How to win the lottery in Thailand
The lottery is a huge deal in Thailand. In fact, local news sources are always sharing tons of stories of people unexpectedly becoming millionaires overnight just from winning the lottery.
As superstitious folk, Thais – no matter which generation they’re from – often come up with “secret” techniques to scoring big. If you’d like to discover the key to your next treasure, here are 7 ways locals claim to get clues to their next big win.
1. Interpreting your dreams
I’d say this is the most convenient way to get anywhere near winning big – all you have to do is lay still on your bed and go to sleep!
Last year, Ms. Kamolwan Supeedaen, a lucky woman from Phra Nakhon Sri Ayutthaya province won a whopping ฿12 million (~USD38K) after she had a creepy dream of floating corpses and a flood. She took this as a sign and dropped by a lottery vendor on her way to work, only to find out that she had won the first prize a while later.
Ms. Kamolwan and her family with the lucky ticket
Image credit: Matichon
The technique is fairly simple. In Thai culture, certain sets of numbers are associated with symbols that might appear in your dream. If you don’t have a wise elderly family member near you to give you the answers, a quick Google search will do the trick.
For example, if you’ve dreamt that your house was flooded, these would be the numbers to choose from:
Image credit: lotto.mthai
Easy, right? So, just randomly pick one, two, or all four numbers and go buy a lottery ticket. Then all you have to do is wait to find out if you’re going to be rich.
2. Seeing animals as a sign
Thai people strongly believe that animals’ behaviours can be a huge clue that can lead to lottery number predictions – especially if you randomly stumble upon a strange critter, or if your pet starts acting strangely.
For example, if you find an animal in a place where they normally wouldn’t be, it’s believed to bring luck to whoever has found them.
Image credit: bloggang
Earlier this year in January, Daily News shared a story of Ms. Kamnang Wongsa, a woman who found a tortoise as she was making her way home from her brother’s funeral. She shared that she saw the tortoise on the road, and that the little fella stood out to her due to its golden shell.
Image credit: Daily News
Ms. Kamnang saw this as a sign and decided to pray, after which she applied some powder on his shell. She then claimed to have seen the numbers 7 and 9 appear. Because tortoises have 4 legs, she decided to go with the numbers “749” as her lucky lottery number.
The little critter was later brought back to a swamp nearby so that he wouldn’t get hurt by traffic on the road.
3. Praying to banana trees
Image credit: Naewna
Besides animals, banana trees are something else Thai locals take note of. The thing to look out for are the banana flowers, especially if they grow abnormally. Thairath shared one such story which happened in Sakon Nakhon this year, where a torrent of villagers gathered around a tree with a special-shaped flower.
The tree belonged to Mr. Lakchai and Ms. Bualon Hanmontree, and villagers believed that it looked like the head of the mythical serpent Naga. In fact, the last time villagers gathered to give offerings to the tree, some got lucky numbers and won the lottery too.
Image credit: Thairath
This time around, people came prepared with flowers, red drinks, incense sticks, and candles to show their respect to the great Naga in hopes of seeing more lucky numbers.
This practice is very common in Thailand, especially in rural provinces.
4. Observing candle drippings in holy water
What numbers do you see?
Image credit: Thairath
Every year as Chinese New Year approaches, people from all over the country visit Sawang Arom Temple in Nakhon Pathom in hopes of being blessed. There is also a holy water basin at the temple that sits next to an idol, which many truly believe is possessed by a spirit that brings luck to those who respect him.
Devotees will light candles and then proceed to hold it cover the basin so that the wax drippings can form shapes in the water – like numbers.
Image credit: Thairath
Here’s where things get interesting. Because there are many people standing around the basin at the same time, chances of people seeing the same numbers are pretty high. This means that anyone hoping to become a millionaire will have to rush to the lottery store to get their tickets before anyone else does.
In January, over 100 lottery vendors were at the temple and everyone had their tickets with the numbers “23, 16, 11, 12 and 501” sold out as that’s what people claimed to see in the basin.
5. Fortune telling with bamboo sticks
Image credit: Freepik
If you want to bring things to the next level beyond candle drippings, then esiimsi or siam si is the way to go. This refers to the act of fortune telling with bamboo sticks, which are marked by numbers.
The person must shake the cup of sticks until one falls out, which will be deemed the lucky number.
Image credit: Thairath
This is usually done 3 times, and the numbers are used as the final 3 digits when buying the lottery. Sawang Arom Temple is also touted as a place locals head to try esiimsi.
6. Having “lucky” numbers
Thais believe that any number that relates to us in any way are our luckiest numbers. Let’s say you have no idea what numbers to choose from when getting the lottery – just go with digits from your phone number, birth date, or even license plate number!
Image credit: Khaosod
Here’s a story about Mr. Saiphet and Ms. Warinthip Satsaeng, a couple from the Buriram province. They shared that they always bought lottery tickets that either have the numbers “05” or “50” based on their car’s license plate number. This led to them hitting the jackpot and winning ฿6 million!
7. Asking children for random numbers
Image adapted from: Post Jung
If all else fails, asking someone else for ideas might just work. In Thailand, asking little kids for numbers is not uncommon at all. In fact, my own mother told me that I’ve made her win the lottery a couple of times when I was a toddler.
There are 2 ways to get numbers from children. The first way is to take them to the lottery vendor and have them pick a ticker for you. The second way is to just be direct and ask them to give you some numbers directly.
Image adapted from: Sanook
This might sound silly, but a lady won ฿6 billion in 2017 after her 1-year-old nephew told her to get the numbers 3 and 1 as the final 2 digits in her ticket.
Tips for lucky numbers
The next time you feel out of luck or when you just want to try something new, give one of these techniques a try – who knows, you might even become a millionaire!
Check out more stories to do with Thai culture here:
- “Rescue” team captures over 1,000 ghosts during festival
- Thai travellers ask monk to bless passports for safe travels
- Man shares how to threaten ghosts