Local News

A Dozen Dollars Win a Week in Paradise

Posted December 15, 2006
Updated December 16, 2006

Map Marker  Find News Near Me

— Chances are pretty good that you’ve heard of eBay. Well, now there's Limbo, a Web bidding system that works kind of like eBay in reverse.

In Limbo, the lowest bid wins—and one big winner lives in a double-wide mobile home down a lonely dirt road in Nash County. She is paying next to nothing—$11.94—for the trip of a lifetime.

Sheryl Umstead and her husband will be vacationing for a week in October on millionaire Richard Branson’s private island in the Caribbean. She won everything, including airfare.

“They told me it was normally valued at $26,000 a couple per week,” Umstead said. She bid by phone for the trip—20 times a day for 30 days.

With Limbo, players use their phones or computers to bid on items. The winner is the lowest bid that no one else has made, meaning people have to pick an amount that turns out to be unique. Somebody won a Hummer for $57. Umstead earlier won an iPod.

“That bid was 54 cents that I won an iPod at,” she noted.

Limbo uses a toll-free number, so her 600 bids didn’t cost her anything for the calls, either.

Limbo reports that since it launched a year ago, winners have paid less than $1,000 for prizes worth more than $400,000.

The companies that offer the prizes say the auction is a great marketing tool. They say half the players who bid on an item and lose are likely to go ahead and buy the item anyway.


Please with your WRAL.com account to comment on this story. You also will need a Facebook account to comment.

Oldest First
View all
  • pdapresident Dec 18, 2006

    Warning! I did my bids online, but what they don't tell you is that they are going to text message you 4-15 times about every thing you bid on. I got most of my messages at 3am (phone going off in the middle of the night). I got over 50 messages from this company in just 3 days. I will not be back to this site to bid on anything.

  • racingteddies Dec 17, 2006

    I found the site at www.41414.com (via Limbo at Goggle)You place your bid by text messaging with your cell. Normal text charges apply.

  • marebatche4910 Dec 17, 2006

    What is the Limbo website address?

  • cjack55 Dec 15, 2006

    I went to the Limbo site, however, I do not see anything about a toll free number. It mentions that you can play on the web, without using text messaging, but it doesn't tell you how to do it. Can anyone tell me how please? Thanks!

  • Knight874 Dec 15, 2006

    You state that Limbo uses a toll free number. What is the catch? Is the only thing charged to us as the bidder regular text charges by our cell phone carrier?

  • Knight874 Dec 15, 2006

    Where can I find this website "Limbo"