Once you learn these tips for scoring freebies for your wardrobe and your crib, you can really get your swag on.
Step 1: Go to events Stay on top of your local events calendar so you can be front and center at the hottest events that have free stuff.
TIP: Show up at events like advance movie screenings, company parties, industry conferences, awards shows, political rallies, and celebrity appearances.
Step 2: Volunteer Volunteer at a convention, fundraiser, community play, or concert in exchange for promotional gear or just access to the full bar. Sometimes you have to give a little to get a little.
Step 3: Use promotions Watch your mailbox for valuable buy-one-get-one coupons, store discount cards, and similar promotions.
TIP: Combine a big money saving coupon with already marked down pricing to get an item for free or close to it.
Step 4: Look online Search for free samples and trial offers of your favorite products online. Or if you want to browse, check out the many websites that are dedicated to free samples and coupons.
TIP: Do an internet search for the brand name and the word "coupon" or "code" before buying anything online. Entering coupon codes can quickly save you big bucks.
Step 5: Join an online swag site Earn fast and easy swag through online swag sites by doing online searches or filling out surveys. Look for other sites that let you earn contest entries by playing a free game or through friend referrals.
Step 6: Be in the right position Get a direct line to promoters by finding work at a doctor's office, magazine, or radio station -- anywhere salespeople try to curry favor with the business by giving away samples of their product and other favors.
Step 7: Avoid scams Don't waste your valuable time or money trying to get free laptops and such from obvious scams. Many scam e-mails and websites will come from outside the U.S., use improper English, and ask for personal information like credit card and bank account numbers. Don't let getting ripped off cramp your swag-master style!
FACT: A goodie bag given to George Clooney at the 2006 Academy Awards sold for $45,000 after he donated it to charity.