Don’t we all just love a freebie. Especially when every other aspect in life seems to be getting more and more expensive.
When we found out we were having a baby one of the things that kept being said to us was make sure you save up. We knew certain aspects of having a child would require us to spend a bit more money than we usually spend out on. I was prepared for this. After all, you’re literally kitting out the life of a new gorgeous human, why would you not want to indulge on that.
But like I said, with the cost of everything rising we had to be sensible on when and what to buy. That’s when I became so surprised at the amount of things you can actually get for free. Not reduced, not with any catches, just FREE.
These are the best services we used during pregnancy & once baby had arrived that all provided us with excellent free items & experiences.
Facebook Market Place
Not only do babies grow out of things so quickly, you often find a lot of new parents buy items that they really don’t need. This can often be because you’re so overwhelmed with information that you buy above and beyond. We fell in this trap with certain items. But once we got the feel for parenthood & along the way realised what we needed, Marketplace became our favourite place. One of the Moses baskets we used for Beauden was free. So are many of his toys, and even his toy storage unit. If you take the time to search on there, you will find some real gems.
I am so so thankful to my friend for telling me about the Emma’s Diary app. The app is full of helpful articles for pregnant women and new parents. Plus loads of discount codes for top recommended products. But the best part is there are FREE packs you can collect from stores throughout your pregnancy. In total there are 3 packs to collect, Mum To Be, Bump To Baby & New Family.
These are packed with travel size, and sometimes full size products for you and baby. We stocked up on the likes of Bepanthen, Pampers nappies, Sudocrem, loads of sample sachets of Palmers Bump Lotion & Oil, plus loads of discount vouchers for other useful items. You simply show the app in any Boots store & claim your packs.
Children’s Centre (Sure Start)
My number one tip to anyone expecting or to a new parent is to register at your local children’s centre. These are usually council ran & offer a wide variety of classes for pre and post natal life that are completely free. Since Beauden was 3 months old we have been to our local Children’s Centre every single week. We are beyond fortunate with what has been on offer there.
Just a few of the classes we have managed to join are Baby Massage, Sing and Sign, Stay & Play, and Baby Sensory. Plus we have attended Health and Safety courses, a Weaning & Food Awareness course, and Breastfeeding Advice Groups. All for free. It actually amazes me how much has been on offer, and continues to be offered.
It is so important to visit your local Children’s Centre. The more interest they generate, the more support and funding they will get. Ask your Health Visitor or GP for details about your local one if you are unsure.
Friends and Family
So this one isn’t going to take much explaining. I don’t mean you’ll get things for free when your friends and family bring gifts to you. What I mean is don’t be shy on putting the feelers out there to friends and family for what you might need or have your eye on.
For example, we did this with a few toys we thought Beauden might like and knew our friends children would be growing out of interest with them soon. It’s also great if you have a friend or family member that has a baby a little older than yours. It means as they grow out of some of their clothes they can be passed on to you.
Me and my friends have swapped and passed on many baby clothes & items to one another, and it has saved us a fortune.
Instagram and Social Downloads
I am never usually one to fall for targeted ad’s on socials, but when I was pregnant I couldn’t help it. Usually the ad’s I see are not helpful, or are of shops I regularly buy from. But when I was pregnant I started to see things for courses & classes that where available to take.
I know a lot of people can be sceptical about signing up to a course that’s popped up on a targeted ad, but trust me when I say to go with your gut and give some of them a go. I am so glad I did.
Through Facebook and Instagram we did a number of free classes and courses. All it took was signing up with your email, and some required a short survey completing. Now all of these courses and classes did offer more information that came at a cost, but we didn’t sign up for further information and that was totally fine.
We took an online Zoom class in all things Newborn baby for a total of £0. It covered bath-time, nappy sizing and fitting, dressing your little one, feeding tips and techniques, and much more. We also did a short downloadable course on Safe Sleep for free. Then once Beauden was weaning I found a free Food Safety class online that came with a downloadable recipe book.
A lot of the time some of the information can seem basic, but I found that when doing these classes with Ste, it was eye opening to him and very insightful. So what might be basic for some, can be really important for others. They’re all worth a try for free I say.
Finally, we are at the end of this post and this little freebie is my favourite one to share. Many people don’t know that stores offer FREE sessions to come and explore all their products. You simply book your place (for free), turn up & be shown how things from prams, to car seats, to cots all work.
When I was pregnant we had no clue where to start when it came to all things travel system for a baby. Both me and Ste where clueless. Thankfully we found out that John Lewis offered an in store experience called All Things Baby.
You can book a slot with one of the partners on the Nursery Team to discuss whatever it is that you need. We initially booked to look at prams & car seats. Then we returned to look at nursery furniture, toddler sleep essentials and weaning essentials. Before these sessions I didn’t know where to start. You can read so much online & watch so many tutorials, but getting to touch, test and feel the products, as well as chat to a professional about them, is much more appropriate when making huge decisions.
John Lewis isn’t the only store to offer this free experience. You can also book at Mama’s and Papa’s, plus may other independent stores. If you’re based in the North West then check out Direct For Baby. All the sessions are free with no obligation to buy.
I hope you have found this post helpful. I love a bargain, and finding ways to save the pennies. Planning for a baby doesn’t have to break the bank. So, if you’re currently expecting and setting a budget, I hope these tips help you out. Let me know if any of these help you out.