Spanish Christmas El Gordo Navidad Lottery

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The Spanish lottery is known as Lotería de Navidad in the country of Spain. Nearly 90% of Spaniards participate in the Christmas lottery every year. The first ever Christmas lottery was held on 1763 in Madrid after the idea was suggested by a minister who has seen another lottery draw in Italy. It was introduced to generate revenue during Spain’s war with Portugal. The very first draw was a five ball draw.

In 1811, during the invasion of Span by Napoleon, the lottery was used to generate money to fund the war. However, people’s interest in the lottery fell because they did not want to generate money for war.

The Spanish parliament has a voting with regard to the Christmas lottery and it was officially launched in the year 1812 and has been organized every year since. This is the second longest running lottery in the world. The name ‘Sorteo de Navidad’ was used for this lottery for the first time in the year 1892. The lottery was introduced by the Spanish Public Administration. This is now known as Loterías y Apuestas del Estado. Most people know this lottery as the El Gordo, which is actually the name of the first tier prize, not the lottery itself.

The prize of the lottery begins at £2.1 billion goes up to £4 million approximately for first-tier winners. The draws happen every year on December 22nd.


How to play Spanish Christmas El Gordo Navidad Lottery

One of the reasons for the popularity of the Spanish Lottery is that the first tier prize, which is the jackpot prize is distributed among hundreds of winners as opposed to lotteries such as Powerball that hand over the entire jackpot to one person. There are a total of 17 different prize pools in the Spanish Christmas lottery.

The format of the Spanish Christmas lottery is also unique and different from most international lotteries. The format follows that of a raffle as oppose to a regular lottery draw. For the lottery, five different numbers from a line are sold to the buyers. These five numbers are drawn on every 22nd of December. It is also possible for over a dozen people to get the same winning numbers and take home the jackpot.

Therefore, winners can come from across the country during the Spanish Christmas Lotteries.

Who can play Spanish Christmas El Gordo Navidad Lottery

Players have to be 18 years of age to participate in the lotteries in Spain. The Spanish Christmas lottery can be played by anyone in the world. However, there is a rule in the Spanish law that states the lottery wins from Spain must stay within the state boundaries. Therefore, it is advisable for players to check with their country laws.


The odds of winning a Spanish Christmas El Gordo Navidad Lottery

Another feature that makes the El Gordo popular is that the lottery has very high odds of winning. The odds of winning this lottery is 1 in 100,000. This is much better than most lotteries in the world. For example, the odds of winning the EuroMillions 1:116531800.

Payments and Costs for Spanish Christmas El Gordo Navidad Lottery

The prizes of the Spanish lottery tickets depends on the tickets that players purchase. These decide the prize sharing that players have to do. In order to purchase tickets with 1/100th sharing, the price is €4.99. This is the lowest price in the set. The prize keeps increasing until it reaches €249.99.

Claiming the prize money

All Spanish lotteries have the same process for claiming the prize money. Prizes can be claimed at the lottery offices or online. For those who have won online, money will be transferred to the registered account. However, websites have different rules on the ceiling amount that can be transferred. It is advised that the players refer to their respective website.

For those who are claiming at the office, the first step is to take the ticket for checking. The ticket will be verified by an electronic machine. Once it has been confirmed that the ticket has won, the machine will also show the amount that has been won. If the machine shows the ticket to be invalid, irrespective of the numbers drawn, the ticket will be void.

After verification, any prize that is 600 euros or below will be paid directly by the lottery offices. For large amounts, the winning ticket will have to be taken to the winner’s bank. The bank will copy the ticket, sign a receipt on the ticket and keep the original ticket with it. The bank will then contact the lottery office to confirm the winning and the validity of the ticket. Once this is confirmed, the prize money will be transferred to the winner’s bank account. The prize must be claimed within the next 60-90 days.

Tax payments for Spanish Christmas El Gordo Navidad Lottery

The Spanish lotteries charge 20% tax on lotteries for all prize monies above €2500. There is also an additional tax to be paid if prize money is transferred outside Spanish borders. Players playing from another country must check with their country laws to ensure that they can play the lotteries in Spain. Similarly, they should also consult with an attorney since the Spanish lotteries require that the prize money stays in the country.


The Spanish Christmas lotteries are part of Spanish lotteries. All Spanish lotteries are managed centrally and the money for good causes goes from the central fund. The Spanish lotteries have always contributed to good causes. The revenue from the lotteries helped the country rebuild itself after the Spanish war. 55% of the revenue from lotteries goes back to the prizes and the balance amount goes to the state pool.


The Spanish Christmas Lotteries (El Gordo) is the most popular game in the world and the second longest played game. It will always remain a favorite among the player.