7 Ways to Get Free Shipping for the Holidays
I love shopping online. I think it has to do with the fact that I live in Minnesota where winters are cold. Frankly, summers are cold too; I turned on my furnace twice in August this year. If I can get the same price I’d pay in-store and have something delivered to my door, sign me up. Over the years of buying everything from shoes to mattresses, a garbage disposal, shampoo, organic honey and prescription eyeglasses on the internet, I’ve gotten pretty good at avoiding shipping costs.
Here are my seven best tips for getting free shipping this holiday season:
- Use a coupon code. You’re probably already in this habit of searching for coupon codes whenever you buy something online. This is an obvious first step.
- Shop on Free Shipping Day. December 17, 2012 is Free Shipping Day. FreeShippingDay.com has a list of 1,000+ online retailers that will offer some type of free shipping promotion that day with a guarantee that your products will arrive by Christmas.
- Get a free Amazon Prime account. Students with an .edu email address can get free 2-day shipping on anything Amazon sells via a free Amazon Student account. Non-students can get a free 1-month trial of Amazon Prime if they haven’t had a Prime account in the last 13 months; Amazon Prime typically costs $79/year and offers free 2-day shipping and other benefits.
- Use your Target Red Card. Shoppers at Target.com who pay for their purchase via a Target REDCard get free shipping with no minimum purchase. This is noteworthy because Target offers a debit card version of the REDCard for those who don’t want a store-issued credit card.
- Shop at sites that offer free shipping. Hands down, the easiest way to get free shipping is to shop on websites that offer it all the time. A couple of my favorites include 6pm.com (the outlet site for Zappos.com), LLBean.com, Piperlime.com (and they will let you ship it back free too, if it doesn’t work out!) and Nordstrom.com.
- Use site-to-store. This won’t get it to your doorstep, but it won’t cost you anything either. Many retailers that operate bricks & mortar stores allow you to order on their website, then opt for free in-store pickup. Best Buy, Office Depot, OfficeMax, JC Penney, Lane Bryant and Payless all offer this service.
- Make a minimum purchase. If all else fails, most sites let you ship items free if you spend enough on their site. This is a last resort because if you have to spend $75 to get free shipping, then it isn’t exactly free, is it?
Even with those seven tricks up my sleeve, I can’t always avoid shipping charges. When I do have to pay them, however, I factor that into the product’s price and confirm that it is still a deal worth getting in on.
Are there online retailers where you’d love to shop if you could get free shipping?