Review: Topcashback

TopCashback is easily one of my favourite websites. Every time I book a hotel, flight, arrange car rental, or go to buy something through Amazon or any other website, I always check to see whether they’re listed on a cashback website like TopCashback.com (or topcashback.co.uk in the UK).

Wait! What’s a cashback website?

Cashback websites work like this:

Many websites like Expedia, Walmart, or Sephora have an affiliate program whereby they pay other websites for referring customers to them. Those websites place adverts or links on their sites, and if someone clicks through and makes a purchase they get paid a commission.

Rather than take that commission, cashback websites give that money back to you. That means if Expedia.com is offering a 12% commission, a website like TopCashback.com will collect that money and give it back to you. On a $1,000 travel booking, that could be a very sizeable $120!

To get that cashback, all you have to do is:

Login to your TopCashback account (or create one if you haven’t already)

topcashback.com homepage
Create an account or login

Find the company that you want to shop with

a selection of travel websites on TopCashback
Search by company name or by type e.g. hotels

 

Click to go to that company’s website

Click the ‘Get Cashback Now’ button

Commission amounts vary depending on the retailer. Newegg.com typically only pay around 4%, while JC Penney pay up to 15%. Yes, it’s not just for travel. You can also save money at retailers like Walmart, Macy’s, Overstock, Target, and Sephora.

How much does it cost?

Signing up is completely free. Not only that, but TopCashback are currently offering a $10 bonus when you signup.

Going through a cashback website doesn’t affect the price of the item in any way: it doesn’t make it any more expensive or any cheaper. You just get the commission that a company would normally get for referring you.

Which companies can I shop with?

There are hundreds and potentially even thousands of companies listed. Some of the most popular travel companies on there include:

  • Expedia
  • com
  • com
  • Agonda
  • Holiday Inn
  • Hertz
  • National
  • Europcar
  • KLM
  • Etihad
  • Lufthansa

As mentioned, there are also plenty of retailers on there like Amazon, Levi Jeans, Dell, La Senza, and Best Buy.

How does this differ from voucher code websites?

They’re both very similar. With a voucher code website, you have to copy and paste the code into the box at the checkout. With a cashback website, you just make sure that you click the cashback link right before you make your purchase.

Personally, I prefer using a cashback site over a voucher code site. With voucher codes, you actually have to find the code and often that can be a real pain. Often these codes have expired, or worse there’s no code at all. With cashback sites, all you have to do is log into your account and click the retailer’s link. It’s much easier.

The only downside to cashback websites is that you have to wait several weeks or even months for the money to appear in your account. This is because the retailer needs to pay the cashback website before they can pay you. If it’s a retailer, it might take a few months because they need to make sure that you don’t return the item and get a refund first.

So, if you need the savings immediately use a voucher code website. If you’re happy to wait, I usually recommend the cashback website for ease of use.

Can you use a voucher code and cashback together?

It depends.

Some retailers allow both, others offer a lower cashback percentage if you use a voucher code, and others again will cancel your cashback if you’ve already used a voucher code. Note: they usually state if they allow both to be used in conjunction or not.

You’ll need to do some quick math to see what the best thing to do is, but if you can do both then this is usually the most lucrative for you. If you can only do one, however, it may be slightly more lucrative to use a cashback website.

How to increase your cashback earnings

You can also potentially earn slightly more from using cashback websites than you can from using a voucher code. Let’s say you’re spending $100 and both offer 10% in savings. At this point, you stand to earn $10 from either.

However, with a cashback website you can choose to get your earnings paid out in the form of a voucher instead of cash. Amazon.com, for example, currently offers a 3% bonus while the Gap offers 7%. 30 or even 70 cents isn’t that much on a $10, but considering I’ve saved thousands of dollars through TopCashback that extra bonus could add up to an extra few hundred dollars.

It goes without saying that you should only pick bonuses from retailers that you’ll actually shop with. I know that I’ll be shopping with Amazon anyway, so I’m happy to get my bonuses paid out in Amazon Gift Cards. I don’t really shop at the Gap, so I won’t go for their offer even though it’s a better bonus.

Other Cashback websites

TopCashback isn’t the only cashback website out there. There’s also Ebates, CouponCactus.comBeFrugal.com, Swagbucks, and Extrabux to name but a few.

Sometimes you’ll find a retailer that isn’t on TopCashback but is on another site like Ebates or BeFrugal.com. Or, you might find that one pays slightly better commission than another. Cashbackholic.comis a great website for seeing which website offers the highest percentage.

I’ve found TopCashback generally has the best payout rates, but sometimes they don’t have the retailer that I want listed. I have accounts with a few other sites, but use TopCashback as my main site.

Have you used TopCashback (or any other cashback website) to save money? Let us know your thoughts by leaving a review for TopCashback below. 

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