European lotteries are varied when it comes to where and how they operate. Some lotteries are sold solely in certain countries or regions, allowing only locals to play and win. Other lotteries, such as EuroJackpotand EuroMillions, operate similarly to American multi-state lotteries, and are sold in most European countries, making them bigger and more exciting. When it comes to expansion, El Gordo de la Primitiva from Spaintook it one step further - crossing the Atlantic all the way to the Dominican Republic! Learn more about the expansion and growth of those beloved European lottery games.
EuroJackpot Reaches Northern and Eastern Europe
Eurojackpot is a pan-European lottery that includes the participation of many Eastern European countries. Launched in March 2012, EuroJackpot is sold in 14 participating countries today, all playing the same weekly lottery draw: Croatia, Denmark, Estonia, Finland, Germany, Iceland, Italy, Latvia, Lithuania, the Netherlands, Norway, Slovenia, Spain and Sweden. EuroJackpot has a €10 million starting jackpot, and a jackpot cap of €90 million!
To win the jackpot, players have to correctly match five main numbers drawn from a drum with a guess range of 1 to 50 and two additional numbers from a range of 1 to 8. Eurojackpot draws are held every Friday in Helsinki, Finland. The previous EuroJackpot jackpot record was worth €57 million, and lottery fans are now waiting for a new record to be determined, as the jackpot stands on €60 million, but is yet to be won! EuroJackpot is considered one of Europe's biggest lotteries, despite being only two years old!
When looking at Eurojackpot’s rapid growth and history, we know that even though it was formed in 2012, the idea of it was brought up for the first time six years earlier, in 2006. The initial proposal suggested a lottery that would compete with Europe's leader - EuroMillions. Many countries were excited by the aspect of creating another multi-national lottery.
The originally participating countries were Germany, Finland, Denmark, Slovenia, Italy, the Netherlands, and Estonia. The lottery was officially founded in 2011 and the first draw took place on March 23rd, 2012. Later in June that year, Spain joined EuroJackpot to make a total of eight participating European countries. On February 2013, Croatia, Iceland, Latvia, Lithuania, Norway, and Sweden joined the EuroJackpot as well, making the list of participating countries grew from eight to fourteen.
14 of the 50 European countries makes 28% of Europe participate in this lottery, and an estimated 244 million potential EuroJackpot players from Europe alone. This number is about to grow next month thanks to the addition of three new countries to the roster; Hungary, Czech Republic, and Slovakia will join the multi-national lottery on the upcoming October. Alongside the expansion to a total of 17, EuroJackpot is updating its rules to accommodate for the bigger player
As of October 2014, the guess range of the two additional numbers will grow from 1-8 to 1-10.. While this change is seemingly a minor one, it does slightly lower the winning oddsr. To compensate their fans and regular players, EuroJackpot will increase the prizes for the first and second prize categories!
EuroMillion Takes Western Europe Over
The big European competitor for EuroJackpot is the EuroMillions, which has the advantage of eight years of seniority. EuroMillions was founded in 2004 and held its first draw on February 13th that year. EuroMillions has nine European participating countries: United Kingdom, France, Austria, Belgium, Ireland, Luxemburg, Portugal and Spain playing for the jackpot, which starts at €15 million.
EuroMillions’ jackpot and can roll over all the way up to the €190 million jackpot cap – which is also the highest EuroMillions jackpot to be won. To win Europe's most popular lottery, players purchase a ticket and pick five main numbers from 1 to 50, and two additional numbers, called Lucky Stars, from a pool of 1 to 11. EuroMillions has one-up on EuroJackpot, with two weekly draw held in the company's headquarters in Paris on Tuesdays and Fridays.
While EuroMillions is the currently biggest European lottery, offering the highest prizes, it did not always rule the continent. The multi-national giant was the initiative of several official lotteries: France (Française des Jeux), Spain (Loterías y Apuestas Del Estado) and UK (Camelot). In the lottery’s early days, the draw was weekly. Several months later, in October 2014, the national lotteries of Austria, Belgium, Ireland, Luxembourg, Portugal and Switzerland joined as well, and EuroMillions as we know it today was created. The addition of more European countries helped EuroMillions expand to two weekly draws since 2011, and develop its famous massive jackpot prizes!
A total of 218 million Europeans, representing 18% of the European countries, can play EuroMillions in their country nowadays. To increase the excitement, EuroMillions hosts several Superdraws a year, which operate like the standard draws do, but with a bigger jackpot that starts at €100 million instead of €15 million! To make things even better, local EuroMillions branches, such as France and UK, offer a bi-weekly raffle for additional prizes between all the lottery tickets purchased in the country.
El Gordo de La Primitiva conquers The Dominican Republic
Originated in Spain and operated by Loterías y Apuestas de Estado, El Gordo de La Primitiva has been around since 1993 and up until recently, operated in Spain alone. The lottery is also available in The Dominican Republic, where it operates under the name "El Gordo Iberoamericano", which means: El Gordo Collaboration.
The El Gordo de La Primitiva starting jackpot is €5 million, and it has rolled over all the way to €33 million in 2011! In the Dominican Republic, El Gordo Iberoamerican has a starting jackpot worth $6.48 million that can grow up to $51.87 million. The rules are simple: Players choose five main numbers from a pool of 1 to 54, and an additional number from a guess range of 0-9. The additional number is required to win the jackpot, but can also boost secondary prize categories.
It took almost twenty years for El Gordo to cross the Atlantic Ocean all the way to The Dominican Republic. The game, which started as a monthly draw on October 21st, 2013 and was played on the last Sunday of every month, has come a long way since.
Four years after the first draw, the lottery's popularity and ticket sales were high enough to turn the monthly draw into a weekly one, held every Sunday. The minimum jackpot of €5 million was set only later in 2005, and increased winning odds by adding prize categories to create a total of eight prize categories. In February, 2013, El Gordo de La Primitiva set sail to the Dominican Republic and became the first Spanish lottery to travel outside of Europe!
The Dominican Republic El Gordo draw is also held every Sunday, and is organized by the local lottery institution. Since the happy collaboration between the two countries began, the game is available to a total of 57 million people.
In the near future, the Spanish El Gordo de La Primitiva plans to further expand to other Latin American countries. Apart from spreading the game globally, El Gordo hopes to tighten the bonds of culture and brotherhood that already exist between those Latin countries. EuroMillions and EuroJackpot can keep on ruling the continent as the two most popular games in Europe, El Gordo de La Primitiva has its eye on a different crowd.
European Lottery Tickets Online
While none of these lotteries sell their tickets outside of Europe or the Dominican Republic, there’s no reason for you to buy a plane ticket or consider immigrating just yet. theLotter launched in 2002 with the sole purpose of selling those local lottery tickets globally. We do so by operating local offices all over the world and purchase only 100% official tickets for our customers. The tickets are kept in a vault at our local office and the money you win is transferred directly to your account on the site!
So far, theLotter has transferred over $30 million in wins to players from all across the globe. Enjoy all the prizes European lotteries have to offer directly from your computer or mobile device and buy lottery tickets online today!