The whole world wants to celebrate the day you were born — or at least the retailers who think they can get you in their store. There are hundreds of free offers available for birthday boys and girls, most in the food and drink category. But don't wait until the big day. Sign up now, and you could stretch out your free treats for a week of cheap bliss.
If you can't ingest all of the free food you earn on your birthday, bring a friend or two along to help you ease the burden.
• Arby's. Sign up for Arby's Extra's email newsletter and receive a coupon for a free 12-ounce shake with a purchase on your birthday. Even better than that, the fast food chain will give you a coupon for a free roast beef sandwich when you sign up for the email.
• Burger King. Sign up your kids at clubbk.com to receive a free kid's meal on their birthday.
• California Pizza Kitchen. Your kids, ages 10 and under, can get a free meal during their birthday month, when you register at cpk.com/cpkids.
• Captain D's. Sign up for the email newsletter at captainds.com and receive a coupon good for a choice of one of three free dinners on your birthday.
• Coldstone Creamery. Sign up for the restaurant's email newsletter at coldstonecreamery.com to receive a coupon to buy one ice cream treat, get one free.
• Dairy Queen. Sign up for the email newsletter at dairyqueen.com to receive a coupon for a free blizzard on your birthday.
• Denny's. The breakfast-focused chain offers a coupon for a free Grand Slam breakfast when you sign up for its email newsletter at dennys.com.
• Firehouse Subs. This sub restaurant offers one of the more valuable birthday treats. Show your I.D. with your birth date on your birthday and receive a free medium sub sandwich.
• Hooters. As if their marketing scheme was to entice you with food, Hooters gives out 10 free wings on your birthday.
• IHOP offers a free meal on your birthday when you sign up for the breakfast restaurant's email newsletter at ihop.com.
• Ruby Tuesday. Like most other restaurants, Ruby Tuesday wants you to sign up for its email newsletter at rubytuesday.com in order to get a free burger on your birthday.
• Smokey Bones. Get a $5 off coupon on your birthday when you sign up for the restaurant's email newsletter at smokeybones.com.
• Sonic. Get a coupon for a free cream slush, free tator tots or a free drink when you sign up for the drive-in restaurant's email newsletter at sonicdrivein.com.
Other free stuff
If you can't stomach all of that free food, try out some of these free offers.
• American Eagle. Sign up for the clothing retailer's email newsletter at ae.com, and receive a coupon for 15 percent off during your birthday month.
• Aveda. Join the birthday program at avedabday.com and get a free gift valued up to $24.99 on your birthday. The retailer also has a worthwhile referral program that rewards you for sharing the savings opportunity with your friends.
• Kmart. Register your kids for the birthday club at kmart.com and receive $5 "Birthday Bucks," a birthday crown, a birthday certificate and a fun pack with surprise goodies.
• Olan Mills. Children ages 3 and under can be signed up for the Olan Mills birthday club at olanmills.com. Participants will receive a free pose package that includes one 8-by-10, one 5-by-7 and four wallet-sized photos.
• Sephora. Subscribe to Sephora's Beauty Insider email newsletter at sephora.com, and the makeup chain will send you free a free combination shampoo, body wash and bubble bath.
• Toys 'R Us. The toy retailer will send your child a personalized birthday card and a special gift when you register at birthdaysrus.com.
Freebie resources and tips
There are loads of freebies available every day of the year and many a-blogger willing to search them out and share them with you. The website heyitsfree.net and moneysavingmom.com are great resources for daily offers.
Before you start signing up for dozens of email newsletters, create a free junk email account at gmail.com or yahoo.com. This will protect your personal email identity and protect you in case you fall into a spammer's trap.
Paitsel can be reached at 247-4737 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
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