Irish Lottery

The Irish National Lottery was launched in the Republic of Ireland in March 1987, with its draw game played for the first time on 16th April 1988. The odds of winning the jackpot, which is guaranteed to be worth at least €2 million, are much better than for many of the world’s other big lotteries, standing at just 1 in 10,737,573.

How to play the Irish National Lotto

The Irish Lottery requires players to choose six numbers from a pool of 47 and the jackpot is won by matching all six. The game is drawn on Wednesday and Saturday evenings and, if you don’t want to select your own numbers, you can take advantage of the Quick Pick option and have your numbers generated at random.

Prizes are won by matching anything from two main numbers and the Bonus Ball. The Bonus Ball is drawn after the six main numbers and can boost a player’s winnings if they match three, four or five main numbers. There are eight prize levels in all, which are detailed below:



Odds of Winning

6 Numbers


1 in 10,737,573

5 main numbers + Bonus Ball

Estimated €100,000

1 in 1,789,596

5 Numbers


1 in 44,740

4 Numbers + Bonus Ball


1 in 17,896

4 Numbers


1 in 918

3 Numbers + Bonus Ball


1 in 688

3 Numbers

Estimated €9

1 in 54

2 Numbers + Bonus Ball

€3 Scratchcard

1 in 72

The odds of winning any Irish Lotto prize are 1 in 29

If the jackpot is not won, it is rolled over and added to the jackpot fund for the next Irish Lottery draw.

Claiming Prizes

Irish Lottery players have 90 days from the date of the draw to claim their prize, with winnings being forfeited after the deadline passes. As with other lottery games, buying Irish Lottery tickets online is a good way of ensuring that you don’t accidentally forget to claim a prize and miss out on an incredible payout.

Big Irish Lotto Winners

The biggest Irish Lottery win so far was worth €18.9 million and was claimed by a syndicate of sixteen workers in June 2008.