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Waikato is New Zealand's 'luckiest' region for 2021

Fuseworks Media
Fuseworks Media

It has world-class surf breaks, glow-worm caves, and of course one of New Zealand’s mightiest rivers - and now the Waikato can also claim the title of ‘luckiest’ region for Lotto NZ winning in 2021.

With a population of almost half a million residents, Waikato was pushed to the top of the ‘lucky’ list after a family in Pōkeno won $42.2 million in October - the second largest prize ever won in Lotto NZ’s 34-year history.

The whopping prize meant that on average Waikato locals won $842.19 per capita - over $100 more than the second luckiest region.

After claiming their prize, Pōkeno’s new multi-millionaires said they were excited not just for themselves and their family, but also for what the win would mean to their local community.

"Not only will we be able to help out the kids, but we’ll also be able to help the people around us - we love where we live and are looking forward to being able to help out and support local businesses."

While the North Island may have taken out the top spot, second place has gone to the South Island. The Mackenzie country is renowned for its majestic scenery, but lucky locals will now also be able to celebrate living in Lotto NZ’s second ‘luckiest’ spot for 2021, with Lotto NZ winnings in the area working out to a cool $735.24 per capita.

And it appears some good luck also rubbed off on the Waikato’s neighbouring region Matamata Piako, which has taken out third place with an average of $550.65 per capita won in the region over the course of the year

Rounding out the top ten ‘luckiest’ lottery regions was Carterton, Ashburton, Kawerau, New Plymouth, Tauranga, Central Hawke’s Bay and Rotorua.

A total of 21 lucky Kiwis’ lives changed overnight last year after winning big with Powerball First Division - including a lucky Cantabrian who took home a $22.5 million Powerball prize in February, the second-largest Powerball prize of the year.

However, it took some convincing before the lucky winner’s grown-up children believed he really had won big.

"Neither of my kids believed me - when I told my daughter she just said, ‘I’m sick of your tricks Dad, put Mum on’," the winner laughed at the time.

But it wasn’t just Kiwis playing in-store who won big with Powerball last year, with eight very lucky players taking home life-changing Powerball wins when playing online at MyLotto. This included a woman from Hamilton who got the surprise of her life when she discovered she had won $16.5 million with Powerball.

"Half the fun of buying a Powerball ticket is imagining what you’d do if you won big - it’s something I love doing with the family," said the winner at the time.

"I’m still getting my head around the fact that I’ve won $16.5 million - it still kind of feels impossible. But the more I think about it, the more real it feels."

But Lotto players weren’t the only ones celebrating this year - there was plenty of winning with Instant Kiwi around the country as well. In 2021, a total of 69 lucky Instant Kiwi players experienced the thrill of winning prizes over $50,000 with Instant Kiwi in-store and online.

But it is the small North Island district of Carterton that has claimed the title of ‘luckiest’ Instant Kiwi region for 2021. With a population of less than 10,000, on average Carterton locals won $103.96 per capita with Instant Kiwi games across the year.

Rounding out the top five ‘luckiest’ Instant Kiwi regions was Kawerau, Gore, Ashburton and Central Otago.

Lotto NZ exists to generate essential funding for Kiwi communities - it’s why we do what we do. With 100% of Lotto NZ's profits supporting thousands of great causes every year, every time you play one of Lotto NZ's games, you’re a Kiwi helping other Kiwis. More information is available on MyLotto:

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