The Prize Pool

It’s been a bit quiet on the winning side for a few weeks so I thought I might ask myself a few questions. What are the prizes I would most like to win? Prizes are becoming (along with ease of entry) one of the main criteria I use to decide which competitions to enter and which ones to give a miss. There are so many prizes on offer every day. It is sometimes hard to choose which competitions to enter.

Travel prizes (or travel vouchers) for either local or overseas holidays or cruises or train trips or weekends away at five-star resorts or health spas and the like appear to be among the most prolific and popular prizes chosen by promoters to attract entrants to their competitions. While I would love to win any of these (especially the health spa ones as I need a bit of rejuvenating) unfortunately some health issues (that’s why I need that spa) prevent me from flying or travelling too far by car. So everyone out there has one less entrant to worry about. I do notice one thing about travel prizes and that is there is usually only one main prize winner and they are also very well publicised – so much harder to win than many of the others.

Cars are another popular prize but like holidays and other high-value prize there is usually one winner and it is probably not going to be me. I don’t drive anymore anyway, but of course I could always sell it.

At the other end of the prize pool spectrum are the many small less valuable prizes such as cosmetics, CDs, books, theatre and movie tickets, toys, kitchen utensils and other household goodies. They are much easier to win for a number of reasons. First, there are generally less entries as the prizes are not as exciting as a holiday or car. There are generally more of them to win with one entry, maybe 10 or 12 but some promoters like supermarket chains might have 50 or more to give away. Much better odds with these! I recently won a Totem Tennis Set which was one of 2000 prizes in conjunction with the Steggles promotion of Australian tennis. Not a great win but a perfect gift for my grandchildren next Christmas.

The majority of competitions have prizes that sit somewhere in the middle. Prizes such as BBQs, iphones, ipads, kitchen gadgets, shopping vouchers, bed linen, clothes etc will always come in handy to keep or to be put away and used for gifts. Shopping vouchers or preloaded Visa cards are my all time favourites as then I get to choose what to buy for myself (or I take us out to lunch for a treat!). I always love to win toys and books for my grandchildren and there are a multitude of websites with competitions for these, like Huggies, Kidspot and Mouths of Mums. I feel I will never need to buy a toy for a birthday or Christmas again!

My other favourite prizes are DVDs. When a new movie or TV series is released on DVD or BlueRay, heaps of websites use the promotion and give quite a number of them away. Beats buying them or renting them from my local video shop and I can always share them around with friends.

A couple of times I have had to chase up a prize like the other day when I sent an email to check if a prize – a yoghurt-making kit – had been despatched as I had not received it. A courteous person responded to my email saying it would probably arrive in a week or so. I thought that was very nice however it actually arrived with a courier today. On other occasions they have arrived unannounced. Along with this parcel came another one – a smaller one with a classical music CD inside from the ABC shop. It was a bit of a surprise as I can’t remember the competition and there was no letter inside. Still, it will make great listening in the afternoons while I take my regular nap.

So off for a snooze until I get some energy to enter a few more comps maybe with a monetary prize this time. That would always be nice!

Swimming In The iPool by JD Hancock

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After working for thirty years as a journalist/historian, Jenny started writing sci-fi for children and adults and occasionally illustrating them (when she was not spending time with her grandkids). Most have been published in The School Magazine, anthologies and online. She has also been contributing to a wide variety of magazines such as Antiques and Collectables for Pleasure and Profit, Australiana and Nurture. Now essentially retired Jenny has taken up a challenge of entering and (hopefully winning) competitions. Jenny will track her journey through this challenge here at www.competitions.com.au.

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