Advertising
Advertising

15 Apps That Let You Join the Sharing Economy

15 Apps That Let You Join the Sharing Economy

The rise of the “sharing economy” has created a budding and earnest group of micro-business owners. These mini-preneurs are your Airbnb hosts, your TaskRabbits, and your Uber drivers.

As this new frontier of peer-to-peer commerce grows, so does the list of apps that can help you take advantage of it. Here are 15 you should be aware of because they can save you time and money, or even help you make a few bucks of your own.

1. Sidecar

While Sidecar isn’t as well known as its well-funded ridesharing competition, it holds a distinction that neither Uber nor Lyft can claim: Winner of The Wall Street Journal’s 2014 review of transportation apps.

Download the Sidecar app and enter your preferences for car type, driver, fare, and ETA. You’ll pay less than you would for a cab and you have the advantage of knowing the price up front—something that’s always a bit of a mystery when you hop into a cab or even when you hail a ride on Lyft or Uber.

Background checks are required for all drivers and the company carries a $1 million liability policy in case there’s any trouble.

sidecar_screenshot0
     

    2. Yerdle 

    Yerdle is a peer-to-peer second-hand store with a unique credit system for goods changing hands. You’ll find everything from toys and electronics to tools and camping gear.

    Get items for free using Yerdle credits (currently Yerdle is giving people 250 credits for signing up), and earn more credits by giving away items you no longer want or need.

    Local pick-up is free or you can have items shipped across the US. 

    Advertising

    Yerdle

      3. JustPark 

      JustPark (formerly ParkAtMyHouse) aims to solve the problem of finding a parking space, circling the block, feeding the meter, worrying about moving your car, or paying too much for a parking space. It does this by leveraging vacant privately-owned parking spaces in your city. 

      Spaces are available at rates varying by demand from anywhere from half an hour up to six months, and JustPark says the spots in their network average 60% less than street parking.

      JustPark

        4. Vayable

        With Vayable, you can book a tour with a local expert in cities around the world. And on the flip-side, if you have a unique perspective to share about your city, you can sign up as a host and earn money showing people a fun local experience they wouldn’t get from an “official” tour guide.

        Vayable

          5. DogVacay 

          Think Airbnb, but for dogs. DogVacay (and rival Rover) connects pet-owners with pet-sitters, avoiding the need to visit a traditional kennel or dog-boarding service. All prospective hosts go through an application process that includes reference checks and phone interviews.

          Dog lovers can open their home to visiting pets and earn boarding fees ranging from $15 to $50 a night.

          Advertising

          DogVacay on the App Store on iTunes

            6. Spinlister 

            Spinlister is the peer-to-peer marketplace for sports equipment rentals, like skis and snowboards, bikes, or surfboards.

            (The common theme? Stuff you can ride.)

            Since those items are generally expensive but in use only occasionally, it makes sense to rent instead of buy—or earn some money from the gear you already have instead of letting it collect dust in the garage.

            Spinlister

              7. LeftoverSwap

              OK, maybe this whole sharing economy is going a little too far! LeftoverSwap aims to reduce food waste by connecting hungry neighbors with their overstuffed counterparts. Perhaps it will promote some new culinary adventures.

              LeftoverSwap

                8. HomeDine

                Instead of eating out in some boring restaurant while you’re traveling, fire up the HomeDine app and see what’s cooking. The premise is to join in on a home-cooked meal anywhere in the world, meet new people, and share a unique cultural experience.

                Homedine

                  9. Getaround

                  Getaround puts your car to use for you when you’re not driving it, or allows you to rent a car from someone in the Getaround network. You can set your desired rates and the company handles all the payment processing and insurance. 

                  Advertising

                  On the customer side, you may be able to find a cheaper car rental by not going through a traditional agency like Hertz, or you can use the service to test drive a car you’ve always wanted.

                  getaround

                    10. Zaarly 

                    Zaarly allows users to create their own micro “stores” to sell goods or services to their peers. You’ll find everything from handyman services, iPhone repairs, even homemade apple pies.

                    While much of the network is local or hands-on, some providers are offering “virtual” services like phone consultations or online work.

                    Zaarly  Hire the best home service experts on the App Store on iTunes

                      11. Lending Club 

                      Next time you’re in need of cash, don’t run to the bank for a loan; instead try Lending Club. Borrowers will find rates as a low as 6%, while lenders can invest in fractional ownership of a portfolio of peer-to-peer notes, and earn higher returns than savings accounts or CDs.

                      Lending Club

                        12. Fon 

                        Fon asks you to allow others to access your home WiFi network in exchange for getting free WiFi at any of the 8 million worldwide hotspots in Fon’s network. 

                        Advertising

                        fon

                          13. Poshmark

                          Poshmark helps women monetize their closet and declutter at the same time. You can list gently used clothing items for sale in less than 60 seconds with their app, and also shop for new or pre-worn items at prices up to 70% off retail. 

                          Poshmark

                            14. Postmates

                            Postmates aims to “revolutionize urban logistics” by changing how local goods are acquired, delivered, and consumed. Employing an army of on-demand couriers (primarily on bikes, but sometimes in cars), the company promises quick, low cost delivery of any local item.

                            And of course if you know your city inside and out and would love to be the next bike messenger hero, Postmates could be a money-making opportunity for you.

                            Postmates

                              15. Instacart

                              The problem with groceries is you often have to go to the store to get them, which can be time-consuming. Instacart is the personal grocery shopping service that will deliver your grocery order to your door for a nominal fee.

                              I thought the delivery fees were actually pretty attractive, starting at $3.99 when you order $35 or more, but the company also marks up the cost of the actual food as well.

                              instacart

                                Featured photo credit: Vayable via gigaom.com

                                More by this author

                                Running Out of Room in Dropbox? Here are 11 Dropbox Alternatives That Offer WAY More Free Cloud Storage 15 Apps That Let You Join the Sharing Economy 3 Weird Productivity Tricks You Probably Haven’t Tried Yet

                                Trending in Technology

                                1 20 Best Mac Apps for Productivity You Need in 2020 2 10 Best Calendar Apps to Stay on Track in 2020 3 7 Best Outdoor Security Cameras For Better Home Security 4 10 Best VPNs to Browse the Internet More Securely 5 10 Best Monitors for Your PC Under $100

                                Read Next

                                Advertising
                                Advertising
                                Advertising

                                Last Updated on November 3, 2020

                                20 Best Mac Apps for Productivity You Need in 2020

                                20 Best Mac Apps for Productivity You Need in 2020

                                Whether you use your Mac for work or just for your personal projects, you’ve likely found yourself wondering how to improve your productivity. There are only so many hours in a day, and so much mental stamina you can muster before you run out.

                                There are dozens of tricks you can use to improve your own productivity and outlook, but if you’re looking for a more objective, comprehensive fix, the best thing to do is equip your Mac with productivity apps designed to help you do more in less time.

                                This Lifehack-exclusive list has some of the best productivity apps to help you feel less tired, improve your energy, and ultimately help you get more done every day.

                                What Makes For the Best Productivity Apps?

                                Beyond productivity tips, there are dozens of productivity apps to choose from too. With that in mind, here are some of the core aspects of ideal productivity apps that have formed this list.

                                • Non-intrusive – you want a productivity app to weave seamlessly into your workflow and not cause disruptions. From using the app to the overall display, it shouldn’t cause any interruptions.
                                • Good interface – Again, you want to be able to use these apps easily and have them benefit you. The easier you can navigate around these apps, the better.
                                • Fair pricing – Many of these have free trials that allow you a good chance to test before you buy. If you do decide to pay for it, the monthly pricing plans should be reasonable for what you are getting.

                                1. Todoist

                                  Available for all iOS devices, Todoist is a note-taking and organization app that can keep you on top of all your projects—both personal and professional.

                                  Its best features are all free to use, including browser extensions, task creation, and interactive boards you can use to organize all your notes.

                                  If you want to pay the optional $29 yearly fee, you can get even more advanced features like backups and automatic reminders. Even with the free version, you’ll stay far more organized.

                                  Download: Todoist

                                  2. 1Password

                                    You may not realize it, but you probably spend a ton of time recalling your passwords, especially if and when you forget one to an app you use on a regular basis.

                                    1Password is an app for Mac that saves and remembers all your passwords for you in one place, so you can access all your favorite sites with a single click.

                                    You’ll save time and keep all your accounts secure simultaneously. A personal plan is $2.99 per month.

                                    Download: 1Password

                                    3. Bear

                                      Bear is a unique kind of note-taking app designed to make it easier for Mac users to jot down notes on the go. With it, you can create to-do lists, give yourself reminders, and outline concepts for future brainstorming sessions.

                                      It comes with many different inline styles so you can customize your notes to your personal preferences, and remember the context in which you wrote them. The core version is free, with a $14.99 per year version available as well.

                                      Advertising

                                      Download: Bear

                                      4. Hazel

                                        Hazel by noodlesoft is an automated organization tool designed for Mac that will help you automatically organize your files based on any custom rules you want to create.

                                        For example, you can set it to move untouched items from one folder into another folder labeled “action items” if they haven’t been addressed within a week. It can save you hours of organization over the course of a few weeks. A single license is a flat $32.

                                        Download: noodlesoft

                                        5. Alfred

                                          Alfred is an all-in-one app designed to save you time with Mac shortcuts and convenient custom actions. You can use it in a variety of ways.

                                          For example, you can access Alfred’s clipboard memory so you don’t copy and paste the same material over and over, or set up custom workflows to automate some of your most repetitive tasks.

                                          It’s a paid app, with multiple price points based on the features you desire.

                                          Download: Alfred

                                          6. TextExpander

                                            TextExpander does exactly what the name suggests; it allows you to type a short snippet of text, and expand that text automatically.

                                            For example, you can create a custom expansion that allows you to conjure a full paragraph you type repeatedly by simply typing a unique abbreviation. Once you get used to your custom combinations, you’ll spare your fingers from typing thousands of words.

                                            An individual account is $3.33 per month.

                                            Download: TextExpander

                                            7. Backblaze

                                              If you’ve ever experienced a crash, or theft of your Mac, you know how much time a system restore can cost you. You’ll spend hours replacing the files you lost, and lose thousands of files that are irreplaceable.

                                              Backblaze is an automated, inexpensive way to back up your entire Mac for just $5 a month.

                                              Advertising

                                              Download: Backblaze

                                              8. Keyboard Maestro

                                                Keyboard Maestro is an older app that still has the power to make your life easier. With it, you can automate any number of tasks based on a certain trigger (such as a hotkey combination, or an event like connecting to a wireless network). A single license only costs $36.

                                                Download: Keyboard Maestro

                                                9. Snagit

                                                  There are many applications for a good screen-capture app, whether you’re trying to illustrate a tech problem you have or just want to make an interesting meme. Snagit makes it easy, with built-in editing for both still images and video. A single license covers two machines, and costs $49.95.

                                                  Download: TechSmith/Snagit

                                                  10. Bartender

                                                    Bartender is the cleverly-named app that helps you clean up and organize all your menu bar icons. You can also access them quickly with keyboard shortcuts.

                                                    If you’re like most Mac users, those icons get cluttered quickly and stop you from working efficiently. It’s free to try for 4 weeks, after which you’ll need a $15 license.

                                                    Download: Bartender

                                                    11. Otter

                                                    Otter is the Mac app for the note taker who hates typing. It’s an intelligent voice-recognition system and note-taking app that will help you transcribe your conversations, keep notes during meetings, and even take contextual notes to yourself in your own time.

                                                    Best of all, it’s free to get started!

                                                    Download: Otter

                                                    12. Flux

                                                      Do you often find yourself feeling tired throughout the day, or feeling unable to get to sleep after a day of staring at your computer? That could be because of the unnatural blue light that radiates from your Mac.

                                                      Flux naturally adapts your display to emit light that matches the time of day, so you can sleep better and feel less tired. It’s also free!

                                                      Download: Flux

                                                      Advertising

                                                      13. PDFpen

                                                      If you deal with PDFs on a regular basis, you probably find yourself wishing for some kind of tool that can let you mark up those PDFs however you want. Without a dedicated app like PDFpen, this can be difficult.

                                                      PDFpen lets you edit PDFs in almost any conceivable way, giving you more power and saving you time. A single license is $74.95.

                                                      Download: Smile Software/PDFpen

                                                      14. OmniFocus

                                                        OmniFocus is all about task management. It has a clean interface that allows you to tag your tasks, schedule events, and even automate certain features.

                                                        It’s one of the most comprehensive solutions on the market, so there’s a bit of a learning curve to get the most out of it.

                                                        A standard license is $39.99, while the pro version is $79.99.

                                                        Download: OmniFocus

                                                        15. Franz

                                                          It’s tiring to switch between dozens of different chat programs like Facebook Messenger, Slack, and WhatsApp, whenever you want to have a conversation with a different contact.

                                                          Franz’s solution is simple; offer access to all these apps in one convenient package. And best of all, it’s completely open source.

                                                          Download: Franz

                                                          16. MindNode

                                                            If you’re the brainstorming type, you need an app like MindNode to help you efficiently organize your thoughts. There are dozens of tools you can use to connect ideas in a mind map, or simply jot down notes for future reference.

                                                            The core app is free, with in-app purchases available.

                                                            Download: MindNode

                                                            17. Focus

                                                              The internet is a wonderful thing, but it can be awfully distracting. And if you’re like the majority of us, you’ve interrupted work on a project because of some attention-grabbing site or bad online habit. That’s where Focus comes in.

                                                              Advertising

                                                              This app allows you to block the worst offenders with custom time limits and other constraints, so you can focus on the task at hand. A single license is $19.99.

                                                              Download: Focus

                                                              18. CleanMyMac

                                                                Chances are, your Mac isn’t working as fast as it could, thanks to gigabytes of clutter and unnecessary files on your system. CleanMyMac helps you scan your Mac, monitor its health, and ultimately clean it up—so you can handle all your tasks that extra bit faster. A single license is $39.95.

                                                                Download: CleanMyMac

                                                                19. Grammarly

                                                                  A spelling error or grammatical mistake can cost you big time. It could be the source of a worse grade on a big paper, or compromise your credibility in the workplace. Thankfully, Grammarly can help you.

                                                                  This Mac-integrated writing assistant monitors all your writing and makes live corrections, so you’re alerted to your potential mistakes before they become permanent.

                                                                  A free version exists, but the premium version will cost you between $11 and $30 a month, depending on how you pay.

                                                                  Download: Grammarly

                                                                  Focus To Do

                                                                    Focus to-do is one of the top productivity apps for your iPhone around. It even has a desktop client that you can connect to effortlessly. The app is built around two things: the Pomodoro technique and task management. It achieves these things with amazing balance. All that you have to do is create a task and then set the timer right within the app itself.

                                                                    There is also great flexibility with the Pomodoro technique as well. You can choose whether to take a 5 minute break, take a longer one, or even skip it. On the task management side, you can also create reoccurring tasks, reminders, and place a priority on tasks too.

                                                                    Download: Focus To Do

                                                                    The Bottom Line

                                                                    These productivity apps should help you squeeze more productive hours out of every day, but they aren’t the only tools you’ll have to help you find success.

                                                                    Make the time to learn about and experiment with all the life hacks that can make you more productive. By improving your devices as well as your outlook and focus, you’ll be able to get far more done in a day, and feel better doing it.

                                                                    More to Boost Productivity

                                                                    Featured photo credit: Patrick Ward via unsplash.com

                                                                    Read Next