Upside Review: Is This App Worth The Cash Back At The Gas Pump?

My Upside review takes an in-depth look at the Upside app, which used to be called GetUpside, to help you decide if it’s worthwhile for you to use. Are fuel prices eating up your budget? Prices for things have gone up in many areas, especially diesel and gas prices. If you’re looking for ways to…

Michelle Schroeder-Gardner

Last Updated: August 11, 2023

Disclosure: This post may contain affiliate links, meaning if you decide to make a purchase via my links, I may earn a commission at no additional cost to you. See my disclosure for more info.

My Upside review takes an in-depth look at the Upside app, which used to be called GetUpside, to help you decide if it’s worthwhile for you to use.

Are fuel prices eating up your budget?

Prices for things have gone up in many areas, especially diesel and gas prices. If you’re looking for ways to save a little bit of money, then I have a new idea that you may not know about yet, and I’m talking about the Upside app.

Upside is an app that helps you find gas stations, groceries, and restaurants where you can earn cash back on regular purchases.

The Upside app, formerly known as GetUpside, is very easy to use. You simply sign up for a free account, and then look at the map in the Upside app to find places near you where you can earn cash back on gas, groceries, and on restaurant meals.

You can earn up to $0.25 per gallon cash back at gas stations, up to 30% back on your grocery purchases, and up to 45% back when you go out to eat at a restaurant.

I did a search on my phone and saw many fuel stations which were offering $0.55 per gallon for diesel cash back, and one that even offered $0.67 cash back per gallon. I should probably tell you that we mostly use diesel for our RV.

With Upside, you can earn cash back at more than 50,000 gas station locations in the United States. This includes many popular fuel stations, such as BP, Shell, Marathon, Phillips 66, RaceTrac, Circle K, and many more.

You won’t earn a ton of money using the Upside app, but you can definitely use it to make a little cash back over the course of the year. For example, if you fill up your fuel tank four times each month and buy 15 gallons each time, at $0.25 per gallon cash back over a 12-month period, you would get $180 cash back.

And that’s for doing something that you already do!

Upside users have already earned over $300,000,000 in cash back since the app was launched, so you know that you can trust them.

You can sign up for Upside for free here. I’m also sharing a special invite code in this Upside review that you can use to earn an extra $0.15 per gallon cash back the first time you use the Upside app. My special invite code is UMN2J.

Related content: 

Upside Review

 

What is Upside?

Upside is a mobile app that was started in January 2016 as GetUpside. It changed names in 2022 and has quickly grown since it launched. Upside partners with gas stations, grocery stores, and restaurants near you that want to get you to visit them by giving you enticing offers.

Upside gives you cash back on both gas purchases and food. Over $1,000,000 is earned by Upside users each week!

Upside works at:

  • Gas stations: You can get up to $0.25 per gallon cash back on gas at 25,000+ gas stations and convenience stores across the U.S.
  • Restaurants: You can get up to 45% cash back at 17,000+ restaurants, cafes, fast food places, and more.
  • Grocery stores: You can get up to 30% cash back on groceries in select cities like Minneapolis, St. Louis, Los Angeles, Chicago, Phoenix, and Raleigh. It’s available in pretty much every major city in the U.S.

It’s available on both the App Store and Google Play. There are over 300,000 great Upside reviews on the App Store alone (average of 4.8 out of 5), so you know this app is a good one!

 

How does Upside work?

The app is very easy to use, and it only takes about five minutes to sign up and start using. Once you have your account, you simply buy the things you already need and earn real cash each time.

There’s no limit to how much you can earn, and you can still use coupons, discounts, and loyalty programs as well. So you can stack your savings, which is what many Upside app reviews say is their favorite feature!

Here are the steps to get started with Upside:

  1. Sign up for free here.
  2. Connect your cards.
  3. Find and claim your cash back offer through the Upside mobile app.
  4. Pay as usual at the gas station, store, or restaurant.
  5. Submit your receipt or check in.
  6. Receive cash back that you can redeem for actual cash or a digital gift card.

Upside is easy to use as you can see.

You can cash out whenever you want via PayPal cash, gift card, or bank transfer.

 

How do you get paid on Upside?

The way you get paid is that you cash out whenever you want via PayPal cash, gift card, or bank transfer to your bank account.

Some of the free gift card options include:

  • Amazon
  • Apple
  • CVS
  • Dunkin Donuts
  • Lowe’s
  • Starbucks
  • Taco Bell
  • Walmart
  • Target

 

Does Upside give money back?

Yes!

You can earn up to $0.25 per gallon cash back at gas stations (even more for diesel!), up to 30% back on grocery purchases, and up to 45% back at restaurants.

They also have a referral program so that you can refer your friends and family and earn even more cash back.

To redeem your cash back through Upside, you can simply go to the Upside app and click on your balance amount in the top right corner. Then click on how you want to redeem your earnings. You can choose “Your bank account,” one of the many gift cards, or PayPal cash.

Upside may charge you a fee if you are cashing out small earnings. The fees include:

  • Bank account transfer: There is a $1 fee for redemptions less than $10.
  • PayPal cash: There is a $1 fee for if you redeem less than $15.
  • Gift card: There is no fee, but some gift cards may have a minimum account that you must put on a gift card.

Now, you can skip the Upside fee if you refer one person and they are actively using Upside.

 

What gas stations can you use with Upside?

Upside app gas stations include BP, Shell, Circle K, Marathon, Phillips 66, RaceTrac, Speedway, Chevron, Exxon, Conoco, Valero, Casey’s, 76, and more.

How does Upside work for gas?

You open the Upside app, look at the in-app map to see which gas stations are offering cash back, claim your offer in the app, fill up like you normally would, and then take and submit a picture of your receipt.

 

Does Upside have a gallon limit?

Each cash back offer on the Upside app is valid for up to 50 gallons of gas or diesel.

 

What grocery stores use Upside?

Grocery stores include Piggly Wiggly, Schnucks, Save a Lot, Gelson’s, Cardenas Markets, Vicente Foods, and more.

You can also use the Upside app for your restaurant purchases at big chains, such as Dairy Queen, Denny’s, Wendy’s, Arby’s, Burger King, Papa John’s, Dunkin Donuts, and more. It does not, however, work on delivery services such as DoorDash or Uber Eats. I did a quick search on restaurants near me, and I found up to 20% cash back at restaurants that I have been to in the past – that is such an easy way to save money!

 

How long does it take to get money from Upside?

When you take a picture and submit your receipt on Upside, it takes around 10 days for the cash back to process. The delay is the most common complaint in Upside gas app reviews, but it’s because receipts are checked against a gas station or store’s transaction data to confirm purchases.

Once you put in your request to get your cash back through Upside, you should see the funds in 24-48 hours.

 

What is Upside Check In?

Check In is a feature on Upside that makes it even easier for you to get cash back. Instead of taking the time to take a picture of your receipt, you just check in. All you need to do is claim and offer and then check in once you get to the gas station, so you don’t need to submit a receipt.

This isn’t available at all businesses, only ones that have a blue lightning badge next to their business name.

Once you’ve checked in, you have 20 minutes to make your purchase.

If you accidentally purchase items before checking in, you can still earn cash back. You can simply just head to the Help area in the Upside app and let them know.

How does this work if you don’t need a receipt? Upside does this by matching your transaction data with the store’s records by using the time, amount, and the last four numbers on your credit or debit card that you used.

 

Road with text overlay that says "How To Get $180 Cash Back At The Gas Station" for an Upside Review blog post

What’s the catch with the Upside app?

Not all gas stations and grocery stores are on the Upside app. You may decide to switch up where you normally go so that you can get cash back from Upside.

Plus, remember that you do not get a discount as you are at the store or gas station. Instead, you get the cash back afterwards.

Fortunately, the cash that you earn through the Upside app never expires.

 

Why do I have to claim an offer before I make my purchase for Upside?

This is a slight downside with Upside, only because you may forget to claim an offer and not save money on your purchase!

It can be easy to forget and then have a little regret later just because you forgot such a simple step. That makes sense.

So why do you need to claim an offer as the first step?

Upside needs you to claim an offer first through their mobile app because they want to make sure that you are seeing the correct cash back amount. Offers are changed all the time, and they want to make sure you are happy with the offer that you are going to receive.

Upside also wants you to claim the offers because they want you to make your purchase within a certain time period. Gas stations and stores through Upside are constantly changing their cash back offers because it is dependent on their real-time needs.

 

Why does Upside need my credit card information? Is Upside safe?

In order to use Upside, you have to add your credit or debit card that you use to make purchases to your Upside “My Wallet.”

This is because Upside verifies your purchases with the companies that you shop at.

But do not worry. They do not see your full credit card number. They only see a part of it. All of the information you share with them, including full credit or debit card number as well as your identity, is secured via third-party encryption.

 

What else do I need to know about how to use the Upside app? 

I want to make sure I cover everything in my Upside review, so here are some other things to know when using Upside:

  • You have to make sure to claim your offer in the Upside app before you make your purchase.
  • Make sure you get a receipt because you will need to take a picture of it with your cell phone.
  • Make sure to use a credit or debit card. To earn cash back with Upside, you need to make your purchase with a debit or credit card. Unfortunately, cash, prepaid credit cards, prepaid debit cards, gift cards, WIC, and EBT are not eligible forms of payment for Upside cash back offers. Upside says this is because “Using a credit card or debit card allows us to make sure the person who claimed the offer is the one making the purchase. This way we can show businesses working with Upside that their offers for you are driving more business for them.”
  • Upside is available as a mobile app for Apple iOS (through the Apple App Store) and Google Android (through the Google Play Store)

 

How does Upside make money?

This is a common question. After all, why does Upside give people like you and me money? What’s in it for them?

Upside makes money from referral commissions. When you shop through a company that is listed in the Upside app, Upside earns money from that company.

Upside partners with nearby businesses who want to win users over with great offers they won’t get anywhere else.

Here’s exactly what Upside says: “Upside has profit-sharing arrangements with participating businesses. When we bring them a customer or a purchase they weren’t expecting (and prove it!), then together we share in the profit earned on that purchase. Users get cash back for choosing that business, and businesses get more sales. It’s a win-win, and Upside doesn’t get paid until both make money first.”

 

Is the Upside app legitimate?

Yes, Upside is legitimate. Upside is not a scam.

People across the U.S. use Upside every single day and earn cash back. According to Upside, frequent users of their mobile app save an average of $148 each year. That’s not a ton of money, but it’s enough to cover your Netflix bill for the year if you think about it like that.

According to the Better Business Bureau, Upside reviews are 4.82 out of 5.0 from over 2,800 reviews. And you can go to the BBB website to read through many of the great Upside reviews posted by real users.

 

Upside Review – Is the Upside gas app worth it?

I think the Upside app is well worth it. It’s easy to use and doesn’t take up too much of your time. There is also no fee to use Upside as it is a free app!

If you’re looking to save some more money on your everyday purchases that you make in real life, then Upside is a great app to use. You can save money at gas stations, convenience stores, restaurants, and grocery stores around the United States, and there are probably places that you already visit and spend money at where you could be saving money!

One great thing about using the Upside app is that there is no limit to how much money you can earn, and you can still use coupons, discounts, and loyalty programs as well. That means you can stack your savings by doing all of these things and save even more money.

You can download and sign up for Upside for free here. You can also use my Upside promo code UMN2J to earn an extra $0.15 per gallon bonus the first time you use the Upside app.

Do you use the Upside app? Do you have any other questions that I didn’t address in my Upside review? You can ask in the comments, and I will answer them!


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Michelle Schroeder-Gardner

Author: Michelle Schroeder-Gardner

Hey! I’m Michelle Schroeder-Gardner and I am the founder of Making Sense of Cents. I’m passionate about all things personal finance, side hustles, making extra money, and online businesses. I have been featured in major publications such as Forbes, CNBC, Time, and Business Insider. Learn more here.

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  1. If any app can help you get cash back at the gas pump, it’s surely worth using. ๐Ÿ™‚

  2. Hey Michelle,

    I had to double back around the block again with a lengthy comment this time and thank you for sharing your insightful review of the Upside app on your blog. As an avid traveler, I’m always on the lookout for new tools and platforms that can help me save money and make the most of my trips. After reading your detailed analysis, I must say that I am intrigued by the concept of Upside.

    Your comprehensive overview of the app’s features and functionality provided me with a clear understanding of how it works and what sets it apart from other travel platforms. The fact that Upside bundles flights and hotels together, offering discounts and rewards for booking both simultaneously, is certainly appealing. It’s always great to find innovative solutions that simplify the travel planning process and potentially save us some cash along the way.

    I appreciated your honest assessment of the upsides and downsides (pun intended!) of using the Upside app. While the convenience and potential savings are undoubtedly attractive, the limitations you mentioned, such as the limited number of destinations and the lack of a mobile app, are valid concerns. These areas for improvement should be considered by the Upside team as they continue to refine and expand their services.

    Moreover, I found it helpful that you included your personal experience with the app. Sharing real-life examples of how you used Upside added credibility to your review and helped me visualize the practical application of the platform.

    As with any travel-related service, it’s always wise to consider multiple options and compare prices to ensure we’re getting the best deals. While Upside seems like a promising choice, it would be beneficial to explore other options before making a final decision. I will definitely give Upside a try for my next trip and see how it compares to my usual travel booking methods.

    Overall, I want to express my gratitude for shedding light on the Upside app and providing such a detailed review. Your thorough analysis and candid insights have given me a valuable perspective on this emerging travel tool. I look forward to reading more of your informative blog posts in the future.

    Drewry ๐Ÿ™‚