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How to Play Lotto

Find out how to play Lotto to put yourself in with a chance of winning a prize. From choosing your numbers to paying for your tickets, the Lotto players guide below will steer you through what to do, starting with the numbers you pick.

Picking your numbers

Pick six numbers from 1-59

Select six numbers from 1 to 59. You can pick your own numbers or play a Lucky Dip if you would prefer to be given a random set of numbers – the chances of winning are the same whichever option you choose.

A Bonus Ball is also drawn in Lotto but you do not select a Bonus Ball when you play, as the aim is to match it with one of the six numbers you do pick.

Choosing your draws

Select your draw day

There are two Lotto draws a week - one on Saturday at 7.45pm and one on Wednesday at 8.00pm. Choose whether to enter just one draw or both by marking your preferred option on the playslip or telling the retailer.

If you are playing online, you just need to select the relevant day. If you take out a subscription you’ll play the draws you specified every week until your subscription ends.

Choose Weeks

Choose how many weeks

You need to specify how many weeks in advance you want to play, up to a maximum of four. It is therefore possible to enter up to eight consecutive draws if you play on both Wednesday and Saturday.

When playing online, you can also set up a Direct Debit to play on a continual basis. You can change your numbers and draw days at any time while the Direct Debit is active.

How many draws to play

Purchase your tickets

The final step is to pay for your tickets, and it costs £2 per entry to play Lotto. If you play in a store, you will be given a paper ticket that you will need to keep safe, as it is your only proof of entry.

Your numbers are saved in your account when you play online so you don’t need to worry about keeping your ticket safe. You can view your numbers by logging in to your account.

How to Win Lotto

To win Lotto prizes, the numbers on your ticket must match those drawn in the winning line. Match two of the main numbers to win a free Lucky Dip; the prizes increase in value as you match more numbers. Head over to the Prizes and Odds page to find out about all the payouts on offer.

How Free Lucky Dips Work

If you match two numbers, it is easy to claim your free Lucky Dip. If you have bought your ticket from a store, simply take your entry to any National Lottery retailer within 180 days of the winning draw. You will then be given the choice over whether to receive your Lucky Dip for the next Wednesday or Saturday draw.

When you win a Lucky Dip online, you will be notified by email and the Lucky Dip will be automatically entered into the next Lotto draw. You will then be given the chance to decide whether you would like any future Lucky Dips to be entered into the next draw, the next Wednesday draw or the next Saturday draw. Go to the Lucky Dips page for more information, and check out the How to Claim section to learn more about claiming prizes.