Has anyone ever won McDonald’s Monopoly?

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After peeling back your umpteenth Pentonville Road sticker on a pack of French fries, it’s easy to find yourself asking has anyone ever won McDonald’s Monopoly.

Despite the prospect of cash prizes, cars, games consoles and much more, actual winners seem few and far between.

However, even though it might seem like McDonald’s Monopoly winners are like fast food unicorns, it is actually possible to win big on the annual promotion.

McDonald's Monopoly prizes McDonald’s Monopoly prizes can include everything from cars to games consoles (Credit: Alamy/Coco Jones)

Has anyone ever won McDonald’s Monopoly?

The Golden Arches has confirmed that people really have won McDonald’s Monopoly – and we’re not just talking about a free Coke or burger.

In a bullish statement on its website, Maccies revealed: “Over the years McDonald’s U.K. has given millions of prizes to millions of people as part of the Monopoly promotion.

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“These have included everything from McDonald’s food prizes and shopping vouchers, to wonderful weekend breaks and spanking new sets of headphones.

“In 2018, a whopping 8,006,175 prizes were claimed, including 6 Mini Coopers, three £100k prizes, two £25k prizes and a Universal Holiday. Not bad, ey?”

In fact, if you look past your own personal McDonald’s misfortunes, there are plenty of Monopoly success stories. For instance, in 2020, The Balance Everyday spoke to winner Michele B, who won $100,000 in the US-based version of the game.

The odds might be long, but technically there’s no reason why you too couldn’t walk away with the big bucks.

McDonald Monopoly McDonald’s Monopoly prizes can be found in most menu items (Credit: Alamy/Fir Mamat)

What is the top prize for McDonald’s Monopoly?

Although details on the 2021 version of the promotion remain sketchy, McDonald’s Monopoly prizes are actually pretty consistent.

In most years, the top prizes range from £100,000 in cash to Mini Cooper cars. There are also smaller, but still significant awards like £10,000 in cash and holidays abroad.

READ MORE: Inside the McDonald’s Monopoly fraud scandal

However, this is still small fry compared to what has historically been available. In the 90s, for instance, the American version of the show offered grand prizes of $1,000,000 – significantly more than the UK promotion.

Unfortunately for American players, this amount of cash made McDonald’s Monopoly a target for fraud, artfully documented in HBO’s McMillions documentary.

McDonald's Monopoly fraud The McDonald’s Monopoly fraud took place throughout the 90s (Credit: Alamy/CoCo Jones)

Who won McDonald’s Monopoly in 2019?

As usual, the 2019 McDonald’s 2019 promotion saw thousands of winners across the country.

Some of the items up for grabs during the promotion included the £100,000 top prize, convertible Minis and over 500 PlayStation 4 Pros.

READ MORE: The truth about McDonald’s secret menu revealed

According to contemporary reports at the time, there were in fact around 50,000 prizes available in 2019. As a result, there were actually several thousand winners across the country.

In fact, the popularity of the promotion in 2019 even prompted a political response. Then-deputy leader of the Labour Party at the time, Tom Watson, decried the offer as a “danger to public health”.

Two years later, and his complaints don’t seem to have made much headway.

Monopoly McDonald’s Monopoly remains a popular promotion (Credit: Alamy/Urban Images)

How do you play McDonald’s Monopoly?

Unlike many similar fast food promotions, McDonald’s Monopoly is actually incredibly simple to play.

In order to participate, customers simply have to try and collect Monopoly game pieces from items on the McDonald’s menu.

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Once you’ve gathered enough matching pieces, players can then redeem their prizes at McDonald’s, depending on the rarity of what they’ve collected.

Ultimately, however, the game is just a great excuse to gorge on Big Macs. Even if you don’t win anything, it’s still extremely enjoyable.

McDonald's Monopoly prizes Politicians occasionally criticise McDonald’s Monopoly (Credit: Alamy/Transportimage Picture Library)

How do I claim my McDonald’s Monopoly prize?

Claiming your McDonald’s Monopoly prize differs according to the type of prize you win.

For instance, items like food and drink and occasionally cash are available as Instant Win tokens. Players can redeem these immediately in store.

READ MORE: What’s it like working at McDonald’s? Ex-employee speaks out

Other prizes, however, might require you to verify the code displayed in the game piece online. Invariably, the bigger prizes require a more thorough process. However, detailed instructions can be found online during the promotion itself.

You should also ensure that all prizes are redeemed before the expiry date and that you’re actually old enough to claim. Some of the vehicle prizes, for instance, are exclusively available for customers over the age of 18.

However, if you have access to the Internet, it’s relatively easy to double-check whether you’ve actually won anything.