Was the "Price Is Right" Contestant Who Gave Up a Chance at a Car for $1,500 an Idiot or a Genius?
If you were given the choice between: A 75% chance at a brand new car . . . or $1,500 to walk away, which would you choose?
On "The Price Is Right" this week, a contestant named Kevin was playing the game, 'Let 'Em Roll.' It's a dice rolling game, where you get a car if ALL FIVE of the rolled dice show the car symbol. On his first roll, he got four cars, but the fifth die showed a dollar amount of $1,500.
Three sides of the dice had a car, and the other three had dollar amounts. And he had two more chances to roll that fifth die and get the car.
If the car did NOT come up, he'd have to take whatever dollar amount was on that die on the last roll. That could be $500, $1,000, or $1,500.
Kevin had already beaten the odds with four cars on his first roll. There's only a 6.25% chance of that happening. The crowd was pumped . . . but despite a 75% chance of winning the car, Kevin chose to walk away with $1,500.
Drew Carey tried to talk him out of it . . . and made sure he understood how the game worked. But Kevin's mind was made up. He was done.
He confirmed that he just wanted the $1,500 . . . FIVE TIMES . . . and then yelled, quote, "I love 'The Price Is Right'! Wooooo!" (???) The crowd was shocked, and there were even some boos.
Naturally, some people are saying this was a dumb decision, but a blog points out that it's actually expensive to "win" a car on a game show. For starters, you have to pay the sales tax on it before you can even take possession of it . . . and that's probably going to be a couple thousand.
Game show loot is also considered income, so you'd have pay federal tax, which could be between 10 and 40% percent. And the state also gets a cut. Plus, there's a possibility that this added "income" pushes you into a higher tax bracket.
One woman who won a car on "The Price Is Right" says she paid about $9,000 in taxes on a $20,000 car. She immediately sold it for $14,800, and ended up netting about $6,000 . . . but it definitely wasn't hassle-free.
That said, the guy didn't seem to be weighing any of this. He was just adamant about taking $1,500 . . . or about $800 to $1,100 after taxes.