Over the course of the last few years, however, I have reduced the amount of paper in the household to the point that receipts are actually a significant chunk of what is left. I have been debating about the relative merits of just Instantly Throwing Them All Away (I do this if I paid cash), letting them age in a messy pile so I can dig through it if something on the credit card statement looks funny, and attempting to impose order by either returning to my old filing system (not gonna happen) or imposing some new, digital strategy on them.
And to be clear, if I am offered the option of an e-receipt, I do take that option.
I have decided to try an app. I went looking for one that looked like _all_ it did was store receipts: none of this expense tracking, deductibility, integrate with wtf, etc. or if it was there, it had to be NOT on the main line of usability. I picked OneReceipt. It has cloud functionality, so I can look at it through their website or through my app. It is free (I'm a little suspicious of that, but I'll come back to that in a minute) and it doesn't do anything suspicious like integrate with EverNote. It also offers an email address to so you can email receipts to it.
It's easy to enter receipts. There is some kind of transcription service, and I don't know if that's fancy programming or if that is a bunch of Bangladeshis (or wherever you get cheap labor currently -- maybe Morocco?) transcribing stuff in a pseudo-manual way. (If there are people in the developing world transcribing this for me, I think I want to (a) apologize and (b) I want to know how this can be free. But you know, cc numbers are not included in full on receipts so maybe I don't care too much.)
OneReceipt does have a nice merchant input system that uses your location (at least on the app). Very easy to use. I grabbed my aging stack of receipts, tossed all the one's that were more than a month old (that's the aging theory) and entered the remainder. Then I threw those away, too. My plan is to just enter stuff as it is handed to me, and dispose of it before ever putting it into my wallet. I will either update this post (possible, especially if this things turns out to be really awful) or update later on in my blog, when I've used it for a while.
There is integration with emailed receipts also, so there actually is a post-paper path forward, if this thing ever turns out to be a real business.
ETA: Oh, OneReceipt appears to be in Beta?
Lifehacker review of OneReceipt:
If you use Gmail or Yahoo (and soon Outlook?) for your email that receipts go to, you can connect that account to OneReceipt and it will grope through your email and pull out receipts auto-magically. I would do that --- except my gmail account isn't my primary, so I'd have to redirect all my shopping to that email address from my main email address AND I'd have to deal with the fact that I routinely get ereceipts that were sent to the wrong address. So, that's not gonna happen. Also, not sure I'm overjoyed about OneReceipt groping through my email? You may feel differently, in which case that might be awesome for you. I'll be using the OneReceipt email address to forward stuff to, if I decide to use this thing for all receipts, vs. just paper.
I'm a little confused, because the email that OneReceipt sent me suggests that it thinks my email with them is my first name @onereceipt.com -- but I thought it was going to be email@example.com, and I'm having trouble figuring that out for sure. I'm doing a little experimenting, starting out with username, because that is a rare email -- where as my first name @ is going to be common. It has not bounced OR appeared on the list of receipts yet. Hmmm. [I have now submitted a question and am awaiting a reply.]
2 of the receipts have been processed. Both were restaurant checks, and I never write the tip line when I am filling out my copy -- I just put in the total after the tip. But OneReceipt back-calculates what the tip was. Which is sort of interesting.
Funny transcription! TWNG CHINA OBLNG TEA -- it's Twining's Oolong tea, obvs, and equally obvs how that mistake was made. HOLY SHIT NOT A TRANSCRIPTION ERROR! Error is on the original receipt. Wow. That is humorous.