PARENTS can claim free nappies, baby wipes and even Lego magazines for their little ones – we explain the best offers.
Families are more financially stretched than ever due to the coronavirus crisis, so it makes sense to cut back where you can.
It comes as latest figures from the Child Poverty Action Group show the total cost of raising a child until the age of 18 is £152,747 for couples.
This rises to an eye-watering £185,413 – an increase of £33,000 – for single parents.
To help you save money, we've teamed up with bargain hunters at Magic Freebies and self-confessed coupon queen Holly Smith to find the best deals for parents.
Alice Gerwat, senior content editor at Magic Freebies, told The Sun: "Baby product companies always have freebies on offer to make it cheaper and easier to try before you buy.
"We always have at least a couple of baby freebies on the site, and we've seen everything from free baby grows and nappies, to free food, baby wipes, nappy rash creams and plenty more."
Money saving tips for parents
BECOMING a parent can be expensive so to help you out, we’ve put together six top tips to cut costs, nab freebies and to make sure you’re not fined.
- Free prescriptions and dental care – Prescriptions cost £8.60 a pop in England, while NHS dental costs vary by location. You can get both for free while you're pregnant and for 12 months after your baby's due date. Ask your doctor or midwife for a maternity exemption certificate (MATEX) to claim the free care.
- Free milk, infant formula, vitamins or fruit and veg – Under the Healthy Start programme, you may be entitled to the freebies if you're at least 10 weeks pregnant or you have a child under four and you're on certain benefits, such as Universal Credit.
- £500 free grant – In England, Northern Ireland and Wales you may be entitled to a Sure Start grant of £500 if you're on certain benefits and expecting your first child or expecting more than one baby – such as twins.To claim, you need to fill out the following form on Gov.uk and get your doctor or midwife to sign it.
- Register the birth in time or face a £200 fine – You need to register the birth within 42 days of your baby being born with your local registry office. This costs £11 in England and Wales.
- Update a will or update it – If you don't have a will, in England, Northern Ireland and Scotland, where one parent dies, children will only inherit cash if the estate is worth more than £250,000 – otherwise all the money will go to the surviving spouse. If you don't want that to happen, you need to get a will stating your wishes.
- Consider getting life insurance – No-one likes to think about death but if something happened to you, could the family survive without your salary? If not, you many want to consider life insurance. Use a comparison service to find not only the cheapest, but the most suitable cover for your needs.
Holly, who is pregnant with her fourth child, added: "Baby freebies are extremely easy to find online – I’ve have never had to purchase nappy cream as I have so many samples!
"It’s also worth emailing baby brands asking for free samples. I’ve been writing to nappy brands and have enough new-born nappies to last me two months."
1. Free nappy from Pampers
Parents can request a free sample of Pampers size four nappies via its website.
Size four nappies are typically for babies that weigh between 22lbs to 37lbs.
To get your freebie, you'll need to register on the Pampers website – this is free to do.
Click the "get your free sample" button and you'll be asked for your details, such as your name, address and age of your baby.
You should note that the freebie is only for one single nappy – but it could still be a good way to test out Pampers before investing in a whole pack.
A 24-pack of Pampers size four nappies is typically worth £5.50.
We've asked Pampers how long the sample takes to arrive and we'll update this article when we know more.
The Sun is also checking if different nappy sizes are available.
2. Free "Pull-Up" pants from Huggies
For older tots, you can also get a free Pull-Ups sample from Huggies.
Again, the tester could be a good way to try out the pants before buying a whole pack.
It comes as part of a "Big Kid Game Pack" which also includes free stickers for your little one to play with.
You'll need to fill out a form on the Pull-Ups website to register for your freebie.
When you're filling in your details, you'll be able to choose from nine to 18 month, 18 month to three years, or two to four year pants.
We're checking with Huggies on how long delivery takes.
3. Free baby wipes from Pura
If you're looking to be more sustainable, Pura is giving away a free 24-pack of its 100% biodegradable baby wipes.
You also get two disposable bags made from potatoes as part of the sample pack.
To get the freebie, sign up to the Pura website – this is free to do – and simply add it to your basket.
You will, however, still pay 99p for delivery.
Pura usually sells a box of 28 packs of 24 baby wipes for £22.10.
4. Free baby grow from Cow & Gate
Register for the Cow & Gate loyalty club – known as the C&G Baby Club – and you'll get a free baby grow.
The C&G Baby Club is free to sign up to and you'll be able to pick what size baby grow you get.
Sizes include newborn to six months or six to 12 months.
However, the freebie is limited to the first 15,000 people who sign up.
5. Free Lego magazine
Lego fans can get a free magazine subscription, with a new edition released four times a year.
To get the deal, you’ll need to sign up on LEGO’s website, sharing details including your child’s name and date of birth, your email and your home address.
You won’t have to pay to get the mag delivered as shipping is free too, and the mag will come every three months.
The next issue is due in February but you can download the latest magazine from November 2020 from the website.
What help is available for parents for childcard costs?
CHILDCARE can be a costly business but here is how you can get help:
- 30 hours free childcare – Parents of three and four-year-olds can apply for 30 hours free childcare a week. To qualify you must work at least 16 hours a week at the national living or minimum wage and earn less than £100,000 a year.
- Tax credits – For children under 20, some families can get help with childcare costs.
- Tax-free childcare – Available to working families and the self-employed, for every £8 you put in the government will add an extra £2.
6. Free height chart from Bear Paws
If you like to keep track of how quickly your child is growing, get a free height chart from Bear Paws.
The height chart is free, but you'll need to upload a photo of a recent receipt showing a Bear Paws purchase to get it.
Bear Paws sell fruit snacks for kids, with packs costing around £2.45 from Asda.
Once you've uploaded your receipt, enter your details including your name and address.
We're checking how long delivery takes and we'll be updating this article.
7. Free pyjama pants from Dry Nites
Dry Nites lets your little one test out a free sample through its website before you invest in a whole pack.
Choose from pants that are for ages three to five years, four to seven years, or eight to 15 years.
Like with other samples, you'll need to register with your name, address and age of your child.
Dry Nites says your freebie should arrive in seven working days.
Packs of nine Dry Nites pants typically sell for £5 in the supermarkets.
8. Free book from Little Dish
Lockdown means more time for reading, and you can get a free book for your little one by joining the Little Dish Book Club.
It's free to join – you'll need to register your name and address – and you'll get a £1 voucher off your next Little Dish purchase as part of your welcome pack.
You can also download a free height chart through the club.
Again, we're checking how long it takes for your freebie to arrive.
9. Free pregnancy pack from Emma's Diary
Mums-to-be can sign up for free pregnancy packs via Emma's Diary.
There are four different packs available for different stages of pregnancy and when your baby arrived.
With each one, you'll get samples of different products like vitamins, nappy cream and baby wipes.
To get the freebies, you need to register with Emma's Diary and either download its free app, or download vouchers from its website.
Once you've got your vouchers, or if you're using the app, you can pick up your baby packs in Boots or Argos.
10. Free baby clubs from Asda, Boots and more
Holly recommends mums-to-be join free baby clubs for discounts and offers that are tailored to parents.
With the Asda baby club, you can enter competitions to win free products as well as exclusive offers for parents.
Shoppers will also be notified first for when a baby sale is due to hit stores.
Boots' baby club lets you earn eight points for every £1 spent on baby products, as well as free gifts at key stages of your baby's development.
You'll also get parenting offers via the Boots app.
Other baby clubs to sign up for include SMA, Piccolo and Aptamil.
Tesco used to have a stand-alone baby club but it's now part of its Clubcard scheme.
If Clubcard holders make a lot of baby-related purchases, they'll be offered specific parenting vouchers depending on what they usually buy.
Here are 15 ways to get freebies on your birthday including doughnuts, prosecco and luxury beauty products.
We've also rounded up retailers, including Boohoo and PrettyLittleThing, that will give you money off if you recycle old clothes.
Plus, here's how to make hundreds each week using odd-job sites.
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