Swagbucks was my introduction to the world of GPTs (get paid to sites) and is the one that started me on this journey. I admit that I am a biased fan. A friend recommended it to me and I thought she was crazy. I mean really? Make money online by watching videos, playing games, taking surveys, etc.? Riiiiight. But I checked it out because I was curious and my friend has acted as a mentor for me so I gave the benefit of the doubt. I admit that my initial reaction was, “Wow. This has got to be a scam.” However, I soon discovered that it was indeed legitimate.
[RELATED: Is Swagbucks Legit?]
My first month I earned $50. My second month I earned $100. I actually find it very easy to earn with Swagbucks, which is why it remains my top GPT site. However, the amount you can earn depends to a certain extent on your personal goals and your location. My goal is $100 a month. I can do that without too much effort. There are people who earn $150-$300 a month with Swagbucks. Obviously the higher your personal goal, the more challenging it becomes. Also, there appears to be more earnings opportunities in the United States than in the other eligible countries.
If you are new to the world of GPTs, or have not yet tried Swagbucks, I highly recommend it. The site is headquartered in the United States, has been in business since 2008, and has awarded close to 50 million dollars in cash, free gift cards and prizes. The following information should help get you started:
Who Can Join Swagbucks?
People living in the following countries can join and earn money online with Swagbucks:
- United States
How Old Do You Have to Be to Join Swagbucks?
The minimum age to join Swagbucks is thirteen. There is no maximum age.
How Many People in the Same Household can Join Swagbucks?
I wish this information was less fuzzy. You’d think it would be easy to find. No so much. The most recent information I found about this was a blog posted on the Swagbucks site in 2011. In essence, each person thirteen or older in the same household can have an account. There is one account per person. Sharing of accounts or one person opening multiple accounts is grounds for deactivation (stay tuned for a post about how not to get deactivated if more than one person in the house participates in Swagbucks). However, the question about the number of people per household comes up pretty regularly on the Swagbucks Facebook page and the answer given by other members suggests that two persons max per home can have an account. I haven’t seen where Swagbucks has responded to the inquiries of their Facebook page.
How Do You Earn Swagbucks?
First, let me explain Swagbucks currency. At Swagbucks, members earn digital currency called, well, Swagbucks which are exchanged for cash or free gift cards when one has accumulated enough points. What do you do to earn your Swagbucks? One or more of the following:
- Swagbucks TV
- Swagbucks Mobile TV
- Hitting Daily Goals
- Special Offers
- Hourly Winner
- Invite a Friend
- Swag Codes
- Team Challenge
- Trade In
- Special Offers
- Birthday Bucks
What Exactly Can You Earn with Swagbucks?
SO MANY THINGS! My favorite is cold hard cash which I receive by redeeming my points for cash which is sent to me via Paypal. Just as popular, and in some cases even more so because it’s almost as good as currency is the free Amazon gift card. You can also redeem your Swagbucks for stores like Target and Walmart, Best Buy, T.J. Maxx, Marshalls, J.C. Penney, Boscov’s, Toys “R,” Us, Home Depot, Lowe’s, food and drink like free Starbucks, Macaroni Grill, Maggiano’s, Applebee’s, Morton’s Steakhouse, travel such as hotel and cruise gift cards, numerous charities… you get the idea. There is a LOT of variety.
IMPORTANT: The redemptions listed above are specifically for the United States and may vary by country. I can’t see what is available in other countries. I would hear from members in other countries so please comment below!
How Many Swagbucks Do I Need to Redeem for Money or Free Gift Cards?
It’s important to note that the explanation below is for people using Swagbucks in the United States. I would love for users in other countries to chime in, so please comment below.
It’s easiest to think of each Swagbuck earned being worth one penny. If you earn ten Swagbucks you have the equivalent of ten cents. If you earn 100 Swagbucks, you have $1.00, 1000 Swagbucks equals $10 and so on. There are a number of charities that you can donate to for as little as 5 Swagbucks ($0.05). The free gift cards start at $5 or 500 Swagbucks. Sometimes the gift cards even go on sale! For instance, last time I checked you could snag a $50 gift card to P.F. Changs for 4750 Swagbucks (or the equivalent of $47.50. COOL!).
This next benefit is so awesome it deserves its own paragraph. Amazon sells just about everything and almost everyone could put a gift card to the site to use. What could be better than a free Amazon gift card? How about a free Amazon gift card at a discount?! That’s right, Swagbucks offers $5 Amazon gift cards for 450 Swagbucks (or the equivalent of $4.50). That’s a 10% discount!! If you love Amazon.com this option is even better than money. Alas, there is a stipulation that you can redeem five Amazon gift cards per month at this discounted rate. 🙁 But, if you saved those cards for a year for gifts or something that means you scored $300 worth of free Amazon gift cards for the equivalent of $250. (Psst. If you want to to score additional free $5 Amazon gift cards, this time for a redemption equivalent of $4.75, you gotta check out the Bing Rewards program!)
As great a deal as the Amazon gift cards are, and every month I run the pros and cons of using some of my Swagbucks for the discounted cards, I always opt for cash. It just works for me. The minimum threshold for exchanging your Swagbucks for cash is $25 (or 2500 Swagbucks). There are quite a number of people who grumble about this, but I personally don’t see anything unreasonable about it. I have read about people finding sites that allowed them to cash out $1 through Paypal. I don’t see the point of that. But back to the point. Accruing 2500 Swagbucks (or points or 2500 pennies) may seem daunting at first, but it really isn’t difficult at all.
[RELATED: Swagbucks Glossary]
Whew! That was long, but I think I covered all of the basics. But there’s a lot more to learn like the Swabucks lingo, how to earn quickly, and what to know when two people in the same home have Swagbucks accounts. In the meantime, try out Swagbucks for yourself. It may just become an addiction.