Manufactured spending can be a lot of work. It certainly requires a great deal of organization and is not for everyone. I have a very simple spreadsheet for making sure I don’t lose any cards or forget to pay off credit cards, but what really helps me in the liquidation process are mobile apps. There are a very mobile apps that make it really easy to liquidate gift cards and keep track of everything during the process. Here are some of my favorite apps for manufactured spending:
1. Giftcards.com Mobile App
The Giftcards.com app isn’t quite as useful now that the company ships out gift cards with flat numbers on them. As a result, you can’t use the app to merely scan the card numbers and activate them that way. Now you’re forced to type in the card numbers, which makes this process a bit more tedious. The Giftcards.com app is still really useful if you’re expecting large batches of gift card orders and want to activate them quickly. I sometimes sit at my laptop, with my phone on hand. As one gift card activation is processing on my laptop, I use the app to activate another.
The app also comes in handy on those rare occasions when a card isn’t working at the register. I can quickly pull it up and determine that it has already been used or hasn’t even been activated. This happens occasionally and it really helps to have a tool on hand that allows me to fix things quickly without the cashier having to suspend the transaction.
2. Bank Mobile Apps
Bank mobile apps can be a great tool when you’re manufactured spending with money orders. I don’t use my Bank of America account for money order deposits anymore, but on the rare occasion when I’m too lazy to drive to Wells Fargo, I can deposit my money orders via the Bank of America mobile app. Sometimes the app doesn’t recognize money orders and I end up having to deposit them at the ATM, but other times it saves me a trip to the bank. I can’t say the Wells Fargo mobile app has been money order-friendly, but maybe I’m just using it wrong. Whatever bank you use for money order deposits – die the the mobile app a try. It can save you time by allowing you to deposit your money orders without a trip to the ATM.
3. Walmart Mobile App
I don’t usually look at my Walmart receipts too closely, but I recently noticed something that will make gift card churning much easier going forward. The Walmart app has a feature that allows you to scan and store your receipts! If you’re a heavy gift card churner, chances are you end up with a stash of receipts that you can’t get rid of until your money order deposit or bill payment clears. This is a convenient way to keep track of receipts without handling paper.
4. Google Map for Android
Lately, I find myself questioning why I’m so loyal to Apple when Android phones seem to have all the best features. Oh that’s right: I’m a late adapter and I hate change. But one thing that does make me wish I had an Android phone sometimes is the Google Map app. The Android version has a feature that makes mapping out a manufactured spending route much easier. All you have to do is enter a destination, then indicate the stores you’re looking for along that route (i.e. CVS, Walmart). This makes it much easier to figure out an efficient route if you’re stopping at multiple stores.
These have been some of the most useful mobile apps I’ve used to keep track of my manufactured spending activities. if there are any apps you think are worth mentioning, please share in the comment section.
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