Highest Paying Apps: Totally Free Ways to Make Money with Your Phone in 2021

The highest paying apps are those apps which reward you for doing things like playing games, taking surveys, watching videos, or doing tasks for others. These apps are available for both iPhone and Android.

If you already spend a lot of time on your phone, you might as well get paid for your effort. With a smartphone and a wide range of apps available, it’s easier than ever to make some extra cash.

According to some statistics, Americans spend 5.4 hours a day using their phones. This is a huge percentage of time. These money-making apps give you a little compensation for all that time.

One important thing is to find apps that aren’t a scam. These apps are all legitimate and are ranked at least 4 stars or higher in the Apple or Google Play stores.

While you probably won’t make enough to give up your day job, you can earn a nice chunk of extra change with some of these apps.

This post may contain affiliate links, which means I may receive a small commission, at no cost to you, if you make a purchase through a link. 

How Do You Make Money From Apps?

There are a number of different ways you can use apps to make money. Most of the following apps fall into one of these categories:

  • Taking surveys
  • Earning cash back on purchases
  • Exercising
  • Letting apps track your activity
  • Playing games
  • Selling items
  • Finding clients

What is the Payout Like?

There really are apps that pay you, but the amount of money you receive varies greatly depending on what you’re doing!

If you’re using an app to sell an item (including a service or talent), you will likely make the most money. These are the highest paying apps because you’re exchanging tangible goods for cash.

If you’re using an app to do something passive or easy, like taking a survey or watching a video, the payout will be lower. Typically apps of this nature pay in “points,” and once you receive enough points you can exchange them for a cash payout or a gift card.

Highest Paying Survey Apps

woman earning with the highest paying apps

Taking surveys is a great way to make money in your spare time. With these apps, it’s easy enough to take a survey from anywhere, whether you’re in the school pickup line or the waiting room at the doctor’s office.

Survey Junkie

App Rating: 4.1 stars

Survey Junkie is one of the highest paying survey apps out there.

Surveys generally offer 10-200 points to complete, with each point equaling a cent. Once you reach $10, you can redeem those points for a payout. With many surveys paying $2 each, it won’t take long to reach this level.

No one likes wasting their time, and Survey Junkie knows that. This company will still compensate you with points, even if you don’t qualify for a survey. That’s a perk not many other survey companies offer.

Click here to get started with Survey Junkie.


App Rating: 4.4 stars

Swagbucks is one of the best apps because it offers so many different ways to earn.

In fact, answering surveys is just one of the ways you can earn money with this app. Once you create an account, you can also earn rewards for shopping, searching the web, playing games, watching videos, and answering surveys. 

When you complete an activity in the Swagbucks app, you earn points. Each point averages about a penny, which means 100 points equals $1.00.

Because there are so many opportunities and different ways to earn points within the Swagbucks app, points can tally up quickly.

Once you get enough points you can trade them in for cash (through PayPal), or gift cards to many of your favorite retailers.

Receive 500 bonus points (equal to $5) right now just by signing up! Click here to check it out.

Inbox Dollars

App Rating: 4.5 stars

If you want to make the most money from surveys, it usually helps to sign up for several survey companies. In addition to Survey Junkie, I also recommend Inbox Dollars.

You’ll earn $5 just by signing up. In addition to answering surveys, you can also earn further money by watching videos, playing games, or even reading emails.

Read More: Best Survey Apps: Earn Extra Cash When You’re On the Go

Highest Paying Cash-Back Apps

highest-paying cash back apps

Clipping coupons isn’t the only way you can save at the store.

Whether you love online shopping, enjoy hitting the outlets, or would just appreciate a little savings on your weekly grocery trip, there are apps that help save you money.

Try some of these highest paying cash-back apps to increase your savings next time you shop.


App Rating: 4.7 stars

If you love to shop, you’ll love Dosh.

The best thing about this cash-back app is that it’s all passive. Forget shopping through a link or scanning receipts to get your money.

Once you sign up, you link your bank cards to the app. Cash back is automatically applied when you shop at one of the over 100,000 brands and businesses connected with the app.

If you shop at places like Walmart and you don’t use Dosh, you’re leaving money on the table!

Once you accumulate $25, your earnings are automatically deposited into your PayPal account.

Rakuten (formally Ebates)

App Rating: 4.3

Rakuten is similar to Dosh in that it’s a cash-back app. While you do have to shop through a link to get your earnings, it’s very easy to do. You’ll typically get a percentage back of your purchase, but the percentage offered varies greatly from retailer to retailer. As with Dosh, you’ll find many of the most popular brands and businesses on the Rakuten platform.

I’ve been using Rakuten for many years, and have accumulated over $500 in cash back during that time!

Using this high-paying app is definitely a no-brainer for me.

Click here to sign up with Rakuten and get $30 back when you spend your first $30 through the app.  

Fetch Rewards

App Rating: 4.3 stars

Fetch Rewards offers you reward points on things you purchase at the grocery store. When you’re done shopping, simply scan your receipt in the app and any applicable points will be added to your account.

One of the nice things about Fetch Rewards in comparison to some other shopping apps is that you don’t need to add products to your list before you go shopping. Instead, if you happen to purchase products that are within the Fetch Rewards system, you’ll automatically be rewarded. This saves up a lot of time on your part.


App Rating: 4.3 stars

If you’re uncomfortable with the idea of linking your bank cards to a shopping app, you may prefer to use Ibotta instead. Ibotta is another shopping app offering you cash back on your purchases.

This app is nice because you can use it for both in-store and online buying.

In order to get the reward benefits, you do need to check the app before you shop or dine to add any deals to your account before purchasing.

When you use this app, be sure to save your receipt. You’ll need to take a picture of it within the app in order to get cash back on your qualifying purchases.

Once you’ve scanned the receipt, you’ll receive your cashback in your Ibotta account within 48 hours.


App Rating: 4.8 stars

Pei is another super-easy cash back app that works when you shop.

You don’t have to log receipts or add offers beforehand. Instead, just link your debit and credit cards and receive a percentage back every time you use those cards at partner stores.

Pei is a great form of extra cash because it allows you to double-dip and receive benefits from the app on top of any cashback benefits you’re already receiving from your credit card.


App Rating: 4.3 stars

MyPoints is a paying app that offers rewards for shopping, answering surveys, and discovering in-store deals.

Once you earn enough points using the app, you can redeem them for gift cards to your favorite retailers like Target, Walmart, and Amazon.

Highest Paying Exercise Apps

highest paying exercise apps

If you love to exercise and aren’t using one of these apps, you’re missing out! Get paid for your hard work with one of these highest paying exercise apps.


App Rating: 4.6 stars

HealthyWage is one of the highest paying exercise apps. It’s an app meant to incentivize you to work out and lose weight.

After you download the app, use the HealthyWage calculator to enter your statistics and decide how much weight you want to lose. The calculator gives you a prize amount of up to $10,000. You can adjust your calculator settings until you get the payout you desire.

Once you want to proceed, you have to agree to pay a monthly amount of money for the duration of your challenge. If, by the end of the challenge, you’ve reached your goal, then you win your prize!

If not, then you forfeit any money you paid.

If you’re looking for one of the highest paying apps that also serves as a great motivator, this could be it.

Interested in learning more about how HealthyWage works? This video can help.


App Rating: 4.7 stars

Lifecoin rewards you with virtual coins every time you exercise. This could be doing something as simple as walking around the block.

The app uses a GPS tracker to clock your miles, so you won’t make any money if you simply run on a treadmill. Still, this is a great choice if you do like to head out for a run or a walk every day.

Read More: 15 Free Apps that Pay You to Walk: Make Money Exercising

Highest Paying Gaming Apps

highest paying gaming apps

Who doesn’t love playing games?

If you find yourself playing games on your phone as a fun way to kill some time, don’t do it without getting paid. Check out these highest paying game apps for the chance at making some money.


App Rating 4.1 stars

Mistplay is one of the highest paying gaming apps. Choose from one of the video games offered on the platform, and win rewards as you play. Rewards are offered in the form of points, which you can redeem for prizes within the app.

Swagbucks LIVE

App Rating: 4.6

Yes, this is part of the Swagbucks family, but this app is exclusively for playing trivia games. Test your trivia knowledge with a real-time trivia show, and play for the chance to earn a huge payout.

Highest Paying Service Apps

woman making extra money shopping

It’s no surprise that the best money making apps are those in which you can get hired to perform a service for someone else.

Check out these top apps to find out how you can make money in this way.


App Rating: 4.8 stars

Looking for some babysitting jobs? The Bambino app can help. Create a profile on this app and you’ll be able to connect with local parents who need childcare help.

In order to create your account, you must agree to a credit check and a background check. You’ll also need a Facebook account.

The amount of money you make will depend on the rates you set, but many babysitting jobs average between $15 to $20 per hour or more.


App Rating: 4.9 stars

Find dog-walking jobs quickly when you use the Rover app.

Rover connects pet lovers for hire with people who need care for their furry friends.

After you create a profile on the app, you set up your profile with the dates your available and types of dogs you’re willing to care for. On average you can make $17 per walk.

Dog walking isn’t the only way to get paid on this app. You can also use it to find jobs as a dog boarder or pet sitter.

Instacart Shopper

App Rating: 4.8 stars

Sure you can buy groceries using the Instacart app, but you can also use it to make money.

Use the Instacart Shopper app to deliver groceries and other household items to people in your community.

Depending on how much you work, you could make hundreds of dollars per month. This makes Instacart one of the highest paying apps available.


App Rating: 4.5 stars

Want to perform freelance services for others but don’t want the hassle of setting up your own business? You’ll love Fiverr.

This money paying app is all about connecting you with people who may need your services.

As a freelancer using this app, you can offer anything that you think might be helpful to someone. This might mean writing a song, creating a logo, or taking a picture.

The possibilities are really endless here (check out the app to see what I mean!).

Gigs start at $5 (hence the name), but you can also charge more if you think you deserve a higher paycheck.

As with any freelancing gig, it’s all about marketing yourself and getting clients. Once you make a name for yourself and get some good reviews, you could make a very significant chunk of money per month.

Some people earn thousands per month, making this one of the highest paying apps out there.  


App Rating: 4.1

Shipt is another grocery shopping app which you can use to provide shopping services for someone else. You’ll connect with a buyer within the app and then receive a list of what you need to get and where you need to buy it. You’ll then deliver the purchases to the buyer’s address.

Working as a shopper in this way is definitely a side hustle that takes more than a few minutes of your time, but it also comes with the potential to make a lot more than many of the other money paying apps.

DoorDash – Driver

App Rating: 4.6 stars

Use the DoorDash Driver app to earn some extra cash delivering food.

DoorDash is one of the best restaurant delivery apps.

It only works in select cities so it may not be for everyone, but if it is in your area you could make an average of $15 to $25 per hour delivering takeout orders.

In order to be a driver, you must be at least 18 years of age and have a car, scooter, or bicycle.

Highest Paid Selling Apps

highest paying selling apps

Another great way to make money is to use apps to sell your items. Selling items helps you to declutter, while bringing in some cash at the same time.

These top-rated selling apps are a good place to start.


App Rating: 4.5 stars

Foap is an app that enables you to take and sell pictures and videos right from your phone. When a brand or agency sees a photo that they like and want to use, they can purchase it.

Of course, in order to make extra cash this way you do need to offer high-quality work.  Foap offers a 50/50 split on all profits. Because each photo can be purchased many times over, this does add up over time. The bigger your portfolio and the higher-quality work you produce, the more you stand to earn.


App Rating: 4.7 stars

If your closets are overflowing and you need some extra cash, Poshmark is a must-have app. This is a selling app, so the money you make is totally dependent on how much you’re able to sell, and the prices that you sell it for.

To list an item, simply snap a good quality picture of it and upload it using the app. You can then write a description and set a price.

People who are most active on the app are more likely to see their own items sell. Make sure to like and follow others in order to get the best results with this money paying app.


App Rating: 4.2 stars

Decluttr is one of the best selling apps for making money from your phone.

Use the app to scan your CDs, DVDs, books, Blu-Rays, and games. You can all sell used technology, like old cell phones or tablets. You’ll be given an instant offer price for your items.

If you like the price that is offered and want to sell, you can send in your items for free with Decluttr’s free shopping process. You receive your payout via PayPal, direct deposit, or check the day after Decluttr receives your shipment.


App Rating: 4.2 stars

Get rid of your stuff locally with the letgo app. With this marketplace app, you can list anything you want to sell, at whatever price you deem fair.

Connect with buyers in your local area to sell your items. Letgo is also an easy way to score some really great deals on secondhand items as a buyer.


App Rating: 4.8 stars

Turo is a completely different money-making app altogether.

That’s because you can use it to rent out your car to people who need a lift for a few days. It’s an effort to skirt the traditional care rental companies altogether and instead connect people who need a car with those who have one sitting in the driveway.

If you have a car but don’t use it that often or are willing to give it up for a few days in order to make some extra money, this could be a great side gig.

Turo does offer up to $750,000 in liability insurance backing each trip, so you can breathe a little easier about letting a stranger behind the wheel of your car.

Final Thoughts on Using Apps to Make Money

Using these apps to make money is a great way to earn some extra cash, but unless you’re using them to perform a service for a client, you probably won’t be making big bucks.

Money-making apps are just one way to diversify your extra income streams. If you’re looking for more ways to put extra cash in your pocket, check out these other income ideas:

make extra money from your phone with the highest paying smartphone apps. Earn extra cash with these Android and iPhone apps

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