College can be one of the most financially stressful points in your life. You have to balance classes, pay thousands of dollars for tuition and even more for a place to live. Suddenly, a job is necessary to help with the financial burden that is almost instantly placed on your shoulders in the transition to adulthood.

If you’re not on a college meal plan, you’re left trying to keep your belly full with limited funds. My solution for this is an efficient couponing process.

There are a few apps from different grocers that try to help with saving, but which of these different apps are actually helpful, and which should you steer clear of?



The Walmart and Target apps are the most advertised yet give you the least amount of resources to save. They do not give you digital couponing, but instead show you different deals and try get you to order online.

Both of these apps also have credit cards available for a small percentage of cash back. Target has the “REDcard” whereas Walmart teamed up with CapitalOne for Walmart Rewards. These two cards can get you up to 5% cashback whenever you make a purchase.

A pro for both apps is that they show different deals on any product they carry other than food items. You usually can’t find most of these products at a grocery store. 

All Kroger stores, like Smiths, offer the same benefits to their customers. They have a fuel point system in place where customers use a VIP card and can earn up to one dollar off of gas per month. This same card can be used through their app, or online, to charge coupons. 

This works out a lot better than the Target and Walmart apps because you don’t have to pay any fees or apply for credit cards Also, in-stores, there are usually two different prices on bigger items-- VIP cards will receive the discounted price.

If Smith’s isn’t your style, then Albertsons has a similar app where you can download coupons and get gas rewards as well. The only difference between the two stores is Albertsons offers rewards on top of gas points, where customers can get free items if they shop frequently enough. As with anything, these free items are not guaranteed but can help save quite a bit of money if accumulated enough. 

On top of this, there are a few apps that turn your receipts from grocery stores and drug stores into points toward money and gift cards. The highest-rated ones are Fetch, Ibotta and Receipt Hog. 

More people tend to favor Ibotta because of the reliance that you will be able to receive your rewards or gift cards. But all in all, the three receipt apps are trustworthy and still help with savings.

Angeline Pompeo is a freelance reporter at the Daily Lobo. She can be contacted at culture@dailylobo.com or on Twitter @PompeoAngelina