Beat The Odds Beat The Odds

Have you ever wondered what the odds of being bitten by a shark are, or perhaps winning the jackpot at the lottery? And which is more likely?

It's one thing to be able to assess the odds when playing a game of Blackjack, but how easy is it to calculate the likelihood of something happening when applied to real-life scenarios? Are we worrying unnecessarily about certain situations happening and letting emotion over logic cloud our judgement? Or is our perception of specific events happening accurate?

We surveyed 1000 people to see if they're able to correctly assess the likelihood of certain events happening and the results were quite surprising.

Do you think you can guess how likely (or not) the public think an event is likely to be?

Try our quiz and find out! Just want the details?


What did the general public
think is most likely to happen?

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We surveyed 1000 Brits to see how good they are at guessing the chances of certain events happening. Interestingly, only 8% of respondents were able to guess that divorce was the most likely scenario, while only 2.4% were able to judge the likelihood of being killed by a shark, compared to other events.

In order to prevent those being surveyed from being overwhelmed, 30 events were divided into three lists of 10. The 1000 people surveyed were asked to order each one of the lists into the order they thought most likely. The positions in these lists for the basis for the comparison questions in the Beat The Odds quiz questions above. These three lists, as aggregated and ordered by those surveyed, are shown below.

Event "1 in" Chance
Getting a divorce12
Living to the age of 10023
Winning at Blackjack in Las Vegas321
Winning at Roulette in Las Vegas437
Becoming a millionaire under the age of 40555
Winning at Craps in Las Vegas6167
Dying in a car accident7200
Having identical twins8250
Meeting 'the one'9562
Dying by drowning101,117
Dying from food poisoning1117,519
An asteroid hitting Earth12300,000
Being dealt a royal flush in poker13666,667
Being killed by a shark143,748,067
Being struck by lightning1510,000,000
Dying in a plane crash1611,000,000
Winning Gold at the Olympics1722,000,000
Winning the National Lottery jackpot1845,057,474
Winning at Slots in Las Vegas1949,836,032
Becoming a NASA Astronaut2057,030,769

Aggregated Scenarios

1Leaving with a no-deal Brexit
2Prince Harry and Meghan Markle staying together
3Winning at Roulette in Las Vegas
4Meeting 'the one'
5Getting a divorce
6Winning the National Lottery jackpot
7Dying by drowning
8Being struck by lightning
9Having identical twins
10Winning Gold at the Olympics
1Buying a house in the next ten years
2Owning a robot
3A second in/out EU referendum to take place before 2020
4Winning at Blackjack in Las Vegas
5Dying in a car accident
6Dying in a plane crash
7Traveling to space
8Being dealt a royal flush in poker
9Becoming a millionaire under the age of 40
10Being killed by a shark
1Winning at Slots in Las Vegas
2Winning at Craps in Las Vegas
3Owning property in London
4Becoming a CEO
5A trade deal being agreed with US
6Marrying a billionaire
7Living to the age of 100
8An asteroid hitting Earth
9Dying from food poisoning
10Becoming a NASA Astronaut
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