How to ‘Play Your Cards Right’ and appear on a TV game show

Jordon Cox

By MoneySavingExpert's Coupon Kid, Jordon Cox

Do you want to COME ON DOOOOWN and appear on a TV game show? It’s easier than you might think to get picked. Here are the tips and casting calls you need.

Being on a TV game show can be a really fun experience and the chance of winning big prizes or cash is the icing on the cake. So if you’re brave enough to test your knowledge (or physical ability) in front of the nation, read on for my pick of the casting calls currently up for grabs. I’ve applied for a few myself – so we could even be competing against each other if we get through!

Popular TV game shows you can apply to be a contestant on

As long as you’re not camera-shy, you can achieve nationwide fame – and sometimes walk away with £1,000s in prizes – by appearing as a contestant on some of the country’s best-loved TV game shows.

Here are the biggies taking applications at the moment:

The Chase – Do you have what it takes to beat the chaser? Face off against ‘The Beast’, ‘The Governess’, ‘The Dark Destroyer’, ‘The Sinnerman’ or ‘The Vixen’ in a head-to-head general knowledge quiz to potentially win £1,000s.

The Price is RightIt’s back, this time presented by Alan Carr. You could be one of the contestants to ‘come on down’ for a chance to win some huge prizes. If you’re a true MoneySaver, guessing the price of everyday items should be easy… and you can get a chance to spin that big wheel. You’ll need to find a large group of friends, as they are looking for groups of 10-20.

Come Dine With Me – Hold a dinner party for complete strangers and the highest-scoring host bags £1,000 in cash… and a grilling from narrator Dave Lamb.

Fifteen to One Could you take on fourteen other players and become the one? There’s £40,000 up for grabs if you think you can.

Mastermind – Fancy sitting in that famous black chair and taking home the Mastermind bowl? I think you know what my specialist subject would be…

Bargain Hunt – Think you can spot hidden treasure and make a profit on it at auction? Teams of two are needed to scout bargains with an antiques expert. Any profit, you pocket.

Countdown – Fancy being a Countdown champion? Find hidden words and solve a few maths problems to take home that famous tea pot. It has to be worth something, right?

Lesserknown shows… your shortcut to stardom?

You can boost your chances of being picked as a contestant by focusing on new shows that’ve never been aired, or that aren’t as widely known. Typically, they won’t get as many applicants – mainly because nobody knows what to expect.

There are often big cash prizes to be won though, so if you fancy diving into the unknown, here are some new shows currently in need of contestants:

Cheap, Cheap, Cheap – A brand new game show hosted by Noel Edmonds. Looking for teams of two that have an eye for a bargain for the chance to win up to £25,000. Should be right up a MoneySaver’s street.

Tenable – Teams of five are needed to take on some lists of ‘Top 10s’. The more you get correct, the more money you’ll win. Hosted by Warwick Davis.

5 Gold RIngs – Phillip Schofield challenges you to place rings in the correct place (eg, place Paris on a map) – but even a pixel out of place could mean you go home with nothing. Looking for pairs of players who could win a huge sum of money.

The Boss – Looking for contestants to use strategy, tactics and general knowledge to answer questions and have a chance of winning the prize pot. Can you spot the weak players in your team in order to win big?

Wedding Day Winners – Engaged couples can compete head-to-head with their families in order to win prizes before they tie the knot. You could have the chance of winning a luxurious honeymoon.

Partners in Rhyme – Hosted by Len Goodman, go head-to-head to compete in a series of rounds all around identifying rhymes. You’ll be paired up with two celebrity guests in order to solve the clues.

TV gameshow inspiration

If you need more motivation than just cash and prizes, I can tell you from personal experience, it’s a lot of fun. The first TV show I ever applied for (not long after I turned 18), I got on and won £1,000 cash for a day’s work. It was on an ITV show called Pick Me hosted by Stephen Mulhern, which was broadcast in November 2015.

It was a new series that was looking for hundreds of contestants, who were all in an audience dressed up in funny clothes trying to get picked to play for prizes. We filmed three episodes on the day and I was picked at the start of the second episode. It took me the whole show (down to the final round) to scoop the £1,000 prize – phew!

Sending off application forms and having telephone interviews aren’t that scary – because you are just talking about yourself. If you get picked to appear the experience is amazing. You should be looked after by the crew with food and drinks – and if you live far away from the venue, you may get your hotel and travel paid for. Basically, it’s a fun day out to possibly win some great prizes – and even make a few friends along the way.

If you want more inspiration, I asked on the MSE Forum to hear from MoneySavers who’ve appeared on a TV game show. And it turns out forumite Chrisx2 is a game show veteran:

“I developed the game show bug back in 2003, kicking off with The Weakest Link. I got picked on mercilessly by Anne, but hey-ho… it’s her job! During the following years I appeared on In it to Win It, Who wants to be a Millionaire, Saturday Night Takeaway and PokerFace to name the most popular ones.

“I love everything about it, getting picked up from home, the make-up, VIP treatment and best of all the prizes. My wins are totalling £50,000 plus the odd holiday. Most memorable was a trip to Las Vegas thanks to Ant and Dec’s Saturday Night Takeaway! My advice… don’t sit and ponder. DO IT!”

Back when I first joined MSE, I wrote a blog with tips on Boosting your chances of appearing on TV game shows – so be sure to have a look to improve your chances.

Have you ever applied for a TV game show? Have you ever won cash or prizes? I’d love to know your stories in the comments below, on Twitter @Jordon_Cox or on Facebook.