Weird gifts from friends and family aren't the only things you can score on your birthday. With a little advance planning, you can get lots of freebies.
Step 1: Start with a free meal Many chain restaurants offer a free birthday meal for adults, and some places have special plans for kids 10 years or younger. Check chain web sites and register yourself or your kids beforehand. Many offer a free meal throughout the birthday month.
TIP: Call before you go to collect your birthday treat – not all franchise locations participate.
Step 2: Visit a theme park Look for free theme-park admission. If you sign up online two weeks ahead of your birthday with Disneyland Parks, you can get in to one park on the day of your birthday for free. Registering at Six Flags' web site for a birthday party of ten or more gets you free parking and admission.
TIP: Make sure to bring a picture ID that verifies your birth date.
Step 3: Savor an ice cream scoop Visit ice cream parlor web sites now and sign up to get a free ice cream on your birthday.
Step 4: Ski free Winter babies can visit a number of ski resorts that offer free lift tickets on your birthday with a valid ID.
Step 5: Rent a movie At some chain video stores, one movie rental is on the house on your birthday.
Step 6: Get a free dance If you're a guy (or a girl who likes to get lap dances), head to your nearest strip club. They often provide a free lap dance to a customer celebrating their birthday, especially if they're with a big group of generous pals. At the very least, get a free drink from the bartender!
Step 7: Hit the bars If you're over 21, no birthday is complete without a round of drinks. A complimentary shot or beer is practically a given at any bar.
FACT: "Win," "free," and "sex" are the three words most likely to catch a reader's attention.