Savings Expert Tells You How To Fill Your Summer With Free Activities
LOS ANGELES (CBSLA.com) — Finding fun things to do in the Southland this summer doesn't have to break the bank.
Consumer savings expert Andrea Woroch explains that there are plenty of freebies, and she showed CBS2 where to find them.
First, Woroch suggests searching websites such as MrFreeStuff.com, Freebies.org and Shopsmart.org. They're a one-stop shop for everything free.
"When you go to those freebie sites they do all of the work for you. They categorize those freebies and those deals based on different categories and services," she said.
Parents can keep kids busy this summer, and it won't cost a penny.
According to Woroch: "During the summer, there are a lot of freebies to be had. I have found popular attractions like local musuems, zoos and even water parks offer free admissions on certain days of the week or certain times of the day. Also, kids can bowl free through KidsBowlFree.com."
Kids Bowl Free offers two free games all summer long, which works out to as much as $500 in savings.
Lakeshore Learning stores have free crafts for kids classes on Saturdays.
"There are also lots of free movies at local parks. Sometimes, there are free camps that are offered by local parks," Woroch said.
Learning about the history of Los Angeles is a fun and, often, free activity. The Los Angeles Public Library in Downtown L.A. offers free one-hour walking tours every day of the week. Both the Hammer Museum in Westwood and the Getty Center in Brentwood offer entry free of charge, along with complimentary tours to attend their exhibitions, lectures and concerts.
LACMA is always free for children and offers free admission for L.A. County residents after 3 p.m. on weekdays. Make sure to check out their free summer concerts on Fridays, Saturdays and Sundays.
The Levitt Pavilion in Pasadena also has a free concert series, with 50 events scheduled, all summer long.
"From free movies in the park during the summer, to free bowling for the kids, and free travel perks, they really add up and you can save a lot of money," according to Woroch.
Amazon and iTunes offer free movies, music, and digital books.
But Woroch says the best website out there is Hoopla, which provides thousands of movies, books, and music for free. All you need is a valid library card to use it.
"You should get in the habit before you go to a store or a restaurant or make a purchase to look to see if there are any freebies or deals," Woroch advised.
Learning a new skill isn't going to set you back any mother either. Jo Ann Fabrics offers online tutorials. Williams-Sonoma has free technique classes, from making a perfect roast chicken to sauteing in a non-stick pan. And Apple hosts free daily workshops on topics ranging from how to use your computer to learning to edit video. Home Depot offers free home improvement workshops; learn how to install a kitchen faucet or properly paint a home.
Looking your best doesn't have to cost a dime. CVS offers free skin care and even throw in free samples. Sephora gives free makeovers and often will hold free tutorial events on the weekend.
"They do offer you free deluxe samples and sometimes it's enough product to last you a month," Woroch said.
Like to run around town? Nike organizes runs for the community with free coaching and guidance to put a bit of pep in your step. Lululemon hosts free yoga and running events. And Athleta offers free fitness classes.
Woroch said, "If you are new to fitness, or you are just trying to go on a free ride, you can get through several months by taking advantage of these free fitness classes."
Loyalty programs can also help customers score free meals. Simply sign up and and many eateries will give away a free appetizer or dessert just for joining. California Pizza Kitchen offers a free appetizer for those who subscribe to their loyalty program and gives a $5 voucher for every $100 spent there.
Woroch says scoring deals takes a bit of planning but urges people to not become overwhelmed. It's best to start looking for a freebie in just one category.
Here are some other sites/places that offer freebies:
CSUN Summer Movie Fest- Northridge
Moonlight Movies on the Beach- Long Beach
Friday Night Flicks - Pershing Square
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