Cashrewards set up covert social experiment via two ‘bills-boards’ made out of $10k in real $5 bills to test consumer trust.

? Cashrewards

In a time of cost of living pressures, data hacks, and online misinformation, Australia’s leading cashback platform, Cashrewards, set-up a social experiment to test public scepticism of being given free money in real life. Would Aussies think it’s too good to be true or stuff their pockets?

Over two days in Sydney’s Parramatta and Bondi, two billboards, or ‘bills-boards’, made up of $10k in real $5 notes, mysteriously popped up overnight with hidden cameras set up to capture public reactions.

Around a quarter of passers-by decided to walk past the bills-boards without taking any cash for themselves. When asked why, many suggested that they thought there must be some sort of catch, or they didn’t have time. Overwhelmingly, about three quarters of locals decided not to pass up the opportunity to get their hands on some free cash, with over 500 people deciding to take a handful of $5 notes over the two days.


Financial expert and author Melissa Browne highlighted that Australia’s scepticism with cashback platforms is misplaced. “Australians have been brought up on the points reward system and the old adage “if it sounds too good to be true, it probably is” so, naturally free cash for your shopping sounds like something they should be wary of. Cashrewards rewards you for shopping and puts real money back in your account. Why wouldn’t you use it?”

Cashrewards Chief Marketing Officer Nicole Bardsley said: “Our “real Bills-board” was a fun way to highlight that Cashrewards is not too good to be true. We wanted to show Australians how much money they are leaving on the table by not using Cashrewards. Roughly only 11% of Australians use a cashback platform and we’ve already given over $100 million back to customers so there’s much more money to be saved.”

Cashrewards is gearing up for another busy Christmas period kicking off tomorrow with Black Friday. In 2021, Cashrewards members received over $850k in cashback on Black Friday alone, with even more money expected to be given back this year. Retailers with boosted cashback offers this year include Apple, Myer, Liquorland, Sephora,, The Iconic and more, with up to 30% cashback.