What are the Spanish lotteries?

by Lorraine Williamson
Spanish lottery

There are various types of Spanish lotteries throughout the year. In fact, there is some kind of lottery or lotto game available every single day. However, InSpain.News take a look at the most popular, especially at this time of the year.

The Spanish National Lottery

The National Lottery (which has been in existence since 1763) is an official and legal lottery issued by the Government of Spain. Therefore, it has a full guarantee due to this endorsement.

In addition to the twice-weekly National Lotteries, there are other weekly, monthly, and special lotteries throughout the year.

Most well-known Spanish Lotteries

The 3 most popular, well-known ones are, the Summer El Gordo Draw, and the 2 festive ones. These are El Gordo Christmas Raffle, and El Niño Raffle.

The twice-weekly raffles are on a Saturday (National Lottery), and on a Thursday (Thursday Lottery). The Saturday raffle has higher value winnings and costs more at €12 for each ticket. The Thursday Lottery is only €6 per ticket, but with a total prize pot of €12.6 million, compared to the €42 million pot for the Saturday lottery.

There is also a monthly draw which is usually the first Saturday of every month.

In fact, there is some type of lottery or lotto game taking place every day of the week in Spain. But the following are the most famous

El Gordo (the fat one) del Verano (The Summer El Gordo)

With €140 million worth of prize money, it is drawn in the first week of July.

El Gordo Christmas Raffle

El Gordo Christmas Raffle takes place on December 22nd. It is very traditional and almost everyone has a ticket to see if they have luck at Christmas. El Gordo prize fund is worth over €2.52 billion. You can purchase a ticket for €20 up until 5.00 pm on December 21.

Cogesa Expats

What is beautiful, and unique about this raffle is that a boy or a girl of St. Ildefonso´s school extracts a ball from the bowl of numbers and at the same time, another child takes one from the bowl of prizes. Both draws are celebrated as they are sang by another two children.

El Niño

El Niño draw takes place on Friday January 6, and has prizes worth around €700 million in total. The deadline for purchasing your chance at winning something from El Niño is 5.00 pm on January 5. Each ticket costs €20.

For these Lottery draws, if you have special “lucky” numbers you want included on your ticket, you are advised to purchase well in advance of the draw.


As with everything that a massive amount of people are participating in, the chance of scams is equally great. These criminal gangs use fake websites, fake email addresses, and send false information via SMS and email etc with clickable links.

In most cases, the scammers will contact you advising you have won a lottery prize, but to collect your winnings, an amount must be paid in advance for taxes, bank charges, administrative costs etc. Also very common, is for the scammer to put a time limit on your ability to make the payment otherwise you will lose the prize. This is simply to create urgency, and make you act without thinking or checking.

ElGordo.com advises that if you are offered “prizes” that are apparently related to the Spanish Lottery, “DO NOT PAY any amount”. This is not the procedure that ElGordo would follow.

If you have been on the receiving end of such an attempted scam, you should contact the police. The Spanish Police have already arrested and brought to justice some members of criminal gangs that were operating from within Spain.

Also read: Spanish festive sweets and treats

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