Ordinarily, we make fun of themed commemorative days. National Plan for Vacation Day was one exception because that's a strong reminder to think about summer vacation and even holidays as far distant as Thanksgiving, Hanukah, and Christmas early in the year while the most desirable vehicles are still available! After all, the best chance of getting the lowest rates on a rental is by booking as far in advance as possible (330 days). We then began to see ads for the inaugural National Business Traveler Day (NBTD) -- presented by Upside -- show up on our Facebook timelines. All the ads were for prizes related to first class upgrades but had no connection to rental cars at all. Yet the NBTD sweepstakes has many more partners including rental car companies and ride-hailing services, with a large number of prizes available.
Cash for "Airline Upgrades" doesn't make our blog's cut
Let's not be confused -- NBTD is an Upside initiative, just like Small Business Saturday is an American Express initiative. In fact, despite having 25 other corporate partners, entering the NBTD contest requires visiting the Upside website and accepting Upside's Terms and Conditions. Entering the contest also potentially requires accepting emails from participating partners. And we didn't enter in Phase 1 (March 14 - April 4, 2018), when the only available prize was for a First Prize of a $5,000 check toward first class upgrades. A nice prize but the offer had no connection at all to rental cars.
So it wasn't a good offer for the AutoSlash blog ... yet. The second phase of the sweepstakes (April 5 - May 18, 2018) has $298,093.50 worth of prizes available, including $25,000 in Hertz gift cards spread over 120 winners and $10,000 in Uber for Business credits spread over 500 winners.
The $25,000 in Hertz gift cards is exceptionally generous by Hertz standards. In fact, Hertz's prizes in Upside's sweepstakes are more than five times the amount of prizes available in Hertz's own current promotion! And when added to the prizes available from the other partners, our back-of-envelope calculations suggest there are 3,092 total prizes and each must go to a distinct winner (limit one prize per person). We've clearly seen -- and overcome -- worse odds on previous promotions!
Entering the Contest
There are two ways to enter the contest -- online or via mail-in entry. An individual can only enter once but there's a chance for up to 11 bonus entries; those who mail in an entry automatically receive the 11 bonus entries, so that may (surprisingly) be the way to go. Twelve total entries for one of more than 3,000 prizes with the cost of a single postage stamp!
Of course, there are rules. And the rules of this promotion are far more lengthy than many promotions. Entrants have to all be 18, have completed a business trip in 2017, not be convicted of a felony to be eligible for the grand prize (eliminating most individuals featured in our blog on #FelonyFriday), and can't be employed by (or immediate family) of a sponsor. Considering the sponsors include Hertz, JetBlue, MasterCard, Uber, and United Airlines, many of the individuals who would know about the offer are ineligible.
Like any contest with a large number of prizes, there are some very desirable options. The list of prizes includes business class tickets on United or Latam, Hertz gift cards, and Mastercard gift cards. And again, the entry process for the entire promotion starts with a single website, Upside.com/Win, with one set of consolidated Sweepstakes Rules. Partner organizations are also allowed to provide their own offers, so the offer is definitely worth a peek, even by those who aren't interested in entering the sweepstakes!