I first started playing when I turned 18 in June 2003. I have played every Saturday lottery since then by direct debit.
My best win was £66 for 4 numbers in April 2009. I also won 8x £10 and 4x £25 bringing my total winnings to £246.
That means for every £1 spent I've won just £0.28 back.
As investments go, that's like buying a house for £200,000 and selling it for £56,100 - not a good return!
So, for every £1 spent on the lottery - where does it go?
So of my £877 that equates to:
Very rough calculations assuming an average 3% APR give interest of around £130, taking the money I could have right now over £1000 if I'd saved it each week - a 15% return on my investment so far compared to a 72% loss.
The odds used to be 1 in 14 million, but a 2015 addition of 10 extra balls reduced those odds to 1 in 45 million.
I've played 707 times so far, and would need to play 22.6 million times for it to be more likely I have won the jackpot than not.
Playing once per week, and subtracting my 707 entries so far, I'll be waiting until the ripe old age of 433,262 years old before I have probably won the jackpot.
My advice as a money saver is a resounding no. I started playing as an excited 18-year-old and formed a habit. I know I'm not going to win but can't bear the irrational thought of my numbers coming up the week after I stop. It's a terrible approach, and with hindsight we'd probably all rather have the money sitting in a savings account… except for those who won!