Managing tons of bills and recurring payments is an unfortunate (but necessary) aspect of modern life.
But there’s no need to go at it alone—apps can automate and keep track of your bills for you. In this article, we’ll compare two of the best bill management apps on the market: Rocket Money and Cushion.
By the end, you’ll know which one is the best fit for your needs.
What Is Rocket Money?
Rocket Money (formerly Truebill) is a financial management app with a mission to “empower people to take control of their finances.” To do this, they offer features like automated bill tracking and payment, as well as subscription cancellation services.
Since the app was launched in 2015, it has established itself as one of the most popular bill management apps on the market. Currently, 3.4 million users rely on Rocket Money to help them stay on top of their finances.
Rocket Money Key Features
With Rocket Money, you can view all of your subscription expenses from a centralized dashboard rather than sifting through your bank statements.
All you need to do is connect Rocket Money to your bank accounts—the app will automatically identify your subscriptions and recurring payments.
Rocket Money also offers spending insights to help you make better financial decisions. These insights are generated based on your previous spending patterns.
For example, if you’re on track to spend more on non-essential expenses, Rocket Money can send you an alert reminding you to be mindful of your spending.
Rocket Money also offers a bill negotiation service to help you save money on your monthly expenses.
This service is provided by a team of expert negotiators who will contact your service providers on your behalf and try to get them to lower your rates.
Rocket Money Pricing
Rocket Money is a free-to-use app.
That said, there is a Premium plan for those who want access to additional features, like:
- credit monitoring
- balance synching
- premium chat
- cancellations concierge
- custom categories
- unlimited budgets
The price of the Premium plan is up to you—strange, I know. Rocket Money allows members to choose the cost of their plans on a scale of $3 to $12 per month (with $3 and $4 plans billed annually).
Bill negotiation isn’t included in the Premium plan, but can be accessed for an additional fee of 30% to 60% of the amount you save with the service (again, they let you pick).
Keep track of your subscriptions, automate your savings, budget your spending, and more using Rocket Money.
Rocket Money Pros & Cons
- Incredible Value: There aren’t many free finance tools out there with the range of features that Rocket Money has.
- Automated Tracking: Rocket Money makes it easy to track your bills and spending with automatic transaction categorization.
- Customer Support: Some users have complained about the quality of customer support.
- Pricing Model: The pay-what-you-want pricing model for the Premium plan could be confusing for some users.
Check out our full review of Rocket Money.
What Is Cushion?
Cushion was founded in 2016 as a bank fee negotiation tool. Users would sign up for the service, and Cushion would negotiate their bank fees on their behalf (similar to Rocket Money’s bill negotiation service).
Through this service, they began to notice a pattern—users were almost always hit with fees when they forgot about recurring payments. This inspired the team to pivot their focus and develop a tool to solve that problem.
Today, Cushion is an all-in-one platform for managing bills, Buy Now Pay Later (BNPL) payments, and recurring payments.
Cushion Key Features
Automatic Bill Identification
Unlike Rocket Money, Cushion identifies your bills and recurring payments automatically by scanning your bank account rather than having you input your bills.
Once you’ve connected your bank account, the app will do its best to find where you can save, including bank penalties and fees. When it does find a fee, the app will get in touch with your bank via chat or email and do what it can to dispute those fees and get you a refund. Sometimes it works, sometimes it doesn’t. Also, the app has been known to miss some fees. Just keep in mind it isn’t perfect, at least not yet.
Recurring Payment Management
Like Rocket Money, Cushion offers a subscription management service that helps you keep track of your recurring payments through a clean, modern dashboard. But Cushion’s additional subscription management features are definitely more robust.
With Cushion, you have complete control over the payments that come out of your account. You can set up autopay, make one-off payments, and even pause subscription payments to avoid overdraft fees.
With the rise of apps like Clearpay and Klarna, more and more people are using BNPL services to finance their online purchases.
Cushion supports these services by helping you keep track of your BNPL payments and make sure they’re paid on time. This feature is particularly useful for those who are worried about accruing interest on their BNPL balances.
Cushion Pros & Cons
- Robust Payment Management: Cushion offers a wide range of features for managing your payments, subscriptions, and bills—far more than Rocket Money.
- BNPL Support: Cushion is one of the few bill management platforms that offers support for Buy Now Pay Later services.
- Paid Service: Cushion isn’t free to use—there’s a monthly or annual subscription fee.
- Lacking Supplementary Features: While Cushion is good at what it does, it’s lacking a few basic features like spending insights and credit monitoring that are included in Rocket Money’s Premium plan.
Cushion App Pricing
Cushion offers the first scan for free. Any scans after that will require that you sign up for their yearly subscription called Fee Genius, which costs $4.99 per year. This tier simply identifies possible places where you can save and leaves it up to you to decide whether it’s worth your time to dispute on your own or not.
If you don’t want to dispute it yourself and would rather have Cushion do all the work for you, there’s an option to have them implement their Fee Negotiation feature while will cost you 39% of any savings they are able to net you. This is in contrast to Rocket Money’s bill negotiation fee of 30-60%.
Which Bill Management App Is Best for You?
Ultimately, both Rocket Money and Cushion are great bill management apps. However, the app that is best for you will depend on your specific needs and preferences.
I know that isn’t an especially helpful answer. So, to help you make the call, I’ve come up with a few reasons for choosing one product over the other.
Choose Rocket Money if…
- You need budgeting features in addition to subscription management features.
- You want an app that offers advanced features (like credit monitoring and balance synching).
Choose Cushion if…
- You only want to manage recurring payments.
- You need BNPL support.
In Conclusion: What I Would Recommend
If you’re looking for a bill management app with robust budgeting features, I recommend checking out Rocket Money.
While it doesn’t have all the bells and whistles of Cushion when it comes to recurring payment management (no BNPL support or payment pausing), it more than makes up for it with its comprehensive budgeting tools.
With Rocket Money, you can see your entire financial picture in one place—including your net worth, spending insights, and credit score. This holistic view of your finances is invaluable for anyone who wants to get a handle on their finances.