BC/49 Review: A Well-Balanced Regional Lottery
There are a staggering number of 6/49 type lottery games available today. Each of these games comes from a different corner of the world and offer their own unique features to try and entice players to spend their hard-earned money on trying to win the jackpot. In Canada, there is one lottery that is provided by the British Columbia Lottery Corporation that is a fan favourite amongst all players. In this BC/49 lottery review, we will look at what this lottery has to offer and how you can use it to win big—though perhaps not as big as Canada’s biggest lotteries.
As mentioned above, BC/49 is run by the British Columbia Lottery Corporation—the primary lottery operator within the region. The game was first launched by the lottery way back on January 29, 1992. Since its launch over 20 years ago, the game has maintained its original number field and has had very minimal changes to the way that the game operates—which is quite an achievement. Today, the draw is one of the more popular games available in Canada and attracts millions of players each draw.
How to Play BC/49 Lottery
Playing this draw game is deceptively simple. The game uses a single-matrix system that only has one number pool. Therefore, all that you need to do to play is select six numbers from a range of 1 to 49. If you do not want to spend time trying to choose numbers to play, the game does offer a quick pick option. This quick pick option will allow a computer to choose numbers on your behalf using a random number generator.
Once you have chosen your numbers (or played using a quick pick), you may purchase your ticket—which costs only $1 per play. When purchasing your ticket, you will also need to decide if you would like to activate the Extra option. This play option costs $1 per play and gives you the chance to win an additional $500,000 and will require you to choose four numbers from a pool ranging from 1 to 99.
After you have decided whether or not you would like to play Extra, you can purchase your ticket and wait until the time of the draw. During the draw, six numbers will be drawn, followed by a seventh and final number. Matching these first six numbers with yours will make you a jackpot winner. The seventh and final number that is drawn is used to determine second and third place prizes. Extra numbers are drawn separately, and you will need to match all four numbers to hit the jackpot.
Odds of Winning
The odds of winning the $2 million jackpot on BC/49 are 1 in 13,983,816. These are by no means the worst odds around, but they could be slightly better considering the jackpot amount is nothing close to some of the bigger jackpots on offer by lotteries like US Powerball and Canada Lotto 6/49—the latter of which has identical odds.
Thankfully, BC/49 has an additional five prize tiers available for if you happen to miss the jackpot. For the Extra jackpot, the odds are considerably better: just 1 in 3,764,376.
The overall odds of winning any prize are 1 in 32.3.
BC/49 Lottery Payout Chart
The six prize tiers of the main BC/49 draw are split in the following way:
# of Matched Numbers
Odds of Winning
6 of 6
1 in 13,983,816
5 of 6 + Final Number
1 in 2,330,636,
5 of 6
1 in 55,492
4 of 6
1 in 1,033
3 of 6
1 in 56.7
2 of 6 + Final Number
1 in 81.2
Prizes for the Extra draw are paid in the following way:
# of Matched Numbers
Odds of Winning
4 of 4
1 in 3,764,376
3 of 4
1 in 9,906
2 of 4
1 in 141
1 of 4
1 in 6.8
BC/49 hosts two draws each week, one on Wednesday and one on Saturday. The draws take place at 7:30 PM (PT).
As you may have imagined, because this lottery offers a static jackpot that never changes, the largest jackpot ever paid out is $2 million. This is a far cry short of the biggest jackpots achieved by some of the other biggest international lotteries, which often have minimum jackpots of this size, but they're certainly not terrible. Just ask best friends Susan Hook and Martha McCallum, who split one of them in August 2019.
Due to the amount of the jackpot, there are no options to receive your jackpot win in annuity payments. Instead, all winnings are paid out in cash lump sums.
Thankfully, lottery winnings in Canada are not subject to any taxation, and you will, therefore, be able to receive the full amount of your win into your bank account. However, we should note that if you use these winnings to gain any form of interest, then tax will apply.
How to Play BC/49 Lottery Online
Unlike some other lottery operators, BCLC does not allow you to purchase tickets for BC/49 on their official website. Luckily, the lottery is offered by different online lottery websites. The most noteworthy of these sites (and the one recommended by the BCLC) is PlayNow.com.
BC/49 Lottery – Is It Worth Playing?
There is no doubt that BC/49 is a lottery worth playing with a great, simple style of play and cheap tickets. While we do wish that the odds were slightly better and that the jackpot was even a little bit bigger, this is an excellent all-round lottery game that has earned its spot as one of Canada's top lotteries. The fact that the game also has the Extra add-on is a great addition and makes this a game that’s well worth trying your luck on.