PCH asks: Do you know the differences between Sweepstakes, Lotteries and Contests?

It’s a well known fact: Publishers Clearing House makes millionaires, and multi-millionaires, too! PCH sweepstakes have the power to forever change the lives of those who win. Have you ever dreamed of winning millions of dollars? Do you enter Publishers Clearing House giveaways? Ever wondered what the differences are between sweepstakes, lotteries and contests? No need to be embarrassed if you don’t know as I ‘m going to explain right now.

1) Sweepstakes:  In the USA, sweepstakes are advertisements or promotional devices by which prizes (items of value) are awarded to participating consumers by chance, with no purchase, consideration or entry fee required to enter or win. The Publishers Clearing House Sweepstakes Giveaway No. 1400 where there’s a chance to win $10 Million is a perfect example. Go to pch.com right now and enter for a chance to win. It’s an outstanding opportunity to become a multi-millionaire!

For our neighbors up north:  Canadian sweepstakes law requires that the third component of chance be removed. Sponsors cannot use pure luck in determining who wins a sweepstakes. There must be at least some level of skill involved. Only those who at least pass a skill testing question, for example, are eligible to win prizes.

2) Lottery:  This is a promotional device containing all three elements – prize, chance and consideration (a purchase or fee). Prizes (items of value) are awarded to members of the public by chance, but require some form of payment or purchase (consideration) to participate. Buying a lottery ticket from the state you reside in (if your state has a lottery) is a good example.

3) Contests:  Skill contests differ from sweepstakes offers because in a skill contest, the winner is determined by – you guessed it – skill, not chance. Plus, an entry fee or purchase may be required. For example, in a skill contest you may have to write an essay or solve a puzzle or simply answer a question correctly. Your skill or knowledge is what wins the contest – not chance.

You can find even more information on info.pch.com – simply click on “Sweepstakes Information,” then click “General Sweepstakes Information” and you’ll find “PCH’s Consumer Guide to Sweepstakes and Lotteries.” There’s a huge amount of valuable information there for you. So after you’ve entered one of the Publishers Clearing House giveaways, take a look around the PCH information center. You’ll learn a lot!

Remember to leave your comments below and visit us on the PCH Fan page on Facebook. We always love hearing from you!


Leslie Jaye

PCH Creative

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Showing 15 Comments
Parish Mack said...

The difference between the two is that sweepstakes; you don’t have to pay any money all you do is just put in your entry and hope you win (consistency and persistence). The lottery on the other hand, you have to pay but not a lot(I.e straight box) and try to pick the winning numbers (you might win some money or just another ticket). Overall, they follow by the same guidelines. I just stick to the sweepstakes though(PCH all day!) lol either way you might win! All I know and not to get off subject but I am going to win this PCH $5000 a week for life! I’m making sure I do everything that needs to be done and just ask the lord to meet me half way on this (I have a faith )because all the stuff I been through, a blessing is bound to come and this is my blessing! :)

Parish Mack said...

And to add to that contests (I.e pie eating contest)who ever does what the best, you win something.

kristina bryson said...

its fun to win! but the sweepstakes and lotteries and other dont tell you how much taxes they pull that is what sucks but in the end its nice to win !!!!!!!!

    PCH Customer Service said...

    Hello Kristina,

    Taxes on winnings are the responsibility of the winner. The rate that the winner is taxed depends on their financial status as well as their state taxes.

    Addison @ PCH

Lauralee Hensley said...

I’ve known the differences from a very young age because my mom explained it to me.
I think the problem with online contests now a days is that many of them rely on the public to vote for the winner, and then it becomes a popularity contest, not necessarily the best for example recipe, actually winning. I wish the sponsors would have their own teams to determine the winners, rather than have the public (friend of the people entering) loading the votes. I see people on their blogs begging for votes in contests, and yes unfortunately I did once when I wrote a children’s story. I didn’t win, but I believe there was some dishonesty by the sponsor involved. It seems some of the stories and there votes were lost, but others weren’t.
I used to enter a recipe contest every year, by a well known grocery manufacturer, until they started the public doing the voting, instead of them having a team of professionals doing the judging.
I think PCH runs their sweepstakes and contests professionally. Thank You.

Parish Mack said...

Oh lol I thought u guys were asking us what was the difference. I didn’t read all of it just the beginning. I can’t wait to win pch! I just know I wil!l

Snezana Hristov said...

Sweepstakes or Lottery its all Winnings. Hope I win PCH $5000.00 or $1000.00 per Week for Life its my hope. Good Luck to all PCH Players.

Eileen Kennedy said...

I am entering again, twenty two yrs now.i dream, eat, sleep, play, and yes pray for this chance to win the big contest of 5000 a week. i wouldn’t have to beg businesses for a job any more and i cuold help my family and friends before we all die. pay off debts and go on a real family vac. man my dream has got to come true aug312011. please computer and all of your electronic parts.

robyn liscinsky said...

i pray that some of u who wanted so badly to win in 2011 had some kind of award for yr asking our Lord to help u in yr times of need…i pray too for winning and now that i have read some others who r struggling so hard…i pray for u too…if i win, i promise to put a large part of it to good use, if i dont win, i really hope someone who needs it the most will get their dream and prayers answered

Jimmie League said...

i am hoping that i will win the contest. I was thinking about taking early retirement but i can’t afford to now. it would be nice to be able to pay my bills all once instead of worry from one week to the next if i would have enough to cover my bills. my biggest bill is my home, it would be nice to be able to pay it off. that would be a weight lifted off me


PCH This name has always make me happy all the wanderfull members are friendly this are people i will never want to forget. They have taught me a lot of thing’s that i dont know before.This people are God’s people.For he shall deliver the needy when he crieth:the poor also,and him that hath no helper.He shall spare the and needy, and shall save the souls of the needy. Psalm 72:12-13 may God be good them, may God to them for ever amd ever Amen!

Robert Moore said...

It’s all a RIPOFF, plain and simple. When will people learn that NOTHING in life is ‘free’, and if it IS ‘free’, it’s likely no good, illegal, wrong, fake or evil. WAKE UP, IDIOTS! What kind of company can afford to ‘give’ (read, THROW AWAY) a million or more dollars? NONE! The gov’t. will take 70% of the winnings anyway; anything over $250,000 gets hit at the 70% taxation level…this despite the gov’t. not having done anything at all to earn or acquire one penny of those ‘free’ winnings. The money should ALL be tax-free.

Robert Moore said...

PCH makes its loads of money by dishonestly LURING people into thinking they can WIN money IF they SUBSCRIBE and COMMIT to a bunch of magazines they neither want nor need…all in the hopes that they just ‘might’ win something…(but they WON’T)! It’s all pure hogwash and LIES!
PCH got BUSTED and fined for its clearly dishonest practices some time ago. Buyer BEWARE!

Stephen Browning said...

When I say “I Need to win”, is exactily what I need. A crook about a year ago sold me a car that he said was perfest. I have driven that car about 5 different days. I know that it is my fault for taking his word for the car. I have yet to drive that car this year, and I have to walk everywhere to purchase what I need, I am 71 years old, with a lot of health problems. I am truing to survive on Social Security. All of that is why I NEED to win.