I like to save money by using Rebate apps, but they are not all the same.
In my opinion, Ibotta has it hands down for Grocery apps. Tried a few others….but this one works well, has great offers and pays out! But what about for Non-Grocery items???
Ebates vs Ibotta
My non-grocery experience with Ibotta has gone both good and bad.
It works for drinks at Restaurants/Bars. I order a qualifying beverage at a restaurant or bar, scan my receipt and get immediate credit. Just like with groceries.
For purchases made at a Best Buy, you have to have a QR code scanned at check out in the store. I have done this on 2 occasions and never got credit either time. With Ebates, if you order online from Best Buy, your rebate credits right away and you get your payment with your next quarterly check.
When you order from any online retailer through Ibotta, you have to keep a very close eye on the rebate. It will tell you how many days it will take to clear (30, 45, 60 or even 90) from the retailer. You have to make sure that eventually, you do get the credit promised to you. With Ebates, they alert you right away what you rebate amount is and you know you will get it in your next quarterly check. And you can always go to their menu to see an itemization of the rebates that will be included in that check!
With Ebates, I have never had a Customer Service issue since starting with them in February 2017! I always know what my rebate amount will be, when to expect payment and how much my total quarterly payout will be. Can’t ask for much better than that. Ibotta often has glitches in their program that requires you to start a ticket with their Customer Service. That service has gotten worse and worse with longer turn around times to resolve issues or no resolution at all. Frustrating.
Here are some current Comparisons:
I use the Boxed site to order items I purchase in bulk. I place an order about every 6 weeks to make sure it is big enough to avoid paying shipping charges. When I am ready to place an order, I check both Ebates and Ibotta to see which one has the best rebate at that time. In additon, Ibotta sometimes has special Bonuses for Boxed orders. So if they are similar, I order from Ebates. But if there is a big payout or bonus at Ibotta, I use them instead. Maximizing my money back.
I have friends though who have scored big rebates through Groupon, Pet Food orders or Priceline using Ibotta with no issues. You just have to be willing to be patient and monitor your rebates.
Priceline is a 75 day turn around after completing your stay/flight/rental. Groupon has a 45 day waiting period after order fulfillment.
Petco has some specific offers directly on the site that can be redeemed like groceries for immediate credit. But if you order online you get 5% of whatever you buy payable after 70 days.
Subscribe as a new user to Hulu through Ibotta and get a $15 Rebate payable 90 days after onset of service. Ebates also offers a $15 Rebate on new subscriptions to Hulu basic and $25 for Hulu Live.
Order from Ticketmaster on Ibotta and get 1% payable in 3 days. Not too bad. Ebates has categories ranging from 1-5% depending on the kind of tickets.
If you check Living Social right now, Ibotta is a 7% rebate payable after 70 days and Ebates is an 8% Rebate.
Both sites offer “flash sales” or bonus offers. Ibotta recently offered a rebate for new subscribers to Blue Apron. The offer started at $52, then dropped to $42 and a few days later was down to $12.50. So you have to act fast to get the best Rebate. With Ibotta this meant that you could not use any other Blue Apron coupons or promo codes. The rebate is payable up to 45 days after your first box purchase. With Ebates the current offer for Blue Apron is a $7 Rebate and you still get $50 off your first 2 boxes purchased ($25 each box).
My Best Advice
- Sign up for both programs
- Check Rebates on both sites before making purchases
- Always check to see if Ibotta has a special offer or bonus in addition to the regular rebate amount
- Read the small print and rebate turn around days on any Ibotta offers
- Keep track of when you expect your rebates to pay out
- Don’t be afraid to reach out to Customer Service if something doesn’t get credited properly
Both are good programs that provide some of the best rebates out there. I do prefer Ibotta for grocery and Ebates for non grocery UNLESS their is a special offer. For me using Ebates takes out the extra step of following the rebate along until it credits to my account. I will continue to use both of these programs because the savings are worth the time I put in. If you haven’t used these programs, give them a try!