FORT MYERS, Fla. - They say nothing comes for free anymore, but WINK News and Consumer Reports found that's not necessarily true. For the savvy shopper, there's a wealth of freebies available online. You only have to know where to look.
"Freebies are a great way to try new products," says Jody Rohlena of Consumer Reports. "Just be aware they're typically samples and many of them are travel-sized."
But some companies give you a lot more than others. While one company sent out a free four milliliter sample of lotion, another sent out a 50 milliliter bottle of face soap.
"That's a good-sized sample," Rohlena says. "It's enough to use the product a few times and decide if you like it."
To find your own freebies online, try aggregator websites like www.freeflys.com, www.hunt4freebies.com, and heyitsfree.com.
"Facebook is another good place to find freebies. If you 'like' a company or a brand, they may send you free samples," Rohlena says.
Twitter is also worth checking. We found an offer for a free nutrition bar if you follow the company.
Also check out businesses like Target and Proctor & Gamble. Sometimes they offer free samples through their websites. Just be aware you may have to enter some personal information. Never give out your birthdate, social security number, or other sensitive and private details.
For frequent movie goers, consider signing up for a rewards card at your favorite theater. Regal Cinemas and AMC both offer programs that allow you collect free concessions and tickets over time.
But be ready to be patient. If you're ordering a freebie online, chances are it will take awhile to get to you.
"We ordered 44 items," Rohlena says. "Just about half had arrived after almost three months."