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Catalonia unlucky in Spanish lotto

Catalans took home almost 34 million this year but spent 364 million on tickets


22 December 2017 11:42 PM


ACN | Barcelona

One of the oldest lotteries in the world, playing El Gordo (in Spanish) or la Grossa de Nadal (in Catalan) each year in December is a 200-year old tradition dating back to 1812. The Spanish Christmas lotto got its name (‘The Fat One’) from its golden pot of over 2 billion euros; the way the prize is split is complex and leads to friends, families, companies, even entire towns going in on a share, and, if luck strikes, hitting the jackpot.

No such town was in Catalonia this year, but, it did not go home empty-handed either. Almost €34 million in total lotto money (€33,948,000) was won in the Catalan territory from the top 5 numbers, most notably in the town of Sort, a popular spot for buying the tickets (its name means ‘Luck’ in Catalan). This, compared to the over €364 million that Catalans spent on their chance to win in 2017, an approximate average of €48 per person.

While the money spent on tickets is still a significant sum, it has actually decreased (by 7.4%) since 2016. Catalonia is the only territory in the Spanish state where this happened, and it could have something to do with Catalonia’s own end of year bit lottery, La Grossa, sales for which have increased by 25% this year. Results for La Grossa (translated as ‘The Fat Lady’) are revealed on December 31. 


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  • Two schoolgirls from the Sant Ildefons sing out the second biggest winning lottery number for the Spanish Christmas lotto (by Javier Barbancho / ACN)