Tuesday, July 29, 2008

Purely Creative Scratchcards

The scratchcards keep falling out of the newspapers, and I still keep getting hits for this post, so here's a link to an old Guardian story about the cruises you can win.

Mrs Staveacre's trip of a lifetime goes something like this. She must make her own way from Somerset to Glasgow, fly from there to Toronto, wait four hours, take a flight to New York, wait 17 hours at La Guardia airport, make her own way to the city and embark on an unnamed ship for a cruise, destination unknown, before returning by the same route a week later. Mr Staveacre is to fly from Bristol to Newark, a week earlier, catch a connecting flight to Baltimore and from there to Miami where he must wait 14 hours and then get himself to an unspecified dock for a boat to a mystery destination. "Tempting, isn't it?" he says. Furthermore, they must each pay £599 if, having accepted this alluring package, they decide to cancel, and yet Promo Travel and Let's Go, travel companies that organise the trip on behalf of Creative, can withdraw at any time ...

"The people behind this must have spent days working out this elaborate scheme to make the 'free' cruise so unappealing that only those desperate for adventure will take it up," says Staveacre. "Since this was the only prize offered by the competition, their profit margin must be terrific - thousands of £6 premium-rate phone calls and hardly any prizes to pay for."