Cousin of the United States’ Powerball, Thunderball is one of the United Kingdom’s top lotteries that may not offer huge jackpots as Powerball or Euromillions, but is still a favorite amongst players in the United Kingdom.

The UK Thunderball was created by the UK National Lottery , the country’s official lottery organization, and is administered by the Camelot Company. The lottery was first held on June 12th , 1999 and offers players a constant fixed jackpot of £500,000 (US $778,000).

UK Thunderball Rules

7871435822_142981f7b7_zTo play, select 5 numbers from a guess range of 1 to 39 and one additional number (the Thunderball) from a different guess range of 1-14. The additional number (the Thunderball) enables players to win supplementary prizes and is necessary to complete the jackpot winning number selection. Players are offered a 3 or 6 line entry form and can choose their numbers manually (Natural Selection), have the numbers randomly selected by the system (Quick Pick), or draw the number selection from saved numbers from their account (My Numbers).
Winning numbers are drawn on Wednesdays at 22:30 GMT, Friday at 22:35 GMT and Saturday at 20:30 GMT at the lottery headquarters in London and ticket sales close approximately 3 hours prior on theLotter.

Winning the UK Thunderball Lotto

The UK Thunderball lottery offers an impressive nine winning prize categories and the Thuderball is needed, in addition to matching the 5 correct guesses, to win the fixed top prize of £500,000. The additional number (Thunderball) is also essential to the 3rd, 5th, 7 th, 8th and 9th prize categories. Regardless of the number of jackpot winners, each first place winner receives the full £500,000 top prize, tax-free.

This lottery is also well known for its noteworthy winning odds assuring that 1 out 29 players will become winners,  and the odds of winning the jackpot are virtually unsurpassed worldwide. To learn more about the UK Thunderball Lotto’s winning odds, view the Winning Odds chart located in the UK Thunderball Lottery More Info page.

UK Thunderball winners have 180 days from the day of the draw in which to claim their prizes, and all unclaimed prizes will be given to the charitable needs of the Good Causes Foundation.

Old (1999–2010) New (after May 2010)
Match Prize Odds of winning Prize Odds of winning
Thunderball only £3 1 in 14
1 + Thunderball £5 1 in 33 £5 1 in 35
2 + Thunderball £10 1 in 107 £10 1 in 135
3 numbers £10 1 in 74 £10 1 in 111
3 + Thunderball £20 1 in 960 £20 1 in 1,437
4 numbers £100 1 in 2,067 £100 1 in 3,647
4 + Thunderball £250 1 in 26,866 £250 1 in 47,415
5 numbers £5,000 1 in 299,661 £5,000 1 in 620,046
5 + Thunderball £250,000 1 in 3,895,584 £500,000 1 in 8,060,598

Source: Wikipedia