If you’ve ever played a lottery-style game, you’re familiar with the process of selecting a set of numbers and hoping to win. Lottery games are among the most popular forms of gambling in the US, attracting tens of millions of players each week.
If you want to play the lottery, you’ve got two options: visiting a local retailer or playing online from home. While both methods are legal, going to a store will require you to visit the location in person and purchase tickets in cash, which may be less convenient than playing online.
Online Lottery Sites
The simplest way to play the lottery online is through an official website operated by a state lottery. These websites allow you to enter state-level and national lottery draws from the comfort of your home. They also offer a number of features, including live results and past drawing history.
Online subscriptions are a great option for players who would prefer to purchase a fixed amount of tickets at once and be guaranteed to participate in a certain number of drawings every month. These subscriptions typically cost a few dollars per month and are available through many states’ official lottery websites.
Buy More Tickets
Buying more tickets can increase your chances of winning the lottery. In addition to purchasing single tickets, you can also buy multiple tickets in bulk for games like Powerball and Mega Millions. The best online lottery sites allow you to purchase up to 100 tickets at once and you can choose from a range of ticket sizes.
Join a Syndicate
Online lottery syndicates are groups of people who pool their money together to purchase a set number of lottery tickets. Winnings are then shared based on the number of tickets each player purchased. They can be very lucrative and can significantly improve your odds of winning the lottery.
Pay with Credit or Debit Card
Most online lottery sites accept payments using MasterCard and Visa credit cards. Some sites also accept PayPal.
Play Instant Win Scratchcards
While most states require you to go to a lottery store in person to buy lottery tickets, a growing number of lottery retailers are offering mobile apps that allow you to purchase your tickets directly from the app. Apps like Jackpocket are the most prominent of these, and they allow you to choose custom or instant number selection, as well as skip the checkout step.
If you win a prize worth $600 or more, you’ll have to fill out a W2-G form and send it to the IRS. Several online lottery sites will handle this for you, while other services will automatically withhold 24% of the prize in federal taxes.
iLottery in Washington DC
In February 2021, Washington DC launched its iLottery, an online lottery service that allows residents to purchase tickets and play games without leaving their homes. This service requires you to be at least 18 years old and present in the district.