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What are the 6 luckiest numbers in the lottery?

Playing the lottery is a fun way to dream about suddenly having riches beyond your wildest dreams. While winning the jackpot ultimately comes down to chance, some people believe that certain numbers hold more luck than others. Are some lottery numbers really luckier than others? Let’s take a closer look at six numbers that seem to come up more often in lottery drawings and explore why some people consider them to be fortunate.

Number 1: 7

The number 7 is commonly thought to be one of the luckiest numbers you can play in the lottery. There are several reasons why 7 is associated with good fortune and success:

  • It is considered a lucky number in many cultures and religions around the world.
  • There are 7 days in a week, 7 colors in a rainbow, and 7 notes on a musical scale. The number 7 is deeply ingrained in human civilizations.
  • In numerology, 7 is seen as a mystical number representing wisdom, intuition, and spiritual awakening.
  • In surveys of lottery players, 7 is repeatedly ranked as one of the most popular “lucky” numbers.

The ubiquity of the number 7 across cultures and belief systems helps explain why many lottery players see it as a lucky number. While no number offers an advantage in random drawings, the mind naturally tries to spot patterns – and 7 is a pattern that people gravitate toward.

Notable 7 lottery wins

Here are some notable lottery wins where the number 7 was part of the winning combination:

  • A UK player won £161 million in the EuroMillions lottery with the numbers 7, 10, 15, 44, 49.
  • The winning Mega Millions ticket worth $451 million included the number 7.
  • A Spanish lottery called El Gordo had a $950 million jackpot won with a ticket containing the number 7.
  • An Oregon man won a $182 million Powerball jackpot using the numbers 7, 13, 35, 61, 69.

Number 2: 13

Despite its reputation as an unlucky number, 13 is actually one of the most commonly drawn numbers in lotteries around the world. There are a few theories as to why the number 13 may bring good fortune when playing the lottery:

  • It is considered lucky in Italian culture. Italy has a long history of lottery games dating back centuries.
  • Fear of the number 13 leads many people to avoid it. Less competition means better odds if 13 hits.
  • The number 13’s association with bad luck and danger makes it seem more “due” to come up.

While these are just theories, the data shows 13 is definitely a well-performing lottery number:

  • One analysis found that 13 is the most commonly drawn number in Mega Millions and Powerball.
  • A study of Canadian lottery wins showed the number 13 occurring 7.8% more often than expected.
  • 13 has contributed to jackpot wins in lotteries across Europe, Australia, and the United States.

So even though many buildings skip the 13th floor, this number could be your lucky ticket in the lottery!

Notable 13 lottery wins

Here are some big lottery prizes that were won with 13 as part of the combination:

  • A $448 million Powerball jackpot was hit in 2013 by a ticket with 13, 14, 22, 52, 55.
  • An Italian SuperEnalotto lottery paid out $163 million to someone with the numbers 13, 18, 46, 55, 57.
  • A Spanish Christmas lottery called El Gordo awarded $950 million, with 13 forming part of the winning line.
  • The number 13 contributed to a Mega Millions jackpot of $437 million in 2013.

Number 3: 38

While not as popular as 7 or 13, the number 38 still ranks high as a lucky lottery number for a few key reasons:

  • It is one of the rare “triangular numbers” in numerology, meaning it can form an equilateral triangle (dot arrangements in rows of 1, 2, 3 dots). These numbers are considered lucky.
  • In Chinese culture, the number 38 sounds similar to their word for “wealth” or “riches”.
  • On a standard roulette wheel, 38 is one of the numbers players can bet on to win a 36:1 payout.

According to data crunched from previous lottery draws:

  • 38 ranks high on lists of most commonly occurring Powerball numbers.
  • It is among the 20 most frequently drawn numbers in Mega Millions.
  • An analysis of UK National Lottery data found 38 is drawn more often than statistical chance alone would predict.

Notable 38 lottery wins

The lucky number 38 has contributed to several big lottery prizes over the years:

  • A Mega Millions jackpot of $119 million in 2019 had a winning ticket with the numbers 38, 53, 56, 62, 65.
  • 38 was part of a winning SuperLotto Plus ticket in 2005 that earned the player $193 million.
  • In 2011, an Irish lottery player took home a $14 million prize using 38 in their winning numbers.
  • A Croatian man hit a $15 million lottery jackpot in 2014 thanks in part to having the number 38.

Number 4: 42

Why do people consider 42 to be one of the best numbers to play in the lottery? A few key associations contribute to its reputation as a lucky number:

  • 42 is thought to be the Answer to the Ultimate Question of Life, the Universe, and Everything in Douglas Adams’ sci-fi comedy The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy.
  • It is the jersey number of legendary baseball player Jackie Robinson.
  • In numerology, 42 is a “master number” associated with wisdom and intuition.

While pop culture references certainly fuel the appeal of 42, this number has delivered big wins for past lottery players as well:

  • 42 was picked by the winner of a $27 million Florida Lotto jackpot in 1999.
  • A UK National Lottery jackpot of $22 million was hit by a ticket that contained 42 in 2008.
  • 42 came up in a Super Lotto Plus ticket that won $13 million in 2015.

So even though 42 seems randomly plucked from thin air, it does have origins in culture and mysticism that could justify its reputation as a lucky number.

Notable 42 lottery wins

Here are some noteworthy lottery jackpots where 42 was part of the winning ticket:

  • In 2011, a Mega Millions player won $61 million using 42 as one of their numbers.
  • 42 helped contribute to a Powerball jackpot of $40 million won by a group of coworkers in 2012.
  • A Spanish lottery called La Primitiva awarded a $36 million euro prize to someone with 42 on their ticket.
  • 42 came up in the numbers for a California SuperLotto Plus ticket that claimed a $20 million prize.

Number 5: 23

While it does not have any major cultural associations, the number 23 is still considered fortunate in the lottery world for a few reasons:

  • It is a prime number, meaning it is only divisible by 1 and itself. Some numerologists believe primes are lucky in general.
  • The number 23 is famously significant within the occult and mystical fields, giving it an aura of fate and destiny.
  • 23 is the ninth prime number. Nine is tied to achievement and success in numerology.

Empirical data also backs up 23 as a solid lottery number choice:

  • One Mega Millions statistician noted that 23 is the second most common digit in Mega Millions jackpot-winning tickets.
  • Analysis shows 23 is the seventh most frequently drawn Mega Millions number overall.
  • 23 ranks high on lists of commonly drawn Powerball numbers based on statistics.

Notable 23 lottery wins

Here are some big lottery paydays that involved the number 23:

  • 23 was part of a Mega Millions ticket that won $22 million in 2011.
  • A Spanish lottery called El Gordo paid out $950 million in prizes, with a winning ticket that included 23.
  • 23 contributed to a Powerball jackpot win of $80 million that was claimed in 2016.
  • An Oregon Lottery player won $14 million with a ticket containing 23 in 2020.

Number 6: 4

The number 4 is the least commonly cited “lucky” lottery number, but there are still some good reasons it makes the list:

  • In Chinese culture, 4 is considered a very unlucky number due to its similarity to the word for “death”. But this also gives it appeal as an unexpected choice.
  • Vehicles racing in NASCAR and Formula One have numbers that are multiples of 4 (24, 44, 84…).
  • April is the 4th month, and April 15 is the day taxes are due in the United States.

So while 4 has fewer symbolic ties to luck, it has proven a popular lottery number choice for many players over the years:

  • 4 is among the top 10 most frequently drawn Powerball numbers in the game’s history.
  • An analysis of Mega Millions numbers shows 4 has been drawn 352 times, placing it firmly in the top half of all numbers.
  • The number 4 is the 7th most common digit in Mega Millions jackpot-winning tickets.

Notable 4 lottery wins

Here are some big lottery jackpots where having 4 as part of the ticket combination led to millions:

  • A 2013 Mega Millions jackpot of $543 million was won with a ticket containing the numbers 4, 19, 24, 28, 51.
  • 4 contributed to a winning Powerball ticket of $96 million sold in New Jersey in 2020.
  • A Mega Millions player in Ohio won $372 million playing 4, 8, 22, 27, 58 in 2008.
  • 4 came up in a SuperLotto Plus ticket that won the $7 million jackpot in California.

Why do people believe in lucky numbers?

The human mind is hardwired to look for patterns. When certain numbers seem to appear frequently in lottery drawings, our pattern-seeking brains view it as more than just coincidence. Psychologists call the tendency to imagine patterns where none exist “apophenia.” While imaginary, these perceived patterns can influence behavior.

Some other psychological factors that help explain the appeal of lucky numbers:

  • Confirmation bias – People notice when their lucky numbers hit but ignore all the times they don’t.
  • Gambler’s fallacy – After a number hits, people think it is “due” to hit again.
  • Anthropic principle – Someone has to win, so why not with your lucky number?

In the end, any association people have with certain numbers being lucky is an emotional, psychological phenomenon rather than a mathematical one.

Do lucky numbers actually increase your odds?

While it can be fun to ponder over which lottery numbers seem the most fortunate, the simple truth is that no numbers actually improve your chances of winning. Lottery drawings are random, and each combination of numbers has exactly the same probability of being chosen.

Why don’t lucky numbers impact the odds?

  • Lottery machines or ball drawing systems are completely random.
  • The balls or numbers have no memory or bias toward certain outcomes.
  • A number’s past appearance does not affect future drawings.
  • Over a long period, all numbers will be drawn roughly an equal number of times.

So logically, having a lucky number offers zero advantage. But it does no harm either, as long as you temper your expectations. Psychologically, playing with special numbers may offer a little extra fun and excitement.

Should you use popular lucky numbers?

While lucky numbers won’t improve your lottery chances, picking unpopular numbers has some strategic benefits:

  • You reduce the chance of having to split a jackpot.
  • Combinations with a wider range of numbers have better odds mathematically.
  • Rare number combinations see less play from superstitious people.

Some ways to select unique lottery numbers include:

  • Using birthdays, anniversaries, or addresses that don’t fall on the 1st, 7th, or 12th.
  • Selecting several numbers above 31, which tend to be played less.
  • Mixing low and high numbers instead of using patterns like 1-2-3-4-5-6.

There is no truly “right” or “wrong” way to pick lottery numbers. Yet avoiding popular lucky choices may reduce the risk of split pots and increase your expected payout if you do hit the jackpot. Just don’t expect those numbers to be any luckier in terms of actually winning.

Can lucky numbers improve your odds in other games?

While lucky numbers offer zero advantage in lottery games, they may optionally have some practical benefit in some cases:

  • Roulette – Always betting on a lucky number avoids having to randomize bets.
  • Blackjack – Specific seat numbers or dealer spot locations can feel lucky.
  • Poker – Certain card protector trinkets may provide a confidence boost.

However, this impact relies completely on psychological factors rather than any real change in probability or odds. In purely chance-based games, any lucky charms or behaviors are just superstitions.

Key Takeaways

Here are the key points to remember about lucky lottery numbers:

  • Certain numbers like 7, 13, and 38 are considered lucky based on history, culture, and mystical numerology.
  • Perceived lucky numbers get played more, but have no actual mathematical advantage.
  • Playing less popular numbers may reduce the chance of split pots if you win.
  • In the end, all combinations have the exact same odds of being randomly drawn.
  • Lucky numbers can add entertainment value, but don’t expect better odds of winning.


Some people swear certain numbers like 7 and 13 seem to come up more often in lottery drawings. While there is no mathematical reason why some numbers would turn up in random games more than others over time, the human mind loves to spot and give meaning to apparent patterns. So-called “lucky” numbers may not boost your odds, but can help add a little mystique and fun to playing the lottery. Over the decades, famous jackpots have been won by tickets containing the lucky numbers discussed here. Of course, for every supposed fortunate number, there is a story of someone who played them faithfully only to watch other combinations hit. In the end, the only strategy that genuinely improves your lottery chances is buying more tickets – no superstition required.