Posted by Chuck on January 18, 2019
Deals

Published on January 18th, 2019 | by Chuck

61

Ibotta $3.99 Monthly Inactivity Fee if you Don’t Redeem an Offer for 180 Days

Ibotta now deducts $3.99 from your account balance each month from inactive accounts. An account is defined as inactive if it hasn’t redeemed an offer in 180 days.

Here’s the relevant section from the terms:

6.7. Account Maintenance Fees. There are costs associated with the creation and maintenance of your Ibotta account, and those costs are covered by the fees Ibotta earns when you redeem Offers. Therefore, if you have redeemed at least one Offer during the past 180 days, your account will not be assessed any account maintenance costs. If, however, you do not redeem at least one Offer during any 180 day period, Ibotta will deduct from your Ibotta account, on a monthly basis, the lesser of (i) $3.99 USD, or (ii) the amount then reflected in your Ibotta account (in either case, an “Account Maintenance Fee”). No Account Maintenance Fees will be charged or deducted during the first six months after you initially register for your Ibotta account. Ibotta will attempt to notify you before any Account Maintenance Fee is deducted from your account, or if the Account Maintenance Fee amount changes, by sending you an email to the address we have on file for you. Subject to Ibotta’s right to terminate your account under these Terms, Ibotta will stop charging your account for Account Maintenance Fees for six months if you redeem at least one Offer. Under no circumstances will you ever pay an Account Maintenance Fee with anything other than amounts in your Ibotta account – we will never ask you to make a payment for Account Maintenance Fees with credit or debit cards, checks or cash.

Not sure if an online portal purchase counts as ‘redeeming an offer’, but I assume it does. Getting a referral bonus does not count.

Ultimately, you either want to keep your account balance at $0 which will keep it fee-free, or you want to have some sort of activity every 6 months. They do have a $20 minimum to cash out so it’s not always an option to keep your account balance to $0.

Let us know in the comments of easy things to do to keep your account active, especially if you’re aware of any recurring ideas. Check out our review of Ibotta here.

 



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MisterBill
MisterBill

They generally have an “Any offer” for 10c-25c each week, so you can always submit your grocery receipt for that to keep the account active. Of course it assumes you shop at a supermarket that Ibotta supports. There was also a 25c “Any Appetizer” offer valid at any restaurant that I submitted several times last month. Of course, I also do normal Ibotta offers.

Paul
Paul

Yea they make it fairly easy to stay active.
The fee still sucks tho.

Steve

I wonder if the “Any Item” and “Any Brand” offers count as activity for this. They don’t count for bonuses. Probably the money for the “Any Brand” offers come from Ibotta themselves, rather than from manufacturers, so redeeming them doesn’t help Ibotta make money. But the terms about Account Maintenance Fees don’t exclude those offers, so I guess they count.

MisterBill
MisterBill

I would expect it counts. And yes, I misspoke when I said “any offer”, should have been “Any Item”.

There are also offers on different wines and beers, purchased either at retail or at a bar/restaurant.

Mike Advantage
Mike Advantage

That’s some B.S right there. Time to cash out.

MisterBill
MisterBill

You should always cash out as soon as you hit $20 (the minimum). You never know when they will decide that you’ve done something wrong (even if you haven’t) and freeze your account. That is true for all of these programs, although Ibotta seems to be more active in the freezing of accounts.

I’ve read posts from people on a FB group saying “I’m using it as a vacation fund so I am not cashing out”. Wrong. Put it in Paypal and leave it there as your fund.

qmc
qmc

Don’t leave money at paypal either… open a savings account (high yield preferred, using info from this site of course, but even earning 0% is safer than leaving it with paypal) and transfer the money there.

Jack
Jack

Why PayPal? I always have several hundred in there from various rebates and don’t have it linked to any bank accounts. I use it to buy things from ebay and various other retailers. In ten years I’ve never had an issue. Though my nephew has, but his is linked to a bank account.

Steve

Or they go bankrupt and don’t pay anyone. That’s happened before with several similar businesses, though Ibotta has been around a while and maybe is less risky.

A drawback of always cashing out when you reach $20 is that you might later get stuck at $10 or $15 and not find new offers to get you above $20 again; and you lose the ability to cash out quickly if it looks like they’re going out of business soon. So sometimes I wait until around $40 and then cash out $20.

Drivesabrowntruck
Drivesabrowntruck

What a bunch of bunk, thanks for the heads up.

bax
bax

That clause has always been there, as far as I could remember.

Eddy Cue
Eddy Cue

I like Ibotta but this is some BS. What kind of costs are there for maintaining an account?
It’s relatively easy to redeem an offer every 6 months though – itunes purchases, any item purchases from grocery stores/pharmacies (CVS, Star market etc depending on your location) should count but the annoying part is the $20 min cash out. I currently have about $50 in my account but should really cash out

Ibotta User
Ibotta User

As soon as I get above $40, I always redeem back down to $20 — so that I can always cash out the remaining balance.

Eddy Cue
Eddy Cue

great suggestion! thanks!

Steven
Steven

Out!

Trevor
Trevor

They’re always were a scammy borderline useless company.

MisterBill
MisterBill

Depends on what you use it for. If you redeem the grocery offers they are far from useless. Even their mobile shopping deals can be good. Not sure what is scammy about them.

Celia
Celia

Pretty easy to do, at the very least an any receipt offer, every six months. At least they’ll notify you. I would think that anyone who intends on using ibotta would avoid any inactivity fee pretty easily.

TBH, I cash out every $20. I don’t trust they’ll be around too long.

I had bought Steak and Shake gift cards from BJs and when I went to use them, activities fees had eaten most of the balance. Though my state doesn’t allow inactivity fees on gift cards, NJ, where BJs is located, does. And they had activated them long before I bought them.

bax
bax

Well, even the cashier in CVS knows about ibotta, when I mentioned I have an app that pays me for submitting receipts (when in fact it’s Receipt Hog), so I think ibotta would be around a bit in one form or another.

Celia
Celia

I’ve cashed out over a grand so it’s been good. My observation is more on the increased lockouts and clawbacks of bonuses and rebates. It may stick around but it will probably be a shell of what it once was.

I do like that I don’t have to activate before buying. It’s simple to come home and go over the receipt after shopping, and seven days afterward. That makes it unique.

Mikey
Mikey

Actually you’re supposed to activate before buying. I occasionally did what you are doing and got an email which stated that if I continued doing it my account would be closed. I sense that Ibotta doesn’t check every single submission and compare it with an activation time. But the concept is to incentivize your purchase by influencing your decision in the first place, not reward you after the fact for something you bought anyway. And they do “spot check” randomly which is why you’ll sometimes see your earnings show up as pending. You may have been lucky in the past. But I suggest if you enjoy Ibotta you “post-activate” as little as possible, if at all.

Amy
Amy

Yep, I second this as I’ve been told by their customer service that while you can upload receipts for prior purchases (up to 7 days), they really intend for you to purchase items after activating the offers. (I’m surprised they haven’t gotten rid of this ability yet.)

Celia
Celia

I probably activate 10% of offers beforehand, never been told otherwise, first I’ve heard of that actually. If that starts, or they start requiring store loyalty linking, I’ll probably stop using. Nothing good lasts forever.

The most I’ve been burned on is rebates disappearing while I was in the store, activated or not.

Steve

In general I agree with “don’t trust they’ll be around too long”, though Ibotta has been around for over 5 years, so they seem relatively stable.

Edward
Edward

Can I close my account? What will happen to my $6? Such a pain to hit$20…

SideshowBob233
SideshowBob233

You lose the $6.

Fish
Fish

Just got email from Uber eats. I’ve rarely been targeted so I wonder how this one’s being targeted.

3FREE19 — Free delivery on 3 orders

This discount expires at 11:55pm PT on January 31, 2019. It covers the booking fee, but not food, drinks, other order items, applicable taxes and fees, or tips. Other fees and/or a minimum basket size may apply. The user must receive this email directly from Uber to be eligible and apply the promo code in the app before completing their order.

Fish
Fish

feelsdownvotedman

Rowan
Rowan

Thanks so much for sharing! I applied it within the app even though I don’t recall getting the email… This will help my Platinum credit buy lunch for two of us instead of just one this month.

nomis
nomis

ibotta offer me 10 cents weekly to scan a receipt/any item, then i have to wait to reach $20 to cash out, it was good or better as new user, but its no longer worth my time to search, scan, wait, cashout etc. So i am done with scan receipts for now unless they increase the offer price

MisterBill
MisterBill

That offer comes back, so you can get 20c a week if you have another receipt! And I often get the offer for 25c instead of 10c.

Also, Ibotta takes receipts up to 7 days old.

nomis
nomis

yes, i know that and sometimes i got 25 cents too, but my husband said he will give me $1 instead if i use that time to hold him or look at him, lol

Sheila
Sheila

That’s funny. Sometimes I feel it is quite pity too but a quarter can feed the meter for 15 minutes so I continue to do it.

MisterBill
MisterBill

It can also put you over the threshold needed to cash out.

Linda
Linda

Your husband sounds thirsty. 😄

Ron
Ron

I don’t know if others have faced it but Ibotta has repeatedly rejected my receipts when you are submitting an exactly 7 days old receipt although the receipt date is within the date range shown at the time of submission. They email you next day that receipt is “too old” (total bs). It is a glitch in their system perhaps but they won’t admit it and fix it. And now this time to cash out and say bye bye

atexit8
atexit8

I am one of many who “lost” their link to their Paypal account. I had it for two years, but when I tried to cash out the money two weeks ago, the link was not there anymore.

Then apparently, because of what I tried to do to get the Paypal linked up, my account was locked.

After 9 days, they finally unlocked my account, but getting it linked to my Paypal account still did not work. I had an error message about wrong email address. Tried it twice. I was afraid of making more attempts in case that would get my account locked again.

I ceated a Venmo account and transferred my money out that way. I don’t use Venmo, but I wanted the money out of Ibotta.

They are messed up.
You can only transfer money out using their app, and their app is buggy.

I have now uninstalled my Ibotta app. No more!

I am sticking with eBates and TopCashback.

MisterBill
MisterBill

They unlinked Paypal a few months ago and made you relink them. I noticed when doing so that they linked to the main email address associated with the Paypal account. When I saw that, I linked my wife’s Ibotta account to a separate Paypal account in her name rather than chance them noticing that both Ibotta accounts were going to the same Paypal account. Used to be you could send it to one of the other email addresses you could have associated with the Paypal account.

Sometimes the Paypal link goes away on the weekend when they are doing some sort of maintenance. If you haven’t looked to see if it’s back recently, I suggest you do so. Of course, Venmo is also a reasonable option, if not as convenient if you never use it for anything else.

atexit8
atexit8

Tried the Paypal account on a weekday.
Did not work.
Done with them.
I never received any email about the Paypal unlinking which they should have done for something that important. Expecting us to notice that Paypal was unlinked is ridiculous.

MisterBill
MisterBill

You would have noticed if when you went to cash out, not sure what the big deal is. And given that Venmo is still available, you could still get cash,

I’ve done very well with Ibotta, but I do mainly grocery offers. I only do online shopping when there is a bonus for using it (or when they had 9% back on Hertz a while back). If you’re just using it for mobile/online shopping, then probably not worth it.

Ale
Ale

Is it ibotta taxable?

potatoslayer
potatoslayer

I doubt it. It is a rebate and requires a purchase. It would be like being taxed on using a coupon.

MisterBill
MisterBill

Rebates on purchases are not taxable.

Ale
Ale

Chuck so the dont send you a 1099 or something like that?

Ryan Goldstein

No, I’ve been using Ibotta for years and have never received a 1099 from them.

Ace Malik
Ace Malik

I had completed the apron offer and they have failed to remit payment, to top it off they charged this inactivity fee

Klemhuzzah
Klemhuzzah

On the bright side, IBOTTA did send me an email warning me to use my account or be charged an inactivity fee. I had long ago decided Ibotta wasn’t worthwhile for me, especially since they kept rejecting my upload receipts. The email got me to cash out.

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