Best cashback sites 2024

We reveal the best way to help you save money while you spend

Running a car is expensive, so anything that can help you save a few quid is welcome. And an increasingly popular way of clawing back some of the money you’ll spend is by making use of cashback websites or ‘clubs’. 

These websites are paid by companies to advertise their products and special deals. If you buy through them, the site receives a commission from the advertiser and it will share some of this income with you. In theory, what you buy will cost no more than going to a conventional site or shop, and the savings you make could add up to a tidy sum over a year.

There are two big cashback players – TopCashback and Quidco – plus some smaller sites, occasionally affiliated to trade unions and other organisations, but open to everyone. We searched through the deals to decide if you should be signing up.

How we tested them

Unlike conventional products, which are easy to compare, the cashback sites vary what they offer from day to day. For the purposes of this test we looked for motoring-related cashback deals over the course of two weeks and rated the websites for ease of use and payment terms, as well as the size of the discounts that were on offer.

Before checking the prices, we cleared the cookies from our browser to ensure that the sites were always registering us as ‘clean’ customers. We also compared the deals with those available on other retailers’ websites.

Reviews

TopCashback

With more than 14 million members, TopCashback is the UK’s biggest cashback site and includes in excess of 6,000 retailers. There are plenty of motoring-related offers on the easy-to-navigate site, including 45 car-insurance providers and comparison sites, Halfords, Kwik Fit and even eBay. The headline deal of £160 off RAC cover is not quite what it seems, because there are deals that come close on the RAC’s own site, but it’s still worth doing. 

You can get the money paid directly to your bank account or PayPal, or it’s possible to get up to 25 per cent extra by exchanging your cashback for downloadable e-gift cards.

Visit the TopCashback website here…

Quidco

Quidco is TopCashback’s arch rival, and while there is some overlap in the deals offered, there are also exclusive offers on both. If you’re making a big purchase, it’s worth investing a few minutes to check who has the best offer. For example, when we checked, Quidco’s deal on RAC cover was slightly better, but it was a little worse on the AA. 

However, Quidco loses out in our test because it doesn’t offer such a wide choice of retailers, and the site isn’t as easy to navigate to find the motoring deals. It’s still worth joining, though. As with TopCashback, you can subscribe for extra discounts.

Visit the Quidco website here…

Unison Rewards

This site bears the name of the huge trade union, but is open to anyone. Closer inspection shows it is operated by the same company as the FreeCashback site, which runs several other similar cashback schemes under different names.

But oddly, the deals seem to be much better here than on the company’s own website. For example, Halfords gives 2.25 per cent on Unison, compared with 1.5 on FreeCashback. It will also give you a £10 bonus on sign-up instead of a fiver. You have to spend a fair amount before you can withdraw, though, because you only get a payout once you’ve accumulated £25.

Visit the Unison Rewards website here…

Rakuten

Rakuten works in exactly the same way as the big players, but it has just 600 retailers signed up. Plus there is no separate section for motoring, which makes it tricky to find any relevant deals, and there aren’t many of the big names such as the RAC or AA. 

However, there are some reasonable deals on car hire, including four per cent back from Avis, while Protyre gives up to five per cent, and NCP car parks up to 2.5 per cent. For many of these you also need to enter special discount codes to get the best prices. It left us thinking that it was too much like hard work.

Visit the Rakuten website here…

KidStart

We really like the sentiment behind KidStart. Instead of banking the cashback for yourself, you have it paid into savings accounts for your children. You can also badger other friends and relations to link their KidStart memberships to your child’s virtual piggy banks.

There are plenty of motoring-related retailers where you can pick up some pennies too, including the big breakdown providers, ATS Euromaster, Halfords and even online motor factors such as Buycarparts and CarParts4Less.However, the cashback amounts are tiny, with places like ATS Euromaster paying only around one per cent. The cashback on the RAC cover is just £25, too. 

Visit the KidStart website here…

FreeCashback

The FreeCashback site looks dated compared with most of its rivals, which doesn’t inspire confidence. However, it’s easy to navigate and there is a dedicated motoring section. There, you find a bizarre selection of retailers, with an airport shuttle service at the top of the list, while bigger retailers such as Halfords and Black Circles are off the page.

The deals are not that keen, either. For example, you can get just 0.5 per cent back from buying tyres at Black Circles and one per cent from Machine Mart. You’re better off sticking with the Unison site. 

Visit the FreeCashback website here…

Verdict

The only two sites that offer really worthwhile cashback amounts are TopCashback and Quidco. But the former has a bigger selection and is easier to use, so it takes a narrow win. KidStart is certainly a neat idea, but the rewards are negligible, so the only other site we’d check out before making a large purchase is Unison Rewards. 

  1. TopCashback
  2. Quidco
  3. Unison Rewards

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