Make Money

4 Game Apps that Pay Real Money Instantly via PayPal [& 10 to Avoid]

Game Apps That Pay Via Paypal
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What legit game apps allow you to cash-out to PayPal instantly?

There are dozens of apps that promise to pay you real cash rewards. Unfortunately, many of these are either outright scams or pay you just pennies per hour (making it all but impossible to withdraw your earnings).

We started with a list of 20+ gaming apps that promised to pay you real cash prizes. But in the end, we identified just four legit game apps that pay real money.

It’s worth noting up-front that you can expect to earn about $1 per hour (on average) with even the best of these apps. In other words, this is a way to earn a little bit of cash while having fun playing games, not a real side hustle.

Best Game Apps that Pay to PayPal

To get this list we used a combination of our team’s experience with the apps, as well as factors like app store rating and minimum withdrawal amount. Most importantly, we excluded game apps that require users to purchase items or virtual currency to play, which are more often than not gambling apps in disguise.

Note: The user review data cited throughout this article was collected on February 1st, 2022. We update this article periodically throughout the year to keep the data current.

#1. Mistplay

A free app that allows you to earn rewards by playing games and providing feedback to developers.

Google Play RatingiOS RatingMinimum PayoutMinimum Age
4.4 with ‎69K+ votes4.2 with ‎80K+ votes$313

Mistplay, which is only available for Android devices, is a standalone get paid to play games app. In other words, there’s no cash-back shopping or survey aspect. It’s 100% a gaming app.

The app is commonly used by game developers to get feedback on games they’re working on. You then earn points for playing the game and sharing valuable feedback. 

Not all games have a feedback requirement, however. Often, it’s as simple as logging more time playing the game. The more experience you have playing an individual game, as well as with the app overall, the more you earn. 

Your points (which Mistplay refers to as Units) can be cashed out for PayPal money or used to purchase gift cards to major retailers.

The games available to you are dependent on your location. Raid, Words With Friends 2 and Yahtzee games are some of the more popular options on the platform. 

Download Mistplay.

#2. Swagbucks

A comprehensive rewards app with the ability to earn points by playing games (when you reach certain milestones within those games).

Google Play RatingiOS RatingMinimum PayoutMinimum Age
4.4 with ‎69K+ votes4.2 with ‎80K+ votes$313

Swagbucks is one of our favorite overall reward sites. In our in-depth Swagbucks review, we found 20+ different ways to earn money on the platform. This includes making money with surveys, cash-back shopping, watching videos, and of course, playing games. 

Users earn points that can be redeemed for PayPal cash, prepaid Visa cards and gift cards to major retailers.

There are multiple ways to earn money by playing games on Swagbucks. The most popular is by achieving a certain milestone within a game. 

For example, you can earn 8,000 points (equal to $80 in value) through the game Evony: The King’s Return, if you’re able to upgrade a general’s star to level five (as shown in the screenshot below).

Reaching in-game milestones can lead to lucrative payouts, but keep in mind that these milestones sometimes require paid upgrades or in-app purchases.
Reaching in-game milestones can lead to lucrative payouts, but keep in mind that these milestones sometimes require paid upgrades or in-app purchases.

Games that allow you to earn rewards like this are located in the Swagbucks Discover section.

Swagbucks does have the option (but not the requirement) to earn points by making in-game purchases. This is very similar to earning cash-back. But as we mentioned above, this is not a recommended way to actually earn money playing games.

Download Swagbucks.

#3. Swagbucks Live

A free live trivia game that allows you to win cash prizes.

Google Play RatingiOS RatingMinimum PayoutMinimum Age
4.6 with ‎12K+ votes4.8 with ‎22K+ votes$317

Formerly called Swagbucks IQ, Swagbucks Live is a real-time trivia game that’s open to the public.

How it works is that contestants try to answer a total of 10 questions correctly. Those who answer all 10 correctly split the day’s pot, which can get up to $1,000.

If you guess an answer wrong, you’re kicked out of that game and have to wait until the next day’s show to play again. Fortunately, you still earn a few points (credited to your Swagbucks account) for participating and getting answers right.

Download Swagbucks Live.

#4. InboxDollars

Very similar to Swagbucks (above), in that it’s a general rewards site that includes the ability to earn money by playing free games. 

Google Play RatingiOS RatingMinimum PayoutMinimum Age
3.9 with ‎107K+ votes4.5 with ‎147K+ votes$3018

InboxDollars is owned by Prodege, the same company that owns Swagbucks (listed above). There are a lot of similarities between InboxDollars and Swagbucks, in that they’re comprehensive reward apps with multiple ways to earn. 

One of the biggest differences — which is especially important for those who plan to earn only through games — is the $30 minimum cash-out.

While $30 is attainable if you take advantage of all the ways to earn on InboxDollars (e.g., surveys and cash-back shopping), it will take you many hours to reach that mark by only playing games.

There are two ways to earn by playing games on InboxDollars.

First, the platform has many free browser-based games that you can play on your smartphone. These free games include titles like Solitaire, Monkey Bubble Shooter and Candy Jam. InboxDollars shows you ads while you’re playing these games.

With these browser based games, you’re able to make money in that each time you reach a certain milestone within the game, you’re entered into a guaranteed scratch-and-win sweepstakes with prizes ranging from 1 cent to $100.

The second option is to download specific gaming apps. You’ll learn about these opportunities inside the InboxDollars app. At the time of publication, the app has an offer to earn $25 for downloading Clockmaker and reaching a certain in-game milestone. No purchase is necessary. 

Clockmaker game InboxDollars offer.
You can earn $25 from InboxDollars by downloading Clockmaker and unlocking House 15.

Download InboxDollars.

*For those in the U.K., there’s InboxPounds. The Canadian version of InboxDollars is Daily Rewards. These three apps are owned by the same company and function nearly the exact same. 

Game Apps That Didn’t Make The List

Although many of the game apps below appear on other lists around the web, they didn’t make the cut for us based on our own research and testing. Some of these apps don’t have a PayPal option, while others require you to pay to play. And some have confusing business models where you can actually lose money by playing.

  1. AppNana. While you can earn money by playing games within AppNana, there is no PayPal cash-out option with this app.
  2. Dabbl. Upon testing, we found no opportunities to make money playing games. Dabbl is mainly a survey app.
  3. Drop. It’s a cash-back app with the occasional ability to earn a few cents by playing games like Snake. 
  4. Givling. While this app has some positive reviews for iOS and Android, a CNBC article revealing a darker side to the app should give you pause about committing time and money.
  5. Long Game. While the app is legit, it’s not a way to earn PayPal cash. Instead, it’s a banking app for U.S. residents only, with the ability to earn coins playing games and entering sweepstakes. Games, however, take coins to play — which are earned through banking activities like making a direct deposit or reaching a certain savings milestone. You have to open a bank account with Long Game to play.
  6. Lucktastic. A sweepstakes app that gives you the ability to earn by playing scratch-and-win games. There’s an overwhelming number of negative reviews from users of this platform.
  7. FusionCash. While mentioned on many “best game apps” lists, FusionCash doesn’t offer any gaming opportunities within the platform (and there’s also no mobile app).
  8. MyPoints. While MyPoints is solid as an overall reward app, earning money playing games is limited to earning cash-back by making in-app purchases. You can learn more about the site in our MyPoints review.
  9. Solitaire Cube. While there is a free play option within Solitaire Cube, (known as Practice League), users consistently report that in order to win real cash you must make a deposit.
  10. Toluna. This is a company that specializes in surveys for money. While there is a gaming aspect to Toluna, currently there is only a sweepstakes game and a photobooth game.

Legit Game Apps That Pay Real Money FAQ

Can you really win real money playing games?

Mistplay is a legit app that allows you to win real-world rewards in the form of gift cards to major retailers and cash rewards via PayPal. While reward sites like Swagbucks and InboxDollars are legit, games are among the lowest dollars-per-hour tasks on those sites.

So, while you can win real money, go in with the expectation of earning about $1 per hour. And understand that to cash-out, you’ll likely need to add in other activities (such as taking surveys or cash-back shopping).

What about blockchain gaming?

Blockchain gaming platforms (also known as play-to-earn) aren’t game apps per se, but rather sites that give you the ability to earn cryptocurrencies. 

While game-playing is involved, your ability to cash-out usually requires a whole other set of skills and knowledge about blockchain technology.

If you’re interested in innovation, these games are worth checking out, as early adopters have sometimes made significant money.

You can learn more in our in-depth guide on all the ways to get paid to play games.

Are sweepstakes and scratch-off games worth it?

Looking at the reviews of these games (such as Lucktastic), users have not had a great experience. While there is an occasional winner, most report never getting enough to actually cash-out, while they’re fed a constant stream of ads.

Are mobile casino games legit?

These apps are legit in that many pay out real cash prizes to winners. Yet, just like a real casino, it’s the app companies themselves that are walking away the winners. There are better options to make money from your phone.

Final Thoughts on Game Apps to Win Real Money

If you enjoy playing games on your phone, there are some legit opportunities that exist.

However, we classified most of those we reviewed in the “too good to be true” pile.

And even with those that offer real opportunity, you have to go in with the expectation of earning very little.

Fortunately, there are some legit ways to make money playing video games, such as user testing, making money with a Twitch channel, competing in cash tournaments and starting a YouTube channel

Of course, these all require much more work than downloading an app and playing free games. But long-term, they’re the better avenue to a successful side hustle or career in the gaming industry.

R.J. Weiss
R.J. Weiss is the founder and editor of The Ways To Wealth, a Certified Financial Planner™, husband and father of three. He's spent the last 10+ years writing about personal finance and has been featured in Forbes, Bloomberg, MSN Money, and other publications.

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