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Is the Ibotta Smart Phone App a Scam?

Updated on April 12, 2014
How to use the Ibotta App.
How to use the Ibotta App. | Source

Ibotta is one of several rebate apps that offers incentives and cash if you buy certain products. Unlike some apps like Checkout 51, it does not limit you to just buying groceries. Rebates are available for

  • Grocery Stores
  • Restaurants
  • Health and Beauty Items
  • Electronics Purchases
  • Pet Products
  • Home Improvement Items
  • Babies/Kids Items
  • Movie Theater Purchases

This app is available for download on android and iphones and it is the real deal. I have already been able to cash out my savings right into my bank account and you can do it too.

How Much Am I Going To Save?

How much you will make in rebates off the Ibotta app will greatly vary based on the products available and what you and your family buy. But because there is no obligation and it is free, you can just open up the app and check what is available that week and match any rebates to products or services that you were planning to purchase anyway.

The app currently only requires $5.00 for cash out and can transfer the money to a paypal account. It has been featured on network TV on shows such as the Today Show. Since there is no obligation to try it, it is a good idea to download it and see if it will work for you.

Click thumbnail to view full-size
Go to the app store.Choose the Ibotta app.Choose to install the app.Sign up and then you are ready to go.
Go to the app store.
Go to the app store. | Source
Choose the Ibotta app.
Choose the Ibotta app. | Source
Choose to install the app.
Choose to install the app. | Source
Sign up and then you are ready to go.
Sign up and then you are ready to go. | Source

How To Download the Ibotta App

In order to download the Ibotta App you will need to find it in your App store or if you are currently using a smart phone you can go here. The Ibotta app is free to download and use so you can always just delete it if you decide that you don't like.

For my Android phone I simply went to the Play Store and typed in "Ibotta" into the search box. The first app with the pink box icon is the correct one.

After you click on it choose "install."

Signing Up

There are three ways to sign up for an account:

  • Facebook
  • Google+
  • Email

Any of these methods will get you signed up and allow you to set your location for the rebates available in your area.

There is a new way to coupon.
There is a new way to coupon. | Source

How To Use the Ibotta App

To use the Ibotta app follow these simple instructions.


  1. Go to the main screen
  2. Click on the category that you are interested in.
  3. Choose the product or service for details.
  4. Click on the offer to gather the details.
  5. Perform the tasks (circles) at the bottom of the offer to get your total savings.


Click thumbnail to view full-size
On the main page choose the product or service you are interested in.From the details pick the restaurant or product.Click on the logo of the product.Notice at the bottom that the circles represent rebates.  In order to open these I will have to click on them and perform the task.Here I'm reading a fact about Burger King.Notice that twenty five cents of my rebate is now unlocked.From the main screen choose Redeem and then Verify items.  Only choose the ones on the particular receipt you are scanning in.Check off the items you are redeeming.Take a picture of the full receipt from top to bottom.
On the main page choose the product or service you are interested in.
On the main page choose the product or service you are interested in. | Source
From the details pick the restaurant or product.
From the details pick the restaurant or product. | Source
Click on the logo of the product.
Click on the logo of the product. | Source
Notice at the bottom that the circles represent rebates.  In order to open these I will have to click on them and perform the task.
Notice at the bottom that the circles represent rebates. In order to open these I will have to click on them and perform the task. | Source
Here I'm reading a fact about Burger King.
Here I'm reading a fact about Burger King. | Source
Notice that twenty five cents of my rebate is now unlocked.
Notice that twenty five cents of my rebate is now unlocked. | Source
From the main screen choose Redeem and then Verify items.  Only choose the ones on the particular receipt you are scanning in.
From the main screen choose Redeem and then Verify items. Only choose the ones on the particular receipt you are scanning in. | Source
Check off the items you are redeeming.
Check off the items you are redeeming. | Source
Take a picture of the full receipt from top to bottom.
Take a picture of the full receipt from top to bottom. | Source

Note: Tasks may include watching a video, taking a poll or learning a fact. They are usually fast and easy and not really invasive.


After you have bought the product or service choose "Redeem" from the bottom of the main Ibotta screen.


  1. Verify which item's rebates you want to redeem. If it is a grocery product you may be asked to scan the bar code.
  2. Submit the receipt by using the phone camera to take a picture of the full receipt.
  3. Then choose submit and wait for a verification notice or email to confirm acceptance.

It's really that easy.

Common Issues With the Ibotta App

Just like any app, some users have reported issues with it including not receiving the rebate that they thought that they should receive. Unfortunately, these issues are usually user errors. Here are some of the common issues.

  • Blurry Pictures
  • Not Taking Picture of Full Receipt
  • Lack of Barcode
  • Buying the Wrong Product

Here's some ideas for making sure that these problems don't happen to you.

Problem
Solution
Blurry Picture
Inspect your picture right after you take it. If it is blurry choose the retake button located on that part of the app.
Not Getting in the Full Receipt
Make sure you start at the top and scan all the way to the bottom. The app gives you options to add sections if you have a longer receipt.
Not saving products that need a bar code
If you are buying a grocery product the verify button may ask you to scan the UPC. Don't throw away the product's container until you have done this.
Buying the wrong product
Read the details of the offer quickly before you purchase to make sure you are buying the correct product or service.
Out of date
Check the date of your receipt against the rebate offer and make sure that they are in compliance.
Common issues with Ibotta

Turn Off Location Notifications/ Alerts

Some users have complained that the app has too many alerts and notifications. For example, if you are near a grocery store where there are rebates, it will send a note saying "Why not stop in and get some savings at Store X while you are here?"

It is not hard to turn off those kinds of notifications.

  • Go to the bottom of the home screen on the Ibota App:
  • Choose: More
  • Settings
  • Notifications

Then just uncheck the notifications you no longer want to receive on your phone. It will not stop the app from working. It will just stop the pop ups.

You SmartPhone is the key to savings.
You SmartPhone is the key to savings. | Source

New Way To Coupon

Using the Ibotta app is a new way to coupon and receive cash right in your paypal and bank account without too much hassle. With a little bit of planning and thought, your savings will add up quickly.

Ibotta is also safe to use in conjunction with other coupons, other coupon apps, sales and promotions.

If you have a smart phone, you may want to give Ibotta a try.

What do you think of the Ibotta App?

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    • LCDWriter profile image
      Author

      L C David 3 years ago from Florida

      I think it just depends on the week sometimes. I don't purchase things I wasn't plan on buying, but when I can get back a dollar or two I figure why not? Thanks for your thoughts.

    • Helena Ricketts profile image

      Helena Ricketts 3 years ago from Indiana

      I use the app on occasion but just wish that they had more healthy options. All of the food items available are conventional processed foods so we usually skip it. It's a great concept and a great app it just needs a healthier selection of rebates on foods.

      Great hub! It thoroughly explains the app. Thanks!

    • bravewarrior profile image

      Shauna L Bowling 3 years ago from Central Florida

      Interesting. I don't have a smartphone so I'm not hip to all the apps out there. Pretty cool! I'm a coupon clipper. Guess I'll just have to stick to scissors and my coupon envelope for now!

    • LCDWriter profile image
      Author

      L C David 3 years ago from Florida

      I like Checkout 51 but it is only for groceries. And it has a higher thresh hold to cash out than Ibotta. You can use both, sometimes with the same receipt.

    • Hady Chahine profile image

      Hady Chahine 3 years ago from Manhattan Beach

      Interesting subject to write about. Until now I had not heard of Ibotta, but I will definitely take a look at this money saving opportunity. What's your opinion of Checkout 51? ~ Thanks for sharing.