The moment that all lottery players in Spain have been anxiously waiting for has come, as the El Gordo de Navidad 2013 announced its winners. This is the largest lottery in the world in terms of prize pool, and even though it follows a slightly different format compared to its American counterparts, it generates more enthusiasm. Instead of awarding a huge jackpot worth several hundred million dollars, this lottery makes many people rich, although not to the same extent.
Millions watched the El Gordo de Navidad 2013 show live
Compared to the Powerball or Mega Millions, the El Gordo de Navidad 2013 drawing keeps players at the edge of their seat, for the simple reason that most of them watch it live. The Spanish lottery has a tradition of hosting grandiose festivities in the wake of the draw and the entire process lasts a couple of hours. The numbers themselves are picked by schoolchildren, with famous artists performing live to produce one of the most impressive events held in Spain throughout the year.
Spanish lottery players are very happy with the current format and they don’t mind that only a small fraction of the €2.5 billion collected this year is awarded to the main prize winner. The top jackpot stands at €400,000 while those who win the second-tier category can only hope to take home the equivalent of $170,000, more precisely €125,000. The jackpot is also known as the fat man or “El Gordo”, which explains why the lottery was given this name and how it was possible for it to withstand the test of time.
Prizes get taxed for the first time
Something has changed the El Gordo de Navidad 2013 and it is only fair to say that virtually all players were upset with this particular modification. For the first time ever, prizes that exceed €2500 will be subject to a 20% tax, to the measure being explained by the government as a short-term solution to solve the financial issues caused by the dwindling economy and high unemployment. Several players have won the big prize this year, with most of them being located in Barcelona and Madrid, the biggest cities in Spain and also the ones with the most lottery players. Each winner described his experience with enthusiasm, amplified by the fact that they were watching the show live from the comfort of their home.
Whether alone on their couch, or surrounded by family members and friends, all those who scooped a significant prize began the celebration right away. The vast majority of them has already claimed the money and took their enthusiasm to the streets, in anticipation to the expenses to come. Most El Gordo de Navidad 2013 winners stay grounded and say that a significant chunk of the money collected will go towards paying the mortgage or settling various debts and only a fraction will be used to splash out.
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