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What makes Lottario a better game than Lotto6/49

October 5, 2007

Lottario gets no love.

Sure, the 6/49 prizes might look tempting up front, but look a little further down the line, and you come to a neglected little game called Lottario.

In both games, 6 numbers plus a bonus number are chosen for each draw. This makes them very comparable.


  • Costs only 1 dollar
  • 1 dollar will get you 2 sets of numbers (1 you choose, and 1 random)
  • Guaranteed minimum $250,000 Jackpot.
  • Draws once per week.
  • EARLY BIRD jackpot (4 numbers chosen on the Friday before, must have all 4 numbers, like a whole seperate game with your ticket).

Lotto 6/49

  • Each play costs $2.
  • Draws held every Wednesday and Saturday.

The immediately visible benefits of playing Lottario are:

  • cheaper
  • 2 draws (including the early bird) on each play
  • 1 dollar buys you 2 plays for each draw!
  • That’s 4 plays for $1

Now, as my brother pointed out in the comments section of my previous article, what’s the comparison of prize? It’s tough to match apples to oranges, but we’ll give it a try using some numbers and various graphs and tables.

 Odds Tables


Number of Matches Win Odds
6 of 6 44 % of the Pools Fund “1 in 4,072,530.5”
5/6 + Bonus 5.4 % of the Pools Fund “1 in 678,755.25”
5 of 6 19 % of the Pools Fund “1 in 17,862.24”
4 of 6 31.6 % of the Pools Fund 1 in 366.6
3 of 6 $5 1 in 22.53
EARLY BIRD “$50,000 (share equally)” “1 in 4,966.75”
Any prize 1 in 21

Lotto 6/49

Number of Matches Win Odds
6 of 6 80.5 % of the Pools Fund “1 in 13,983,816”
5/6 + Bonus 5.75 % of the Pools Fund “1 in 2,330,636”
5 of 6 4.75 % of the Pools Fund “1 in 55,492”
4 of 6 9 % of the Pools Fund “1 in 1,033”
3 of 6 $10 prize 1 in 57
2/6 + Bonus $5 prize 1 in 81
Any prize 1 in 32

 Odds of winning any prize

This one will be easy.

Winner: Lottario, 1 in 21
Loser: Lotto6/49, 1 in 32

Odds of winning a low end prize

Winner: Lotto 6/49, there are 2 different low end prizes ($5 and $10)
Loser : Lottario, only a single low end prize ($5)

Odds of winning medium and high range prizes vs. prize pool

In order to present this data to you, we’re going to have to make up an example minimum prize amount. We know that the published minimum for Lottario is $250,000 , but because the Lotto6/49 can grow over time, the jackpot prize can balloon to as high as $30,000,000 dollars. Because the last prize was won, I see the new jackpot number has been ‘reset’ to $4,000,000 dollars.

As you can see from the charts below, the distribution looks close. A few points I can see in the 3 charts below:

  1. The odds-to-payout ratio seems to be a lot closer for 6/49, meaning, worse odds for a slightly elevated payout.
  2. The games are designed similarly, they just operate in 2 different planes.
  3. If you’re after the jackpot, Lottario may not be for you. Put it all in the 6/49.

Lotto 649 Snapshot Odds of Payout 1

Lottario Snapshot Odds of Payout 1

Lotto Comparison

14 Comments leave one →
  1. pranajules permalink
    October 6, 2007 3:16 pm

    I’d like to add that one difference between Lotto 6/49 and Lottario, is that in Lotto 6/49, there are 6 numbers ranging from 1-49 but in Lottario, the range is from 1-47. (in both of these cases, needless to say, each individual number can appear only once per ticket)

    • CDUB permalink
      June 25, 2010 3:37 pm

      The range on Lottario is 1-45 not 47.

  2. April 13, 2008 11:33 pm

    Great comparison. I make a similar distinction with my system where the odds of winning are ALWAYS increased by selecting a game with the lowest number of balls and numbers.

    After all, it’s the odds that make or break any lottery system.

  3. realworldnumbers permalink*
    April 14, 2008 1:17 pm

    Thanks Ken!

    One more thing about odds is that you increase them exponentially by simply buying a ticket 😉

  4. May 10, 2011 2:31 pm

    Intuitively Lottario gives you better odds because you’re picking 6 numbers out of 45. And it costs less than 649. If you spend $40 on Lottario you get 80 sets of numbers, and if you buy your tickets by Friday you also qualify for the Early Bird draw. If you spend $40 on 649 you get 20 sets of numbers.

    These days I am spending most of my lottery budget on Lottario tickets. It makes sense to me. This Saturday, for example, the Lottario Jackpot is $700,000. This Wednesday’s 649 Jackpot is $3,000,000 and if it’s not won, Saturday’s jackpot will be $7,000,000. I will be very, very happy winning the Lottario Jackpot of $700,000.

  5. Philip Dawson permalink
    March 8, 2012 9:22 pm

    Thinking of going to Lottario only. The 6-49 Bonus draws are a bust. Only 1 out of 4 won so far.

  6. Nova permalink
    March 30, 2012 9:47 pm

    I have my suspicions that Inter provincial lottery Corporation might be rigging the system. Why is it that only old people win the lottery? Especially Big Jackpots. Winners are almost always over 60 years old. There is not enough transparency when it comes to the draws. Anything can be done since it is all done Behind closed doors. They post the winning numbers when ever they want, there is no guaranteed time the number are said to be posted at. I wouldn’t even be happy with a live internet stream. They should do them on a live news station like cp24. My only real suspicion is the fact that ONLY OLD PEOPLE WIN! I am almost 21 and the most i ever have won from a draw is 20 dollars. And i play 2-3 times weekly excluding daily keno and the pick3 and 4 lottery’s. I am not saying i expected to have won big by now, but is just weird that young people never win. for every 100 lottery wins there is maybe only 1 young winner under the age of 30. I have been following this closley for over 2 years. WTF!

  7. Philip Dawson permalink
    March 31, 2012 3:09 am

    Memo to Nova:If you think it is rigged, go and see the balls bounce around.You can see it live. If you can’t win, better take up knitting.

  8. Gamer Bob permalink
    April 9, 2013 12:01 am

    The actual odds of winning Lottario are 1:8,145,060. However, because you get 2 lines for $1, they divide the actual odds by 2 to make it seem more attractive. Still, the odds are by about 6 million combinations better than 6/49 and it is way cheaper to play. I spend quite a lot on lottery and Lottario is my game of choice. As the jackpot grows from $250K, I increase the amount I spend. It is now that time of the year again. A couple of years ago when the jackpot was $1.5 million, I got 5 numbers right, winning about $700. Usually when I spend a larger amount of money, I end up winning back about 40% of the money “invested.” I am hoping to win big one day, but getting 6 numbers in the same line is one of the hardest things one can ever accomplish (I pick numbers consciously based on my own “analysis” of randomness). Call me crazy, but I believe the stars will align for me one day.
    However, when it comes to odds, by far the best OLG game to play is Daily Keno. For example, the odds of winning 10 numbers (top jackpot) are 1:2,147,181 which is about 4 times better than Lottario. For $250,000 jackpot you pay $1, but you can also play $2, $5 and $10 for a max jackpot of $2.5 million. I often play $2 on 8 numbers (odds 1:74,941) for $50,000 jackpot, and $10 on 7 numbers (odds 1:15,464) also for $50,000 jackpot. A couple of times I came close missing only one number and winning $400 and $500. You also win a bit by having 6 out of 8 and 5 out of 7 numbers right.

    • April 9, 2013 9:30 pm

      Are you sure you’re not related to me ?
      I like Lottario a lot and I play the MAX, 6-49 as well.
      I think you are right about the odds.

      Here is something that will help you win. Play delta numbers on each line of play—-. go to google and log in Delta lottery.

      Since you might live in Ontario, call me some evening to talk. I won a house back in 1974 and am still in the hunt for a jackpot.
      My phone # is 905-579-1116
      Phil Dawson. .

    • April 10, 2013 5:17 am

      Gamer Bob, call or write when you have time.
      DAWSON at 905-579-1116

  9. April 11, 2013 10:14 pm

    To Gamer Bob and friends. I have about 15 cards for both Lottario and the 6-49. As the jackpots rise, i will play an extra 1-2 cards on each draw. So, since the 6-49 is at 55 million, I played all my 6-49 cards, spending $175.00.ALL IN!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
    Makes sense, no?

    On Friday tomorrow, the Lottario pool is $ 1,340,000.00. So, guess what? I’m all in tomorrow in the Lottario by playing ALL MY Lottario cards on the one draw..

  10. April 11, 2013 10:22 pm

    Some people just down the street won 50 million last winter on Lotto Max. The husband and wife both worked in a restaurant. Nice to see them with the big hit!!!11111111111.
    However, i have my truck all washed up so that I can go to the prize office on Monday morning.See you all on Global News.

  11. April 11, 2013 10:25 pm

    I fully intend to be the first person to win 2 jackpots on consecutive nights.

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