6 Services You May Be Paying for That You Can Likely Get for Free


Even if you’re the type who scours bank statements for duplicate charges and other errors, you could still be overpaying for everything from entertainment to insurance. That’s because some common memberships come with easily-overlooked perks you may be paying for separately.

Here’s how to change that and hold onto more of your money.

Newspapers, Magazines, Movies and Classes

Libraries aren’t just for borrowing hardbacks and watching kids’ puppet shows. Many also offer free access to all kinds of entertainment. For example, Los Angeles Public Library members can stream movies from an extensive independent film library. Or, if you’re in NYC, you can download millions of songs from a digital music catalog—possibly rendering your $10/month Apple Music subscription redundant—or sharpen a new skill through an online course.

Amazon Prime members also have access to Prime Video—unlimited streaming of movies and TV episodes—and Prime Music, offering unlimited access to hundreds of playlists and more than a million songs.

Cloud Storage

A lot of people don’t realize that Amazon Prime members also get unlimited photo storage, plus 5 gigs of cloud storage on Amazon Drive. Gmail users can also snag 15 gigs of free cloud storage on Google Drive—saving you the paid iCloud subscription.

Museum Admission

If you’re a patron of the arts, you may be able to visit museums without purchasing a ticket. Bank of America cardholders, for example, can score free admission to museums across the U.S. during the first weekend of the month. And some libraries also have programs—like Seattle’s Museum Pass and Chicago’s Kids Museum Passport—granting free or discounted entry, as do certain employers. Ask your HR department if yours does.

Extended Warranties

Got a major credit card in your wallet? Then you might be able to ditch pricey extended warranties on appliances, electronics and other major purchases. According to a WalletHub analysis, 28 percent of credit cards will extend even a five-year manufacturer’s warranty by one to two years. Terms vary, so read the fine print, paying special attention to what’s excluded.

Travel and Rental Car Insurance

Credit cards may also offer backup in the event your vacation plans are interrupted. For example, the Chase Sapphire Preferred will cover up to $10,000 per trip if you’re too sick to travel or severe weather threatens your plans—meaning you can skip the comprehensive travel insurance package, which can tack on an extra 5 to 7 percent to your total trip cost. And the Capital One Platinum card offers 24-hour roadside assistance, potentially saving you the AAA membership fee.

Other cards, like the Ritz-Carlton Reward Credit Card, offer similar coverage to car rental insurance and cover you in the case of a collision, auto theft or towing, shaving off anywhere from $10 to $30 a day. Check your card’s benefits to see what’s covered.

acorns+cnbcacorns cnbc

Join Acorns


About Us

Learn More

Follow Us

All investments involve risk, including loss of principal. The contents presented herein are provided for general investment education and informational purposes only and do not constitute an offer to sell or a solicitation to buy any specific securities or engage in any particular investment strategy. Acorns is not engaged in rendering any tax, legal, or accounting advice. Please consult with a qualified professional for this type of advice.

Any references to past performance, regarding financial markets or otherwise, do not indicate or guarantee future results. Forward-looking statements, including without limitations investment outcomes and projections, are hypothetical and educational in nature. The results of any hypothetical projections can and may differ from actual investment results had the strategies been deployed in actual securities accounts. It is not possible to invest directly in an index.

Advisory services offered by Acorns Advisers, LLC (“Acorns Advisers”), an investment adviser registered with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (“SEC”). Brokerage and custody services are provided to clients of Acorns Advisers by Acorns Securities, LLC (“Acorns Securities”), a broker-dealer registered with the SEC and a member of the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority, Inc. (“FINRA”) and the Securities Investor Protection Corporation (“SIPC”). Acorns Pay, LLC (“Acorns Pay”) manages Acorns’s demand deposit and other banking products in partnership with Lincoln Savings Bank, a bank chartered under the laws of Iowa and member FDIC. Acorns Advisers, Acorns Securities, and Acorns Pay are subsidiaries of Acorns Grow Incorporated (collectively “Acorns”). “Acorns,” the Acorns logo and “Invest the Change” are registered trademarks of Acorns Grow Incorporated. Copyright © 2021 Acorns and/or its affiliates.

NBCUniversal and Comcast Ventures are investors in Acorns Grow Incorporated.