How to play powerball

How to play powerball

Pick the Best Play Format for You

When you play Powerball online on theLotter, you can expand your lottery experience with some advanced play formats. These will exponentially increase your chances of winning the Powerball, which makes them worth your attention. Here are the main formats you can try online:

Syndicates – Playing a Powerball syndicate means joining a group of registered players just like you. A syndicate includes a large number of tickets and the total price is divided into equal shares that you can buy. This means that you can have a lot of tickets in the game without making a colossal investment. If one or more tickets in the group have the winning numbers for Powerball prizes, the payout will be divided between the members of the syndicate according to the shares that they have purchased. For example, if a syndicate has a total of 100 shares, then the amount of the prize will be divided into 100.  Another advantage is that you don’t have to do anything to organize a syndicate when playing Powerball online with theLotter.

Bundles – If you thought it couldn’t get any better than this, let us tell you about bundles! These allow you to boost your odds of winning even more than syndicates do. Bundles are a great combination of a standard play and a syndicate. They always feature an individual ticket and at least one syndicate share. With bundles, you have multiple package choices, depending on the number of syndicate shares they include: Classic, Deluxe, and Premium.

Systematic Forms – On theLotter, you can play Powerball with every possible combination of 6 to 10 of your lucky numbers. This means that you will go into the game with a lot of tickets and a higher chance of scooping a prize. If you match even some of the winning numbers, you will have them on several tickets, which means that you can win more prizes. With systematic forms, you get your very own Powerball multiplier. If you also add Power Play to your tickets, you can boost your winnings through the roof.

The Powerball PowerPlay Multiplier

For a very low extra cost, you can play Powerball with the Power Play multiplier. Let us tell you how the multiplier works! All you have to do is check the Power Play option on your ticket and you will be on your way to getting bigger prizes.

During the Powerball draw, lottery officials also draw a random number from 2 to 5, which will be the multiplier for that draw. If you have the multiplier option on your ticket, your winnings will be increased by the number of times indicated by the Powerball PowerPlay number.

Please note that according to Powerball rules, the multiplier does not apply to the US Powerball jackpot. Even the second prize in the Powerball lottery, which is worth $1,000,000, can only be doubled for winners who have played Power Play on their ticket.

However, all other secondary prizes can be increased 2, 3, 4, or even 5 times, depending on that draw’s multiplier. Additionally, when the US Powerball jackpot is lower than $150 MILLION, secondary prizes (except the $1 million second prize) can be increased 10 times.

Big Lottery Service Winners

There are plenty of examples of people winning lotteries from different countries having used an online lottery service.

In May 2016 Matthias from Berlin won a staggering €22 million after betting on the outcome of Germany’s 6aus49 lottery. The 39-year-old IT consultant didn’t tell anyone for weeks as he couldn’t believe how much he had won. He’s now happily retired.

In February 2016, a winner from Cornwall, Ontario won US $1 million on Powerball using The Lotter, an online lottery messenger service. ‘P’ as he is known, was out watching his son play hockey when the draw happened only checking his numbers later that night to find out he was a winner. ‘P’ took the first flight out to New Jersey to collect his prize in person.

Back in 2012, two overseas players shared US $1.25 million won in the US, and in 2015, a player from Iraq claimed US $6.4 million on the Oregon Lottery. All three played using online lottery messenger services, and all three received the prize money they were entitled to — along with anonymity for the men from Iraq and Ontario.

The Secondary Prizes in the Powerball

If you don’t manage to win the incredible top Powerball prize, there are some fabulous secondary prizes that you can look forward to. The US Powerball offers a total of 9 prize divisions, including the jackpot.

Matching all of the main numbers, but not the Powerball, earns players a fabulous $1 million prize. The next prize tier is worth $50,000 and it goes to players who match 4 of the 5 main numbers with the Powerball.

Remember that the second prize in the Powerball can reach $2 million and the third prize can reach $100,000, $150,000, $200,000, $250,000, or even $500,000 for winners playing the Power Play option.

As for the following prize divisions (4th to 9th), they are worth $100.00 and less, but they will provide players with an excellent incentive to keep playing this fabulous lottery.  They will also be increased by the Power Play multiplier, which makes it well worth trying out.

The Powerball Jackpot

Over the years, the US Powerball lottery has established itself as the leader in the lottery world due to its enormous jackpots. It holds the world record for the largest jackpot ever awarded in a lottery game, with a massive prize of $1.58 BILLION, reached on January 13th, 2016.

The most important thing to know about the Powerball jackpot is that for each draw that does not have a jackpot winner, the amount rolls over and increases without any cap. There is no established prize limit for the first prize, so it can go up many times over.

As such, if there are no players claiming the jackpot, it will get bigger and bigger until one or more lucky players finally match the 5 main numbers and Powerball. This has made the Powerball lottery popular with players all over the world because everyone wants a share of the enormous prizes in America’s biggest lottery.

Power Play Prizes

The table below shows how much your prize could be multiplied by in the additional Power Play game, which can be entered for an extra US$1:

Prize Tier Base Prize Amount Power Play x2 Power Play x3 Power Play x4 Power Play x5 Power Play x10
Match 5 + Power Play Jackpot
Match 4 + Powerball + Power Play $1 million $2 million $2 million $2 million $2 million $2 million
Match 4 + Power Play $50,000 $100,000 $150,000 $200,000 $250,000 $500,000
Match 3 + Powerball + Power Play $100 $200 $300 $400 $500 $1,000
Match 3 + Power Play $100 $200 $300 $400 $500 $1,000
Match 2 + Powerball + Power Play $7 $14 $21 $28 $35 $70
Match 1 + Powerball + Power Play $7 $14 $21 $28 $35 $70
Match Powerball + Power Play $4 $8 $12 $16 $20 $40
Match Powerball $4 $8 $12 $16 $20 $40
*A Power Play Match 5 prize will be set at $2,000,000 regardless of the Power Play number drawn.

Power Play odds when 10x Multiplier is in Place (Jackpot Worth US$150 Million or Less):

Power Play Multiplier Odds
10x 1 in 43
5x 1 in 21.5
4x 1 in 14.33
3x 1 in 3.31
2x 1 in 1.79

Power Play odds when 10x Multiplier is not in Place (Jackpot Worth More than US$150 Million):

Power Play Multiplier Odds
5x 1 in 21
4x 1 in 14
3x 1 in 3.23
2x 1 in 1.75

The Powerball Prizes

There are 9 prize divisions in total in the US Powerball. The top prize begins at a mouth-watering $40 million and it only goes up from there. In fact, the Powerball was the first lottery to ever pass the $1 billion threshold. In 2016, it has set the world record for the largest prize ever awarded with its $1.58 billion pot. But there are 8 more reasons for you to play Powerball. One of them is the second prize is worth a full $1 million, and if you play with the Power Play multiplier, you can make it worth $2 million. Even if you only match the Powerball number, you can still win the complimentary 9th prize, which is worth $4.00, and that can get as high as $40.00 with Power Play.

Prize Division Match Prize
1st Prize 5+PB Jackpot
2nd Prize 5 $1,000,000
3rd Prize 4+PB $50,000
4th Prize 4 $100
5th Prize 3+PB $100
6th Prize 3 $7
7th Prize 2+PB $7
8th Prize 1+PB $4
9th Prize 0+PB $4

Rule Changes

Changes to the Powerball game rules came into effect on October 4th 2015 for the October 7th draw. The changes reduced the chances of a jackpot win and improved the chances of winning any other prize as the table below illustrates. The changes ensured that the Powerball jackpot grows faster and higher that it did prior to the October 7th 2015 draw.

Draws Main Number Range Powerball Number Range Winning Jackpot Odds Winning Any Prize Odds
Pre October 7th 2015 1 — 59 1 — 35 1 in 176 million 1 in 31.85
October 7th 2015 Onwards 1 — 69 1 — 26 1 in 292 million 1 in 24.87

State Variations

Some states have variations to certain aspects of the game; for example, the amount of time you have to claim your prize might depend on where you bought your ticket. The closing time for ticket sales changes between different states. Officially it can be anywhere from an hour or more before the draw takes place. California’s prize dividends are pari-mutuel meaning the prize amount will vary depending on the number of winners and tickets sold (this excludes the jackpot which is the same as the national publicised jackpot). To be clear, the game play is exactly the same from state to state.

Play Online

Contrary to popular belief, the official Powerball site stipulates that non-residents of the United States can participate in the Powerball lottery.

Canadians can participate in the Powerball lottery by using an online lottery service – a relatively new phenomenon that gives players access to numerous lottery games no matter where they’re based. It’s important to note that any online lottery service linked to or from Powerball.ca has been tested and vetted by the Powerball.ca editorial staff.

The Odds of Winning the US Powerball

Since the US Powerball is the most popular lottery in America and the entire world, there are millions of players who try their luck with every single draw. This ensures that the game’s jackpot reaches the tremendous amounts it has become well-known for.

While the odds of scoring the huge jackpot are quite difficult to beat with odds of 1 in 292 million, this fabulous prize is well worth trying because there is nothing like it out there in the lottery world. To stand any chance of winning the lottery, you’ve got to play it. So, submit your ticket and you could be that 1 in 292 million who takes home the fabulous Powerball jackpot.

The Power Play Multiplier

The US Powerball offers a multiplier called Power Play, which is an optional feature that can increase the prizes in the game 2, 3, 4, 5, or even 10 times. You have to pay an additional $1.00 fee to add the multiplier to your ticket, but it can take your winnings to new heights. The Power Play number is drawn from a separate barrel during the Powerball draw. The multiplier does not apply to the Powerball jackpot, it only increases the secondary prizes in the game. It can double the $1 million second prize and it can increase the other prizes in the game 2, 3, 4, or 5 times. When the jackpot is below the amount of $150 million, a 10x Power Play number is also entered in the game.

Powerball FAQ

We’ve gathered a few of the most frequently asked questions about the US Powerball, along with the answers to them. Take a look!

How do you play the Powerball lottery?

To play Powerball, you have to choose 5 main numbers from 1 to 69 and a Powerball number from 1 to 26. You have to choose a different set of numbers for each line you want to play.

Do you win with just the Powerball?

Yes, you can win a prize in the US Powerball by only matching the Powerball number. With this, you qualify for the 9th prize category, which amounts to $4.00.

How late can I buy Powerball tickets?

You can buy your Powerball tickets up until the cutoff time, which is 22:00 EST. When you play Powerball online, you can set to receive notifications about upcoming draws or you can set up subscriptions to never miss a draw.

Do you have to be a US citizen to play Powerball?

No, you do not have to be a US citizen to play Powerball. As per the official rules of the game, there is no citizenship restriction regarding participation.

How many draws is a Powerball ticket good for?

Each Powerball ticket can be used for one draw only. The number selection on the ticket will be compared to the drawn numbers from that day.

Do the Powerball numbers need to be in order?

No, there is no specific order that the Powerball numbers must be in. You only have to match the drawn main numbers and Powerball to qualify for the prizes in the game. However, the main numbers and the Powerball are not interchangeable as they come with separate guess ranges.

Do Quick picks ever win the lottery?

Yes, there are many Powerball jackpot winners who have won their fortunes by playing with random combinations of numbers. Probably the best-known example is Gloria MacKenzie, who was 85 at the time of her win. She scooped $590 million back in 2013 on a Quick Pick ticket that she bought after a good Samaritan let her cut in line at the lottery retailer’s office. Sometimes winning is fate!

Now that you know how Powerball works, it is high time you join the lottery players community and play Powerball online!

Even Non-US Citizens Can Play Power Play

You don’t need to be a US resident to purchase Powerball tickets and opt-in for the Power Play multiplier option. Provided you’re the minimum age to play, you’re eligible for Power Play.

What’s more, tickets are available every single day of the week until the cut-off time, which is on the night of the Powerball draws, typically about two hours before the draw.

You can also play several games on a single ticket, giving you more chances to win. However, when you opt-in for Power Play, it’s just the once for $1 and applies to all your games for that draw. On the other hand, you can choose to play several upcoming draws, too, and choose the Power Play multiplier option.

How to play Powerball

Following the April 8, 2020 drawing, guaranteed starting jackpot amounts and minimum jackpot increases will be eliminated, and future jackpot increases will be determined and announced by the Product Group prior to each drawing.In April 2020, Powerball announced changes to the starting jackpot amount. More information here.

Think of how to play Powerball in terms of colors and numbers. You must select numbers for five white balls and one red ball (the Powerball) for a total of six numbers. Click for a closer view of the playslip to learn more.

Here are the ways to play Powerball:

  • Choose your own numbers on a playslip. Pick five different numbers from 1 through 69; then, select one Powerball number from 1 through 26.
  • Or you can choose Easy Pick and let the computer choose your numbers
  • You can also use a combination of these play methods: Pick some of your favorite numbers, and let the computer fill in the rest.
  • Each play (six numbers) costs $2.
  • Powerball draws are held every Wednesday and Saturday at 11 p.m.

FAQ

Find out more about PowerBall in the frequently asked questions below. Visit the general FAQs page for more information about playing lotteries in South Africa.

Show All Answers

+ What time does the draw take place?

The winning PowerBall numbers are drawn at approximately 21:00 every Tuesday and Friday.

+ How much does it cost to play?

PowerBall costs R5 per board and PowerBall Plus costs an additional R2.50 to play.

+ When was the first PowerBall draw?

PowerBall was introduced in 2009 by then-lottery operator Gidani as another opportunity for players to win multi-million rand prizes. The first draw took place on 23rd October that year, with a R30 million jackpot on offer – which was won that very draw.

+ What is the biggest ever jackpot?

The record for the highest ever PowerBall jackpot was set in February 2019, when a man from Capetown matched all five main numbers and the PowerBall to win R232 million. He chose to remain anonymous; the only information revealed about the winner was that he was a man in his fifties who worked in a blue collar job.

How to Win Powerball

Now that you have your tickets, it’s time to wait for the twice-weekly drawings to see if your Powerball numbers come up. How do you win Powerball?

If you’ve matched all five numbers plus the Powerball number, you win the current jackpot. Congratulations! It’s important to note, however, that the Power Play multiplier doesn’t apply to jackpot wins.

According to Powerball rules, if you match five numbers but miss the Powerball, you can win $1 million (if you do not purchase Power Play) or $2 million (if you do purchase Power Play). Note that the Power Play multipliers do not apply here. Selecting Power Play just increases your win from $1 million to $2 million.

Without Power Play, four numbers plus the Powerball number wins $50,000. With Power Play, you can win between $100,000 and $250,000. Without the Powerball, matching four numbers wins between $100 and $500 — the same amount you’ll win if you match three balls and the Powerball.

Three balls by themselves, or two balls and the Powerball, wins between $7 and $35. One ball plus the Powerball or the Powerball by itself wins between $4 and $20.

If the annuity jackpot is equal to or more than $150 million, the 10x Power Play ball is removed from the drawing.

How to Play Powerball Online

The Powerball is the biggest lottery in the United States, but you do not have to be a U.S. citizen or travel to America to play the game. There is a simple and convenient way to play the US Powerball lottery online from anywhere you are. You can use the online services of theLotter, the world-leading lottery messenger service.

There are many advantages to playing Powerball online on theLotter. The company provides secure purchases, multiple ways to engage with the Powerball lottery, discounts for passionate players, and live support via chat or toll-free phone calls.

To play the game, all you have to do is choose between a standard game, a syndicate, and a bundle. The standard game has a minimum offer of 3 lines, but you can choose to play up to 25 lines at once. You can either choose the numbers for each line manually or click on Quick Pick to get random numbers. Then, hit the play button and you are almost done.

theLotter services save you the trouble of traveling to the United States to buy Powerball tickets. While you comfortably sit on your couch, there’s a local agent who buys the tickets for you, with the numbers you chose. Before the draw takes place, you can see a scanned copy of the already purchased tickets in your theLotter account.

How to Play

While picking numbers every week is one way to play, it’s not your only option. Let’s take a closer look at the different ways to play the game.

First, you have Easy Pick, which lets the computer choose six random numbers for you. You can also do a combination; you select some numbers, and the computer picks the rest.

You also can purchase Power Play. For an additional $1 per play, you can earn between two and 10 times more money if you win a non-jackpot prize. The Power Play can multiply your winnings by two, three, four, five or 10 times based upon the Power Play ball that is drawn in a given drawing. There are 24 2x balls, 13 3x balls, three 4x balls and 5x balls each and one 10X ball.

A Multi-draw play means you’re playing with the same numbers over and over again. You can play up to 26 times in a row with the same six numbers.

A Repeat play means you’re getting the same numbers repeatedly for one drawing. You can purchase the same numbers up to 20 times per drawing.

There are Game Machines in 1,500+ stores across Virginia that allow you to skip the checkout lines and get your Powerball tickets without the hassle of going to a cashier. You can also create a Virginia Lottery account and purchase your tickets online while you are anywhere in Virginia.

FAQ

If there’s anything else you need to know about USA Powerball, you may be able to find the answer below.

Show All Answers

+ What time do Powerball draws take place?

Powerball draws occur every Wednesday and Saturday at 22:59 Eastern Time. Because much of the USA observes Daylight Saving Time and South Africa doesn’t, the draw time according to South Africa local time changes at certain points in the year. The table below shows exactly when draws occur throughout the year:

USA Powerball Draw Schedule
Start Date End Date Draw Time In USA Draw Time In South Africa
Second Sunday in March First Sunday in November 22:59 EDT 04:59 SAST
First Sunday in November Second Sunday in March 22:59 EST 05:59 SAST

+ When did Powerball start?

The first USA Powerball draw took place on 22 April 1992, with just 15 states taking part and players required to select five main numbers from 1 to 45, plus a Powerball number from a separate set of 1 to 45.

+ Is there a maximum jackpot?

No. The jackpot starts at $40 million and will keep growing until it is won.

+ What is the biggest prize ever won?

The largest lottery jackpot in history came when three ticket holders – from the states of California, Florida and Tennessee – shared a record $1.58 billion Powerball prize.

+ What is an annuity?

Jackpot winners in the USA have the choice between receiving the prize money in one big upfront payment, or spread out in regular ‘annuity’ payments over 29 years. The cash payout is always less than the annuity, as the interest generated over the 29 years of the annuity is also paid out to the player.

+ Can you win the jackpot from outside the USA?

Yes, third-party lottery betting and concierge websites allow you to participate in Powerball from outside the USA and in both cases you would be eligible to win all the prizes available, including the jackpot. For more information on how it works, visit the page.

+ Is USA Powerball the same as South Africa PowerBall?

No. Although the two games share a common name, they are completely unrelated to each other. The rules of playing, prizes, and odds of winning in both games are different.

Power Play

Power Play is an add-on feature that allows players to multiply their non-jackpot prizes, for just $1 more per play! With Power Play, players can win $2 million for matching the five white balls or multiply his/her other non-jackpot prizes two to five times when the advertised jackpot is over $150 million, and up to 10 times when the advertised jackpot is $150 million or less. A player must choose the Power Play option on his/her POWERBALL playslip or tell the retailer that he/she wishes to purchase a Power Play ticket. The multiplier number will be selected just before the draw.

($2) POWERBALL

($1) POWER PLAY

On Jackpots upto $150 million

Match Base Game Odds X2 X3 X4 X5 X10
5 of 5 + PB *$20,000,000 1:292,201,338
5 of 5 $1,000,000 1:11,688,053.52 $2,000,000 $2,000,000 $2,000,000 $2,000,000 $2,000,000
4 of 5 + PB $50,000 1:913,129.18 $100,000 $150,000 $200,000 $250,000 $500,000
4 of 5 $100 1:36,525.17 $200 $300 $400 $500 $1,000
3 of 5 + PB $100 1:14,494.11 $200 $300 $400 $500 $1,000
3 of 5 $7 1:579.76 $14 $21 $28 $35 $70
2 of 5 + PB $7 1:701.33 $14 $21 $28 $35 $70
1 of 5 + PB $4 1:91.98 $8 $12 $16 $20 $40
Powerball $4 1:38.32 $8 $12 $16 $20 $40
Overall 1:24.87

*Jackpots start at $20 million and roll over until won. The jackpot prize will be shared among jackpot winners in all POWERBALL states. All non-jackpot prizes are set payouts. If funds are insufficient to pay set prizes, non-jackpot prizes maybe paid on a pari-mutuel basis and could be lower than the amount shown.

How to Win

Prior to the official POWERBALL drawing conducted by MUSL, a Power Play multiplier number (between 2 and 5; 10 is included when the advertised jackpot is $150 million or less) is selected and will be displayed during the draw, in which five out of 69 numbers (white balls) and a Powerball number between 1 and 26 (red ball) will be drawn at random. There are nine ways to win POWERBALL prizes by matching the winning numbers drawn in the official drawing for the date played. Match all five numbers plus the Powerball to win the jackpot or match any of the non-jackpot-winning combinations to win other great cash prizes!

All POWERBALL prizes are set payouts, except the jackpot. The jackpot prize will be shared among winners in all POWERBALL states. The jackpot will be paid in 30 annual payments or a one-time cash payment of a reduced amount. If there is no jackpot winner, the money in the jackpot pool rolls over to the next POWERBALL drawing.

All POWERBALL prizes must be claimed in the state where the ticket was purchased. POWERBALL prizes must be claimed within 180 days after the winning drawing date. Federal income taxes will be withheld from POWERBALL prizes as required by the Internal Revenue Code at the time payments are made. Any additional federal, state and/or local taxes shall be the responsibility of the winner. Prizes of up to $1 million may be claimed at a Florida Lottery district office. Prizes of more than $1 million must be claimed at Lottery Headquarters in Tallahassee. Read more about claiming Lottery prizes.

US Powerball – Rules of the Game

As per the official Powerball rules, for each line you play, choose 5 main numbers from a guess range of 1 to 69 and a Powerball from 1 to 26. Once you have selected the numbers you want, your ticket for America’s biggest lottery is in!

You can also opt for the Power Play multiplier, for a small additional cost of $1.00 per line. This option can increase your winnings 2, 3, 4, or even 5 times.

If you successfully guess all the main numbers and the Powerball, then the huge jackpot is yours and you go home a BIG winner! Guessing the main numbers without the Powerball will win you the second prize, which is worth a full million.

Powerball Prizes

Powerball game prizes are split into divisional prize pools just as with the other lotto games. These run from Division 1 which is the top prize through to Division 9 which is the bottom prize. Here are the prize divisions and odds (per game):

PRIZE DIVISION COMBINATION ODDS PRIZE POOL %
Division 1 7 Numbers + Powerball 1:134,490,400 35%
Division 2 7 Numbers 1:7,078,443 1.8%
Division 3 6 Numbers + Powerball 1:686,176 1.1%
Division 4 6 Numbers 1:36,115 2%
Division 5 5 Numbers + Powerball 1:16,943 1.5%
Division 6 4 Numbers + Powerball 1:1,173 9.7%
Division 7 5 Numbers 1:892 7.6%
Division 8 3 Numbers + Powerball 1:188 15%
Division 9 2 Numbers + Powerball 1:66 26.3%

For Powerball System Entries see: Powerball Systems Prize Table

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