Although college life is highlighted by pulling all-nighters and dining hall food, it’s always nice to get off campus occasionally. Of course, if your birthday lands during the school year then you have that extra reason to treat yourself. What better way to treat yourself than getting free food on your birthday? Whether you have a sweet tooth for a PSL or a craving for a Tex-Mex burrito this birthday, there are places only a short Uber or shuttle ride away from Wake Forest University's campus. 

1. Starbucks

coffee, milk, tea, beer
Sarah Yanofsky

Although it is truly tragic that the on-campus Starbucks doesn’t give rewards points for those few (aka 8) times you got a coffee last week, they do give their Rewards Club members a free drink or food item on their birthday. All you need to do is sign up at least a week before your birthday, and you can have that PSL without forking out half of your food dollars.

2. Moe's Southwest Grill

For those of us who like the Moe’s in Benson, what could be better than entire burrito for free? That’s right, you can get any size burrito for FREE on your birthday at your local Moe’s. So if you are not really feeling that dessert craving this year, then head on over for lunch (or post-midterm treat) and bring a friend or two. All you have to do is download the Moe’s app and sign up for their Moe’s Rewards.  

3. Waffle House

Let’s be honest: Waffle House always seems to taste the best at 1am on a weekend. Even if your birthday doesn’t land on a weekend, there’s no shame in going in broad daylight to score some free food on your birthday. Adding onto the fact that Waffle House is a great bang for a college student’s buck, you can get a free classic waffle just for being a year older.


For those of you who land on the WaHo side of the epic Waffle House-IHOP debate, they have more sweet treats to splurge on this year’s birthday. If a waffle isn’t your style, IHOP give birthday customers an entire stack of their Rooty Tooty Fresh 'N Fruity Pancakes for free. The best part (beside getting free food) is that you can redeem your free stack within a week before or after your birthday. So, if breakfast is calling your name, feel free to dash over to IHOP the next weekend. To score this delicious freebie, just sign up for IHOP’s mailing list.

5. Bojangles'

If you haven’t caught the Bojangles’ craze since coming to Wake, going for free food is always a good reason to start. Starting a week before and ending a whole month after, you can get a free Bo-Berry Biscuit as another way to treat yourself for being born. If you don’t know what a Bo-Berry biscuit is, then no worries. The dessert (or snack, let’s be honest) is a sweeter, icing-covered version of a classic Bojangles’ biscuit. To get your free biscuit, just sign up for Bojangles’ mailing list.

Now, you know all of the mailing lists and rewards accounts that you need to sign up for to make your birthday week full of free goodies. Luckily, Winston-Salem has so many options, so whether you like sweet or savory, you're guaranteed to have an amazing birthday.