Free Stuff, By Popular Demand

A few people recently asked me how I get all my free stuff. Here’s how. Enjoy.

First, enter every contest you see, no matter what it is. I once entered a contest I saw after a rerun of How I Met Your Mother for a vacation in a tropical place that I don’t remember. Clearly, I didn’t win the vacation. A few months later, I got a call from my mom saying, “Your bike is here.” And I answered, “I have no idea what you’re talking about.” So she repeated, “Your. Bike. Is. Here.” And I was like, “Yeah, Ma, I heard you, but I still don’t know what you’re talking about.” Sure enough, there was a Nerve bike in a box outside with my name on it. I fretted at first, thinking somehow someone had stolen my identity, but then realized if that were the case, that someone would have gotten the bike; they wouldn’t have sent it to me. Then I saw in itty-bitty font on the shipping label How I Met Your Mother. I looked up the contest online and saw that the runner up prize was a bike.


I entered a contest online for Hershey’s something or other. See? I don’t even know what it was for. I won a barbecue utensil set. I have no idea what that has to do with Hershey’s but it’s all mine.


I found a code for a sweepstakes for Capn Crunch cereal. I won a cornhole game. Okay, fun. A few weeks later, a 70 pound box arrives at my door. It’s a massive cornhole game.


Also, I won my backyard patio set through a random sweepstakes.


There used to be a thing called Viggle, and it used to listen to television and I’d get points and redeem them. That’s how I got albums for free by Ed Sheeran, Andy Grammer, and Hozier. I also got a free toaster and a free crockpot. Alas, Viggle is no longer a thing.


However, there are three sites I use constantly for free stuff–mostly gift cards for Amazon, Starbucks, AMC theatres, and Dunkin Donuts. Strong suggestion: create an email account separate from your main account and use it specifically for this stuff. That way you can avoid the inundation of emails from these sites in your normal account.

Swagbucks: Sign up using this link:

Buy stuff through SB. Just log on, find a store online (like Macys or Amazon or Harry & David or Sears or Staples or even Dominos–really lots of stores), and then shop. As long as you go to the website through SB, you’ll earn points on the amount you spend.

You can also earn points by watching videos, taking surveys, and answering a daily poll. Sometimes earning points is slow, but they add up eventually, and you can redeem points for gift cards. Thanks to S I found this.

MyPoints: Sign up using this link:

Same thing–buy stuff, watch videos, vote, and take surveys. You can also print coupons, or even just browse coupons, and earn points. Redeem points for stuff.

Bing: Sign up using this link:

The easiest thing you can do is search. You get 5 points a search for a max of 150 points a day. If you use MS Edge, you can get up to 170 points. You can also search on your phone daily for another 100 points.  There are also quick quizzes or searches of the day that you click on and get 5 to 50 points. If you buy stuff from the affiliate store, you can get points, but I don’t do that because I don’t buy video games or other tech-like things, but if you do, go for it.

Another website that does only surveys is E-Rewards. ( It takes a really, really long time to accrue points, at least it does for me. I guess if you want free magazines, then those are easier to attain. For the bigger stuff–iTunes and Starbucks and hotel points–it takes seemingly forever. I also sometimes have problems with different browsers. If you have some downtime, hop on and take a few surveys. Eventually, you might earn something.

Now for credit cards!

Chase Amazon earns you points for everyday shopping, more points for groceries and gas, and even more points for shopping on Amazon. If you use Amazon, it’s a good card to have.

Amex, and Bank of America both have points and cashback options, and usually their gift card options for points is pretty good– CVS, The Gap, AMC, and lots of other places. Discover has cash back. They used to have an amazing points system where you could buy actual stuff with points, which is how I am the proud owner of a paper shredder.

I also get points from Fios. I usually redeem them for Dunkin Donuts cards.

Since I have TMobile, I downloaded their TMobile Tuesdays app. Again, lots of Dunkin Donuts cards from them.

I have the Dunkin app and the Starbucks app, and every time I get a gift card, I add them to the apps. That way, I earn points for buying things. I can get free stuff every time I get to a certain number of points (or stars for Starbucks). I don’t remember ever really having to pay for anything at either of these places.

I also have loyalty membership thingies for basically anywhere I’ve ever shopped. Dicks Sporting Goods, 16 Handles, CVS (I know their markup is insane, but when you get a sale, points, and coupons, you can get away with paying up to 80% off, which I’ve done), any grocery store, AMC, Regal, a bunch of hotels, and a bunch of airlines. Points add up, especially if they don’t expire.

There is a whole lot of free stuff out there in the world waiting to be owned. Go get some for yourself.

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