You're probably aware that few things in life are ever truly free, but it's still important to think of the other costs associated with "free" stuff. More often than not, a freebie will cost you something that's far more valuable than anything else you have: your time.
Photo by benuski
There's nothing wrong with getting free stuff, but often you'll have to put some time in to get whatever the freebie is. Maybe you'll be forced to wait in line, perform some sort of task, go and pick it up, or slowly earn it through some kind of reward system. John Wedding at Might Bargain Hunter suggests you make time one of the first things you consider when a freebie is dangling in front of you:
Time can only be spent once. Then it's gone... estimate how much time it will take to satisfy the requirements to get the free item, as well as how likely you are to receive the item. Then you can decide to whether to bite or not.
So when you see that awesome freebie staring you in the face, ask yourself "how long will I have to wait?" Patience is a virtue, but consider what your time is really worth to you overall. Nothing is worse than waiting to get something, only to be aggravated and filled with regret.
Six costs of free — and how to avoid having them eat your lunch [Mighty Bargain Hunter]