Friday, March 2, 2018

How I turn my receipts into cash

Now that I'm a wife, I've become more budget conscious and eager to find ways to save and get value for our money.

I downloaded this app called Snapcart (it’s available on iTunes and Google Play Store), which allows you to take photos of your receipts and gives you cash in return.

Read on to learn how!

Snapcart only accepts certain kinds of receipts, like those from supermarkets, drugstores, cosmetic stores, and department stores (for cosmetic purposes). Then depending on the amount on your receipt, you get a cash equivalent.

The app is very easy to use. Once you've downloaded Snapcart, just open the app and create your profile. Read the FAQ section to better familiarize yourself with it, and then, snap away!

When you open the app, it takes you to your dashboard, where you can see your level (mine is Silver), your cashback balance, and the snap button so you can easily take photos of your receipts. The bell on the upper right is for notifications (whether your receipt was accepted) and announcements.

When you want to cash out, just tap on the cash out button. You have the option to give your bank account number and they automatically transfer it to your account, but this has a transaction fee of PHP20. The bank transfer used to take 5-7 working days, but Snapcart just announced that they've made the process shorter.

I was so happy when the transfer came through to my account. I wanted to make sure the app was legit before I recommended it to you guys!

Other cash out options are prepaid phone top up and e-vouchers, but I chose the bank transfer option because that's the most convenient for me. Other users said Snapcart also used to give out Zalora credits, but I guess that was for a limited time only.

You must also remember to snap your receipts within 3 days of purchase or else they will no longer  be accepted. The best thing to do is to snap your receipts every night so you won't forget. I do it whenever I edit our accounting spreadsheet.

You should also make sure you snap clear photos, and take a photo of the entire length and width of the receipt. There’s a button to press when the receipt is long and can’t fit in one snap.

You are only allowed to submit 3 receipts per day, so it's best to divide your receipts in case you've made several purchases.

Here is what my notification page looks like. It takes 1-2 days to know whether your receipt was accepted or not. So you must really snap immediately, because in case your receipt gets rejected, you can snap it again and resubmit before the 3-day window is up.

As you can see in my receipt history, I've had several receipts rejected because the photo was either blurry or the snap was incomplete.

Most of those were also duplicates. When they often rejected a complete snap, I started submitting duplicates to be sure. But fortunately they were able to fix the bug.

It's better to take your photos in the morning and do it with as much natural light as possible.

Another valuable tip is to split your receipts for large purchases, especially at the supermarket. As you can see in the cashback tier of my level (Silver), receipts with total value of PHP2,001 and more has an equivalent cashback of PHP30.00.

So whenever Jay and I do the grocery, I ask the cashier to split the receipt once it reaches PHP2,001. That way I get more receipts and higher cashback!

If you're wondering why an app would want photos of our receipts, I thought about that too. When you answer the demographic survey in the app, there's a note before you start. It says they use your answers (and your receipts) as data in aggregates for market research purposes.

So just think of it as being a market study subject and your cashback is your payment for being a willful participant.

I think it's genius, creating an app for the brands' market research. It's easy, convenient, and data comes in real time because users snap their receipts within three days of purchase.

Snapcart was first launched in Indonesia and it reached the Philippines in 2016.

Are you using Snapcart too? How was the experience? Do you have other tips? Let me know in the comments!

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