A guide to birthday freebies

Mally Nichols, Reporter

It’s your birthday, obviously one of the most important holidays of the year. Could even be worthy of a national holiday, but who’s to say? Celebrating birthdays in college can be hard, especially when family and friends might be all the way across the country. 

It’s even worse to have to buy your own gifts when you’re broke because of college. Fortunately, as a pick-me-up, there are plenty of birthday freebies that students can take advantage of.

Many stores and restaurants will offer special discounts or gifts in accordance with a customer’s birthday, which means you can go almost anywhere and pick up something free to celebrate. Some of these examples require being part of a club or email subscriber list, but they’re typically free to join. Here are a couple places to grab yours:


Simply become a Sephora Beauty Insider and receive a free beauty bundle during your birthday month! The products are mini versions, but still a fun freebie.

AMC Theaters

Looking for movie perks? Join AMC Stubs for free as an Insider and you are immediately eligible for a free large popcorn during your birthday month!


Much like at Sephora, to receive this birthday freebie, you must join Ulta’s Ultamate Rewards to pick up the gift. It changes quarterly (so it’s always a surprise) and it can be redeemed any day throughout your birthday month. Members are also eligible to receive twice the amount of points earned on each purchase throughout the month.


Who doesn’t love pancakes? Well, at IHOP, you can get free pancakes on your birthday when you sign up for MyHop. Not only that, but members are also eligible to get free pancakes as an initial sign-up reward and can even get more free pancakes every year on the anniversary of their joining.


Coffee is the backbone of any college student’s diet, but did you know that by joining Starbucks Rewards, you’re eligible to redeem a free birthday drink or treat of choice? This comes with several other perks of membership, and joining is completely free.

Red Robin

Looking for a birthday lunch? Red Robin’s Royalty program is the place to start looking. Any time during the birthday month, members are able to receive a free fire-grilled burger.

BJ’s Brewhouse

Having a birthday at BJ’s? Join BJ’s Premier Rewards Plus for a variety of different perks including a free Pizookie for signing up and another on your birthday! (For those who didn’t know, that’s a free cookie pizza. And they’re delicious.)

Dave and Buster’s

For those planning to spend their birthday gaming their hearts out, Dave and Buster’s actually offers birthday rewards through Dave and Buster’s Rewards. Members can get coupons not only for birthdays, but also just for signing up.


Celebrating your dog’s birthday? No worries, there are birthday freebies for furry friends, too! At Petco, signing up for Petco Pals Rewards and placing your pet’s birthday in the account, you’re eligible to receive a free coupon for a whole pound of treats from the treat bar!

Auntie Anne’s

Get a free pretzel for your birthday when you register for Pretzel Perks at Auntie Anne’s. Membership comes with several other perks, but the free classic pretzel is definitely the icing on the cake. Keep in mind that this perk is accessible through the app, but only available for 14 days after it appears, so keep an eye out!

Moe’s Southwest Grill

Sign up for Moe’s Rewards and become eligible to receive a free burrito on your birthday every

year! You can also pick up points for more perks, and a free cup of queso when you register.

Whether you’re celebrating with products, dinner, or dessert, there are plenty of companies that offer birthday perks. There are far more than were covered in this list, so feel free to go forth and explore more options! 


For more information or news tips, or if you see an error in this story or have any compliments or concerns, contact [email protected].