directs drivers to nearby locations with the lowest gas prices by simply inputting a zip code or enabling a mobile's location services. GasBuddy uses real-time, crowdsourced prices at more than 150,000 gas station convenience stores in the U.S., Canada, and Australia.
Unlike GasBuddy, which mainly relies on crowdsourced information, Gas Guru data comes from the Oil Price Information Service (OPIS), a fuel-pricing service firm. Gas prices with Gas Guru may be more up-to-date than the gas apps that rely on crowdsourcing.
3. Gas Station Rewards Programs
Previously, only grocery stores would offer loyalty programs that would allow customers to save money on gas. Now gas stations themselves have started offering their own rewards programs to customers.
The BPme Rewards app gives drivers using BP and Amoco gas stations a 5-cent discount per gallon for the first month of use. To continue the 5-cent deal, users must spend a minimum of $100 on fuel each calendar month.
Exxon Mobile Rewards+
Exxon uses a points system and awards 3 cents in points per gallon on gas purchases. Points can also be earned from car washes and attached convenience store purchases. ‘Frequent Fillers' who pump 100 or more gallons a month make an additional 1 cent per gallon. Every 100 points earned is equal to a $1 discount.
Shell Fuel Rewards
The Shell rewards program is a two-tier system. Silver Status saves drivers 3 cents per gallon on fuel purchases, and Gold Status saves drivers 5 cents a gallon. Drivers new to the rewards program will instantly start with Gold Status. To maintain that level, drivers must fill up six times with at least five gallons every three months.
4. Gas Reward Cards
Credit cards are often another reliable way to earn reward points and cash back or credits on statements. Look for the cards that provide the highest cash back on gas.
PenFed Platinum Rewards Visa Signature Card
The PenFed Visa card offers the most cash back at gas stations, with 5x the points per dollar spent for gas purchases. There is no annual fee, and they give a welcome bonus of 15,000 points if users spend $1,500 in the first three months from opening the account.
PNC Cash Rewards Visa
The PNC Visa card offers a 4% cash back at gas stations. There is no annual fee and a welcome bonus of $100 for purchases made of $1.000 or more within the first three billing cycles. Users should note, however, that the combined purchases of gas, dining and grocery store bonus cash back of 4%is limited to the first $8,000 spent. After that, the cash back rate drops to 1%.
Check Out Other Rewards Programs
There are many other rewards programs available. Seek them out, and make scanning receipts and collecting points through apps and cards a part of your daily routine when making any eligible purchase. Hopefully, the rewards will add up and provide much-needed relief from pump pain.
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