5 of my favorite Birthday Travel Freebies

Disclosure: Basic Travel Couple, LLC has partnered with CardRatings for our coverage of credit card products. Basic Travel Couple, LLC and CardRatings and MileValue may receive a commission from card issuers. This compensation may impact how and where links appear on this site. This site does not include all financial companies or all available financial offers. Terms apply to American Express benefits and offers. Enrollment may be required for select American Express benefits and offers. Visit americanexpress.com to learn more.

There is no better way to celebrate a birthday than while traveling. Whether it’s an exotic destination or a fun road trip, birthday travel is amazing. And since it is a Birthday Celebration, there are often some great birthday freebies that result in making the day even more special. Here are my five favorite birthday travel freebies!

1 – Hotel Birthday Freebies (Room Upgrades & Surprises)

This is one of my favorite birthday travel freebies. Over the years I have been lucky enough to receive amazing room upgrades throughout the world. The best one took place in Cairo Egypt at the Le Méridien Pyramids Hotel & Spa. Not only were we upgraded to an amazing room with a pretty good view – but the hotel surprised us with a delicious birthday cake. Later that evening, we came back to the room and found a bottle of champagne to enjoy by the pool!

Two birthday travel freebies in Cairo Egypt. A room upgrade and a delicious cake!

Be sure to let the hotel know ahead of time that you are visiting on your birthday via an email to the Concierge. I especially love doing this when traveling with someone else and surprising them. It’s even possible to reach out to the hotel ahead of time for friends and family who are traveling to set up a surprise. Lisa did this for her friend’s Hawaiian Honeymoon.

2 – Airline Birthday Freebies (Cockpit photo, upgrades, & celebration beverages)

Flying on your birthday can lead to some fantastic freebies. Airlines will often provide travelers with upgrades and complimentary beverages when flying on your birthday. Southwest airlines has been known to sing the Happy Birthday song over the PA and “crown” their special travelers. I’ve even heard that Singapore Airlines will generously provide birthday travelers with a cake if you email the customer service ahead of time.

Lisa posing with the pilots in the cockpit on a Birthday Flight

On longer flights, birthday travelers might even get upgrades to business or first class. This has not happened to me (yet) but I’ve heard from many lucky travelers who have gotten lucky. If you’re looking for a new profile pic, the pilots will sometimes even let you sneak into the cockpit for a quick photo on your birthday!

3 – Excursion Birthday Freebie (Hot Air Balloon Song & Dance)

Some lesser-known birthday travel freebies include excursions and activities. There are some companies out there that love to throw in a special birthday twist to celebrate your big day. One of my favorite memories of a secret birthday celebration took place after a Sunrise Hot Air Balloon ride in Luxor Egypt. After stepping out of the basket, the whole staff surprised Lisa with a traditional Egyptian Birthday Song & Dance. I had emailed the company ahead of time and told them it was a celebratory excursion. The surprise got even better when the company took 10% off of our final bill for Lisa’s birthday!

A surprise Egyptian birthday celebration!

If you’re into the Medieval Times, birthday guests can enter and eat for free with the purchase of a companion ticket. I had a blast at the Medieval Times in Toronto Canada. It’s a great show and the food was delicious. Be sure to join the Medieval Times Birthday Club ahead of time to get your free ticket.

4 – Birthday Dinner Freebie

Many restaurants love to throw in a special Birthday dinner freebie. Typically this involves a memorable (and sometimes embarrassing) song and dance. Simply call ahead or sneak off to the bathroom and find a server to see if the restaurant does anything special for birthdays. One of my most memorable birthday celebrations took place in Athens Greece – 164 feet above the ground. The Dinner in the Sky Athens provided an exceptional experience and made my birthday extra special.

Celebrating our 31st Birthdays 164 feet off the ground at the Dinner in the Sky in Athens Greece.

A close second would have to be this birthday treat (pictured below) on a very remote island in the Phillippines. Many islands have limited infrastructure and this special treat after dinner was such a surprise.

A special birthday treat on the island of Coron Philippines

5 – Free Food (and Ice Cream)

Finally, many restaurants will offer complimentary food and beverages on a birthday. Start the day off with a free coffee at both Dunkin Donuts and Starbucks. From there move onto IHOP for a free stack of pancakes. After breakfast, grab a Free Pastry at Panera before a nice birthday nap. Wake up and head to Subway for a free 6-inch sub for lunch. Swing by Krispy Kreme for a Free donut on the way to dinner. Hooters offers 10 free chicken wings on your birthday. If you prefer a Free burger instead, Red Robin has you covered. End the night the right way with a Free scoop of ice cream at Baskin Robbins and Cold Stone Creamery.

Basic Breakdown

When it comes to celebrating a birthday, there are many ways to make it extra special. Airlines, hotels, restaurants, and excursions all offer opportunities to sweeten the big day (literally). My fingers are crossed for a business or first-class upgrade on a long haul birthday flight. That would be the best birthday travel freebie for me and make my basic day!

Have you found a special way to celebrate a birthday while traveling?

I’d love to hear down in the comments below or over in our 7,100+ Member Basic Travel Facebook Group!

More Basic Reading

Editorial Disclaimer: Opinions, reviews, analyses & recommendations are the author’s alone, and have not been reviewed, endorsed or approved by any of these entities.

The comments section below responses are not provided or commissioned by the bank advertiser. Responses have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by the bank advertiser. It is not the bank advertiser’s responsibility to ensure all posts and/or questions are answered.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.

5 Basic Travel Strategies

Need-to-know tricks for cheap travel.

Top Credit Card Offers

Chase Freedom Flex℠

Earn a $200 Bonus after you spend $500 on purchases in your first 3 months from account opening

Citi Premier Credit Card

Earn 80,000 bonus ThankYou® Points after you spend $4,000 in purchases within the first 3 months of account opening

Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card

Earn 60,000 bonus points after you spend $4,000 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening. That's $750 when you redeem through Chase Ultimate Rewards®.

American Express® Gold Card

Earn 60,000 Membership Rewards® Points after you spend $4,000 on eligible purchases with your new Card within the first 6 months of Card Membership.

We're Dave & Lisa

An easy-going, fun-loving couple who have a passion for adventure and exploring the world! Our strategies have saved us over $100,000 in travel over the last four years, and our goal is to help you do the same.

Keep Exploring