Are you a new or expecting parent looking for ways to save money? It can be hard to prepare for the arrival of a baby without breaking the bank.
But with some research and willingness to try out new ideas, there are many ways to get free baby stuff.
Don’t think you will end up with junk by going the free route. From clothing and toys to diapers and high chairs, you can end up with some otherwise pricey items without paying a dime.
In this article, I will show you how easy it is to get your hands on some free (and sometimes even brand-new!) baby gear by taking advantage of a handful of strategies.
12 Creative Ways To Get Free Baby Stuff
1. Look for Free Sample Boxes
Free baby samples may sound too good to be true, but many companies are eager for new parents to try their products and will offer you free samples to encourage you to buy. Try companies like Similac and Enfamil, which will send a box of infant formula samples to your mailbox and supply you with coupons for discounted or free formula.
Many other companies offer similar bonuses, including Your Baby Club, which will send you a free box and won’t even charge you for shipping. When you sign up for their newsletter, Dove also offers special baby product offers and freebies, including wipes.
Similarly, Huggies diapers will often give away sample boxes to new parents who sign up for their newsletter. There’s also the Hey, Milestone Pregnancy Sample Box and the Hey, Milestone Newborn Sample Box. Each baby welcome box can be yours just by covering the shipping costs.
Suppose you have favorite brands or companies whose products you would like to try. In that case, it’s always worth checking whether you can get a free sample by mail by signing up for a newsletter or following the company on social media.
Sometimes, paying shipping costs or something similar is all you need to do. It’s often surprising for moms to discover how many free product samples they can get simply by signing up!
2. Ask Friends and Family
This one is worth trying, even if you don’t think it will work, because it’s a great way to find free baby stuff.
If you have friends or family members who already have children who are likely to have grown out of their baby things, it makes sense to ask, as a lot of parents don’t know what to do with baby stuff, like strollers, a diaper bag, or even a nursing pillow. If you plan to use cloth diapers, you may also get these using this method.
One of the great things about baby clothes and toys is they often don’t get a lot of use before the child grows out of them. That means you can get nearly new in some cases, and often, parents will be glad to give them away because it frees up space in their home.
Many parents will gladly assemble a bag or box of things their child no longer wears or plays with and pass it on to you. Recycling items this way is also eco-friendly because companies produce less stuff, and materials are used more before being discarded. You can pass them on yourself when the time comes if they’re still in good condition!
You might think your friends and family aren’t likely to have baby things, but they may know somebody who does. It never hurts to ask around a little.
Many people put baby stuff away in the attic or crawl spaces, intending to deal with it “later,” and never get around to it. Asking can prompt great responses even in seemingly unlikely places!
You must ensure the items you receive are safe and meet today’s safety standards. Look out for loose buttons, broken toys, or outdated equipment. Pay special attention to a car seat with a short life expectancy. But with that said, consider taking it because Target will allow you to trade in a used car seat for a coupon to use in-store a few times a year.
3. Check Facebook Marketplace
Facebook marketplace is also a great option to check out for things for your new baby. As mentioned above, baby things are often only used lightly before the child grows out of them, so things can be second, third, or even fourth-hand before they look worn out.
Many parents are too busy to list and price items individually, so you can get things cheap or free on Facebook or baby groups. Join a few groups local to you and see if any parents nearby are offering bundles of clothes or will part with some toys.
You can also join sell, swap, and gift groups, but you should remember if they’re not baby-oriented, you’re less likely to get good items, and they’ll probably come up less frequently. Getting involved with baby-focused groups means you’ll join other parents who may have the things to help you.
4. Keep an Eye Out for Coupons
High-value coupons can get you free items, so it’s worth watching out for them. Some will only offer discounts or buy-one-get-one-free deals, but others may make you eligible for free items with other purchases.
Collecting coupons can be a great way to get free stuff for your baby. There are traditional print coupons, but nowadays, most people use apps, and there are some excellent options. Try things like Honey, BeFrugal, or Coupon Sherpa, which offers discounts and free stuff. In many cases, you can combine offers on these apps along with store sales.
The Pampers Club Rewards is free to sign up for and allows you to collect points you can redeem for free diapers, discounts on Shutterfly packages, and more.
Gerber Baby also offers money-saving coupons for baby food, so sign up for their rewards program. If you have a toddler and want another free food sample, like cereal or drinks from Honest Company, contact brands and ask. You may be surprised by what you get.
These can help you save money on some items and access free items sometimes. Apps have made using coupons a super simple process, so don’t underestimate the value of having a couple of great coupon apps on your phone!
Finally, spend some time at the magazine rack, too. If you flip through baby magazines, you may find free coupons. Aside from a baby magazine, you might also want to consider magazines aimed at moms, as these, too, could have deals. Many times, new companies will offer a free sample pack to help spread awareness of their brand.
5. Organize a Baby Shower
An excellent way to get free baby stuff is to organize a baby shower or have a friend or family member do this for you. Baby showers help expectant parents get what they need for their baby, and people usually bring lots of valuable gifts for the child or the parents.
Organizing a baby shower once you have the baby can be a lot, and you might feel awkward about doing so, but a friend or family member may be able to do this for you. Parents, siblings, friends, or even work colleagues may be happy to organize everything.
Many people choose to have their baby shower before the baby is born so they can have everything ready and buy anything they still need before the baby arrives. You can get a lot of free items from a baby shower. If you need money now, consider asking for cash. While some people think this is tacky, if it is what you need to ensure you can provide for your baby, then do it.
Another option is to ask for gift cards to the places you plan to shop. A handful of gift cards can be beneficial if you know you want a high-cost item, like a crib from someplace. Getting gift cards to that store can significantly cut costs.
6. Start a Baby Registry
If you start a baby registry at certain places, you’ll get a free starter kit. All expecting mothers have to do is open a registry and fill it with items they want, and these stores will offer freebies and rewards.
Target Baby Registry offers a deal like this, and many people who shop there benefit from it. It is full of samples and coupons for both the parents and the little one, making you eligible for certain deals in the store.
Walmart offers you a free baby box when you create a baby registry and request a box. It can take up to 6 weeks to arrive, but you can apply for both a welcome box and a postpartum care box – spoiling mom and the newly arrived little one.
If you’re already considering setting up a registry, this is a great way to ensure you get what you need and benefit from some great freebies. Because quite a few places offer this sort of deal, it’s a good idea to look around and compare your options before you decide where to create your registry.
You will also benefit from the gifts on the registry if your friends and family choose to buy them!
7. Host a Stuff Swap
Stuff swaps are an excellent option for people seeking free items, especially if you have things you’re willing to part with. You can get all kinds of baby things for free at this kind of swap and help other parents out simultaneously.
Stuff swaps are just casual, fun events where parents bring items they no longer want and trade them for things they do want. It’s easy to host one of these if you have a few local friends who are parents.
Swaps are also a great way to get to know people better and offer an opportunity to socialize a little. Remember to check the condition of items before you make swaps so you don’t end up disappointed, but this is a great way to get new things without spending a cent.
8. Check Your Health Insurance
Your health insurance might sound like a surprising suggestion, but health insurance companies will sometimes cover certain baby items for you, and this can be an effective way of getting free products. For example, the Affordable Care Act states most insurance companies must cover a breast pump for new moms.
Your insurance may also cover other items, so remember to check this out. For example, if you struggle with breastfeeding, your insurance might cover a few visits to see a lactation specialist. You can also ask your pediatrician if they have free samples.
9. Find Out About Local Charities
If you’re a low-income family, you may have additional options for getting free stuff. Things like free diapers or free food might be available through community assistance programs, so explore this option, too.
In some cases, churches, charities, and other groups may be able to provide free baby products. If you struggle to make ends meet, contact groups like this and see whether they can help you.
10. Pay Attention
One of the best ways to get your hands on free baby gear as a new mom is to pay attention as you drive around. Many people will put excellent toys and gear on the sidewalk with a free sign.
While you won’t get many items, it’s a great way to get a few things. We got a wagon and a kid’s picnic table this way.
Also, note local yard sales where they are selling baby stuff. On the afternoon of the last day of the sale, they might put a free sign on many things so they don’t have to pack it back up.
Finally, you might see commercials and other promos for baby deals and other baby coupons.
11. Mommy Markets
Have you heard of a mom’s market? There is a company that hosts sales at large convention centers for parents. They have a vast assortment of clothes, toys, baby gear, and other kid’s stuff, and while not free, the prices are reasonable.
On the last day, many items for sale are listed for 50% off. Even better, as your kids grow out of things, you can consign your stuff. You get 60% of the sale price plus early entrance to the event, allowing you to find all the best gear before everyone else. If you use the money you make to buy the equipment you need, it’s free!
12. Enter Sweepstakes
Plenty of sites online run sweepstakes where a new parent can win free stuff. Some of the prizes you could win include in a giveaway:
- Baby diapers
- Diaper cream
- Breast pads
- Nursing cover
- Other free gifts
All offer a free chance to win, and many allow you to enter multiple times to increase your odds of winning.
The only caution is ensuring the site is reputable and never pay or give away private personal data to get your prize.
Uncover The Best Freebies for Your Little One
When you think outside the box, there are many ways to get free baby stuff. The more creative you can be, the more free things you can get your hands on. But remember always to pay it forward when you finish the items.
Plenty of moms-to-be are struggling financially, and while you might not think a free wagon will have an impact, it will. So get as much stuff as you can for free, then return the favor to help others raise happy and healthy kids.
This article originally appeared on Wealth of Geeks.
Jon is the founder of MoneySmartGuides, which helps people dig out of debt and start building wealth to achieve their dreams. He has over 15 years of experience in the financial services industry and 20 years of investing in the stock market. He has both his undergraduate and graduate degrees in Finance, is FINRA Series 65 licensed, and has a Certificate in Financial Planning. He also is the founder of Unfinished Success, a personal development website whose goal is to help you be the best you.