A last-minute Christmas shopping trip and the jingling of spare change left a Southland man $250,000 better off after winning the top prize on a scratchie.
The unnamed winner bought the Instant Kiwi $10, 20x Money Multiplier ticket at Countdown Waikiwi in Invercargill while out shopping for some last-minute Christmas gifts.
A statement from Lotto NZ said the man did not want to be named and planned to be sensible with his winnings.
However, he would spend some of it on a special New Year celebration with his family and may splash out on a new car.
"It could not have come at a better time - it's great to have the extra money in time for the New Year. What a great way to kick off 2014," he said.
The man realised he had $10 spare change in his pocket, so decided to buy a ticket before going home.
"If I hadn't had that extra $10 in my pocket - or if I'd bought the ticket in a different shop, on a different day or even five minutes later, it wouldn't have been me."
He almost threw away the winning ticket, not realising it was worth $250,000.
"I did not see the prize at first, so was going to bin it, but I double-checked... I'm so glad I did."
- The Southland Times