Having Friends Pays off: 25 Refer-a-Friend Programs That Pay You
Some of the links in this post are from our sponsors. We’re letting you know because it’s what Honest Abe would do. After all, he is on our favorite coin.
Have friends? Co-workers? Family members?
If you fall in love with a product or service you use, you’re probably going to buzz about it. (I know we do!)
But did you know you can actually get paid to refer friends?
25 of the Best Referral Programs
We scoured the internet and found these companies offering awesome referral programs. If you take full advantage of these, you can easily bank thousands of dollars. But sometimes a crisp $5 bill is nice, too.
1. Acorns: Up to $100/Year
You’ve heard of Acorns, right? It’s one of our favorite micro-investing apps. You can start investing your spare change with as little as $5. (Plus, you’ll earn a $5 bonus when you sign up here.) Next, refer a friend to earn up to $100 in a calendar year.
2. Chime Bank: $25
Chime Bank is kind of the bank of all banks. It has no hidden fees, it can save you money automatically and it even delivers your paycheck early. When you refer a friend (tell ’em it only takes five minutes to sign up) who deposits $50 or more into the account, you’ll snag $25.
3. Dosh: $5
Dosh is a cold, hard cash-back app. When you spent money at a Dosh-affiliated retailer, you’ll get a percentage of cash back. Perhaps it’s 10% back from your local pizzeria. Or 3% back from Bed Bath & Beyond. When you refer a friend — and they connect their credit and/or debit card — you’ll earn $15.
4. OhmConnect: $20
California residents can earn extra money by syncing their utility accounts to a energy-sharing program called OhmConnect and agreeing to help reduce energy usage just a few hours a week.
It’s pretty simple, and you’re helping the environment. Your earnings are based on how much power you save. The more you save, the higher your “status,” which helps you earn even more.
Plus, with OhmConnect’s referral program, you can get paid up to $20 to help a friend save money and energy.
5. Shipt: $10 For Groceries
Shipt makes all your dreams comes true. That is, if you hate entering the grocery store. If you’re curious, read about how Shipt works here. If you already use it, recommend it to a friend. Both of you will get $10 to go toward your next grocery bill.
6. Groupon: $10 in Groupon Bucks
All right, Groupon has wacky deals sometimes, but you can find real gems (like pizza) and save a ton. When you refer a friend, you can bank $10 in Groupon bucks to spend on the next great deal you find.
7. InboxDollars: 10% of Friends’ Earnings
If you’re into survey sites, you’ve probably heard of InboxDollars. You can get paid to take surveys, watch videos and play games. When you refer a friend who signs up, you’ll earn 10% of their qualified earnings. Say they watch a video and earn $1. You’ll get 10 cents.
8. Blooom: $10 Amazon Gift Card
Need some 401(k) guidance? Blooom is a robo-advisor that’ll make sure your account is working hard for you. The hands-off service is $10 a month, but you don’t even have to get your friends to sign up to get the $10 gift card. If they simply opt for the free 401(k) check-up, that Amazon card is yours!
9. Credible: $100 to $1,000
Credible refinances student loans, and the service has saved graduates a ton of money (like $50,000). If you’ve already used the service and you refer a friend who refinances a balance of $30,000 or more, you’ll snag $1,000. For balances under $30,000, or for personal-loan referrals, you’ll still get $100.
Note: This offer ends December 31, 2017.
10. HealthyWage: $20 (No Limit!)
This site pays you to lose weight (these women did it!). You place a bet on yourself and if you carry through, HealthyWage pays you. When you recommend a friend, it’ll add $20 to your wager. So, for example, if you invite 100 friends who sign up, that’s an additional $2,000 you can win if you meet your weight-loss goal.
Remember, the referral bonus is only available during the first three months of your HealthyWage challenge, so start hustlin’.
11. Lucktastic: 1,000 Tokens
Love scratch-off tickets a little too much? Lucktastic is a great free option. You can play scratch-offs right on your phone. When you refer a friend who downloads the app, you’ll bank 1,000 tokens — good for all the spins.
12. Walmart Grocery: $10 Promo Code
Love using Walmart’s grocery online pickup and delivery service? You might as well spread the good word, and refer your friends. They’ll get $10 for groceries — and so will you.
13. Airbnb: $20 Toward Travel
I’m so mad all of my friends use Airbnb already… maybe I need to make more? If you refer a friend who takes their first trip, spending $75 or more, you’ll get an easy $20 toward your next adventure.
14. Lyft: A Free Ride
If you drive with Lyft and refer a new driver, you could earn a bonus (amounts vary by location). If you refer a new Lyft rider, once they take their first trip, you’ll earn a free ride. Do note that this offer varies by location, so just check your Lyft app.
15. Uber: $5 Toward Your Next Ride
Uber offers two options: When you’re a driver and refer a friend to start a new side gig, you can get rewarded. If you’re a passenger, you’ll snag a $5 credit when you refer friends and they use your code before requesting their first trip.
16. Decluttr: $10 (Up to $100)
It’s exactly as it sounds: Decluttr is an online platform on which you can purge all your old media (CDs, DVDs, etc.) and electronics. When you gently remind your friend to clean out their childhood bedroom, you’ll earn $10 after they complete their first order.
17. Shopkick: 250 Kicks
Rewards apps are great, but many times they require you to spend money to make some back. Shopkick is different, though. You can earn “kicks” just by walking into a store. These kicks then translate to gift cards. For example, 6,500 kicks will get you a $25 Amazon gift card.
When one of your referrals signs up for Shopkick, you’ll bank 250 bonus kicks. That’s like walking into five Targets.
18. Achievement: 500 Points
When you download the Achievement app, it works passively to track your steps and activities, and it rewards you with points, which convert to dollars. Once you hit 10,000 points, you earn $10.
Help yourself reach that goal faster by referring friends (up to 20) and earning an extra 500 points without even leaving your couch.
Heads up: This is for a limited time only.
19. Sam’s Club: $10 E-Gift Card
Are you a Sam’s Club member? When you send a friend your unique referral link (found here), and they sign up, you’ll collect a $10 e-gift card, and they’ll collect a $20 e-gift card.
20. AAA: Refer a Friend for 20 AAA Dollars
Got AAA? You can help a friend out without changing their tire on the side of a highway by referring them to AAA. You’ll get 20 AAA Dollars, which will go toward your card’s renewal. Plus, you both can score awesome, unexpected discounts.
21. Chase Credit Cards: Varies
A lot of credit cards offer great refer-a-friend deals, especially Chase. I have the Chase Sapphire card, and when I refer a friend, I get 10,000 points, which is enough to cover a flight (depending on where I’m going). I can max out at five friends — or 50,000 points.
To find out if your Chase card offers a refer-a-friend bonus, enter your information here.
22. Hulu: $10 Visa Prepaid Card
23. Rent the Runway: $30 Off
Rent the Runway is an online shop that lets you rent designer dresses for a fraction of their price tags. (Penny Hoarder Susan Shain loves it!) When you refer a friend, not only will they get $30 off their next purchase, you’ll get $30, too.
24. Hotels.com: $50 Off
If you travel a lot, you know how expensive hotels can be. Hotels.com not only helps you save, but when you refer a friend (who then books a $200-plus stay), you’ll also get $50 towards your next booking. Your friend will get $50 off, too.
Carson Kohler (@CarsonKohler) is a staff writer at The Penny Hoarder. She’s been humming the Beatles’ “With A Little Help From My Friends” while researching this post. Off-key, of course.