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How to Win a Sweepstakes

We’ve all seen the surveys on the bottom of the Home Depot / Kohl’s / grocery store receipts. But does anyone actually win them?

Yes. I have.

In 2009 I entered a Kohl’s survey at the bottom of my receipt and won the $100 gift card. At first, I was skeptical. But then I called the number at the bottom of the email and it was true I won!!

This started a whirlwind of winnings. I searched online for more surveys where I win gift cards and soon I stumbled onto a few good sites to find sweepstakes, but I also learned what was a scam.

I stumbled upon a website called Only Contests.  James Barton finds out all the details and then posts them. I’ve mostly won from this site. I spend about 30 mins a day using auto-fill of my information from the contests he posts. There is also Sweeties Sweeps from the text to win posts I’ve won a few things.

It’s not necessary to get a separate email for entering sweeps/contests. I enter sweeps from websites like Purex or other big name other corporations and I don’t get spam or viruses I only get newsletters, which I opt out of as soon as I get one. But sometimes newsletters will have a link to another sweepstakes so I tend to keep it, scroll through it and delete as needed.

How can you tell the difference between a fake sweeps and a real one?

Anything that has typos, grammar errors, and the terms and conditions say that you need to make a purchase to participate.

You shouldn’t have to pay taxes, shipping & handling, or a processing fee.

Never ever wire money to anyone to be able to claim your prize.

You will also never get a phone call. I rarely got an email that I won. My prize just appeared in the mail or delivered by the UPS delivery person.

The Federal Trade Commission has a whole database on what are real or fake sweepstakes. If anything looks phishy. Look it up before you fill in your info.

Here is my sweepstakes list of winnings from 2009 to now:

Sweepstakes Winnings

18. Pepsi All-in to Win Promotion an Applebee’s gift card ($11)
17. Biggest Night of the Year Sweepstakes Travel Earbud Set ($30)
16. ConAgra Scan it, Score it Sweepstakes iTunes Gift Card ($25)
15. Buckle’s Best of the Blues Sweepstakes 6th Prize Winner (Buckle $10 gift card)
14. Dole’s Big Apple Getaway Instant Win Game 5th Prize Winner (Free product coupon – $4.99)
13. Oscar Mayer Selects Sweepstakes (Free product coupon – $6.50)
12. Barney & Thomas The Train DVD Bundle (OC Parenting Contest – $25)
11. Ladies’ Home Journal magazine subscription (Purex Sweepstakes – $24.99)
10. Screened bottom board (Bee hive equipment raffle – $39)
9. $5 e-gift card from Cracker Barrel (Cracker Barrel Spin N Win Prize)
8. Chapstick Are your Lips Inspired? Instant Win Game, Grand Prize Winner of a Xbox 360 + Kinect, and the Dance Central 2 Game ($350)
7. 40+1 sheets of Ultra Pro coupon holder protectors (blog giveaway – $25)
6. Ban deodorant full-size product (Ban’s Facebook giveaway – $2)
5. Roku Movie Night Basket (movie candy pack plus 15 coupons, each of which is redeemable for $10 off any single purchase of a Roku 2 player – $30)
4. Borsa Bella E-Reader Bag/ Purse (blog giveaway – $75)
3. Energizer Talking Smoke & Gas Detector (Energizer’s Facebook giveaway – $15)
2. Little Looster – potty training step stool (blog giveaway – $35)
1. $100 gift card from Kohl’s (Kohl’s survey on bottom of receipt)

Have you tried to win a sweepstakes?

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