The Ultimate Guide to Japanese Lotteries!

theLotter is bringing you to the far east with our guide to Japanese lotteries! Get all the information you need to start playing and winning in Japan's most popular draws- Loto 6, Loto 7, and Mini Loto! These games are famous for offering some of the biggest prizes in the region, and you have the chance to win them when you purchase your lottery tickets online!

What Makes Japanese Lotteries Special?

Japanese lottery history

While most associate the island nation with their ancient and unique culture, and sophisticated cuisine, you don’t often hear about the incredibly rewarding lottery games which offer some of the biggest prizes in Asia! Japan has been staging lottery draws since the 15th century, when shrines and temples used them to raise funds for repairs and upkeep. The prize would be an amulet for happiness or good fortune. Centuries later, lottery enthusiasts are still purchasing Japanese lottery tickets, albeit for much bigger prizes!

 

Which Japanese Lottery Has the Best Prize-Winning Odds?

best odds

If you’re out to win, checking out your odds of winning a prize is definitely a step in the right direction. The lottery's odds are affected by two things: The amount of numbers you have to match and the guess range. The lower both of these are, the higher your chances are of winning. This is why Japan Mini Loto by far has the best jackpot winning odds at just 1 in 169,911. This is due to its small guess range and requirement of matching 5 numbers. Japan Loto 6 comes in second place with the odds of winning the top prize at 1 in 6,096,454 as a result of the lottery’s larger guess range of 1-43 and the need to match 6 numbers. It’s important to note that in most cases, the harder a game is to win, the bigger the prize is. So if you like playing for the big jackpots, Japan Loto 7 will be your best bet. While it does have the lowest odds of winning at 1 in 10,295,472, the game’s jackpot is significantly higher than Mini Loto and Loto 6, with a guaranteed starting jackpot of ¥600 million (approx. €5.1 million).

 

Are Lottery Winnings Taxed in Japan?

Are Japanese lotteries taxed

Fortunately for Japanese lottery prize winners, winnings are not taxed in Japan. The only time a tax is levied is when a winner gifts a relative or friend over ¥1.1 million in winnings over the course of a year, in which case a gift tax is applied. Although Japan won’t tax your winnings, be sure to check out local taxes that may apply in your country of residence.

Which Japanese Lotteries Are Offered at theLotter?

You can purchase official Japanese lottery tickets online at theLotter, to three of the country’s lotteries - Loto 6, Loto 7, and Mini Loto. Keep reading to find out how to play and win each one of these Japanese lotteries!

Japan Loto 6

Takerakuji introduced Loto 6 to Japan in October 2000. This new lottery was the first game that offered weekly prizes on par with Japan's Jumbo lottery 4-time yearly draws. With enormous prizes and new rollover system, the game instantly became a hit with local and international lottery fans, and is still one of the most popular draws to this day!

How Does Japan Loto 6 Work?

To participate in a Loto 6 draw , simply fill out your entry with six numbers from a guess range of 1-43. At the draw, a single bonus number is chosen from the same pool to create the 5+1 second division prize.

Loto 6 has a starting jackpot of ¥200 million (approximately €1.8 million) that can be won by matching all 6 winning numbers drawn. If not won, the top prize can roll over until it reaches the ¥600 million (approx €5.1 million) cap. In addition, lottery fans can win from the lottery’s four non-jackpot prize divisions.

Prize Match

Prize 1

6

Prize 2

5+1

Prize 3

5

Prize 4

4

Prize 5

3

Check to see if you’ve won a Japan Loto 6 prize by visiting the Japan Loto 6 results page after every draw. Loto 6 draws take place twice a week, every Monday and Thursday at 18:45 (GMT+9).


 

Japan Loto 7

Loto 7 is the latest lottery game to come out of Japan and by far the biggest out of the country’s 5 weekly lotteries. Since its founding in 2013, Loto 7 has caused a storm with its enormous jackpots that can reach a staggering ¥1 billion!

How to Play Japan Loto 7

Play Japan Loto 7 by selecting seven numbers from a guess range of 1-37. You can choose your numbers manually, or by utilising the Quick Pick option. At the draw, two bonus number will be selected from the same pool as the main numbers. These create the lottery's second, sixth, and seventh division prizes.


 

Winning the Loto 7 jackpot requires players to match all seven main numbers. The top prize starts at a ¥600 million (approx €5.1 million) and can roll over until it caps at a staggering ¥1 billion (approx €8.5 million)- the largest jackpot offered by any lottery in Japan!

Japan Loto 7 draws are staged every Friday at 18:45 (GMT+9).

Prize Match

Prize 1

7

Prize 2

6+1

Prize 3

6

Prize 4

5

Prize 5

4

Prize 6

3+1

Prize 7

3+2

Did you play in the last Loto 7 draw? Check out the Japan Loto 7 results page to see if you're a winner!

 

Japan Mini Loto

While Mini Loto may be the smallest lottery on the list, it definitely leaves a huge impact! Japan Mini Loto was launched in April 1999 as an easy-to-win game with fantastic lottery prizes. Thanks to the incredibly small guess range and numbers needed to win, the odds of winning the jackpot prize are so good, that draws routinely have more than one jackpot winner! If you enjoy playing Japan Mini Loto, you might also want to consider playing popular European lottery, Poland Mini Loto .

 

How to Play Japan Mini Loto?

Play Japan Mini Loto by selecting just 5 numbers from a range of 1-31. Like Loto 6, a bonus number is selected on the day of the draw from the same pool of numbers to form the second division 4+1 prize.

Mini Loto has a set jackpot of approximately ¥10 million (approx. €85k) that doesn't roll over, as well as three additional prize divisions with guaranteed winners every week. As Mini Loto does not have a carry-over system like Loto 6 and Loto 7, all excess prize money is distributed among the prize division winners. This in combination with the fact that the final prize amounts are dictated by ticket sale, that your lottery prize could potentially be bigger than the amount advertised!

When you play Mini Loto, the odds are already in your favour, so be sure to check out the Japan Mini Loto results shortly after every draw! Japan Mini Loto draws take place every Tuesday at 18:45 (GMT+9).

Prize Match

Prize 1

5

Prize 2

4+1

Prize 3

4

Prize 4

3

Fun Fact: The winning numbers Mini Loto's June 18, 2019 draw were 21, 24, 26, 27, and 28, and the bonus number was 22.

 

The Unique History of Japanese Lotteries

Lottery games go back centuries in Japan! One of the earliest records was in 1624 where it was written that visitors to a temple in the province of Ryuanji, current-day Osaka, would place a wooden tablet with their name written on it into a box between New Year’s Day and 7 January. On the 7th of January, a monk would choose three tablets from the box and give each of the winners an amulet for happiness and good fortune. Similar lottery games were staged throughout the Edo Period as a way for temples and shrines to obtain funds to repair and maintain their facilities. Japanese lottery history

As the practice became more popular, and private companies started staging lottery games as well, the Shogunate government repeatedly issued bans on lotteries as they "swayed the human heart", or made the public materialistic. However, the financially unstable government, was unable to provide assistance for temples and shrines, forcing them to permit the selling of lottery tickets. In 1842 the ruling Tenpo government totally outlawed the practice for the next  103 years.

Japan's modern lottery system launched in October 1945, three months after the end of World War II to prevent post-war inflation. In 1948, every prefecture was allowed to establish their own local lottery to raise money for the reconstruction of the devastation caused by the war. As the economic situation continued to recover, Japan launched it the national lottery, Takerakuji, in 1954 which was played alongside four other regional lotteries. It was only in the late 1980s when the number-select lotteries we're familiar with came to Japan, with Mini Loto launching in 1999, Loto 6 in 2000, and Loto 7 in 2013.

lottery kiosk japan

Through the centuries, lotteries have remained an indispensable way of aiding and maintaining prefectures across Japan without raising taxes on the people. When you play a Japanese lottery online, 45% of the proceeds are paid out to players, while 40% of the proceeds go to the local governments and the remaining 15% covers retail commission and administration expenses. According to a 2016 survey published on the Takarakuji website, people who have played the lottery at least once make up about 76.4% of Japan's population!

Start Playing Japanese Lotteries Today!

Japanese lotteries have been gaining worldwide popularity thanks to offering some of the biggest prizes in Asia, paired with great odds of winning them! You can now join in on the fun by purchasing your official Japanese lottery tickets online at theLotter for the chance to participate in three of the region's most rewarding lottery games!