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25 September 2015

Feat: Beer, Bacon, Tax, Sex, Speeding Tickets & The Pope

The World's Weirdest Lotteries

Sure, we have the world of lotteries here at Lottoland but really that's only the half of it. We pride ourselves on gathering the best lotteries out there – but what there are also some lotteries out there that are are properly out there! In this article we're going to take a look at some of the strangest lotteries in the world. You might not win any money, but you might get lucky in other ways, or at the very least get stocked up on bacon and beer before getting a visit from the pope.

The World's Weirdest Lotteries

While this article references lottery tickets at Lottoland you don't purchase tickets, you bet on the results online.

As one of the oldest games known to humanity lotteries have a fascinating and influential history. Regular players may be shocked to discover that lotteries have actually been around since ancient times, predating Alexander the Great, Julius Caesar and Jesus.

They provided funds that helped lay the foundations of the Great Wall of China and were also the foundation of Athenian democracy, through an electoral system known as sortation. World history, both east and west, owes much to the lottery.

No surprise, then, that this most beloved game of chance has seen some bizarre manifestations over the years. Here's some of our favourites...

The Beer Lottery

Have you ever tried a beer so good that you would happily pay an unreasonable amount of money just to taste it again? I'm going to raise my hand to that one – and I'm sure I'm not alone. I've tried beers so good I'd happily evade laser grid alarms and dangle from the ceiling, Mission Impossible style, just for one more sip. 

Sometimes, though, premium beer is brewed in such small batches that getting your hands on it really is an impossible mission, no matter how much cash you have to offer. Such is the case of the coveted Citra Double IPA, a very limited edition beer from the Kern River brewery in California, widely considered to be beer one of the rarest beers in the world.

With demand so high Kern River decided to inaugurate a beer lottery. Sign up to their site and you win the right to buy up to 6 bottles of this super-exclusive beer. Just one bottle costs $54, so that's $324 or just over £212 for a six pack. Plus they don't ship so you need to collect them in person way up in the mountains. It's about a two hour hike to get up there, apparently, and another two hours to get down. I reckon I'd probably have the six pack finished before I got back down and I'd probably be hungry too, if only there was something salty I could snack on along the way… 

"Mmm! Bacon Flavoured Lottery Tickets – Kkkaaghhhh!"

Here's a lottery that sounds like it was invented by Homer Simpson – a bacon flavoured scratchcard. And no, we're not kidding.

Ok so maybe bacon flavoured might be pushing it since I don't think the idea is to eat them and I personally don't know anyone who's tried. Bacon-scented is probably more accurate. And yes, if that tsking little voice at the back of your head just went "Americans" give yourself a pat on the back.

Bringing Home The Bacon is the brainchild of the Indiana State Lottery. Not only does the scratch and sniff scratchcard release the delightful aroma of bacon, it can also give lucky winners prizes of up to $10,000. Or, if that doesn't appeal, you can also win a 20 year supply of bacon – or as many years as your arteries can take, at any rate. So, first beer, then bacon - how do we top that? Well, how's about…

The Sex Lottery

Blokes love beer and blokes love bacon – but we'd happily give both up (if just for a little while) provided the rewards were justifiable.

Designed for people who "aren't fussed about food" the Sex Lottery, the brainchild of dating site Forget Dinner, was launched in the UK in 2014. The first prize being an all-expenses paid night at a fancy hotel complete with a pole-dancing pole, mirrored ceilings – everything you need for a night of unbridled if somewhat tacky passion. 

The Speed Camera Lottery

The sex lottery had thousands of entries, from men and women throughout the UK, though here's a lottery that could potentially get even more entries. Not necessarily willing ones, however.  

Nobody likes speed cameras and Britain, it seems, is the speed camera capital of the world. But rather than going off on a rant like Jeremy Clarkson let's look at what those ever-sensible Swedes came up with. They found a novel approach to combat speeding in the city of Stockholm - by turnng it into a lottery. 

In Stockholm the cameras don't just snap the registration plates of speeders, they take pictures of all the drivers. Those obeying the speed limit are then entered into a lottery draw where you can win big cash prizes – with all the proceeds coming from other drivers' speeding tickets! Apparently the initiative helped to reduce speeding by 22%. Not-for-profit speed cameras that genuinely help to save lives while keeping drivers happy – nice one Sweden!

The Pope Lottery

Match three pointy hats and you become the next pope! 

Only kidding, this isn't a lottery to become the pope, it's a lottery to see him. 

See His Holiness is quite an in-demand celeb to say the least. His followers flock wherever he visits lining the streets fifty deep all clamouring to get a fleeting glimpse of the Holy Father as he rolls by in his Popemobile. But there's only so many tour dates he can have a year, and there's only so much space that can accomodate him. 

Now, if you've been following the news lately you'll know Pope Francis has currently embarked on an historic trip to the United States becoming the first pope to address the US Congress.

America is a huge country, of course, with Catholics making up close to a quarter of the US population – 94.4 million people – and of course there's only one pope to go round. So the city of Philadelphia decided to come up with a fair solution by running a special lottery which giae everyone an equal chance of getting to see the pope. 

The Invoice Lottery

Keen to inform the public on the importance of record keeping and proper invoicing the Polish government introduced a receipt lottery. The main aim of the lottery was to combat the "under-the-counter" culture and promote business transparency and accounting compliance. Or to put it another way, this is not a Delboy lottery.

Register your invoice for a minimum of ten Polish zlotys and you could be in with a chance to win prizes including cars and electronics such as laptops and tablet computers. Sure there's no sex, beer or bacon but, like the Swedish initiative, it's nice to see the carrot being used by government for a change instead of just the stick all the time. 

The EuroMillions Jackpot

Now, after all these obscure lotteries here's a lottery you might have heard of before. It's a Europe-wide lottery where you can win £15 million! It's called EuroMillions and its drawn tonight, so hurry and place your bets now!