Apart from being ranked second on the list of cities with the highest number of high-rise buildings in the world, Hong Kong is also the city hosting the famous Mark Six Lottery. Hong-Kong, a former British colony and currently an autonomous country is renowned for its Temple Street Night Market and its skyscraper-studded skyline. But one of the oldest things this amazing city is renowned for is its lottery known as the Hong Kong Mark Six.
The Mark Six Lottery was created by the Hong Kong Jockey Club. Founded in 1884, the Jockey Club, which operates as a non-profit organization, is renowned for its large donations to charitable causes and donates about HK $1 billion every year to such causes, making this Club one of the most philanthropic contributors in the world. The Jockey Club is also the largest taxpayer in Hong Kong, paying approximately 6.5% of all federal taxes.
Playing the Hong Kong Mark Six
The name of this lottery is already enough to offer some insight concerning the game. As the name suggests, the Mark Six lottery is played by choosing 6 numbers from a drum containing balls 49 balls numbered from 1 to 49. Because of the simple format of the game and its attractive odds, the Mark Six Lottery has grown to be a favorite among the residents of Hong Kong so much so that with as little a population as 7 million, some lottery draws record the purchase of over 24 million entries.
Players can purchase their lottery tickets from a betting station or authorized lottery retailer. Each selection costs HK$10 with players able to play more than one selection. Players can also participate in the lottery by purchasing their tickets online via the Jockey Club website. Also, other authorized online lottery ticketing services – theLotter.com, Lottoland.com, and Lottosend.com among others, provide ticket-purchasing services. Players can also choose whether to manually choose their numbers or allow the system choose for them. In addition, players can play their chosen numbers for a number of future draws. All these options go to increase the ticket price but inevitably increase the odds of winning.
Because this lottery broadcast nationwide, the lottery has become a favorite among the people of Hong Kong to the extent that they regard those who do not play the lottery as non-citizens. The queues get longer when the jackpot has been rolled over for a number of weeks such that the jackpot reaches hundreds of HK$. Some players even travel across the country to places where previous winning tickets were purchased just in an effort to increase their chances of winning.
Hong Kong Mark Six Winnings and Prizes
The draws for the Mark Six Lottery are held every week on Tuesday, Thursday and Saturday at 1:30 PM GMT. Sale of tickets on draw nights close 15 minutes before the start of the draw. For transparency purposes, the draw is televised and broadcast on live TV in Hong Kong. In addition, justices of the peace, notable citizens and other beneficiaries are invited to supervise the draws. During the draw, six balls are drawn from a plastic cylinder containing the 49 balls. These six are the main numbers. After the six main balls are chosen, an extra ball is drawn randomly from the remaining balls. The Extra Number is used to determine the winners of the 2nd, 4th and 6th prize tiers.
The Mark Six Lottery has seven prize tiers increasing the odds of a player winning a prize. Regardless of whether or not a player matches the Extra number, he or she can still win the jackpot (first prize) in as much as he or she is able to match all the six main balls. The Mark Six lottery has a minimum guaranteed jackpot amount of HK $8 million. With this lottery, any jackpot and second-tier prizes not won or claimed are automatically added to those of the next draw making it possible for the jackpot amount to increase rapidly, sometimes reaching thousands of HK$. If more than one player matches the jackpot, it is shared equally among the winners
In addition to the jackpot, there are seven other prize tiers. Matching any amount of numbers from 3 to 5 with or without the Extra Number guarantees a prize. The second, fourth and sixth prize tiers require that you match 5, 4 or 3 of the main balls in addition to the extra number. The third, fifth and seventh prize requires that you match 5, 4 or 3 prizes without the extra number. Of course, prize amounts increase as the numbers matched increase. All prizes are paid out in cash lumpsums.
About four or five times a year, this lottery also holds special draws referred to as Snowball Draws. A portion of the cost of the Mark Six ticket is allocated to a pool known as the Snowball Pool which is money that is used to increase the jackpot prizes during Snowball draws. These special draws are typically held during seasonal festivals such as Easter, Chinese New Year, Mid-Autumn Festival, Dragon Boat Festival and Christmas.
Hong Kong Mark Six Record Jackpot Amounts
The largest Mark Six lottery jackpot was won in May 2011 by three winning tickets. The amount was a whopping HK$133.5 million ($17.2 million) won after 24 rollovers over a period of 8 weeks. Each of the three winners took home the sum of HK$ 44.5 million. However, the largest single jackpot amount – HK$ 86 million, was won in January 2012.
Of all the lottery proceeds, the Jockey Club keeps just 6%, the rest of the proceeds are allocated to the prize pool and charitable causes. 54% of the proceeds go to the prize pool while 15% of the proceeds is used to support social welfare projects. Lottery duty to the government takes up the remaining 25% of the total proceeds. Some of the most frequently chosen numbers during draws in 2016 were: 3, 21, 28, 30, 34, and 38 while some of the least frequently drawn numbers were: 1, 17, 21, 31, 37 and 41. The Mark Six is a lottery game worth playing as this game has made a lot of lottery lovers millionaires.