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Lottery players struggling to buy or cash in tickets

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EDMONTON — With a $70 million jackpot up for grabs in this Tuesday’s Lotto Max draw, some lottery players are finding it hard to buy tickets.

“The majority of retailers are still open but we are seeing that several stores and some chains are deciding to suspend lottery for the moment,” said Kevin van Egdom, communications director with the Western Canada Lottery Corporation.

However some of the retailers that will sell tickets won’t redeem winning ones from customers.

“We do certainly want them to redeem winning tickets for people but I understand right now there is a reluctance by some retailers to be handling cash, handling other people’s tickets,” said van Egdom.

So how do people redeem their winnings? The WCLC says you’re best to hang onto a ticket until the pandemic is over or you find a retailer that will pay it out.

Winning tickets of $1,000.00 or more can be mailed to the corporation. And for big winners, like the four Albertans who each won a million dollars in Friday’s Max Millions draw, they’re urged to contact WCLC by phone.

“We’ll certainly talk to the winner and figure out what works for everyone, staying safe and seeing where we get to with these prize claims,” van Egdom said.

The WCLC is also expected to announce a plan this week about how it will handle tickets that have expired since March 17, 2020 or are set to expire.

“We don’t want anyone to miss out on a prize because of what’s going on right now,” said van Egdom.

Since people have been asked to self-isolate, the WCLC says retail lotto sales have dropped. But there has been an increase in people buying what’s called ‘Advance Play.’ It’s one ticket that is good for 25 consecutive draws.

There’s also been a spike in the number of online lottery subscriptions.

“We check it for you, you don’t have to worry about it. We take care of all the prizes for you as well so that absolutely does get rid of that back and forth to the store during this time,” van Egdom said.

Once winnings reach $50.00, the WCLC will either mail a cheque or deposit it into your bank account.

Because the lotteries are a fundraiser for provinces across the country, the WCLC hopes draws will continue through the pandemic.

“Right now the lottery is still available. I don’t know what’s going to happen and I hope we’re able to keep going and I hope things get easier for everyone soon.”

With a $70 million jackpot up for grabs in this Tuesday’s Lotto Max draw, some lottery players are finding it hard to buy tickets.

Lotteries

Prize Payout Offices 2020 Holiday Hours

For St. Albert and Calgary Prize Payout offices

AGLC Prize Payout Offices open to the public by appointment only

AGLC Prize Payout Offices are processing claims for players with the following requirements:

  • For the safety of staff and players, all in-person claims are by appointment only. Walk-in claims will not be accepted.
  • In-person appointments are available Monday to Friday, 8:30 a.m. to 3:30 p.m.
  • Prizes between $1,001 and $9,999.99 can be claimed in both Calgary and St. Albert. Prizes of $10,000 and up can only be claimed in St. Albert.
  • Winners can still claim prizes under $1,000 at retail. We recommend that claimants check with the retailer first to be sure they are able to pay out the prize.
  • Both locations are implementing the health measures outlined by Alberta’s Chief Medical Officer of Health, including physical distancing and disinfecting all appropriate surfaces between appointments.
  • AGLC staff are pleased to assist players and will be available by email and phone to answer questions or concerns.
  • Safety protocols, as advised by Alberta’s Chief Medical Officer of Health, have been implemented to ensure the safety of players and staff.

To book an appointment please call:

  • St. Albert Prize Payout Office – 780-447-8616
  • Calgary Prize Payout Office – 403-663-8301
  • Email: [email protected]

Please read our Frequently Asked Questions for the re-opening of the AGLC Prize Payout Offices.

How to claim a lottery prize

Congratulations! You’ve won a prize. Now what?

Take a look at the information below to get you started. Your prize amount determines what you do.

Up to $100

Prizes may be claimed:

  • Through a Lottery Ticket Retailer

$101 to $1,000

Prizes may be claimed:

Through a Lottery Ticket Retailer: Ask the retailer if they have enough cash to pay your prize. Lottery retailers are not obligated to pay prizes over $100. If a ticket wins $100.01 or more, the retailer can cancel the validation and direct you to claim your prize at another retailer or from an Alberta Prize Payout office.

By mail, through WCLC:

Western Canada Lottery Corporation
Prize Payout
10th Floor, 125 Garry Street
Winnipeg, MB R3C 4J1

  • In person, through Alberta Prize Payout Offices:

Phone: 780-447-8616
Toll Free: 1-800-272-8876 ask for extension 8616
Office hours: 8:30 a.m. – 3:30 p.m.
Monday – Friday (except holidays)

Calgary Prize Payout Office
Deerfoot Atrium South
310, 6715 – 8 Street NE
Calgary, AB T2E 7H7

Phone: 403-663-8301
Office hours: 8:30 a.m. – 3:30 p.m.
Monday – Friday (except holidays)

$1,001 to $9,999.99

Prizes may be claimed:

    By mail, through WCLC:

Western Canada Lottery Corporation
Prize Payout
10th Floor, 125 Garry Street
Winnipeg, MB R3C 4J1

  • In person, through Alberta Prize Payout Offices:
  • Phone: 780-447-8616
    Toll Free: 1-800-272-8876 ask for extension 8616
    Office hours: 8:30 a.m. – 3:30 p.m.
    Monday – Friday (except holidays)

    Calgary Prize Payout Office
    Deerfoot Atrium South
    310, 6715 – 8 Street NE
    Calgary, AB T2E 7H7

    Phone: 403-663-8301
    Office hours: 8:30 a.m. – 3:30 p.m.
    Monday – Friday (except holidays)

    $10,000 and up

    Anything over $10,000 is considered a major claim. You must claim in person.

    All major claims require an appointment in advance. Please call 1-800-272-8876 and ask for extension 8616.

    How to check your ticket

    There are several ways to check your ticket.

    • Use the Ticket Checkers at your lottery retailer.
    • Sign up for the WCLC MVP Service and have DAILY GRAND, LOTTO MAX, WESTERN MAX, LOTTO 6/49 and WESTERN 649 winning numbers emailed to you.
    • Download the free WCLC Lottery Manager app and use the ticket checker feature.
    • Check the winning numbers printed and posted at retail centres.
    • Call the Winning Numbers Lines for the most recent numbers:
      • Edmonton 780-459-5100
      • Calgary 403-275-8101
    Learn about checking lottery tickets, how to claim your prize and Prize Payout locations. ]]>