One of the more exciting aspects of the run up to Christmas is the abundance of Christmas Raffles (or Goose Clubs if you're from a rural part of the county) taking place. 

Of course you can pick most of these items up yourself with relative ease but it's so much more satisfying when you've won it. The whole process of buying your ticket, clasping it in your hands as you anxiously wait for the announcer to pull the winning ticket from the tumbler and bring you up on stage to the applause of your peers. It's just pure magic. 

There is generally a good variety of prizes available in every Christmas Raffle but they do tend to fall into five distinct categories. Something edible, something drinkable, a variety pack, something to be used on Christmas Day and last but by no means least, the cash prize. Some prizes are excellent, some are duds. Regardless, the excitement of winning a prize at your Christmas Raffle is paramount. 

Here's our list of five of the best prizes that can appear in your Chistmas Raffle. 

1. A Tin of Biscuits

Is there an Irish household without one of these on Christmas Day? If so we've yet to come across it. The tin of biscuits is as traditional as the Christmas turkey at this stage. Whether it's shared amongst the family during movie time or especially saved for the tea when visitors call around, the tin of  biscuits is a key Christmas food group. The only controversy that can occur is if you're a USA biscuits kind of guy and you win a box of Afternon Tea. The horror. 


2. A Beverage


One would never turn their nose up at a beverage prize. It's the perfect item to have on hand when your neighbour calls around to deliver your Christmas present, a box of biscuits (which they probably won in a raffle themselves). Whether it be a bottle of whiskey, Baileys or a fine wine, it's a welcome addition to any home at Christmas. 


3. A Christmas Turkey Voucher

The Turkey Voucher is the prize that kids everywhere want to avoid. Winning a turkey voucher from your local butcher's when there was a box of USA biscuits in the draw as well is simply devastating for a child but for adults its invaluable. The Christmas dinner already paid for? Sure that's half the battle. 


4.  A Christmas Hamper

Ah the Christmas hamper. Such glorious variety involved here. If you're very luck you might get a tin of biscuits included in yours. That's like two of the best prizes in one!

We know, right?

The standard items that seem to occupy every hamper are a selection box, a box of tea bags (either Barry's or Lyons) , a packet of taytos and some fine chocolates.


5. The Cash Prize

The cash prize is the ultimate Christmas raffle prize. As nice as it is to leave with a tin of biscuits under your arm, it can't exactly compete with winning a few bob can it?


With that in mind. Can there be a greater raffle than the Christmas Millionaire Raffle from the National Lottery? Where all the prizes are cash prizes?! With only 350,000 tickets available there's never been a better shot at becoming a millionaire. 

Tickets are €20 and can be purchased in your local National Lottery agent store. Results for all prizes will be available on the National Lottery website by Jan 1, 2016.