The Department of Internal Affairs

Te Tari Taiwhenua | Department of Internal Affairs

Building a safe, prosperous and respected nation


It’s the race that stops two nations

29 October 2020

Every year the Melbourne Cup brings workplaces across Aotearoa to a standstill to take in the spectacle, and while there may not be any fashion in the field this year, there will be no shortage of action.
The office sweepstake is a Kiwi favourite, bringing together first timers and aficionados, and turning them into racing experts.
To make sure everything goes to plan, Te Tari Taiwhenua, Department of Internal Affairs want to be sure the only controversy is that photo finish, so here is a friendly reminder of the rules:

  • Prize money can’t exceed $500.
  • All money raised must be returned as prizes.
  • Firearms, liquor, tobacco and sexual services are all prohibited prizes.
  • The organiser can’t pocket a fee or profit in any way from holding a sweepstake.

DIA’s role in regulating gambling

    1. We regulate casino and non-casino gambling in New Zealand to ensure Kiwis can enjoy safe and fair gambling that contributes to community wellbeing.

    2. Sweepstakes, such as those run during the Melbourne Cup, are allowed under the Gambling Act 2003, but must comply with certain rules which are summarised above and can be found can be found in full here:

    3. Conducting illegal gambling can result in a fine of up to $20,000.

The Melbourne Cup race will be on Tuesday 3 November 2020.


Media Desk
Te Tari Taiwhenua Department of Internal Affairs
Mobile: +64 27 535 8639 | email: