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. joe

    Did u ever think about who makes the money on the lottery? Well, it's the gobment. Think about it. They get almost 50% by taxing u on the winnings. They don't have to buy tickets. They just collect when people collect. They win everyday!!!!

    January 2, 2012 at 9:53 am | Report abuse |
    • AGuest9

      Good! Now, can I get someone to fix this bridge before it collapses???

      January 2, 2012 at 10:01 am | Report abuse |
    • ﺶCHEﺶ

      Nope! @AGuest9. No states will use its share of the lottery portions to fix bridges. That will be a political suicide. They will wait for the Fed. Gov't to provide such funds. Should they fail to act or provide such funding, and bridge(s) collapsed then; they will blame the Pres., US-congress and anyone in sight as far as the eyes could see. Also, you know each time a bridge collapses, there’s always someone on it or loss of lives. And that’s when the wailing and the political blame games begins. Most of these states lottery portions are used to renovate politicians offices and police overtime charges they deceitfully rake on citizens. Have you heard police officers in your Sates makes twice (2X) their basic income?

      January 2, 2012 at 4:18 pm | Report abuse |
  2. Walter

    Oh no!! This will mostly impact the poor, so the left will be screaming about how this is unfair to those who can least afford such an increase. Of course, the poor would be well advised to save their one or two dollars rather than through it down a rat hole – but I guess that's beside the point.

    January 2, 2012 at 9:56 am | Report abuse |
    • Ryan

      You're an idiot.

      January 2, 2012 at 10:07 am | Report abuse |
    • Lean6

      What would we have done if your hadn't grace us all with you whizdumb today? People dream and reach harder for dreams the more hopeless their waking lives are. How that makes the poor your enemy or nemesis makes no sense. I can't believe we've apparently got the 1 percent taking time to comment here on CNN.

      January 2, 2012 at 10:10 am | Report abuse |
    • atroy

      I'm sure you meant "throw" but you're not a liberal so you probably don't know the difference.

      January 2, 2012 at 10:11 am | Report abuse |
    • SCAtheist

      Why is it some moron without even a G.E.D. is attacking the poor?

      January 2, 2012 at 10:22 am | Report abuse |
    • jon

      I see Walter has nothing better to do with his life than to insult poor people because he has to put down other people to make himself feel better about his worthless life.

      January 2, 2012 at 10:30 am | Report abuse |
    • Ron Smith

      You guys are trashing this guy who is almost telling the truth. The lower class do play the lottery and waste money that should be going other places. Google the subject and you will see that he is telling the truth. He just did it in a sarcastic manner.

      January 2, 2012 at 10:47 am | Report abuse |
    • Well...

      My stupid mother became poor because of the one vice her self righteousness could not resist... Gambling. But I guess it's all good to those who she gave her money to. She probably should have been a junkey, at least she could have felt good while destroying her life.

      January 2, 2012 at 10:52 am | Report abuse |
  3. JohnnyInSNJ

    It pays to dream...yeah that price just went up too.

    January 2, 2012 at 9:58 am | Report abuse |
  4. granitejon

    Stupid greedy people. How many people really need 200 million dollars. It would be better to have 20 10,000,000 dollar winners. Besides, the only real winners are the government and the company running the game.

    January 2, 2012 at 9:59 am | Report abuse |
    • Matt

      Join a lotto pool and split your winnings then. Don't whine about other people's money.

      January 2, 2012 at 10:03 am | Report abuse |
    • AGuest9

      Let's see: 3 bedroom home: $325k, new car to commute to work: $25k, college tuition: $110k per child. Right there, after taxes, is $1 million. That's not including the balance of the $35k bill to have a pacemaker installed. Yeah, who NEEDS a million dollars.

      January 2, 2012 at 10:06 am | Report abuse |
    • Jason D

      Its the worry game..who is safer from financial worries then the person with more money...your living in a capitalist country..get used to it...people will always want more..the celebrity money presenters keep telling you in real terms if your accounts arnt increasing then your getting poorer very quickly, halfing in 10 years even if you have exactly the same amount of money.

      Plus the dreams factor in this country goes up all the time, how much to live like the beverly hillbillies, or donald trump, richie rich etc, they get kids into money want from babydom.

      If your happy with $10m imagine how happy you'll be with $100m, cars for $1m, houses for $10m, having staff, private jets, super yachts, islands, second, third, fourth homes, people think winning a great lottery will give them it and 'youd be a fool if you didnt' kind of advertising.

      Fact is look at your lifestyle now, its probably not terrible and all you really need is a little bit more to make your life a lot easier, imagine winning $10,000 and then keeping it in a savings account and drawing $1000 a year and putting it in your vacation account every january and then add some to it every money or payday, then you have saomething to look forward to for every year for 10 years...a presure release valve you can see for a decade...see not a big win but a big effect.

      My wife won $50k on a ticket a long time ago, paid for herself to go through college and now does her dream job because she got the qualifications and those were in the right area....not a lot of money for the powerball player but a life changer for the winner

      January 2, 2012 at 10:43 am | Report abuse |
  5. Kathy

    The reason that $10 scratch tickets sell is because the odds of winning are relatively good, usually 1:1000 of winning a decent prize. The Powerball, by contrast, has odds of 1:1,000,000 of winning a mere hundred dollars. Odds of winning the jackpot are 1:80,000,000. At $2 a ticket, thy won't sell.

    January 2, 2012 at 10:06 am | Report abuse |
    • Jason D

      They wont sell while megamilions is available for 1 until powerball goes more then $100M, why pay double to get higher odds of winning the same amount....thats makes no sense even to some people who think their retirment fund is going to be a win on the lottery

      January 2, 2012 at 10:35 am | Report abuse |
    • larvadog

      Do you generally just make stuff up? Currently the odds of winning the jackpot are 1:195,249,054. The odds of winning $100 is either 1:13,644 or 1:19,030. From the Powerball web site.

      January 2, 2012 at 10:51 am | Report abuse |
  6. Mainehunter

    It's Obama's fault

    January 2, 2012 at 10:07 am | Report abuse |
    • Wesley

      How does the Powerball have anything to do with the president?

      January 2, 2012 at 10:23 am | Report abuse |
  7. unowhoitsme

    Instead of one prize being 40 million, it should be 40 people winning 1 million dollars. I bet more people would play.

    January 2, 2012 at 10:14 am | Report abuse |
    • MICKY

      I LIKE THAT IDEA!!

      January 2, 2012 at 10:27 am | Report abuse |
    • jon

      That is the way it should be. People are too greedy for a multi million dollar jackpot when they would be well off with a million dollars. The powerball has a winner when? once a month or two if that instead of every drawing or every week? Stupid lottery thinks they need to raise the price. They will lose revenue if people are smart and stop playing.

      January 2, 2012 at 10:40 am | Report abuse |
  8. redneckssuck

    This will double my gambling costs!

    January 2, 2012 at 10:17 am | Report abuse |
  9. Gregg

    No problem, I'll just buy half as many.

    January 2, 2012 at 10:17 am | Report abuse |
  10. Chris

    They just cut the amount of revenue coming in everyone I know said they are done with it. We are done with the you have to play to loose game. Play the Mega Ball at least it only costs a $1 to loose.

    January 2, 2012 at 10:22 am | Report abuse |
  11. Puddin

    First Netflix, then Verizon, and now Powerball. All we lefts and rights know what to do......"just say NO!" By the way, Walter, I would be remiss if I didn't tell you that in your petty attempt to make this into a political rant toward the left, you used a word incorrectly. One doesn't "through" anyone or anything down a hole, one "throws." Just thought I would mention that, but I notice you "righties" do that a lot. 🙂

    January 2, 2012 at 10:23 am | Report abuse |
  12. Jason D

    The big robbery here are the poor and also the people who use set numbers..they have now doubled their gambling from the fear of having those numbers come up.....there are two draws a week and now going if you use a wheeling system and keep it at 5 lines even to a cost of $20 a week, thats $1000 a year to cover five lines on a 150,000,000 to one chance of winning....if you really want to make the sales jump then dont double the cost of the ticket, take the tax off the ticket cost so the winners get the lot here and now like europe..people will then like what they see and enjoy the lottery which has become more and more insoluble since theres games every other minute of the day.

    If you gambled $1 on every lottery in america youd be spending tens of thousands every year for one line with odds of at least 10,000 to one upto 150 million to one and youd almost certainly not win a dime

    January 2, 2012 at 10:33 am | Report abuse |
    • Jeremy M

      Wheeling system? Ha! Its a random game! There is no way to predict what the next numbers will be based on past performance. People doing this deserve to pay more for their stupidity.

      January 2, 2012 at 11:00 am | Report abuse |
  13. Gary

    We as non professional gamblers will only spend so much . I will now play every other week. I wonder if the goverment and the overseer of Power Ball put that in the trick bag.

    January 2, 2012 at 10:35 am | Report abuse |
  14. RayJacksonMS

    Stupid move. I'll either buy half as many or none at all since it won't be worth the drive to buy two tickets instead of five.

    January 2, 2012 at 10:36 am | Report abuse |
  15. George

    I'm no math wizard, but how does reducing the number of power balls reduce the chances of winning. My understanding of probability is that, as the number of possibilities decreases, my chance of matching a specific possibility increases. Perhaps they'll allow people to choose numbers that don't exist. Those who pick the now non-existant balls won't have a chance, and the government can really stick it to the stupid.

    January 2, 2012 at 10:36 am | Report abuse |
    • Eddie

      It was a poor choice of words for the article, but it didn't say it reduces your chances of winning, it reduces the odds. So for example, going from 10,000:1 to 5,000:1 is a reduction in odds and an increase in probability.

      January 2, 2012 at 11:22 am | Report abuse |
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