The first records of lotteries featuring real money prizes date back to the 15th century. At that time, most lotteries were tailored for charitable causes, mostly by the authorities. The popularity of lotteries was further amplified as the concept spread globally.
Over time, lotteries became a part of modern culture, evidenced by the fact that most countries have state-run lotteries. Most governments consider lottery games an essential source of revenue to boost their economies. The number of well-established lotteries currently stands at 180, per the information released by the World Lottery Association. Here is a breakdown of different locations.
The United States is known for having the most lotteries of any country. A majority of the states have state-run lotteries, with the remaining ones still debating whether to introduce lotteries. Out of 50 states, the six US states with no lotteries include Utah, Alabama, Mississippi, Alaska, Hawaii, and Nevada.
There are also two national lotteries, Powerball and Mega Millions. Most adults in the country have played lotteries at some point, making lotteries the most widespread gambling form in the country.
In Canada, lotteries are not as big as in the US. As a result, only three lottery games are operated in the country.
Lottery games are not as popular in Africa as in other regions. However, several lotteries exist in different countries, enough to give most Africans opportunities to play local lotteries.
One of the main limiting factors for lotteries in Africa is geographical challenges that make it difficult to access local ticket vendors. In addition, the economic status of most countries also makes it difficult for citizens to have spare funds to use for playing lotteries.
However, several advanced African countries have national lotteries. That includes Kenya, Nigeria, South Sudan, Algeria, Ghana, Mauritius, Uganda, Morocco, and South Africa. There are a total of 15 lotteries in Africa.
Asia is another continent where lottery games enjoy immense popularity. Playing lottery games is considered by most Asians as a way of conveying support and belonging to the community. In addition, some Asian communities believe playing lotteries is a way of manifesting good fortunes in their lives. Therefore, the respective governments run most lotteries in Asia to distribute the benefits to more people.
There are 29 lotteries across Asia. Most Asian countries, including Lebanon, Japan, and Laos, have only one lottery each. Those with two lotteries are Mongolia and China, with South Korea having four, the highest number in the continent.
Most of the first lotteries were organized in Europe in the 15th century, and lotteries have remained popular ever since. A majority of European countries have at least one national lottery. Estonia is the only European country with more than four national lotteries, with Poland, Lithuania, Lichtenstein, and Bulgaria having four lotteries each. The other European countries have two or three lotteries.
Additionally, there are a few lotteries played across several countries. A good example is the Euromillions lottery, played in nine European countries.
There are 26 different casinos spread across South America. In addition, some South American countries have several national lotteries. For example, Brazil, Barbados, and Argentina have three lotteries each, while Costa Rica and Colombia have four.
Generally, the United States is the most enthusiastic country about lotteries, hosting about a quarter of all the lotteries in the world. Information on those lotteries and others from around the globe can be found at this lotto ranking site. The number of lotteries is expected to increase in the coming years, largely due to the increasing global popularity of lotteries fueled by technological advances in most countries.