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Trans-Tasman trade promotions & permit requirements

It’s not uncommon for marketers to run Trade promotions in Australia and New Zealand at exactly the same time.

And a question we’re often asked by sales and marketing managers is: Do I need permits to run a trade promotion in New Zealand?

The simple answer is no, so long as a competition is only promoting the inherent trade of a product or service. Entry to a promotion can be tied to a product purchase. However, the promoter must not benefit financially from the sale of entries / tickets etc.

In addition, gambling / raffle style promotions where the pool size is determined by the number of tickets sold do require government approval. The general rules from the New Zealand Department of Internal Affairs are as follows:

Criteria for a lawful sales promotion

Conditions cannot be changed once the competition has started. Terms and Conditions of entry should always be accessible to consumers.

Be aware of any other New Zealand legislation, such as the Fair Trading Act, that may also affect your sales promotion scheme.

Promoter conditions

Businesses cannot make any commercial gain from the sales promotion, other than through the normal trading of goods and services. For example, items can’t be sold for more than their usual value.

The goods and services being promoted under the sales promotion are normally sold, created or distributed by the retailer.

All conditions, including the period of the promotion, must be made clear in promotional material before the event is run. 

Entry conditions

It must not cost the person anything extra to enter the competition, other than the normal price of the goods and services.

The customer may be asked to pay the cost of sending their entry in, however:

  • the cost of sending the entry must be at the standard rate – for example the standard rate for posting a letter or for sending a text message via a mobile phone.
  • if it is necessary to download an app to enter the promotion, the app must be free to download.

Please note: The structure of a promotion cannot be changed once a promotion has commenced. The Terms and Conditions of entry must be ’set in stone'. For example, a promotion can’t be extended or the prize pool cannot be adjusted.

Here is a link to the New Zealand government fact sheet.

Or, for an up-to-date guide to Australian Trade Lottery Permits, click here.

For further information please contact: Peter McKinnon (03) 9 646 5644  /

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