1. Free childcare at Kroger chain stores
Most Kroger stores offer an hour of free childcare for kids ages 2 – 6 as you shop. How awesome is that?!
They don’t even need to be potty-trained — the daycare attendant will simply page you if your child needs to go to the restroom. Keep in mind that only 10 kids can be in daycare at a time, so avoid shopping during peak hours if you want to take advantage of this free service.
2. Free grocery pickup at Walmart
Say it’s pouring outside and the kiddos have their grumpy pants on. The last thing you want to do is drag them into a grocery store.
Instead, head to Walmart.com, order the groceries you need, and head to the store at the designated time of your choosing. A Walmart associate will do the shopping for you and will even load your car — all for free. You’ll get the same low prices when you order online as you would in-store.
Kroger and its affiliate stores have a similar service called ClickList, and right now the pickup service fee is waived for your first three orders. Normally pickup orders are $5.
3. Free smash cakes for one-year-olds at Harris Teeter, Albertsons, and Walmart
Albertsons and Harris Teeter will give your one-year-old a free smash cake to dig into on his or her birthday as long as you fill out an application ahead of time. Just call a few days before your child’s birthday to order it.
At Walmart, if you order a birthday cake or cupcakes worth over $15 for your little one, they’ll also give you a matching smash cake free of charge.
4. Free snacks for kids at Kroger, Publix, Harris Teeter, and Whole Foods
Ease their hunger pangs with a piece of fresh fruit found in a bin located in the produce section at stores like Whole Foods and Kroger.
Or, head to the bakery at WinCo, Publix, and Harris Teeter where kids (and yes, even adults) can get a free cookie.
5. Free baby stuff at Target
If you’re a new mom or are expecting a baby, create a baby registry at Target.com. Once you’re done, head to a Target store and pick up a bag full of baby freebies worth around $60. You’ll also get a 15% off completion discount on any remaining items left in your registry that baby shower guests didn’t buy.
6. Free wine chilling at Fred Meyer
Headed to a party and don’t want to bring a bottle of warm white wine? Problem solved when you shop at a Fred Meyer or other Kroger-affiliate stores.
In the wine section you’ll find icy water churning in a tub. Set your bottle of wine in there, finish the rest of your shopping, and pick it up before heading to checkout for chilled wine ready to serve.
7. Free products on Fridays at Kroger stores
On Fridays, Kroger stores offer a digital free-item coupon that can be added to your loyalty card and redeemed within two weeks. In the recent past, Free Friday Download coupons have been good for bread, yogurt, pet food, candy, and more.
8. Free knife sharpening at Schunucks, Raley’s, and Festival Foods
Ask your store’s butcher if you can get your knives sharpened for free. Most Schnucks, some Raley’s stores, and Wisconsin-based Festival Foods offer free knife sharpening for their customers and will even provide protection sleeves.
9. Free meat and seafood seasoning, marinating, and trimming at Whole Foods, Albertsons, Publix, and Harris Teeter
Many grocery-store meat counters (not just the ones listed above) will readily season, marinate, and trim your meat and seafood for you without charge as long as they aren’t busy. So if you need a special cut or want your meat marinating ASAP for tonight’s dinner, go ahead and ask!
10. Free Wi-Fi at Target, Harris Teeter, and Kroger
Free Wi-FI is especially useful at Target, where you’ll need it to access Cartwheel deals and coupons. You may have to agree to user terms in a Web browser before accessing any apps.
11. Free boxes at WinCo, Safeway, and Walmart
The key to getting the best free boxes (and those are apple boxes because they’re stronger and have handles) is to call the produce department ahead of time and ask to have them set aside the boxes for you. Choose a busy grocery store with a lot of inventory — like Walmart and WinCo — because they’ll have plenty to give away daily as they restock.
12. Special ordering at Walmart, Publix, and Kroger
Some stores, like Walmart, don’t have enough room on their shelves to carry specific items regularly. Or, sometimes stores won’t keep a stock of certain products like live crabs or Coke in glass bottles because there isn’t a high demand for them. However, plenty of stores will special order items for you if you ask.
13. Free cheese and fruit portioning at Kroger and Whole Foods
Only need half a melon? Whole Foods will portion out and reprice the exact amount you need. They’ll do the same for cheese and so will Kroger stores — especially since they now own NYC’s famous Murray’s Cheese Shop and have plans to open more artisan cheese kiosks in their stores.
14. Free samples of anything in the store at Trader Joe’s and Whole Foods
Before you go opening up sealed packages in-store, make sure to ask a store employee at Whole Foods or Trader Joe’s first. Both stores encourage shoppers to sample products they’re interested in buying, so don’t hesitate to ask!
15. Free battery installation at Walmart
As long as you buy your car battery at Walmart, you’ll also get free installation.