Record Lotteries – Powerball & El Gordo

powerball and el gordo tickets
Ramesh Apte

Editor-In-Chief, Ramesh

Updated 16/11/2019

Categories: Informational

Lottery Jackpot Vs Lottery Pot

When it comes to online lotteries there are some that stick out more than others. Two of these are Powerball and El Gordo.

The first mentioned has the world’s largest jackpot and the other the world’s largest lottery pot. Each of these record-holding lotteries offers its players an array of interesting features.

But what’s the difference?

El Gordo and Powerball work very differently due to how they are structured. Powerball is a modern two drum jackpot lottery game where 5 numbers are drawn from one drum and a Powerball number is drawn from another.

By using this system you lower the odds of winning drastically but when you lower the odds, the jackpot amount skyrockets. That’s why some players have walked away with thousands of crores after winning the Powerball lottery.

El Gordo, on the other hand, was founded in 1812 compared to Powerballs origin date of 1992. The Spanish Christmas lottery runs on the original lotto system which is one barrel that draws out a complete number which gets selected as the winner.

But there are two drums in El Gordo as well but the second barrel is used to pick out the prize amount the selected winner will get. There is a total of 100 000 wooden balls with 5 digit numbers in the first drum and 1 807 balls in the second drum with the prize amounts.

The numbers drawn in the Spanish Christmas lotto can be repeated an endless amount of times depending on how many tickets the Spanish lottery commission think they can sell. Lately, the numbers have been repeated up to 170 times.

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Where can you win the most money?

But just how much money are we talking about? Well, in the table below you can see that the amounts of money that you can win from each lottery is quite massive!

Powerball Largest JackpotsAmount INREl Gordo Largest Lottery PotsAmount INR
$1.586 billion – January 13, 201611384 Crores2 380 million(expected) – 201918811 Crores
$768.4 million – March 27, 20195515 Crores2 380 million – 201818811 Crores
$750 million – August 23, 20175383 Crores2.380 million – 201718811 Crores
$590.5 million – May 18, 20134238 Crores2 310 million- 201618258 Crores
$365 million – February 18, 20062620 Crores2 240 million- 201517704 Crores

As you can see the amounts that you can win are no joke. The only difference is how much each player can win.


As you might have noticed by this point, these lotteries are vastly different, each having their own pros and cons. As they differ a lot so do their features as well. Below you will find some detailed comparisons on important data such as draws and odds of winning.

Each of these online lotteries has its own charm!


El Gordo is a seasonal lottery meaning it occurs once a year and the draw is on the 22nd of December each year. You could compare it to one of the many Indian state lottery bumpers except that this is an international bumper where everybody is welcome to play.

Powerball is a weekly lottery that is played Wednesday and Saturday every week at 22:59 ET (Thursdays and Sundays 08:29 IST).

Odds of Winning

The big difference between these two mega lotteries is the odds to win. The Powerball lottery has one clear winner, the person who claims the jackpot whereas El Gordo has lots of winners.

When I say lots of winners, I mean A LOT! The jackpot is a mere €4 million (≈31 crores) but each number gets the whole jackpot amount meaning it is paid out up to 170 times. This makes the total jackpot €680 million.

Lots of winners mean higher odds of winning but how much higher are they exactly?

Odds of winning the highest prize:

  • The Powerball Jackpot: 1 in 292,201,338
  • El Gordo Jackpot: 1 in 100 000

As you can see, there’s a huge difference.

Ticket Price

Buying lottery tickets for both games from India is easy thanks to all the great online lottery agents and bookmakers available. You can check out my trusted lottery site reviews to find one that suits you.

The average Powerball tickets costs ₹270 whereas the average El Gordo ticket costs around ₹19758.

The El Gordo tickets are divided into 10 shares and usually, most Indian players just buy one decimal for around ₹1978. With your decimal ticket you get 1/10 of the prize.

This may sound like an exaggerated amount when compared to the Powerball price of ₹270 but if you compare the odds of winning the jackpot you can understand why. In fact, El Gordo tickets also have a 1 in 10 chance of paying your money back.

So, in the end, when playing El Gordo your risk of losing is much smaller and your chance of winning is much higher!

So why isn’t everyone playing the Spanish Christmas lottery all the time?

Well, as the name entitles and as mentioned earlier the draw is once a year so you can’t play it all the time. Furthermore, you are putting more money on the line which makes some players more hesitant.

Check out my article on online lottery ticket prices in India if you want to learn more about average ticket prices.

My verdict – What to play and when to play

Now that we have factually compared these record-holding lotteries I thought that I would share my opinion as well as my best tips and tricks.

First of all, I want to say these are my two favourite lottos featured here at Online Lotteries and I am not alone as is evident by Powerballs jackpot size and El Gordos lottery pot size. Just look at any lottery and see how much they payout and you’ll get an idea of just how popular they are. These two, very popular!

My best El Gordo tips

This is my “friendship” lottery. I have a lottery syndicate called The Yaars which is composed of I and my 9 closest friends. Not all the guys in my syndicate play lotteries regularly but we do play El Gordo every year.

This is a great way to play El Gordo and if you want to know more about creating your own take a look at my lottery syndicate article.

When you win you will win with your friends just imagine sharing 316 crores with your friends, I mean there is a 1 in 100 000 chance that you will!

Even though it is in Spanish, it is very fun to watch the draw with your yaars on the 22nd of December. There are several live streams available online.

My best Powerball tips

When it comes to Powerball, syndicates are a good idea as well but might be a little harder to make your own. Luckily almost all lotto sites featured here at Online Lotteries offer Powerball syndicates.

The more tickets you have the less astronomical the odds of winning the jackpot become. My second Powerball tip is when to play. To try to maximize your chances of winning big you should wait so the jackpot rolls over a few times, I usually start playing after 6.

If you do, you will win a minimum jackpot of $100 million while you still have exactly the same odds as if the jackpot was $40 million.

In the end, you are free to enjoy both. Take a chance to win part of the 18811 crores given away on the 22nd of December or take the opportunity to win up to 11384 crores for yourself, twice a week, every week!

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