Travel agency Sky Breaks is certainly living up to their name this week by breaking the CAP Code with a prize promotion they ran back in August 2022 for the chance to win “7 nights free holiday accommodation.”

The winner of said prize was, understandably, not too happy when he was told he needed to pay a fee to claim his prize and queried with the ASA whether this was acceptable.

When approached by the ASA, Sky Breaks said they ran a draw that took place every week or two, which resulted in a prize winner who didn’t have to pay anything towards their prize, and multiple runners-up, who were offered an option of taking a week of accommodation but needed to pay an administration fee of £59, on a non-obligatory purchase basis.

Unsurprisingly this ruling was upheld; the CAP Code clearly states that all marketing communications referring to promotions must communicate all applicable significant conditions or information where the omission of such conditions or information is likely to mislead.

The ad for the promotion was found on and included no information on any runner-up prizes, let alone the very significant condition of needing to pay a fee to claim the prize.

Furthermore, the CAP Code also states that promotors mustn’t falsely claim or imply that someone has already won if that person needed to incur a cost to claim the prize.

The ASA understood that whilst the website did not make mention of runner-up prizes, when Sky Breaks contacted the relevant individuals, they were referred to as runner-up prize winners. Due to the cost involved with claiming the prize, this also resulted in a breach of the CAP Code.

So remember, if you want to run a promotion you need to make sure you're including all significant conditions in your marketing materials and not referring to anyone as a winner if they need to incur a cost to claim their prize.