Put Down That Wallet: 25 Valuable Items That You Can Get Completely Free of Cost
Before whipping out that credit card, take note that one doesn’t need to fork over hundreds of dollars a month for basic necessities as varied as diapers, meals, and even some car repairs. At the end of the day, many of the most sought after everyday items can be had completely free of cost. However, getting these items free isn’t as easy as going into a store and taking them. Read on and find out how get the best deals.
1. Music Lessons
It isn’t uncommon for someone to sit back at work, class, or even at their very own desk at home and daydream about rocking out on stage in front of all their peers. However, people aren’t made of money and music lessons can be rather pricey. One also has to keep in mind the quality of the teacher they might get.
Thanks to the power of the internet, those excuses can be tossed into the trash bin. MusicTherory.net provides music lovers with free lessons on music theory. Hoffman Academy and Drum Ambition has free tutorials and sheet music for beginners. To top that off, there are a ton of free apps and websites out there.
2. Smoke Detectors
The National Fire Protection Association has gone on record saying that three out of five individuals who pass in house fires didn’t have functioning smoke detectors in the home. Given the horrific circumstances that stem from such issues, some states have made it illegal to live in a home without a smoke detector.
That said, one doesn’t have to go to their local department store and fork over $15 for a smoke detector. All they really need to do is go over to their local fire department. Most firehouses will give you a free fire detector and even go to your house and install it for free. They also provide free battery replacement services.
3. Free Treats For Your Furry Friend
While having a dog comes with a ton of amazing perks, there is one big downside and that’s the money you’ll spend raising your dog. Yup, these pups can be quite pricey. Thankfully, dog fanatics can subscribe to BringFido’s email list and receive sample toys, food and even doggy shampoo.
Furthermore, if you want to pretty your pooch up, try taking him to your local veterinary school. They may offer free basic grooming services for your dog like hair brushing, nail clipping and even toothbrushing. All you need to do is call up your local dog shelter and ask them about some veterinary schools in your area.
4. Free Preventive Care
Given the high price of medical insurance, some folks opt for not seeing doctors at all and just shrug off any health issues they may have. Thankfully, one doesn’t need to put themselves through something like that when it comes to every single issue.
Thanks to the Affordable Care Act, many health plans come with a variety of free preventive-care benefits. If you want to get a vaccine for your children, a high blood pressure screening or a mammogram, this can all be done without you having to fork over even a dime. If there is one thing that you need to keep in check, it’s your health.
5. Wellness Classes
No need to spend hundreds a year on gym membership. Most of those fitness classes you long for can be found for free. Many Lululemon Athletic stores offer free yoga classes on a weekly basis. You can also hit up sites like MeetUp and join fitness groups. They should have a fine variety ranging from yoga to weight lifting.
Most communities also offer such practices. Whether it be your local temple, church or community center. The internet is also an amazing place for free workouts. There are plenty of qualified workout instructors on YouTube just waiting to change your life.
6. Museum Visits
If you’re feeling bored, broke, and aimless on a Sunday, you don’t have to look for inspiration in the white walls of your apartment. Many museums, zoos, and galleries offer free entry. Washington D.C.’s Smithsonian museums, Los Angeles’ Getty Center, New York’s Museum of Modern Art, and the Lincoln Park Zoo in Chicago are just a few examples.
A student ID, being a senior citizen and having a Bank of America card in your possession will all play to your benefit. Little do most know, but if they are a Bank of America card holder, they’ll get free entry to over 200 museums on the weekend of every month.
7. Free Concerts
If you live in almost any major city, you’re bound to run into some luck in terms of free concerts. Many cities have free concerts at their biggest parks or at their local performing arts centers. Many times you can see some retro music acts from the ‘60s, ‘70s, ‘80s or ‘90s perform.
If you’d like to see more modern day performers or something in terms of classical music and opera, you can always volunteer at local concert halls or art centers. While you’ll be technically working, you’ll never miss a beat of the performance going on upon the stage.
8. Free Hobbies
Spending most of our days hard at work in the office, it’s easy for some of us to forget about the life outside and the importance behind hobbies. Instead of spending weekends inside watching YouTube videos, why not join a free workshop and boost your culinary or knitting skills.
While some might charge a very small fee, many are completely free. Stores like Home Depot, Apple, Michaels and A.C. Moore offers classes to adults and kids completely free of charge. Another good place to go is your local library. If any institution is giving away anything free, it’s likely the local library.
9. Free E-Books
Everybody wants to read, but books that are on paper and on the Kindle, they are just so darn expensive. Sure, libraries exist but the books have been touched by hundreds of strangers and who really wants to read something made out of a chopped up chunk of the rainforest?
Weary readers no longer have any excuses. Gutenberg.org and the University of Pennsylvania’s online book page has a tone of classics with expired copyrights for free. Finally you can read books like Little Women, War and Peace and Moby Dick for free in E-book form on your favorite handheld device.
10. Free Music
If you’re taking weekly trips to your local boutique music shop and slamming down big bucks for records, cassettes, Cds, you are definitely living in the past. These musical relics went out with big name music shops like Tower Records and Music Plus.
No need for the clutter that comes with a giant music collection. Music completely free with apps and websites like Spotify, Pandora, and iHeartRadio. You can install them on your mobile and laptop. With that, the biggest music collection in the world is right a click away. Time to take those records to the city dump where they belong.
11. Free College
Most would hurriedly assume that there is no college in the United States that is completely free. They’d definitely be assuming wrong. Head over to Kentucky and go to Berea College. Every student gets a four year tuition scholarship that would amount to $100,000.
Kentucky’s Alice Lloyd College is another school that doesn’t require students to pay tuition. However, they’ll need to work for their education. Every student is required to work at the college for 10 hours a week. Going over to Missouri, their College of the Ozarks requires each student to participate in a work program for their education.
12. Baby Products
If you thought owning a dog was expensive, just wait till you get your hands on a baby. Diapers, food, clothes and other baby products can have you spending hundreds of dollars a week. No one ever said babies were cheap.
The average family spends up to $12,000 a year on their newly born baby. That said, you can actually save a lot of money if you’re living in 10 specific states. Alabama, California and Virginia amongst others have introduced the baby-box program. The program helps new parents out by providing them with boxes with educational pamphlets and tons of baby products like diapers, wipes, formulas, creams and other things.
13. Free Food at Restaurants
There a ton of special days that can land you with a free meal. If you want some free food, head over to almost any restaurant on Mother’s Day or Veterans Day. If you got a mom or a veteran at the table, you’re bound to get some free food.
Dunkin Donuts, Krispy Kreme and other donut joints give out free donuts on National Donut Day, 7-Eleven give out free slurpees on 7/11, and IHOP will smack down some free pancakes on your plate on National Pancake Day. A number of restaurants will give out free food to people on tax day in April.
14. Fruits and Veggies
If one is actually going to the marker and buying fruits and veggies, they can already consider themselves on the right path. That said, they don’t have to go to their local Albertsons to buy fruits and veggies that are full of harmful chemicals. They can go organic for free.
Depending where you live, you can always forage for food. FallingFruit.org has an interactive map that will show you locations where you can harvest your own fruit, veggies and nuts.. You can even find out where specific fruits and veggies are. This is definitely a way to save some money and get some exercise at the same time.
15. Free Meals For Kids
Kids are such a hassle to take out to restaurants. They’re usually fairly picky and will only eat about half of what’s on their plate. No longer will someone need to spend $12 on a meal that will hardly be touched. There are a number of restaurants that will serve your child completely free of charge.
Many big chain restaurants like Denny’s IHOP, Applebee’s, and TGIFriday’s will serve your kids for free on select days of the week. You can also follow other restaurants on Facebook and Instagram and find out about any deals and steals they might have concerning children.
16. Birthday Deals
While not everything is going to be completely free on your birthday, you can get something for free at a restaurant. However, you might have to subject yourself to a very embarrassing birthday song. You can literally drive around town and collect little desserts from different places.
Baskin Robbins will give out a free scoop of ice cream, Dunkin’ Donuts will give out a free beverage and Waffle House will give you a free waffle. Ruby Tuesday puts up a little more of an effort and gives you a free burger or your pick of any garden bar entree. However, you must join their membership clubs before reaping these benefits.
17. Free Hotel Stays
If you find yourself loving one particular hotel, do yourself a favor and join their loyalty program. You can begin reaping a ton of benefits completely free of charge and even get some free stays in amazing hotel rooms. There is nothing like staying in the lap of luxury for free.
One example of how this works comes from the Hilton hotel chain. Hilton Honors members get 10 points for every dollar spent. Once you get 5,000 of these points, you can have a free night’s stay. Most hotels have similar programs. However, don’t expect the same deal to come out of your local Motel 6.
18. Free Flight Perks
When it comes to getting a lot of treats completely free of cost, you better stick to international flights, as domestic airlines have a reputation for being stingy with free things. That said, domestic fliers with Southwest does give out some nice deals from time to time.
Southwest airlines won’t hesitate to let someone check in two bags for free. That’s definitely rare for many airlines. JetBlue airlines features free television, satellite radio, and they distribute as many snacks as a passenger wants. If you want a refill on your cola, you can bet they’ll come and bring it to you.
19. Free Places To Sleep
Many people are itching to leave their comfort zones and travel to a different state or even country. However, holidays aren’t cheap and many just can’t afford shacking up in the Hilton for a week. Well, thanks to amazing programs like Couchsurfing and Wolfing one can sleep for free.
Join couchsurfing and message someone who doesn’t look like a complete psycho and you can have a couch to crash on completely free of any pay for an entire vacation. You can also wolf which will require you to put in some work in a hostel or farm. However, after a couple hours of work a day, you can go off and do all the sightseeing you want.
20. Tour Guides
Sometimes you just want to hop onto a plane and head out without doing any planning or research about the destination you’re going to. Tour guides can be so expensive and sometimes you rather just wing a trip and try to discover all the grand sites for yourself.
The only bad thing about that is that you may miss out on some really cool things. No worries, there are a ton of locals who are willing to give tours of their home completely free. You can find one of these tour guides by joining up with The Global Greeter Network.
21. Free Passport Photos
For people first getting their passports, it’s easy to get sucked into paying a huge amount of money for a couple small snapshots. At the post office, they’ll smile and greet you, all while slyly robbing you of $15. You could go to Costco and they’ll only charge you five bucks for the trouble.
What you can do is take a photo with your very own digital camera and upload for free onto the site ePassportPhoto.com. It will size the picture correctly for you, and then all you need to do is print it out on your printer. Another option is to download the Passport Booth app.
22. Free Auto Services
Once that car begins falling apart, one will dread taking it into the local auto dealership to make repairs. They’ll usually fix the problem, but take a hammer to the rest of the car while at it. Some folks might just let the problem lie unchecked, which will ultimately cause more harm to the car.
Instead of ignoring the issue, take it to your local Pep Boys; they offer five services for free. Their workers run battery tests, code retrieval, fix or replace your windshield wipers, inspect your brakes, and check the alignment. Other auto garages will likely charge you an arm and a leg for such services.
23. Free Tools
For the average person, tools can really seem like a bad investment. One is going to put out a bunch of money just to use a tool once and then it’s going to be stuffed into a drawer for who knows how long. Thankfully, there is a free solution to this dilemma.
Retailers are well aware of the woes felt by the masses. Big chain stores like Advanced Auto Parts, AutoZone and O’Reilly Auto Parts will let customers borrow the tools one needs to make repairs with a deposit payment. Once you bring everything back to them in stellar condition, they’ll give you the money back.
24. Free Shipping
Sometimes one can search the Internet for hours for a perfect price on an item, only to later find that the shipping price is insane. You can look to sites like eBay and Amazon as perfect examples of this. However, there is a solution to all of these high shipping prices.
Whenever looking to shop online, first take a look at the website FreeShipping.org. The website will direct you to retailers that offer free shipping on every order no matter what the size. The site will also give you coupons so you can get free shipping deals at other popular retailers.
25. Free Beauty Products
Unless you’re buying the “makeup” they sell at Walmart, you probably aren’t saving a whole lot of money on decent beauty products. If you sign yourself up for Sephora’s Beauty Insider rewards program, however, you can find yourself in a makeup goldmine.
Firstly, they really take customer care to the next level. If you sign up, you can expect to receive some free beauty products on your birthday. If that isn’t enough for you, you can subscribe to Allure magazine. They frequently send their subscribers free makeup samples in the mail. Also, keep in mind that many makeup companies send their Facebook followers free samples.