Another two lucky premium bond holders have become millionaires overnight, marking the second time this year a Wiltshire local has won the jackpot. So which areas of the UK are the luckiest?
Premium bond winners are drawn at random – but our map of recent jackpot winners shows the South East is home to the most instant millionaires.
Which? maps out towns and areas that have been most successful in recent years, and explains why some regions seem to win more than others.
Premium bond winners in Wiltshire and Bedforshire
This month, the NS&I awarded over 3 million prizes to people holding premium bonds. While most winnings were modest, two bondholders earned a £1m prize each.
The jackpot winner in Wiltshire has owned premium bonds since childhood, but upped his holding to the maximum £50,000 in 2017. This is the second time luck has smiled on Wiltshire this year, after a local woman took home the £1m in January.
The Bedfordshire winner bought £7,000 in premium bonds in January this year – meaning he won in the first month he became eligible.
Where do the most premium bond jackpot winners live?
Premium bond prizewinners are determined by the NS&I’s random number generator, ERNIE, so every bond has an equal chance of winning.
But that doesn’t mean prizes are shared out evenly across the country. Which? has mapped the location of bonds which won the jackpot over the past five years – and some interesting clusters have emerged.
London has seen seven people win the jackpot in the past five years, perhaps unsurprising due to its large population.
But Essex and Kent were not far behind, with five winners each. Leicester, meanwhile, holds the unusual distinction of having two winners in the same month, January 2016.
Scotland has seen three winners, two from Edinburgh, while Wales has seen four.
Mapped: Premium bond winners from March 2013 to February 2018
You can explore the luckiest regions in the last five years using our map below.
To protect the winners’ anonymity, the NS&I only releases location information that could apply to at least 100,000 other premium bond holders – in most cases, that means identifying the winner’s local authority, but in others (such as Wales), it may mean a country.
Similarly, overseas destinations are only identified if at least 100,000 bondholders live there.
Why are so many winners from the South East?
While all bonds have an equal chance of winning, it may seem like some areas are more likely to win than others – especially the South East.
Rather than a conspiracy, however, this is generally explained by demographics.
The South East has a higher overall population, and investment in premium bonds tends to be higher – so this region pops up more often among the winners.
By contrast, Northern Ireland has both a smaller population and a smaller number of bondholders, which may explain why no jackpot winners came from this region in the past five years.
Would Agent Million know where to find you?
The NS&I currently holds over 1.4m unclaimed prizes worth over £58m, often because the winner has moved house.
NS&I prizes can either be sent out via post, or paid directly into your bank account. If you’re one of the lucky few who win the jackpot, a representative from NS&I – known as ‘Agent Million’ – will visit you in person
To make sure you don’t miss out on your winnings:
- Register for online and phone services, so that NS&I can contact you via email if you win
- Choose to have your winnings paid straight into your bank account
- Use the prize checker app to see if there are prizes owing
- Update your address details with the NS&I