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The Victorian Commission for Gambling and Liquor Regulation (VCGLR) is the independent statutory authority that regulates Victoria's gambling and liquor industries.

Our vision is that Victorians and visitors enjoy safe and responsible gambling and liquor environments.
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Banner displaying electronic gaming machines

Lucky envelopes

Lucky envelopes are a form of pre-determined lottery. They are also known as ‘bingo tickets’, (due to the word ‘bingo’ spelt along the front of the ticket), ‘pull-tabs’ or ‘break opens’. Information about how to conduct the gaming activity - lucky envelopes is available below.

Selling tickets

How are tickets sold?

Tickets may be sold in various ways such as by hand, at a bar or through a ticket-dispensing machine, in addition:

  • electronic lucky envelope machines - after inserting money, a number will display on the screen and the machine will print out a ticket. If the ticket number matches the number on the prize list on the machine screen, that ticket is a winner.
  • punchboard - a hole to be pushed into the punchboard to get a ticket with a number on it, then if the number matches the one shown on the prize list of the punchboard, that ticket is a winner.
Permits

When is a minor gaming permit required?

Any organisation wanting to sell lucky envelopes must hold a current minor gaming permit. Permits are issued for a period of up to two years.

To apply, download and complete the Minor gaming permit application form (PDF, 346KB).

How long does the permit last for?

A minor gaming permit to sell lucky envelopes can last for a period of up to two years.

What happens when the permit expires?

Minor gaming permits for the sale of lucky envelopes are normally issued for a period of two years, although a shorter period can be approved if requested.

A letter will be sent to the person responsible for the permit, before the expiry date. If a new permit is required to continue selling lucky envelopes, an application will need to be completed and submitted to the VCGLR.

What happens if my permit expires before my stock of lucky envelopes?

Lucky envelopes can only be sold if a current permit is in place. If there is still stock leftover at the time of renewal with the old permit number printed on them, you will need to indicate this in the renewal application.

A condition will be placed on the new permit authorising the sale of lucky envelopes with the old permit number to show under the new permit.

What are the conditions of the permit?

Minor gaming permits for the sale of lucky envelopes are issued for a maximum period of two years unless stated otherwise by the VCGLR. Lucky envelopes must not be sold to persons under the age of 18 years.

The name of the permit holder and the permit number must be clearly visible to patrons at the sale point.

Records relating to the sale of lucky envelopes must be kept for three years. The prescribed information that must be kept by the holder of a lucky envelope permit, in respect of each series of lucky envelopes sold, is:

  • the premises on which the lucky envelopes were sold
  • the name of each person who sold them, except if the lucky envelopes were sold in either -
    • premises licensed under section 8 of the Liquor Control Reform Act 1998
    • premises occupied by the executive or governing body of the permit holder
    • a bingo centre operated under a bingo centre operator's licence
  • the notional value, gross receipts and value of prizes paid
  • the amount and nature of expenses incurred and the people to whom those expenses were paid
  • the number of lucky envelopes not sold.
Applications

What is the application fee for a minor gaming permit?

For information about the application fee for minor gaming permit, download the Gambling fees factsheet (PDF 325KB).

How long does the application process take?

The legislation states that applications should be lodged no less than 21 days before the gaming activity is to be carried out. Once lodged the application is processed within 21 days. However, the time required to issue a permit depends on whether the organisation is declared by the VCGLR.

If your organisation is not declared then your application may take longer. If you do not have 21 days, contact us.

Selling lucky envelopes

Where can lucky envelopes be sold?

Lucky envelopes offering non-cash prizes may be sold at any premises with the permission of the owner or manager.

Lucky envelopes offering cash prizes may only be sold at the permit holder's own premises (i.e. clubrooms), licensed hotels, licensed bingo centres or at fetes, fairs or carnivals.

Lucky envelope machines can only be installed at the permit holder's own premises (i.e. clubrooms), at licensed hotels or at licensed bingo centres.

Please note: Lucky envelopes cannot be sold to anyone under the age of 18.

We sell lucky envelopes at a hotel, do we have to pay the publican a fee?

It is not a requirement of the Commission. However, the publican may request a site or handling fee, which covers the work of selling tickets, restocking the machine and paying out prizes. It may also cover the cost of electricity if an electronic lucky envelope machine is installed.

Some publicans may waive the site or handling fee. If a fee is charged, there is no minimum or maximum amount required to be paid. Your organisation should have a written agreement with the publican stating the amount to be paid.

General

What does 'declared' mean?

An organisation is 'declared' when the VCGLR has assessed and approved it to be a community or charitable organisation. If you organisation has been approved, the VCGLR will advise you in writing and include a declaration number. To be approved an organisation must demonstrate that it is conducted in good faith and exists for a charitable purpose, a sporting or recreational purpose, or is a registered political party.

Download the application form, Declaration as a community or charitable organisation (PDF, 271KB).

If the nominee changes, what advice is required to be given and how?

If your nominee ceases as nominee for any reason, you must tell the Commission and nominate another person as nominee within seven days. No fee is payable in relation to this matter. To apply, download and complete the application form, Amendment to a minor gaming permit (new nominee) (PDF, 242KB).

For more information, see Community and charitable gaming

Page last modified 
20 February 2017