I recently took a road trip to Colorado Springs, which wasn’t even my idea, but it ended up being a solo road trip, so I left my golf clubs in the trunk and concentrated on getting vegan food freebies with apps, which isn’t always that easy. The digital age transferred tasks to the consumer and in exchange there are some freebies to offset inflation.
For the road I brought a lot of snacks in mini-coolers. Vegan no cow. bars were freebies via Rebaid and then offered again for free via Facebook (in exchange for posting a review.)
I stopped over in Raton, NM and I didn’t bother trying any restaurant, since I brought some vegan frozen meals in a Coors Light backpack cooler that I won. That way I had more pool time.
In Pueblo, CO I finally for the first time tried The Impossible WhopperTM. There had been an online game that guaranteed Royal Crowns prizes (you just had to play the game and you automatically won.) The Impossible WhopperTM was 1000 Royal Crowns. But the problem was that I didn’t see anywhere in the app to put “hold the mayo” (maybe the app needs updating or something.) The app also said that I could only pick up the order in the drive-thru.
So I went in and told the worker at the counter about the problem and he said he could tell the cooks “hold the mayo” right there and I could pick it up right there. He asked if I got The Impossible WhopperTM for free and I said yeah, and he was like, “Damn, our app is legit!” Okay, but it could use improvement. Also, I brought in my own drink because even though I had a lot of “free drink” credits, I didn’t feel like doing a separate order. (The app has a rule against using more than one promo deal per order, which means that people will just do separate orders if they want to get multiple freebies.)
I had read on Happy Cow that there is a restaurant in Colorado Springs called Santana’s Vegan Grill so I knew I should go there. I thought I might have to pay out of pocket, but then I remembered I had Uber Eats credit from gift cards that I won (you enter them in the app so they are stored.) I couldn’t actually remember if I had ever used Uber Eats before, but it turns out that I hadn’t.
First I tried doing the order on the web, but it wouldn’t let me use my gift card credit! Then I decided to try the app, and yes, my credit was there! I had already looked for promo codes not realizing that I had a promo code already in the app (I don’t remember if I had entered it at some point or it’s just automatically there for first time customers.) So, the promo code was for $20 off $25 orders so I had to order more food. (That’s okay; I brought some containers and bags to save food.) Okay, so I could finally place the order, right? Nope! Now the Uber Eats app wanted a scan of my driver’s license. So, finally I went through all that process and I could go get the free food and that shouldn’t be difficult, right? Wrong.
I went in and told the worker at the counter I was picking up my Uber Eats order and told her my name. But she said she couldn’t find it so I had to show her the actual app. She was like, “I thought you said the order was for Brandon.”
“No, that chick who came in after me shouted out that she was picking up an order for Brandon.” (Yes, a long haired blonde chick decided to butt in for some reason.)
Okay, so if you order food from a restaurant through an app for “pick up” does that mean you have to take it away? Not me! I’ll eat there anyway because I just ordered for “pick up” so I could get it for free. So, the counter worker gave me my smoothie and donut (in a box) right away and the rest I had to wait for. (Brandon chick got her order first.) So, remember I had to order over $25 worth of food to get a really good deal (I hardly needed to spend my Uber Eats gift card credit), so the workers may have thought I was bulimic (wasteful.) Oh well. I’m not! I saved a lot of it for later. The vegan chili cheese fries is big enough for three people to share, so I saved two thirds of it, the vegan bacon cheese sandwich, part of my vegan burger, and the donut for later. (My Uber Eats referal code is eats-jillb8595ui.) (Then I wondered if I dropped the ball on getting cash back. But I didn’t see Uber Eats in the TopCashBack app, just on the web page, so who knows.)
But I didn’t get enough beverage because I ordered a smoothie. I thought about making another order through the app, but I could see there was a Dunkin Donuts next door, which I also had app credit for (from prizes), so I figured I’ll save the rest of my Uber Eats credit for another restaurant. So, I got a refreshing beverage for free from Dunkin Donuts. Then I saw next door was a Circle K and realized I had a digital coupon for an Aha sparkling water (from their mobile game), so I checked for it, and they didn’t have it. Instead of selecting the option to change the prize to a fountain drink, I decided to use a digital coupon for gas. I pre-paid (as per instructions) with coins (which stores need because of the national coin shortage) and the cashier was like, “I’ll have to open the rolls to check these coins.” But she didn’t bother. However, I only ended up getting 41 cents of free gas, so that was not the biggest discount on the planet.
Then I decided to pick up some freebies from Sprouts, which shouldn’t have been a problem since I didn’t have a problem last September in Las Vegas. But due to cashier arrogance, it was a problem.
As you probably already know, each first of the month at 10am mountain time the Sprouts app offers digital freebie coupons. (Expect the app to jam up and give errors when the freebie digital coupons are supposed to go live.) I actually only had one of those digital coupons for the Free Kettle Potato Chips, 8.5oz. (The habañero lime is too hot. Next time I’d get the salt & vinegar.) But I also had a freebie coupon for Maxine’s Heavenly cookies (given out via an offer on Facebook.) And I picked up a Munk Pack Nut & Seed bar (free after Ibotta cashback of $2.29.) My Sprouts account is linked to Ibotta so the cashback was supposed to be automatic, but it wasn’t so I used the link in the app that says “submit receipt instead.” (My Ibotta referral code is BOUUTSV.)
But checking out was a problem because the cashier refused to scan the bar code because I had it printed out and forgot the phone with the app in my car. She said I could type out my phone number instead, which I did, but the freebie digital coupon didn’t apply. She suggested that I just hadn’t loaded the digital coupon properly and I was like no, you have to scan the damn barcode. (A Sprouts I used to go to had the scanner facing the customer so she could scan the barcode herself.) But since she still refused to scan the printed barcode even though the Sprouts app isn’t the same as the Ticketmaster app, I had to get the phone out of my car. So going back out into the parking lot I again saw the pregnant lady playing violin and I’m thinking, “Wow, I just saw Colorado Springs’ discards hanging out at a park next to a shelter, but I’m sure this lady’s kid will be just fine.”
So back in the store the cashier scanned the barcode on the phone so I could finally finish the damn transaction. WOW.
Then because I had so much leftovers I didn’t need to stop on the drive back to use my Taco Bell boost, so I did that later in Clovis, NM. Cash App has a lot of giveaways for cash, stock, bitcoin, and boosts, but this Taco Bell boost was just a limited offer freebie and you didn’t have to win it. So now I have to wonder why Taco Bell has a “Fiesta Veggie Burrito” with so many animal products in it that even if you order it “fresco” it will still have a chipotle sauce with egg in it. Does the corporate office understand the meaning of the word “veggie”? But much better is the bean burrito, fresco, guacamole added. So, I just had to purchase items using my Cash App debit card (with money that I won) and then I received this notice: “You spent $0.08 at Taco Bell. Your 99% Boost was instantly applied.” (My Cash App referral code is RHGLCPV.)