WASHINGTON — With a record-breaking prize on the line, many people who don't often play the lottery may consider throwing in a few bucks for their chance at $1.9 billion.
Monday's top prize is the largest in history for any U.S. lottery game after no one won the grand prize on Saturday. The cash option, which most people pick, currently stands at $929.1 million.
While Powerball tickets are sold in all but five states, buying tickets online is much more restrictive.
Can I buy Powerball tickets online?
Whether or not you're able to buy a Powerball ticket online depends on your location.
Currently, the lotteries in just nine states and the District of Columbia offer ways to purchase Powerball tickets online or through their lottery's mobile app. Those states include: Georgia, Illinois, Kentucky, Michigan, New Hampshire, North Carolina, North Dakota, Pennsylvania and Virginia.
If you don't live in one of those states, you may not be out of luck completely.
Another option that's popped up in recent years is courier services, like Lotto.com and Jackpocket, which allow players to order lottery tickets via a mobile app or website. Those companies go and buy the ticket on the player's behalf from a licensed retailer in their state, then upload an image of it on the app and securely store the physical ticket.
But location is again key, because these courier services are not available everywhere.
Jackpocket, which operates in 13 states and Washington, D.C., has seen a big surge in orders as the Powerball climbed into record-breaking territory.
Peter Sullivan, Jackpocket's CEO and founder, said the company had the highest number of players and orders in its history for Wednesday's $1.2 billion Powerball drawing.
Those Wednesday orders included $1 million winners in New York and Colorado. According to Sullivan, with big wins like that Jackpocket transfers the physical ticket to the player in a secure fashion so that they may claim their prize directly from the state lottery.
Sullivan said they've had 22 players win prizes worth $1 million or more, including 9 from Powerball and 5 in Mega Millions.
Jackpocket is currently available in Arkansas, Colorado, Idaho, Minnesota, Montana, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New Mexico, New York, Ohio, Oregon, Texas, Washington, DC, and West Virginia.
Lotto.com, which also operates in Texas, Colorado, New Jersey and New York, said it's seen a 1,181% increase in Powerball tickets sold this month compared to last month as the jackpot surpassed $1 billion.
What time is the Powerball drawing?
The next drawing will take place on Monday at 10:59 p.m. Eastern (9:59 p.m. Central Time, 8:59 p.m. Mountain Time, 7:59 p.m. Pacific Time)
What days are the Powerball drawing?
Back in Aug. 2021, Powerball shifted to three drawings a week in an effort to build larger prizes and boost sales. The drawings currently happen every Monday, Wednesday and Saturday.
How late can you buy Powerball tickets?
The cut-off times for buying Powerball tickets vary by state. Usually, it's within one or two hours of the scheduled drawing. However, you should check with your local lottery. Tickets cost $2 per play.
What are the largest US lottery jackpots ever won?
- $1.6 billion (estimated) Powerball, Nov. 5, 2022
- $1.586 billion, Powerball, Jan. 13, 2016 (three tickets, from California, Florida, Tennessee)
- $1.537 billion, Mega Millions, Oct. 23, 2018 (one ticket, from South Carolina)
- $1.337 billion, Mega Millions, July 29, 2022 (one ticket, from Illinois)
- $1.05 billion, Mega Millions, Jan. 22, 2021 (one ticket, from Michigan)
- $768.4 million, Powerball, March 27, 2019 (one ticket, from Wisconsin)
- $758.7 million, Powerball, Aug. 23, 2017 (one ticket, from Massachusetts)
- $731.1 million, Powerball, Jan. 20, 2021 (one ticket, from Maryland)
- $687.8 million, Powerball, Oct. 27, 2018 (two tickets, from Iowa and New York)
- $656 million, Mega Millions, March 30, 2012 (three tickets, from Kansas, Illinois and Maryland)