Each year, somewhere in the world, we seem to hear of a record breaking lottery win that catapults the lucky recipient into his or her country’s top rich-list overnight. But which is the biggest of them all – and can you get a piece of the action?
Well Spain’s El Gordo (literally, the “fat” one) lives up to its name and is the planet’s biggest lottery in purely financial terms. The prize for last year’s El Gordo totalled €2.24 billion (around $2.43 billion or £1.68 billion). But in this case, there’s no one jackpot available and people usually win a share of the overall prize.
For the biggest individual prizes, we have to go to the land of really big stuff; the USA where the “Powerball” lottery is currently the fattest of the fat. Recently (in January 2016), three lucky winners each shared a prize of $1.586 billion!
The prizes were so enormous that the winners were given the option of taking their winnings via yearly payments over the next 29 years (which would be more tax-efficient) – or to take a one-off payment of $930 million. And yes, this did set a new record for individual lottery payments worldwide, breaking the old record which had also been set in the USA via the Mega Millions lottery which saw a prize of a mere $656 million split between three lucky winners in April 2012.
The USA Powerball lottery is available in in 44 of the U.S.’s 50 states, but anyone wanting a piece of the (very big…) action can now buy Powerball online tickets with relative ease as recognised Powerball lottery ticket partners are able to sell both individual US state and US national lottery tickets.
The same goes for the word’s other biggest lotteries including the Euromillions lottery, Eurojackpot, Megamillions US, the UK Lotto and the Canada-based Lotto 6/49 CAD to name just a few of the world’s biggest. Most of us can play from wherever we may be today. But if it’s really the absolute biggest of the lot you’re looking for then Powerball seems to be where it’s at for the time-being, though of course, the US Megamillions lottery may well be the next one to raise the world record bar; who knows?
As for the recent winners, they hail from California, Tennessee and Florida – though according to an interesting story from Forbes magazine, the Tennessee winner is being sued by a prisoner who had given the daughter of the family $20 to buy lottery tickets.
So quite where the next record-breaking story will come from remains to be seen. But in today’s world, it could be anyone from anywhere it seems; it could even be you perhaps! Just remember that your chances of winning are so small that it’s best just to dream for the time between your purchase of the tickets and the time the draw is made. Just keep an eye out for the biggest rollover lottery jackpot prizes and remember that it’s for fun only.