Just before Christmas, we explained the annual excitement that is the Spanish El Gordo lottery. It is quite remarkable as an event and one of the oldest lotteries in the world. Each ticket has multiple winners, but the excitement for this is in the taking part and not the winning. Jackpots are often divided between hundreds of people, and being a winner – even winning pennies – is a “Bucket List” achievement. 2016’s event was the biggest ever. Recently, authorities revealed that the total prize fund for El Gordo passed over £2bn in prizes.
Spanish El Gordo Prize Breakdown
74% of the population entered the 2016 Spanish El Gordo. With over 14,000 prizes on offer (from a few Euros right up to the large jackpot), it unites the country like nothing else. Long queues outside shops licensed to sell the tickets are normal, as is the buying and selling of purchased tickets so players can acquire favoured numbers. It is an international event too, with players in over 140 countries buying into the lottery. 2016 players spent a total of €2.3bn, or £2.1bn. We reported last month that it is normal for each player to spend an average of €64 each (tickets cost €20) and 2016 was no exception.
It is played once a year and is the biggest lottery because it is so rare. The Spanish El Gordo draw takes place every 22nd December. Players always expect a large number of winners and this year was no exception. The lucky jackpot winners numbered 1,650 – each winning around €400,000 each. The winning number was 66513. Organisers were particularly pleased for the most recent draw. It was bigger than the 2015 draw, sales were up 3.5%. They are planning early for 2017, hoping to build on the success of the most recent draw. However, you will not now be able to buy tickets until July.