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. Jason

    Anyone who wastes money on the lotto is not very smart. You have better odds of getting hit by lightning than to win the jackpot. It is a complete waste of money.

    January 2, 2012 at 10:42 am | Report abuse |
  2. Dan

    It's a tax on people that are bad at math.

    January 2, 2012 at 10:46 am | Report abuse |
    • simon

      No kidding. A desperation tax.

      I still play, which I guess makes me a desperate moron. Oh well.

      January 2, 2012 at 11:09 am | Report abuse |
  3. PhilG.

    Guess I'll be playing Mega Millions from now on-goodbye Powerball.

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

      megamillions will announce their increase as soon as the Powerball announcement seals the deal with consumers. If Powerball passes, look for all $1 tickets to cost $2 –

      January 2, 2012 at 11:17 am | Report abuse |
  4. John B

    Interestingly this cuts my chances at winning in half.....as if I had a chance at winning anyway.

    January 2, 2012 at 10:48 am | Report abuse |
    • jbloe

      This does not cut your CHANCE of winning. It doubles the cost of playing – and the cost of losing. What it really does is double their profit for providing you thrill of losing.

      January 2, 2012 at 11:45 am | Report abuse |
  5. LouAZ

    Only sure fire way to DOUBLE your money . . . take it out of your pocket, fold it in half, put it back in your pocket.
    Works every time. (But I'll still buy a ticket every now and then when it gets over 100 million)

    January 2, 2012 at 10:52 am | Report abuse |
  6. jason

    It would be better to have the chances of winning much lower. Or have multiple winners. One winner of $200 million is dumb. How about 50 people winning $500k or a Million. That would get more players.

    January 2, 2012 at 10:52 am | Report abuse |
    • Yohan

      If that happened, they would lose a lot of players

      January 2, 2012 at 11:06 am | Report abuse |
    • jon

      They would just lose the dumb players that know nothing about odds of winning.

      January 2, 2012 at 11:27 am | Report abuse |
  7. LOL

    Great, it is an increase in STUPID tax...

    January 2, 2012 at 10:54 am | Report abuse |
  8. George

    Yes - the main reason I don't play Powerball is because winning $200 million isn't enough. I need at least $250 million to retire comfortably. I wonder if the average time from winning to bankruptcy will increase proportional to the size of the jackpot or do most people go bankrupt just as fast regardless of the amount of their winnings.

    January 2, 2012 at 10:56 am | Report abuse |
  9. Greg

    If you don't play you can't –LOSE–

    January 2, 2012 at 10:57 am | Report abuse |
  10. jon

    The lottery commission is so stupid. They need to make it easier to win and they would have more players. If the odds were better so their would be a winner at every drawing. It is better to have 20 people win 1 million each than it is for 1 person to win 20 million. Then there would be more wealthy people in the country for a better economy.

    January 2, 2012 at 10:57 am | Report abuse |
    • jonn

      Yeah, a multi-billion dollar business hasn't done a lick of research on what people want. Are you thick??

      January 2, 2012 at 11:06 am | Report abuse |
    • Idiotic

      A better stimulus to the economy is to take that $2 and buy coffee.

      January 2, 2012 at 11:12 am | Report abuse |
    • jon

      I already proved my point when i told this to the state lottery commisioner who didn't believe me. Then she realized she was losing money and changed her mind.

      January 2, 2012 at 11:25 am | Report abuse |
    • Jon

      You've got it backwards. More people play the higher the jackpots go. Low jackpots would result in nobody playing and therefore not generating any revenue.

      January 2, 2012 at 11:30 am | Report abuse |
  11. disconnected

    I guess that's more for the ceo alot more. very few people ever win. Greed wins again. It was fun to put in a buck and hope. 2 bucks is a bit much.

    January 2, 2012 at 10:58 am | Report abuse |
  12. alexpdx

    Average jackpot estimated to be around $255 million. Even assuming a lump sum payment and after Uncle Sam takes his share, you're still left with a perverse amount of money. It's bloody ridiculous.

    January 2, 2012 at 11:06 am | Report abuse |
  13. taylor

    Who came up with this brilliant move? Did the fools running Netflix move over to Powerball? At $1 a chance people don't think much about the purchase given the tiny chance at an actual win. At $2, the game will fail.

    January 2, 2012 at 11:08 am | Report abuse |
  14. Tony

    This is all about making more" money for the "lottery association." It has nothing to do with "us" having a chance to become millionaires. As the article states, the odds of winning will "decrease." So, their profits will increase. If the association wants to make more profits, just change the lottery as such: when the jackpot reaches 100 million $, have 100 drawings for 1 million dollars each. As a poor man, I would buy 10-times more tickets if I "thought" my chances of winning was increased 100 times. After one month, wouldn't it be nice to have 100 new millionaires instead of have one person with 200+ million $?

    January 2, 2012 at 11:13 am | Report abuse |
    • Never Tell

      I absolutely agree!!!

      January 2, 2012 at 12:58 pm | Report abuse |
  15. otto

    the greed hits you from around ,congress, now powerball, gas,food, schools are loseing teachers ,the rich get richer cause there the only ones that play..not playing any more so the poor quit but the exta dollar makes up for the POOR..

    January 2, 2012 at 11:17 am | Report abuse |
    • Never Tell

      What??? Your post makes NO sense!

      January 2, 2012 at 12:55 pm | Report abuse |
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