Spain prepares for grand Christmas Lottery El Gordo 2023 on Friday

by Lorraine Williamson
Christmas lottery

The Spanish Christmas LotteryEl Gordo’ (the fat one) is held annually on 22 December. It starts at 9.00 am and depending on the pace of the prizes fall, the lottery will end around 1.00 pm. 

The venue for the draw is once again the Teatro Real in Madrid with the doors opening an hour before the start: 8.00 am Spanish time. The draw can be watched live on Spanish TV channel RTVE.es and other TV channels.  

Children from the local San Ildefonso school, aged between 8 and 14, will reveal the winning numbers. The 40 children take turns (in pairs) to sing the winning number and the corresponding prize amount, all of which is broadcast live to the millions of players that tune in every year.

This year, the total prize money amounts to €2.59 billion. 

Where are the luckiest provinces?

Since the very first El Gordo draw took place in 1812, there have been winners from almost every region of Spain. However, lottery ticket holders living in Madrid and Barcelona are by far the luckiest when it comes to winning the top prize.

  • Madrid (90 times)
  • Barcelona (57 times)
  • Valencia (25 times)
  • Alicante (20 times)
  • Sevilla (17 times)
  • Cádiz (16 times)
  • Asturias, Málaga, Murcia and Vizcaya (15 times)
  • Zaragoza (13 times)
  • A Coruña (12 times)
  • Guipúzcoa (11 times)
  • Granada (10 times)
  • Badajoz (9 times)
  • Cantabria and Balearic Islands (8 times)
  • Córdoba (7 times)
  • Jaén, Las Palmas and Tenerife (6 times)
  • Almería, Burgos, Navarra, Lleida, Lugo and Palencia (5 times)
  • Albacete, Cáceres, Castellón, Segovia, La Rioja, Leon, Toledo and Valladolid (4 times)
  • Alava, Ciudad Real, Cuenca, Huesca, Pontevedra and Soria (3 times)
  • Girona, Guadalajara and Teruel (2 times)
  • Huelva, Ourense and Salamanca (1 time)

Meanwhile, according to El Gordo, players from the following provinces have yet to win the top prize;

  • Ávila
  • Huelva
  • Orense
  • Tarragona
  • Zamora
  • Ceuta and Melilla

What are the most popular numbers in the Christmas lottery?  

Many Spaniards are guided by superstition or the most important dates of the year when deciding on some number when buying their lottery tickets.  Others, on the contrary, are guided by statistics.  And although the odds are exactly the same, it appears that some numbers have been drawn more often than others in the past. As published on the official El Gordo website, the following numbers are the most common final digits purchased;

  • 5 (32 times)
  • 4 and 6 (27 times)
  • 8 (23 times)
  • 0, 3, and 7 (21 times)
  • 9 (16 times)
  • 2 (13 times)
  • 1 (8 times)
The following numbers are the most common final two digits;
  • 85 (7 times)
  • 57 (6 times)
  • 58, 64, 65, 66, 75 (6 times)
  • 00, 03, 14, 15, 40, 44, 53, 56, 73, 76, 92, 95, 97 (4 times)

Repeated winning numbers

It is worth noting that some combinations of numbers have won more often. These exact same numbers have been repeated twice. Could it happen again?

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  • 15.640 (In 1956 and in 1978)
  • 20.297 (In 1903 and in 2006)

The most common winning two-digit combinations were 85, seven times; 57, six times, and 64, 65, 75 and 97 have won first prize five times each. Two-digit combinations that have won the jackpot on four different occasions are: 15, 95, 58, 40 and 90. 

Less fortunate numbers 

However, there are also numbers that are less fortunate in this festive draw and have not yet won a first prize. This applies to the thousands 27, 37, 39, 41, 44, 51, 64, from 67 to 70, from 73 to 75, 77 and from 80 to 99, 86 excepted. Also, first prize has not fallen in the ranges 09, 10, 13, 21, 25, 31, 34, 41, 42, 43, 51, 54, 59, 67, 78, and 82.

If you haven´t already bought your ticket, sales end this evening.

Beware of scams!

InSpain.news often bring you details of various scams. As with all scammers, they like to prey on innocent, unsuspecting individuals. Consequently, the organiser of the Spanish Lottery, has issued a warning to the public. Criminal groups, comprised of individuals from various nationalities, have been actively engaging in deceptive practices.

Modus operandi of fraudulent groups

These criminals exhibit a remarkable ability to operate worldwide, utilising a range of deceptive tactics. They employ mobile phones, PO boxes, provisional or false addresses (sometimes even impersonating official Spanish organisations). They may also us names and logos similar to “el Gordo,” “la Primitiva,” “European Lottery Commission,” among others.

The scam

The typical strategy employed by these criminal groups involves contacting individuals, falsely notifying them that they have won a substantial prize, even if they have never participated in any legitimate draw. The catch, however, is that the supposed winners must pay a certain amount for taxes, bank costs, delivery fees, insurance processing, or other fabricated charges before they can claim their prize. The fraudsters often create a sense of urgency, warning victims that the deadline for payment is imminent and that their right to collect the prize is on the verge of expiration.

What to do if you suspect a scam
  • never send money
  • do not click on any links
  • never reply to an email or message if you suspect it is a scam
  • do not give any financial or personal information
  • report the incident to the police

Editor´s note: All El Gordo players must be 18 years of age or over.

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