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How To Use Sweepstakes Prizes for Holiday Presents

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Surprise your family by using sweepstakes wins as presents.

Surprise your family by using sweepstakes wins as presents.

© Getty Images / Photodisc
I love to give presents, and look forward to Christmas, birthdays, and other gift-giving holidays with glee. While I'd love to have an unlimited funds to lavish presents upon my friends and family members, in the real world I have to stick to a fairly tight budget.

This is one reason why I love sweepstakes so much around the holidays. Whether I'm looking for Christmas presents, Hanukkah gifts, or other holiday presents, sweepstakes prizes give me the chance to give great gifts to my loved ones that I couldn't otherwise afford. Here's how to do it.

Difficulty: Easy
Time Required: N/A

Here's How:

  1. Come Up with Present Ideas

    Think about presents that your friends and family members might enjoy receiving during the holiday season. It's best if you're not too specific, but are open to broad gift categories. Popular consumer electronics like iPods, game consoles, large screen TVs, and digital cameras are good choices, since many sweepstakes offer electronics prizes. Other popular gift ideas that are often used as sweepstakes prizes include perfume and makeup, toys, gift certificates, movie tickets, and DVDs.
  2. Concentrate on Entering Sweepstakes with Those Prizes

    If you enter just one or two sweepstakes, the chances of winning prizes to use as holiday presents is slim. The more sweepstakes you enter with prizes that you can give away as gifts, the more likely you are to win. Use the Master Sweepstakes List to locate sweepstakes that fall into the categories you want. Some sweepstakes lists that make great presents include:
  3. Set Aside a Location for Prizes to Use as Presents

    A shelf in your basement, an unused closet, or a sturdy plastic storage container can be used to store all of the prizes that you win and for which you don't have an immediate use. Even if it's not one of the presents you had in mind, it could make a great stocking stuffer or bonus gift. Or one of your friends could express an unexpected desire for just such a thing.
  4. When the Holiday Season Arrives... Check Your Prize Bin Before Buying

    If you've stored up your extra wins all year long, the chances are that your prize bin will have turned into a treasure chest of gifts that will delight your friends and family, without costing you a cent.
  5. Don't Forget to Spread the Cheer this Holiday Season

    After you've picked out your gifts from your prize bin, consider giving some of the remaining prizes to an appropriate charity. Not only could you make a real difference in someone's life this holiday season, but the donation can also offset any additional sweepstakes taxes from your wins. Talk about a win-win situation!

What You Need

  • A Plan for Holiday Gifts
  • A Place to Store Your Prize Wins
  • A Good Reason to Shower Your Loved Ones with Gifts

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