For every £1 spent on the UK National Lottery:
- 45p is returned in prizes for that draw. See below.
- 28p is added to the National Lottery Distribution Fund, which is a pool of money allocated to arts, sports and charities that bid for it.
- 12p is given to the UK government in Lottery Tax (i.e. it goes to Customs and Excise as betting duty).
- 5p is kept by Camelot Group plc for running costs, profit and their Director's excessive and obscene bonuses.
- 5p is kept by the retailer.
- 5p is reserved for future Super Draws and Instant Win scratchcard games.
How the Lottery prizes are worked out
The total prize pool for each draw is 45% of the total cost of the tickets sold for that draw. This 45% figure is rounded down to the nearest 10p before further calculations on it are performed. All 3-match prizes are fixed at £10 each and are subtracted from the total prize pool. The approximate allocation of the remaining money (the "Pools Fund") is as follows:
6-match (Jackpot) Prize Pool (Avgs: Sat - £2.2m, Wed - £1.8m)
52% of the Pools Fund plus any rollover from the previous draw's unwon jackpot prize pool. An occasional Super Draw, funded from 5% of the ticket sales of previous lotteries, will either top-up by adding a fixed amount or guarantee a minimum jackpot prize pool. If there is no jackpot winner, then the entire jackpot prize pool is "rolled over" to the next draw. This can happen a maximum of 3 times - if there is a 4th consecutive draw where the jackpot wasn't won, the jackpot prize pool is shared amongst the 5+bonus winners of the 4th draw or amongst the 5-match winners of the 4th draw if there are no such 5+bonus winners.
5+bonus-match Prize Pool
16% of the Pools Fund plus the 4th consecutive unwon jackpot prize pool as detailed above. If there are no 5+bonus winners and it's not the 4th consecutive unwon jackpot, then the 5+bonus prize pool is added to the jackpot prize pool for the same draw.
4-match Prize Pool
22% of the Pools Fund plus the 5-match Prize Pool if there are no 5-match winners. If there are no 4-match winners, then the 4-match Prize Pool is shared equally amongst the 3-match winners in addition to their standard £10 prize.