Regulated Israeli lottery games have been around since the 50’s, and they’ve expanded into multi-million dollar ventures. This is especially the case with the Israel New Lotto, which has been offering some really big jackpots over the past few years. Sure these jackpots haven’t reached the record sizes of the Euro Millions or Mega Millions, but they are large enough to get the attention of over half of Israel’s population, as well as many international players. So it’s definitely worth taking a closer look at the New Lotto, along with the other Israeli lottery games.
Israel New Lotto
One of the most favorable aspects of the New Lotto is that there’s such a small number pool to choose from. You pick 6 numbers from 1 through 37, and you choose a single Strong (Chazak) Number from 1 through 8. To win the top prize, you need to match all six main numbers and the Strong number. With the low amount of digits you have to choose from, the New Lotto offers players reasonable 1 in 18,598,272 odds of winning the jackpot.
Moving to the jackpot’s monetary value, the prize’s starting point is NIS 4,000,000 ($1,155,200 USD). Of course, the jackpot normally grows much larger than this, as can be seen by a $20 million USD jackpot where the winning couple almost lost their ticket (we’ll get to this story later). In addition to the jackpot, there is also a 2nd prize worth NIS $500,000, and players win this by matching the six main numbers without the Strong number.
Other Israeli Lottery Games
Aside from the New Lotto, there are also several other Israeli lotto games such as Hishgad, 123, and Pais 777. Here’s a brief description of each game:
Hishgad – A scratch card game where players scratch off lots of fun and colorful symbols to win cash.
123 – This is a daily Pick 3 game that offers players prizes every day.
Pais 777 – A keno-style game where players select seven numbers from 1-70 in an effort to win money.
Israel’s Biggest Lottery Jackpot
By April 13th, 2010, the New Lotto jackpot had already far exceeded the biggest lottery prize in the country’s history. The top prize was worth $20 million (NIS 74,000,000), and there was a winning ticket on the 13th. The only problem was that nobody stepped forward to claim the prize because the winners didn’t realize they’d won.
As is turns out, the ticket was buried under a pile of papers at an anonymous couple’s house. After finding the ticket, this couple had the sense to check the numbers and find out this ticket was worth $20 million. Immediately after discovering they had a winner, the couple took their ticket to the nearest shop so it could be checked.
Following their huge win, the couple showed up to the Israeli National Lottery headquarters wearing welders masks. The reason behind this was to conceal their identities, which is pretty common in many countries so everybody and their brother doesn’t come looking for a piece of the prize.