Hidden Cash treasure hunt hits London
A millionaire who has been hiding envelopes of cash in cities around the US has announced that he will take his treasure hunt to London this weekend. 20 envelopes stuffed with £100 cash will be hidden around one of London's parks, and then he will tweet clues on @HiddenCash to help people find them. The winners are then encouraged to post pictures to the Twitter feed.
So why is he doing this, and can you cash in?%VIRTUAL-SkimlinksPromo%
Why?The man behind the craze is Jason Buzi, a 43-year-old property millionaire from Palo Alto in California - who stumps up the cash - along with some friends. He has run the treasure hunt in San Francisco, Los Angeles, New York, Chicago and Houston. This morning on the Hidden Cash Twitter account he tweeted: "BIG plans for London. Lots of money coz a pound is worth almost two dollars."
He told the Daily Telegraph that London would be the first city for his European expansion of the project, and the newspaper suggested that Birmingham could be next - followed by Paris and Madrid. Buzi told the paper. "Londoners are big Twitter users so I'm sure there will be quite a crowd. You guys seem to love a treasure hunt so it could become a scramble for the money."
Twitter responses have been mixed, with several suggesting that the hunt ought to go to where the money is needed, target people who need it most, or alternatively Buzi ought to give the money to charity himself. He has had to take to Twitter to remind people that he will not give money to people who contact him through the Twitter feed begging for cash.
He told the Telegraph that Hidden Cash was different to the charitable giving he already does - this is about having fun and bringing people together - the money is incidental. On his Twitter feed he simply calls it a 'Social Experience'.
Certainly those who take part enjoy it. After last weekend's hunt in Houston, one person who took part and didn't find any cash commented: "The worse case, you had a good time.... You can't beat it – free money you can never beat." That same weekend a winner in New York told the press: "We were looking forward to the adventure. We actually didn't expect to win."
Can you cash in?To take part you'll need to be in London this weekend, and keep your eye on Hidden Cash's Twitter feed. Clues last week included: "Chicago - final drop: What does "Life of Pi", "Lord of the Flies" and "Robinson Crusoe" all have in common? Go there now. 5 envelopes" The clue took treasure hunters to Northerly Island to hunt for their envelopes. The next tweets then gave more specific clues for each envelope.
If you're out and about it's worth checking the Twitter feed regularly, as often people who are not local will tweet the answer to the clue to give you a head start. And bear in mind that not all the envelope drops are made at the same time, so if you check a hiding place once, it may still be worth checking it again later.