How To: Make Cash Raffle Alternatives
Keep payout money from walking out of the room by trading dollars for ‘auction bucks’
By Jared Wold, Regional Director for Western Montana and Northern Idaho
Are you watching money disappear at your events? Does your chapter do a 50/50 raffle or a raffle where cash is given to the winner?
How often does that money walk out of the room at the end of the night? For many chapters, that answer is: too often.
“Auction bucks” have been a good answer for several chapters that want to use cash value as a prize but don’t want to watch the money take a hike. Similar to play money or a gift card, an auction buck is a simple certificate that can be used as payment when the night’s games and raffles are finished.
How It Works
Instead of cash, the winner receives a piece of paper stating how much they’ve won and how to redeem the value. That person may purchase items in the live or silent auctions at that night’s banquet and deduct the certificate’s value from the total they owe at the end of the night. Anything more than the certificate’s value must be paid by the buyer and if the buyer didn’t spend the full amount of the certificate, anything left is given back to RMEF.
For example, Fred wins the auctions buck raffle and receives a $500 auction bucks certificate. Fred then buys three items in the live auction and two items in the silent auction that total $1,000. When Fred pays at the end of the night, he presents the certificate and will only have to pay the remaining $500.
Let’s say instead that Fred only buys one item in the live auction for $450. When Fred presents the certificate for the item, the remaining $50 that he did not spend is forfeited to RMEF.
One of the benefits of having auction bucks in the crowd is that a person holding them makes extra bids before spending the allotted amount in the certificate. The added money generates more bids and therefore more money for the live auction, while also being a fun prize that attendees want to win.
Next time you look at doing a cash prize for a raffle or 50/50 raffle, consider awarding auction bucks rather than cash and watch your winning payouts take on new life before the green fades into the black.