Donelan Andrews — a 59-year-old teacher from Georgia — made a shocking discovery while trawling through the fine print of a new insurance policy she had just purchased.
She’d purchased the policy ahead of an upcoming trip, an annual tradition she and seven friends have kept up for the last 25 years. The group had purchased travel insurance before heading to London for their “Silver Anniversary”.
On the last page, she read the following sentence: “If you’ve read this far, then you are one of the very few Tin Leg customers to review all of their policy documentation.”
By the time she finished reading the page, she realised she’d just won $10k.
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Unbeknown to Ms Andrews, travel insurance comparison company Squaremouth launched a secret contest called Pays to Read.
The company slipped some additional text into Tin Leg’s policy documentation, offering a reward to anyone still reading and burying instructions on how to claim the grand prize.
“We understand most customers don’t actually read contracts or documentation when buying something, but we know the importance of doing so,” reads a statement from Squaremouth. “We created the top-secret Pays to Read campaign in an effort to highlight the importance of reading policy documentation from start to finish.”
When Ms Andrews — a home economics and family consumer science teacher — reached the last page of the policy, she said the phrase reminded her of a test question she used to ask her students.
“I used to put a question like that midway through an exam, saying ‘If you’re reading this, skip the next question.’ That caught my eye and intrigued me to keep reading,” she told CBS News.
Ms Andrews was the first customer to contact Squaremouth, just 23 hours after the competition was launched.
Inspired by her dedication to reading and education, Squaremouth also decided to donate an additional $5k to each of the schools Ms Andrews teaches at — Upson-Lee High School and Lamar County High School.
Since her big win, Ms Andrews has revealed she’s retiring from her 25-year teaching career.
“My husband and I are going on a trip to Scotland to celebrate my retirement and our 35th wedding anniversary!” she told reporters. “This will cover most of that cost! And by the way, I will be purchasing trip insurance!”