“I need free money!” Everyone wants to know how to get money for free. Naturally, people love getting things for free. Consider National Doughnut Day, for example — people wait obscene amounts of time in line at doughnut shops just to get one for free, despite the fact that the average doughnut costs less than $1 on a normal day.

Free samples and other sorts of freebies are fun, but imagine ways of getting fresh cash now. Wait, you don’t have to imagine. For those who need free money (or just want it) there are options. Even a few extra dollars in your pocket can help once in a while, though many of our methods for getting money for free will give you hundreds of dollars. With minimal effort, you can get free money doing things you already do on a regular basis…

Included in This Article:

  • Get Free Money Today for Opening a New Bank Account, Looking into Credit Cards, Free Government Money to Pay Bills and More

  • Get Paid to Give Your Opinion, Share Photos, and Surf the Web

  • Get Free Money by Sharing Your Experiences, Installing an App, and Getting Paid for Your Workout

  • And More…

Getting Free Money to Help Pay for Bills

1. Get a Cash Bonus for Opening a New Bank Account

  • How Much You Can Make: Typically $100-$300
  • How You Can Make It: Signing up for a new checking account with a bank that’s offering a special promotion.

Banks are always looking for ways to compete with each other, and one common way to get new customers in the door is to offer upfront cash payments, simply for opening an account. There are some catches, though, for how to get money for free via this method:

  • Customers are usually required to sign up for services that save the bank money, such as direct deposit, online bill pay, or e-statements in order to qualify for the cash. Since direct deposit and online services reduce the amount of employees they need to hire, the bank saves money, and can afford to pay upfront customer bonuses.
  • There is usually a time limit that the account needs to be opened for, and a minimum balance. For example, you may have to maintain a balance of $1,000 for one year before receiving all of the bonus.
  • You may get the bonus in the form of a prepaid card instead of cash, but it is still money.

To find banks near you that are offering cash bonuses, pay attention to commercials and online advertisements, or do a simple internet search. Offers are typically temporary, so don’t panic if you missed one — there’s a good chance that it will roll back around within a year. Some companies run these types of promotions quite often, including the following:

  • Chase sometimes offers bonuses of up to $300 for opening a Premier Plus or Total Checking account
  • TD Bank has run promotions for $150 or $300 signup bonuses for new checking customers
  • BMO Harris has been known to offer up to $200 cash bonuses for customers who open a checking account
  • Santander Bank sometimes offers up to $150 signup bonuses for several of its checking account options

2. Do Simple Credit Card Balance Transfers

  • How Much You Can Make: Depends on how much debt you have already.
  • How You Can Make It: Move your balance on a high-interest credit card to a low- or no-interest card. You’ll still owe money, but you’ll owe less in interest payments over time.

Credit card companies are in the same boat as banks when it comes to competition for customers. Many offer balance transfer promotions, cash rewards, and even signup bonuses. While a high amount of debt isn’t ideal, it’s a good idea to get the best interest rate if you do have outstanding balances. With an introductory interest-free offer for balance transfers, you could save a lot of money by transferring your balance from a high-interest card to a new interest-free card. Here’s how to get free money today:

  • Check out CompareCards.com — it’s a site that allows you to compare current credit card offers, and find one that’s right for you.
  • Be selective, and read the fine print. Always know what you’re getting into before you make a major financial decision.
  • There may be fees associated with the balance transfer, but those fees can be minimal compared to the amount you can save on interest.
  • Once you apply for the new card and transfer the balance to the new card, that attractive $0 balance on the old card may look tempting. Don’t go racking up extra debt, or it will completely defeat the purpose.

3. Consider Credit Card Arbitrage

  • How Much You Can Make: Varies widely depending on how much debt you’re willing to incur.
  • How You Can Make It: Get a cash advance from a credit card. Invest the cash into a high-yield account. Pay the outstanding balance back to the credit card company before the no-interest grace period ends. Pocket the interest from your investment.

This is a clever way to get free money today. Did you know that you could take a cash advance from a credit card company and put it into an account where it will earn interest? It’s called credit card arbitrage. You just have to make sure you repay the money to the credit card company before it starts to accrue interest (during the grace period).

To do this, you’ll need two things: a credit card that allows cash advances and has a 0% interest offer, and a place to put that cash where it can earn money. For the second part, go to your bank and ask about the rates for high-yield savings accounts. You can also ask if the bank has any CDs with the same maturity as the grace period of the credit card where you got the cash advance.

Once you’ve decided where your money is best invested and made the deposit, you just let it sit and accrue interest until the grace period on the cash advance ends and it’s time to pay back the credit card company. Don’t get us wrong: although simple in theory, this method is risky, and we do not recommend it for casual investors. But it is perfectly legal (if not generally advisable), so we’ve included it here so that you know your options.

4. Choose a Credit Card that Offers a Sign-up Bonus

  • How Much You Can Make: Typically $100-$200
  • How You Can Make It: Sign up for a new credit card with a bank that’s offering a special promotion.

Here’s a simple way to get free cash now. Some cards offer sign-up bonuses for making purchases during the first few months of opening the account. You don’t necessarily need to purchase anything new though, since you can usually use your card to pay cell phone, cable or utility bills. Offers are constantly changing, but the following credit cards are offering sign-up bonuses (we’ll do our best to keep this list up to date):

5. Get Free Government Money to Pay Bills

  • How Much You Can Make: Grants range from hundreds to thousands of dollars.
  • How You Can Make It: Fit the criteria of a government grant for individuals or organizations. Fill out a lengthy application and wait to see if you were approved.

Sometimes you can get free government money to pay bills if you meet particular criteria. Grants are offered by both the state and federal governments, as well as nonprofit organizations, and they can greatly help your business if you’re self-employed or looking to start a business. Government grants are also available to individuals who want to go college. If you qualify, you’ll be able to get the money without any strings attached. This is the most viable way to get free government money to pay bills Take a look at Grants.gov to see if you qualify for a government grant.

Getting Free Money Online

6. Instead of Posting Free Rants on Facebook, Post Them to This Website and Get Paid

  • How Much You Can Make: Varies widely based on how much time you have. Each survey can pay anywhere from just a few cents up to $5 or so. (Note that many sites have minimum payouts.)
  • How You Can Make It: Sign up with any of our recommended sites and settle in for a lot of question-answering.

Get free money today with this method. There are several sites pay you in some form or another to take surveys. For example, the Mills Advisory Panel will give you points to trade for products that you may need, but they don’t pay you cash. However, there are a few sites that will pay you cash for taking their surveys.

At most sites, the process will be roughly the same. You sign up with one or more of the survey sites. Those sites will then refer you to other sites through companies or research firms. You’ll fill out some initial information to see if you qualify for a particular survey, and if you do, you can take the survey. A typical survey can last anywhere from 5-40 minutes to complete and pay varies wildly depending on the company.

  • PineCone Research pays $3 per survey. However, you’ll need to first qualify for the program by meeting certain demographic eligibility requirements.
  • Mintvine.com pays which either cash or gift cards. You also get 200 points upon registering, which are eligible for a $2 cash out in the United States and Canada.
  • Toluna.com allows you to earn rewards points that can be traded for cash or gift cards.

There are a large number of survey sites available, so if you don’t find one here you like, try a Google search for “earn money with surveys” and you’ll turn up plenty of results. Another great resource is a website called SurveyPolice.com, which will help you figure out which of these myriad survey sites are legit, and which may not be worth your time. If you have a teenager who wants to make money this way, check out our article on websites that offer paid survey opportunities for teenagers.

7. Get Paid for Photos You’ve Already Taken

  • How Much You Can Make: Varies widely on your photography skills, portfolio content, and tagging prowess. At $5 per sale, you’d need to make 20 sales to pocket $100.
  • How You Can Make It: Install the Foap app and upload your pictures right from your phone.

How can i get free money today? Give this a shot. Are you a connoisseur of smartphone photography? Foap.com will pay you for the photos on your phone. To become a “Foaper,” all you need to do is download the free Foap app, upload your photos and make them available for purchase on the Foap Market. Use the tags to make your photos easy to find, and then let your artistic skills do the selling. The photos that do the best tend to be authentic, un-staged, and free of logos or trademarks.

Keep in mind that you’ll need a model release for photos with a person in it (even selfies). Companies that use Foap include Purina, Hyatt, Volvo, and many more. For each photo you sell, you’ll earn $5, and you can sell the same photo an unlimited number of times. Not a bad deal for photos that would otherwise just be earning Likes on Facebook. There’s definitely free money online now for those who are savvy.

8. Make Money Doing Online Searches You’d Be Doing Anyway

  • How Much You Can Make: Casual users can expect to make $5-$10 per month; dedicated users (with a lot of time on their hands) can make more.
  • How You Can Make It: Sign up with Swagbucks and start watching videos, searching the Internet, taking surveys, shopping online, playing games, and more.

Swagbucks.com will reward you with free gift cards for things that you do online: taking surveys, watching videos, shopping, doing internet searches, and even playing games! Every 100 points you earn equals $1 in Swagbucks that you can save to exchange for gift cards. Participating gift card vendors include Amazon, Walmart, and many others. As a special bonus, you’ll receive a 500 Swagbucks bonus ($5 gift card) if you earn a minimum of 2,500 points within 60 days of registration. 

Getting Free Money Today

9. Be Honest About Poor Service

  • How Much You Can Make: Depends on the cost of your meal.
  • How You Can Make It: If your experience at a restaurant, hotel, or elsewhere fell short of your expectations, tell someone who can make it right.

This isn’t exactly a way to win free money instantly. But if you’re reading this at a restaurant and need free money now, it’s worth knowing.

If you spend your hard-earned money on a service or a meal, remember that you’re entitled to get what you paid for. If your service is sub par, there are ways to mention it to the provider without being rude or looking like someone who simply wants to avoid paying. Many people are uncomfortable making a complaint, but it doesn’t need to be a big scene.

When your server comes around and asks how you’re doing, you can just politely ask for a manager and explain what went wrong. Managers typically want you to enjoy your experience, so most will be accommodating and helpful. So if you aren’t happy with something, speak up. Most reputable places will be glad for the chance to redeem themselves, instead of having you write a terrible review online and then never coming back.

Chances are good that you’ll either get a discount off your bill or a gift card that encourages you to come back to try the restaurant or service again. Remember not to view this as a way ti win free money instantly. Rather, being justly compensated for something you should have received.

10. Download an App and Do Nothing Else

  • How Much You Can Make: $15 after the first week and $5 every month after ($75 per year)
  • How You Can Make It: Just install the Smart App on your phone and go about your day.

Many people who say, “I need money today for free” merely have to download an app to get a few extra bucks. A company called Smart Panel will pay you to simply download their free app. The app’s purpose is to collect anonymous statistics from your phone to help your favorite web sites, apps, and mobile carriers give you better services and features. They want to know how long you’re spending on Facebook each week, what YouTube videos you like, and how often you check your email. Smart Panel is run by Verto Analytics, which is a trusted analytics firm.

How it works:

  1. Visit the Smart Panel website to see if you qualify. If you do, download Smart App from the App Store on your iPhone or from Google Play on your Android device.
  2. Once you’ve qualified and downloaded the app, you will receive $15 after the first week of the app installation. After that, you’ll get $5 per month. That’s $75 after 12 months.
  3. You can redeem your rewards via PayPal or an Amazon gift card.
  4. You can also take surveys to earn more rewards.

11. Win Free Cash by Working out with Your Smartphone

  • How Much You Can Make: Typically around $10-$30 per month
  • How You Can Make It: Download the Pact app, set workout goals, and stick to your word.

Pact is an app that is connected to your PayPal account, and uses cash stakes to help you achieve your health goals on a weekly basis. You set up a weekly pact to exercise a certain amount of days, and if you don’t fulfill your pact, you’ll be charged whatever amount you initially agreed upon as a penalty.

If you do meet your pact, you’ll get paid an amount that varies per week, depending on how many people are signed up at a given time. Typically, awards are around $0.20 per workout. While that may seem small, the rewards increase the higher your stakes are for not meeting your pact. And, even $15 per month can get you a few cups of coffee or help fill your gas tank. For those who don’t need free money now but can squeeze in a workout first, this is for you.

How to Get Money for Free: Final Thoughts

And that’s how to get free cash now — short of robbing an ATM. You can get free money today by any of the above methods. While knowing how to get money for free won’t turn you into a millionaire, an extra few (or few hundred) bucks here and there is always nice. Free money is out there — you just have to look for it, and maybe put in a few minutes of organizational effort.

Always make sure to use common sense. If something sounds too good to be true… While the aforementioned ways to get free cash now are legitimate, there are thieves and crooks out there. Never provide personal information, including your social security number and drivers license. With those cautions in mind, we encourage you to try any of our recommended methods for getting free money. Good luck, and enjoy your extra cash!