This month's contest watch is all about indulging. Whether it's a culinary trip through Italy, a $1,500 shopping spree, or sports fanaticism, leave the moderation at home.
Trip for Two to Italy, DK Books
Enter now through February 28
To celebrate DK’s inspirational new book, Where to Go When: Italy ($40, Oct ’10), DK Eyewitness Travel is giving foodies the chance to win a trip to Italy valued at $4770. The lucky winner and a friend will choose from more than 40 Epiculinary tours. To enter to win, simply sign up to receive the traveldk.com e-newsletter or visit their website.
With school in session and the autumn holidays just around the corner, this month’s Contest Watch is all about escaping obligation. Ikea wants you to take a whole year off to pursue philanthropic work, but for those just looking to avoid a mother-in-law, Turks + Caicos has a better alternative to Thanksgiving dinner—the islands' Conch Festival!
So start entering—before you get seated at the kid’s table.
Ikea’s Life Improvement Sabbatical Contest
Now – November 8th
The Swedish furniture company is giving one winner the opportunity to take a year off to pursue their passions (volunteering, starting a non-profit)—a prize worth $100,000. Entrants must submit their proposal to www.thelifeimprovementproject.com. Five finalists will be chosen by a panel of judges, and announced on December 13, 2010. The winner will be determined by public vote, and announced on January 31, 2011. The winner is not required to take a leave of absence from work but, come on, why wouldn’t you?
It’s mid-summer and the season’s blockbusters are out (or forthcoming). While we don’t have an Inception contest, Pixar hit, Toy Story 3 is giving away a Disney cruise and the much-anticipated Eat Pray Love inspires a 3-week vacation giveaway. This Contest Watch wants to make your movie dreams a reality.
STA Travel – Eat Pray Love Sweepstakes
Enter Now – August 27th
STA Travel, a student and budget travel operator, is giving away a 21-day trip to Italy, India, and Bali inspired by the novel Eat Pray Love by Elizabeth Gilbert. The movie adaptation starring Julia Roberts opens August 13th. To enter, simply sign up at http://eatpraylove.statravelpackages.com/win/. The grand prize includes all airfare, tours, and accommodations, movie tickets and a copy of the book, and Lonely Planet Travel guides.
Skyrocketing temperatures might have melted some travel companies’ brains! They’re giving away a $15,000 Nantucket vacation, a six-month trip around the world; a six-month New York City hotel stay and $5,000 in cash, plus oodles more. This Contest Watch is all about thinking B-I-G.
“Flip Out on Nantucket”, Nantucket Island Resorts, Nantucket, MA
Now – September 6, 2010
Need a reason to take a Nantucket vacation? How does a $15,000 getaway sound? This summer, Nantucket visitors who make a 1-minute video montage about their trip and submit it to www.nuntucketislandresorts.com/flip-out-nantucket-submission.php or email firstname.lastname@example.org might just win the return-trip of a lifetime. Video submissions will be reviewed by a panel of judges with the finalists put up to a public vote. The ultimate Nantucket itinerary includes a five-night stay at any Nantucket Island Resort property (including T+L favorites The Wauwinet and the White Elephant), dinner for two at Brant Point Grill and Topper’s, two hour-long massages at both the White Elephant and the Spa by the Sea, Nantucket Harbor Cruise, and more. Flip out indeed.
Saturday is National Train Day and what better way to celebrate than to win some free train travel? Not in the mood to get on board—then jet away with your betrothed for a eco-friendly destination wedding in the Cook Islands. And, if
you’ve already done the love and marriage thing, the least you can do is get some peace and quiet by sending your teen off to Oxford for the summer. There’s something for everyone in this edition of ContestWatch.
Parents and kids alike will appreciate this roundup of spring contests. Now if only they could agree on appropriate clothes to pack.
Sceptre Tours “Luxurious Ireland Vacation Giveaway”
Win a 6-night 3-city Irish vacation with airfare and rental car (Mercedes 200 E series) from Sceptre Tours. Enter here to be eligible. Careful, the contest automatically signs you for to receive the Sceptre newsletter but for 2-nights each at Adare Manor, Ashford Castle, and the Ritz-Carlton Powerscourt, we think it’s worth it.
Seems like everyone’s midwinter morale is down. What better way to usher in spring (maybe prematurely) than with the promise of free getaways ? Here, a compilation of this month’s contests, enter now—the hot toddy can wait.
Frommer’s “Cover Photo Contest”
In honor of the reputable guide series' new full-color editions (launched in September 2009), Frommer’s is giving away $5,000 and the opportunity to have a photo featured on the cover of one of their forthcoming guidebooks.
From now through March 31st, contestants can visit www.frommers.com/go/photocontest to enter and upload their best travel photos. A panel of travel and photography experts will judge the entries. Four runners-up will receive guide books and Lug travel accessories worth $300. The winner is responsible for all taxes associated with prizes.
Netherlands Board of Tourism “Just Be in Holland” Contest
As part of a new Holland marketing campaign, the Netherlands Board of Tourism unveiled a fulled wrapped subway train (the shuttle from Times Square to Grand Central Station) in New York City and a cool contest to boot.
Have the short cold days got you down? These sizzling contests may just sweep you away.
Yapta’s “9 Months of Paradise by Marriott Sweepstakes”
Since June, Yapta has been giving away a trip a month. There’s one more month left and February’s prize is a 5-night, 6-day hotel stay at the Frenchman’s Reef & Morning Star Marriott Beach Resort in St. Thomas. To enter, use Yapta.com's flight tracker to monitor the price of a flight; each flight counts as an entry into the drawing (maximum 25 per person). The drawing is Februay 28th, so go ahead and track spring break plans—it might end up being free! Other prizes include Bose headphones and Starbucks cards—both certain to help with the winter crankies.
Tis the season for toys and presents, but what about getting your 2010 travel calendar in line? These three contests might make for one heck of a New Year.
Ultimate Fiji Adventurer
Now – January 1st
Make your New Year’s resolution to be more adventurous. Tourism Fiji has launched a video contest to give away a pair of roundtrip tickets
to Fiji on Air Pacific (from Los Angeles) and seven nights—with
meals—at Sonaisali Island Resort. Contestants must submit a 2-3 minute video explaining why they are an Ultimate Fiji Adventurer at www.fijime.tv/videocontest.
After entries close on January 1st, it’s up to the public to vote on
their favorite submission. We could not confirm at publilcation time,
but contestants shoudle expect to pay taxes and fees.
Excuse my flurry of posts but there has been a huge surge of late-breaking contests that I just had to share. All you need to do is enter:
Larkspur Hotels "I Need a Vacation Because!" Contest (closes Nov. 17)
Facebook fans of the Larkspur Hotels page can enter to win a two-night getaway to one of the Larkspur
Collections’ eight hotels (one winner per hotel) in
California and Oregon. Contestants must post why they need a
vacation in 50 words or less. Entries will be judged on originality,
creativity, humor, and substance, and from what I’ve seen on the Facebook page,
TravelandLeisure.com’s savvy and creative readers have a pretty good
shot. The prize includes $150 voucher for Southwest Airlines and a $100
to the hotel restaurant. Winners do not have to cover taxes or fees.
Visit www.facebook.com/larkspurhotels to enter.