Most of the domains such .com .cn .us are becoming more expensive. If you get discount for the first year, the registrar usually charge you much higher for the following years. Take Godaddy for example. That caught lots of our customers by surprise.
For, you can get a .com domain for $8 first yet, then $12 for the following year, but free Whois is worth the extra cost, now go Cheaper Domain With Free Whois Privacy

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You can also watch this video to learn how to set up the free domain and free hosting:

Just remember, do not try to get too popular keyword domain or long name, then you don’t have to pay anything for the domain.
So just tell your friend, you can get a free domain at