Happy Birthday! Well, maybe it’s not your birthday just yet, but I thought that when the time rolls around, I would get you prepared. 

A common rule of thumb for many businesses is that when it is your yearly celebration of you, customers are offered a free gift. And, luckily enough, a lot of businesses in Fairfield and nearby are waiting for you to pick up something lovely for your special day. Here is a lengthy list you can refer back to of what places offer free items, what they are and what you have to do to secure the bag! 

Crumbl Cookies – A new Crumbl location opened up on 2261 Black Rock Turnpike not too long ago, and per each of their locations, you are guaranteed one free cookie of the week on your birthday. For those who are not familiar with this bakery, every Sunday the stores are closed to prepare their new recipes for the upcoming week. Then, four to five new flavors are presented for six days only, with no guarantee to return. To accept your birthday cookie, just sign up on the app and make a profile with the correct date!

Panera Bread – Panera offers each customer their annual “birthday freebie” once signing up for their rewards program which can be selected from their pastry display. Some items may include a croissant, cinnamon roll, bear claw, brownies, chocolate chip cookies, frosted cookies, lemon cookies and more. My recommendation, however, will always be the kitchen sink cookie since it has semi-sweet chocolate chips, caramel, pretzels and flakey salt.

Jersey Mike’s – Also on Black Rock Turnpike, Jersey Mike’s gives customers one free regular-sized sub upon signing up for their rewards program at least a day before. 

McDonald’s – Salty, and only good when they’re warm, you can get one free medium fry from McDonald’s on your special day. Worth it? More than likely no. But if you’re headed there anyway, you might as well sign up through the app at least a day before and use the reward!

Chipotle – I know this is a fan-favorite for a lot of people, so this tip will definitely come in handy for most of the Stag population. Any time within your birthday month (yes, they allow you to claim it once anytime within the month of your birthday), if you feel like having a burrito or bowl, you are given free chips and queso or guacamole. The catch for this “free treat” is that you must purchase something with a $5 minimum in order to receive the side snack; per usual, just make sure to join their rewards system before going to the register. 

Dunkin’ – If you roll into the drive-thru or walk in the lobby, you can receive a free drink of any size as long as you sign up for the rewards program.

Starbucks – If you’re more of a Starbucks fan, you’re in luck. As part of the rewards member program, you are offered the choice of one complimentary handcrafted beverage, or one complimentary food item or one complimentary ready-to-drink bottled beverage. Disclaimer, the university-affiliated locations do not participate in the rewards program, so if you wish to claim your complimentary item, you can only pick it up at 1740 Boston Post Road.

Dairy Queen – More dessert! After signing up to join their rewards program, you can pick up your free blizzard at any time during your birthday.

The moral of the story is, all you have to do is spend a few minutes signing up for a rewards program to get a complimentary gift. To be on the safe side, I would suggest making an account at least 24 hours before you go birthday-treat hunting so that your date registers in time for pickup. Go out there and make the best of your birthday!

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