How to get Freebies, but Avoid the Scams!

Everyone loves a freebie but often there can be hidden terms and conditions and all sorts of scams on the internet these days - so we always recommend that you are careful. We’ve brought you some tips to ensure your ‘freebie’ doesn’t end up costing you and how you can actually get your hands on some reliable free products!

Free Means Free!

If a website is asking for some form of payment towards the free item you are requesting then do not continue! Often companies will ask for a small processing fee or a postage cost and some scam companies will take your money and you will never receive your item. You will often see ‘free trial’ offers available where you pass over your bank details which should definitely be avoided. It could turn out that you are unable to cancel the trial and at worst they could steal all of your credit card information. Unless it is 100% free, it is best to be avoided. You may think you are getting a bargain only having to pay a few pounds but if your credit card is cloned you could end up paying a lot more.

Choose Reliable Companies

FreebiesBigger companies have more money and will often giveaway free samples hoping that you try the products and end up purchasing them in the long run. If a well known brand is offering freebies make sure you double check the freebie is coming directly from their store or website. Smaller companies also give out free items but they are likely to be little things such as pens, posters or key rings. If you do happen to see smaller companies or brands you have never heard of before offering freebies that cost over £5 then it could be a scam. Approach with caution and do not give away personal details.

 

Protect Your Personal Details

Following on from the previous point, do not give away any personal information that you are not comfortable sharing. Most freebies require the minimum details of your name, email address and home address. This is acceptable as they need this information to send the free item to you. There may also be a few other questions for market research but any non-required information that is asked for will generally just be used to send you spam and junk mail. Sometimes companies will request your telephone number and email address and this doesn’t mean it’s a scam but if you aren’t comfortable sharing those details then don’t do it. It’s not worth it for a small value item. You should never give your credit card information when requesting a freebie. If this information is required then it is likely a scam.

It Could be too Good to be True

SurveysMost freebies are worth less than a fiver and only occasionally a bit more so if you’re looking at getting a free car, house or high value gift card then steer clear as it is likely to be a scam. A popular freebie scam is to offer you gift cards to popular supermarkets or restaurants for £500 and over for completing a survey or similar. These are scams and will take all of your personal data and you will never receive your item. 

Keep it Impersonal

A good way to avoid the spam and separate your freebie hunting from your regular life is to set up an email address that is specifically for entering giveaways and other promotions. This is a good idea if you want to keep your private emails separate so they don’t get lost in a sea of coupons and you don’t have to worry about your personal email address being compromised.  

Top Tips to get Freebies

If you want to get freebies in a safe way there are a few ways of doing so. You need to make sure if you are requesting freebies online that you are using a trusted and reliable website. There are many websites dedicated to showing you the latest free items and often these will have a comments section so you can see if anyone else has applied or if something isn’t quite right with it. Freebie communities are great as people will openly discuss free items and help others to avoid freebie scams. You can find these communities on Facebook by searching or on forums such as Money Saving Expert. If it’s general free items you’re after then check out your local Freecycle and Freegle pages where everyday people list items that they want to get rid of to see if there’s anything that catches your eye.

SamplesAnother great way to get free samples is to pop into stores and directly ask if they have any freebies. Department stores with concession stands are great for this, you will often be able to pick up perfume samples, makeup or body lotions. These samples may only be small but a free item is still free after all.  Next time you visit the dentist, ask if they have any samples you could try. You could come away with a free toothpaste sample and toothbrush which are great for using when travelling. The Body Shop offer free skin consultations and will often send you away with a few pots of products to trial with no purchase necessary. You could also write or email companies saying you want to try a product before you buy it and see if they can send you a trial sized item. Become a blogger and get freebies sent to you in exchange for an honest review - this can take time but once you get started the free items will continue to come your way.

Use vouchers regularly and you will get freebies more often than you think. Couponing can take a lot of time and patience but is worth the effort.

Finally, how could we write about freebies and not mention our own Freebie section - we check out all of the offers before posting them, so you can have some confidence that they are not scams. 

What is the Verdict?

MoneySavingPigWhere do you get your freebies? We hope these tips will help you stay safe. We love feedback so please use the comment section below. 

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