We all know that self-care is important, but we often don’t want to shell out money for it when we’re trying to save. I have chronic neck and shoulder pain and treating this for free (with yoga, stretching, etc.) can only go so far.

I recently started getting massages because I found a way to get them for just $8. I do this by earning Spa Finder gift cards.

I then schedule a 30 minute massage (which costs $40). The gift card covers the $40, but I’m not allowed to put the tip on the card, so I still have to pay the 20% tip which is $8.

So…how do I earn gift cards? There are a few different ways.

*Disclosure: This post contains affiliate links. Read our full disclosure policy here.

Health Insurance Rewards

My health insurance company is absolutely terrible (awful customer service and ridiculous coverage), but their one saving grace is their rewards program.

They have a program that allows members to earn points for participating in healthy activities, like using a FitBit to track steps, getting a dental or vision exam, and playing in a sports league.

I’ve earned thousands of points (about $200 in gift cards) just for doing things that I already do anyway.

These points can then be redeemed for gift cards (including a Spa Finder gift card) or other prizes. Many health insurance companies offer similar programs to encourage members to live a healthy lifestyle (which reduces health care costs). It’s a win-win for all involved.

You’re healthier and you save money on health care costs, your employer saves money, and the insurance company cuts costs as well.

If you’re not sure whether or not your insurance company offers something like this, contact your HR department or the customer service department on your insurance card.

You might be surprised! My HR department never mentioned our program…I only found out about it when I received an email from the insurance company.

Corporate Appreciation Points

My husband works for a company that offers “appreciation awards”. Instead of providing cash bonuses, they give employees points that can be redeemed for gift cards, vacations, or other items.

My husband had some points to redeem recently, so he bought a second monitor for his computer (of course he went with an electronic item) and I “purchased” Spa Finder gift cards.

Using Websites and Apps to Earn Gift Cards

I haven’t actually tried this strategy for earning Spa Finder gift cards (I just take the cash instead when I earn money online so I can put that money toward my student loans).

However, there are several websites that allow users to earn cash (or gift cards) for completing simple tasks like purchasing an item, taking a survey, or scanning a receipt.

Here are a few of my favorite money making websites and apps!

Ebates – earn cash back (or gift cards) when you shop online. Sign up today and earn a free $10 when you spend at least $25.

Read my Ebates review here.

Ibotta – earn cash back (or gift cards) when you buy groceries or other everyday items at hundreds of popular retail stores.  Sign up for Ibotta with my link (using referral code dkoxvup) and you’ll get a free $10 welcome bonus once you start redeeming offers!

Read my Ibotta tutorial here.

Shopkick – earn gift cards with this app by completing simple tasks, such as walking into a store, scanning product bar codes, or submitting receipts. Download Shopkick with my link and you’ll receive 250 free “kicks”.

Read my Shopkick tutorial here

Inbox Dollarsearn cash or gift cards with Inbox Dollars by completing surveys and watching videos.

Finding Cheap Massages

I use these methods to get high quality spa massages for only $8, but there are plenty of other options for finding cheap massages if these methods aren’t available to you.

Here are some other possibilities:

  • Getting a free or discounted massage at a massage school
  • Finding a deal on Groupon
  • Asking about package deals or discounts for regular customers
  • Participating in massage research
  • Going to Chinatown
  • Getting a chair massage at an airport or shopping mall
  • Attending a health fair or community event
  • Finding deals during National Spa Week
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