Scammers From Around The World Share The Biggest Loopholes They Ever Took Advantage Of

Scammers From Around The World Share The Biggest Loopholes They Ever Took Advantage Of

Any business checks and double checks that they've covered all their tracks when it comes to organizing discounts and promotions, but they're often left vulnerable to loopholes.

Some of these openings involve some extra food or a discount on clothing. When it comes to shopping, some people are complete experts at finding loopholes. They'll search all of the rules and regulations to discover some minor error that translates into big savings. The only thing store employees can do is shake their heads and agree to the sale.

But loopholes aren't just in fine print — they're everywhere. They could be a simple workplace technicality or even a blind spot in the school rules. Being able to get one past your teacher is something that sticks with you for life.

These people managed to take advantage of loopholes with some outrageous results.


45. I Got Next!

A little community center/arcade near where I used to live as a kid had an air hockey table in the back room. Somebody figured out that if you jimmied the coin slot in just the right way, you could get an extra three to four games out of one quarter until the thing was fully pressed in and you'd have to put in a new one. None of us had much money, so this was a lifesaver. The employees didn't really care because what money we did have was typically spent at the snack bar, so they made money off us anyway.

I kind of miss that place. They always had fresh watermelon for free for kids who had absolutely no money so nobody would feel left out.


44. Big Appetite For Big Macs

The McDonald's app during this past summer would have coupons for a ton of free or one-dollar items that would refresh every day. Since they introduced mobile ordering, I would do the $1 Big Mac coupon on one order, then on a separate order do the free medium fries with any purchase, then buy a soda with it. I could get a big mac meal for $2, and it would refresh every day.


43. Skiing Down The Loophole

I used to rent skis and boots from a shop in Geneva when I lived there, as it was cheaper than renting in the resort. One weekend, I rented a pair and “forgot” to take them back (couldn’t be bothered). Since I figured that I was already going to get shafted anyway, I just carried on using them for the rest of the season. The late return fee was only $20.00, so I paid about $80 for the entire season.

I did this every year until I left and always had new skis and boots. But I never told a soul in case they all chimed in and gave the game away.


42. Please Don't Stop The Music

When using the free version of YouTube music, you can’t listen to music when you are out of the app. I wanted to work on some revising while listening to the music. So by having the questions open in another app, you can double-click the home button to see the questions while the music continues to play. This means you don’t have to pause and play over and over.



41. For The Gamers

Last Black Friday, GameStop had two promotions that I used together to get free games and money. First, they were offering a free used Xbox 360 with a mail-in rebate. Second, they were offering to buy any two used products and get one free. So I bought two Xbox 360s and got Star Wars Battlefront 2 for free. Then got two more and got COD. Both games had only been out for a few weeks and cost $50 used. Got my rebates a few weeks later and sold the systems for a few extra bucks.


40. Better Late Than Never

Last year at my school, if you got detention and you showed up late, it would be rescheduled for another day. The thing is, you were never punished for showing up late, so you could just keep showing up five minutes late every Tuesday and Thursday (those were when detentions were) and have it rescheduled. I ended the school year with about seven detentions but never went to one.


39. Can't Beat A Cup of Joe

Second Cup in Canada had a promo for their new mobile app back in 2016 where you got a free drink when you signed up for an account. It only worked once after being installed on a phone. They were still dumb because a) They didn’t verify the email and b) They’re a café so they offer free wifi. My friends and I would connect to their wifi, download the app, enter a random string for an email, and get a free $6 specialty coffee every day, then just delete the app to be ready for next time. It was a chill summer.

6217395247_7daf850379_b-1548383350950.jpgCalgary Reviews/Flickr

38. Raking Up The Points

In the 90s, I worked one summer at a recycling station. This was when Pepsi had Pepsi points. Whenever people recycled two-liter Pepsi bottles, we tossed them to the side, and when we had no customers, we took a razor blade and cut the Pepsi points off the two-liter bottles. That summer I got a leather jacket, several pairs of Tevas, some pool towels... all courtesy of Pepsi. That jacket smelled really bad though, I don't know how they dyed it.

14244039766_4df3ccee96_b-1548383525201.jpgMike Mozart/Flickr

37. The Invisible Coupon

When I go shopping at a department store, I always take a few seconds to pretend to dig through my purse/wallet looking for something before handing over payment at the checkout. After the cashier takes notice, I'll say something along the lines of, "I received a coupon in the mail and could have sworn I brought it with me but I can't find it."

Every time I've done this, the cashier hits a few buttons on the cash register and I end up getting like 15-20% off my purchase. Apparently, you don't need to actually present the coupon to receive the discount. Side note: I'm not on any kind of mailing list for any department store.


36. Fill 'Er Up!

When I was in college in DC, I worked at a retail store slightly off campus. My college had a shuttle that brought me close, but it was faster to take a Car2Go.

For several months I exploited Car2Go's Free Minutes policy. They relied primarily on their users to refill their cars. Each car was assigned a credit card that was stored in the dashboard. If the user was using a car with less than 25% fuel, they could refill it at a gas station using the supplied credit card and get 10 minutes credit on their next trip.

My place of work happened to be by a gas station. Since I lived in a collegiate part of DC, there were a lot of cars available near me.

So I started farming free minutes by renting cars below 25% and driving to the gas station by work (four minutes), filling up the tank on their dime (three minutes) and parking immediately. The time I rented for those trips was consistently eight to nine minutes.

It was a slow grind, but ended up giving me free minutes for two semesters before they stopped doing that.



35. One With The Crowd

Free concerts for two years back in the early 90s. When all the concert venues and arenas were switched to non-smoking buildings, they did not have a fixed solution for the smokers. So in our city—Winnipeg, Manitoba—they just put temp construction fencing on random side doors and the smokers would gather on the side of the arena and smoke. The loophole was that this area was never closely guarded. So my buddy Clint and I would pop the top hinge off the fence, open up the gate enough to slide into the smoking area and then close up the fence and enter the arena with the smokers. This lasted for at least two years before they got dedicated outdoor smoking areas but in that span, we attended every concert that we could for totally free.


34. Pull The Plug

So in the UK, we have to pay for a TV Licence in order to watch BBC Iplayer, and I read through all the rules when I went to university because I wanted to be able to watch stuff on it but didn’t want to pay. Well, the rule is you’re allowed to watch it on your laptop or phone if you live at an address that pays, as long as it isn’t plugged in at a property that doesn’t pay.

As a student, you have two addresses (parents and uni), and if you were in your student flat and didn’t plug your laptop into the mains you’d avoid a £1000 fine for watching it, assuming your parents paid.


33. Play "Freebird"!

Guitar Hero had an online returns form that you could fill in if any of your hardware was broken or damaged. I had only just gotten into playing the game via the Xbox demo but only had a standard controller. On some online forum, I caught wind that they (Guitar Hero peeps) had no verification system in place to check whether the person filing the report had ever purchased said hardware. If I remember correctly, there was a box to enter your customer order number but you could enter anything you liked. It wasn't verified by anyone. I received a Guitar Hero guitar in the post free of charge within a week. I felt kinda bad, but I did reach the expert level and it's probably the greatest and most used gift I've ever received!


32. Money Back Guaranteed

In early 2002, when EBGames (Canadian equivalent of GameStop) was selling computer hardware, I bought a video card there. Lo and behold, it was dead when I got it. I asked for a refund because they didn't have any left and couldn't order a replacement. Their policy is every refund of more than $200 is a check sent from head office, which takes three to four months to process. That's ridiculously idiotic in my opinion, but anyway, rules are rules.

I asked the clerk to swap my $250 dead card with a much cheaper $125 one. The clerk does the return, bills the new card, and refunds me the difference (on my debit card, because it's under $200).

Then I asked for a refund on the $125 card. After arguing with the manager for a few minutes, I point to the policy poster on the register that states refunds less than or equal to $200 are in the original payment method, refunds over $200 are by check. Then I show the manager my $125 receipt, that clearly stated I paid with a debit card, and I got my refund.

I happened to do that to a few other stores with similar policies back in the day.


31. Take A Free Ride

I used to commute to college about an hour drive's away using the commuter rail. $23 round trip. But one day, I walked into what I thought was the quiet car, but instead, it promptly filled with dozens and dozens of high schoolers. After a day or two, I learned that the conductors never walked up and down the "quiet car" with the highschoolers—the kids weren't paying. Since I still look a bit young and was only a year or two from high school myself, and was carrying a backpack, wearing jeans, etc. I was never, ever questioned for sitting in the quiet car.

Basically, every morning I could skip out on fare by sitting with the highschoolers. The ride back still cost me since my train home was too late in the day for the kids to be coming back, but I  saved myself a lot of fare. But I never really figured out the pattern to when the kids showed up (they didn't take the train every day), or why they didn't have to pass. I assume they hold month passes or something and the conductors just know this swarm of kids takes their train every so often.


30. Something To Snack On

At the college I went to, there was an app so you could pay for vending machines using your phone. It connected via bluetooth or something and load your balance from your app wallet into the vending machine. But there was a delay that allowed you to buy something in one machine, then before the machine could update the app with your new balance you could open up a second nearby vending machine and still have the whole old balance. Then the machines would update and subtract all the money. But if you didn't have enough it couldn't go into the negatives. So I would use the same 5 dollars to buy five dollars worth of snacks out of one machine and five dollars worth from another machine. Unfortunately, this was soon accounted for and corrected but it was a good two weeks.



29. Filling That Phone's Storage

Back in like 2006, I had a Kyocera brick phone on Cricket, and there was this debugging menu you could get into if you knew the password that the carrier set. Apparently, Cricket just set it to '0000' on most phones.

Once you got into that menu, there were a bunch of settings for Brew, which was kind of the app store at the time, that would switch the billing on apps from one-time credit card payment to charging it to your monthly bill. Most carriers supported this, but Cricket's shtick was unlimited everything, and they didn't have any way to charge you extra per month for overages or purchases.

So I flipped this flag in the debugging menu and got any and all apps for 100% free. The apps were like $5+ at the time, and I downloaded as many of them as I could ever want. I never got caught, and I played a TON of Diner Dash.


28. Saving That Work Money

So at my work (local bowling alley), a new work shirt costs $20. I have gone through probably a dozen of them in the last year because it's a terrible fabric that doesn't clean well.

I work front counter some of the week and I work in the kitchen the other half. In the kitchen, you are allowed to wear your own clothing, not a work shirt. For the last couple of months EVERY Sunday, they pull me from the kitchen to the counter about halfway through my shift. What I have been doing is "forgetting" to bring a work shirt because while it is common for me to go to the desk on Sundays, it is technically last minute and not scheduled.

Anyway, point is, in the last two months I have acquired about five new work shirts at no cost to me. Saves me $100 bucks.


27. Soda Brings Family Together

When I was in high school in the mid 2000s, Wendy's partnered with AirTran (now Southwest) to do some kind of promotion. It was like, buy 30 drinks and get a free one-way ticket or something. Drinks cost a little over a dollar back then. My family of four each got a round-trip ticket to visit my cousins in California for $300 total!

The promotion was so popular that they stopped it early. It was a great marketing ploy for everyone but seriously, I don't know how they thought they'd make any money off of this.

5044694570_74ec0990b5_b-1548385260977.jpgTomas Del Coro/Flickr

26. 10-Year-Old Fantasy Come True

When I was about 10 or so, our school district had an Accelerated Reading program and each school would have different prizes for meeting a certain amount of points.

Well, about halfway through the school year I had to change schools (but in the same district) and I realized that my AR points didn't carry over. You also weren't supposed to be able to take a quiz for the same book more than once, but it turns out that none of my information from previous years was transferred either. This wasn't really a big deal to me until I found out that once you reached 200 points (which equates to a ton of books) that the school offered to take you to lunch anywhere you want, and you got to use a limo to go.

I spent about a full day taking quizzes, and hit the 200 points in no time using books I had read that year, and the previous three or four years. I got to eat free Outback Steakhouse and watch Scooby Doo in a limo. My ten-year-old mind was blown.


25. A "Sirius" Listening Habit

When I bought my car, it came with a three-month subscription for SiriusXM, which included a password to use online. I used it at work more than anything. After the three months were up, the Sirius in the car stopped working, but the online login kept working... for about eight months! They eventually changed the site and my login didn't work anymore. Sad day.


24. Putting Coupons To Good Use

In California when Fresh and Easy was a thing, I used to get the $3/5/10 off coupons. People didn't realize you could scan each one three times (as long as you met the terms of the of purchase, or whatever). They would send physical coupons and coupons through email. So I would go in and scan whatever coupons I had the three times. Then I'd open my phone and scan those a couple times and gets as much off of my tab as possible. Saved me a ton of money.

8187121312_4c8cfd6655_b-1548385780001.jpgChris Potter/Flickr


23. Eating Good In The Neighborhood

I found a website that sells really good dog food. They will take into account all types of things about your dog and send some tailor-made chow. The food was expensive as heck but they had a free trial where they would send you a bag of dry food and some tins.

Thing is, you can set your dog to be whatever without any proof and they'll adjust the free trial based on your dog. So I turned my little Staff into a Great Dane and received a huge bag of dry food and like 80 servings of wet food.

The trial also came with extra trial coupons to give to friends and family. You couldn't do another one to your address so I signed up all of my family and said they had Great Danes and drove around and picked up all my dog food.

Reggie ate like a king for months.


22. Credits - Math = Graduation

I always read the course cross-listings in college.

To graduate, my school required at least two years of math credits. This wasn't much, of course, but it wasn't something I loved as a history major. Luckily, I noticed something strange — by default, the school cross-listed anything that was Computer Science as a Math credit on your transcript.

Once I found this out, I was able to take an Intro to Computers (not Computer Science, but computers in general) and a class on Microsoft Office. Both were joke classes that boosted my GPA and allowed me to sleep in.


21. A Quick Change

In Catholic high school, we would occasionally have a "dress down" day where you could wear regular clothes instead of the uniform. It cost $5 that would go toward activities in the school. The loophole was your attendance was taken in homeroom and you paid the $5 then... So I just wore my school uniform in homeroom and had clothes in my locker that I had brought previously.

I wouldn't pay and then I'd change into my clothes between homeroom and first period. No one checked after homeroom. So I scammed free "dress down" days for three years. I called it "Operation Chameleon".

32125306893_af32161541_b-1548386496747.jpgCOD Newsroom/Flickr

20. Pele Would Be Proud

Nike soccer cleats had a deal that if your shoe's integrity was compromised then you could return them and they would send you a new pair of cleats for free within a year.

So in high school freshman year, we bought one pair of shoes and at the end of every season we would take a knife and cut our shoes. We would send them back and without question they would send the newest pair back to us.

The year return policy guarantee would reset and we continued that throughout our entire high school soccer career. Free cleats for life.


19. Me-Hee For Yoo-Hoo

In high school, we had a vending machine that happened to have Yoohoo in it. My friends and I love Yoohoo, so we would always get a few every Friday before we left to go hang out.

One day, my buddy randomly decided to kick the machine after I pressed the Yoohoo button, and suddenly four of them dropped down for the price of one.

We thought it was a fluke, so the next week we tried it again, my buddy making sure to kick with exactly the same timing. Lo and behold, four Yoohoos dropped out again. It turned out that it would do it every single time, but only with Yoohoos and only if kicked at precisely the right time. My friend became like the Fonz of the vending machine because it seemed that only when he kicked it did free drinks pop out.

And that's the story of how every week we'd give away free Yoohoos to people passing by. At least until they replaced the machine.


18. A Split Decision

I used to work as a waiter in college at a restaurant that used the Aloha point-of-sale system. There was a loophole where you could continually reuse drinks for other tables as long as they paid cash. So you’d open up a ticket for one table and split off the teas onto a separate ticket. When checking out you could just split off the drinks and keep the extra cash while using the drinks you split off for another table. The extra cash was nice and I don’t think management ever caught on to this loophole.

201716397_bcaa122455_b-1548387255795.jpgJeffrey Beall/Flickr

17. Nothing Wrong With Extra Earbuds

Some time ago on Amazon, there was an earbud brand that had a special offer: If you bought earbud A and earbud B, you got earbud C for free. If you got two of earbud A or two of earbud B, they would cost 20% less.

Now, the offer was for the original price, and every price was at a 50% discount. Also, every offer was based on removing from the original price, in a non-proportional way, meaning that if I bought earbud C (original price $80) with the discount and the offer, the code behind it was 80/2 -80, so basically I had a $40 over-discount. And this was for every earbud set.

I paid $35 for five brand new earbuds that were worth $135 if they had coded it properly, and around $270 at the original price.


16. A Three-For-One Deal

I lived in a dorm in college. Each unit (one bathroom, one shared bedroom, a single bedroom and a hangout space) held three people. If one person moved out, there was a chance that a new person could be assigned overnight. You could come home from classes and have a stranger moving in. The other option was to pay extra and the cost would be split between the two remaining roommates, but no one wanted to pay the extra because it was college and no one had extra money.

We found that if just one person said they wanted to pay for the third spot, but the other person claimed they couldn't afford it, the whole unit was put on hold while the two roommates figured out a compromise. We never figured out a compromise, but we did get a three-person unit for the regular cost of student housing.


15. A Definite Hat Trick

A few years ago, when I went to buy NHL Gamecenter (service to stream all the out of market hockey games), I figured out it was cheaper for those in Russia and other European countries. I think it was $150 for the US and $100 for Russia. So I just used a free proxy to change my IP to a Russian one, and when I went to the same purchase page the price dropped $50. Last time I checked that didn't work — now they base the price off the billing address of your credit card. I'm surprised they didn't do that in the first place.


14. Pizza All The Time

In college, we ordered a lot of pizza. One pizza place had a buy-10-next-one's-free offer. We quickly had a free pizza earned, but my friend wanted to add a drink or breadsticks to his free pizza. Because he paid for the transaction, the computers did not cancel out the free pizza. My friend quickly realized that if he added the cheapest side item, the pizza would always be free.

Employees at the pizza place caught on, but could not override the computer. Eventually, we got a pizza delivered with, "Last time, guys," written under the lid of the box. The next time we called, the pizza place informed us that we had been blacklisted.

So we just hung out at someone else's house and began ordering from two places at the same time. It was fun when the two delivery drivers would show up at the same time.

supreme_pizza-1548387848959.jpgScott Bauer/Agricultural Research Service

13. It's Time To Duel

This was about five years back when I still played the YuGiOh trading card game. A new set came out that was about $20 per box. Target ordered them in bulk so they arrived in larger boxes that contained five sets per box. For some reason, Target didn't bother opening the larger boxes so I just took the whole thing to the cashier and got five sets for the price of one. I told a few friends and we ended up driving to four different Targets and got the same results.


12. Have A Coke And A Smile

Back in the late 90s, Coca-Cola had this promotion: When you found a bottle icon under the cap of a plastic bottle, you would get another free Coke. Needless to say, that other free bottle had the same promotion on it and you could check under the cap.

As kids, we didn't even buy them. We would go on the streets, find one lucky cap, and get unlimited cola till the end of a promotion.


11. Don't Touch That Dial

A local radio station had a contest where you could call in when they played the same artist back to back to win a prize. Turns out they had a "now playing" and "up next" feature on their web site. My girlfriend at the time would start calling in before the second song even came on. We won tons of prizes ranging from concert tickets to a laptop.


10. Do What Tastes Right

They used to have a promotion at Wendy's, probably six or seven years ago, where if you filled a survey out on your receipt you could get a free burger.

I guess they didn't notice that you could take the survey on the receipt of the free burger and just keep getting free ones. So we would just go after school and chain five free burgers after we had bought only one.

We did that for a few days until they finally caught on and stopped accepting it.


9. I Want Candy

An Italian restaurant that my family loves had a candy claw machine that we played every time we went. The trick to learn was if the claw closed all the way, it thought that meant you didn't get anything, and would let you play until you did get something. This means we would go for individual items that would fit into the claw perfectly (one sucker, one laffy taffy) so it would close all the way, instead of trying to get a big lot all at once, that way it wouldn't register the candy and we could keep going and going.

We actually took so long once that our parents made us leave before our turn was up -- but we still left with handfuls of candy. The best part? IT ONLY COST A QUARTER!

24711842859_63473262c2_b-1548389363119.jpgSteven Depolo/Flickr

8. Cheating At The Workplace

My old job had a loophole about time. It worked like this: If you were scheduled for an eight a.m. shift, you had a seven minute window to arrive and be on time. If you arrived past the seven minutes, you were considered 15 minutes late.

Loophole: It worked the same for clocking out. If you stayed and helped for an extra seven minutes and clocked out, you got an extra 15 minutes of pay. During my tenure there, I would always ask if people needed extra help and make sure I stayed past the seven minutes. This went on for a full year. Got probably close to an extra 24 hours of pay.


7. Making A Quick Buck

In 2014 I had the Moviepass and only a part-time job, so I would go to the movies a lot. If I went early, I would use my Moviepass to buy a later movie from the kiosk, then go to the box office to exchange it for the earlier show. Since the early shows are cheaper, AMC would usually give me the difference in cash.

1024px-amc_theaters_-12686355595--1548392387606.jpgPaul Sableman/Flickr

6. Let Me Upgrade You

I used to work at Papa John's to pay my way through college. There was a contest we had where if you got someone to "upsize" their pizza from a medium to a large for an extra $2, you got points toward movie tickets. So any time someone ordered a large, I simply put in a medium and "upsized" it. I won every week. My coworkers didn't notice this obvious loophole and it didn't cost the customer any extra money, so I didn't have a problem with this morally gray behavior. Getting movie tickets every week was huge in college.


5. The Heat Is On

At my university, the parking pass was like $200 a month for the underground heated parking. Long story short, we figured out the pass we got to let us in had a magnet strip on the back which was useless because the machine read the barcode at the top. Me and like six of my friends bought one, photocopied it, and glued it on top of older membership cards. It ended up costing like $30 a month. That was the best year of my life. We live in Canada, so underground heated parking in the winter was the dream.

11724098754_da09321750_b-1548390853430.jpgdaryl mitchell/Flickr

4. Breaking The Teacher Instead

In high school, our science class had one of those projects where you had to drop an egg and build something to keep it from breaking. The assignment sheet said, the egg had to "Fall six feet without breaking." This particular teacher was a stickler for following instructions, often taking points off for minor things like failing to write the date in the preferred format.

Come the day of the project, one of the kids who had no obvious egg-catching contraption walked up to the front of the class where the measurer thingy was, lifted his egg up to about a half a foot above the six-foot marker, and dropped his egg. It splatters all over the floor and the teacher told him he was getting an F.

That smug legend replied, "Why? The egg fell six feet without breaking."

I wish we had camera phones back then because the look of realization on the teacher's face was epic. The teacher tried to tell him that isn't what he meant, but we all reminded him about "always following instructions." He got an A and the next year the instructions were much more precise.


3. Life At Steak

In college one weekend, my girlfriend and I were celebrating some special occasion. Maybe a birthday, don't quite remember. At any rate, I went to Kroger to pickup some steaks, and I got this pack of two really nice filet mignons. They were normally priced around $25 depending on total weight but there was a special going on so they were "only" $18. But we'd stuck to our grocery budget that month and could afford the splurge, so I got them.

When I get to the checkout it rings up at the $25 price. Store policy was that if meats rang up with the wrong price, they were free, so I walked out with two free steaks. Of course, being a broke college student I walked my butt right back in there and filled up the cart with every last package of those steaks and they all rang up wrong so they were free.

We ate delicious steak for every meal for a few days after that. We were tired of it by the time we finally finished them.


2. Always Getting Connected

I managed to get free internet access during the early days of the internet. If you signed up for a free month on AOL and then called to cancel, they would give you a free month or two of internet. You could cancel at the end of that period then sign back up with a different checking or savings account, and repeat the same process. By that time, the original account would fall off their list of known accounts so you could go back to that one. I got two years of free internet that way, and got my mom perma-banned from AOL.


1. A Receipt Rarity

At Burger King, in 2006 or so, they had a very small sign near the menu that read, "If you don't receive your receipt before your meal, your meal is free." I went every single Sunday for months on end to get lunch for all the staff at work. I stayed absolutely focused and sharp 100% of the time waiting for the day that I was handed over food before I was handed the receipt.

When it happened, I'll never forget it — it was an absolute beast of an order as well: chili cheese bites, onion rings, ice creams, king-size meals. The whole thing was handed over before a receipt.

The guy's face (clearly a new employee as well, no guilt here though) was so confused when I politely drew his attention to the very small sign on the wall. He went away and got the manager and even she looked as if she had never seen it before. But she honored it and I pranced all the way back to work with the biggest smile ever all over my face.

The sign must have been promptly taken down as it was never seen again

28759198130_58629ea9c8_b-1548388002319.jpgMike Mozart/Flickr


Timothy Tsui/Flickr