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Two South African women sunbathing on a wooden floor after playing the France Lotto online

French Lotto, one of the most popular lotteries in South Africa

The France Lotto, also known as French Lotto, has been a popular lottery game in South Africa for decades since it was first launched in 1976 in France. In this article, we will explore the history of France Lotto, the rules, the odds of winning, the prizes, and some of the biggest main prize wins in its history. Are you ready? Read the full guide, become a pro about the French Lotto and learn how to bet on France Lotto in South Africa!  

French Lotto Beginners Guide


The France Lotto History

The France Lotto, or "Loto Français," stands as a pillar in the world of European lotteries. Since its inception in 1976 by the Française des Jeux, a company owned by the French government, it has consistently attracted players with its simple yet engaging format.

Originally, the France Lotto was designed as a means of raising funds for various public initiatives, from social welfare to cultural projects. Over the decades, this lottery has not only succeeded in this mission but also become a beloved national pastime.

The evolution of the France Lotto reflects a balance between tradition and innovation. While maintaining its core format, the game has seen several modifications, such as the introduction of a "Lucky Number" and changes in the number matrix. These adjustments have kept the game fresh for regular players and attractive to new participants.

France Lotto Rules

The key to winning the France Lotto lies in the game's rules. Players select five numbers from a range of 1 to 49 and a Lucky Number from 1 to 10. Matching all six numbers drawn is the golden ticket to the top payout. However, the game's structure is such that there are several other payout tiers, which means players can win various amounts by matching fewer numbers.

What makes it attractive to play France Lotto online is this payout structure. There are nine payout tiers, with players only needing to match one number (the Bonus Ball) to win a payout. Of course, the more numbers that get matched, the bigger the payout.

Prize Category Estimated Returns
5 numbers + Bonus number Tier 1 payout
5 numbers €100,000.00*
4 numbers + Bonus number €1,000.00*
4 Numbers €500.00*
3 numbers + Bonus number €50.00*
3 Numbers €20.00*
2 numbers + Bonus number €10.00*
2 numbers €5.00*
0 numbers + Bonus number €2.20*

Lottoland South Africa will payout the Rand equivalent of the Euro exchange rate at the time of the payout.

Strategies to win can vary. Some players prefer random selection, trusting in pure chance, while others analyse historical data to identify "hot" or "cold" numbers. Another popular method is joining lottery syndicates, where a group of players pool their resources to buy multiple tickets, thus increasing their chances of winning and sharing the payout.

Odds of Winning France Lotto

Understanding the odds is crucial for any lottery player. In the France Lotto, the odds of winning the payout are approximately 1 in 19 million. Compared to many other global lotteries, these odds are relatively favorable. The France Lotto compares particularly well to our local lotteries – the odds of hitting the top payout in the South African PowerBall are over 42 million to 1!

French Lotto Odds
Prize Category Winning Odds
5 numbers + Bonus number 1 in 19,068,840
5 numbers 1 in 2,118,760
4 numbers + Bonus number 1 in 88,677
4 numbers 1 in 9,631
3 numbers + Bonus number 1 in 2,016
3 numbers 1 in 224
2 numbers + Bonus number 1 in 144
2 numbers 1 in 16
0 numbers + Bonus number 1 in 18

To win any France Lotto payout, the odds improve to about 1 in 16. This again compares favourably to other lotto’s. In the German lotto, for example, your odds of hitting just the smallest payout are 76 to 1. While these odds demonstrate the challenges of winning, they also show that regular and multiple-tier payouts are within reach for players.

When Is The France Lotto Draw?

The draws for the France Lotto are held three times a week: Monday, Wednesday, and Saturday. This thrice-weekly schedule allows players multiple opportunities to win and keeps the game dynamic and exciting. The draws are conducted in Paris and attract a large audience, both in France and internationally, eagerly awaiting the results.

France Lotto Winners

The France Lotto payouts have minted numerous millionaires and has been a source of life-changing moments for many. From modest workers to retirees, the lottery's impact on individuals' lives is profound. One notable story is that of a small-town resident who won a record payout and generously donated a significant portion to local community projects.

The France Lotto’s rules means that the odds of hitting the top payout are significantly shorter than many other lotteries. This may mean that the lottery is “easier” to win, but it does also reduce the likelihood of seeing the mega payouts that are routinely won in the likes of EuroMillions, MegaMillions or the American PowerBall. This is because the top payout is won frequently, so there are not as many “rollovers” as in other lotteries.

That is not to say that the France Lotto shies away from big payouts! Indeed, there not many people who would turn their nose up at the biggest France Lotto payout of €30 million! Other big France Lotto payouts include a sizeable €24 million in 2011 and €23 million in 2014 – hardly chump change!

In addition to individual success stories, the France Lotto has contributed significantly to public welfare through its funding of social projects, sports, and cultural initiatives.

Why Is France Lotto So Popular in South Africa?

The France Lotto has become one South Africa’s best-loved foreign lotteries. This bis easy to understand now that you know how frequently the lotto has been minting new millionaires!  Other than being a millionaire factory, there are some other interesting reasons behind its popularity.

Firstly, the French Lotto offers higher chances of winning a prize due to its three draws per week, which is more frequent compared to many other lotteries. This frequency means the jackpot can grow 50% faster than lotteries with only two draws per week, making it more attractive to players.

The France Lotto is also significantly cheaper than some of its more well-known rivals. While the likes of EuroMillions, US PowerBall and MegaMillions will cost you R50-55 per bet, the France Lotto is a more affordable R40 – and with much better odds too!

Moreover, the ease of access for South African players to participate in the French Lotto online through lottery services like Lottoland has also contributed to its popularity. Thanks to developments in technology, players in South Africa can legally bet on the outcome of a huge number of lotteries around the world – including the France Lotto.

How To Play France Lotto Online in South Africa

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Betting on the France Lotto online is easy, secure, and convenient. All you need to do is register with Lottoland, deposit funds, navigate to the France Lotto page and choose your numbers. With Lottoland you can even choose their “subscription” option to make sure that you never miss a draw!