Airtime Rewards Review: The Best Cashback Service?

I have been using Airtime Rewards for just over 3 years now and have been very impressed with the rapid development of the service and its ability to passively build cashback.

But is this unusual cashback service worth a look and should you trust it with your financial data?

This Airtime Rewards Review aims to answer the questions of how the service works, how much you can expect to earn

What is Airtime Rewards?

Airtime Rewards is a cashback scheme which works by connecting to your bank cards and then rewarding you when you spend at certain retailers.

The service differs from others, such as Quidco, in that you can earn cashback instore as well as online for many retailers in the programme.

Furthermore, cashback is paid directly as credit on your mobile phone bill, as opposed to into your bank account or as a gift card.

Rewards in Airtime Rewards
The Airtime Rewards home page showing cashback transactions

How does it work?

Getting started with Airtime Rewards is very simple. The cashback service is accessed via a mobile app on your phone which is available for both iOS and Android.

You then need to add whichever payment cards that you will use to earn rewards. Note that these unfortunately must be with Mastercard or Visa.

Airtime Rewards will then begin receiving transactional data from the retailers as part of their programme which they match up with the card in your account.

Cards do take 24 hours to be activated before you can earn cashback and you’ll get notified via a phone notification when this is completed. If a transaction is made before it is activated with the service then you will not get cashback.

After that, you simply pay as you normally would with your payment cards. Any transactions that are eligible for cashback will show in your account within 14 days (they will send a notification when they know about an eligible transaction).

How much can you earn?

As with most cashback websites, the amount offered depends largely on the retailer with them seemingly ranging from 1% – 30%, most are 3-6%. Some retailers also change how much they offer depending on how much you spend.

In terms of how much you can earn in total, it will depend on how often you shop at the retailers listed. As there is no need to manually select the retails or click through on the app, then the total can build gradually without even needing to open the service.

The service has reported that on average, their users earn £1 in cashback per transaction using Airtime Rewards and they make a purchase 3-4 times a month. This does seem about accurate with how much I have received over the years from the cashback service.

Stacking Airtime Rewards

Due to how Airtime Rewards receives their data you can combine the rewards with other cashback websites such as Quidco, TopCashback and Complete Savings.

This double stacking makes the cashback deal even better. For example:

8.5% cashback from Quidco for new The Body Shop customers + 5% from Airtime Rewards = 13.5% effectively off anything on The Body Shop.

Discount codes also don’t exclude you from using the rewards service, so any way that you can stack them will still allow you to earn Airtime Rewards cashback.

What cards and payment methods can you add?

You can add up to 10 Mastercard or Visa cards (both credit and debit) in which you want to earn cashback from to the app. Unfortunately, American Express (AMEX) is not currently supported.

Similarly, you cannot earn cashback when paying by PayPal, as the transaction cannot be matched for the retailer to your Airtime Rewards account.

According to Airtime Rewards, Curve is also not supported. However, I and others I know have had some success in receiving rewards while using Curve. This appears to vary by retailer, and you would have to add your Curve card into the Airtime Rewards app, as opposed to the underlying card.

Apple Pay, and Google Pay are supported at most merchants. However, you should check in the app before using these methods of payment to ensure you get the cashback confirmed as not all retailers support these just yet.

How long does it take to receive your cashback?

As with many other cashback retailers, Airtime Rewards is unfortunately very slow from a transaction being recorded (within 14 days) to actually being payable in your account.

I have found this can be as long as 3 months. Fortunately, you can view the status of a transaction at any point by viewing Transaction History (in the Rewards section in-app).

How do you redeem your earnings?

Simply access the Airtime Rewards app and press Redeem on the Rewards section.

Note that the minimum required amount of rewards is £10 before you can be paid into your phone’s network account.

This will then appear as a credit on your bill within 24 hours. Instructions on where to check that they have been credited for each network are available in the app.

Which Mobile Networks are supported?

All of the four main mobile networks (Three, EE, O2 and Vodafone) in the UK are supported.

In addition, the MVNOs of Asda Mobile, Giffgaff, Lebara Mobile, Lycamobile, Now PAYG, Tesco Mobile and Virgin Mobile are also able to be used.

Unfortunately, the cheaper sub brands of networks such as Smarty, Voxi, and TalkMobile appear to not be supported currently.

However, some online on unsupported networks have reported having success getting paid directly through PayPal instead of the mobile network. For this option, you need to contact Airtime Rewards support directly and request this manually each time.

Is Airtime Rewards safe and secure?

Security for Airtime Rewards
The Add Card screen of Airtime Rewards

This is an important consideration, as the service does store your card details (with the full number and the expiry date) in order to give you cashback.

Airtime Rewards are partners of Visa and Mastercard and are PCI compliant to Level 1, which is how they are able to receive the transactions from your card.

This is the highest level of payment industry security assessment and means that they are highly regulated and assessed regularly on their ability to keep your information safe.

The system also only sees the transactions which you make at the retailers who they partner with, transactions at other merchants are not seen by the service.

From my experience, I have had no cause for concern in regards to security in my three years of using the service.

Is Airtime Rewards worth using?

Yes, I consider it a must have for those interested in earning cashback on their everyday spending.

The way the service connects to your cards directly, allows you to earn cashback without really realising until you get a notification saying you have been paid!

Furthermore, this means there are no limits to claiming cashback other than spending at the shop. As a result, the cashback can be combined with any discounts or vouchers which may be excluded from other cashback programmes.

I found Airtime Reward’s customer support excellent when I had to change the number that was in the app. They replied within 24 hours, and after some security questions, changed my number very quickly.

Which retailers can you earn cashback with on Airtime Rewards?

As of writing, the below retailers and the corresponding cashback levels are accurate. However, these are only representative, as they are always changing.

This list is not exhaustive, however, I have collected the top brands to give you an accurate view of the range of partners on Airtime Rewards.

Food & Drink

Bella Italia2% or 5% on purchases over £50
Byron Hamburgers5%
Café Rouge5%
Craft Gin Club20%
Frankie & Benny’s2%
Laithwaites Wine10%
Las Iguanas2% or 5% on purchases over £70
Naked Wines10%
Papa John’s4%


Bella Italia2%
Green Man Gaming5%
Maplin1% or 2% for purchases over £100
Now Broadband35% for orders over £10


Holland & Barrett5%
MuscleFood1% or 2% on purchases over £75
Oral B6%

Airtime Rewards Referral Code

If you want to signup, and I certainly suggest that you do, then use code HYKC8HXN for £0.50 bonus when you join and an extra £1 after your first transaction within 7 days.

This also helps support the blog, so thank you!

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