We can all agree that gift buying can get expensive.This is one area where I’m always looking for new ways to save money, so I was excited to learn about RebateKey. With RebateKey, you browse their selection of items – new items are offered daily – and if you buy anything you can earn up to a 100 percent refund. That’s right – FREE! Below you’ll find my experience with this service. (Hint: It’s awesome!)
When I was a kid, my mom was really into couponing and rebating. I think getting rebates was much bigger back then because I remember picking up trash off the street and bringing it home *just in case* there was an available rebate for the item. (I know, I know. I was a weird kid!) This was really before the internet was big so we’d have to go to stores in search of rebate forms. Rebates weren’t always money, either. We had lots of branded loot at our house at all times. Honestly, it was a lot of fun.
Things are different now. Sometimes I’ll use coupons if they’re convenient, but I never got into extreme couponing. You can’t find too many rebates. I kind of miss the madness. It added a sense of fun to our weekly shopping trips!
While rebates may be harder to find these days, I recently learned about a new site, RebateKey, that issues rebates (via check) on specific items you buy online. I was skeptical at first, but it really works. I felt like a kid again when my rebate check arrived in the mail!
Curious what this is all about? Here’s how to get started with RebateKey.
Head to RebateKey and register for an account. You enter your address right from the very beginning so that they know where to send your rebate checks!
Browse all of the items that are available on RebateKey.
I recommend browsing frequently as the items are always changing. While I obviously don’t recommend buying just for the sake of buying, be sure to think about things you can get like birthday or holiday gifts for less. As much as I love shopping for myself, I love saving a bit when I purchase gifts. The gift is still the same and the recipient will never know!
As you browse RebateKey, you’ll see the amount you’ll pay for an item upfront and the green indicates what your final total will be after you receive your rebate check. In the instance above, there are a couple of items for which you will receive full rebates, but then for the inflatable camping pad you’ll pay the full price of $35.95 upfront and receive a rebate check for $29.12, bringing your grand total for the item to just $6.83!
If you find something you need and/or want, click on that item. Remember, many items are available on a limited basis so if you see something you want, grab it quick or it might disappear! When you click on an item, a pop-up will appear.
When you click on the “buy product” button, you will be taken to a new screen with all of the instructions you’ll need to complete your purchase.
Click “buy product” again and you will be directed to another site to purchase the product at full price. Sites may include Amazon, Jet.com, Walmart, or others. In this instance, the item I wanted, an LCD Writing Tablet (perfect for teaching the alphabet to toddlers!), was sold through Amazon.
You have 1 hour to buy the product and report back to RebateKey. You will need to use your Order ID to confirm your purchase. Don’t postpone! If you don’t report back to RebateKey within one hour, the purchase will not be registered and you won’t receive a rebate check.
Once your order is confirmed, the rebate is automatically pre-approved and put on hold for 30 days. After that period, the seller has 5 days to approve or dispute it. The check is automatically approved if the seller does nothing. After 35 days the money is credited to your account and the check is issued.
About that 35 day hold until you receive your rebate: Why 35 days? Most online stores allow return of the items within 30 days. The check is only issued after they can confirm that you didn’t return the item so that companies aren’t paying people for returns and rebates on the same product.
That’s really all there is to it! In a couple of days you’ll receive whatever it is you ordered, and then approximately 35 days later you’ll receive your rebate check.
Right after the 4th of July I received my rebate and did a little happy dance. Who doesn’t like receiving money in the mail?!
In my opinion, RebateKey is awesome, as long as you’re using it to buy things you actually need. Browsing products and seeing what you can get for free or at a steep discount can get addicting. I found myself trying to rationalize a few different purchases, like a bamboo lap desk that’s currently on the site. My mantra: Shop wisely and enjoy the savings!
You may be curious why brands are listing their products on RebateKey. There are a couple of different reasons, but ultimately it comes down to brand awareness. Having people find your items is half the battle. If you find – and love – a product on RebateKey, then the company paying you a rebate will be totally worth it. Also, if you love the product, the company would love for you to leave a review on the site where you purchased the item, though this is by no means a requirement.
Bottom line: Whether you’re short on money or love the art of finding a good deal, you should add RebateKey to your daily repertoire of sites to check. You just never know when you’ll be able to snag the deal of a lifetime!
Do Tell: Have you used RebateKey yet? If so, I want to hear all about your awesome finds!