Spanish panhandler becomes latest lottery millionaire

Published on: August 8, 2022, 08:38 am.

Last update: August 8, 2022, 08:38.

They say anyone can win the lottery. A homeless woman from Alicante, Spain proved this when she became a new millionaire after winning the country’s lottery. Bonoloto lottery on August 1.

Tobacco shop in Alicante, Spain
The interior of a tobacco shop in Alicante, Spain. Here, a beggar became a millionaire on August 1. (Image: Estanco 54)

The unidentified woman bought the ticket from a local shop where she frequently spent her time asking strangers and passers-by for spare change. Often, she would take some of the money to buy a lottery ticket in hopes of escaping her situation.

It finally happened last week. The panhandler earned 1.27 million euros ($1.29 million), according to the news outlet Informationin a life-changing moment.

From shock to amazement

At first, the woman did not believe she had won the prize. So the next day, she again took €1 ($1.02) of her money and bought another ticket. The Bonoloto and At Primativa they were the only lotteries he would play because EuroMillions was too expensive.

As he bought his next ticket, he took a second to double-check the numbers from the previous one. Then reality set in and she fully realized that she was now an instant millionaire.

The winner won’t take home the entire amount, but will still be able to make some changes to her daily routine. Until 2013, there was no tax on lottery winnings. Since then, however, the government has implemented a tax bracket, but now offers an exemption for the first €40,000 ($44,840). As such, the woman will have to waive 20% of the fees.

Bonoloto remains extremely popular

The Bonoloto, because of its cost, is the most popular lottery in Spain. It debuted in 1988 and continues to gain ground.

To play, as with many lottery products, players choose six numbers from a table from 1 to 49. Each bet is worth €0.50 (US 0.51) and players must make at least two selections of six numbers. 55% of all money raised goes back to lottery prizes.

Bettors have the option of playing a simple six-number bet. In addition, there is also a multiple bet where up to a maximum of 11 numbers can be selected. As players pick more numbers and more options, the odds of winning increase, but so does the cost.

Millions to be won in Spain this year

There have been a number of big lottery winners in Spain this year, but the biggest was in January. Winning tickets for annual Lotería del Niño (Children’s Lottery) received €2 million (US$2.04 million) each in January to claim the top prize.

There were other winners who received massive payouts. Second-place winners won €75,000 ($76,462), while third-place tickets were worth €25,000 ($25,487). In total, the lottery awarded more than €700 million (US$713.65 million) in cash.

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