Last Updated on 11 January 2021 by Dan
Hello everyone! Today I’m going to introduce you to a great little tip that depending on where you shop can get you an “every single time” saving of between 1 and 5 percent on your supermarket and grocery shopping, depending on your retailer of choice
Which is fantastically helpful! Whilst it’s a small saving these are going to be products which you are going to be buying anyhow and likely need, so any kind of savings you can make on those are always useful. This is one where the savings per time are likely to be quite small, but can really add up to a big number over a year, especially if shopping for a family.
Helpfully this tip also isn’t limited to just the supermarket – there’s also some other good retailers there including commonly used services like Uber and takeaway companies like Just Eat, coffee outlets like Costa and a variety of other retailers and chain restaurants.
So what is this magic trick to save on shopping?
It’s using supermarket gift card schemes – via this trick you can effectively pick them up cheaper than their actual cash value.
This can be done via TopCashback. Now I’ve written before on this site about why TopCashback is a great money saving tool in general and I think are worth using beyond just this trick. You can read a more full exploration of how they work overall here.
If you have an account, they also have their own service called “TopGiftCards” which you can simply search for as a retailer on the main TopCashBack and click into as you would shopping normally. Illustrated below
When you buy a gift card through this service, you’ll also receive cashback in your TopCashBack account. So let’s say I buy a £100 gift card for Sainsbury’s supermarket which has 5% cashback. I’ll then pay £100 for my gift card, but I’ll also get an extra £5 in my TopCashBack account to spend elsewhere or transfer to my bank account.
Just be aware that the Supermarkets on offer and their payout rates can tend to vary at different times. At present it’s only Sainsbury’s, Asda and Morrisons online but others can appear – I’ve seen Waitrose listed in the past for example. Right now they seem to be trending at the lower end of payout at 1%-2%.
Tips to make further savings on Topgiftcards
There’s a few other cash hacks on offer to boost it even further. None of these will net much more cash, but they’re low-effort actions to get a little extra.
TopCashBack Top-Up Giveaways:
Firstly, TopCashback occasionally run top up promotions on qualifying purchases. These take the form of when you make a qualifying purchase through the site that day, they’ll give you an extra £3 on top. These are usually on an opt-in basis.
TopGiftCards do qualify as a purchase – so you can simply top up your gift card when they appear and get that extra as well!
TopCashBack Cash Out:
Once the cash hits your TopCashBack account, you can either take it as straight cash via a BACS transfer to your bank account, or you can cash it out via a gift card which also includes a payout bonus from the retailer and takes your saving that little bit further.
Combine with supermarket loyalty schemes and vouchers:
You can still gain on any loyalty schemes like Nectar when paying with a gift card, so worth taking up this as well! If you have any vouchers for products at Supermarkets, this will also
Are there any disadvantages to using TopGiftCards?
Potentially, but they’re largely self-inflicted.
Firstly remember that a gift card is essentially cash, so if you had £100 on it and you lose it that’s the equivalent of dropping £100 on the street. These arrive in e-giftcard form so they’re relatively easy to track, but it’s still a possibility if you’re not careful.
If a retailer goes bust, a voucher also becomes worthless – you are not naturally entitled to get the cash back as you’ve already bought a service. Now that’s unlikely with major supermarkets, but with some of the other retail gift cards it’s more of a possibility.
To counter both of these, I don’t recommend putting really significant amounts of cash on a gift card, and simply topping it up when you need to. It’s a little more effort, but also safer.
You also can’t buy a TopGiftCard using American Express. Now usually the gain on the gift card cashback exceeds the 1%ish that most American Express cards will reward you for spending, but if you have a promotion in place it may prove better to forget the giftcard and buy direct. This situation will be rare and exceptional.
Finally, if you’re making an online purchase, you generally don’t get additional cashback if you make your purchase via a gift card so just be aware you generally can’t double dip that way.
Are you a Sainsbury’s shopper?
Sainsbury’s run a Nectar Double Up promotion once a year – click that link to see how you can make the most of it at Household Money Saving.
And that’s it!
It’s often building in these little saving habits that can make a huge difference. This one isn’t going to make you rich overnight, but it’s lots of little bits of saving and didn’t a Supermarket once say “every little helps”?
If you’re after a particular product from a Supermarket, you can also check out what we thought of the Latest Deals Supermarket comparison tool here which can save you money too.