Taupo's contest shopper hits the jackpot
July 15, 2002
Taupo has its $100,000 Kachingo! winner.
She is Kirsty Park, an incurable enterer of consumer competitions. And a couple of weeks ago she struck the jackpot.
If the Taupo mother of two is shopping and it's a choice between an item on promotion and one that's not, every time she'll go for the product that gets her into a competition.
So when Kirsty visited Woolworths in Taupo on Tuesday June 25 to pick up a few things, the Fresh 'n Fruity yoghurt on Kachingo! promotion caught her eye.
"I'd called in only to get some buns for the boys' lunches and some ricotta cheese for that night's cannelloni," Kirsty says.
"I was on my way out when I saw the Fresh 'n Fruity and we eat lots of yoghurt so I thought I'd stock up seeing it was on Kachingo! promotion."
Cut to the Wairakei International Golf Course at 8am on Tuesday July 2 where Kirsty's husband Kevin is manager and she helps out part time in the kitchen.
"When I arrived at work some of the girls had already turned on the radio and the breakfast announcer was talking about a local who had won a big Kachingo! prize.
"I actually didn't hear the amount but the DJ went on to talk about when the person had shopped and she had spent $8.21 and it included Fresh 'n Fruity yoghurt. I said to the girls 'I bought yoghurt at Woolworths that day'."
'The girls' recommended in no uncertain terms that Kirsty should find her Kachingo! ticket right then and there and check the numbers.
"So I went out to the car and brought back my purse and from amongst the rubbish I retrieved my receipt and the Kachingo! ticket."
By this time the kitchen at Wairakei International Golf Course was in a high state of excitement.
"When we looked at the total amount spent on the Woolworths receipt and saw it was $8.21 the place erupted with screams," Kirsty says.
The unknown factor at that stage was the amount of the win.
"So I rang Kachingo! in Auckland and Jessica confirmed it was a winning ticket and I said 'how much, a thousand dollars?' and she said 'no, one hundred thousand dollars'.
"I hung up in a daze and said to the girls 'it's $100,000'. Well, you can imagine the screaming and jumping up and down that went on then."
Next step was to inform husband Kevin who happened to be on his day off.
"He thought all the girls at work had gone mad and were trying to wind him up. All he said was 'Whatever......good joke, I've got to go, I've got beds to make' . and hung up."
The Park family has agreed the money will be used to totally pay off the home mortgage. The only treat so far has been a new computer game each for Elliot (6) and Taylor (12).
"Kevin has always said he wanted to pay off the mortgage by the time he's 40 and he's 40 in November," Kirsty says. "He told me just the other day he didn't think we'd be able to do it by then and I told him never mind, a few more years won't matter.
"Paying off our mortgage is the best investment we could ever hope to make and, well, now we can do it."
Because it is school holidays the family treated itself to a trip to Auckland and a night in a "flash hotel" after which they picked up their big Kachingo! cheque and headed home.
Kirsty's determined efforts at winning consumer competitions have been rewarded previously only with a bunch of small prizes and a trailer-load of firewood.
"But winning cash - especially this much - is just the best. You can do what you want with cash."
And has she got any advice for shoppers? "Just keep checking your Kachingo! tickets; that's all I can say."
It's easy to check whether or not you have a winning ticket. Just take it to any Kachingo! partner store, or go online at www.kachingo.co.nz.
Prizes of $1,000 or more can be claimed from Global Online Promotions by telephoning 0-9-309 4055. Smaller prizes can be collected in-store.
Since October 15 when Woolworths joined the Kachingo! programme, shoppers at the supermarket chain have been issued with winning tickets to the value of more than $3.2 million.
This follows the $1 million big cash Easter Draw won by a Woolworths Northcote shopper on the North Shore in Auckland. That prize has already been claimed. The total also includes six $100,000 prize winning tickets since Kachingo! introduced the weekly format at the beginning of April.
Kachingo! is a customer rewards programme invented in New Zealand. It is the only one to give shoppers cash rewards just for shopping at any store within the Kachingo! village of partners. The village consists of BP, Super Liquor and Woolworths, Big Fresh and Price Chopper supermarkets. Since the programme's launch, Kachingo! partners have issued more than 146,000 winning game-line tickets worth more than $6.7 million.
Issued for Kachingo! by Pead PR