Being in Japan, I hear about these contests late – had I been living in the US, I would have gotten myself a brand new Chrysler Crossfire for less $10,000 – that is one of the prizes being given away in the Hershey’s Wrappercash contest. This contest began February 15 and you receive points from wrappers of specially marked Hershey’s candy – those points can be used to bid on auction that will be held on eBay beginning May 15.
The key to getting the car (or any of the other prizes top prizes) for much less than they are worth would have been heading out to the store beginning February 15 and purchasing the maximum allowed entries per day (36) from day #1. Wrappers are worth 2 or 3 points depending on the product – I would have only purchase the products that give 3 points (since their is a limit to the number of entries you can put in a day, entering 2 point products would have given me less than my competitors thus ensuring a loss – if I always input codes for 3 points, nobody could have more than me if I began from day one).
I would have made the maximum number of entries each and every day and simply waited until the Chrysler Crossfire was put up for auction. (While I couldn’t find a list of the actual prizes that will be auctioned off, this usatoday.com article implies there will be at least one Chrysler Crossfire put up for auction – “Collect enough points and you can get into the fray for Chrysler Crossfire cars, techno-gadgets and mountain bikes. Jacobs predicts, “Someone is going to win a sports car for a pretty low number of wrappers.”)
When the car goes up for auction, this is how I would have won it – once the auction starts, I wouldn’t bid, but keep religiously entering my codes each day. On the day the auction is going to end, I would input that day’s code numbers at midnight and once all were entered, quickly bid all my points points. Due to the way the eBay system works, if you’re the first to enter the max amount, nobody can beat you even if they bid the same amount. Since I started to collect the points from day one, nobody could have more than me ensuring a win of the car.
I did a quick online search shows that you can buy the 3 point Hershey candy for under $1 each. The auctions run from February 15 – October 31 – assuming that the car ends on the very last day, that is 258 days the contest will run. Multiply that by the 36 entries allowed per day and you have yourself a brand new car for less than $9288.
Of course, there would be some risk involved, like another person having the same plan, or something happening where I couldn’t enter in all the codes one day. Still, if something like that happened, I could go for something else or sell the points on eBay…which comes to the final point of this post.
You can get your favorite Hershey candy for free and maybe earn a bit in the process. I’ve written about hidden grocery discounts and this is a perfect example of one. It seems that these Hershey points are selling for about $1.00 per wrapper for the 2 point wrappers. These can be purchased for well under a dollar – I assume the three point wrappers would sell for even more of a premium and that once the contest starts that candy wrapper prices will spike as people scramble for points to bid on items they want. It seems to me that it would be very easy to get as much Hershey chocolate as you want at no cost but your time by purchasing the candy and selling the wrappers to others who will be bidding – and if you spend time at it to get the chocolate at a discount, you could come away with a nice profit too. If only I were in the US….