Pakistan’s financial market offers various saving options, and among the most popular is the ‘Prize Bond’. For those unfamiliar with the concept, a prize bond is a non-interest-bearing security issued on behalf of the government. It holds periodic draws, giving bondholders a chance to win significant cash prizes. For many, prize bonds are more than just saving instruments; they’re a blend of savings and luck, a lottery where even if you don’t win, you don’t lose your investment.
In this article, we’ll walk you through the step-by-step process of purchasing a prize bond in Pakistan, ensuring that you’re well-equipped to make an informed decision.
1. Understand the Different Denominations
a. Available Values: Prize bonds in Pakistan are available in various denominations. Some of the common denominations include Rs. 100, Rs. 200, Rs. 750, Rs. 1,500, Rs. 7,500, Rs. 15,000, Rs. 25,000, and Rs. 40,000. The value you choose depends on your savings and the amount you wish to invest.
b. Prize Amounts: Each denomination has different prize amounts associated with it. Typically, higher denominations have larger prizes. However, remember that the chances of winning remain a matter of luck.
2. Decide Where to Purchase
a. State Bank of Pakistan (SBP): The State Bank and its subsidiary offices are the primary and most official places to purchase prize bonds.
b. Commercial Banks: Most commercial banks, like National Bank of Pakistan (NBP), Habib Bank Limited (HBL), and Muslim Commercial Bank (MCB) among others, also offer prize bonds for sale.
c. Authorized Dealers: There are specific authorized dealers in various cities that deal exclusively in prize bonds. They can be found in major marketplaces or financial hubs.
3. Required Documentation
a. Valid Identification: You will need a Computerized National Identity Card (CNIC) or a photocopy of it when purchasing a prize bond. This ensures that the transaction is secure and traceable.
b. For Large Purchases: If you’re making a substantial purchase, additional documentation or verification might be needed to comply with financial regulations.
4. Making the Purchase
a. Visit in Person: Head to your chosen purchase point, be it the State Bank, a commercial bank, or an authorized dealer.
b. Fill Out the Necessary Forms: The bank or dealer will provide you with a form to fill out. This typically requires your name, CNIC number, address, and the denomination and number of bonds you wish to purchase.
c. Make the Payment: After filling out the form, you’ll make the payment in the amount of the total value of bonds you’re purchasing.
d. Receive the Bonds: Once the payment is made, you’ll receive the physical prize bonds. Ensure that you store them safely, as they are bearer instruments, meaning whoever holds them can claim their value.
5. Keep an Eye on Draw Dates
a. Frequency: Draws for prize bonds are held regularly. Each denomination has its own specific draw dates which are usually spread out through the year.
b. Checking Results: You can check the draw results on the official State Bank website or in major newspapers. Some dedicated websites and apps also provide this information.
6. Claiming the Prize
a. Lucky Draw: If your prize bond number is announced in the lucky draw, you’re a winner!
b. Procedure: To claim your prize, you’ll need to submit the winning prize bond, a copy of your CNIC, and a filled claim form at the State Bank of Pakistan or any of its designated branches.
c. Tax Deductions: Remember, the prize money is subject to tax. The exact amount can vary, but as of the last update, it was 15% for filers and 25% for non-filers.
7. Safety Tips
a. Store Securely: Keep your bonds in a safe or a secure place. Some people also opt for safe deposit boxes at banks.
b. Keep a Record: Maintain a list of your prize bond numbers. This helps in case of loss or theft and for regularly checking draw results.
c. Purchase from Authorized Sources: Always ensure you’re buying from legitimate sources to avoid counterfeit bonds.
Read More: How Much Tax on Prize Bond
Prize bonds are an attractive saving option in Pakistan due to their dual nature. They allow you to save money while giving you a chance to win cash prizes. By following the steps and tips mentioned above, you can navigate the process with ease and confidence. Whether you win a prize or not, the thrill of the possibility and the security of your saved money remain intact.