25 Discounts and Freebies for the Class of 2025

This article is one of six in our “freshman care package” series.

During my freshman year, one of the best things that I learned about was the number of freebies and discounts available to college students.  College costs can add up quickly, so it’s important to know how to save a few bucks to make the most of your time in Williamsburg.  Here are some of the 25 best deals that can help save you some extra cash during your time at college:

  1. All students at the College of William and Mary are able to get a free four-year pass to Colonial Williamsburg.  This pass will give you access to many of the beautiful gardens in CW, along with many tours and discounts in CW-owned shops. 
  2. Love to keep up with the news? You can get free digital access to the Wall Street Journal and the New York Times as a student!
  3. Swem Library offers free access to Ancestry.com, so you can research that history paper you have to do, or just research your own family members.
  4. Kanopy is a streaming service that you get a free subscription to as a college student!  They have a wide variety of films available to watch, including the catalog of A24 films, numerous documentaries, and many other popular movies. 
  5. College students are able to get the student Spotify plan, which includes Spotify Premium, Hulu and Showtime for only $4.99 a month.
  6. Most stores in the Merchant’s Square area of CW offer discounts to students at the College. Next time you make a purchase, make sure to ask if they offer a student discount!
  7. Coursicle is one of the most important websites when it comes to course selection and registration, and it’s easy to get a free premium membership. If you refer three friends to make an account, you will automatically get access to the premium membership which allows you to track the enrollment for multiple classes and get notified when a spot opens up in a class you want to take. 
  8. Free t-shirts are prized items for college students.  Many organizations and events offer free shirts throughout the school year, so keep your eyes peeled for ones that are available!
  9. Microsoft Office is a useful piece of software to have in college, and you can download it for free on your computer through the College’s website.
  10. The Williamsburg Area Transportation Authority (or WATA for short) offers free bus transportation around Williamsburg. Although taking the bus somewhere can be a bit time consuming, the bus provides reliable and free transportation if you don’t have access to a car. Just show your student ID at the door for free rides!
  11. Once during the fall semester, Busch Gardens has a day where students from the College can get discounted tickets.  Normal tickets can be a bit on the pricey side, but this discount provides a great way to experience one of the best things to do in Williamsburg.
  12. College students get their first six months of an Amazon Prime membership for free!
  13. Textbooks can be pricey, which is why e-book versions are ideal for thrifty students. If you do end up needing a physical copy of a textbook, websites like Chegg and Amazon allow you to rent them for a fraction of the cost compared to bookstore prices. Also check out Facebook groups that might be selling the book you need!
  14. Many chain restaurants offer a free drink or student discount when you show your college ID. It’s always worth asking!
  15. Full-time students at the College have access to the Bee McLeod Recreation Center’s Gym, so you can make some gains in college. 
  16. There are a variety of fitness and wellness classes you can attend for free that include cycling, pilates, yoga and much more!
  17. During the warmer months of the school year, Campus Recreation offers free kayaking on Lake Matoaka. I kayaked numerous times during my freshman year, and I’d highly recommend doing this at least once to explore the lake!
  18. In addition to physical books, you can also offer thousands of free ebooks that you can access through Swem’s website
  19. The Writing Resources Center, which is located on the first floor of Swem, offers free services to help students improve their writing and communication skills.  
  20. Every spring, the W&M Global Film Festival takes place on campus, which gives students the opportunity to see many popular and critically acclaimed films for free. 
  21. If you have a punch card from one of the three Aromas locations (CW Aromas, Swemromas, or the Daily Grind), you can get a free drink after every 10 that you purchase. I recommend using your free drink to splurge on an expensive latte.
  22. In the spring, WCWM, the College’s radio station, has a free music festival for students. In the past, they’ve brought in acts like Car Seat Headrest, Lucy Dacus and Mitski!
  23. College students get free admission to all on-campus sporting events.
  24. Full-time students have access to free counseling through the Counseling Center.  Sometimes it can be very difficult to get enrolled in counseling or therapy, but their resources are extremely valuable to those who are able to access them. 
  25. The best way to get random free things is to attend campus events from organizations like AMP or Student Assembly. Through social media and TribeLink, it’s easy to find lots of events around campus that give out free items, such as water bottles, sewing kits, teddy bears, puzzles, painting sets and so much more!
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Chief Staff Writer Callie Booth is a sophomore originally from Rustburg, Virginia majoring in History and Government. When not writing for the Flat Hat, she conducts research through the Global Research Institute, serves as a Resident Assistant, and is a member of Random Acts of Kindness Club. You can find her exploring the various coffee shops around Williamsburg.

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