There’s only one thing better than getting a good price on something, and that’s getting it for free.
Our annual list of freebies is packed with more something-for-nothing deals than ever. We don’t allow any useless junk on our list, only quality goods and services that you would happily pay good money for (or perhaps you already are). From free financial services to free technology and entertainment, there’s something here for everyone.
Go ahead. Put away your wallet. We insist!
You can actually get a free college education at a handful of schools.
For example, Berea College in Berea, Ky., covers the full $20,900 tuition for all students, out of a combination of grants, scholarships and work-study.
Cooper Union in New York City grants a full-tuition scholarship -- valued at $150,000 over the course of four years -- to all students.
And College of the Ozarks in Missouri requires students to participate in a work program rather than pay tuition.
(See more: What you should NEVER pay full price for)
Free Food at Restaurants
Your favorite snack shop or fast-food restaurant may have an annual freebie day.-- A free Rita’s Italian Ice in March
-- A free Ben & Jerry’s ice cream, Pretzelmaker pretzel, Cinnabon treat and Starbucks coffee in April
-- A free Haagen-Dazs ice cream in May
-- A free Krispy Kreme doughnut and TCBY frozen yogurt in June
-- A free 7-Eleven slurpee on 7/11 and a Chick Fil-A meal in July
Check with your favorite establishment to see if it offers any freebies throughout the year.
Free Computer Security
You don’t have to pay $70 a year for security software.
Avast Antivirus and Microsoft Security Essentials for Windows get good reviews from tech experts and offer basic defenses, including malware protection.
Free Digital Storage Space
With free online backup storage, you can share files and protect them from computer crashes, theft and natural disaster. Windows Live SkyDrive gives you 7 gigabytes of free, secure digital storage space.
You can also use Amazon Cloud Drive (5 GB free) or Dropbox (2 GB free).
Save money on your cell phone plan by using a free texting service such as textPlus. It assigns you a free phone number through which you can send and receive texts as much as you want on your Android devices, iPhone, iPad and iPod Touch.
Free Tech Support
If you have a problem with your computer, head to TechGuy.org or 5starsupport.com for free help. You can search the forums for your machine’s particular ailment or post a question to receive a timely response from the sites’ squad of geek volunteers.
And if these sites can’t help you, visit your device’s manufacturer’s own site for more free resources. Many post user manuals and FAQs to help you solve your dilemma.
Free Flight Perks
Domestic airlines are stingy with giveaways. But some airlines still offer a few freebies for fliers. One of our favorites: Southwest lets you check two bags for free -- which can save you up to $120 on a round-trip flight. JetBlue lets you check one bag free, plus gives you access to free TV, satellite radio and all-you-can-eat snacks.
Free Passport Photos
You’ll pay about $15 at the post office to get your picture taken for your passport. Instead, take your photo with your own digital camera, then upload it to ePassportPhoto.com, which will help you size it properly before printing on your home printer. The best part: You can redo your picture as many times as you like. After all, who wants to get stuck with a bad photo for the next ten years?
Free Language Lessons
Prepare for your international getaway with the free foreign language lessons online at FSI-language-courses.org. Or go to Openculture.com for a list of lessons around the Web that you can download to your MP3 player. Your public library may also offer courses or software to help you prepare for your travels.