One of the best ways to make your retirement savings last longer is to save money on everyday expenses. But what if you could save even more money… by getting things for free? Whether you’re a hardcore coupon collector, a natural bargain hunter, or just looking to save some extra money, here are a few ideas for things you can get for free:
You don’t have to pay for audiobooks on Amazon. Find a book you like on LibriVox.org and download it for free. The books are all in the public domain, so there is no worry about piracy. Are there any classic works of literature that you would love to hear on audiobook? Check them out on LibriVox.
Spotify.com is a great online service that makes it easy to listen to music by your favorite bands and musicians, and all for free. You can also pay to upgrade to a premium membership that gives you some additional features and abilities to use the site, but for the most part the free version is wonderful enough without having to pay.
If you’re traveling with your grandchildren or taking them out for dinner, one of the best ways to save money is to find a restaurant where kids eat for free. The site, MyKidsEatFree.com offers a search tool where you can find nearby restaurants where kids eat for free.
You don’t have to pay big money to protect your home computer from viruses and malware. There are excellent free anti-virus programs online, such as Microsoft Security Essentials (for Windows PCs) will protect your computer from the most common threats at no cost.
More universities, including some of the most elite private universities in the world, are offering their courses online for free. Although you can’t get course credit, these are a great way to keep your brain sharp and learn some new things while hearing from some of the brightest minds in the world. You can get free courses from Harvard University’s Open Learning Initiative online.
Instead of spending big money on long-distance phone service, you can talk to your loved ones for free with Skype or Google Voice.
Are you looking for some new furniture, a new bicycle, or any other odds and ends for your home? Maybe you can get them for free with Freecycle.org, an online organization that helps people give and receive free stuff. Part of the mission of Freecycle is related to environmental sustainability – by recycling and reusing and giving away their old stuff, people can keep things from going to the landfill.
Next time you’re on vacation, or even while you’re in your own city, check to see if there are any free museums where you can enrich your cultural horizons without emptying your pocketbook. National Geographic has a list of 20 great free museums in the U.S.
What are some other fun “freebies” that you enjoy finding? Please join the conversation.
Watch this video for 10 more ways to save money in retirement.