History of lotteries in Thailand

Lottery games have a rich history in Thailand, dating back to 1874 when lotteries were first introduced in the country, until today with Thailand remaining an integral and valued member of APLA. 

  • 1874 – Thailand’s lottery was first issued on the occasion of King Chulalongkorn (Rama V)’s birthday. King Chulalongkorn gave the Royal Bodyguard Department permission to operate a European-style lottery.  Proceeds from the sales of the first lottery draw was used to assist foreign merchants to bring goods to display at the Museum in the Concadia building located in the compounds of what is today known as the Grand Palace.
  • 1917 – Lotteries began in Thailand with King Vajiravudh (Rama VI) allowing a group of Thai citizens to purchase tickets into the British Patriotic Council Lottery. Each ticket was sold for 5 baht and prizes came in the form of loan agreements from the Warfare Loan Board.
  • 1923 – King Rama VI allowed citizens to purchased tickets into Sua Pa Million-Baht Lottery, established to fund the purchase of guns for the Sua Pa Volunteer Unit. Guns bought from this fund were named after the King and were later transferred to the Police Department.
  • 1933  The Siamese Government Lottery was created to raise money for education and medication. The government authorized the Revenue Department to run the lottery under an arrangement related to the reduction of tax rates.
  • 1939 – Government Lottery and Municipal Lottery were transferred to the Ministry of Finance and The Government Lottery Office was established, with a government lottery draw board appointed.
  • 1952 – Thailand began printing its own lottery tickets, with a printing office built at Chakrabongse Road and two printing presses ordered from the United States and installed.
  • 1964 – The Ministry of Finance issued regulations on the management of the Government Lottery Office. Relevant laws were amended to allow the sale of lottery tickets across the country based on the size of the population in each province.

  • 1974 – The Regulations on Lottery Issuance Act was established by the government, specifying the purpose of the Government Lottery Office as: “…the printing house management, which is the device for printing lottery tickets or printing other publications approved by the board.”
  • 1977 – The Government Lottery Office constructed a new printing house at Soi Ekamai, Sukhumvit 63 Road.
  • 1988 – Changes to the game formats were introduced, requiring players to have six digits instead of seven. Ticket prices increased from 20 baht to 40 baht.
  • 2017 – The format and size of lotteries were improved, with the Government Lottery Office revising the ticket format from a pair of tickets priced at 80 baht (40 baht each), to a single ticket sold for 80 baht. This was introduced to meet increased demand from players and prevent confusion. The prize structure has remained the same to this day.

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