The fact that smartphones are incredibly useful likely goes without saying. After replying to an email on the go, I’ll still occasionally stop to marvel at how much something as simple as that makes me feel like we’re living in the future. And using O2’S Priority Moments the other day to get a great deal on a new gym membership (much needed after the break) made me think even more how lucky we are. Still, for all that they’re capable of (and that’s quite a bit, mind you), most people would agree that they unfortunately tend to be lacking in the help-me-spend-less-money department. Thankfully, that doesn’t have to be the case.
A number of apps from enterprising developers have sprung up over the course of the last few years with the goal of just that – helping you save money. Of course, merely installing the apps probably won’t do much for your wallet if you’re not going to actively use them as well. If you’re willing to be a proactive shopper, however, here’s a few great money saving apps to get you started.
Although we certainly can’t speak for others, it’s not uncommon for us to make a few quick impulse buys while on the high street, only to get home and find that our purchases could’ve been had for much cheaper elsewhere or online. RedLaser helps solve this problem by allowing you to scan a product’s barcode and then view both local and online price comparisons.
While that in and of itself would be worth the cost of entry (free!), the app also gives you ton of other useful information such as nutritional and allergy information for food products, reviews for electronics and games, and it’ll even find books for you at local libraries. For the savvy shopper, you can’t do much better than this.
WhatGas Petrol Prices
Thanks to the ever rising cost of petrol, there are plenty of apps that’ll point you to the cheapest fill-up station. In our experience, however, none do it better than WhatGas. The WhatGas app will use your phone’s GPS to locate the gas stations nearest you along with the respective prices at each, allowing you to choose the one that’s the best for your wallet.
Unfortunately, the WhatGas app isn’t always completely accurate as the app relies on users to report prices and data. This means that those who live in more heavily populated cities are more likely to find more accurate numbers than those who don’t. However, by using and updating prices yourself, and encouraging others to do the same, you can help make WhatGas an even more valuable resource for everyone.
Unlike the other apps on this list, Pageonce isn’t around to help you save money on things you don’t yet own. Rather, the Pageonce app helps you better keep track of and manage the money that you already have in your wallet. The app helps you conveniently track all your bills, bank statements, investments, and credit cards in a single place, and will give you reminders about due dates, balances, and even credit card rewards where applicable.
Although it’s quite evident that the app caters primarily to a US audience (sorry, Pageonce, I don’t have a zip code to give you), major UK banks such as HSBC, Lloyds, Halifax, etc. are well covered. In any case, the app can be instrumental in preventing you from spending beyond your means, which of course keeps you from incurring any undue fees, debt, and general monetary pain. In short, for anyone who ever deals with money in any form, it’s a must-have app.
Simple and to the point, the Lemon app allows you to quickly scan in your paper receipts for quick and convenient storage. The images of your receipts are then taggable and searchable within the app, which goes quite a way in helping to keep everything organized and your budget in good working order. After doing so, the app also provides you with what’s essentially an expense report, letting you see exactly how you’ve spent your money.
It’s true that Lemon is a fairly no frills app without many bells and whistles, but we’ve yet to find anything that makes organising receipts easier than this. That said, the app won’t be much use if you’re not diligent in entering in your receipts, so be sure that doing so is something you can commit to enough to make it a good habit.
That said, what are some ways you use your smartphone to save money? We’d love to hear your thoughts in the comments below!
This is a guest post from Kenny Kraisornkowit, who offers shopping advice, product reviews and ways to save money on tech gear and gadgets at Savoo.co.uk.