The saying goes that you get nothing for nothing. There are supposedly no free rides or easy hacks when it comes to life, and you have to work for anything that’s worth having. That might be true, but there’s also another important idiom that’s worth remembering: work smarter, not harder. These redditors have compiled a list of all the best loopholes and tricks they exploited to get a little extra something out of life, whether that’s at work or at play.

1. Getting your money’s worth

There is a grocery chain that switches their ads out on Wednesday night for the new discounts on Thursday. They have a policy if the item rings up wrong you get the item for free. My local store sucks at pulling down the new adverts so I go shopping on Thursday and just grab all the items that the signs are still up for. I walk out with at least 10-12 items every week because they are too lazy.


2. No-effort overtime

The thing we clocked in on when I worked at Kmart would round to the closest quarter-hour. So by clocking in 8 minutes early, and clocking out 8 minutes after my shift, I got paid for 30 minutes rather than for the 16 minutes. By exploiting this, I was paid 2.5 hours of overtime a week. Cumulatively, during my time there, this added up to about 6.5 weeks of extra pay. I wasn’t ever caught, though.


3. Dressing to impress

I was living near and attending our local university. While working full-time in an economy in the midst of a recession I barely had enough money to pay the bills, let alone eat. The area where I live is very well known for its tourist industry & casinos.

I had quite a few friends who worked in it & would tell me about these MASSIVE employee luncheon cafeterias. At that time there were no id cards or lanyards to be scanned or checked, all you needed was to find it & be dressed appropriately to the employer’s dress code.

After my friend & I did a dry run on one of those trips, in order for me to find it without getting lost I would go it alone. For almost 3 years I had lunch/ dinner for free, learning the peak service times & the dead zones. Even got along with some of the cafeteria workers and custodial crews.


4. Getting the jackpot

I worked out how to get the jackpot every time on a Connect 4 fruit machine in a pub that I used to drink in. It would cost about £5 to £10 before you’d get into the bonus round, and then when you did, you’d play a connect 4 game against the machine.

You place the first counter, and then after the machine places the next counter, you mirror the machines move. Every game ends in a draw, and you win the jackpot, which was £50. The pub landlord removed the machine after around 3 months as it was regularly empty, basically paid for my drinking and more for 3 months!


5. Endless free printing

At our university, each student had a quota of around 50 pages per month you could print in the computer labs for free. After that was used up, you had to pay. However, this credit system only worked on the Mac and Windows machines (this was before everyone and their dog had their own laptops).

Down the hall was a Solaris computer pool (which nobody ever used) where they didn’t get this quota software to run. So the students that knew about this (and were willing to deal with the not so user-friendly Solaris systems) got to print as much as they liked for free.


6. Rolling the dice

There is an app for a local burger chain where it allows you to “roll the dice” to get a code for a free double-patty burger upgrade. It was designed so you could only try it once per day and it even shows the date of the roll on the code so the cashier could verify it. However, I found out that you can just change the date on your phone and try again immediately.

If you got nothing, change it again and just keep going until you get the code. Then, when you got the code, you change the date back to the current date and the app updates the code so it looks like you rolled it today. I got free burger upgrades for years.


7. Teacher privileges

In uni, teaching staff had cards that were coded to provide free coffee, while students had to pay. When you found a staff card, you essentially had free drinks until they blocked the card, usually within the week. However, since the code was on the card, it was possible to read the code from a few different staff cards, identify the unique identifier, and rewrite the card with a new code that included the free coffee part, but lacked the identifier.

I essentially started unblocking cards for everyone who brought me one, hoping I could also extract other permissions from the code on cards people brought me. Never figured out the access codes to the dangerous chemicals before they changed the system, but got close.


8. Being your own parent

When I was in school they sent us home with a form for our parents to fill in. The idea was to collect updated contact information in case anything had changed (phone numbers etc). If you were late to school, the school texted your parents to let them know.

For myself, the usual punishment was a grounding. I was frequently late, so I filled the form with my own phone number and started to receive the text messages that were intended to tell my parents that I was late. Got grounded far less frequently after that.


9. Executive perks

My work laptop died the day before a business trip. Called the IT Dept and explained I was travelling the next day so I needed it fixed quick. It was fixed that day, which was a pleasant surprise since I work at a huge organization where IT stuff usually takes a while.

A few months later I needed some software updated, nothing super important. Called IT expecting them to say “we’ll put it in the queue, probably about a week”. Later the same day someone came to my office to update it for me. I was surprised since it usually took a week.

Looked at the email receipt for the request and saw I was listed as “extreme priority: senior executive/international traveller”. I was neither, but they must’ve flagged me with that since I once told them I was travelling. For the next few years all my coworkers were in awe that I always got same-day IT service for while everyone else had to wait days or weeks.


10. Infinite movies

Saw a movie back in high school and midway through the audio cut out. The theatre handed out vouchers to everyone so they could come back and see another movie. I ended up just flashing the voucher to the ticket takers for months and just walking in. Eventually, someone told me I was supposed to use the voucher to buy a new ticket at the window. Probably saw dozens of movies by doing this lol.


11. Bottlecap codes

This is super weird and I haven’t thought about it in years, but I suppose it was a loophole… Soda companies used to run giveaways where they would put a code under the cap and then you could enter the codes for points, and get free stuff once you had banked enough points.

I was a stock boy at a local grocery store and we had to take care of the bottle return machines also. Any loose caps (and nasty soda juices) would settle in the bottoms of the bags, so on slow nights, we would cut the corner of the bags to drain, and collect any loose caps which I would then wash in the mop sink and take home to bank the codes. I ended up getting some sweet stuff like a few CDs, a zip-up sweatshirt, and even some decent noise-cancelling headphones.


12. Class credit for nothing

I went to a smaller engineering college. They offered a class for “Choir”. I registered, got an email about auditions, showed up at an empty building. Emailed the director/professor once. Never heard back. I promptly forgot about it but got an A for a final grade. Signed up for that class all 8 semesters.


13. Coding for discounts

My local Groupon website had always a 30% discount coupon that changed every day. Once a month you would get one in the mail (Coupon was processed on top of the normal 40% discounts that Groupon has in restaurant’s, so it was a real 70% discount). I noticed that it always started with an L and then four numbers.

So I wrote a python script that every day would send me the daily 30% coupon by testing the 9999 possibilities against the website API that wasn’t properly secured, this took 4 hours to code and less than 20 minutes to run. That year we had dinner at restaurants like if we were middle class, then they patched it, but my GF and I remember it as the golden year.


14. A bus ticket scam

when I was in college, we had this bus that operated on weekends to take people from campus to the closest major city an hour away. To take the bus, you had to buy a $3 token from this machine in the student centre. I figure out that you could buy 400 of these exact same tokens that came out of that machine online through Alibaba for about 10 cents a token.

So I did that, rode the bus all 4 years for 10 cent tokens, and made a profit reselling tokens to other students for $2 each. Never got caught, and when I graduated I still had a good amount left… I just left a stack of like 25 tokens on a table in the student centre for whoever wanted them.


15. Sharing the benefit

Used to work at Starbucks like 7 years ago and they used to print these receipts where if you filled out a survey it would give you a 6 digit code which you could then exchange for a free drink. However, when you gave in the receipt with the code we would just toss it in the garbage and then give the free drink.

So over a shift, I would just keep all the survey receipts when people didn’t want them, write random numbers on them, then keep a wallet full of free coffee. Since I already got tons of free drinks, I would give them to homeless people and explain it was good for a free coffee. Probably gave away like 100 free drinks.


16. Checking in daily

I used to live in an apartment across the road from a casino whilst at University. They released an app where if you “check-in” you get points that go towards free food and drinks. Because I was close enough to the casino I could just check-in without going to the casino itself. Every Saturday I used to get a free burger, fries and drink and watch sport in the sports bar.


17. Crashing the wedding

A boss I had would ‘treat us to dinner’ but we were told that since we were on probation with the company that just purchased ours we needed to be polite and only speak when spoken to. We were all pretty young and barely made enough to live wage-wise so we would look forward to it. We always had to dress up for these outings.

Took us almost a year to figure it out. There was no new company. He was taking us to wedding receptions. It was just 4 of us including him. He would read the local wedding announcements and figure out which ones would be big enough for 4 people to slip in unnoticed. He even did research on the couple so if asked he could pretend well enough to be considered a friend.


18. Trading in for store credit

Microsoft used to have a points store thing back in the late 00s, and my friend wrote a script that let us automagically farm thousands of points with no effort. We used the points to buy retail copies of Windows Vista Ultimate, then took them to Best Buy and returned them for $250 in store credit PER COPY.

In the end I picked up nearly $5000 in store credit, most of which was spent on the Best Buy Private Auction which was an employees-only online store for returns and overstock. Everything was basically half-off. That was an intense scam for a 16-year-old lol.


19. Unlimited minutes

Not sure if it counts as a loophole, but those “Lime” type electric scooters had a promotion that if you refer the app to a friend you and the friend get 10 minutes of riding for free. The way you refer people to the app is by sharing your own personal code. I went to this Facebook group of the area I live in, with around 50k members, and shared my code. I now have around 2000 hours of free riding.


20. Any card, no problem

Years ago I found a parking garage that had a terrible members card system. You inserted your “membership card”, it read it and the gate opened. Only it didn’t read the card, it had a little lever in the back that the card pushed when inserted. So, drive up, insert my Costco card, gate opened and I would drive out.


21. Staying in control

When the new temperature controller units were installed, I was quick to install the corresponding app on my phone and claim them all as mine. I can adjust the temperature from my desk. There are staff that work outside in the summer, come in and turn the thermostat way down. I just reset it to the normal schedule from my desk. I’ve been doing this for 5 years now and nobody has caught me.


22. Transferrable tokens

My dad worked for IBM which sponsored huge employee family days once a year. I convinced my dad to take my best friend, pretending that he was my “brother” so we could enjoy the free snacks. That year the company rented out the whole city convention hall.

They gave every employee an envelope with 10 metal tokens to play video games they had brought in for the event. On a hunch, my friend and I just asked all the childless adults and parents of babies if they wanted their tokens, and many handed them over gladly. We took home about 300 tokens each.

Our theory was correct: the arcade closest to our school had tokens of the same diameter and weight. We would stand in front of the dollar bill machine, drop a handful of our tokens into the output bin to make it clatter convincingly, and played free for two years before the arcade changed tokens.


23. Testing yourself

Back when I was in university I took a Spanish test for credits (being a native Spanish speaker I shouldn’t have been allowed to take the exam). The exam itself cost about $120, but it gave me 12 credits, saving me about 3-4 courses that semester. I don’t know if they’ve taken more measures to determine who can take the exam, but I did take advantage of that and those were the easiest 12 credits of my life. I was allowed 2 hours for the test, finished it in about 30 minutes.


24. Free school lunches

In elementary school, the lunches were paid for ahead of time in little booklets of tickets. On a given day your parents would give you one, or so we thought. Then one day someone told us they found the discarded ticket cup in the “after-school” club.

This was held in the cafeteria for kids who’s parents couldn’t pick them up till after work. There was no way to distinguish a spent ticket from a new one except that they were collected but we had found the collection cup and it was apparently nobody’s responsibility to toss it out at the end of the day.

Fast forward to middle school they still used the same tickets and my friend started to volunteer back at the elementary school as an after-school supervisor! For my group of friends, this meant all the free pizza we could eat at lunch or that we could even just spend a whole ticket on chocolate milk or a treat. We never got caught and ate like fat cats for almost six years.


25. Temporary freedom

I lost my local train line smart card with a weeks ticket still on it. Customer support gave me a temporary one I could use until they sent me a new one. The temp one let me in and out of the gates without loading a ticket to it. It lasted 18 months. I must have saved over £5k on train fare. Then one day it randomly stopped working. The assistant at the gate asked me if I needed help with the card and I politely declined and tapped in with my bank card.


26. Free Canadian parking

There is a mall beside where I work that has a 3-hour parking limit (work charged for parking). I took my car for auto servicing at Canadian Tire there one time and noticed that they used a slip on the dash to identify the car as one worked on by Canadian Tire and free to park there for the day.

I photocopied the slip and parked there daily for over a year and a half before I was caught. One day Canadian tire called me confirming that I was doing what they thought I was…they asked me to move before I got towed. Never parked there again after that.


27. Replacement gig tickets

Bought tickets to Neil Young in like 1993 at Great Woods (outside of Boston). At that time TicketMaster (a BAD company) would send paper tickets in an unmarked envelope. Very easy for a mom to ID as junk mail and throw out. I must have ordered them close to show time so no chance to resend.

When I called they told me to go to Will Call with the credit card I bought them with and they’d reissue. Which they did. So every. Single. Concert. After that I’d just go to Will Call, tell them my tickets never came/mom tossed em/whatever and boom! Double tickets. See kids, back in the day there were no bar codes on tickets. They’d just tear a stub off and you’d be on your way.


28. Double the money, half the work

In high school, I worked as a soda product “pullboy” so instead of grocery stores employees stocking the shelves we would go from store to store ourselves. While working for 1 company (rhymes with “depsi”) another approached me (rhymes with “joke a hola”) and offered me a job. Since both had relatively the same territory I worked for both at the same time and for a long time I got paid double for basically doing 1 job. I miss those days.


29. Flipping textbooks

There was a semester in college where they guaranteed a $5 buyback for any textbook. As long as it had a barcode to ring up, you got $5. Went to Good Will and bought books by the cat for $0.10 each to sell back. Made about $1000 in one day, friends and other students did too. Word got around VERY quickly to the point where all of the local thrift stores sold out of books. The “guarantee” was nixed 48 hours later.


30. Keeping the extra

Used to wait tables at an old steakhouse that would put buy one get one free steak coupons in the local newspaper, the first Sunday of every month. Early Sunday morning like clockwork I would drive around and buy as many as I could, sometimes all of them.

I’d cut them out and keep a couple in my server book as needed for each shift. Then shift after shift, anytime someone would pay cash for their tab, and before the customer got up (or I’d bring back change if needed) I would walk up to the manager and ask for a “comp.”

I would then show the manager the ticket and coupon, and that extra cash went straight into my pocket. This turned $100-$150 nights into $250-$300 nights. Very quick, and honestly too easy. Did it for over a year and a half. Managers never caught on.


31. Gumball lottery

So blockbuster used to have a gumball machine. inside of which like 1/3 of the gumballs had a “free rental” stamp. blockbuster was a 5-minute walk from my school. I saved 50 cents every day of my lunch money by forgoing milk and drinking water. that 50c went toward gumballs every day.

I pretty much rented anything I wanted for free. This went on for like 6 years, till some little s*** caught on. Instead of being subtle about it, he just blatantly brought in a bag of quarters and drained the machine. After which they stopped doing it.


32. Black market tuck shop

About a year after I started secondary school (UK High School) Jamie Oliver (Celebrity Chef) lead a healthy eating campaign which included removing all vending machines from schools. Demand suddenly massively outweighed supply, so every week I’d buy 50-100 packs of 5 snickers, mars bars, kit kat’s, each costing £1, and then sell each chocolate bar for 50p each to pretty much the entire school during my lunch break. I made an unbelievable amount of money for a 14-year-old.


33. One word at a time

I’m pretty sure in the late 90s when we were young teens we had PAYG mobile phones, but we were really broke and could only top up £10 every 2 weeks, but back then texts were about 10p a text and calls were 30p a minute. We always tried to make sure that we didn’t go below 30p credit.

So long as you had over 30p credit that would still allow you to make a call and even connect for 2 seconds without being charged. So we could still communicate with our friends, but just with very short voice calls where you would say something very quick, then hang up.


34. A very extended warranty

I would buy this pair of Skullcandy earphones, and each time a single one would stop working within like 6 months of use. I would replace them with new ones with the 2-year warranty, and for some reason, the store would always give me a new warranty with a new date. This kept going on for like 4 years before they changed their policies. I’ve since probably saved around $300 not having to buy new earphones. use your warranty kids.


35. A crafty solution

I’m a manager at a buffet restaurant. We had these punch cards where if you buy nine buffets you’ll get the tenth free. We originally used hole punches to punch the cards, and they had a certain shape to them so you couldn’t use a regular hole punch.

Came to find out, the local arts and crafts store had the exact same hole punches in stock. So if you could get a hold of several of the cards, you could buy one of the hole punches and get a buffet for free with each card you had. The owners found this out eventually (after a couple years) and switched to stamps with our logo.


36. Rounding up the total

Bank of America has this special promotion on their debit card where whatever you bought they would round up to the nearest dollar and deposit that amount into your account a year later. So if you bought a soda for 1.29, they would deposit 71 cents into your account a year later. I proceeded to the nearest gas station and bought 10 cents of gas at the pump repeatedly for 15 or 20 minutes. I did this numerous times and made like 500 bucks by just buying gas.


37. We’re going to need a bigger box

Working at KFC we would get free food but only allowed to fill one box of chicken. We made it so we would use big ‘carrying’ boxes used to store smaller boxes to steal insane amounts of chicken. The food would all get tossed if we didn’t take it and for the 2 years I worked there I supplied my family with kilos of chicken a week.


38. Just walking away

Not mine, but during the year of 2000 someone I worked with realized that nobody was really paying attention to him at work. He would come in on time, clock in with his key card, go to the bathroom, and then walk out of the building without clocking out. He would then come back to work to clock out at 5pm. He did that for the first 6 months of the year before he was caught. When he was caught they just thought he messed up that one day. This was a major tech company.


39. Making up sources

I attended high school and a few years of college before the internet was (late 90s) what it is now. I hated writing research papers because I always wanted to come up with my own unique snowflake theory and it would be almost impossible to find established sources that supported my thesis. So I just started making them up. I’d totally fabricate papers, books, names, and dates and cite them all in perfect MLA style. I pretty much got my HS diploma and bachelor’s degree in science doing this.


40. Endless iced coffees

Just this year, the Dunkin’ Donuts app had a glitch where you could speak to a virtual assistant about a grievance. If you said you tried to use a coupon that didn’t work, the virtual assistant would give you 200 points as a “sorry for the trouble”. Well, 200 points is exactly how much you need to redeem a free drink of your choice. My friend and I got a lot of free iced coffees before it was fixed.


41. New for old swap

There was this used book/DVD/games/etc store in my college town and their movie rental deal was $3 for a “new” movie (released in the last year or so). Any movies older than that were a dollar to rent. If you returned your movie the next day, they’d refund you a dollar. So you could just rent one movie, return it promptly, get refunded the dollar, and then go back and rent any “older” movie for free. If you returned them all the time, you only ever had to pay for that first rental and got the rest for free.


42. Keeping clean for free

A brand new gas station in my hometown ran a special for their grand opening: free car wash with a gasoline purchase. So I went, got gas, got the code, got the free car wash. I went back by a week later to fill up, and saw signs for the same promotion.

On a whim, I thought, “I wonder if that code still works”. Sure enough it did! I shared the code with my family and all four of us got free car washes whenever we wanted for about three years, until one day the gas station had signs that it was under new management and then it stopped working.


43. Money in the kitty

Our three cats eat a rather expensive dry and canned brand of food. I usually buy it online it cheaper then I can get locally. Someone gave my husband the idea to call the company and see if they offered coupons. He told them how much our cats love their brand and how it is all they will eat.

The sent him a stack of coupons for a free large bag, a free case of cans, and a bunch of half-off coupons. He has been calling them every month and they keep sending out more coupons. It has cut our cat food bill way down and we have been donating more food to our local shelter. Not as big as some here but pretty cool for us.


44. The power of music

My high school wasn’t wealthy but it had a really good gym. A kid had done something stupid which caused the gym to be made out of bounds and shut permanently. I played an instrument and was doing music by distance as the school had no teacher for it.

The Deputy principal decided I could have a key to the gym so I could play in there without being bothered during school hours and afterwards until 6pm when the alarm was activated. I used that gym free of charge for three years and grew from a weedy 5’8” to a solid 6’1” without anyone realising I wasn’t just playing the cello in there.


45. The happiest place on Earth

I once worked for Disneyworld, and when my contract was up, they didn’t take my ID card away so for the next 2 years, I continued to use the employee entrances to all 4 parks. When they started scanning the IDs I would make up an excuse or play dumb. But the security was so used to seeing me, they always just waved me through. Those were the days.


46. Indefinitely delayed detention

In elementary school I got a detention. I think it was for not doing homework. Being like 8 I totally forgot about it and took the bus home. When I got there the next day, I got my punishment for skipping detention. It was a detention. For the rest of the year, I kept skipping detention and then got sent to the office where I received a detention as punishment. Ended the year with over 100, and then we moved away. My parents never found out.


47. A profitable paper round

I had a newspaper route in 7th grade. On Sundays, I would call in a shortage before I even went to the place where I pick up my papers. I’d go deliver my papers, and a while later, a truck would show up and drop off more. Then I’d take the extras and sit out in front of a grocery store.

I would then sell them to people walking in to buy a newspaper, for $1 each. I’d make an extra $20 bucks every Sunday doing this. The guy who had the route before me taught me how to do this. So it had been going on for a while. I used a lot of my money on the Donkey Kong machine in the same grocery store.


48. Beating the queue

When I was in secondary (high) school, every Friday the cafeteria would serve chicken goujons and chips so the line would always be huge (maybe a 30-minute wait). As my name might suggest, I’m a Type 1 Diabetic so I used to tell my teachers I needed to leave class early.

I said this was to ensure I got a place in the line before it got too busy and was fed on time or else I could have an episode. I got away with this for maybe 2 years before the teachers started noticing people give me their money in class and spotted me at a free table guarding 11 servings of chicken and chips.


49. Sleeping on the job

When I was 20 I used to work as a night porter of a hotel. There was only two of us and a manager per night. We had a porter arrangement where one of us would do all the tasks that were required for the night. The other would clock in, grab a bite and unused room, and sleep until the morning staff came in (usually around 7am). We split the weeks in half to accommodate this (worked full-time hours over 4 nights). Fair to say it was the easiest money I’ve ever made.


50. Tickets for tickets

As part of a cross-business partnership promotion, I was getting free arcade gameplay cards at a Dave & Busters type venue that was good for $10 bucks each. They were mostly only good for arcade games but a few ticket dispensing games accepted the cards. This one ticket game I played was easy for me to win.

Also, one of the “prizes” was three free play credits. Before they did away with their paper ticket system, I was averaging 30,000 tickets/hour in winnings. Over a few months, I played enough to win Apple iPod touches, a PSP Vita, and a lot of other smaller stuff.


51. A shop that sells everything

At New Zealand BP petrol stations currently. If you download an app on your phone you get a free $4.80 medium coffee of your choice. The app registers your phone number so you can’t download it twice and get two free coffees. But the same store sells $1.00 sim cards. In conclusion, you can get unlimited $1.00 coffees by just buying a sim and using the store’s wifi to download the app whenever you want.


52. On the clock 24/7

I worked at a company that was around 10 minutes from my house. We were a 24 hour a day business and you clocked in with cards that were kept by the time clock. They started enforcing a rule if you weren’t there 10 minutes early you would get written up.

So I made a deal with someone on a different shift that if I wasn’t there by that time to clock me in. No big deal and it was rare. Then they changed my schedule so I had to be there at 4 am three days a week. I was always late but my buddy would clock me in.

At this job, we had scheduled deliveries and pickups and the person sending us out was the one who was clocking me in. Eventually, it got to the point where she would call me at 4 and tell me what time to be there for the first pickup or delivery. Worked out great and never got in trouble or a single write up.


53. Riding the line

I ride a motorcycle to work and have to cross a toll-bridge every day. I get an electronic statement of my toll charges and noticed that when I ride my motorcycle, I’m often not charged. Eventually, I realized that certain areas of the lane does not register my narrow motorcycle tire, which with a regular car tire (or in the middle of the lane) the pressure would be enough to trigger the plate-reading cameras which ultimately charges me a toll.


54. Pizza and popcorn

I delivered pizzas for a local pizzeria. They had a deal with the movie theatre next door. Free pizzas for free movies. As a delivery driver, I had a jacket with the pizzeria’s logo on it. For about 4 years after I quit the job, I just strolled right into the theater wearing the jacket and probably saw hundreds of free movies.


55. All play and no work

I worked for a large corporate company that tried to set up a new “choose your own hours scheme” for employees. The only rules were that you were expected to work 2 evenings and 1 weekend day every 2 weeks. After that you had free reign over what shifts you could work as long as your total hours was 38.

I chose to work 2×13 hour and 1×12 hour days so I could have 4 days off every week which in itself was awesome! The loophole came about the first time I tried to book a vacation – I was contracted to 25 vacation DAYS per year, the same as everyone else.

Except my days were 1.5 times longer than most peoples and they didn’t factor this into vacation time when writing the contracts. I could take 3 days vacation and have 11 days off work. It meant that I could effectively have an 11-day vacation every month of the year and still receive full pay.


56. An oldie but a goodie

Around 5 years ago I found a pricing mistake in a well-known retailer where it brought the price of an item from $500 clearanced to $120 if you had them look in their old back end system rather than online or their new system. I could only buy 3 per transaction so I went about 1 or 2 times a week to buy them and have them shipped to my house free.

Ended up buying and flipping 200+ units at a $280 profit on eBay, Amazon, Craigslist and other outlets. The retailer also had a points system and a credit card that doubled the points, which I used every time and had over $3k saved up. After a little under a year, I profited over $50k and stopped.


57. Cardboard currency

As kids, I and my little brother and sister would go to a quarter gumball machine and insert a cardboard cutout of a quarter with a little curved hook sticking out. The hook would a latch on the turning mechanism, so it wouldn’t drop down into the coin slot. Result: Unlimited free gumballs. We eventually got caught when our parents found a bucket full of gumballs under my bed. Fun while it lasted though.


58. A bag of bagels

I didn’t use my mandatory 3 meals a day meal plan in college as often as I should have, but when I did I’d bring my backpack into the cafeteria and study and camp out. I was stuffing sandwiches and bagels and whatnot in the bag for later. I don’t know if I ever got “caught.” It’s not like they paid the student workers enough to care.

My roommate had a “legal size” fridge we were supposed to share. Mine was 3-4 times as large as the maximum, so I had plenty of room to store the food from my “study sessions.” A piece of cloth draped over it turned it into an “end table” and the RA wasn’t able to look under the cloth during an inspection.


59. Beach day

Where I’m from, the first Friday in June, everyone from all the schools in the area would skip school and go to the beach and party, there wasn’t parking for thousands so people parked in the road and cops would hand out 60$ tickets to hundreds and hundreds of cars. I would park on the street, and take a ticket from another car and put it under my wiper so they’d drive by.

The odd time I’d “sell” the trick to someone for 10$ (gimme 10$ ill tell you how to avoid that 60$ ticket). The cops would be at the entrance of the beach and would confiscate booze, so we would go to the beach the day before, and dig a hole and bury a couple of coolers, then we’d mark the spot and show up the next day and put our beach blankets overtop.


60. A one-time scheme

Not too long ago this store had a deal where you would get free JBL wireless buds if you purchased an XXL package of shaving razors. However, their return policy was as long as it’s not perishable and it isn’t opened you can return it. Bought the razors, got the free wireless buds and returned the razors to get my money back. Have been using the wireless buds ever since lol.


61. Back to zero

In the early 90’s Kinkos used to use a mechanical cartridge that counted the number of copies you made. You would ask for a cartridge, plug it into the machine and make your copies, then bring your cartridge to the register and pay for the amount of copies it said you made. What we realized was that if you whacked the cartridge hard enough, it would reset the counter to zero.

From then on, we would plug in the cartridge, make our copies, remove the cartridge and reset it then insert the cartridge again and make 4-5 copies which we actually paid for. We made tens of thousands of free show fliers, fanzines, lyric sheets and even stickers until they switched to a prepaid card system.


62. Early internet

I was about to move to a new apartment. I told my ISP that I was going to move in 2 days. They said no problem and to let them know once I move so they could activate my service. Two days later, we’re moving in and I decide to plug in my router before I call them just so I’m ready. Well, lo and behold the internet already works!

I was like cool, they already transferred service. A month goes by and I have yet to get a bill. I double-check my bank account, credit cards, you name and but nothing came through. I double-check next month and the same thing. So I say nothing to them and get free internet for 3 years. It was glorious.


63. A paper-thin scam

The “bus passes” the local council printed to get you to school and back were just laminated coloured paper. There was no validation of them by drivers but they cost £70 for the year at the time. I just got some coloured paper from school supplies and printed/laminated them in the library at lunch.

Then I sold them on the playground for £5 each. I made about £100 over a few weeks but stopped when questions were being asked about why there wasn’t enough room on certain buses. I spent the money on a Gamecube and Smash Bros. Melee. My parents still don’t know where I got the money.


64. Boosting the speed

About 12 years ago my Uni’s halls of residence used a s***ty wired connection for all our rooms with a speed and data capacity (something like 0.5mbs and a 5gb cap per month). I worked out a solution that involved a WiFi booster (I forget the proper name).

I plugged it into the ethernet port, I not only had my own personal secure WiFi network, but it somehow bypassed the data and speed cap. I used this for three year and never paid the disgustingly expensive monthly fee to increase the speed to something moderately acceptable.


65. Inifinite breadsticks

When I worked at Pizza Hut, I was placing a customer’s order for a Tuscani pasta. It comes with breadsticks but I accidentally hit the button twice. It didn’t charge any extra for the second breadsticks. I fixed the mistake and completed the order. Then I went back and ordered some for myself.

I discovered that I could get up to 6 extra breadsticks for no additional cost. After that, every Tuscani Tuesday when they offered their $1 off discount, I took advantage of that deal and the glitch in the system. After I left, I would occasionally go to a Pizza Hut and ask the cashier to follow those steps.


66. Early registration

When I went to college I was accepted into the “Honors Program”. I had no intention of actually doing this due to the extra commitment involved. However, this game with a $1000/year grant + priority scheduling (before all the other students). So I enrolled but didn’t do any of the special classes or anything.

Every year I received a letter with profess toward my “Honors Program” which showed no progress. Took them until my senior year to formally kick me out of that program. But I had since got $4000 + the early scheduling through all of the school (priceless).


67. Acting like a CEO

Back in the day, there was this clothing store that I worked out the online discount codes for. Essentially I went into the store one day and the salesman put in a discount for me which was his name plus the percentage amount of the discount (eg PETER25).

Anyway, I thought that was so simple so I just tried other staff member names and discount amounts. I ended up using the CEOs name plus “80” and I got 80% off everything. It worked for ages until they called me up and asked me who gave m the code. I let them know that I guessed it and the way they do their codes has been changed ever since.


68. Too dark to tell

In high school (in the midwest) I was part of a ski team, sort of due to my inability to make the hockey team, love skiing, anyways…. we were required to buy a season pass for the local ski hill where we trained. The ski pass was usually worn around our boots in a clear armband sort of thing (this was because we would sometimes take off all jackets and pants and race in a GS suit).

Imagine trying to physically verify this in the cold (midwest winter…) and sort of in the dark. I scratched up the plastic sleeve with a key, printed a pass with our c*** hp inkjet printer, cheap reflective stickers cut to match the shapes, clear packaging tape to give it the laminated look. Never was asked, saved $250 per season for three seasons…


69. Parking in all weather

Back when I was in university, parking was handled by getting a ticket and entering the lot. There wasn’t a maximum time for parking so I would park underneath our stadium (heated and weather-protected) and move my car around about twice a week in between classes to avoid suspicion.

Then when it came time to leave or visit home I would simply “forget” my ticket and pay about $20 for multiple weeks of heated and protected parking. The real kicker? The tickets were issued with a 15 minute grace period so if you couldn’t find parking you could leave the lot without paying.

If I was leaving for winter break, I would get one of my buddies to park on the sensor, grab a ticket, back themselves out and use that to leave the lot. I barely ever paid for any exceptional parking throughout my university career thanks to this trick.


70. Missing student

Only exploited it for one year because it was back in school: we had one course where the class was divided into two groups, each group had class every two weeks, and I kept switching groups and never actually attended the class once. Handed in the paper we had to write and showed up for the final, and passed (because it was some “just keep talking/writing about what you think and you’ll pass” class).


71. Opening doors

I used to work out at a 24-hour gym that would give you a plastic card you could scan on the door to let you in. I ended up losing my job and went negative in my bank account. The gym tried to charge me, but couldn’t as I had no money, so my gym membership was cancelled.

Lo, and behold I went to the gym one time with a friend as a guest and tried the card for s***s and giggles. It opened the door. I was dumbfounded and then proceeded to use that card to open any of their locations doors for the next 2 years. I guess someone just forgot to deactivate my card once my membership was cancelled.


72. Earning money for recycling

Back in the early 2000s, I glued a bar code from a soda can to a thin flat piece of plexiglass and would you that for the recycle centre bottle returns and would stand there for an hour with bottles just running the stick back and forth getting 5 cents at a time. Easy 25/30 bucks a hour. Showed some people my trick and within weeks saw dozens of people doing the same thing. They changed the machines out with in weeks of that. Short two-month run.


73. Treated like royalty

In 2009 as a consultant, I used to spend about 50 nights per year in Marriotts. This was enough to have status but not the highest tier. One evening in Boston I had to book a night unexpectedly and didn’t have my rewards number handy. When I gave him my name, the man at the front desk pulled up my info and his eyes kind of went wide.

“Oh, Mr. L! We will upgrade you to the suite. Thanks for being such a loyal member.” They treated me like royalty with a bunch of other perks and it took me a full day to realize that they had mistaken me for my father, who did at least 120 days per year.

The next time I booked a room I used my last name and my father’s number, and BOOM, the two of us became a mega member. The system didn’t even care if we were both booked in different cities on the same night. We double-dipped on the same number for a good 5 years before they got wise.


74. Beating the game

Taco Bell used to have this little spinning levels thing where you would drop a dime in and try to land it on the bottom level and get a free burrito. Well I figured out if you just dropped it on the first one and tapped it repeatedly it would fall down each level and eventually on the last one.

9 times out of 10 I would win it and get a free burrito for 10 cents every lunch in high school. The employees just sat there watching me cheat the system with a semi annoyed expression but there wasn’t any rule against it. Pretty sure Taco Bell got rid of it because of me alone.


75. Delivering the reviews

I use Google Rewards which is a survey app that gives you anywhere between 5 cents to 80 cents per survey. The surveys you receive are based on the businesses you visit. Sometimes you can get multiple a day and sometimes you get none. I work as a delivery driver and every time I return to the shop it counts as a new visit towards a business.

I’ve gotten up to 6 per day all for my shop. It asks me if I spent money and I say no and it still gives me at least 30 cents usually. I’ve been able to rent/buy movies from google play and buy in-app purchases at no cost to me. I’ve been doing it for over a year.


76. Cheating the fountain

On my college campus (2016-2017) there is a Panera bread in our central study hall. They had tablets where you could order food without interacting with anyone. They had cups and soda fountain next to the tablets, no employees watching this area of the store.

Me and my friends would go in all the time, tap the tablet a couple of times to look like we were ordering something, then get ourselves a free cup of coffee, soda, whatever. Panera eventually put up signs warning people against stealing drinks but never moved the cups… So many kids knew this trick and I like to think those undergrads are still scamming Panera to this day.


77. Visiting colleges

I’m in high-school, senior year, it was an excused absence if you missed school to tour a college. Most colleges would date the form you used to pass into the dean for an excused absence, but one specific school never did. I made photocopies and dated the form myself.

I skipped every Friday during my senior year of high school. Due to either negligence or a rotating shift on who would collect tour forms during the week, I was never caught (my school had like five thousand kids so it’s not like I would stand out).


78. International membership

In the late 90s before we were married, she moved to England for a year on a teacher exchange program. Whilst there she wanted to go to a Costco outside London. She went to the service desk, showed her membership card and asked about purchasing a UK membership.

They immediately said they would just exchange it for United Kingdom card at no charge. At the end of her exchange, we got married and then moved to Canada. On our first visit to a Canadian Costco, we showed our (still valid) UK card in order to enter.

However, it wouldn’t scan as the UK and Canada systems were not linked. She had to get a Supervisor to perform a manual override. We clued in to this loophole and continued to show our UK card for 5 years before the systems were finally updated and globally linked to show our card as expired.


79. Impersonating a parent

When I was a high school student I got sick one time. And my school used a system where if a kid got sick, their parent was able to just sign in and let the school know of their child’s absence through this system. And so one time I had my mum sign in onto my phone. And I just never logged her out.

This meant anytime I wanted a day off, I could skip school and tell the school that I was just feeling unwell and My parents would never be notified. I abused this for 3-4 years before I eventually graduated, and that’s when I came clean to my parents about it.


80. Skippable non-skippable ads

I use a MacBook Pro with a touch bar, and whenever a video plays in safari, the touch bar shows a timeline of the video where you can scroll left and right within the video (like the red bar on the bottom of a YouTube video). This also works on ads you normally can’t skip, so whenever I watch an ad starts playing on YouTube, I just scroll it to the right and it’s gone in an instant.


81. Taking the back road

The entrance line to my highschool was unbearable at times. I lived in a different town from where my school was so I had a small commute every morning. One morning I see my calculus teacher speeding down the interstate. I kinda tail him to try to wave hi and I see him take a back road into the school.

It was closer to the interstate exit and completely free from any sort of line. I tried taking the back road but was extremely afraid of getting in trouble with school security since I assumed it wasn’t allowed. One morning I’m driving through the back gate as a security car pulls to the stop. I’m s***ting bricks thinking I’m going to get written up when the guy driving gives me a smile, a wave, and drives away. Rest assured, I never took the front entrance again.


82. 100% employee discount

I use to work in a Waitrose. Before their check-outs (we can them tills) were updated with modern software, employee discount would apply the full amount off reduced food prices. So we got 15% off. If you combined reduced items (about to expire at 90% off) with your employee discount, the computer would take your total into a negative amount.

This would even work if you combined it with coupons! Then you could go ahead and add whatever you wanted in order to bring the cost up to an even £1. I once saw a colleague do this and get a free kettle. They soon changed the system to stop people from doing this.


83. Files for free

I’m so late on this post but Amazon Music downloads. Back when it first came out, they had just implemented the “Buy with one click” and the song would instantly download. I was a broke high school student and had an empty prepaid visa card on my account. The “one click” thing would go through and the song would immediately download.

About a minute later I’d get an email saying that my payment didn’t go through and the song is no longer available on my Amazon account. However, I still had the full file downloaded on my computer. I got thousands of free songs over about 2 years before they fixed that lol


84. Failing on purpose

I didn’t do this, but around a decade ago when I was in college, I began a diploma that required deadlines on every assignment handed by your lecturers and tutors. Well, some guy in our course got lazy and didn’t really stick to these deadlines and quickly got snowed under with a lot of work.

That was until he realised that you could get an automatic extension on any piece of work submitted by two weeks if you had failed the assignment. So, he simply handed in a blank sheet of paper to the submission office every time deadline came around and it got extended by two weeks automatically. This effectively meant he had no deadlines and could do the work at his own pace.


85. Game money for real money

My credit card gave me 1.5% back on purchases. There was an online game that allowed you to both buy and sell in-game currency from other players and you actually made a small profit doing so (there was a small spread, it had limit and market buying and selling).

I would put in a limit buy order for $5,000 of game currency with a credit card on Monday (which would clear by Wednesday), then relist that exact same currency for limit sell which would clear by the end of the weekend for a total of $5,250, and get $75 back on the credit card, cash out to my checking account (no fees), pay off the credit card, and repeat. Did this once a week for a “free” $300/week for about four years, which also made my credit go way up.


86. Return to sender

A little different because rather than being found out, I just outgrew it, but the collect call “momI’matthecornerofcarsonandclark” trick others have shared reminded me of how my best friend and I would send postcards to each other (across town) without using a stamp. We’d just put the other’s address as the return address and it would get “returned to sender.” They wrote upon it “Return to sender” Address unknown No such number No such zone


87. Getting your foot in the door

Backing the day there was this spot I would go to play pool, it had a vending machine. The vending machine was the spiral kind that would sometimes get your items stuck against the glass, and also had a flap that would go up with the door so you couldn’t reach up in the machine.

Me and my friends learned that the sensor that would let the machine know it successfully dispensed an item was in the bottom, below the flap. So the trick was to lift the door/flap and catch the item you wanted, and while still crouched down and holding the flap.

Do that and you can reach the return money button and then get your money back, after you would drop the flap and get your item for free. You could do this indefinitely as long as you held the flap up. Took a couple of years before they replaced the machine.


88. A back and forth profit

Best Buy & Future Shop in Canada alternated sale items. I’d buy the item on sale at one store and return it without a receipt to the other store for a store credit. Use the credit to buy something on sale at that store and go back to first store. Once started with $20 and walked out with a $700 graphics card a few hours later.


89. Studying on paper

At a place I used to work they would offer tuition reimbursement up to like $5K a year. The first time I tried to get reimbursement I went and got all the documents I needed from the school. Grades, receipts for books, receipts for tuition, and so on.

They declined it because they were not on “School Letterhead” so I said, f*** it” and made my own letterhead and made my own receipts, grade report, etc. And resubmitted and it got accepted! The next semester I got a grant so I didn’t have to pay tuition.

However, I submitted my reimbursement anyways since I could get whatever grades and say I paid whatever I wanted and it worked again. I did this for about 8-9 years. Sometimes I wasn’t even enrolled in classes at all. It was like a bi-annual bonus check.


90. Gaming the system

This was not a yearly thing but for a brief moment in time I worked at Target. While there I discovered a bug in the system for a video game sale. It was a buy two get one free special which meant you could choose two video games and get a third for free.

Typically in these sales, the third is of equal or lesser value but for some reason, it worked with whatever item had been scanned last and that would count as your third option. Discovering this flaw I secretly told some coworkers about the bug I’d found.

We tried purchasing two ~$14.99 video games and huge special edition $100+ games. It worked. Over the next few hours we had purchased several of these long sought after special bundles at a heavily reduced cost and told no one until the sale was over.


91. Favourite flavour

I generally eat all flavours of crisps/chips. I have some that I favour more than others but won’t be disappointed if I had any flavour given to me. I knew which ones in the multipacks that my family liked and which ones they didn’t so used to pick the ones that everyone liked in the household when given the choice (I didn’t do this purely for the loophole, they were what I would have considered my “favourite”).

But I soon worked out that by eating the favourable flavours there would also be a surplus of the other flavours that nobody liked bar me (prawn cocktail, beef and onion, BBQ, Worcestershire sauce etc.). With this little surplus (and my parents knowing I would eat them) I was often allowed a double helping before they were replenished, meaning younger me was allowed more snacks than my siblings.


92. The writing’s on the wall

In our spelling tests, from grades 1-3, we had to add 2 extra words that we chose. To seem smarter I always chose long and hard words but in reality, they were words that appeared somewhere in the classroom (like Vocabulary, or geography) and I just straight up copied them from where they were written.

This one time, when I was in the third grade, my teacher asked me which word I chose before the test. After I told her, she said, “that’s a great word! I’ll go cover it up on the wall.” As a result of this, I sadly was not able to use that trick again.


93. Coupons for cash

In high school, I worked at a gas station and they used to send coupons on the mail for x off per litre. I lived in an apartment building and everyone would throw the coupon books in the trash by the mailbox, so I collected them. At the gas station, the coupons were treated exactly like cash. So I would bring the coupons in and at the end of the night, exchange a bunch of the coupons for cash. Never got caught. Only stopped when I quit.


94. Basketball wristbands

Student season tickets for basketball at my university weren’t expensive but were hard to get because of the demand. When they let you in the arena they took your ticket and gave you a tag that you had to wear to get into the student section, and back in the building if you went outside.

Each game was a different colour. I saved all my tags, then the next year, I would just show up and see what colour they were handing out, then I would sift through all my tags, then waltz in like I had been grabbing a smoke. This trick worked for two years.


95. Just out of date

In the mid-90s Kroger had a policy that if you found out of date meat then you would get store credit for the same amount as the original price. My roommates and I would go to Kroger just after midnight and find the most expensive out of date meat by one day (millet mignon, ribeye, etc…) and exchange it for chicken and eat all week for free. Surprisingly we were able to get away with this for about a year.


96. Tipping the scales

The local grocery chain had a very well-stocked salad bar, the medium container was six bucks. I used to jam like 1.2kg of food into it pretty much every day for lunch and dinner. Did this for about a year before every location eventually switched to $2.50/100g. I didn’t notice, did my usual thing and my salad was over $18!!

Then I figured out you could put half the container just on the raised edge of the scale and pay for half. They soon figured out that the second scale in the bagging area ‘self-checkout’ should be balanced with the first scale. Got caught a couple of times and just played dumb. No more salad bar scams for me.


97. How many buttons?

The company I still work for used to say that to be in uniform, your shirt must be “buttoned”. Neglected to say how many buttons had to be fastened. So I regularly showed up to work with only the bottom two buttons my shirt clasped. Showing off all my chest hair like it was the 70’s. For two years, until they added an “only the top two buttons may remain unfastened” rule.


98. White wine for days

I worked at a yacht club when I was in high school. I wasn’t a custodian, but had some light custodial duties, and one of them was to clean out the freezer in the self-serve bar. Apparently, club members would regularly throw bottles of white wine into the freezer to cool off in a hurry, forget about them and then the bottles would explode.

No one would ever own up to it, so a part of my job was to clean the frozen wine and broken glass from the freezer, count corks or bottle caps and issue a note so they could write off the correct number of bottles of wine. I quickly figured out that I could get free bottles of white wine really quickly.

So I started leaving with a bottle of wine almost every shift. I was 17, and had a collection of 30-40 bottles of wine before the club finally invested in a machine that would chill bottles really quickly. Lots of my high school drinking was subsidized by rich yacht club members and their forgetfulness.


99. Second-hand library

Professors at college get sent brand new, free copies of textbooks to look through and convince them to use in their classes. At my college, there was an “Education Department Work Room” with a laminator, those big cutting machines, etc., for the Ed students to use to prepare their lessons and a general workroom.

There was a side room, which was a “library” where the professors typically put their rejected free textbooks from textbook companies. One day I was in there working when I picked one of these textbooks off of the shelf to look at and thought, “damn, how much is this thing??”

Didn’t take much for me to realize I could resell these things for 100s of $$. I sold dozens of those and walked away with enough money to visit my girlfriend at the time across the country, all expenses paid. I never told anyone until years later, after I graduated.


100. Helping out a friend

I used to work at an electronics retail chain (now out of business). I worked in one of the departments that paid by sales commission, though there were other employees that were paid hourly. As someone on commission, we were given codes that we could share with those workers, as a way for them to help with the checkout process but still give monetary credit to those who helped the customer.

I was friends with a lot of hourly workers, and just told them to put in my code whenever they checked someone out. If someone questioned it, they would just say that I helped the customer beforehand. It must have increased my paycheck by at least 30% for the year I worked there and I got praised by my manager for being “all over the store”.