Product: Freester (also Roadsave)
$1 every 16 days ($2/month) $9.95/month
Website: freester.com, roadsave.com
An affordable coupon/discount site (monthly membership changed to almost $10/month…as of November 2015) which has some advantages, but may not be much benefit to the vast majority of people. Their greatest perk (25 rebates to Target, Walmart and various restaurants) has been taken away, making it mostly useless. Use with caution as they have the right to change pricing with no warning.
What is Freester?
Freester is a discount site that offers all sorts of perks from weekly coupons, movie/themepark/broadway discounts, roadsite assistance, medication discounts, and even a yearly subscription to your choice of magazine. I’ll admit that I thought it was cool at first. Since it was only $2 per month, I signed up thinking I could definitely get some use out of it, even if I only just used the coupons and magazine subscription. (Now $9.95/month)
But honestly, the reason I signed up is because I heard they offered $25 rebates to Walmart, Target and various restaurants. Basically all you have to do is post your receipt online from a shopping trip to Target or Walmart in which you spent a minimum of $25, and Freester will mail you a $25 rebate check. The best part? You could do it once per month! Pretty cool, right?
Well, after signing up I find out this service is no longer available, which really makes this program way less valuable.
But are the other discounts and perks provided actually legit, or will Freester scam you out of a bunch of money? Programs like this can be notorious for putting secret charges on your credit card without your permission, or making you pay for services they told you were free. After signing up and being ever so disappointed that the rebates were no longer offered, I did quite a bit of digging to see if the rest of the membership perks were actually beneficial or just a bunch of talk.
Weekly Coupons in the Mail
Freester will let you pick out individualized, pre-cut coupons and they’ll mail them to you at no extra cost. You are allowed to pick up to $12 worth of coupons each week, so that’s not bad as it’s a $48 monthly value.
Although if you already get the Sunday paper you may have access to very similar type coupons without paying $2 extra a month.
Also, many major grocery stores run loyalty programs that include savings and coupons very similar to the ones offered here, except they’re electronic and completely free. All you need to do is swipe a card or enter a number for your coupons to get discounted… which makes everything much easier!
Here’s 2 weeks worth of coupons they have sent me:
But one thing I really like is these are coupons of stuff I already buy and they’re either for individual items or on 2 purchases. That is the big thing I hate about coupons… many times they’re some random product I never would have bought in the first place, or you have to buy 4 of them to even get the deal!
I picked out coupons for stuff I need and buy on a consistent basis anyway – Tampax tampons, Secret deodorant, razors, shaving cream, Vaseline brand lotion (the good stuff), Ziploc bags, toilet paper, Listerine, Lash Blast mascara, Energizer batteries.. and even a pack of coupons for Red Lobster. Many of them are for between 1 – 2 dollars off, there are even a few for 3!
One thing that sucks about these coupons, however, is the only ones they offer have very soon approaching expiration dates. At the beginning of October, 95% of the coupons offered expired by the end of that month. Considering I have to wait about a week for the coupons to come in the mail, that only gives me a few weeks to actually use them.
Update – after using this for about a year now, I can say I absolutely hate the coupons and they’ve pretty much proven worthless for me. The only ones that are any good are the personal care/makeup ones, except they don’t offer much variety at all! Also, they’re ALWAYS almost expiring so once I get the coupon, I’ll only have a week or two max to use it. I’d have to match sale prices and constantly stock up on tampons, facewash, deodorant, mascara, etc to use up the coupons, but I only buy that stuff for ME and it takes forever to go through some of it… I don’t need 5 years worth of that stuff sitting around my house.
Also, often times the coupons will be for the most expensive brands out there. I would frequently find different brands that were lower priced even after coupon discounts.
All members have access to their 24/7 roadside assistance service, which covers up to 3 $100 claims per year. It provides towing to the nearest service station, jumpstarts, changing flat tires and 2 gallons of fuel delivery. If you’re only interested in their roadside assistance, make sure you don’t already have it through another provider. Many people already have access to roadside assistance through other means like their insurance or car warranties.
Also keep in mind with someting like roadside assistance, you get what you pay for. With a $2 monthly membership fee to a service that doesn’t specialize in roadside assistance, it can’t be that great.
Yearly Magazine Subscription (your choice)
This is a pretty nice offer as the yearly price of Freester is about equivelent to a yearly magazine subscription anyway. And they don’t just offer crap; they have nearly 50 popular magazines to choose from such as Seventeen, Entrepreneur, The Atlanic, Weight Watchers, Shape, and many more.
I’ve been receiving my magazine monthly, although it did take about 3 or 4 months for them to send me my first issue.
Monthly $25 Walmart or Restaurant Rebates
This was definitely the best perk offered so if you are interested in it strictly because of this, I am sorry to be the bearer of bad news.
They really push their members to participate in the cash for surveys program, which pays $1.30 per survey completed. But be careful with these – you are required to pay $1 PER SURVEY! That means you’re really only getting 30 cents for each one you complete. They take awhile to complete, too. As with all online surveys, you’re just going to be wasting a lot of time for barely any money (less than minimum wage). And if you really want to take surveys online, there’s entirely free programs for that.
Pharmacy Discount Card
They claim as a Freester benefit that you’ll get a membership to USA Health Alliance, but if you actually go the their website you’ll find out that this program is available to anyone for 100% free… so it’s not really a perk at all.
While it is a legitimate health discount card, you can’t use it in combination with your insurance so it’ll only be available to medications not covered with insurance. If you don’t have insurance, it can probably save you a few extra bucks.
Discount Hotels/Vacation Rentals/Movies
They provide you with “discounts” to various things like theme parks, Broadway plays and car rentals like Hertz. But if you do any sort of research online you can probably find an even better deal somewhere else, without a special membership fee.
For example, I noticed Freester had tickets for Matilda the Musical on Broadway for $90 a piece. They declare a savings of $20 per ticket, but a quick Google search for the same tickets (in the same section) led me to showtickets.com where I found them for $87… $3 CHEAPER per ticket than the “deal” you get with Freester!
… but you can get the SAME seats (same section and row) for $3 cheaper for free at an online ticket site…
You can also buy discounted tickets to theme parks at places like AAA or even Walmart for comparible savings.
This is the reality and is true for these “discount” offers with sites like this. They’re often not as good as other discounts you can get online or elsewhere for completely free.
Free Long Distance Calling
This is only usable on a home phone line. Most people don’t have home lines anymore…
Most people these days use Windows 7 or 8 or Mac, and it’s only offered to Windows XP or Vista users. Even if you do happen to use XP or Vista, the help offered is extremely limited and most likely wouldn’t be of much benefit.
Watch out for their Terms of Service…
Most companies will put within their terms they have the right to raise prices, but any decent one would at least inform their customers of it beforehand. It isn’t likely that any future price hike would be drastic, but you never know. It’s always good to be aware of how much you are actually being charged for any service, and any company that claims they can raise prices without warning is a red flag in my book.
Another thing that led me suspicious was the fact they state within their terms cancellation is only possible by providing 30 day prior written consent. That seems a bit ridiculous as I’ve never encountered a company that had that sort of policy before, so I called them to clarify. I was informed that it’s not necessary to provide written consent and cancellation by calling their customer service line is sufficient.
Still though, calling and canceling these types of things isn’t a piece of cake. Their reps are trained to follow script and get you to stay a member no matter what, so you have to just keep saying “no” a million times. It’s rather annoying and I hate dealing with it.
As of November 2015 they are now charging $9.95/month for “Roadsave membership”
I noticed on my billing the price they charged went from $1, every 16 days to nearly 10 bucks a bunch.. that is a HUGE jump in price if you ask me, and of course they did this with NO WARNING!
Here is my billing statement:
I was curious about what the heck the Roadsave Membership even was, so I Googled and found out they have another website – roadsave.com which is identical to Freester. Sure enough, when I logged into roadsave.com my membership details worked and I was a member! The home page looks a bit different than Freester’s, but once you log in it is the same program and all.
This is a huge red flag and I am cancelling TODAY!
Is Freester worth it?
Since the $25 rebates to Target and Walmart were taken away, this program is no longer worth it in my opinion. (Also, definitely not since they increased the charge to $9.95/month!) The coupons and magazine subscription are cool perks, but you can find those easily without a membership fee. While Freester isn’t any sort of scam, you probably don’t need to be a member here to save money.
There’s a difference between thinking you’re getting a deal and actually getting a deal. Most of the services and perks offered are available for free elswhere and you can find better deals on parks, entertainment and car rentals than the ones offered from Freester.
I would spare your credit card from another monthly fee and find these perks for free elsewhere.
If you want to make money online, you’re not going to be very successful with methods like the “paid surveys'” inside Freester.