I like to do most of my holiday shopping online, but it seems nearly impossible to avoid going to the mall for last-minute gift items. I may shop swiftly and diligently, but no matter what I try, I always end up spending a long time waiting in line—especially during the holidays. Happily, in the last couple of years I've become better about using that frustrating wait time productively—with money-making apps! Here are the best apps you want with you when you are at the back of a very long line—at the mall, the grocery store or anywhere!

1. Screen Pay

Screen Pay is an Android-based app you can use to earn cash every time you swipe open your device. There are three ways to earn:

  • Use the app yourself and add additional interest (the more interest you add, the more you can earn through viewing targeted ads).
  • Invite friends to use the app.
  • Offer more information about yourself.

What to do:

  • Visit: http://screenpay.com
  • Download the app for Android.
  • Set your interests to receive targeted ads.
  • View ads every time you swipe your device open, plus click to open interesting ads to earn more.
  • You get $1.00 just for signing up. Then you earn a minimum of $3.00 per month for using the app (adding more interests can increase your earnings). You can earn $5.00 more for each referral who uses the app for at least 30 days.
  • When you have accrued a minimum of $7.00 you can cash out to your PayPal account.


2. Ipsos i-Say

Ipsos i-Say is one of many apps offering payouts for taking surveys. But here’s what’s different about i-Say—and why it deserves a place in your "mall line free time apps" folder.

  • The app comes from a company that is long established as one of the world's leading survey-based research firms (6 million surveys worldwide conducted annually)—so it’s totally stable and legitimate (no scam worries here).
  • The rewards are varied and substantial, with extra points awarded for long-term app use.

What to do:

  • Visit: http://www.i-say.com
  • Click "Join Now."
  • Complete your free registration.
  • Open the website in your device browser at any time to participate in polls, surveys and contests that earn you points.
  • 1,000 points = $10 (or 250 points = one contest entry).
  • Redeem points for prepaid Visa cards, Amazon cards, iTunes cards, charitable donations, or to your PayPal account as cash


3. The "KCL" fab five (Ibotta, Checkout51, Snap, Berry Cart, Shrink)

Here at KCL we really love our money-saving and -earning apps! Depending on which type of line you’re standing in, you will want to keep these five KCL favorites fired up and ready!


4. Instant Rewards

Instant Rewards is an iOS-based app that lets you earn for watching videos, taking surveys or completing offers. The app comes with a 4.5/5 rating and fast, easy payouts.

What to do:

  • Visit: http://instantrewardsapp.com
  • Download the app.
  • Register for your free account.
  • Begin earning.
  • Cash out to PayPal as cash. Or, choose from Amazon, Walmart, Starbucks, Best Buy, Target, and other gift card-based cash out options.


5. Perk

Perk takes mobile app-based rewards several steps further—this isn’t just an app that helps you earn. This is a "mobile rewards program." Perk has a whole family of apps to help you earn for pretty much everything you use your smart device to do.

  • Perk Pop Quiz!
  • Perk Shopping
  • Perk Search
  • Perk Screen
  • Perk Browser
  • Perk TV

What to do:

  • Visit: https://perk.com and download the app(s) for your device.
  • Register to create your free account.
  • Begin using the apps(s) of your choice to earn.
  • Cash out your points to gift cards (Amazon, Target, etc.), airline miles, charitable donations, or Paypal cash.
  • Cash out tokens if you want to enter sweepstakes (win bigger prizes like iPads, $100 gift cards, etc.). You can purchase tokens with your points. 


6. Fronto

Fronto is similar to SlideJoy—the Android app permits you to earn by swiping your device open. The app gets high marks from users (4.1/5) and their stated goal is to help users earn at least $20/month.

What to do:

  • Visit: http://www.fronto.co
  • Download the app.
  • Register for your free account.
  • Begin swiping to view articles, promotions and offers.
  • Earn for every swipe and cash out for PayPal cash, Amazon gift cards, charitable donations.
  • 2,500 points = $1 and your cash out is instantaneous.


The 6 Best Earning Apps to Have When You’re Waiting in Line at Checkout