I’m always on the lookout for ways to make money. And since we all work so hard for the money we earn, it’s also nice to come across simple ways to save, too. So, when I come across easy ways to earn a little extra cash that can also help rack up savings, I’m especially excited to share.
One of the easiest ways to do both is by joining refer-a-friend programs for your favorite brands and products that you already use. Depending on the program, this could amount to a nice chunk of change each year or cut down on the costs of using those products or services each month.
And the best part? A lot of the companies you probably do business with have these programs, making it easy to sign up and start receiving rewards. Here’s 40+ popular refer-a-friend programs that help you earn extra money and save big on your favorite businesses and brands.
What are Refer-a-Friend Programs?
Each one is a bit different. Typically, all you have to do is share your unique referral link with your friends and if they purchase/sign-up for the product or service you’ll be rewarded.
The reward is different at each company. But it’s usually one of two things:
- Account credit
These programs are a win-win. The company gets a new customer and you get a bonus offer just for making the referral. And a lot of time, your friend will even get an incentive or reward to join, too (win-win-win!).
Why Join Refer-a-Friend Programs?
Most people tend to seek out advice from friends and family members before making a purchase or signing up for a service. And chances are, you’ve been asked for your opinion on everything from cell phone service to a pair of shoes. Wouldn’t it be nice to receive rewards for the suggestions you make?
How Much Can You Actually Earn?
That all depends. Generally speaking, you really shouldn’t look at this as anything more than a way to earn and save for doing something you’re gonna do anyway — make recommendations to your friends and family.
Since each program has a different model, your earnings will depend on how many programs you participate in, what their payment/reward structure is, and how many referrals you make.
On a personal note, I actively use and love the Ibotta app. It makes it super-easy to save on everything from fresh produce to household goods. I often recommend this super helpful app to others and, when they sign up using my link, I get $5 and they get a reward for joining.
In the last year, I’ve earned an extra $100 referring people to Ibotta. Not amazing, I know. But it’s a hundred bucks that I got for doing nothing out of the ordinary — recommending an app I love to my friends.
Ready to sign up and start actually getting paid for your recommendations? I’ve included some of the most popular companies with refer-a-friend program on this list. To make it easier to browse, I’ve broken it down by category. Let’s go!
Banks & Credit Cards
You probably have a checking account, savings account, debit card and may even have a couple of credit cards in your wallet. And if you’ve had a pleasant experience with your financial institution or card issuer, you probably wouldn’t hesitate to recommend them to others. As far as refer-a-friend programs, banks and credit card companies offer some of the best referral rewards.
You’ve got to be a current Chase cardholder to participate in their refer-a-friend program. Chase will share a unique link on your behalf that you can send via email, Facebook or Twitter. The details of the program all depend on the card you have with Chase but you may be able to rack up as much as 50,000 bonus points each year.
Capital One 360
If you have a Capital One 360 account (checking or savings) you can get an easy $20 for each friend you refer (up to $1,000). The money is deposited into your account once your referral meets the sign-up requirements. Just login to your account and click on the refer-a-friend link to start sharing. To sweeten the deal, your friend gets a bonus $25 just for opening an account. Don’t have a Capital One 360 account? You can sign up for a free, no-fee checking or savings account so you too can get in on their refer-a-friend program.
If you’ve got an AmEx card in your wallet, you can participate in their referral program. All you have to do is login to your account to see what promotion is currently available. Usually, there’s an incentive for both you and your friend in the form of bonus points when they are approved for an American Express card.
It pays to have friends at Discover. Their referral program can earn both you and your friend a $50 cash back bonus. You’ll get the reward for each friend who’s approved (up to 10 a year) once they make a qualifying purchase with their new card within three months.
NetSpend is a prepaid debit card, so there’s no credit checks, interest charges or late fees to worry about here. As part of their refer-a-friend program, you can get $20 when someone signs up using your link and then loads their card with at least $40. As a bonus, your referral gets $20, too. Unlike a lot of other programs, NetSpend doesn’t limit the number of referrals you can earn — so spread the word and start earning!
When you refer friends and family members to Fidelity to help them meet their financial goals, you both can receive rewards once your referral opens and funds their new account. You may be eligible for a $100 Visa Card and your referral can earn a bonus between $250 and $2,500 depending on their opening deposit.
If you have a cell phone (and you probably do) chances are your carrier has a referral program in place. Participating in your carrier’s program can be an easy way to reduce the cost of your phone plan each month.
You’ll get a $25 in service credit (up to $500 a year) for each person you refer to Boost Mobile. And considering they have plans as low as $30/month, there’s the potential to get your phone service for next to nothing if you get just one referral a month! The person you refer will receive a bonus reward too when they sign up for service.
You and your friend both receive a $25 account credit when they sign up for service as a referral. The program is limited up to $250 in account credits each year. With monthly plans starting at $35/month, you could get service for as little as $10 for each month you refer a friend!
Do you like the unlimited plans, limitless music or generous data available to you as a Virgin Mobile customer? Tell your friends and earn $25 service credit each time one of them signs up (up to $500/year). Your referral will receive an account credit, too.
The AT&T Referral Program is available for their wireless, internet, home phone, and U-verse customers — so there’s plenty opportunities to earn. You and your friend each receive a $25 AT&T Promotion Card which can redeemed for merchandise or used toward monthly charges.
When your friends and family join TracFone as your referral, you get a reward and they get $5 off their phone purchase. The amount of your reward will depend on how much airtime they purchase. If it’s $79.99 or less, you get $10. Anything over that, and you get $30!
As an existing T-Mobile customer, you may be eligible to receive a $25 rewards card for each friend you refer. If your referrals need a little convincing, you can let them know that T-Mobile will pay their early cancellation fees when they trade in their working device — not too bad of a deal!
Cable and internet is expensive (especially cable!). Even if you’ve found ways to cut down these expenses, they can still take a nice chunk of your budget each month. One way to offset the costs is to see if your cable and/or internet provider has a refer-a-friend program and start spreading the word.
Called Xfinity Refer-a-Friend, you can share your unique code via email and social media. When someone signs up, you’ll receive a Visa Prepaid Card. The amount you gets depends on the services your referral signs up for and whether or not you’ve made any other referrals. The Xfinity Refer-a-Friend program pays out higher rewards the more signups you send their way.
Tell your friends, family, coworkers and anyone who’ll listen about DISH and get $50 account credit when they sign up. Be sure to tell your referrals that they’ll also get a $50 credit when they sign up using your referral code!
Both you and your friend receive $100 in bill credits when they sign up for eligible DIRECTV packages. The bill credits are broken up over 10 months so you’ll each get $10 off your monthly bill during that time. The more friends you refer the more you’ll save each month — up to 10 friends in a year.
NetZero is currently offering a $30 “bounty” for any people you refer for eligible promotions. What’s interesting about NetZero is that they actually mail you a check instead of offering account credits or prepaid cards as a reward.
It’s surprising to see that Verizon offers a referral program for their in-home service customers but not their mobile customers. In any event, if you refer friends for eligible services like Triple Play or Double Play, you’ll both get points. Points are redeemable through the Verizon My Reward+ Program.
If you do a lot of traveling you may benefit from the rewards programs that some popular hospitality companies offer. These rewards can help you cover the costs of your hotel or even help pay for that cruise you’ve been saving up to take.
If you’ve taken a trip through Princess Cruises before, be sure to let your friends who are dying to take a cruise that they can receive a $25 reward when they book using your referral code. You’ll also get $25 credit and can refer as many friends, family members, and coworkers as you’d like.
As a Marriott Rewards member, you can refer others and receive points for each stay your referrals make. One stay is worth 2,000 points and you can earn those points for each of your referrals’ first five stays. Your referrals also get 2,000 bonus points for those first five stays — those 10,000 bonus points can be used for room discounts, upgrades, and other Marriott perks.
Get your friends and family members to join Choice Rewards and you’ll each get 500 points added to your accounts. These points can be redeemed for a variety of rewards including room upgrades and discounts.
Earn Travel Credits when you refer friends to travel and/or host through Airbnb. When they travel, you’ll receive $35 and if they host, that’ll earn you $65 — for a potential total of $100 in credits. What’s great about the Airbnb credits is that they act as a coupon. So, when you go to book a stay, you can actually redeem your credits on the checkout page. Your referral will also receive a $35 code when they sign up through your referral.
You can get Uber rides for free when you take advantage of their promotion program. Just tap Free Rides in the Uber App to access your personal referral code. Uber credits and free rides will be added to your account when a friend take you up on the invite.
For each friend that tries Lyft for the first time using your referral code, you’ll get a free ride too. You can share your link through email, Facebook or Twitter.
The average American spends somewhere around $2,000 shopping online each year — that sure is a lot of opportunity to cash in for referring friends and family to check out some of your favorite brands. Most online stores offer a store credit over cash for referrals but if you shop at a store often enough, it can add up to quite a bit of savings on the things you’d buy anyway.
Your favorite daily deals site will reward you with $10 in Groupon Bucks for each friend you refer who then makes a $10+ purchase. You can use your Groupon Bucks for additional savings on already low-priced products — definitely a great program to be a part of to help pay for gifts or things you need around the home.
Kids clothes are expensive, especially considering they outgrow them so fast. Help your friends save on children’s clothes purchases by giving them a 25% off coupon to use at Gymboree. When they make their first order, you’ll be awarded with $20.
Refer loved ones to order prints and photo gifts through Shutterfly and you’ll both receive a free reward. The promotions change — so make sure you check in to see what the refer-a-friend reward is on occasion. Currently, you and your referral will both receive a free photobook!
At Snapfish, you can send your friends and family members a 40% coupon and you’ll earn a $10 credit when they make a purchase over $10. You can use your credit for prints, cards, announcements, and an assortment of fun photo gifts.
If you’ve got a lot of friends on Facebook and Pinterest, send them an invite to join Zulily where they can shop for everything from beauty and wellness to toys and playtime. When they make their first purchase, you’ll get $15 credit that will be applied to your future Zulily orders.
Ebates is a free site that gives you cash back when you make online purchases. If you’re not a member, sign up and start saving just for making online purchases. Earn even more when you refer friends — they’re currently offering a $50 bonus when you refer two friends.
The Ibotta app is better than coupons — it’s an app that makes it incredibly easy to save on everyday purchases at your favorite stores. If it’s not already on your phone, download Ibotta, redeem your first rebate and earn an extra $10. Then start earning $5 bonuses for each friend you refer (your friend gets $10!).
Subscription Boxes & Membership Sites
Subscription boxes and membership sites have soared in popularity in recent years. And, really, what’s not to love about them? The different boxes are usually delivered on a weekly or monthly basis and are tailored to specific interests. You can have all sorts of items from pets supplies to kids toys and personalized beauty products delivered right to your door.
Dollar Shave Club
Refer your friends to Dollar Shave Club and earn a $5 credit for each one that signs up — it’s just that simple. Your referrals can sign up for a monthly subscription box or purchase items individually — it doesn’t matter what they buy (or if they buy anything at all). You’ll get a $5 credit as soon as they sign up!
If you enjoy receiving your HelloFresh deliveries including the delicious recipes and flexible subscription options, let your friends know. When you send invites to friends, they get $20 off their first HelloFresh box and you get $20 off your next delivery.
Not only can you receive $25 in Thrive Cash when you refer friends who become a paying member, but you’ll also be entered into their sweepstakes to win $1,000 shopping spree if you refer five friends in a month’s time. You can easily share your unique link through email, Facebook and Twitter.
Some refer-a-friend programs just didn’t fit in the main categories but they’re nonetheless easy ways to make money and/or rack up savings. For an assortment of unique ways to reap the rewards of referrals check out these programs.
If you can credit Evernote for keeping you organized and helping you make the most out of your days, be sure to let your friends know about it! For your efforts, you’ll be given points which you can use to upgrade your free account to a premium membership which lets you annotate PDFs, retrieve files when you’re offline, and scan and digitize business cards (to name a few!).
Nobody likes the idea of being stranded on the roadside or locked out of their vehicle. That’s why you may belong to a roadside assistance program like AAA. When you refer your friends for a AAA membership, you’ll get $20 AAA Dollars that you can use to help pay for your membership renewal.
Let your friends know how Dropbox can help keep their files safe, secure and organized and you’ll earn more storage space for yourself. If they sign up for a basic account, you can receive 500MB of additional storage.
Refer your friends to Hulu and you’ll receive credit towards your own Hulu subscription. If you’re a Limited Commercials plan subscriber, you can earn a free year of Hulu just by referring others.
One of the most well-known survey and micro tasks sites around, InboxDollars will reward you when you send referrals their way. You’ll receive 10% of your referral’s earnings. There’s no limit to the number of referrals you make — so start sharing and watch your account balance grow!
If you’re a panelist at Vindale, you know that they pay some of the highest rates per survey and are one of the few places that still pay you cash and not points (if you’re not a member, you can easily sign up). As a bonus, they’ll deposit $5 into your account for each friend you refer.
Slice the Pie
Being paid to rate music and fashion is a fun way to earn a little extra money online. Chances are, your friends would probably agree! Slice the Pie will pay you a cash bonus every time your referral submits a review. If you’re not a reviewer on Slice the Pie, you can create an account and start sharing your referral link for an easy way to rack up extra cash.
Best Refer-a-Friend Practices
No one likes to be spammed. So, while you might be eager to share your referral links and codes with others, make sure you pace yourself! It’s good practice to only share your referrals with others you truly believe would enjoy and/or benefit from a product or service.
Also, make sure you understand each refer-a-friend program’s terms. Some of them have strict rules about where you can share your referral code. For example, you probably can’t go around adding your link on Wikipedia pages or represent yourself as an employee of the business or brand.
Find More Refer-a-Friend Opportunities
If your favorite brand, service or business isn’t on this list –don’t worry. They may still have a refer-a-friend program in place. Simply Google the company’s name + refer-a-friend to see if it leads to a referral page. I’ll also be continually updating this page as I come across more programs for popular places — so be sure to check back often.
Your turn! What refer-a-friend programs do you use? Is there one I missed you think should be on this list? Share it in the comments below!
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jerry bordelon says
Thank you Ashlee,
I thought of the idea and was picturing a type of reverse pyramid scheme where if everybody eventually branched out to the whole earth and every man woman and child would have a 5.00 coupon at DQ and spend them at once and put DQ out of business. Thanks.
I will let you know when my brand is out there so you can add me to your updated ist.