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Save money and shop smart with these apps

ShopSmart: October 2012

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Illustration: Kirsten Ulve

The world is becoming more and more electronic every day. Everybody and their uncle has an app or a website for something or other. So how do you know what’s cool, what’s safe, and what’s worth your time? We’ll tell you! In the November issue of ShopSmart, we feature must-see sites and must-have apps that will all save you money and time when you go shopping. We also have updates on some our old favorites, like Amazon, eBay, and Google.

Here are five free apps from our must-have list. Try them out, and then check out the November issue, on newsstands now! For more from ShopSmart, visit our website.

Amazon mobile is a great tool for shopping on a smart phone. Quick barcode scanning and picture search make it easy for you to find what you’re looking for or to check prices, and checkout is a breeze. Amazon mobile is available for Android, Apple, and BlackBerry.

Cardstar is best for organizing your loyalty cards. You can get rid of all those bulky store loyalty cards and grimy key chain tags as Cardstar puts all of this info neatly into one app. You show your phone to the cashier in stores to save, and local deals may pop up while you're in a store. Cardstar is available for Android, Apple, and BlackBerry.

Coupon Sherpa helps you grab hundreds of coupons for dozens of stores. You have a good chance of finding a deal on this app for the store you’re heading to and cashiers can scan directly from a phone. Grocery coupons can be applied directly to loyalty cards for several chains, so the savings automatically comes off the bill. Coupon Sherpa is available for Android and Apple.

Redlaser is an eBay owned barcode-scanner app that can find you great deals. You can scan items and find the best price locally and online or buy stuff and arrange for pickup at participating retailers. Redlaser can help you take advantage of price-matching policies at stores such as Target and Walmart and is available for Android, Apple, and Windows.

Shopkick automates rewards. You can earn points (called kicks) just for entering participating stores. The kicks can be redeemed for a reward such as a free drink at Starbucks or a Coach bag. You can link credit or debit cards to earn even more kicks. Nationwide partners include ExxonMobile, Macy’s, and Target. Open the app when walking in or by a participating retailer to claim available rewards. Shopkick is available for Android and Apple.

—Kenrya Rankin Naasel, contributing editor

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