Browse through these frequently asked questions about Thunderball to learn more about the game. Find common queries about how Thunderball works and the prizes you can win.
How to Play
How do you play Thunderball?
To play Thunderball, pick five main numbers from 1 to 39 and a Thunderball number between 1 and 14. Choose your own numbers or request a Lucky Dip, and select the draw(s) you want to enter.
When do draws take place?
Draws are held four times a week – on Tuesday, Wednesday, Friday and Saturday evenings at approximately 8:00pm.
What is the cut-off time for ticket sales?
You can play Thunderball up to 7:30pm on the day of a draw. Ticket sales will then reopen later for the next draw.
Can you enter multiple draws in advance?
You can enter up to four weeks in advance, making it possible to play 16 consecutive draws if you select Tuesday, Wednesday, Friday and Saturday. You can also play continuously by Direct Debit.
Can the same number be drawn as a main ball and the Thunderball?
Yes. The Thunderball is drawn from a separate set of numbers from 1 to 14, so you can select the same number twice on your playslip – once as a main ball and once as the Thunderball.
What is the cost of a ticket?
It costs £1 per line to play Thunderball – making it the National Lottery’s cheapest draw game.
Can you play Thunderball abroad?
You can take part in the game without being in the UK. Lottery concierge services allow you to choose numbers from around the world, then an agent based in the UK will buy an official ticket on your behalf. A copy of the ticket will be sent to you as proof of purchase.
How do you win prizes?
You win prizes by matching your selected numbers to the winning numbers.
How much can you win?
Prizes start at £3 for matching just the Thunderball and increase in value as you match more numbers. You win the jackpot of £500,000 if you match all five main numbers plus the Thunderball.
Is the jackpot shared if there is more than one winner?
No. All the prize amounts are fixed regardless of the number of winners. Prizes will only be capped in the very unlikely event that that the total value of all the payouts is more than four times the value of the entries submitted for the draw.
Does the jackpot roll over if there are no winners?
There are no rollovers in Thunderball. The jackpot is always £500,000.
What are the odds of winning?
The odds of winning a prize are 1 in 13. The odds of winning the jackpot are 1 in 8,060,598.
How long do you have to claim prizes?
If you win a Thunderball prize, you have 180 days to claim your money. If you come forward after this deadline, your ticket will no longer be valid.
Ask Our Experts
If you still have a query about Thunderball after reading these FAQs, don’t hesitate to contact us to ask for assistance. A member of the Lottery.co.uk team will be on hand to provide support.