Powerball tickets to double in price
Powerball drawings are on Wednesday and Saturdays.
January 2nd, 2012
07:44 AM ET

Powerball tickets to double in price

Lottery players, your chance for millions is about to cost you twice as much.

The Multi-State Lottery Association, which administers the Powerball game, says the price of a single ticket will double to $2 beginning January 15.

"After 20 years at the same price and after watching scratch ticket sales take off with $2, $3, $5, $10, $20, and even $50 tickets, we are going to make the big jump," the association says on its website.

When the price increases, jackpots will start at $40 million, up from $20 million now, and will increase twice as fast, lottery officials say. The average jackpot is predicted to be $255 million, nearly double the current $141 million. The lottery association hopes that will increase sales.

"We know that most folks play for the big jackpots and this game will have more of those more often," it says on its website.

Officials say the odds of winning the jackpot will decrease slightly as the number of red balls, or powerballs, will decrease from 39 to 35.

They also say the pricier game should produce more millionaires, as second prize - for matching the five white balls without the powerball - increases from $200,000 to $1 million.

The Power Play option, which doubles all prizes except the jackpot, will remain, for an additional dollar on the ticket purchase, according to the lottery's website.

Powerball drawings are at 10:59 p.m. ET Wednesdays and Saturdays. Powerball is available in 42 states plus the District of Columbia and the U.S. Virgin Islands.

Officials say the cost of a single ticket for the MegaMillions game, drawn on Tuesday and Fridays, will remain at $1. Forty states plus the District of Columbia and the U.S. Virgin Islands participate in MegaMillions.
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Filed under: Gambling • Lotto
soundoff (289 Responses)
  1. w0wie

    Shouldn't the headline read "Stupid people who can't do math to stop buying lottery tickets" or maybe "Lottery officials follow Netflix, Bank of America, and Verizon in bad decision making"?

    January 2, 2012 at 11:28 pm | Report abuse |
  2. TriXen

    Good. That means rednecks will have less money to spend on booze and there will be a lot fewer fat, bucktoothed women with black eyes.

    January 3, 2012 at 12:33 am | Report abuse |
    • P.Y.

      and why is so many lottery winnings go to New York and California?Never heard about this two having "rednecks"infestation.

      January 3, 2012 at 3:16 pm | Report abuse |
    • jim

      Why don't you come down south and say that to someones face.

      January 3, 2012 at 7:17 pm | Report abuse |
    • John

      I don't think that was necessarily aimed at southerners; I've been all over upstate New York and I can tell you that rednecks in the South don't have anything on rural residents there – they are every bit as "backwoods" as south Mississippi...

      March 27, 2012 at 1:24 pm | Report abuse |
  3. kaos

    its time we wake up people... the longer we sit around and argue about things that dont matter is the longer the government has to take advantage of us. i see so much potential in the middle of all this bickering and arguing... if we would just aim our unhappiness and discontent at the true source of it rather then pecking each other to death... we could really accomplish something. america... its time to mobilize and take our country back from the politicans and weathy that are right now sitting somewhere laughing it up on our dime. ripping at each other will not accomplish anything.... i feel that ripping them will... generation x is building momentum... now is the time. what will you do?

    January 3, 2012 at 1:06 am | Report abuse |
    • WiscBadger

      "our dime" ? It's only yours if you earned it.

      January 3, 2012 at 10:15 am | Report abuse |
    • Grwily

      Agreed! Everyone should pay attention to how their representation in Washington votes. If you don't like it don't re-elect them. In fact, if they play partisan ball don't vote for them. Re-elect no one until we get a group of people willing to work together, make hard decissions, and stick to them.

      January 3, 2012 at 1:37 pm | Report abuse |
    • jq

      shut up

      March 27, 2012 at 6:14 pm | Report abuse |
  4. ¤.¤

    TriXen, you're delusional is you think that "rednecks" are the only people who but lottery tiXs.

    January 3, 2012 at 3:04 am | Report abuse |
  5. Nancy

    Well so much for that game. how stupid do they think the public is? oh well, guess i will stick to earning $$ the old fashioned way...earning it!! (at least that is still a sure bet)

    January 3, 2012 at 5:30 am | Report abuse |
  6. Igor

    If one is truly lucky he or she will find the winning ticket. No purchase necessary and the total odds of that aren't much worse then the odds of winning when buying the actual ticket.

    January 3, 2012 at 7:43 am | Report abuse |
    • iron au

      Umm, wow you can't do math. True the odds of a lottery ticket winning are slim. The odds a valid ticket being lost and found by you are slimmer still. The odds that a valid winning ticket being lost and found by you is the product of those two very slim chances which isn't even worth considering.

      I don't think ANYBODY in the history of Powerball has FOUND a winning ticket. But many many people have won Powerball.

      January 3, 2012 at 1:16 pm | Report abuse |
  7. JMissal

    We play just for fun and have bought $10 worth of tickets weekly with the powerplay; that gives us five chances. With this price increase, we decided we're only going to buy ONE chance weekly, thereby reducing OUR contribution to the fund by 60%. I think there are many others like us....so apparently the association administrators thought that the Netflix and BOA business plan is a success.

    January 3, 2012 at 9:00 am | Report abuse |
  8. Larry

    why does this article state "the price of a single ticket will double to $2 beginning January 15"? There are NO Powerball drawings on SUNs, January 15th is a Sunday. Are they adding or moving the current WED/SAT draw dates?

    January 3, 2012 at 9:28 am | Report abuse |
    • Lottery Loser

      Because they sell tickets every day!

      January 3, 2012 at 10:08 am | Report abuse |
    • Cindy Maddy

      Correct. Immediately following the closing of ticket sales for the Saturday drawing, the prices will increase on tickets for the 'following' drawing, which likely won't be available for purchase until after midnight Saturday. Even if they can patch the machines before midnight, it's a lot simpler to state 'the 15th' than to explain the details of exactly what time they will be available for purchase following Saturday's drawings.

      January 3, 2012 at 11:04 am | Report abuse |
    • Cindy Maddy

      And yes... it 'may' be possible to buy the tickets for drawings after the 15th, 'before' the 15th... who knows if they'll implement that or not, but I'm sure they have it covered. I'm just trying to clarify for the 'simple' scenario of 'real-time' purchases. Its not rocket science.

      January 3, 2012 at 11:09 am | Report abuse |
  9. kaos

    Hey wiscbadger. made thirtyfive thousand last year... wanna guess how much the government took? i go to work everyday... do you? if so, good. i work hard and pay taxes. i have a right to open my mouth. do you? i earn all my "dimes"

    January 3, 2012 at 11:07 am | Report abuse |
  10. pete

    no more..A doller and a dream. 🙁

    January 3, 2012 at 11:11 am | Report abuse |
  11. Commentator

    Maybe folks could use some of the winnings to learn how to spell on their posts. And if they are feeling even giddier they could learn that saying, "Where are you at" is not correct, even though you hear people say it all the time.

    January 3, 2012 at 11:26 am | Report abuse |
  12. Jeff

    You need to check and correct the story. Decreasing the number of red Powerball numbers Increases the odds, not decreases them.

    January 3, 2012 at 1:19 pm | Report abuse |
    • MacGirl

      Thank you Jeff! I am not a math wiz, but that boggled my mind when I saw that they had written "Officials say the odds of winning the jackpot will decrease slightly as the number of red balls, or powerballs, will decrease from 39 to 35." If your chances of having the correct powerball go from 1 in 39 to 1 in 35, that is better odds! Guess the "Officials" aren't math wizzes either!

      January 3, 2012 at 2:19 pm | Report abuse |
  13. Doug

    I do not play Powerball and now I never will. But I really hate those people who think they are holier than thou because they do not buy a lotto ticket every now and then. It is no different than paying 5 bucks for a Starbucks over making a cup of coffee at home. Unless you are a complete miser, everyone spends a few bucks a week on something they don't need. Whether it is a few extra bucks on going to an evening movie instead of a matinee.Or that extra little snack when you go grocery shopping. At least a lotto ticket has a 1 in a billion (exageration) chance of paying me back. And most only spend a buck or two. And for those that say it is a waste of money, I say there are too many lotto millionaires walkin around to support their arguement. I do not buy a ticket expecting to win, but if it happens to, I will not complain.

    January 3, 2012 at 3:10 pm | Report abuse |
  14. lottotimes

    Will this change to the Powerball be a hit or will it just push plaeys in the direction of the very similar Mega Millions lotto draw which is still only $1 to play?

    January 5, 2012 at 10:41 am | Report abuse |
  15. Steve


    You always have a second chance of winning with the scratch tickets.(Points for Prizes)

    January 20, 2012 at 10:40 am | Report abuse |
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