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World's biggest lottery draw sets new record

El GordoEl Gordo: World's biggest lottery draw sets new record
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El Gordo prize pool reaches a new high, now worth €2.5 billion

By Todd Northrop

Any economic hardships that may exist in Spain are not dampening the desire to win big, as people line up outside Lottery outlets, particularly in the cities of Madrid and Barcelona, to purchase tickets for this year's El Gordo drawing.

As the drawing date of El Gordo (literally translated as "The Fat One") nears, lottery players are lining up for their chance to win a slice of an unbelievably huge pot of money.  El Gordo is know around the world for its annual Christmastime lottery drawing.

This year the El Gordo draw will pay out €2.5 billion (US$3.25 billion) to over 1,202,490 cash prize winners.  Unlike traditional big-jackpot games, El Gordo is specifically designed to pay out relatively smaller prize amounts to a greater number of people.  Almost everyone in the country plays, and the nation comes to a standstill while the lengthy drawing procedure takes place.

This year the drawing takes place on Thurs., Dec. 22.

First prize is worth €4 million (US$5.2 million), the highest amount ever, and up 33 percent from a year ago.  Sales are expected to match last year's despite the economic crisis, said lottery operator Loterias y Apuestas del Estado (LAE).

The tickets are sold in 4,100 official kiosks throughout the country but can also be bought in a further 6,400 outlets such as newspaper kiosks.

The tickets are each divided into 10 parts, with each part known as a decima.  A decima costs €20 (US$26), making the purchase of an entire ticket an expensive affair, at  €200 (US$260).  If a particular ticket wins a prize, then each decima is worth one-tenth of that prize, since there are ten decimas per ticket.

Some people like to play an entire ticket, while other like to play decimas from several tickets.

"I know we have economic problems and we might suffer even more in the new year," one unemployed purchaser said as he lined up in the cold, "but we all dream that we will be the one and that we will get lucky."

Many people have been saving up for the lottery all year and will spend even more than is usual.  According to a survey by consultancy Deloitte, four out of every five Spaniards will take part in El Gordo this year, and will spend an average of €60 (US$78) buying tickets for the drawing.

"If I can win a bit of extra cash, we'll manage better," said 66 year old Ivan Lopez, who was in a line outside a lottery outlet in Playa Flamenca, planning to spend €120 on various tickets for his children to share.

Ticket sales in last year's Christmas draw totalled €2.7 billion (US$3.5 billion).  This year, the total ticket sales are forecast to reach €3.6 billion (US$4.7 billion), of which €2.5 billion (US$3.25 billion) will be paid out in prize money, including several individual jackpots.

This year the prize list will include:

  • 180 jackpots of €4 million (US$5.2 million)
  • 180 second prizes of €1.25 million (US$1.6 million)
  • Almost 350,000 prizes of €1000 (US$1,300)

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20 comments. Last comment 3 years ago by gocart1.
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temptustoo's avatar - cat anm.gif
usa
United States
Member #89199
April 2, 2010
2538 Posts
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Posted: December 15, 2011, 12:02 am - IP Logged

I wonder if they would be upset if I won.. LOL..  Sure would love to play without going on that long plane ride.. Big Grin Angel

    gocart1's avatar - lighthouse
    da bronx,city island,n.y.
    United States
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    January 17, 2006
    333 Posts
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    Posted: December 15, 2011, 12:10 am - IP Logged

    I wonder if they would be upset if I won.. LOL..  Sure would love to play without going on that long plane ride.. Big Grin Angel

    Now you got me thinking "temptustoo"....i wonder if the tickets might be on EBAY for a slightly more price then if store brought.....

      gocart1's avatar - lighthouse
      da bronx,city island,n.y.
      United States
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      January 17, 2006
      333 Posts
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      Posted: December 15, 2011, 12:30 am - IP Logged

      Now you got me thinking "temptustoo"....i wonder if the tickets might be on EBAY for a slightly more price then if store brought.....

      Nope....Just looked al over  "EBAY"......o  well

        weshar75's avatar - Lottery-042.jpg
        Mcminnville, Oregon
        United States
        Member #3013
        December 13, 2003
        2398 Posts
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        Posted: December 15, 2011, 1:40 am - IP Logged

        My uncle lives in spain and my mother wonders if he plays the lottery.  That is a nice prize for first place or even the runner up prize is nice too.-weshar75

          cbr$'s avatar - maren
          Cordova,Al.
          United States
          Member #104485
          January 15, 2011
          466 Posts
          Online
          Posted: December 15, 2011, 2:29 am - IP Logged

          I like the pay-out scale on this ticket. It is nice that drawing is held before Christmas ,Good Luck to the winners.

            dk1421's avatar - Lottery-024.jpg
            North Carolina
            United States
            Member #64582
            September 1, 2008
            332 Posts
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            Posted: December 15, 2011, 9:35 am - IP Logged

            Do you have to be a citizen to win?

            "Don't be a schmuck, always take the cash." -Coin Toss

              Avatar
              Orlando, FL
              United States
              Member #115789
              August 28, 2011
              259 Posts
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              Posted: December 15, 2011, 11:00 am - IP Logged

              Good Question.

               

              Next Time in In Spain , I'll buy a ticket along witha Euro Millions!

                dpoly1's avatar - driver
                PA
                United States
                Member #66141
                October 16, 2008
                1449 Posts
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                Posted: December 15, 2011, 12:05 pm - IP Logged

                I would like it better if one person could win the €2.5 billion !   Big Grin

                  hearsetrax's avatar - 78638c467ef281febf24383e126f74b6

                  United States
                  Member #52345
                  May 21, 2007
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                  Posted: December 15, 2011, 12:08 pm - IP Logged

                  Agree with stupid

                    dpoly1's avatar - driver
                    PA
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                    October 16, 2008
                    1449 Posts
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                    Posted: December 15, 2011, 12:17 pm - IP Logged

                    Agree with stupid

                    No Pity! the greed of envy !!!!!!!!!

                      Avatar
                      Atlanta, GA
                      United States
                      Member #3480
                      January 24, 2004
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                      Posted: December 15, 2011, 4:30 pm - IP Logged

                      I noticed two websites to buy El Gordo tickets - are they legit?

                      <snip> (Please, no free advertising)

                      They are 40 Euros a ticket on each.

                        gocart1's avatar - lighthouse
                        da bronx,city island,n.y.
                        United States
                        Member #30516
                        January 17, 2006
                        333 Posts
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                        Posted: December 15, 2011, 4:45 pm - IP Logged

                        I would like it better if one person could win the €2.5 billion !   Big Grin

                        I Agree!

                          maringoman's avatar - kobold
                          Massachusetts
                          United States
                          Member #37433
                          April 14, 2006
                          2094 Posts
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                          Posted: December 15, 2011, 6:02 pm - IP Logged

                          Agree with stupid

                          haha

                          It's a futile effort.

                            Avatar
                            charlotte, nc
                            United States
                            Member #108520
                            March 26, 2011
                            53 Posts
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                            Posted: December 15, 2011, 6:24 pm - IP Logged

                            That wouldn't be a bad idea to purchase tickets in another country because this powerball and mega millions here do not have enough winners.

                            The jackpots here will get up to $100-$300 million dollars and they always let 1 or 2 people walk away as winners.

                            This lottery system here is unfair and greedy and we should boycott it and not purchase tickets unless it is set up fair

                            The powerball tickets will be $2 in jan and even though it increases they proclaim the jackpot will be more but it want

                            produce more winners that sucks.