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How Long Do The Price Is Right Winners Need To Wait For Their Prizes?

Since 1972, home audiences have enjoyed watching regular people compete to win big on "The Price is Right." Since its arrival, the show has become one of the longest-running network series (via CBS News) and has been revered as the greatest game show of all time by TV Guide (via CBS). During its stellar run, the show has become known for its charming hosts, the wheel, the unique array of contestants, and, of course, the fabulous prizes. 

"The Price is Right" may not offer its contestants snacks, but it does offer them an opportunity to win an assortment of exciting prizes. Over the years, the show has provided all sorts of things to win, from trips to exotic locations to a full-grown elephant. There is no shortage of worthwhile bounties everyday people want to walk away with when they compete on the popular game show. But if any of these fortunate souls are lucky to stand tall as champions, the question remains: when do the people get to take hold of their winnings? 

Many may believe that people drive their new car off the lot when they win or jump on a plane to a tropical paradise as soon as the credits roll. While there are most assuredly plenty of assumptions and speculations out there about how contestants get their new hammock or kitchen set, the truth behind the matter may very well shock "The Price is Right" fans when they see what the process actually entails. 

Contestants have to wait until the episodes airs and then some

It's essential for "The Price is Right" fans to realize that winners don't walk out with what they win that day. Debra Fields won a car on the show and unveiled what one must go through to get their prizes in an interview with App. "After the show is over and you see your prizes, you fill out a form, and it explains exactly what you won and that you have to pay California income tax on your prizes. You see the form, you sign it. And they say, approximately one week before the show airs, you'll receive a letter from accounting and you'll see the amount that you owe. And then after the show airs, you can send in your certified check." Aurora De Lucia, who also won a vehicle, revealed, "the show's paperwork stipulates they have 90 days to make arrangements, with the winner given ten days to collect the vehicle once they've been notified it's available" (via Mental Floss).

Whether contestants win a car, boat, a fancy vacation, or anything in between, they must ensure they can pay the taxes before the process of receiving their prizes after the entry releases can begin (via The New York Times). According to the show's schedule, episodes are taped several weeks before they air. So people could be waiting almost a month to get the bill for the stuff they won, pay it, and then wait for the show to take the necessary steps of sending the goods during the time frame allotted in the contracts. To the victor goes the spoils, but in the case of "The Price is Right," there is a lengthy process those that are triumphant must endure.