At a stay at home mother, I'm always looking for little ways to make a few dollars in the course of my usual activities. Couponing, is of course, the old standard but the forward march of technology has added a number of smartphone apps that promise savings or cash back when used in conjunction with your everyday shopping habits.
Receipt Hog is the newest of these that I have installed. Although it has been around for a while for the iPhone, it is a relative newcomer to the Android platform and, based upon online reviews, appears to be a pared-down version of the original iPhone release. The app itself is free, and cash-outs are available via Paypal or Amazon gift card.
Unlike Jingit, Ibotta, and Endorse, you don't have to purchase specific products to qualify. It was this feature that caught my attention, because I find those other apps and couponing in general of limited use based on the way I feed my family. To get the most from them I would have to buy products that I would otherwise pass up, and there is little value in that. But to earn with Receipt Hog, all you have to do is snap photos of your receipts. It doesn't matter where you shop, as long as it is a grocery store or other store that sells groceries (such as CVS, Dollar General, or Target).
The basic function of the app is extremely simple - photograph your receipts in their entirety, upload them, and earn points. The in-app camera takes some getting used to because of the way it processes longer receipts that require several photos, but otherwise the interface is very straightforward and user friendly.
As with other apps that boast savings or cash back, earning is slow. A $5 cash-out requires 1000 coins, and coins are earned based on receipt totals with small receipts earning 5 coins and lengthy ones earning 20 points. There is also a slot-machine style in-app game that can add a few extra points to your total. Spins are earned based on referrals and by uploading larger receipts. Uploading receipts for five consecutive weeks also earns a bonus called "hog wild", which earns a bonus spin for each receipt uploaded.
After three weeks of using the app I have just 250 points - one-quarter of the way to my first cash-out. But to earn those points, I have spent perhaps 5 minutes total using the app, so the slow earning pace doesn't discourage me the way it can with other apps that require more time and effort. And while I'm certainly not going to get rich using this app, a few dollars here and there for as little effort as it takes to submit receipts makes it feel like this one is worth sticking with.