Christmas is approaching, and in Spain that means one thing – the excitement of El Gordo, the largest Christmas lottery in the world! It’s a day when the whole country stops for a moment to follow the results of the draw. Let’s remember that for Spaniards it’s not just a game, it’s part of a culture and tradition that has survived even the most difficult times.
Why is El Gordo so special?
El Gordo (official name is El Sorteo Extraordinario de Navidad) is not only one of the oldest lotteries in the world, but also the one with the largest prize pool. It’s a game with more than 200 years of tradition, dating back to 1812. The draw takes place on December 22 in Madrid, and its uniqueness lies among other things. In the way of announcing the winners. Students from Madrid’s San Ildefonso School sing the numbers drawn, creating an unforgettable performance.
A lottery for everyone
Each El Gordo ticket contains ten five-digit numbers and is priced at €200. However, “tens” (decimos) for €20 are also available, making the lottery accessible to a wide range of people. It is worth mentioning that most adult Spaniards take part in this holiday tradition. And the amounts are impressive – the main prize is as much as €4 million! Prizes are distributed among holders of whole series of tickets and individual coupons, which greatly increases the chances of winning.
It is worth noting that amounts up to €40,000 are tax-free in Spain. For higher winnings, a 21% tax applies on the amount exceeding the said €40,000.
Where to buy an EL Gordo coupon?
The coupons are available online at the official Loterias y Apuestas del Estado website and at points of sale. The most famous collector’s office is Doni Manolity in Madrid – it is famous for its numerous winnings, and standing in line for a coupon is a kind of attraction.
El Gordo is not only a chance to win, but above all a unique atmosphere and part of Spanish culture. It’s a time when shared hope and joy unite people, creating unique memories.
If you are planning to spend Christmas in Spain, we encourage you to join this wonderful tradition. Who knows, maybe you’ll be the one celebrating the win of the year?