Dosh Review 2023: Pros, Cons, and How It Works
Our readers always come first
The content on DollarSprout includes links to our advertising partners. When you read our content and click on one of our partners’ links, and then decide to complete an offer — whether it’s downloading an app, opening an account, or some other action — we may earn a commission from that advertiser, at no extra cost to you.
Our ultimate goal is to educate and inform, not lure you into signing up for certain offers. Compensation from our partners may impact what products we cover and where they appear on the site, but does not have any impact on the objectivity of our reviews or advice.
The Dosh App has received a lot of buzz since its official launch in late 2017.
Many who have written Dosh app reviews say it’s the cash-back app to beat. In a world where Rakuten and Swagbucks have typically dominated, Dosh has really come out of nowhere.
Its “set it and forget it” approach, an impressive list of participating merchants, and generous referral bonuses are enough to make anyone sit up and take notice.
Dosh Review: What Is the Dosh App?
Dosh is an app that gives you cash back when you make a purchase at participating outlets using your credit card. It also works with debit cards, but you have to choose the “credit” option when checking out.
Dosh is the only cash-back app that automatically sends cash back without the usual hassle involved. No coupons, no scanning receipts, no promo codes, no clicking on a special button. Just shop normally and get cash back.
Is Dosh Legit?
Here are my current Dosh lifetime earnings:
Not having to jump through hoops to earn cash back is probably Dosh’s biggest perk. For instance, I’ve been getting cash back from Exxon each time I get gas; and I didn’t even realize it until recently. The money just gets added to my Dosh account.
How Does Dosh Work?
Just download the app and link your credit card. You can start shopping at participating merchants using your credit card, and points will be added to your “Dosh Wallet” right away. Once your balance reaches the minimum of $25, you can cash out via direct deposit or PayPal.
The company has formed a partnership with major brands, merchants, companies, and hotels to help you get money back (up to 10 percent) every time you make a purchase.
As with all cash-back apps, you have to spend money to save money. If you shop a lot and live near many participating stores, then having Dosh will save you a ton of cash.
How to Make Money with Dosh
Dosh offers users several ways to make money or get cash back.
1. Earn $5 by linking your card
When you first link your credit card with the Dosh App, it’ll instantly add $5 cash to your Dosh Wallet. There’s no need to “unlock” this bonus; you get it as soon as you link your card. And you can add additional cards for more cash.
2. Online cash back
If you’re a frequent online shopper, then you’ll have a blast using the Dosh App. When you make a purchase at a participating online retailer, the amount goes straight to your Dosh Wallet.
3. In-store cash back
Bought yourself a new pair of shoes at Nike? You get 4.5% cash back. Grabbed a bite at Jack in the Box? 7% of the money you spent goes back to you. No coupon, no receipts, and no scanning involved. Just let the cash accumulate in your Dosh Wallet.
4. Travel cash back
By booking hotels using Dosh, you’re guaranteed cash back every night of your stay. Dosh partners with more than 600,000 hotels around the world. And get this: you can receive up to 40% cash back when booking a hotel through Dosh.
5. Refer friends and businesses
As soon as you sign up on the Dosh App, you’ll see the option Refer on the dashboard, where you’ll be given a referral code. You can then send this code to friends and family. If one of the recipients clicks the link, downloads the app, and links his or her credit card, you earn a referral bonus of $5.
If you could manage to get 25 friends to download the app and link a card, you’d earn $125. If you want to earn the big bucks, referring businesses to Dosh is even better. Refer a business to the Dosh App and you earn 20% of the business’s Dosh fees for two years. To become eligible, you need to agree to some terms and conditions and then fill out a form on the app.
How Does Dosh Pay You?
It’s really simple. You pay for stuff at participating stores, and a small slice of your purchase gets put back into your Dosh balance. Once you have a minimum of $25, you can cash out the balance through your PayPal or bank account. You can cash out referral fees using these same methods as well.
PayPal is more convenient for me, and I’ve never run into any issues with cashing out. See screenshots below:
Other Cash-Back Apps Like Dosh
Cash-back apps are nothing new. But unlike Dosh, other programs require you to do a lot more work before you get your cash back. But some cash-back apps have unique advantages that may be a better fit.
Swagbucks works like other cash-back apps, but you can also earn free gifts and cash for the everyday things you do online.
These include playing games, watching videos, shopping, doing searches, answering surveys, and more. You can earn points (referred to as “SBs”) to redeem for cash back by shopping online at over 1,500 retailers including Walmart, Starbucks, and Target.
You can get free gift cards to popular retailers like Amazon and Walmart by redeeming points through the Swagbucks dashboard. If you prefer cash, you can have your points converted into cash and deposited to your PayPal account.
Since its launch in 2005, InboxDollars has paid a total of $25 million to its members and counting.
Just like Swagbucks, InboxDollars rewards you for doing stuff online, such as watching TV, taking surveys, shopping, and more.
Launched in 2009, Shopkick has millions of users who regularly earn rewards for shopping both in-store and online. The company has a solid list of partners, including American Eagle Outfitters, Best Buy, eBay, and Groupon.
Like other cash back programs, Shopkick has its own rewards system. You buy an item from a store, scan a product, and you get “kicks” as a reward. The “kicks” you earn can be redeemed for gift cards or physical gifts.
As with the Dosh App, Ibotta gives you money back when you make a purchase at selected stores, restaurants, and hotels. To earn cash back from a transaction, you have to scan the receipt using your smartphone.
After taking a photo of the receipt, you need to wait between 24 and 48 hours before the money shows up in your Ibotta balance. Ibotta also offers cash back through referrals as well as special promo codes for bonus discounts.
This is probably Dosh’s biggest competitor. Rakuten (formerly Ebates) has a $10 signup bonus and sometimes has better cash-back deals than Dosh, but it’s a less flexible platform.
To get cash back from Rakuten, you must make your purchases through the app or by visiting its online portal first. You can also download its browser extension which notifies you when there’s a cash-back offer. However, there’s no rule saying you can’t sign up for multiple cash-back websites or apps, so it doesn’t hurt to add Rakuten to your shopping arsenal.
Is The Dosh App Safe?
Judging from my own experience and other positive reviews, it’s safe to use Dosh. While the product isn’t perfect, multiple online sources and personal accounts can attest that Dosh is a legitimate business.
Dosh doesn’t have the capacity to store your credit card information since all data is tokenized and vaulted using Braintree. Braintree is a division of PayPal, one of the most trusted payment platforms.
All transactions taking place in the Dosh App are SSL-encrypted, meaning that it’s highly unlikely that the data can be accessed by third parties.
Since November 2017, the Better Business Bureau has determined that Dosh Holdings, Inc. meets the agency’s standards of accreditation. The company has an A- rating.
Drawbacks of Dosh
Even Dosh has its drawbacks. Here are some of the downsides of Dosh:
- It’s only available in the U.S. As of this review, the Dosh App is only available to those who are living in the United States. The company may expand to other countries in the future.
- You can’t link credit cards you’re using on similar sites. Are you registered under the Yelp Cash Back program? If so, you won’t be able to use Dosh (with the same card, at least), as Dosh prohibits using cards on similar sites.
What Are Some Participating Dosh Merchants?
As far as participating merchants go, Dosh boasts an all-star lineup. It has Nike, Walmart, Gap, Fitbit, Sam’s Club, Callaway, Patagonia, Snapfish, Forever 21, Hilton, Jack in the Box, and more.
Here’s a partial list of participating Dosh merchants and their corresponding credit rates (note: verify these rates before making a purchase, as the cash-back percentages can change):
Walgreens – 4.5% Cash Back
Safeway – 3% Cash Back
Office Depot – 2% Cash Back
Overstock.com – 2% Cash Back
Sam’s Club – 2% Cash Back
Nike – 3% Cash Back
Home Depot – 6% Cash Back
Staples – 2% Cash Back
Walmart.com – 2% Cash Back
PetSmart – 10% Cash Back
Should You Get the Dosh App?
It never hurts to earn money back when you’re already shopping. It’s even better if you live in an area populated with businesses participating in the program. If you love to travel, the Dosh App has great hotel offers that can help you save money.
The biggest perk of Dosh over other cash-back apps is that there’s no hassle or hoops to jump through to get cash back.
More importantly, the Dosh App is not a scam. It’s a legit business that can provide long-term benefits to regular or frequent shoppers.