Is There a Catch to Getting Free Stuff From Websites?
By PF Wilson
It may sound obvious, but a great way to stretch your budget is to get stuff for free. Go online and you’ll find no shortage of websites that will connect you with free samples of everything from candy bars to tools. But is there a catch? We checked out some of the most popular sites for free stuff and tried, well, to get free stuff.
You may have seen this outfit in your Facebook news stream, either as “Women Get it Free,” or “Men Get it Free.” The former has 5.1 million likes on Facebook, while the latter has just 130,000. It seems women like free stuff a lot more. Both Facebook pages lead consumers to GetitFree.org. Be prepared to fill out a lot of online forms to receive anything.
This website is an aggregator. In other words, they find deals for free stuff across the web and post the links on their site. The offers are listed by day. Many of them are linked to Facebook pages, while others connect you to survey sites. Others, like the grocery chain Publix for example, send you to a company website where you create an account and subsequently collect the offer. It all looks legit, though you may be at the mercy of a third-party website when it comes to actually redeeming the offer.
FreeStuff.com also attempts to gather the best of the best and send you in the right direction. The number of hoops you have to jump through depends on the company making the offer. A free copy of Road & Track magazine, for example, merely requires name, physical address, and email address. Presumably you will be the recipient of a few follow-up emails. Not all of the offers work. One for Dannon yogurt sends you to a couponing site that then has you choose your local grocery store. Once logged into the super market website, no such coupon exists.
This can be confusing one. Interspersed in the list of free offers are ads for companies not giving out goodies. As with the other sites, SweetFreeStuff is merely a conduit through which the offers flow, mostly to company websites, social media pages, or survey platforms.
You won’t find giveaways here so much as you’ll find a list of contests and sweepstakes. A sidebar divides up offers by category. These range from books, clothes, and CDs to food, games, and magazines. A fun find here is a link to the website for the band Metallica, where you can download MP3 versions of the band’s old concerts. Fun if you’re the head banging sort.
This is a unique site in that many of the posts take you to other free sample aggregators. It also links to testing sites that offer free samples, as well as coupons.