What if There is No, No Purchase Entry Option?

Air Miles Giveaway

I was in my local the grocery store and saw the above sign. I stood on my tiptoes read the fine print. Not wanting to purchase 4 products I didn’t need at the moment, I went to Customer Service. I asked for a copy of The Official Rules as outlined. I was handed the weekly flyer as they stated they didn’t get any rules.

Air Miles Giveaway

This was all that was written on the flyer. The exact same text as on the display signage.

The Fine Print

NO PURCHASE NECESSARY. Open to legal residents of Ontario who have reached the age of majority on the date they enter the contest. Enrollment in the Air Miles Reward Program is required. To enter the contest with a purchase, swipe your AIR MILES card at the checkout at the time of purchase of any 4 participating products at any of the participating Foodland, Sobey’s or Sobey’s Urban Fresh stores. The Contest runs from May 5, 2017 and ends on June 1, 2017. There is 1 grand prize to be won. The grand prize consists of 500,000 AIR MILES Reward Miles. There are 6 secondary prizes to be won. The secondary prizes consist of 6 individual prizes of 50,000 Air Miles Reward Miles each. These will be split evenly at 3 prizes per Sobey’s and 3 prizes per Foodland banner respectively. The prizes have no equivalent cash value, are non-transferable and no substitutions be made. The approximate retail value of AIR MILES Reward Miles depends on the chosen method of redemption and available reward options at the time of redemption. Selected entrants must correctly answer a skill testing question. Odds of winning depend on the number of eligible entries received during the contest period. List of participating products and full contest rules available at participating stores. Trademarks of AIR MILES International Trading B.V. Used under license by LoyaltyOne, Co. and Sobeys Capital Incorporated.

The Official Rules

I did a few Google searches and could not locate a set of rules online. My mistake was dropping the ball and not contacting the sponsor earlier to get a copy of The Official Rules sent to me. I did ask a colleague who is a Canadian promotional lawyer. His legal info, not legal advice, reply was, and I am paraphrasing … all rules generally need an alternative means of entry as listed in the Criminal Code … the whole AMOE discussion can be a little tricky depending on the facts, but yes, generally sponsors include one to be safe

In the end I didn’t enter. Next time I will take immediate No Purchase action. The odds on a purchase contest with virtually no means of finding the official rules would be fantastic.

What do you do when you find you can’t legally enter?

2017-06-25T18:33:50+00:00June 1st, 2017|Contesting, Sweepstaking|2 Comments

About the Author:

Carolyn Wilman (aka @ContestQueen) is a Digital Marketing Strategist and Sweepstakes Specialist. Carolyn teaches others how to Find, Organize, Enter and Win giveaways along with working with companies to create, and viral market, winning promotions maximizing ROI and loyal customers.


  1. Christina Zawadiwsky June 26, 2017 at 5:29 pm - Reply

    What do you mean – that by taking No Purchase action, you would enter the contest?

  2. Kathy July 4, 2018 at 7:50 pm - Reply

    In my experience, with these kinds of Sobeys contests, you just ask the cashier to swipe your Air Miles card without buying anything, and you’re good to go. I think the entry is even noted on your receipt.

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