Or possibly not….what to do when comping goes wrong! I love this hobby and am not one to usually even mention this – but sometimes, prizes don’t arrive and compers need to know what to do. And I’ve had a few of you contact me recently to ask advice about this exact thing. It’s such a wonderful feeling when you get that winning email, phone call or social media notification and you know the drill….you’ve won and you’re waiting for your prize to turn up…and waiting… and waiting…
Most promoters will attempt to deliver your prize within 30 days of winning or of you claiming your prize, whichever is later and some will notify you of how long to allow for receipt. A lot of magazine wins often take longer than this and when I’ve won with them in the past I’ve been told to allow up to 6 weeks. Others are exceptionally good and it’s with you before you know it!
However, if your prize doesn’t arrive then I would suggest firstly contacting the company by email and just politely asking when you should be receiving your win. If this brings you no joy then try calling – most companies display a contact number on their web page. If you were notified of the win via a third party (a magazine or similar) then it may just be crossed wires and lack of communication. I would give them a small amount of time to respond and then if you are still having issues maybe a little nudge on their social media page might do the trick – no company wants negativity on a public platform. If this still doesn’t give you a positive result then send another brief email outlining that if you do not receive a satisfactory outcome within 7 days you will contact the ASA* (contact details below).
On receipt of your prize if it isn’t what was stated then what do you do? It’s handy if you have a link to the competition or you could google it to get the info. Then I would suggest contacting the promoter with the details asking why you haven’t received what was originally advertised. Often it could just be human error and they will apologise and rectify it. Most are more than happy to help. If however, you are unlucky then I would put something formal into writing and allow a short time for them to reply to your complaint; if you still get no joy then contact the ASA*.
Complaints about promotions should be forwarded to the Advertising Standards Agency (ASA). And all promotions are regulated by the Committee of Advertising Practise (CAP code) in the United Kingdom.
The websites you should keep a note of are; the ASA* at www.asa.org.uk and CAP www.cap.org.uk. You can complain directly to the ASA here , be sure to have as much information on your complaint as you can before you submit it.
I enter competitions on a really regular basis and only occasionally have I encountered any problems. I’m still massively ‘in love’ with my hobby!