Things in life that should always be free

The best things in life are free... if you know where to look. And I don't just mean checking out books from the library, though that is a great thing for the voracious reader on a tight budget.

Here are four things in life that I personally think should be free, some of which you may have relegated to that cluttered corner of your brain where you store your exes' phone numbers and the lyrics to "The Cheeky Song (Touch My Bum)":

1. Productivity software. How much does a legal copy of MS Word cost? Well, if you order it from Microsoft, you'll pay anywhere from £97.86 for the home/student edition of MS Office to £440.42 for Office Professional 2007. You can get the student version for £35 thanks to HUKD, and NHS professionals can also download the Microsoft Office Professional 2007 for £8.95. But for those who lack a doctor friend or two, remember that free alternatives such as the Open Office Suite are equally good, and save your documents in Word or any number of other popular formats. Same thing goes for the free Google Suite of productivity software.

2. Anti-virus software. Speaking of documents, a trojan or virus that destroys your documents is the last thing you want. While anti-virus programs such as Norton and McAfee usually cost money, there are a few freewares along the likes of AVG Antivirus, ClamWin, Spybot, and Spyware Doctor that will be better than nothing. HotUKDeals also recently mentioned a one year free Kaspersky anti virus subscription, but this is only for online Barclays bank account holders. However, other banks also provide their own free anti-virus subscriptions, such as McAfee from HSBC. You know what they say about the "best" antivirus software - it's the one you'll actually use.

3. Short-range transportation/exercise. Walking costs, what? Some shoe leather? A few calories?

4. All kinds of amazing stuff. If you haven't yet, check out the freebies section of HUKD. This weekend, you could watch 136 pipe bands compete in the European Pipe Band Championships if you happen to live near Greenock's Battery Park. Guaranteed to bring tears to your eyes (interpret that any way you see fit).

There are plenty of other things in life that should always be free, and I'm sure you have your own list. What about boxes from the off-license? What about water in restaurants? What about public toilets? Let us know in the comments below.


  • dan m.
    i like that toilets are free. except you pay 20p in railway stations
  • dan m.
    also, i want free bottle of ribena anyone have?
  • Party P.
    I do Dan, I'm in the Isle of Man, come by any time.
  • Shaun
    Huh. Anti virus software. How many times must I go and fix a friends computer because the stingy gits have installed AVG and found that AVG hasn't stopped that bit of spyware, trojan etc from installing on thier PC. Challenge: if you have AVG on your PC you tightwads, go and install the trial version of Bullguard, run a scan and then see what nasties are lurking on your hard drive. You get what you pay for.
  • Tom P.
    I'm a tightwad and use FREE avast! & Comodo, and have NEVER had a trojan or virus...except the nasty rash i got on my lovestick from dirty Mary...i doubt any anti virus could have stopped that.
  • ginge
    Open Office isn't equally as good.
  • ginge
    oh, and Dan the Man. If you had taken part in the100m at the London Grand Prix tonight you would have got a free bottle of Lucozade. It was only the still stuff, but I didn't hear Usain Bolt complaining.
  • Brian
    "Things in life that should always be free" SEX should always be free, not self-gratification, but SEX with real females.
  • Smarties
    was wondering how long it would take for someone to bring up something naughty
  • ginge
    'Posted by Brian | July 25th, 2009 at 10:25 am “Things in life that should always be free” SEX should always be free, not self-gratification, but SEX with real females.' It generally is Brian, women are just keeping the fact a secret from you tossers.
  • Stephanie
    I agree! There are soo many things in life that SHOULD be free, but it seems everything has a cost, even if its not of monetary value, it still has some sort of cost.
  • George
    I tend to favour SSuite Office’s free office suites. Their software also don’t need to run on Java or .NET, like so many open source office suites, so it makes the software very small and efficient.
  • Vince W.
    Great tip George/Ginge. Never heard of ssuitesoft but will check it out. Tom, does Comodo and Avast complement each other well? Never used Comodo. Stephanie that's actually an interesting distinction between monetary value vs real/perceived value. After all, what we consider as 'deals' are often what we believe the monetary value to be a bargain from its real/perceived value.
  • Dave S.
    Shaun, you dopey twat, don't you see that Bullguard just creates these tojans and viruses to make it look like it's found loads more things than 'truthful' AVG, so you think, fuck me, this trial versions loads better than free AVG, I'd best bloody well go ahead and buy the full version?! You dumb fucking cunt!
  • spyware b.
    Spyware can be a real pain and in some cases very damaging. I find that I need to have a spyware blocker otherwise my computer just gets inundated with spyware. The top selling ones such as spyware doctor do really work and are worth the cost. Some of the 'free' spyware blockers are actually spyware in disguise!

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