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The Irish Lottery is a twice-weekly lottery that has a minimum jackpot of €2 million and a high maximum jackpot. But what is the highest it has climbed in the past, what are the biggest Irish Lottery jackpots and how can you play the Irish lotto and win these for yourself?
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7. €6 Million a Piece
In May of 2017 the Irish Lottery jackpot reached over €12 million and was won by two players, each getting over €6 million. The winning numbers were 3, 7, 17, 21, 22 and 28, with the bonus ball 2, and along with the two jackpot winners there were four players who matched 5 main balls and the bonus ball, getting close to €24,000 each after sharing a prize pool of €95,000.
6. €13.7 Million for Co Mayo Family
In 2016 a €10 Quick Pick on the Irish lottery secured a County Mayo family nearly €14 million. The family chose not to be identified, but at the time they said that the money would go on a skiing holiday and on tickets to the Euro 2016 Finals. They also said that they would do a good deed for their family and friends, paying off mortgages and debts and ensuring that the love was shared around as much as possible.
The Belmullet newsagents that sold them the line is said to have sold over €30 million in winning lines, making the family-owned shop just as lucky as this Co Mayo family.
5. One Big Prize Split in Two
One of the biggest prizes in Irish Lottery history was dished out on the 26th of March 2011 when the jackpot rolled over to €14,037,236 and was then won. There were two winners on this occasion, which means they both received a little over €7 million, but we’re sure they wouldn’t have minded sharing the prize.
4. Family Fun in Cork
It’s always good to see a family scoop the grand prize in a lottery. These are life changing events, and when a family wins it means the lives of several people are changing for the better.
Such was the case in 2007 when the Cunningham family from Cork won a little over €16 million. Paul and Helen Cunningham were the winners, but they shared the spoils with their five children.
The win came after a small €4 purchase, but it wasn’t all fun and games for this family. At the time they became the biggest lottery winners in Ireland. The Euromillions Ireland had only been active in the country for 3 years and the Irish lottery had not scaled those heights before, so this was a pretty substantial win and one that attracted a lot of unwanted tabloid attention.
Several months after their win Paul Cunningham was reportedly still working at his old job and was disappointed with the way that the tabloids had treated him and his family, spreading stories about so-called rants and bad behavior that the family claimed was not true.
3. Dublin Jackpot
2010 was a good year to play Irish Lotto because not only did it lead to the second biggest jackpot win ever (discussed below) but it also produced the third biggest winner when a player from Donnybrook, Dublin, won a total of €16,3 million on October 23rd, 2010.
Not a lot is known about the lucky winner, but it’s safe to assume that they have spent the last 8 years enjoying their sizable win.
2. Anonymous Winner Takes Big Prize
The second biggest ever Irish Lottery win and the biggest single line win occurred in 2010, when a player from the town of Dungarvan in Waterford walked away with a whopping €16.7 million.
The record-breaking winner chose to remain anonymous, keeping their newfound wealth to themselves, but there are fewer than 10,000 people in the town of Dungarvan, and we suspect that a large percentage of those had a fairly good idea who the winner was. Just look for the resident who suddenly starts wearing flash watches to the local pub and driving around the streets in a sports car.
1. Quarry Workers Strike Gold
The biggest winners of the Irish Lottery have all occurred fairly recently, the last decade in fact, even though this lottery has been going strong for nearly thirty years. The biggest win to date occurred back in 2008, when a syndicate of 16 people shared an €18.9 million jackpot.
The fifteen men and one woman worked in a quarry in Carlow—a town that sits about 50 miles outside the capital city of Dublin—leading to headlines that practically wrote themselves. But while the headline writers had an easy job the next morning, the same couldn’t be said for the managers of the quarry, who had to find over a dozen new employees after the syndicate took their €1.18 million each and headed for greener—and less rockier—pastures.
Play the Irish Lotto online
If these wins have inspired you to play Irish Lotto yourself, then what’s stopping you? This has been one of the best lotteries in the UK since it was founded and can be accessed by players across Europe.
You can buy lotto lines in qualifying locations throughout Ireland, but if you live outside of Ireland you will need to make your purchase online. The Irish Lottery works in a similar way to other national lotteries, including the US Powerball & Mega Millions. There are 6 main numbers and 1 bonus ball, with players choosing numbers from 1 to 47.
The jackpot is paid out when you land all 6 of the main numbers, and you get the second-tier prize when you land 5 main numbers and a bonus ball. The prizes begin when you get just 3 balls. If you get three main numbers then you will typically win a prize of €5 to €10; if you get 2 main numbers and 1 bonus ball then you will win a scratch card—the actual value of both of these prizes, and all other prizes, will depend on the total prize pool and the number of winners.