It’s November! Not only does that mean that Christmas is around the corner, but it also means my birthday – the first one since my marriage ended and hopefully the only one during a national Lockdown.
Secretly, I had been dreading the day as I wouldn’t be able to see family or friends either in Canada or here in the UK and I expected to feel very lonely.
But as if by magic, it turned out to be the best birthday I could have hoped for.
Audrey and I started the day with breakfast in bed with Hummingbird Bakery cupcakes and ended it with dinner and a HB rainbow cake with my lovely mother-in-law (just because her son and I are getting a divorce, doesn’t mean that she and I are).
In the hours in between, my day was filled with so many lovely surprises: delightful DPD deliveries, beautiful bouquets of flowers, yummy chocolates, perfect-for-me pressies, a home-cooked takeaway for tomorrow and so many messages, phone calls, FaceTimes and Zooms.
My heart is full and tonight I am going to bed feeling loved, very lucky and absolutely optimistic.
I have a feeling 41 is going to be great – although, after last year it’s not exactly going be a tough act to follow.
So, I wanted to share a bit of the love so I’ve scoured my inbox and pulled together a list of the best offers and freebies out there that you can bag around your birthday.
Admittedly, I won’t be able to make the most of many of these deals due to Lockdown 2.0, but that doesn’t mean that you can’t – or at least here’s hoping this doesn’t last as long as last time.
Bear in mind that most birthday offers require you to sign up a month before the actual day and can’t be used in conjunction with any other promotions such as cash back websites, supermarket loyalty codes or Tastecard, for instance.
Also, due to strict licensing laws, free alcohol is not available in Scotland, but alternatives may be offered.
Here is where to start:
Sign up to the loyalty programme at Liberty of London to earn points on your spend at the British retail institution.
Add your birthday to your account and at the start of your birth month, you will be sent a voucher – the value of which will be determined by how much you have bought previously.
As I don’t shop there as much as I would like, I had a £5 gift card sent out – which isn’t bad going if you ask me.
Transform your nails with a file and paint by blow LTD worth £15, a facial by Elizabeth Arden on your birthday (regular price of £15) or a KVD Vegan Beauty makeover for two if you sign up to the free Debenhams Beauty Club.
Simply bring your card to the relevant beauty counter and show your proof of your date of birth within two weeks of your birthday.
As a member of Space NK’s free loyalty scheme, N.dulge, you can earn double points and get your hands on a free gift which you can pick up in store or add to an online order by uusing a promotional code in the email.
Join Aveda’s Reward Programme and get a free gift worth £14 every year on your birthday. You’ll also collect points every time you make purchase for more freebies.
If you sign up to the The Body Shop’s free ‘Love Your Body’ loyalty card, on your birthday you can get a free £5 to spend in store or online with no minimum spend.
You can either pop into your local store or go online with your Love Your Body Club birthday voucher, which you will receive in an email on your birthday. It’s valid for up to one month after your birthday but you have to have made at least one purchase using the card previously to be eligible.
If you sign up to the free Superdrug ‘Health & Beautycard’ loyalty card, on your birthday you’ll get triple points on purchases with no minimum spend. It’s valid for 14 days after your birthday.
For Elemis fans, if you sign up for the newsletter, as a birthday treat you’ll get an email with a code for £10 off a £25 spend online, valid for three months.
You can’t use it in stores, on gift vouchers, travel sizes, collections or sale items.
Sign up to the free H&M club via its app or website, you can get 25% off one item online or in store on your birthday via a unique code sent by email, which is valid for two weeks after your birthday.
If you download the Gap+ loyalty app, you’ll get 50% off on your birthday, plus 5% off every day.
If you sign up to the free BooHoo newsletter, you can get 25% off online on your birthday via a unique code sent by email, which is valid for seven days after your birthday.
Get 15% off on your birthday when you sign up to the Anthropologie loyalty programme, Anthroperks. Plus you’ll get the inside scoop on new arrivals and sale dates before they start as well as free delivery on orders over £75.
For 15% off your next purchase, simply sign up for the newsletter and enter your unique code online or take this voucher into one of their stores.
If you are a Sparks cardholder at M&S, you may get special treat sent to you in the weeks leading up to your birthday – last year, it was a coupon for 20% off on clothing, beauty and homeware.
But, every customer isn’t guaranteed a birthday offer to every customer, however, the more you shop with Sparks, the more likely you are to be in with the chance of a free treat, or having your shopping paid for by the retailer.
If you are after a birthday treat from AllSaints, sign up for their newsletter to get 15% off your next online or in-store purchase.
Just watch out for the discount code to land in your inbox.
Join the ASOS newsletter and you’ll get 15% on selected full price items on your birthday. Bear in mind that it is only good for one order per customer up to a maximum of £500. Excludes delivery charges, gift vouchers and subscription to ASOS Premier.
If you buy online at Figleaves, you will qualify for 15% off one order as a birthday treat. Bear in mind that the deal is only valid on full-priced items only and excludes the following brands: Elle Macpherson Body, Empreinte, Simone Perele, Wacoal, B.tempt’d, UGG, L’Agent, Marie Jo, Prima Donna.
Sign up for Topshop’s newsletter and a unique code will be sent out right before your birthday for 20% off online purchases, valid for 30 days and with no minimum spend.
Put your name down for the New Look newsletter and save 20% on your birthday. The unique code is sent via email, which is good for a fortnight.
If you shop at Oasis, it is worth signing up for their newsletter so you can get 20% off online or in-store on your birthday via a unique code sent by email, which is valid for 30 days after your birthday.
If you are looking for a little something special for your birthday, Lovehoney Unlimited customers will be sent a discount code of 30% off a purchase over £40 to mark your special day.
Sign up to My Pizza Express and get a free bottle of Prosecco, bottle of wine, four bottles of beer or six soft drinks when you buy two main meals. The voucher will be sent you via email and is good for four weeks.
More free birthday fizz? Yes, please! Sign up to Cafe Rouge’s email newsletter to become a member of their birthday club, which gets you a free bottle of fizz on your special day.
If pub grub is more your taste, sign up for the Vintage Inns mailing list for a complimentary bottle of Champagne two weeks before your birthday.
Celebrate your special day the right way: with friends, family – and a bottle of bubbly. Get your unique code and enjoy a complimentary bottle of Prosecco, or a bottle of red or white house wine with a minimum spend of £25 on food. What’s more, you’ll also get sent the same offer on your “half birthday”
Sign up for the newsletter at Strada to get a free bottle of prosecco when you dine in and spend over £30 around your birthday.
Join TGI’s celebrations club to get birthday treats for you and up to five friends; choose from cocktails, desserts or smoothies. Plus, like Prezzo, they’ll also send you the same treat on your “half birthday”.
As an early birthday present from The Fence will offer you 25% off your total bill if you choose to celebrate at a Fuller’s pub this year.
That’s up to a decent £50 off a £200 spend when you bring your friends and family to celebrate. Just sign up for their newsletter and show the code from your email when you order.
If you fancy a free meal at Beefeater, sign up for their Reward Club. To qualify, you must buy at least one other main meal the main menu. What’s more, you can enter other special dates to receive additional offers.
Frankie and Benny’s has a birthday club which entitles adults get a free main meal and you get sent a £10 voucher when you sign up. Click on the link above to join.
At this American restaurant, you can get a free meal on your birthday so long as you sign up for their newsletter.
Please note birthday vouchers are distributed at the beginning of each month, if you sign up during the month of your birthday you won’t receive your voucher until the following year.
What’s more, when you sign up for the newsletter, you will receive a voucher for two free cocktails for you and a friend.
Sign up to the Las Iguanas newsletter to get a free meal (norm £9ish-£18ish) for your birthday when you buy at least one other main. You’ll be emailed a voucher to show in the restaurant.
Ribeye on the bone is excluded from this offer, and you can’t use it with any other discount, or for delivery, or on Valentine’s Day.
If you sign up to the newsletter at Yo! Sushi, the restaurant will send you a discount code for 30%. It’s valid for one month after you receive the email with the code.
Take-away and drinks aren’t included in the deal, and you can only use it for up to 10 plates per person for a maximum party size of four.
It’s valid at all Yo! Sushi restaurants, apart from Boxpark Croydon.
To get you into the birthday spirit, Ask Italian will give you £20 off your bill when you spend a minimum of £50. To redeem your birthday treat, simply show your server the unique code at the top of this email.
Head to your local Zizzi and you’ll receive a free main course for free. And to keep the rest of your party happy the restaurant will also throw in a free bottle of Prosecco when there are four or more of you.