ArtsAutosBooksBusinessEducationEntertainmentFamilyFashionFoodGamesGenderHealthHolidaysHomeHubPagesPersonal FinancePetsPoliticsReligionSportsTechnologyTravel

McDonald's Monopoly: A History

Updated on September 28, 2012

Since 1987 millions have played the Monopoly sweepstakes at their local McDonald's restaurants. The game is even played outside the United States in countries such as Canada, the United Kingdom, Germany, France, Spain, Hong Kong, Australia, Portugal, the Netherlands, Switzerland and Poland. The Monopoly sweepstakes has had its fair share of entertainment and controversy.

The First Monopoly Sweepstakes

When monopoly was first introduced in 1987 the rules were typed up and printed with the board game. On each visit to McDonald's you received a game piece that included two stamps. There were "instant winner" pieces, which could be redeemed at any McDonald's or board game pieces which you would moisten and place on your board game. To obtain a cash prize, the manager at your local McDonald's would provide you with a pre-addressed envelope to be sent off to the "redemption center." In 1987 the prizes available were of course monetary values from $100.00 to $1 million dollars. The sweepstakes also advertised winning vacations, dream homes, educational scholarships, a 1988 Lincoln Town Car, and money towards your mortgage. If you're interested in viewing the board game from 1988 you can do so by visiting the Newspaper Archive.


As more people started playing monopoly, the prizes increased. During the first year McDonald's offered 40 million dollars in prizes, which continued to grow. In the 1990s the rules changed, allowing participants to only receive tokens, or game pieces with specific purchases. Prizes in the 1990s included:



McDonald's hired Simon Marketing to produce and advertise the game in the United States. From 1995 until the year 2000 the "major" pieces were taken out of play and passed to associates. Reports state that associates received over 24 million dollars from the monopoly sweepstakes and other contests Simon Marketing promoted for McDonald's. The contest was placed on hold in 2000- one of the associates tipped off the FBI and an investigation was initiated. McDonald's did chose to rectify the issue by providing new, legitimate winners millions of dollars. The investigation ended with the arrest of eight individuals and twenty one total indictments.

Will you participate in the McDonald's Monopoly Sweepstakes?

See results

Monopoly is back

Monopoly did appear again in until 2003. Offering prizes such as an Xbox system with five games, portable DVD players, wireless camera phones and plasma televisions. Of course the million dollar prize is still what most contestants seek. McDonald's started including coupons for Red Box rentals, Coke Rewards, and Fat Heads gift cards. You can use their website as a location to enter your codes. The prizes for 2012 are:

  • 2013 Fiat 500 Sport Hatchback (10 winners)
  • Beaches Resorts vacation (30 winners)
  • SpaWish Gift Cards $100 (500 winners)
  • EA Sports Trip (4 winners)
  • Cash Prizes


    0 of 8192 characters used
    Post Comment

    • stephwazere profile image


      6 years ago from England

      Great hub, I've loved this game most of my life. Thank you for sharing! :)

    • Jason Marovich profile image

      Jason F Marovich 

      6 years ago from Detroit

      It should be a crime to throw away monopoly stamps! My wife has no interest in the game so I get 2x the stamps. You should know that, being a completionist, I desire getting the elusive Vermont to go with my Connecticut and Oriental just as much or more than I care about winning the prize :D

      Cool hub, thanks!


    This website uses cookies

    As a user in the EEA, your approval is needed on a few things. To provide a better website experience, uses cookies (and other similar technologies) and may collect, process, and share personal data. Please choose which areas of our service you consent to our doing so.

    For more information on managing or withdrawing consents and how we handle data, visit our Privacy Policy at:

    Show Details
    HubPages Device IDThis is used to identify particular browsers or devices when the access the service, and is used for security reasons.
    LoginThis is necessary to sign in to the HubPages Service.
    Google RecaptchaThis is used to prevent bots and spam. (Privacy Policy)
    AkismetThis is used to detect comment spam. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide data on traffic to our website, all personally identifyable data is anonymized. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Traffic PixelThis is used to collect data on traffic to articles and other pages on our site. Unless you are signed in to a HubPages account, all personally identifiable information is anonymized.
    Amazon Web ServicesThis is a cloud services platform that we used to host our service. (Privacy Policy)
    CloudflareThis is a cloud CDN service that we use to efficiently deliver files required for our service to operate such as javascript, cascading style sheets, images, and videos. (Privacy Policy)
    Google Hosted LibrariesJavascript software libraries such as jQuery are loaded at endpoints on the or domains, for performance and efficiency reasons. (Privacy Policy)
    Google Custom SearchThis is feature allows you to search the site. (Privacy Policy)
    Google MapsSome articles have Google Maps embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    Google ChartsThis is used to display charts and graphs on articles and the author center. (Privacy Policy)
    Google AdSense Host APIThis service allows you to sign up for or associate a Google AdSense account with HubPages, so that you can earn money from ads on your articles. No data is shared unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Google YouTubeSome articles have YouTube videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    VimeoSome articles have Vimeo videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    PaypalThis is used for a registered author who enrolls in the HubPages Earnings program and requests to be paid via PayPal. No data is shared with Paypal unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook LoginYou can use this to streamline signing up for, or signing in to your Hubpages account. No data is shared with Facebook unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    MavenThis supports the Maven widget and search functionality. (Privacy Policy)
    Google AdSenseThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Google DoubleClickGoogle provides ad serving technology and runs an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Index ExchangeThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    SovrnThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook AdsThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Unified Ad MarketplaceThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    AppNexusThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    OpenxThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Rubicon ProjectThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    TripleLiftThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Say MediaWe partner with Say Media to deliver ad campaigns on our sites. (Privacy Policy)
    Remarketing PixelsWe may use remarketing pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to advertise the HubPages Service to people that have visited our sites.
    Conversion Tracking PixelsWe may use conversion tracking pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to identify when an advertisement has successfully resulted in the desired action, such as signing up for the HubPages Service or publishing an article on the HubPages Service.
    Author Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide traffic data and reports to the authors of articles on the HubPages Service. (Privacy Policy)
    ComscoreComScore is a media measurement and analytics company providing marketing data and analytics to enterprises, media and advertising agencies, and publishers. Non-consent will result in ComScore only processing obfuscated personal data. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Tracking PixelSome articles display amazon products as part of the Amazon Affiliate program, this pixel provides traffic statistics for those products (Privacy Policy)