Comping is the process of entering multiple competitions with the aim of winning money or other prizes. It can be a fun way of potentially winning something, but you should be clued up on the ins and outs before you enter anything.
Who can get into comping?
Anybody can get into comping. But there’ll be terms and conditions for every competition. These could be things such as age or location restrictions. Other barriers could be that you must not be associated with the company running the competition. Always read the fine print to save wasting your time if you’re not eligible.
How much time does it take?
As much time as you’re willing to invest. You could spend an hour entering competitions while you watch television - some people might spend more than that, scouring the internet for opportunities. It’s up to you how much time you spend comping but make sure that it doesn’t take over your life.
Is comping free?
If you only enter free competitions, it doesn’t have to cost you a penny. Stick to online competitions and you won’t need to pay the price of a stamp either. You should also bear in mind that if you enter via phone or text message, there’ll usually be a fee involved. So, make sure you’re aware of this before you enter. Ideally, you should avoid spending money on competitions because you’ll have to subtract entry fees from any winnings.
Some competitions can be categorised as ‘purchase necessary' . For example, if you buy a packet of crisps to enter a competition, you’d need to show proof of purchase to claim your prize. If you would have made that purchase anyway, then it might be worth entering the competition.
How often will you win?
Some people might win prizes after entering just a few competitions. Others may never win anything despite regularly entering lots of competitions. When it comes to comping, it’s the luck of the draw and nothing is guaranteed.
What can you win?
It depends on the competition you enter. You could win anything from money and holidays, to food vouchers and concert tickets. You could win dog food or a year’s supply of toilet paper.
What kind of competitions are there?
Some competitions are quick and easy. You may simply have to like a post on Instagram or Facebook, share a tweet on Twitter, or just fill in a form with your details.
Others might be more time-consuming, requiring you to submit a drawing or a short story. Weigh up whether the potential prize is worth the effort (and possibly money) involved.
How do you find competitions?
You can find competitions in magazines, newspapers, or on TV. You can often track down giveaways or competitions on social media by searching the hashtag ‘competition time’, ‘competition’ or ‘win’. Forums are another place where compers can share any competitions they find. Some forums you can trust include:
Another website dedicated to comping is SuperLucky Me which sources competitions, as well as providing safety tips and comping advice.
Is it safe?
Always read the terms and conditions for every competition before you enter. If you’re entering via your mobile or landline then be sure to check if there’s a cost involved. Protect your personal information - make sure that you tick (or untick) the boxes to deny the sharing of your data.
If you’re not familiar with the company or organisation that’s holding the competition, then do a bit of research beforehand. You can check to see if they’re registered on the Companies House site, which is the Government register of UK firms. This way you can be sure they’re legitimate. If you can’t find any evidence of this company existing or previous competition winners, then it’s better to skip it.
If you're entering a competition on Facebook, try to clue yourself up about how to spot scams first.
Comping best practices
Here’s a few top tips for comping:
- Set up a new email address for competition entries to cut down on spam in your main email inbox
- Keep track of the competitions you enter (some have entry limits)
- Only enter competitions where you want to win the prize - don’t waste time trying to win cat food if you don’t have a cat
- Never give out your bank details
- Be careful when clicking on links - know how to look out for phishing scams
Is comping worth it?
If you’re responsible and follow the guidelines above, then comping can be a fun way to pass a few hours with the chance of winning some treats. It could become dangerous if you view it as anything but a hobby. Ensure you keep your details safe, spending to a minimum and fingers crossed for some wins.
Disclaimer: All information and links are correct at the time of publishing.