So much technology at your disposal, yet you still somehow manage to pay full price for things every now and again. Nip that bad habit in the bud! These five free apps will do much of the heavy lifting for you, while leaving extra money in your pocket.
DealNews (Android, iOS, web) is a great place to start if you’re looking for a deal but you’re not quite sure what you actually want to buy yet. The site and its companion apps serve up the day’s hottest deals found at a seemingly endless parade of stores, large and small. You can filter deals by category, with deals rated from one to five depending how good they are. Each deal has a comments section as well, so you can find out more info from other users.
Load the ShopSavvy (Android, iOS) app up on your phone to do a little comparison shopping the next time you’re in a brick-and-mortar store. Find an item you’re interested in buying and scan its barcode with your phone’s camera, and ShopSavvy will let you know if you can find it online for less. As a bonus, the app can check if the retail store has a price-matching policy you can leverage in order to get the same price as you would online.
Before you buy anything online, check RetailMeNot (Android, iOS, web) to see if the site you’re on has any promo codes or coupons available. The service scours stores and bubbles popular coupon codes up to the top of the pile, relaying information such as what percentage of people successfully used each code and the most recent day a particular code was verified to work.
There’s no excuse for Costanza Wallet when apps like Stocard (Android, iOS) exist. You can ditch all the loyalty cards that keep fattening up your back pocket and make your keychain a ridiculous planetoid of tiny rings and plastic rectangles. Simply scan the back of each of your loyalty cards–there are more than 400 prebuilt into the app–or scan more obscure cards manually. Then when you get up to the register, load up your card and be on your way.
Many stores offer to refund you the difference if something you purchase goes on sale shortly after you buy it. Paribus (iOS, web) not only automatically keeps track of such occurrences, but promises to contact stores on your behalf to request price matches. You link your email address to the stores you shop at most in order to allow the app to track what you’ve bought, and if it finds a discrepancy, all you’ll need to do is sit back and wait for your refund. Note that though the service is free to use, it will take a cut of up to 25% of each refund it negotiates for you. But you can drop the fee to 0% by referring friends.