Get cashback at shops like Waitrose and Argos to bring down your phone bill.
A few months back on the podcast I talked about my favourite money apps for my phone, and one which my guest Jordon Cox suggested was Airtime Rewards.
This was one I’d heard of but never got around to trying out. Well, I’ve now given it a go and I can give you the full low-down. Plus I’ve got a promo code to give you a bonus when you get started.
What is Airtime Rewards?
Airtime Rewards is an app you download to your phone then connect to your bank cards. Each time you use your connected card at participating retailers you’ll earn some money back that’ll go towards your phone bill.
So let’s say you use your connected card at Topshop to buy a £30 shirt. This is processed completely by your card as normal.
However, Airtime Rewards will automatically track the transaction and calculate how much cashback you’re owed – in Topshop’s case it’s currently 5%. That’d mean you’ll earn £1.50, which will then be knocked off your mobile phone bill.
Is Airtime Rewards any good?
I connected my cards, got my bonus for joining up (more on that further down the page) and then forgot about it until I decided to write about it.
And I wish I’d paid more attention. Whenever I can, I normally use my American Express credit card as I earn 1.25% back on every purchase. Since you can’t connect Amex to Airtime Rewards, it means that I’m less likely to use my connected cards.
If I had, I could have earned more money. Last month I bought a coat and some socks at Uniqlo, and used the Amex. But if I’d realised that retailer was on the app I’d have been able to earn 8% back via Airtime Rewards
On the same day, I didn’t use my Amex at the burger chain Byron – which means I’ll get 5% back in unexpected cashback from my connected card.
So there’s definitely the potential to earn some extra money with Airtime Rewards, especially if you don’t use an Amex. There are also ways to stack your cashback with other offers – I’ve explained more further down the article.
However, if you do use an American Express then you’ll need to keep an eye on the retailers on the app.
How much can you earn?
The rates vary by retailer. Some offer just 1%, others can go as high as 10%. A handful also offer different rates depending on how much you spend. For example, Morrisons will only give you 1% back unless you spend £20 when you get 10%.
What cards can you add to Airtime Rewards?
The cards can be a debit or credit card, but only Mastercard or Visa. Sadly, American Express won’t work.
You add a card in the app, either by using the camera icon in the top right corner of the app to scan your card, or by typing in your card number and expiry date.
It can take 24 hours for cards to be approved, so it’s worth getting as many of your cards on the app as soon as you get it. You need to have the card active before making a transaction for it to track.
What mobiles networks can you use?
Airtime Rewards say that you can use it on most monthly contract and Pay As You Go networks.
How do you redeem Airtime Rewards?
In theory, it’s very easy. You simply hit the rewards tab on the app and the money will be sent to your phone network and knocked off your bill after 24 hours.
However you do need to earn at least £10 to activate your reward. A typical rate is 5%, though some are less. Let’s say the average is 3.5%, you’d need to spend just under £300 to get your first £10.
Though check out the sign-up bonus at the bottom of this article to get you started with £1.50 credit.
What retailers are on Airtime Rewards?
There are new retailers added all the time. Some shops let you earn the money back both online and in-store. Others restrict you to just one.
You might also in some cases need to use the card itself and not Apple Pay or Google Pay. This information is all on the app, along with the current cashback rate.
Right now (1/4/2020) you can earn money back at the following (though some are paused due to Coronavirus closures):
- Boux Avenue
- Crew Clothing
- Dorothy Perkins
- Foot Locker
- JoJo Maman Bebe
- M&M Direct
- Miss Selfridge
- River Island
Food, Drink & Entertainment
- Ask Italian
- Bella Italia
- Cafe Rouge
- Caffe Nero
- Chef & Brewer
- Farmhouse Inns
- Hungry Horse
- Laithwaite’s Wine
- Papa John’s
- Pizza Express
- Spaghetti House
- TGI Friday
- Tom’s Kitchen
- YO! Sushi
Home & Technology
- Appleyard Flowers
- Carphone Warehouse
- Mamas & Papas
- Pure Pet Food
- The White Company
Health & Beauty
- Feel Unique
- Holland & Barrett
- The Body Shop
- The Protein Works
Travel & Motoring
- Barrhead Travel
- Intrepid Travel
- National Express
- Kwik Fit
- Rail Europe
How to stack Airtime Rewards with other offers
If your bank or credit card has its own reward programme which offers extra cashback at participating retailers, then you should be able to get both those rewards.
For example, the handful of transactions I’ve made at Waitrose will earn me 1% from Airtime Rewards. Yes that’s less than what I’d get with the Amex, but I used my connected John Lewis & Partners credit card which is currently giving me 2% back. So overall that’s 3% off my shopping.
You can take it a step further too. If the Airtime Rewards retailer allows online purchases then you could shop via a cashback site like Quidco or TopCashback and earn a third set of cashback!
Airtime Rewards promo code
If you want to sign up then you can get a bonus £1.50 once you make your first connected purchase if you use the code FGUHNUQH. You’ll get 50p for signing up and another £1 if you spend within the first seven days,