Q: I keep hearing bank promotions on the radio for “Chase picks up the tab.” I’m confused. Do I need a Chase Check card or will a credit card work? Are there any tips or strategies for winning?
A: Once again, Chase Picks Up The Tab is back. For starters, here’s a quick overview of how it works:
- Both qualifying Chase debit and credit cards can participate.
- In order to participate you must visit a local Chase branch and enroll your cards in the promotion (which is free to do).
- For enrolled debit card transactions, you must process the payment as “credit” instead of “debit” (so you don’t enter a PIN number). Otherwise the transaction won’t be eligible.
- What does the Chase Picks Up The Tab winner get? Reimbursement for their purchase, up to $200 max.
Unfortunately I have not been able to locate a current official page for the 2011 promotion – there is nothing on Chase.com and their pages displaying in search results are from ’08 and ’09. An older page did say that each cardholder is limited to a max of 10 entries per week, regardless of how many transactions they make. I don’t know if that is still a rule now, but if it was in the past it likely is now too.
What are the odds of winning?
One transaction every five minutes win. There are 12 winners per hour, 24 hours in a day… so 288 winners each day. Over the course of the Chase Picks Up The Tab promotion (which ends Dec. 31st) there will be a total of 17,280 winners.
Because the promotion requires manual enrollment at a local Chase bank, I’m sure only a fraction of eligible cardmembers actually enroll. So in that sense, if you’re enrolled your odds are probably improved by that aspect of the contest. Ultimately, the odds are unknown since we don’t know how many transactions Chase processes in a given day (and out of those, how many are enrolled). Either way, we can speculate that the number of people participating is in the millions or tens of millions!
The Secret To Winning?
My hairdresser said the craziest thing this week, that she believes there must be some kind of timing technique to win Chase Picks Up The Tab. Unfortunately, her belief is incorrect! The winners are selected automatically through a 100% random process. Therefore there is no “secret to winning” as my hairdresser believed. It’s just like playing the lottery… winning all comes down to luck!