There are more giveaways out there than anyone has time to enter, so it makes sense to pick and choose the best sweepstakes to add to your daily entry list. But how can you guesstimate the odds so you know which ones are more likely to be in your favor?
It's usually not possible to know your exact odds. However, the best sweepstakes to enter share some common factors:
- There are fewer other entries to compete against.
- There are ways for you to get more entries that other people might not use.
- More prizes are being given away, so there are more winners.
Next, you'll take a deeper look at each one.
The Best Sweepstakes Have Fewer Competing Entries
Some sweepstakes have an astonishingly low number of entries. When you have a 1 in 50 chance of winning as opposed to a 1 in 50,000, your odds are obviously much better. So how can you tell which sweepstakes have a lower-than-average number of entries?
While it's usually not possible to know exactly how many entries a sponsor has received, you can make a guess based on the sweepstakes rules. For example, sweepstakes that are void in Florida automatically rule out around 21,477,737 residents of that state, according to the 2019 population estimate.
The more states that are prohibited, the higher your chances rise (assuming, of course, that you are not a resident of those states!). Local sweepstakes that are only open to your specific area are likely to have good odds of winning.
Similarly, sweepstakes that are only open to men rule out roughly 53% of your competition, since slightly more men than women tend to enter sweepstakes.
In general, some signs that sweepstakes will have fewer entrants include:
- Entry is restricted on the basis of the entrants' state of residence, age, gender, etc.
- The giveaway is annoying to enter — it has a long survey, for example, or requires multi-page registration. Not everyone will bother jumping through hoops to enter.
- Some element of skill is required to enter. Fewer people even attempt to enter video, writing, photography, or poetry contests. (See 5 Reasons to Enter Contests)
- The prizes are attractive only to a certain subset of people - for example, a gift certificate to a local restaurant or a high-tech gadget that only engineers will understand or crave.
You Have Better Odds When You Can Enter More Often
If you're looking for the best sweepstakes odds, consider focusing on giveaways where you can get more entries than other people. For example, most people don't really enter daily sweepstakes every single day. If you are diligent about entering daily, you will have better than average odds.
Some ways that you can frequently get more entries into giveaways include:
- Entering the maximum number of times specified in the rules.
- Referring friends for extra entries, when available.
- Keeping your eyes open for other chances to get extra entries that the sponsor may offer. helps with this.
For the last suggestion, read the rules to see what options you have. Some giveaways offer extra entries for watching an advertisement, liking a Facebook page, leaving a comment on a blog post, and much more.
Sweepstakes Odds Rise When There Are More Prizes to Win
The best sweepstakes to enter for really high chances of winning offer a lot of prizes. It's obvious when you think about it — sweepstakes that are giving away 100 prizes have 100 times the odds of winning compared to the exact same giveaway that is offering just one prize.
Even if the prizes have a lower value, the motivation that comes with winning makes them worth entering. Little prizes that arrive frequently keep you energized to enter every day.
- Instant Win Sweepstakes often give away multiple prizes.
- Find sweepstakes with multiple winners in the Lots of Prizes sweepstakes list.
Sweepstakes with Especially Poor Odds
If you consider the three factors that indicate a giveaway with better odds, you'll realize that some sweepstakes are very difficult to win.
If the prize is good enough it might be worth the long shot (the HGTV Dream Home Giveaway is a good example!), but it's generally a better bet to focus your efforts elsewhere.
Some sweepstakes you might not want to spend too much time entering include:
- Creative Presentations.
- Sweepstakes that are advertised across the nation.
- Sweepstakes with few prizes awarded.
- Giveaways with a very long entry period.
- Contests with unlimited entries.
- Prizes that are not guaranteed to be awarded.
- Sweepstakes with a huge following, like the Wheel of Fortune Spin ID sweeps.
- Sweepstakes with enormous prizes, like Publishers Clearing House's SuperPrize.
By comparing these three aspects of each giveaway, you can decide which sweepstakes you can actually win and focus your energy on winning more prizes.