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How to Get Free Stuff This Summer

Lisa Alcalay Klug



Of course, the best things in life are free… but so are a whole bunch of other things for no- or even low-cost. Wondering how to get free stuff this summer? Check out our list of things you only think you can’t get for free, or nearly free. But oh yes, you can!

Body Treats

Surprise! This list begins with beautiful bras and underwear. Unlocking the secret to savings at Victoria’s Secret is the Angel Card. Once you sign up for the credit card at this infamous retailer, you immediately receive a $15 gift credit. Add to that a $10 gift credit on your birthday and a cute little passport of savings with one-goodie-a-month discounts and coupons for free undies. Combine these deals with additional offers you receive by email. Yes, been there, done that… just ask the staff, who are more than happy to indulge your wish for a new demi-cup or a lacy little number and may surprise you with their willingness to make sure you snag low-cost purchases and free gifts to earn your loyalty. Soon, you’ll have yourself a growing collection of lovely sweet nothings, with additional offers popping into your in-box on a very regular basis.

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What goes better with lingerie than chocolate? At Lindt Chocolatier on New York City’s Fifth Avenue, you might be dreaming of a purchase. But before you buy, try. The minute you stroll into the store, you’re almost instantly greeted with a complimentary Lindor truffle. Follow that up at the register with a little impromptu chocolate tasting. The store welcomes customers to sample any of the bars on display. The breadth of new flavors is astounding: dark chocolate with wasabi, or passion fruit, or coconut, or… any and all of the above. There is no purchase required and seemingly no limit, so take your time to decide which flavor(s) best satisfies your cravings. Find Lindt chocolatier locations near you at LindtUSA.com.


Next? Add to your do-free list a heaping serving of entertainment, thanks to summer concert series in nearly every major metropolitan area.

In Manhattan, don’t miss the 5th Annual Hudson Square Music & Wine Festival. This fun, free “After-Work Backyard Party” is held every Tuesday from June through Aug. 27 at City Winery from 5 p.m. to 7:30 p.m.

In Central Park, line up daily at noon for tickets to Shakespeare in the Park, or sign up online at shakespeareinthepark.org.

In Myrtle Beach, S.C., hit the Sunday Funday no-cover, all-ages shows that present both national and regional acts. You can learn more at BoathouseMB.com.

The Twilight Concert Series at the Santa Monica Pier is now in its 29th year. Much more L.A. finds, from live music at Farmers Market to the Ford Amphitheatre Summer Season are displayed at DiscoverLosAngeles.com.

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In San Francisco, the 76th season of the Stern Grove Festival (stergrove.org) features more great talent.   

If your digs aren’t listed here or you’re on the road, simply search “free summer concert series” where ever you are for the local down-low.


If you’re open to a new credit card, many brands are currently offering specials that could yield you a free flight by summer’s end. Offers vary based on your recent credit history but you may find these and other similar deals:

Southwest Airlines Rapid Rewards — Score 25,000 points for a round-trip this summer after spending $1,000 within the first three months of opening your account. A credit upon signing up covers your $100 annual fee.

American Airlines – Purchases totaling $1,000 over the first three months of your new card score you 30,000 miles. Your annual fee is waived for the first year. You also receive one free checked piece of luggage with every flight and a 10% kickback on your mileage bookings.

Capital One Ventures Reward Credit Card — Earn 10,000 bonus miles when you spend $1,000 on purchases within 90 days. There is no annual fee for your first year, no limit on miles earned and no expiration dates. And every purchase yields double points to fly on any airline.

Note: This is not in any way an endorsement or affiliate program. Be sure to research your best options before signing up. But do rack up points by paying for everything this summer with your card to meet that spending quota to snag your points. Think of it as the same as your cash budget and be sure to pay off your total on time each month to avoid unnecessary service charges and interest fees.

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Fruit and Veggies

One bill you might be able to easily reduce is your produce costs. At NeighborhoodFruit.com, you can easily find and share fresh fruits and veggies within your community, via interactive maps of bounty in local backyards and public land. You can share the fruit from your own yard, post a tree on public land, search out abundant resources in your neighborhood, learn about unusual fruit and download the Find Fruit iPhone app! And it’s all free. (U.S. only.)


A host of sites allow you to trade books, including Paperback Swap and Bookmooch. You can also swap books, movies and music at TitleTrader.com. Or. with Bookcrossing.com, leave your books in a public place for someone to snag and track what someone thinks of them!

Alternative Health Care

If all this leaves you needing some a tune-up, you can experiment with community acupuncture in a group setting for as little as $10 for the unemployed in San Francisco this summer at CAworks.org. Or, search in your area at the People’s Organization for Community Acupuncture at POCAcoop.com. 

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