Santa freebies 2023

Free letters from Santa, track Santa on Christmas Eve, personalised Santa videos and more

With Christmas fast approaching, there are plenty of Santa-centric freebies about, designed to up the fun factor in the run-up to the big day.

Free personalised letters from Santa

ENDED: NSPCC £8 letter from Santa

For a suggested £8 donation to the NSPCC, you can personalise a letter from Santa for a loved one. There's eight themes to choose from, including ‘Baby’s first Christmas’ and ‘The Christmas Express’.

The deadline for ordering your letter via post was Wednesday 13 December

Donations support children in need by providing services such as Childline. The letter, available in English or Welsh, will arrive in the post in time for Christmas. The NSPCC says that the deadline to order the letter is Wednesday 13 December.

ENDED: Royal Mail 'free' letter from Santa

Each year, Santa's elves at the Royal Mail can help you get a free letter from Santa, if you write to him by late November.

Santa must have received your letter by

Thursday 30 November

Royal Mail says the deadline is Thursday 30 November, but advised that sooner is better for a good chance of getting a reply.

Technically, it isn't 100% free as you'll need to post your letter to Santa with a stamp (£1.25 first class, 75p second). Just remember to include full names and address, so Santa knows where to send his reply.

It's also worth remembering things can go wrong, such as when demand is very high, as we reported a few years ago in our Royal Mail fails to deliver MSE News story. Royal Mail says it can't guarantee a reply, even if you've sent your letter nice and early. 

So while a nice festive freebie, it's a good idea to prep kids for disappointment (just in case) by reminding them Santa's very busy – so may not write back to everyone. If this is the case, or you can't wait for Santa's reply, you can download a card for free, too. 

Where to send your letters

Pop it in the post with a stamp on (remember the deadline for them to recieve it is Thursday 30 November), and address it to: Santa/Father Christmas, Santa's Grotto, Reindeerland, XM4 5HQ.

Or in Welsh: Sion Corn, Ogof Sion Corn, Gwlad Y Ceirw, XM4 5HQ.

ENDED: RNIB free Braille letter

Each year, Santa has some elves at the Royal Institute of Blind People (RNIB), who help him respond to children who are blind or partially-sighted. Simply fill in the free application form online to receive a Braille or large print letter, or audio CD from Santa.

The deadline for Braille, audio CD and large print letters was Friday 1 December

Read more at the RNIB. Some of previous years' letters gave Martin leaky eyes. See them in his blog: Read letters from blind children to Santa.

Personalised Santa videos

Now live: Portable North Pole free video

Each year, a website called Portable North Pole lets you send friends or family a free personalised video message from Santa incredibly cute for kids to receive and potentially hilarious for grown-ups to exchange. It'll ask you to upload photos of yourself and the recipient, plus a picture of the gift they'd most like to receive for Christmas. We've heard reports of this not working for some users who've created one before, but that they tried again a few weeks later and it worked.

This year's free videos are now available, so click the link above to tailor yours

IMPORTANT: The link above takes you to a range of videos on Portable North Pole – some are free, some cost money. So make sure you're looking at the free options if you don't want to pay – if at any point you're asked to enter payment info, go back and try again.

It only takes a few minutes to set up. Here's a still from one we made for Martin a few years ago:

Track Santa on Christmas Eve

Starts 24 December: Free NORAD Santa online tracking

Each year, free website NORAD Tracks Santa opens its doors at the start of December to let families track Santa's progress as he visits homes around the world on Christmas Eve and in to the day itself. 

There's even a free mobile app (iOS or Android) so you can check Santa's whereabouts if you're on the move yourself.

You can only track Santa from Christmas Eve itself (his location's top secret till then).

Starts 24 December: Track Santa for free with Sky

You can also track Santa if you have Sky Q, Sky Glass or Sky Stream. You'll be able to find the map within the Apps section of the Sky Menu, or you can use the voice search button on your remote and ask "Where's Santa/Father Christmas?"

You'll be able to track Santa from 10am on Christmas Eve until 11am on Christmas Day. Santa will be visiting these UK cities at the following times:

London, England at 1.25am on Christmas Day

Cardiff, Wales at 1.30am on Christmas Day

Leeds, England at 1.32am on Christmas Day

Livingston, Scotland at 1.35am on Christmas Day

Belfast, Northern Ireland at 1.42am on Christmas Day

See the Sky website for full timings of Santa's trip around the globe.

Note for parents: the NORAD and Sky trackers will be running at different times, so best to pick just one to avoid a less-than-festive argument about which one's the real Santa!

Spotted out of date info/broken links? Email: