Friday, June 6, 2008

National Lottery Odds of Winning and ROI

This table shows the best odds of winning the smallest prize on each national lottery game.

It grew out of my own experience of putting £30 into a national lottery account at the beginning of March. It is now June and I still have £20 in it even though I have bought tickets for every Saturday and Wednesday draw plus Euromillions. Its just luck, but I am now being careful and working out which game is likely to cost me the least to take part in.

Game Min Win Min Win Amount Min Win Odds ROI
Daily Play Match 4 £5 1:23 21%
Lotto Match 3 £10 1:57 17.5%
Dream Number Match 1 £2 1:12 16%
Thunderball Match1 + TB £5* 1:33 15%
Euro Millions Match 1 + 2 STRS £7* 1:39 11.2%

Lotto + Dream Number


*approximate winnings based on recent weeks

ROI is return on investment.

i.e. if you spent £100 on daily play tickets you would be statistically likely to win back £21 of it.

My calculation assumes that you only ever win the smallest, most frequently awarded prizes.

The combination of main Lotto plus Dream number is likely to cost the least to take part in on a regular basis as you may win 33% of your stakes back in prizes compared to only 17.5% for Lotto on its own.

Average Odds of Winning Any prize

Thunderball 5.50% (18:1)
Euromillions 4.25% (23:1)
Lotto 1.86% (53:1)
Dream No. 10.00% (10:1)

Disclaimer: This article does not constitute any sort of advice and is for entertainment purposes only. Don't bet on it!