Can You Get Paid to Drive? Review of paidride.com

Will Companies Really Pay Me to Drive My Car??

You’ve seen the ads online or maybe in your email inbox: Earn hundreds of dollars per month by driving your car! Or get a free car to drive! Companies pay good money to have you drive a car wrapped in their advertisements!

Just like you, we thought it sounded good. With the price of gas what it is, getting paid to drive would be sweet! I might even drive the weinermobile if it meant more money coming in to my pocket than going out.

If you search online for get paid to drive, you find lots of companies willing to sell you a list, or access to an exclusive member’s area, where you can learn all about the advertisers who will pay you to stick their ads on your car and do your normal driving. It’s simple, you learn. A no-brainer money making activity.

We Tried Paidride.com

So we forked over the $15 to paidride.com. Our $15 bought us a “membership,” which was actually access to the site’s directory of companies that are hungry for drivers. I was imagining what kind of awesome ads companies would rush to stick on my minivan. (Car seat ads? Children’s Book Club? Trojan condoms?)

What’s Inside Paidride.com?

The membership area is a clean list of 14 US companies, three Canadian companies, and five UK companies that allegedly either give free ad cars to drive or pay you to drive an ad around on your car. The list looks good, but it isn’t what I would call high quality. The first link to the very first company is bad. The second link, to the same company’s sign up form, takes me to freecarmedia.com where I read this:

What if I PAID to find out about your company?
If you paid ANY fees to get information about FreeCar Media and our programs than you need to immediately ask for your money back. Registering with FreeCar Media is 100% FREE and always has been. There are many scams being run to capitalize on our name, so please do not be fooled.

The second company listed manufactures the vinyl wrap that goes on ad cars…it doesn’t actually hire drivers, as it states right on its website: “We do NOT offer compensation for driving ads.” Hmm…two pitches, two strikes.

And so on, and so on. I could give you a run down of each company in the directory (for one of which I need to own a semi), but it’s not necessary. I can already see the writing on the wall.

Can You Get Paid to Drive Ads on Cars?

In a word, No. Here’s why:

  • Simple numbers. How many people do you think have signed up for these get-paid-to-drive programs? Thousands, no doubt. Tens of thousands, maybe. Have you seen tens of thousands of ad cars on the road? That means the odds are not in your favor.
  • Demise of the medium. Ads on cars peaked in popularity in the 90s. They are now the domain of very specialized niche advertising campaigns, so fewer drivers are needed.
  • Demographics. Imagine yourself as an advertiser. Say you’re the ad executive for I’ve Tried That and you have a fixed budget to spend on advertising each quarter. You decide you’re going to wrap someone’s car in I’ve Tried That ads and pay the owner to drive it around. To get the most bang for your buck, you want to reach the largest possible number of people in the target demographic. That means you’re looking for a car and driver only in densely populated urban areas with lots of stay-at-home moms and others looking to supplement their income by working from home. With that in mind, are you interested in a driver living in Casper, Wyoming? Of course not. How about a driver who owns a 2000 Ford Taurus? No way. (Because Steve and Joe only want their ads on really sexy cars.)

If you don’t:

  1. live in a large city
  2. drive a cool car
  3. AND drive lots of miles every month

forget about it. Your lottery-like chances have just been reduced to zip.

Don’t Pay for Get-Paid-to-Drive Information!

Also, the common denominator I found in all the companies I looked at that actually do hire drivers was this: it is free to sign up for them, and you can find them on your own. There’s no need to pay for “an exclusive list.” There are no exclusive lists because the information is available everywhere. That’s like paying for “an exclusive list of McDonald’s restaurants in your area!” Why buy that list when the phone book is free?

One of those loooooong-shot applications could take you up to 10 minutes to fill out. In the same 10 mintues, you could respond to legitimate job ads that our ebook teaches you how to find. And your chances of being hired for those jobs are much MUCH better than the chances that Fox TV will pay you to drive an American Idol-wrapped PT Cruzer around Podunk, Iowa.

How Does PaidRide Compare?

I’ve Tried That has been reviewing products since 2007. In that time, there’s one program that stands above the rest. It’s free to get started, has no ridiculous hidden charges, and will help you build a sustainable income from home.

Click here to see our top recommendation.

Overdue final update: Financial Peace University Review

Hi, my name is Joe and I’m a slacker. I promised regular updates to my review of Dave Ramsey’s Financial Peace University (FPU), in which I am enrolled, but have failed to deliver.

I am ashamed.

To make it up to you, I’m offering a bonus: until the end of July, all new RSS subscriptions are free. That’s right, free, as in zilch. Sign up quick and take advantage of my remorse. Subscriptions after the bonus period will be at least triple the bonus price!

If you found us through a search engine and are looking for the full Monty on Ramsey’s FPU, you’ll want to start here. The 13-week course is almost half over and I can say with a straight face that I’m happy with the content and the price we paid. I’d do it again, and recommend it to others. In fact, I will do it again because my membership fee entitles me to attend refresher courses anywhere, anytime, at no additional charge. It will be good to go back again later and brush up on the things I’m less interested in right now, such as college and estate planning.

My interest wanes
The first few weeks of FPU courses were very good for me: the importance of saving, how men and women think about money differently, how to plan cash flow (or how to make a budget that works), the evil of debt and how to get out of it (not necessarily in that order). But now that we’re moving on to more advanced topics, such as insurance, investments, and estate planning, I am less engaged in the content. Don’t get me wrong—the information is just as good and just as well presented, but my personal investment in it (my motivation) is smaller. There are reasons for this, and I understand the reasons, and it’s not a fault in the course itself.

The members areaFPU members area
I should have mentioned in an earlier post about the Members Area that those enrolled in FPU get access to (image used with permission). It’s full of good resources to supplement your reading and course content, such as budget spreadsheets, debt reduction calculators, discussion forums, and so on. There is a downside: you only have access to it for as long as your course lasts and then you have to convert to a paid membership if you want to keep getting in. It would suck to do all of your budgeting and debt-reduction planning online, only to lose that work when your free access is cut.

I recommend it
My results have not been as dramatic as those in FPU’s marketing, but they are positive results. We are saving money now (weren’t before) and have a workable plan to get out of debt. No magic unicorns that poop $100 bills, but good information that will serve us well for a lifetime. In my opinion, you can head over to Financial Peace University and sign up with confidence that you’ll get your money’s worth.

CashCrate.com Review: It’s a really small crate!

I’ve Tried That reader Alfa, who recently profiled our site on her blog, Flood of Dollars, suggested that we take a look at Cash Crate, another site claiming to pay you for trying companies’ products and services. I signed up. Here’s what I found out.

Cashcrate.com functions on the same premise as Inbox Dollars and Fusion Cash: sign up for promotional memberships and offers and get paid a small fee per sign-up. It also has a referral program so that you can get paid for the offers and memberships of people who sign up “under” you.

Cash Crate shotI like cashcrate better than Fusion Cash just because it is less obnoxious in its promotional graphics and text and because the site is faster loading. You go to the members area and can choose from offers using simple text, not full-on logos like Fusion Cash uses. The screen shot shows only the first nine of many, many offers. The site also warns you which offers require a credit card to sign up for, a nice feature.

I spent an hour taking surveys and signing up for offers at Cash Crate and have earned about $3.50. At that rate, it would take me a lifetime to earn a crate full of cash unless it’s the size of a Tic-Tac box. Cash Crate pays out at $10, so I’m sure someone with more time and patience for advertising than I have could make some pizza money. Good for students, maybe? It could definitely supplement the Taco Bell fund. If you spent enough time with it, you could probably learn to work its system faster than I did and therefore make more than $3.50/hour. If you’re looking to make more than just pocket change, though, I suggest spending your time elsewhere.

How Does Cash Crate Compare?

I did a review of a program called SwagBucks a few months back and just wanted to give you guys a little update on my progress, show you how much I’ve actually made with the program, and give some tips on how to quickly start making some money with them.

A quick overview: the concept behind SwagBucks is that they’d pay you for using their search page to browse the web. They make money through Google’s sponsored results and then pass some of their earnings on to you in the form of SwagBucks. You can also make money by filling out surveys, shopping online, watching videos, and many many more ways.

All you have to do is use their search page and every so often, you’ll be awarded SwagBucks which you can redeem for cash or gift cards.

The best part is the SwagBucks search bar uses Google, so you’ll get the same results you’re used to, but now you have a chance to make some extra money. It takes no extra effort on your part either. It’s a fun way to make some extra money each month.

And you can join today and see for yourself why I rate this program so highly, absolutely for free. Plus, you get a free $5 bonus just for signing up.

There are a lot more ways to earn, but searching is by far the easiest and the quickest. You’ll see the other ways in just a minute, but first…

Proof SwagBucks Actually Pays

Here’s an inside look at most of the orders that I’ve placed with SwagBucks since I’ve joined. This is a look inside my own personal account. I’ve cashed out and received $890.00 worth of gift cards so far.

Now, there are thousands of items you can spend your SwagBucks on or you can even redeem them for cash. I chose the giftcards because they’re a little bit cheaper than the cash redemption so you get more value for your SwagBuck, so to speak. Plus, I shop at Amazon often and this really helped cut down on costs.

Here’s a look at my total earnings so far: SB earnings

1 SwagBuck roughly equals 1 penny. So I’ve made approximately $928.78 since joining!

And here’s a look at just some of my rewards so far!

SB Cashed Out

Oh, and did I mention this was all free?

The Bottom Line

SwagBucks is a scam free way to make extra money online. It’s an excellent alternative to Cash Crate and you’ll make money much faster. I’ve been a member for about six months now and I’ve been paid over $890. It’s completely free to join and will help you bring in some extra cash by doing things you already do online. What more could you want from a program?!

SwagBucks is awesome and I highly recommend you click here an create an account right now. You get a $5 bonus offer just for signing up.

Dave Ramsey’s Financial Peace University (Update 2)

Financial Peace University’s promotional website claims that its participants have on average saved $2700 and paid off $5300 in debt by the end of the 3-month course. Having nothing to lose (except money, and I lose that all the time), I paid my $90 to enroll in Financial Peace University and will tell you all about it here at I’ve Tried That. To read prior posts and updates in the Financial Peace University review, click here.

The second class last night covered cash flow planning. It’s budgeting, but Ramsey calls it “cash flow planning” to give the process a business flavor so that people will take it more seriously. For people like me, that slight change in mindset makes a big difference. Dave Ramsey puts it bluntly:

If you were in charge of managing the finances for the Corporation of You, and you managed money for the Corporation of You like you do for you, would you fire you?

I have to say that I would fire me. It’s the same idea Sabrinasmoneymatters was getting at when she said, “You are the CFO of your Household Corporation.” So, yeah, little shifts.

Last night’s lesson included something that is as close as I ever expect to get to a magic elixir for those with chronic diarrhea of the wallet: a practical system for tracking and controlling money. A way to actually make the budget work, and maybe even to get me to stick to it (the jury’s still out on that one). It’s not a new plan, and it may be a no-brainer for folks who already discipline their money (rather than it disciplining them). The super secret anti-diarrhea system? Envelopes.

It’s simple, really. At the beginning of every month, you plan out when money comes in and give every dollar a name by deciding beforehand where it will go. Straightforward budgeting stuff so far, right? But here’s the magic part: when the money comes in, you take the cash out of the bank and put it in envelopes labeled with your budget categories. The FPU kit included a booklet with envelopes, and my household budget has enough categories that we needed to use some regular ones from our closet. The effect is, for me, magical because it takes the budget out of the realm of the abstract and theoretical and puts it in the realm of the real and practical: I have envelopes and cash in my hands. I can smell it and touch it and watch it as it flows out of the envelopes in the directions we have designated. We no longer wonder where the money went; we now tell it where to go. And that’s a powerful difference. I’m optimistic about the prospects. If we can get this system to work for us, that alone will have been worth the $90. As always, I’ll keep you posted.

Update 1 | Update 2 | Final update

InboxDollars Review: A Scam? Can you get paid to read emails?

Before I start this InboxDollars review, let’s put the facts on the table:

  • We all read emails.
  • We all love money.
  • It would be really awesome to get paid to read emails.

InboxDollars promises just that and they even go as far as to make the claim that ‘Money really does grow on trees.’ But just how accurate are these claims? Can you really get paid to just read emails? We wouldn’t call ourselves professional product and program testers if we didn’t give you an answer to these questions.

You can make money, but that doesn’t mean you necessarily will make money.

Each email that you read will net you anywhere between 1 to 10 cents. But these aren’t emails you would normally want to read. They’re advertisements for various programs or products that would result in InboxDollars making hefty revenue if you followed through and signed up for the program. Aside from emails, you can also “get paid” to play games, sign up for surveys, sign up for programs, shop, and search the internet.

What you aren’t told is that you will need to start spending money first and you’ll receive a measly percentage back on your spendings. This is the hidden truth behind their “get paid to” claims.

InboxDollars Scam

Take for example, this “Deal” offered for LifeLock. You get paid $20 if you spend anywhere from $120 to $324 for a LifeLock membership.

Okay, sure, this might be a deal if you are actually interested in their service and would like some money back, but for 99% of users this “deal” is completely meaningless.

My Results

I’ve been a member for about two weeks now and I have received 14 emails for a total of $0.40 cents. That’s a little less than 3 cents per email. If we take into account the $5.00 sign up bonus and the $1.00 introduction survey, I will need to read approximately 857 more emails.

At the current rate of 1 email per day, I’m looking at over 2 years of reading email just to receive my first $30 check. I don’t know about you, but I have better things to do than click on an advertisement once a day for the next 2 years just to receive $30.

You make a lot of progress really fast early on, but according to our readers in the comments below and some of the reviews we’ve seen around the web, emails start to slow when you approach the cash out mark.

Even worse, there are reports of accounts getting closed right when they are ready to cash out. We can’t confirm these reports and InboxDollars does reserve the right to cancel your account if you violate their code of conduct.

The Real Source of Funds

At this point, you’re probably asking yourself how could they possibly make money by sending out emails. I decided to look into a few of the programs that are heavily promoted throughout the site. Take for example, eBay. InboxDollars will pay you $6.00 to sign up at eBay and place a bid. Not bad right? Wrong. They’re making anywhere between $25-$35 every time a new user signs up at eBay and places a bid.

Stamps.com is also heavily promoted at a $10 bonus just for signing up for their free trial. However, in the event you forget to cancel the free trial after a couple of weeks, you will be billed $15.99 per month and InboxDollars makes $50.

Stay far away from any free trial offers. That is where you will most likely lose a lot of money.

It sounds like users are getting the short end of the stick while InboxDollars laughs all the way to the bank.

I’ve tried that and I don’t like it.

If you have nothing better to do than to read emails (read: view advertisements) for the next few years, then by all means sign up and get started. I do feel that doing anything at InboxDollars aside from reading emails is a recipe for disaster.

In an extreme case, suppose you sign up for the Stamps.com free trial and forget about your account. In a month you will be billed and in the event that you refuse to pay you can have your account forwarded to collections which could have a disastrous effect on your credit score.

This result could yield hundreds, if not thousands, of dollars in damages all for a measly $10.

Personally, I’m closing my account.

How Does Inbox Dollars Compare?

If you’re looking for a decent alternative, I would highly suggest looking into SwagBucks. I’ve reviewed them a few months back and I’ve actually made money and was able to cash it out. and give some tips on how to quickly start making some money with them.

SwagBucks does pay you to do a number of things, watch videos, play games, answer surveys, but my favorite is that they pay you just to search the web. SwagBucks gets paid by sending you Google’s sponsored results and, as a thank you, sends some of their earnings back to you.

I’ve switched my main search engine to SwagBucks. They are using Google’s results, so you are still seeing the same exact page you’d see if you searched Google directly. But by going through them first, you can earn some extra money.

I highly suggest that you create an account today. You’ll quickly see why I recommend SwagBucks over InboxDollars. Plus, you get a free $5 bonus just for signing up.

SwagBucks Pays: Here’s Proof

I can’t make a recommendation without offering a little bit of proof that it actually works.

Here’s a look at my total earnings so far: SwagBucks Proof

1 SwagBuck roughly equals 1 penny. So I’ve made approximately $928.78 since joining!

And here’s a peek at my personal cash outs.

SwagBucks Cash Out

You can redeem your SwagBucks for a number of things, but I’ve found it’s best to go for gift cards at places you normally shop. That seems to get you the most value for your “SwagBuck” and if you are as addicted to Amazon as I am, it’s a great way to lower your credit card bill.

That’s right. I’ve been able to make over $900 and it didn’t take over 2 years of clicking links in emails.

The Bottom Line

If you’ve gotten this far, by now you should realize I’m not a fan of InboxDollars.

There are better alternatives out there that have proven track records.

I’d suggest you stick with something else.

Dave Ramsey’s Financial Peace University (Update 1)

Click here to read my first post in the Financial Peace University review.

The first class was last week and I’ve had time to let my impressions gel.
As you can see from the materials shown here, the fee (mine was $90, but prices
vary) is not for materials alone. The paper inside the fancy box is worth maybe
$25. There’s an overpriced, cheaply bound book, a mind-numbing fill-in-the-blank
“workbook,” an envelope binder for keeping the recommended envelope
system organized, some CDs to supplement the weekly class, and some materials
with which you can order lots more from Ramsey’s website.FPU1

The rest of the value comes from the class, by which I mean the video presentation. I met in a room with about 40 other people and watched a DVD of Dave Ramsey teaching the first week’s lesson. It’s a little bit slick for my taste. Too glossy, too much of a performance and a production. Ramsey is quite the performer—the presentation is interesting and entertaining to watch—but it’s spoon-fed education. There’s no exploration of ideas, no exchange. And maybe there doesn’t have to be. It’s not philosophy, after all. People who take the course paid the money because they want to know what Dave has to say, not because they want to engage in discussion. Still, it goes against every educational bone in my body. All four of them.

All that said, I am actually enjoying Financial Peace University, to my surprise. It occurs to me that I didn’t pay to get my money’s worth out of the box, or even in classroom experience. I was willing to pay $90 for the chance that Ramsey would motivate me to do what I already know needs to be done: budget, save, pay off debt, invest. As Sabrina at SabrinasMoneyMatters might say, I’m paying to create some accountability. Good information and an easy-to-use system are just icing on the cake.

I’ve Tried That | Update 2 | Final Update

Review of Dave Ramsey’s Financial Peace University

Dave Ramsey claims to teach people how to manage finances, get out of debt, save money, and make good investments. He is the author of a number of books on personal finances and has a syndicated prime-time radio show in which callers describe their financial situations and get free advice. The first website linked above is the home page of what is surely becoming an empire. I’ve tried just one little fiefdom in the Dave Ramsey financial advice empire: Financial Peace University (FPU).

It’s a 13-week course, complete with textbooks, homework, and class sessions. The class meets one night a week for two hours and teaches the basics of money management. FPU’s main claim is regarding the past success of its 300,000+ students:

On average these families have paid off over $5,300 in debt and saved $2,700 during this 91-day program!

I was skeptical. But my money management skills are those of a 12-yr-old (ooh, something shiny! Me buy now!) and I have the debt and saving rate to prove it. In short, I had little to lose. So if I could just meet the advertised averages of savings and debt reduction, that would help a lot. And I just might learn something. So I paid my $90 and enrolled in what is certainly the cheesiest-sounding university I have ever attended. The first class was last night (check back later for pictures of the materials and my first impressions). I’ll keep you posted.

Update 1 | Update 2