Have you ever bought something only to find it discounted a few weeks later? It’s even worse if you thought you were getting a great deal at the time. If you like being a savvy consumer and saving money, this can be a serious thorn in your side.
Enter: Paribus. This app promises to save you money by monitoring your purchases at over 30 stores and negotiating a price-difference refund on your behalf. The best part about it? It’s free. If you’re looking for an unbiased Paribus review, you’ve found it!
How Does Paribus Work?
Most online stores offer a price-match guarantee, which means that if you show the product being sold at a lower price at another store, you’ll get a refund for the difference. Although this sounds like the store is doing you a favor, most consumers don’t bother with the hassle of following price changes and applying for the refund. That’s why Paribus does all the work for you.
Let’s say you bought some new bedding at Crate & Barrel for $223. A couple weeks later, the bedding goes on sale and you receive a notification that the price has dropped to $200. Paribus goes to work negotiating a refund for you and you receive notice that you got a $23 refund. And all you did was buy some sheets!
The service works behind the scenes so you don’t have to research prices after buying a product and then apply for a refund. Many customers don’t bother with this process because the amount of time spent applying for the refund might not be worth the money. The most positive thing about Paribus is that it does not require you to do anything to receive a refund!
What Else Can Paribus Do?
Another way Paribus goes to bat for you is by tracking shipping times to see if a package is delivered later than promised. If it is, the service submits a refund request on your behalf. Paribus reviews its own addition of this feature by stating the company “wanted to save people the time and effort of navigating these policies on their own.” This feature has resulted in refunds on shipping costs and full or partial refunds on the cost of the order.
Currently, Paribus offers shipment claims on Amazon and Walmart.com purchases. Amazon doesn’t offer price-match guarantees any longer, but Paribus continues to monitor Amazon shipments on your behalf for potential refunds.
How Much Does It Cost?
Paribus is completely free! Paribus initially kept 25% of refunds, but they changed that policy in September 2017 so now users keep all of their refunds. The company states on their blog that being acquired by Capital One made this possible.
What’s the Downside to Using Paribus?
Some Paribus reviews emphasize the con of the service — giving up your privacy. In order for the app to work its magic, you need to allow it to read your emails in order to find store receipts. This makes some consumers hesitant to use it, because the company claims they only look for purchases, but who knows what else they’re looking for?
You also have to give Paribus permission to read, send, and delete your emails. This can be a scary thought, but representatives from the company state that the service only reviews emails from merchant accounts that you choose to link to. In order for it to contact companies on your behalf, you need to enable it to send emails from you. This trade-off is the only way it will work.
How Much Can You Really Save With Paribus?
Does the service actually save you money? Here are some recent figures from the company:
- Paribus has identified more than $6.5 million in potential savings.
- Paribus users on laptops received an average refund of $35.
- Paribus users who bought TV’s averaged a $53 refund.
- A study from December 2016 through February 2017 showed that Paribus identified 240,000 late packages for customers.
- In one year, Paribus filed $304,377 in claims for 10,423 people in the New York City metro area.
- In the week following Black Friday 2016, Paribus filed over $180,000 in claims for its users.
- In 2016, Paribus saved over $40,000 for consumers who purchased baby products.
What Stores Does Paribus Monitor?
Currently, Paribus monitors over 30 stores including Bloomingdale’s, Macy’s, Staples, Target, Bonobos, J. Crew, Zappos, Nordstrom, Banana Republic, Gap, Walmart, Costco, Home Depot, and more.
What’s the User Experience Like?
Simply register with your email account and you’ll receive access to a dashboard. The dashboard shows stats for your purchases and any recent price drops or increases. It also shows you the status of refunds.
After registering, you need to enter a credit card, because Paribus will scan the transactions made with the card. They aren’t able to look at your statement, though, which should assuage some concerns.
How Was Paribus Started?
Founded in 2014 by two Harvard alumni, Eric Glyman and Karum Atiyeh, the name Paribus comes from ceteris paribus, which means “all other things being equal” in Latin. The app launched publicly in 2015 and was released on iOS in 2015 and on Android in 2016. In October 2016, Paribus was acquired by Capital One. The app currently has over 1.5 million users and the company is headquartered in Brooklyn, New York.
Do you think the savings from Paribus are worth giving up a bit of your privacy? If you’re on the lookout for easy ways to save, this service is definitely one of them. It’s hard to imagine making another purchase without thinking twice about signing up!