PrizePool Review (2024): Is PrizePool Legit?
PrizePool logo and app

PrizePool Review (2024): Still Worth It?

Over the past few years, there have been a growing number of apps that have sought to make saving a bit more fun (or at least not as painfully boring).  Among those is a neobanking prize-linked account aptly named PrizePool. After first coming across PrizePool a few years back, I’ve been a regular user ever since — and have seen the app evolve a bit in that time.

So, how does PrizePool work and is it worth taking a chance on? Let’s take a look at what this unique banking account has to offer.

What is PrizePool and How Does it Work?

Signing up and banking partnership

In order to sign up for PrizePool, you’ll first need to provide your full name and email address as well as create a password. Then, you’ll be required to provide additional information including your date of birth, address, and Social Security number.

Like many financial apps, PrizePool partners with a full-fledged bank in order to provide FDIC insurance. In this case, deposits are held with Evolve Bank & Trust. As a result, funds are FDIC insured up to $250,000 per depositor.

It’s also worth noting (in light of recent events) that PrizePool’s relationship with Evolve Bank & Trust is a direct one, with the bank Evolve retaining data on PrizePool users(which is key for reconciliation).

Linking accounts and transfers

Also akin to several other apps, you can link your existing bank accounts to PrizePool using the tool Plaid. If you’re unfamiliar, Plaid allows you to log into a given account in order to securely link it. Once you do this, you’ll be able to set transfers from your account to PrizePool.

One thing that’s annoying to me is that, at this time, PrizePool only allows you to link one bank account at a time. Furthermore, in order to change the account you have linked, you need to contact them using the “Chat with us” function. I’m sure there’s a good reason for this but, to me, it seems like an unnecessary hassle. I’d much prefer the ability to link multiple accounts and arrange transfers from any of them. Alas, this is currently not possible, but I hope that it’s something that could be added down the road.

Anyway, when it comes to transfers, you can set up one-time deposits or arrange for scheduled transfers. With this latter option, you can elect to have money deposited to PrizePool on a weekly, monthly, or every two weeks basis. It seems as though these options come with baked-in transfer dates (1st of the month for monthly, Mondays for weekly, and the 1st and 15th for every two weeks), so I wish this was a bit more flexible. Still, if you want to get into the habit of regularly moving money to savings, then this could be a good option.

Earning tickets

The entry tickets you’ll earn for PrizePool’s weekly drawings are based on your account balance. For every dollar you hold in your account, you’ll earn one ticket per day. These ticket earnings will then continue to accrue over the course of a week.

So, for example, if you have $200 in your account, you’d earn 200 tickets per day. This would mean that you’d earn 1,400 tickets per week — which you can either enter into that week’s drawing or hold onto. Plus, since tickets are earned daily, any deposits you make will be reflected in your ticket accrual quite quickly.

If you’re confused about how many tickets you’re earning, you can always tap the info icon next to your ticket balance in the PrizePool app.

Bonus ticket opportunities

Beyond the tickets you earn for holding a balance with PrizePool, there may be other ways to score entries. For example, as I’m writing this is May 2024, I have a Boost Your Savings offer where I can earn 2,500 bonus tickets if I raise my account balance to at least $350. These types of deals can be found in the Missions section of PrizePool’s main tab, so keep an eye out.

Referrals

Speaking of bonuses, PrizePool offers incentives to those who get their friends to join the app as well. When you refer someone to the app and they use your code, they’ll win a 10% bonus on their winnings and you’ll earn 10% of their win as well. And this isn’t a one-time bonus — it applies for as long as you’re both still using the app. So, if your referred friend wins $100 one week, they’d actually pocket $110 and you’d win $10 as well.

To find your referral code, just scroll down to the “Invite Friend” section of your dashboard. By the way, if you’re interested in joining PrizePool, feel free to use my referral link or referral code: KBV6X.

Drawings Prizes

PrizePool drawings take place every Friday afternoon at 2 p.m. ET. At that time, account holders can open the app and shake to reveal their prize. Once upon a time, PrizePool offered three weeks of smaller contests followed by a larger one on the fourth week. However, this has since been simplified, with $5,500 currently being given away each week. This breaks down as such:

  • $500: 1 winner
  • $100: 15 winners
  • $20: 50 winners
  • $10: 150 winners
  • $2: 500 winners

Your winnings will then be transferred to your PrizePool account. What’s even better is that you’ll then begin earning tickets based on your new balance. 

PrizePool Special Offer
Looking to get started with PrizePool? For a limited time you can get a 10% bonus when you win if you open a new account with this Fioney link.
Bonus Offer

In the event that you don’t win any cash prizes, you’ll be awarded bonus tickets instead. Like with your normal ticket accrual, the number of bonus tickets you can win is based on your balance. 

It’s worth pointing out that, since these are cash prizes, you may be required to declare winnings on your taxes. According to PrizePool’s FAQ, those who win over $600 (either at one time or in total throughout the year), will be sent a 1099-MISC form. Although those whose winnings amount to less than $600 per year won’t be sent a 1099, the app advises that customers claim winnings as income on their taxes per tax code. If you have more questions about this aspect of PrizePool, it’s probably best to consult a tax professional.

Savings Bonuses

Regardless of whether or not you end up winning a cash prize, you may still be able to see your PrizePool balance grow thanks to their monthly Savings Bonus. At this time, your Saving Bonus is equal to 0.30% APY and is paid out on the last day of the month. However, while these bonuses function very similarly to interest, PrizePool notes, “The Savings Bonus is not bank interest, is not an annual percentage yield and is solely an obligation of PrizePool.” Regardless, these Savings Bonuses are a nice feature even if they don’t amount to a whole lot. 

Debit card

Like so many other FinTechs, PrizePool now also offers its own debit card product. With this card, you can earn bonus tickets with each purchase you make. Specifically, for every $1 you spend, you’ll earn 100 tickets. These tickets will automatically be entered into that week’s drawing. 

On top of that, when you make purchases with your PrizePool debit card, there’s a chance that what you bought will be free. For each transaction, there’s a 1 in 20 chance that you’ll earn 5% back — and a 1 in 400 chance that you’ll earn 100% cashback. This benefit is capped at $2,000.

Admittedly, while I have the PrizePool debit card, I haven’t used it very often. Instead, I prefer to just earn tickets “the old fashioned way.” Still, between the bonus tickets and the chance to win cashback, it’s an interesting offering at the very least.

Stacked (paid account)

Lastly, since I initially reviewed PrizePool, the platform has launched a paid premium feature called Stacked. With this upgrade, you’ll not only earn more tickets but will also increase your odds of getting cashback on your debit purchases. Plus, you’ll earn a solid Savings Bonus on your funds.

Here’s how the perks of Stacked stack up against the free version of PrizePool:

  • Savings Bonus: 4.50% (versus 0.3%)
  • Debit card cashback odds: 1 in 10 for 5% back (versus 1 in 20) and 1 in 200 for 100% back (versus 1 in 400).
  • Referral bonus: 20% of referred customer’s winnings (versus 10%)
  • Ticket accrual: 2 tickets per $1 per day (versus 1 ticket per $1 per day)
  • Debit tickets: 200 tickets per $1 spent (versus 100 tickets per $1 spent)

So, what will you pay for these bonus benefits? Currently, PrizePool Stacked costs $10 a month.

Final Thoughts on PrizePool

It’s now been few years since I first opened a PrizePool account. In that time, I’ve managed to win a grand total of $70.14, all while starting from a balance of just $120. Granted, $49.79 of that comes from referrals — although, I only have 4 referrals, so that’s a pretty strong return from a modest number of people.

When I initially joined PrizePool, I noted that I thought it had a slight edge on the similar-sounding but surprisingly different Yotta Savings. Since then, the gap has only widened, with PrizePool pulling way ahead in the race. That’s why it’s my personal pick between the two.

At the same time, despite enjoying the account overall, I’m not ready to go “all in” on it. For example, I still have yet to embrace their debit card product. Moreover, while the perks of Stacked do sound attractive, the $10 a month price tag is steep. While you might hit the jackpot by winning a big prize (thanks to your bonus tickets) or scoring cashback on debit purchases, it does sound like quite a gamble at that price.

All in all, through the changes that the app has made, I’m still a fan of PrizePool overall and look forward to checking my winnings each week. So, with many good years under its belt, here’s hoping PrizePool is able to keep the party going.

Frequently Asked Questions
Q:
Is there a minimum balance for my PrizePool banking account?
A:

There are no minimum balance requirements with PrizePool. Furthermore, there are no account service charges or other fees.

Q:
What are the prizes in PrizePool?
A:

PrizePool’s grand prizes go as high as $500, while other cash prizes range from $2 to $100 each week. 

Q:
How do PrizePool drawings work?
A:

Each week, PrizePool compiles all of the eligible entry tickets and draws prize winners, starting with the largest prize amount. As winners are chosen, other tickets from the same user are removed as users can only win one prize per drawing.

Q:
Is PrizePool FDIC insured?
A:

PrizePool deposits are held with Evolve Bank & Trust. As a result, funds are FDIC insured up to $250,000 per depositor.

Author

Kyle Burbank

Head Writer ~ Fioney
Kyle is the head writer for Fioney. He is a personal finance nerd, constantly looking for new apps and services to test and incorporate into his own financial game plan. In addition to his role at Fioney, he's written for other publications including Born2Invest, Lifehack, and Laughing Place, as well as his own site Money@30. He also creates personal finance and travel-related videos for Fioney's YouTube channel, which has garnered more than 2 million views. Currently, Kyle resides in Springfield, Missouri with his wife of 10 years. Together, they enjoy traveling (including visiting Disney Parks around the world), dining, and playing with their dog Rigby.

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