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Where to enter a car competition for free and a listing of them online
Winning one is a great way to save money and get a free treat. A standard new one such as a Daewoo, Fiat or Mazda generally costs between £8000 to £18000 and maybe more if you want extras like metallic paint, sun roof, air conditioning, etc. A sports, 4 x 4 or convertible may be beyond the reach of your current budget but there is every chance of winning such a vehicle. This article will discuss the pros and cons and where to do them for free.
Win a Car
There are many on the internet at sites like www.borntoloaf.co.uk often with free entry. Do also consider them in your local paper, national newspapers and magazines and TV shows. We will look at each in turn to discuss the pro and con of each and detail any scams to help you avoid those. Each link on this page has been carefully vetted to avoid such scams.
Online Car Competitions
The major advantage is that they are free to enter. Other advantages of online car competitions is that there are no costs involved like phone calls or the price of a stamp. Some sites like Instantwin4now will even allow you to register your personnel details and then will remember them each time you log in with a special user name and password. The advantage of this is that you can do many each week quickly and easily. They add new ones each day and have several live at any time such as a Toyota Yaris or Mini Cooper.
There are a few disadvantages but do not let these put you off because there are ways round them. The first disadvantage is the websites will have your name, address, telephone number and e-mail. Do not worry too much about them having these details because the comp sites will only use these if you are successful and who will mind that! Do worry about giving them your e-mail address though because you will receive mailings from them. This is the price you pay and is the way that they make their money so that they can in turn buy prizes. There is nothing wrong with this and reputable sites will generally send no more than one e-mail a week. Some of the offers are handy though, such as Christmas or Valentine gift ideas. You can overcome this spam problem by using an e-mail address just for entries. But do check this account at least every 28 days because if you have won the promoters may well contact you by e-mail rather than phone or post. Though for major wins like organisers will probably phone or write to you if they do not get a reply by e-mail. That said you would not want to miss out on a prize for the sake of a few minutes checking your e-mails. Some like a reply within a set time, often as short as 7 days, otherwise they will give the prize to someone else and you will loose out. This is standard in many terms and conditions.
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The only other disadvantage, which cannot be overcome, is that there will be hundreds of thousands of entries to internet competitions. But please do not let this put you off - you cannot win if you do not enter, and someone has to be lucky.
Win A Car Competitions
Many daily, Saturday or Sunday newspapers run win a car competitions which are free. The disadvantages of these is the cost of the newspaper, stamps and envelopes. Some ask you to collect daily or weekly tokens as part of the rules of entry. So the cost could run into many pounds. However if you normally buy it then this is not really an additional cost nor problem. Even if you do have the expense of several pounds of buying papers it could be worth considering, especially if you are lucky!
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Newspaper ones generally attract hundreds of thousands of entries but local newspapers may only have entries in the single thousands of figures. So the odds of winning locally are much higher. The advantage of a locally run one is that you will not have far to collect it because they are usually sponsored by local garages or salesrooms. They can usually be found in The Sun, The Daily Mail, The Mirror, The Daily Telegraph, Sunday Times, The Daily Record, The Guardian, The Sunday Post, etc. Browse your local newsagent and flick through the papers before making your purchase. Some will be advertised on television during the commercial breaks.
Car Insurance Competition
There are others that you can enter if you already have the vehicle of your dreams. One such example is the car insurance competition at Instantwin4now. Examples of others include free petrol for a year, a personalised registration number, a set of 5 alloy wheels, 20 driving lessons with BSM, alarm system, Michelin tyres, etc. These smaller value prizes like the wheel trims, satellite navigation system or digital tyre inflator attract fewer entries so your odds for these are much greater.
Most of the weekly magazines like Take a Break or Chat have free ones. The major advantage of this type is that the entry form can be sent in or telephoned through for all their contests. The other comps have prizes like money, weekend trips and holidays. So you could win cash or a vacation. You also have an entertaining magazine to read. Some compers, the nickname for people who enter them full time or professionally, buy all such weekly and monthly magazines just for these.
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There are some websites where you have to pay to enter. The cost of your entry pays for the vehicle and it usually closes when a set number of tickets have sold. Some people see these as a scam others think they are a good idea because you know exactly how many entries will be received. These generally have entries in the single thousands so your odds are relatively good depending on how many tickets you can afford to buy. Each ticket will range from £10 through to £60 depending on the prize. Such tend to be the higher value prestige ones such as a Porsche Boxster, Aston Martin, Audi, BMW, Ferrari, Bentley, Lamborghini or Mercedes to name a few. These may be well beyond the financial reach of some people but they can afford a ticket to the prize draw and can be compared to doing a lottery or betting. You buy these tickets thinking you may win or lose but you have a bit of fun and dream. Some people buy several tickets at a time to increase their chances, there are discounts available for multi ticket purchases. An example is Best Of The Best. They and their prizes can often be seen on display at the airport terminals of London Gatwick, Heathrow, Luton, Manchester, Glasgow and Edinburgh. Hundreds have been given away and these have been worth over £7million. Fortunately you do not have to go to the airports to buy a ticket. These can be purchased from their website www.bestofthebest.co.uk
Winning is like a dream come true and can save you thousands of pounds. But are there any disadvantages? Fortunately the answer to this question is only a few and they are so insignificant when compared to the advantages.
The first disadvantage is the costs of running the vehicle. You may be expected to insure it before you drive away. The salesroom that you collect it from may try and persuade you to buy their insurance to make some money from you. This may sound convenient but may not be the best value around and some policies may not give you the cover you need. It is best to find out the registration details and make and model you have won and shop around. You can literally save hundreds of pounds whilst getting good quality cover tailored to your needs, especially if you use the internet and visit the many insurance company websites. But do read the terms and conditions carefully, you may have to buy the recommended cover as part of the condition of the prize. Swallow this loss up if this is the case and profit from the new one. You can cancel this insurance after your first year.
This does sound tight when a promoter has given you a free vehicle but when you receive it often the petrol tank is empty! So do not drive straight to a friend or relative to show off - visit a petrol station first.
You will probably be responsible for maintenance. It is now yours to own and thus your responsibility. So do budget for servicing though some prizes offer this for up to the first three years to take you to the MOT period.
Do consider joining a breakdown recovery company like the AA, Green Flag or the RAC - even brand new vehicles break down. Though this may be provided in your prize. Do not be afraid to ask the promoter who will want you to enjoy your prize and not have any motoring worries.
You may have to travel to collect it, especially from internet or national newspapers contests. Though some may offer to pay your travel expenses or deliver it to your local network showroom such as your local Renault, Ford, Vauxhall or Citroen garage.
The last disadvantage is the publicity. You are being given something worth thousands of pounds and the promoters will want to promote their generosity so that people think favourably of their brand. Publicity conditions will usually be described in the terms. Generally it involves going to a champagne reception (please don't drink alcohol if you are about to drive off your prize, so take a friend or relative who can either drive or enjoy the free drinks!), having a few photographs taken and talking to the press and reporters. You will have to agree to your name, town and photo appearing in any publicity material. So make sure you wear your best clothes and a smile!
Do not let all this put you off. The prize value far outweighs any disadvantages and real people do win these.
Other pages of interest are our Enter Competitions advice page, Holiday Competitions, Get Paid To Advertise On Your Vehicle article and Test Drive section.
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