17 Money Making Apps for Earning on the Go

Advertiser Disclosure

Our readers always come first

The content on DollarSprout includes links to our advertising partners. When you read our content and click on one of our partners’ links, and then decide to complete an offer — whether it’s downloading an app, opening an account, or some other action — we may earn a commission from that advertiser, at no extra cost to you.

Our ultimate goal is to educate and inform, not lure you into signing up for certain offers. Compensation from our partners may impact what products we cover and where they appear on the site, but does not have any impact on the objectivity of our reviews or advice.

Our number one goal at DollarSprout is to help readers improve their financial lives, and we regularly partner with companies that share that same vision. If a purchase or signup is made through one of our Partners’ links, we may receive compensation for the referral. Learn more here.

Do you need some extra cash but don’t have time or the ability to get a part-time job? If this rings true for you, consider using one of many money-making apps to add extra cushion to your wallet.

There are tons of money-making apps out there that allow you to work online — more than you’d expect.

You can get paid directly through PayPal, receive free gift cards to your favorite retailers, or get cash back on all your purchases. Companies are eager to get new app users — and they’re willing to pay you for it. If you’re going to spend hours on your phone each day, it can’t hurt to make a little extra money while you’re at it.

17 Best Money Making Apps for 2021

This list of best apps to make money using your phone is broken down into the following categories:

This list has some of the best apps for making money, both for Android and iPhone. Some even have a browser-compatible version you can use, helpful if you have time at work.

Side Hustle Apps

Whether you’re saving to buy a house or trying to pay off credit card debt, using a side hustle app can be a simple way to make more money when you need it.

1. DoorDash

Working as a driver for DoorDash entails picking up food from local restaurants and chains and delivering it to customers. DoorDash drivers earn a base pay and also get to keep 100% of their tips.

As a driver, you can earn extra money when DoorDash offers special promotions and challenges. There’s also special “Peak Pay,” when drivers can get paid more. According to Indeed.com, DoorDash drivers earn around $15 an hour.[1]

doordash driver app screenshots
DoorDash Driver App iPhone Screenshots

Unlike rideshare companies, you can have any kind of car to deliver for DoorDash. You do need to have a driver’s license, a clean driving record, a smartphone, and be at least 18 years old.

In some cities, you’re allowed to deliver on a bike, scooter, motorcycle, or even by foot. However, you’re responsible for expenses such as gas, parking, and tolls. 

Related: How to Make Money Driving for DoorDash

2. Decluttr

If you’ve got piles of used DVDs, CDs, Blu-rays, or video games lying around your house, you can make a few dollars selling them with the Decluttr app. It also accepts electronics like phones, tablets, and game consoles.

You can download the Delucttr app and scan items directly with your phone. It’ll give you an instant offer on your item.

decluttr quote for iPad 4th generation

Once you’ve accepted the offer, you’ll print out the pre-paid label and send off your goods. You can drop off the box at a UPS Store, customer center, authorized retail outlet, or with a UPS driver.

Related: 7 Best Places to Sell Electronics for Cash

3. Swagbucks

One of the best money-making apps out there, Swagbucks quickly stands out because they offer an unlockable $10 bonus for new users.

Swagbucks also allows users to accrue points (SBs) by completing various micro-jobs that they can put towards PayPal cash or free gift cards. Specifically, users can earn points by:  

  • Taking paid surveys
  • Watching videos or ads
  • Getting cash back when shopping online
  • Using the Swagbucks search engine
  • Playing games
  • Discovering deals
  • Referring other people to Swagbucks

Swagbucks Bonuses and Streaks

There’s no limit to how much you can earn. You’re not going to replace your full-time income with it, but if you start using Swagbucks as your web browser, play some games, and take a few surveys, you could potentially boost your income by $25 to $50 each month.

With an A rating with the Better Business Bureau and over 20 million active members, there’s no reason not to try one of the best money-making apps out there.

Related: Swagbucks Review 2021: The Best (and Worst) Features of the Rewards App

4. Turo

If your car spends more time in the driveway than on the road, you might consider renting it out on Turo. Turo is an app where you can list your car for other people to rent. It’s an easy way to earn money, especially if you don’t need your car on a regular basis.

You can use Turo’s “carculator” to see how much you can make using the app. According to its site, a 2016 Toyota Camry in Seattle would earn $244 a month.

Example earnings for a Toyota Camry hybrid listed on Turo

Your car must meet certain requirements before you can sign up:

  • No more than 130,000 miles
  • Clean title
  • Fewer than 12 years old
  • Not registered in New York
  • Not listed on any other site

If you’re renting out a specialty or classic car, then it must be:

  • 1990 model or earlier
  • Valued at least $85,000
  • Safe and in excellent mechanical condition

Turo isn’t available in every city, but if you live in a major city like Los Angeles or Washington, D.C. then check to see how much you could make with the app.

Related: 9 Ways to Generate Passive Income with Your Car

5. Rover

Rover homepage

Rover is a money-making app that helps pet owners find qualified pet sitters and dog walkers to care for their animals. You can offer various services such as overnight pet boarding, dog walking, or doggy daycare. This is an especially great option if you have a work-from-home job.

The major perk? You can set your own rates. Rover collects a service fee of 20%. So if you charge $20 per walk, you’ll keep $16 and Rover will take the other $4. Once your services are complete, you can redeem your earnings for free via PayPal or pay $2 to receive a check in the mail.

You’ll have to pass a background check and provide references. Once approved, you can start making money fast with Rover. The platform offers 24/7 veterinary support, insurance, and you can accept as many or as few pet sitting or walking jobs as you want.

Related: How to Make Money Dog Sitting with Rover (Advice from an Experienced Sitter)

6. Instacart

Instacart is a grocery delivery service where customers order their products online and Instacart shoppers (potentially you) prepare the order for pickup or delivery. As a full-service shopper, you’re an independent contractor. You’ll shop for the products your customer wants and deliver them to the address.

instacart full service shopper description

Chris Cucchiara, a DollarSprout reader and Instacart super-shopper, made over $4,500 in his first two months as a full-service shopper. He recently shared “the real secret to achieving high earnings is to be selective with the batches you pick. The key is to wait to take orders until they make you about $30 per hour. This is done by getting preferably only one order and not two or three.” 

If you’d rather do the shopping than the delivery portion, you can apply to be an in-store shopper. This part-time position comes with a flexible schedule and doesn’t require a vehicle. You’ll prepare your customer’s order for them to pick up in-store.

instacart in store shopper description

In either position, you can expect to make $10 to $15 per hour and get paid via direct deposit. However, full-service shoppers have the ability to receive tips whereas in-store shoppers do not.

You need to be 18, eligible to work in the US, have access to a car, able to lift up to 50 pounds, and have a relatively new smartphone.

Related: How to Earn $50 to $1,000+ per Month as an Instacart Shopper 

7. Gigwalk

Gigwalk is one of the more unique app-based job services. It pays people to help them gather data for market research. You don’t need a vehicle and you won’t be making deliveries or filling out surveys. Gigwalk helps companies with a range of small tasks. Many of the gigs involve going to a local business and taking pictures of how certain products are displayed or stocked.

Users can make anywhere from $3 to $100 per gig depending on the difficulty and length. Most take as few as five minutes, but others can take a few hours.

how the gigwalk app works

It can take a few days for your work to be approved and for you to get paid. You also have to follow the instructions carefully to make sure you understand. If you misread it, then you may not get paid, so pay close attention to all the instructions for each gig. 

Related: 17 Best Places to Find Small Task or Micro Jobs

Cash Back Apps

Cash-back apps give you money or points when you make a qualifying purchase at partner stores. These are usually easy to use and work with a variety of different in-person and online retailers.

8. Capital One Shopping

Do you ever wonder if you’re actually getting the best price when you’re buying something? Or do you assume that you’re getting the best deal if you shop on Amazon? If you’re not shopping around, you could be missing out on savings.

That’s where Capital One Shopping comes in. Capital One Shopping is an app or browser extension that notifies you when there’s a coupon available for something you’re viewing or if the same item is selling for a lower price elsewhere.

example savings on capital one shopping app

You can earn Capital One Shopping credits by shopping through partnered stores and restaurants, which you can redeem for gift cards to places like Walmart, Lowe’s, and Nordstrom Rack. Capital One Shopping also includes a watchlist where it’ll notify you when an item on your list drops in price.

Note: Capital One Shopping compensates us when you download the app or get the browser extension using the links provided.

9. Dosh

Dosh is a smartphone app that gives you cashback every time you make a purchase at participating outlets using your linked card.

Not having to jump through hoops to earn cashback is probably the biggest perk of Dosh. For instance, I’ve been getting cash back from Exxon each time I fill up my gas tank and I didn’t even realize it until recently. The money just gets added to my Dosh account.

dosh app screenshots

Download the app, link your credit card (the app is secure), then spend as you normally would. You can start shopping at participating merchants using your credit card and points will be added to your “Dosh Wallet” straight away.

Once your balance reaches a minimum of $25, you can cash out via direct deposit or PayPal.

Related: Dosh Review 2021: Pros, Cons, and How to Earn the Most Cash Back

10. Ibotta

money making apps for android phones - Ibotta earnings screenshot

Ibotta is yet another of the money-making apps you’ll see on this list that revolves around cash back shopping.

But unlike apps similar to Ibotta, the company has become immensely popular worldwide because it extends to grocery brands, warehouse clubs, and drugstore chains including Walmart, Food Lion, Kroger, Walgreens, CVS, and Sam’s Club. Ibotta also works with high-end grocery stores like Whole Foods and discount ones like Aldi.

When you open the Ibotta app, you can look at your favorite stores and see what offers they have. If you see an offer you’re interested in, you can select it and add it to your account. Once you’re done shopping, take a photo of the receipt to get the special rebate.

It also has an affiliate program that allows users to earn even more money by inviting friends to the app.

Ibotta offers a $10 sign-up bonus for new members and will pay you $5 more for each friend you refer.

Related: Ibotta Review 2021: Grocery Cash Back Simplified 

Apps That Pay for Things You Already Do

While some apps require you to change your shopping habits or spend time taking surveys, others will reimburse you for activities and habits you already engage in regularly.

11. Mistplay (Android Only)

If you love playing video games and want more money to indulge your hobby, consider trying out the Mistplay app. You can play games and earn gift cards to Amazon, iTunes, Nintendo, and Xbox. These are perfect rewards for a video game lover.mistplay app homepage

If you have a job where you’re allowed to be on your phone, then this app can be a fun way to kill some time and earn rewards for something you care about. The Mistplay app has a 4.1 rating on the Google Play Store.

Related: 22 Real Money Earning Games That Pay You Cash to Play

12. HealthyWage

If you’re trying to lose weight and need extra motivation, how about the chance to earn $10,000 while doing it?

HealthyWage offers a variety of ways to earn money and is one of a few apps that pay you to lose weight. You can take on a weight loss challenge on your own, or you can enter a team challenge and motivate each other to shed more pounds. The minimum weight loss goal is 10%. With HealthyWage’s 10% Challenge, if you drop 10% of your body weight in six months, you could earn upwards of $300 (depending on how many friends you invite to participate).

HealthyWage Prize Calculator

HealthyWage beats those at-work pools where people don’t pay up, or worse, the competition never gets started. If you can’t find a gym buddy to hold you accountable, then try using an app that targets your wallet.

Related: HealthyWage Review: Get Paid Up to $10,000 to Lose Weight

13. Achievement

If you need additional accountability to reach your health goals, another good app is Achievement. You can double-dip and earn furter rewards for exercising and sticking to a meal plan. The app syncs with other fitness apps such as your Fitbit or MyFitnessPal. Users earn points which you can then redeem for cash. Every 10,000 points equates to $10 which you can withdraw to your bank or PayPal. You can also donate points to charity.

achievement app screenshots
Achievement App iPhone Screenshots

Start by syncing the Achievement app to your other fitness apps and make sure to log your activity in those apps (if it’s not already done automatically). It can take a long time to earn enough points to redeem for cash but think of this as a passive way to get paid for being healthy and to provide an incentive to stick to your healthy habits.

Related: 13 Legit Apps That Pay You to Walk by Tracking Your Steps

Passive Income Apps

If you want a way to earn more money without a lot of extra work, consider these apps for ideas to make passive income.

14. Neighbor

Neighbor users make passive income by storing people’s belongings in their spare space at home. If you have a shed, closet, or attic you’re not using, you could make passive income with this app.

Like all forms of passive income, renting out your space requires a little bit of a time investment upfront. But Neighbor takes care of most of the work for you by connecting you with local renters.

You’ll make a listing and renters will apply to reserve your space. You have 48 hours to view the candidate’s profile, ask questions, and make a decision. If you don’t act within that timeframe, the reservation will automatically be declined.

Neighbor Homepage

If you find a renter looking for a long-term option, you could earn passive income renting out your unused space each month. 

Related: 7 Ways to Make Money Renting Out Your Space

15. Nielsen Computer & Mobile Panel

You may have heard of Nielsen ratings for TV shows, but it turns out that Nielsen pays you to collect data on more than just TV. One area it’s interested in is your internet usage.

What does that mean for you? It means Nielsen will pay you $50 a year to keep its app on your favorite internet browsing device. The app itself collects statistics on your internet usage anonymously, so you never have to worry about any data being linked to you.

The Nielsen Computer & Mobile Panel is a money-making app that pays users in exchange for permission to monitor their internet usage and browsing data.

The app doesn’t take up much space and won’t slow down your phone or tablet. Better yet, they’ll give you $5 just for signing up using an eligible device as long as you remain active for 30 days. 

Related: 13 Companies That Pay You for Your Data

16. Honeygain

Similar to Nielsen, Honeygain is an app that uses data from your internet browsing history to help companies with research. According to its website, users who download Honeygain can earn up to $19 a month.

However, this amount depends on your internet speed, location, and other factors. Even if you earn less than the projected figure, it’s a completely passive way to earn money. Once you download Honeygain, you don’t have to do anything.

how to make money passively with the honeygain app

You will need to earn at least $20 before you can withdraw the funds. Once you do have that amount, you can request your money via PayPal. 

17. Acorns

acorns app screenshotIf you want to start saving up for your future and investing for retirement, consider checking out Acorns.

With a beginner-friendly platform and interface, Acorns is one of the best investing apps available. It’s easy to sign up, and you can set aside a certain amount every month or round up money from every purchase you make with a linked account. The app will take the change and invest it in your Acorns account.

Acorns also offers a $10 signup bonus for new users.

Once you sign up and complete your registration, Acorns will deposit $10 into your account to give your investments a head start.

App Developers Are Constantly Looking for Ways to Reward Users

These apps are just some of the ones that can make you money. There are new apps coming out all the time. Just be careful about what you download and what kind of information you provide.

If you don’t mind getting the legwork out of the way and filling out a bunch of registration forms over the next hour, you can get started with many items on the list right now and be making money from your phone in no time.

 
Author
Ben Huber

Hi! I'm Ben. A personal finance nerd on a mission to help DollarSprout readers make and save more money. A quoted contributor for Business Insider, Business.com, Discover, Intuit, MSN, NBC News, Yahoo Finance and more, I work to help others live their financial best life.

23 comments
Christina
Christina

I am unemployed and have no money. I need money ASAP because I do not want to lose anything I have. Any good apps or money-making websites that can pull in fast money?

Nikki
Nikki

Instacart is amazing. I average $25 an hour. Not sure where you live, but here in Denver, it’s super popular I can make about $150 in 6-7 hours.

Amy
Amy

Another good one is Receipt Hog. All you do is take pics of receipts. You earn points for them toward PayPal cash, Amazon, and a few other gift cards. It’s not a huge amount, but if you collect receipts from your friends (and ones left behind at the stores), it adds up quickly. You’ll also get surveys to fill in for points. I add all my receipts and let it tell me it didn’t count. Only a few haven’t (like ABC stores). You have to upload the receipt during the week stamped on the receipt.

Joe
Joe

Christina,

Do you have anything you can sell that you don’t need? List it on Craigslist but be sure to meet prospective buyers in a public place like a coffee shop, etc.
Can you babysit other people’s kids (friends or neighbors)?
Most restaurants are always hiring so that’s another option.

I hope this helps.

Michelle
Michelle

What skills do you have?

Do you like doing artsy/crafty things? There’s a lot of super simple things that you can make to sell. If it’s ’tis the season [Christmas] people are buying like crazy! You would be amazed at what people will buy. Weird artist types, such as myself, will even buy things that you and everyone else would throw away! (Toilet paper, paper towel rolls, intact wine corks, bottle tops, rolled newspaper, etc.). These types of items and anything “vintage”…sell it on Etsy, for numerous reasons.

Can you write? While there are many more lucrative ways to write content online, Textbroker has saved my butt in those “Omg, I need money NOW!” moments numerous times! They’ve never failed to have my money in my PayPal account by Friday whenever I have cashed out (the articles range from stupid simple to a fair bit of effort required). The higher your star rating, the more opportunities and better-paying assignments that are available to you.

Those are two that have personally helped me out of jams. There are others but, as I said, what are your skills/interests?

Didzki
Didzki

I can write. Guess that’s where I can start!

John D
John D

Great list. I really like RewardsMobi.com. They seem to provide the highest payouts for completed tasks.

Keep it up!

Kathy Dufresne
Kathy Dufresne

If anyone likes trivia, KO trivia pays up to $10,000 in PayPal cash. I have been paid 3 times. So far I’ve earned $5, $10, and $20 increments respectively. Working on the higher amounts now!

Joseph
Joseph

I just lost my job and I’m looking to make money fast so I don’t lose my stuff. All I know is food service and cleaning — any good recommendations for earning quickly?

Shirley
Shirley

I could not find Slidejoy in the App Store. Is it not available on iPhones?

Apple no longer allows lock screen apps (apps that have permissions over the iOS lock screen) to be approved in the App store. This may change in the future but they’re careful about what apps have certain permissions over their devices.

Christina Middleton
Christina Middleton

Does anyone know of any websites that will send you a check in the mail other than InboxDollars, SendEarnings, or CashCrate? Thanks. I need to know this info quickly.

Javier Doe
Javier Doe

Great post.

Atik
Atik

I am unemployed and have no money. I need money ASAP because I do not want to lose everything I have. Any good apps or money-making websites that can pull in fast money?

Lenon
Lenon

Hey Ben, thanks for such wonderful information. I am currently unemployed and I don’t have a lot of money to get by but I love reading and writing.

I am flexible and can do a lot of things, but most of the apps you listed don’t work here in Africa. Are there any options on our side of the sea?

Uche
Uche

Thanks, Ben! I’m going to try some of these out this weekend and see if any of them are any good.

No problem. Let us know how it goes!

Annette
Annette

Postmates is amazing in Dallas, TX. I’ve been working with them for extra money since they came to Dallas 3 years ago now. I make great money. It’s easy and you can decline jobs with any bad dings. I love it. I live right in one of the hot spots and it’s busy. It’s a great service. Much better than Uber Eats or Grubhub. A lot less internal nonsense. I highly recommend Postmates. I’m starting Instacart this next week and will report back on how it goes. It’s a fairly new and growing app in DFW. I’m gonna give the in-store shopper gig a chance too.

Cheers!

Sandy
Sandy

My aunt used to make great money stuffing envelopes or something like that. Paid nothing upfront. She’d go pick up her box, do what her job was, then send it back. I cannot find any legit places that do this. Not around anymore?
Thank you for your input!

TLeigh Tracy
TLeigh Tracy

It seems that for me there’s always a technical obstacle (or some sort of scam, ugh) that’s preventing me from making money online. I’ve been trying for a year and have not been able to freely make money like the rest of you. Any suggestions or possible ways that I can jump this hurdle?

Ugh, for sure. The one drawback in this part of the online space (trying to figure out to make money online) is that it’s wrought with people trying to prey on others’ misfortune.

Let’s start with what sort of skills do you have? Do you have experience and/or education in a particular field? Often, the highest paying opportunities can be found in remote work within that field. Even if you don’t have an education/past experience, roles like that of a virtual assistant, a proofreader, or a transcriptionist, are a good fit for newbies just trying to generate an income online. If you’re not looking for that much work, here’s a list of other ways you can make money online (that don’t necessarily mean landing job-like role).

Kaycee Messmer
Kaycee Messmer

Slidejoy doesn’t work anymore. They stopped a month or so back and refused to pay out what was owed to people.

That’s really frustrating. We see they’ve been removed from the app store and their website is now down, so we’ve removed them from our list. Thanks for the heads up!

Leave your comment

You May Also Like