NEW YORK (
) -- The only thing we like more than getting a deal is getting a freebie. And we're not talking about those buy-one, get-one-free deals, either - we mean a true, no-purchase-necessary freebie.
So where should you go to find all this
? There are Web sites such as
that aggregate free sample offers, and we also try to bring freebie offers to your attention on our
Free Stuff page
. But if you'd rather go right to the source, there are several retailers and companies that regularly give stuff away. Here are a few.
Some businesses just love giving you free stuff, Wal-Mart among them with its free sample tables.
No, Ikea doesn't give its furniture away, but the Swedish furniture store is almost as famous for its food as for its hard-to-assemble bookcases, and it's often willing to give away food for free if it gets people in the door. Usually that takes the form of a free breakfast - this past weekend, for instance, shoppers could come in Saturday through Monday before 11 a.m. and get a platter of eggs, bacon and hash browns, plus a cup of coffee, on the house.
The usual price of that breakfast is only $1.78 (99 cents for the breakfast and 75 cents for the coffee), so it's not as if you're making out like a bandit here. To keep up on all the free food offers from Ikea in the future, bookmark the retailer's
special offers page
We know, Panda Express has its share of detractors, but if there's one thing to be said of the Chinese fast-food chain, it's that it tends to be fast and loose with the freebies. It seems every time Panda Express launches a product it offers up a coupon to get a free serving of the item. And while it has received complaints for the
it serves for these promotions, you can't really complain about something you got for free. To keep up with all these offers, follow
Kmart's Web site has what may be a freebie fiend's dream come true:
. Every week the retailer links to a number of manufacturers offering samples of their products, and this week there are links to samples of
, among several other things. Put the site in your bookmarks and check back weekly to see what you can get for free.
Amazon's Kindle Store
You won't get best-sellers for free from the
Kindle store, but there are still thousands of e-books you can have for free and watch on your Kindle, computer or other device with a Kindle reading app. There are a few ways to navigate the loads of free books there, but the best way might be to visit the best-sellers list, which includes the
. You can also sort by genre so you can see, for instance, the
and get loads of free recipes.
While you're there, make sure you check out the
. Every day, users of Android devices are presented with a different paid app for free.
Bath & Body Works
We asked Erin Huffstetler, a veteran deal hunter and editor of the
, where she tends to find a lot of freebies. She pointed to Bath & Body Works, noting that the fragrance and soap shop tends to give away a free sample on its Facebook page whenever it launches a product.
Earlier this month, for instance, the retailer had a coupon for a free travel-sized item up to $5 in value. For more of the same, follow
Huffstetler also reminded us of a
recurring freebie we found last month
: Every Tuesday,
Outlets give a coupon for one free item of clothing. To get the deal you'll need to be a Shop Your Way Rewards member, and since it's good in stores only you'll probably need to live near a Sears Outlet to take advantage on a regular basis. Also note that while the original program was something of a free-for-all (no pun intended), there are now extensive terms: The coupon is good only for clearance items (denoted as such by a green or yellow tag), and you can't get outerwear, leather coats, dresses or Levi's merchandise for free.
Still, that's a free article of clothing for free every week. To get the coupons, follow
Sears Outlet Stores on Facebook
Giveaway of the Day
If a weekly freebie isn't good enough for you, how about a daily freebie? That's what you'll get at
, a daily deal site that presents you with a free software download every day.
You won't be getting Adobe Photoshop on here, or the latest PC games - what you'll find, rather, are simple software tools such as PDF converters or a program that can easily turn a video file into a DVD. Many of them might be of no interest to you, perhaps because you already have a similar program. But it's worth putting in your bookmarks to see what they have to offer.
You can always count on free sample tables at
. And if you're a serious freebie hunter, you can coordinate your Wal-Mart run to fall on a day when your favorite food maker or other company has set up shop there. The retail giant has a
on its Web site that lists which events are taking place in Wal-Mart stores in the foreseeable future. This week, for instance, expect to see Kraft set up at the Bright Ideas station, where it will be sampling
. There's no cheese like free cheese.
Wal-Mart isn't the only big retail chain that regularly has samples for its customers --
regularly lists free samples on its Web site, and unlike Wal-Mart, you don't actually need to set foot in the store. Just visit the
click on any samples you'd like to get, then answer the applicable survey questions and punch in your address for home delivery. Just make sure you check the page on a regular basis - the samples sell out fast.
Want to know which retailers have the best samples in stores? Check out our roundup of the
best retailers for free samples
Finally, here's one for the ladies: Huffstetler tells us that subscribers to the Victoria's Secret catalog get coupons for free panties throughout the year. Play your cards right, and you'll never pay for underwear again!
While we're on the topic, it's worth noting that Victoria's Secret frequently throws in a freebie with select purchases. Earlier this month, for instance, it offered
with all purchases of more than $75, and right now when you buy Victoria's Secret Pink merchandise and use the coupon code LIVEPINK, you can get a
. That's not a freebie in the strictest sense of the word, because a purchase is necessary, but if you're shopping there anyway you should take full advantage of whatever they choose to throw in.
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