Mission Competition

Top Money Saving and Comping Tips from a 21 year-old Student keen to make my limited budget stretch the semester!

Follow me on Twitter:@LaurieBeat and Instagram: @lornab22 or email any queries to

Join the Facebook group for more tips and a comping community!

Luck and love!

Tuesday, 25 October 2016

A Day in the Life of a Comper…Davina Mellon

Hey! I remember first hearing your name on a radio competition and tagging you in the Lucky Learners post hoping you'd get in touch in time! Luckily you won! Just another way comping is so cool! How did you stumble across it?

Well it all started when I was about 6 years old. For some reason I decided to enter a colouring competition from mini eggs. I don't think I won the main prize but i won a runners up prize of a cuddly parrot toy and a good few bags of mini eggs! A couple of months later I won a puzzle with that very toy at a local ice skating rink! Since then I've entered things here and there but I've really ramped it up in the last year or so.

Aw, that's so cute! You're a life-long comper then! What has been your best prize so far?

In money terms, the holiday to Florida which me and my husband won (I'm just back and it was fantastic despite being caught in hurricane Matthew!). However I won a holiday to Iceland which we visited in March. Iceland is somewhere I've ALWAYS wanted to visit due to my love for Scandinavia and volcanoes! So to be given the opportunity to visit for free in a gorgeous hotel was just fantastic.

The Icelandic Dream (and a potential future competition entry in my opinion!)

WOW! As a geography student, I'd love to go to Iceland! Do you prefer physical prizes or experiences like the holidays?

Definitely experiences. I find myself being a bit of a hoarder but I want to try to be as minimalist as possible. Also with comping you can experience things you just can't buy! Our trip to the south of France which included a butler, chef and PA was just magical, and being in the VIP area at Wimbledon was a dream come true! Saying that though, physical prizes you really need are fantastic too - such as the TV my husband won earlier this year.

VIPs at Wimbledon

Holidays seem to be your forté - tell me more about how you won them?

So far between me and my husband we have won 3 holidays, although one didn't include flights. The first one was to the south of France - you had to be the first person to apply and it was through with Stella Artois! The second was to Iceland. I entered a pic of me having an 'Aussie time' in a cold environment (or something along those lines) - with Aussie hair. The third was our trip to Florida which we entered a picture for. It was a promotion run by Heart radio station called faces for florida.The latest was the trip to the French alps with coors light where we had to take a pic with a pint of coors light and tweet it!

The winning 'Faces for Florida' entry

That's some big wins you've had and most of them creative photo entry! Are there any others you dream of winning?

Oooh! A trip to somewhere like Asia or South America as we haven't visited those places yet. Or New Zealand as we went there on our honeymoon and fell in love with the place! Then, as is on every compers wish list, a car! And lastly a kitchen/bathroom makeover as we've just bought our first house and we'd love to style it in our own way.

What do your friends and family think of this hobby? Have you managed to get any of them involved?

There's a mixture of responses I think. There's a lot of disbelief, jealousy but also some awe. Some people try a couple of times but lose heart when they don't win. The only person I've persuaded to properly take up the hobby is my husband but I don't think he had a choice haha!

What is your favourite method of entering competitions?

Pictures! It means less people are likely to enter, and I'm gradually building up a fancy dress collection ready for every eventuality haha!

Haha, they are so much fun to do too! Any tips for fellow compers?

Wherever you are, always keep an eye out for something you can take a picture of and use for a competition. For example a colourful graffiti wall, or a beautiful sunset etc. Then keep the best ones in a separate folder on your phone ready to go!

Any final comments about this amazing hobby?

There is nothing else like this hobby. You can have fun while being financially productive at the same time (when you win!) Me and my husband have been able to have a life this year and been on 3 holidays whilst also buying our first house. We only paid for one of them! We have saved so much money it's silly really. We always say that comping allows us to live like we're on twice the wage we are actually on! (Ok maybe not quite that much but still a lot more!)

I totally agree, it's a hobby like no other and I don't understand why more people don't do it! Thanks very much for taking part Davina! If you want to share your tips, get in touch with me on Twitter: @LaurieBeat or email:

Luck and Love,


Friday, 21 October 2016

Review and Giveaway: APPROVED FOODS


Recently I discovered an amazing website that is going to be saving me a fair whack of money. It is called Approved Food and they sell food at incredibly low prices.

How do they do this, I hear you ask?

Well, they buy food in bulk that is either nearing its best before, or is just past its best before date. Note though, that they don't sell anything that has a 'use buy' date, as foods generally should not be consumed beyond this date. However, the best before is simply an indication of when the product will still be within its best quality, and so is perfectly safe to eat.

To find out more about the brand, and the products that I bought, check out my video review below! Even better, enter the giveaway below via Gleam to win yourself a £25 voucher for Approved Food, and discover the amazing world of tasty food at affordable prices!

Disclaimer: I bought all products myself and these are all my own opinions. Prize provided by Approved Food.


Wednesday, 19 October 2016

An Outsiders View on Comping

You know that look. The look of 'you do what, sorry?' when you tell people that you're a 'comper'. The questions come thick and fast - how often do you enter, what do you win, how do you do it, How are you so lucky... etc.

People seem take one of two stances. They either seem to think that you're insane or want to get involved. I decided to get out there and ask some of my non-comping friends what they thought of the hobby. Boy, did I get some mixed responses....

The parents

Dad - I don't really understand it to be honest, I wouldn't like to sit on my computer all day and win things I don't need. It's nice to win things you want but I think it could quickly become a compulsive thing and therefore not as fun. However, I did enjoy the experience of going to the X-Factor live tour with you, and the amazing seats we got!

Mum - At first I thought why on earth are you doing that, but when I saw all the amazing things you have won I understand it more. It's a great way to get things that you couldn't otherwise afford, and to get people really unusual presents (such as X-factor example above). However, it seems to take up a lot of time and I would probably not do it myself. If there was a technique and I could look for specific things then I might give it a go. For someone who actually enjoys the whole process, it's worthwhile, but it's not worth the hassle just to win things if you hate doing it. It's a great way to put your competitive streak to good use. (Note to mum: there are techniques to find specific prizes, I shall teach you my ways....)

The boyfriend:

Well I've known compers before so I was aware it's a hobby that can lead to getting nice gifts and tickets for things. I think it can be quite time consuming, but that's the whole idea of a hobby! I spend time working to earn money, so wouldn't really want to do something as a hobby that I'd consider work. Mind you I am more than happy to be a massive leech, and share your prizes! 😝

The sister:

Emm, so I think my honest opinion would be that you have proved exactly what commitment can do in that you have won some amazing prizes. However I think that someone with a full time job and other commitments like kids or a busy social life wouldn't be able to give it the commitment you have and hence wouldn't reep the benefits. And just as you have won some incredible prizes, some are questionable (angry birds single duvet cover anyone...?!) That said I really admire your commitment to the hobby and I'm glad you enjoy it, I can see how it can be addictive! Equally I am not intending on taking it up myself.

The flatmates:

1) I didn't quite get what it was at first, so I suppose my first thought was part confusion and part interest. I had a quick look in to it a few years ago and struggled to understand how the websites worked and couldn't be bothered to put in the effort to learn so just sort of forgot about it...I think it sounds really exciting (winning stuff always is I suppose) but I don't think I have the patience to do it myself. So in other words, I think it sounds like a fun hobby but also probably not one I'd ever take up because it's not really suited to me (a lazy person).

2) My first thoughts when you told me were actually just genuine astonishment that one can actually win stuff. Like when you told me you won your Apple Watch in a radio competition I thought that was so cool, cause I never think to enter any just because I never believed it would work. So my view of the hobby is a really positive one, I really envy your commitment to it as well and all the packages you get all the time (theres a few more waiting for you here in the kitchen btw).

The fellow student:

I really thinks it's a cool hobby! Because you are spending your time doing something that actually gets you stuff and you seem really enthusiastic about it. It's nice to see people really into their hobbies. I mean I just play video games and martial arts I don't win iPads and stuff. Plus trying to win competitions and that sort of thing is fun in of itself!

The friend:

Surprise: I had no idea you did it, I was shocked you did. I was impressed at your commitment, following and success though! I was also intrigued to see what it's about, and to hear all the stuff you'd won. I actually considered starting up myself, but it only lasted a day as I guess I wasn't bothered enough to put the effort in.

Thanks to everyone who answered my questions! What do your friends and family think of comping? Comment below any responses you've had, the funnier the better!

Luck and Love,


Saturday, 15 October 2016

Comping Conundrums 2

Hello! After the success of my previous comping conundrums post <check it out here>, I thought that I would have another go at answering some of your comping questions! I chose questions from the original post and also the recent giveaway I launched, which asked you to comment a comping question you wanted answered. Here are the answers to 3 questions I saw crop up a lot! These are just my opinions, but I hope that they help you!

How can you find Instagram competitions more easily?

The reason I chose this question is that it's a tricky one, and I like to be challenged! Instagram is an amazing source of wins, and is the place where I get most of my prizes from, yet these competitions can be hard to find. However, if you master the art of finding and entering Instagram comps, you may find that they are much lower entry, thus increasing your ca There are three main types of Instagram competition:

  1. Like, follow, tag, comment etc. - Simply follow the instructions given by the promoter. I would recommend finding some friends on Instagram that don't mind being tagged (check my Facebook Group <here> for this) and agreeing to tag each other in comps, resulting in you both being exposed to more competitions! I like these ones in particular as they don't clog up the newsfeed of my followers and are very easy to do!
  2. Repost/Regram - I am not as big a fan of these ones, as I feel they don't look quite as pretty as some of the other pictures on my account. When I do enter, I use the Repost it! app to easily regram the competition post and copy in the original caption (which may include the crucial hashtag). i would recommend going through your account every so often and deleting old regrams for competitions that you know have ended as it will stop future promoters labelling you as a 'comper' (even if you are one) and perhaps not choosing you as the winner.
  3. Creative Comps - This has to be my favourite Instagram competition, as it can be so much fun to do! Often a promoter will give you a theme to follow, and you have to take a picture expressing this. Try to do something a bit different that will make you stand out, and don't forget to include the hashtag and tag the promoter so they know you have entered. For one competition I had to show what I was doing instead of studying, so I went to the Aberdeen beach on a freezing cold day and balanced precariously over the water (shown below). This resulted in me winning a 'student essentials' hamper!

Okay, so how do we find these competitions? Well, it's all in the hashtags. Unlike Twitter, you can only search for one hashtag at a time on Instagram, which can make it much harder to find the competitons (but when you do find them, this means they are more likely to be lower entry). The thing is, when you type in the trusty #win, you end up with a screen full of body buildings, sporty folk and people who apparently #win at life. Try hashtags such as #giveaway #entertowin #winme and always have a wee comping session on #winitwednesday and #freebiefriday!

For more Instagram tips and hashtags, see my blog post <here>.

How do you chase up a promoter about a win? Will nagging them make you less likely to win?

Ah the age old comping ire, a missing winner. It can be so frustrating to wait for ages and ages for a competition winner to be announced (especially if you put in a lot of effort) only for one to never appear. So how do you chase it up, without getting on the promoters bad side?

Well, to start with, be nice. Sometimes a promoter may have become caught up in other business and forgotten. Give them a couple of weeks and then I would start with a gentle nudge asking privately on Twitter, or some other form of social media, if a winner has been chosen. If you know other compers who have entered, ask them to do the same. Remember to check the T&Cs in case it gives a date by which the winner will be chosen, and only get in touch after that date.

If this doesn't work, have a look at the T&Cs of the comp to find a contact email address and try the same thing.If the company do get back to you saying that they have chosen a winner but won't be giving out the name, this is against the CAP code, so make sure to (politely) tell them this and even quote it.

Another idea is to send a recorded delivery letter to the company asking who has won the competition. You can even include an envelope with your address on it with a stamp attached so that they have no excuse for not replying.

If all else fails, go to ASA (Advertising Standards Authority) as a last resort. Complete the form online at and be sure to include details of any communication you have had (or attempted to have as it may be) with the company.

As for nagging reducing your chances of winning, in my opinion, I don't think it will do any harm. As long as you are polite and friendly (perhaps slipping in how exciting the giveaway is), there's nothing wrong with making sure a competition is completed fairly. I've even heard stories of people who have spent a long time trying to find out who the winner is, only to be told it's them! Coincidence? Maybe, but there's no harm in trying. 

I wondered what you thought the biggest waste of time in relation to entering comps that people might be doing?

Put simply - entering competitions for things that you don't want or need.

It can become so easy to fall into the trap of just entering any old competition, but when the prizes start to come through, it may not feel like so much of a win if you have no use for it. Sure, you could sell it, but there may be someone out there who would really have loved that prize.

Instead of entering any old giveaway on auto-pilot, try making a wish list <tips on this here> and start focussing on these prizes. You can update your wishlist every few months, and it can be so satisfying to see the objects being ticked off (so be sure to include big and small prizes to keep you motivated). When it's coming up to birthdays and Christmas, I create a whole new 'presents wish list' so I can save money and win my friends and family the things they really want.

By investing more time on finding certain prizes, you may be entering less competitions but end up winning more exciting prizes. Similarly, you could invest time in finding creative and effort competitions, which tend to be lower entry. It may take some time and thought to come up with that winning entry, but it can be a lot of fun and a much better use of your time.

In summary, organise your comping better by concentrating on the things that you want to win. It will make it more rewarding, and also more motivating! And anyway, taking a picture on a freezing cold beach is way more invigorating than sitting in front of a laptop for another hour!

Thanks for joining me for another episode of comping conundrums! Please leave any queries you may have in the comments below and I may just answer them next time!

Luck and love, 


Thursday, 13 October 2016

Heinz #cansong with lyrics - Make Some Noise

You may have heard that super catchy tune in the Heinz Beans advert recently, and even better it's a competition! Simply learn the song and upload your version of the song.

Wait, did I say simply?

Despite the fact that I am quite musical, this took me a long time to learn. But I stuck with it and finally managed to tap along on my old tin can (which has traveled to many locations for filming and finally ended up in Berlin)

Here's my version of the song, along with some lyrics in case you want to give it a go too!

Luck and Love,


Wednesday, 5 October 2016

Monthly Entry

Since my Daily and Instant wins list was such a hit, I have decided to make a Monthly win list! So many companies want to have competitions to entice in new customers, but perhaps can't afford to give away prizes daily. I go on once a month and enter these comps. To make things easier for you, here is a list for you to go through at the start of each month (or the end if you forget!). Bookmark this page to make life easier!

  • Neal's Yard Remedies
    • Post a picture to social media with the hashtag #MyBestYearYet along with a wellbeing tip
    • Monthly winners of Natural Wellbeing Kits
    • One overall winner of a holiday to Mexico for two
    • Ends 9th January 2017 
  • Yeo Valley: Yeokens
    • Earn Yeokens (like Tokens but Yeo Valley Style) by purchasing special packs of their products
    • Exchange these Yeokens for entry into the monthly competition
  • Discovery
    • Win a watch every month
    • Big prize draw December 2016

There are also a few prize draws that ask you to sign up to their newsletter and they pick a winner monthly. This requires much less effort, but you have to be willing to receive yet another newsletter!

Sunday, 2 October 2016

Prize Unboxing: September 2016

Prize: Tickets to the Glasgow Wedding Show
From: Tie The Knot
Entry: Online Form

Prize: Football Training Kit
From: Asda/Richmond Sausages
Entry: Online Form

Prize: Framed Print
From: TheKitchyMumma
Entry: Instagram (Follow and Like)
Note: Was Very Low Entry

Prize: Jeffree Star Lipstick
From: MissRQureshi
Entry: Instagram

Prize: Florasaurus Toy
From: Flora
Entry: Purchase Necessary

Prize: Lego Superhero Movie
Entry: Click-to-Win

Prize: Hoodie, Mug and other Uni Essentials
From: Capital FM
Entry: Real Life Spin the Wheel

Prize: Peanut Hottie
From: Peanut Hottie
Entry: Facebook

Prize: Coffee
From: Profile Coffee Company
Entry: Instagram

Prize: Shoes
From: Total Soleutions
Entry: Instagram (Follow, Like, Tag 2 Friends)

Prize: Mug
From: Signal 1 FM
Entry: Radio Quiz

Prize: OWL SHOES (I'm excited, okay?)
From: Haaty London
Entry: Instagram (Follow and Tag)

Prize: Just Us Box
From: Just Us

Prize: Collection of Books
From: Watkins
Entry: Instagram (Follow, post a photo with the tag #effortlesslymindful)

Prize: Recipe Book
From: Lotus Biscuits
Entry: Instagram Effort Comp/Purchase Necessary

Prize: Summer Bag
From: Oxford Campus
Entry: Facebook (comment where you want to go on holiday)

This months favourite prize: The Owl Shoes. I love them so much!