Free .COM domain (with free private registration) for one year!

When I first started registering domains, I used to use GoDaddy.com for all my domain purchasing needs. I picked GoDaddy originally because

  1. I had heard really good things about them.
  2. GoDaddy often offers coupons that allow users to purchase domains for cheap (i.e. 1 year registration for 99 cents).

In fact I registered my first domain using one of the above mentioned coupons. However, when renewal time came around, I realized the fact that I would have to not only pay to renew my domain (about $10 a year), but I would also have to pay for private registration (an extra $5 a year if I remember properly). That is when I realized that I was overpaying; yes GoDaddy has great service (they are very fast in registration times and make it very easy to change nameservers) but service really doesn’t matter after the initial setup because one rarely ever interacts with the domain afterwards. In other words, any domain registrar with 100% up-time would do. So, I migrated to 1and1.com because 1and1 not only has cheaper yearly renewals (about $9 a year) but they also provide free private registration. Yes, 1and1 service is a lot slower than GoDaddy’s; you won’t get instant domain registration (can takes up to 24 hours to process) and changing nameservers also has some lag time when compared to GoDaddy. However, 1and1 provides the 100% up-time I was looking for and for a cheaper yearly price. dotTech was the first domain I registered with 1and1 and since then I have not used anyone else for my domain registration needs.

Update: Please realize that I am not praising 1and1 or telling you to move all your business to them – they have a really bad reputation when it comes to web hosting and customer support. Rather, I am saying my personal experience is that they are a good enough domain registrar – I have had nothing but a positive experience with them, albeit I have not dealt with their customer service much which is what most people complain about.

That said, by luck, I visited 1and1.com today because I was thinking about registering another domain. When I got to 1and1.com, I noticed that 1and1 is running a promotion allowing users to register a .COM domain for free for one year:

At first I thought it was one of those “purchase-our-webhosting-package-and-we-will-give-you-a-domain-for-free” type deals. However, it isn’t – it is a legitimate promotion that truly allows you to get a .COM domain for free for one year ($8.99 yearly renewal fee afterwards which will automatically be charged 1 year later unless you cancel your domain):

The free domain comes with the free private registration that all 1and1 domains come with (you have to manually setup the private registration; you will be given the option either during registration or you can do it via the backend after registration). Do note, however, you will be shown offers to purchase web hosting, get Norton Internet Security 2010, etc.; you do not have to get any of those offers – just click “No Thanks” and continue registering. After you have successfully registered, you will get a confirmation message…

…and all you have to do is wait for the confirmation e-mail from 1and1 to get started with your new domain! So what are you waiting for? Go get your (free) domain today!

Click here to visit 1and1.com

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32 comments

  1. Tom

    Watch them! They turned my girlfriend over to a “collecton agency” because she was a few days late on a renewal! that was set up for “automatic billing”! Ended up costing her the cost of renewing the domain name AND paying off the damn collection agency, for a “payed in full” fee, I believe it was around $109, so here credit would be ruined! I moved all my domains from them after that little fiasko.

    Don’t take my word for it, simply go to this Google link. Page after page of complaints :
    http://lmgtfy.com/?q=1and1.com+%2Cnco%2C+collection+agency

  2. Numsekrummen.dk

    A little news from Demonoid.me regarding GoDaddy ^^

    “On Thursday, the 25th of November 2010, the Torrent Finder domain ( http://www.torrent-finder.com ), registered with Godaddy, was seized by the U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) without any prior takedown notice or specific allegations of infringing activity. The Domain IP was suddenly changed without the registrar’s knowledge and the system displayed a “Pending Registry Action” message on the domain’s status. No contact was given until Wednesday, the 1st of December, when Godaddy replied to my inquiries, giving a contact for an ICE agent. On Thursday, the 2nd of December, David Snead who is representing Torrent Finder contacted the ICE agent in charge who told him that “the orders are under seal, but that the seal will be lifted today or tomorrow”. However, we have not heard from them until writing this post. Another email from Godaddy clarified that the action was taken by VeriSign: “please understand that these actions were taken by Verisign at the Registry level; and not by Go Daddy”. The story was first reported on TorrentFreak and NYTimes.com.

  3. buyerbeware

    i will never use this service again.  they did give me a free domain name.  then they gave me a package to set up a web page.  then i spent forty-eight hours staring at my monitor wondering why nothing is as easy as point and click.  i’m not a webpage expert, though i know the principles and objectives of creating a webpage, and a bit of code to make one work.  their site and services are so difficult to navigate that i would never even recommend this *&$%# to my worst enemy.  i called and cancelled everything and now it is done.  no domain and no web page.  they wouldn’t let me use the name i signed up for, and gave me some numbers and a .us address.  also not allowed without paying extra is using your own code.  the webpage would actually cost over thirty dollars a month to get up and running with my own code, rather than their overly-basic junk pre-built pages.  this service sux and should never be allowed to operate in the free world, or even in prison for that matter.

  4. Gil

    @28: Have you contacted 1&1 and asked those questions of them. If anyone would know – they should. If you don’t get the answers you’re looking for or you get the run-around – then consider moving elsewhere. There are numerous companies with better service and knowledgeable staff. So what if it costs you a couple extra dollars a year when you get better service and are not treated like a number.
    Good luck and let us know how your saga continues.

  5. buyerbeware

    i just signed up at 1&1.  now i wonder whether i should have.  i want my own web page with my own web site address.  is this what i’m gonna get?  or is this just a place to sign up for something i don’t know about?  am i going to be able to build my own web page and have people visit it, or am i merely going to have a web address that is going to be useless except for bragging rights that i have one?  so much to consider and so much to be confused about.  i know nothing about hosting or pages, though i do know a bit about html and javascript, so i will be able to build a web page, but am now not sure whether this is the purpose of 1&1.  any suggestions and or advice would be appreciated.  i will cancel if this is not what i am getting.

  6. Gil

    @Camille: That’s too bad Camille. Really!

    Not sure why it’s pending approval unless it’s controversial or one that could be considered a deterrent (or whatever term they use) to a known company.

    I just applied for another domain last week. I had confirmation of the domain name being mine and that it had been processed. It took forever though – 45 minutes. :)

    The process had to go through one batch cycle for it to be effective and I was sent an email the next day telling me it was processed and ready to be used.

    In Motion Hosting does a superior job, IMHO, than competitors and their communication means a lot to me. You always know where you stand with them – no guessing or surprises!

    Good luck with your request and I hope you get it soon. It can be frustrating.

  7. Gil

    @15: how can you not own a credit card if you’re on a visa. something wrong with that statement. Oh, wait – that’s our lovely English language. hahaha

    As for the subject of this thread. I tried 1×1 about six years ago. When I had questions and contacted them, I was either told they would look into it and get back to me (they never did) or the voice message referred me to their website. With such poor customer service – I dumped them in the first 30 days. No regrets!
    Not sure what they’re up to today, but I’ll never need to find out.

    GoDaddy, IMO, is all gimmick. They may be average or even above average in what they claim to do, but I’ve heard people tell of escalated prices, poor customer service and mysterious lost files on their server. All hearsay? Don’t know because some of that conversation was reinforced on this thread.

    For me, after dumping 1×1, I lucked out. I found an up-and-coming company with 100% up-time, low prices, nothing hidden – they are up-front with their customers, they assist customers, they have great customer service and 24×7, and I never get an out-sourced rep – they are American and speak English.
    Thank you for six years of great service In Motion Hosting and to many more to come.

  8. Pete

    They currently have problems actually registering any domain – I have been waiting since late last week and nothing has happened. The customer service responds but is hopeless. GoDaddy is more expensive but at least it works.

  9. normofthenorth

    You seem to talk about new domains, but not about transferring an existing one.
    I have a COM registered with GoDaddy now. It’s also “hosted” with GoDaddy, but it’s idle, with only a “wait for it!” page. I want to keep it, and it’s coming up for renewal, for ~$10. Can I transfer it to 1and1 and save the $ for  a year?

  10. Ashraf
    Author/Mr. Boss

    @Darthyoda: If I recall properly, I didn’t want anything to do with their hosting services, which has a really bad reputation; and I still don’t want anything to do with it. However, their domain registering services don’t seem to cause problems.

  11. Chris R. of Top Tier Computer Services

    I currently have 43 domains registered with 1&1 Internet. Everything from .com to .mobi. They are for my businesses that I run. I had tried other providers with no luck in terms of pricing and support. Everytime I have called in for tech support, my issue has been resolved to my satisfaction.

    Their FAQ and Help site answers a majority of my questions. To all those in the above comments who speak negatively of 1&1, to each their own. Not everyone will be happy with every service. It just depends on your particular experience.

    I for one am a true believer of value, and 1&1 Internet is both a value and necessity in my line of work.

    We recommend Domain Name Specials at 1&1!

    Chris R. of Top Tier Computer Services

  12. Darthyoda

    Funny, when I recommended 1&1 a year ago, you wanted nothing to do with it.  I got in when they first started in the US, and were giving away 3 years free hosting packages, which also included 1 free domain name.  I’ve been with them since, and haven’t had any troubles, except maybe once a year our sites may be down for a few hours.  The only problem is that there’s no way to check the status of they’re servers.

  13. Samuel

    @Jim Anderson: True a lot of free regiters don’t need a CC, but you’re forgeting that 1&1 isn’t a free regiter. It’s just a special so that you pay nothing for the first year, then they auto bill you the cost, so they have a legit need for it.

  14. Jim Anderson

    Hi again,
    Also, I might add that Pay Pal requires a credit card to register.  So, not being able to secure a credit card makes it a tad difficult to sign up for Pay Pal.
    -Jeeem-

  15. Jim Anderson

    Hey Ashraf,
    Lovely domain.  However, I checked it out and saw what I was afraid I’d see…they want your credit card number.
    There are other free domain sites that don’t require a credit card, I know, I’ve tried a couple.  I don’t own a credit card nor do I do business with Pay Pal online.  So, after all the registration bunk, I had to dump it when it came to “payment.”
    I live in a nice little third-world country which does not give me the permission to own a credit card since I am only on a 1-year visa.  So, I’d love to see you do a review on free domain sites that don’t require credit card data submission.
    The trouble, I’ve found, are the free domains that are totally free, are extremely complicated.  It’s almost as if they make it difficult for you because it’s free.  So, maybe you can find a simple freebie?
    -Jeeem-

  16. pao

    does it take a long time for them to send the confirmation? i registered mine and i really didn’t have to pay for anything. they just want a paypal address so they can automatically bill you next time, i guess.

  17. IT3

    Thanks Ashraf for the tip but after checking into a new domain I want to register they had too many catches – and wanted $32 today…
    I don’t think so…
    I am staying with TotalChoiceHosting…

  18. Ashraf
    Author/Mr. Boss

    @Locutus: GoDaddy always has .INFOs for that cheap. In fact right now if you get a .COM from GoDaddy you get a .INFO for free.

    @Skye-hook: I don’t know how Tripod works so I can’t help you out. The best I can tell you is redirect whatever domain you signup for from 1and1 and redirect it to your Tripod website.

    @Locutus: Yeah, I forgot to mention that. My bad. (Locutus, do you have a PayPal account? You can create “temporary” CCs with PayPal accounts. Even if you don’t have any balance in the PayPal account, it won’t matter since this is free.)

    @Dick: Yeah, heard about them. 1and1 just seems more legit to me, but I haven’t used namecheap.com so I don’t know.

  19. Skye-hook

    Sounds great, but then I will also need a hosting for my webpages. Currently I use Tripod, as it’s free & I can run things like pages or pics or sounds from the site in other sites, such as Cybertown. (They call it hot-linking.) Can I still use my tripod account with the 1and1 domain name? How does that work? I know nothing. :) Really, I know nothing about it. I do know I can’t have much online presence when I get my site looking better if I just use the tripod URL. It’s http://www.skye-hook.tripod.com. (Which site is now all mixed up & a pure mess, so don’t bother looking at it! lol but true.) So.. and doesn’t everyone want a domain? I sure do. I’m intending to set up a really interesting site, got it all planned out, but the URL thing is bumming me out. Very discouraging. Thanks for any knowledge you can pass along. LOVE YA on GOTD! We sure depend on you over there! :)

  20. Ash

    I am really after a hosting solution and been searching for that for almost a week but finding it bit difficult. Can you advise me some provider please. I can see a lot of provider is offering .com domain for free with their hosting plan as low as US$1.99 with unlimited hosting domain pointing but reading a lot of horrible stories at the same time. I need a hosting place where I can host multiple domain for no extra cost and can have enough bandwidth. I am from Australia and doesn’t mind to host in USA. Please advise and thanks for this very useful website and I really appreciate this initiatives. Thanks, Ash