What are the odds of winning the lottery?

We have all dreamed of winning the jackpot on the lottery at some point in our lives, but what are the chances of actually winning a lottery jackpot? In this article we break down the odds of winning the major lotteries you can play in the UK.

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What are the odds of winning the National Lottery (Lotto)?

The odds of winning the National Lottery (Lotto) are 1 in 45 million.

However, it used to be 1 in 7.5 million, before the National Lottery added another number to the ticket and increased the ball pool from 49 to 59 numbers.

Since its launch in November 1994, the National lottery has created over 6,800 millionaires, with the largest jackpot of £66 million back in 2016.

To be fair, two ticket holders split it, but £33 million is not a bad haul!

Being the original lottery in the UK the National Lottery remains hugely popular, with thousands of lottery tickets being bought each week.

What are the odds of winning EuroMillions?

The odds of winning EuroMillions are 1 in 139 million. So, significantly less chance of winning than the National Lottery.

EuroMillions is played across Europe in nine countries – UK, Ireland, Spain, France, Austria, Belgium, Luxembourg, Portugal and Switzerland.

Since 2004, millions of pounds has been won on EuroMillions with the UK having the highest percentage (27.5%) of total jackpot winners, ahead of Spain and France.

The largest EuroMillions jackpot ever won in the UK was £195,707,000 in July 2022.

The largest EuroMillions jackpot that has been won in Europe is €210 million, won in February 2021 by a ticket holder in Switzerland.

The EuroMillions jackpot cap is now €220 million.

What are the odds of winning Thunderball?

The odds of winning the Thunderball jackpot are 1 in 8 million, so roughly 5 times more chance of winning the jackpot compared to the National Lottery.

The first Thunderball draw took place on 12th June 1999, where the original jackpot was £250,000.

This grew to £500,000 in 2010, when the number of balls to select from went from 34 to 39.

What are the odds of winning The Health Lottery's Big Win?

The odds of winning The Big Win are 1 in 2.1 million. 

This means you are roughly FOUR times more likely to win the jackpot compared to Thunderball, or over TWENTY times more likely to win than the Lotto!

Of course, you can increase your chances of winning The Big Win even more by joining a lottery syndicate with your friends, family or work colleagues.

The Health Lottery isn’t a national lottery, it’s six society lotteries that each represent several local authority areas across Great Britain.

Each local society lottery takes a turn, so that every area in England, Scotland and Wales gets a fair share of the money raised.

To date over £130 million has been raised for good causes through The Health Lottery.

You can read more about all the good causes that The Health Lottery supports here .

Can I improve my odds?

The short answer is no - odds are odds, and apart from choosing to play games with better odds there's not much you can do. You can choose to stake less, however. All of The Health Lottery's draw games ( The Big Win , All or Nothing and QuickWin) cost just £1 to play and if you decide to play The Big Win through our VIP subscription programme it actually works out as less than 80p a line! You can read all about playing as a VIP here .

Healthy play

Whatever games you select, and however you play them, please do so within your limits and have fun. You can refer to our Healthy Play section for advice, and check your gambling behaviour with the brilliant GamCare self-assessment tool we've linked there. If you ever want to talk to someone you can call our helpline on 0330 390 22 89*. 

*Calls are charged at local rate plus your telephone access charge. 

The current society benefitting from funds raised is EWA Health CIC T/A HL Wales

The Health Lottery operates on behalf of 6 Community Interest Companies (CICs), managing 6 society lotteries that operate in 12 geographical regions across Great Britain. These exist to help tackle health inequalities in their respective areas. People’s Health Trust (PHT) is an independent charity that assesses grant applications and award funding across the 12 regions. Read about some of the good causes HERE. For information regarding all funded projects or to submit a grant application visit PHT HERE. 20.34% of every lottery draw ticket and online scratchcard purchased is donated to good causes. 36.02% is spent on prizes. 43.64% is spent expenses (actual expenses exceed this figure). Our average annual proceeds from lotteries are £12.5m. The odds of winning The Big Win jackpot are (1 in 2.1m) and the odds of winning any Big Win prize is (1 in 9.7). The odds of winning the All or Nothing jackpot is (1 in 1.35m) and the odds of winning any All or Nothing prize is (1 in 4.5). The odds of winning a QuickWin jackpot is (1 in 2.1m) and the odds of winning any QuickWin prize is (1 in 6). All winning lottery numbers are selected using an approved random number generator (RNG). Click on the links below for full T&Cs and FAQs for each of our games.

Please help us to support vital health causes in your community. Each of the 6 society lotteries is licensed by the Gambling Commission.