Why should you play bingo instead of the UK lottery?

  • Updated
  • By Max Wright
bingo vs lottery

The lottery is played by millions of people every single week. In fact, according to a recent study, 1 in 2 adults in the UK and Ireland regularly take part in the lottery. Despite the chance of winning the lottery being so low, it’s still an attractive game for millions of people because of the (minuscule) potential for a life-changing win.

If you look at how they are played, lottery and bingo are actually pretty similar games. In both games, you buy your ticket and match randomly drawn numbers to the ones on your ticket. Match enough numbers and you win a prize. Match them all to win the jackpot. It’s pretty exciting stuff!

However, there are key differences that mean your chances of winning a game of online bingo each time you play are vastly higher than your chances of winning the lottery once in your entire life. Here’s why.

Less in it, so more win it

The national lottery is played by people, well… nationally. As 1 in 2 UK adults play regularly, that’s an average of 33 million people buying tickets. If the odds of winning the jackopot were just based on how many players there were, it would already be incredibly unlikely that you'd win once in your life. Buying multiple tickets wouldn't do much to help your chances either.

The odds of winning a game of bingo are determined by the number of people playing and the number of tickets they buy. For example, if 10 people play and they each buy 1 ticket, that’s a 1 in 10 chance that you will win. You can affect the odds in your favour by simply buying more tickets, which will noticably increase your chances of winning.

It sounds pretty obvious, but when you increase the number of players and those players buy more tickets your odds of winning will reduce. However, it would have to be the most popular bingo hall in the world full of players daubing hundreds of tickets each to even get close to the lottery’s unattainable odds.

Winner winner chicken dinner

The lottery works differently to bingo when it comes to winners. Someone only wins the lotto jackpot if all 6 of their numbers match the draw (and there’s no guarantee that anyone’s numbers will), which means the chance of winning the weekly lotto jackpot is a staggering 1 in 45 million, no matter how many people play. 

The odds of winning the EuroMillions draw are even lower, with a 1 in 139 million chance of winning the top prize. You’re more likely to win on the roulette 26 times in a row by only choosing black than you are to win big on the EuroMillions.

Unlike the lottery, every game of bingo has a winner. That’s because numbers are called until the jackpot has been won. This means there is always guaranteed to be at least one big full house winner, with smaller winners along the way who complete individual lines.

Overall, the chances of you winning a game of bingo are higher every single time you play than the odds of you winning the lottery once in your entire life. 

Bingo is fun!

Bingo is a lot more social and enjoyable than the lottery. Gambling is after all supposed to be a fun activity and should not be played as a means to get rich or solve financial worries.

The lottery sometimes advertises itself as an activity that gets people rich and that all players need to do is keep buying in so they don’t miss their turn. But really, that’s not a very responsible way to play.

Bingo however is traditionally played in a hall where dozens of people come together to play. It’s a social experience that encourages people to chat, have dinner, catch up and maybe win some money if they’re lucky. Bingo is treated as a night out and is an activity that people of all ages (18 and up) can enjoy together. 

However, you don’t have to leave the house to enjoy a fun, social bingo night. Online bingo sites often have chat rooms for people to socialise, make jokes and chat away as they play. Just like a real bingo hall, these rooms can even have a live bingo caller who is in the chat and updating the numbers as they are drawn. There are many online bingo sites to check out, so why not visit our bingo comparison pages to find the best fit you for?

If you enjoy the concept of lottery and want to increase the potential of that exciting feeling of winning by playing with dramatically increased odds, then playing bingo is the way to go. If you want to know how to get into playing bingo, read our handy guide.