Mega Millions Cutoff Time: How Late Can You Buy Lottery Tickets Before Friday’s $1 Billion Drawing?
With a little, or a lot, of luck, someone will be crowned the big winner of the Mega Millions lottery and the $1 billion jackpot. As the drawing nears, it’s natural for people to rush to buy tickets, but there is a cutoff time for people taking their shot at becoming wealthy beyond their imagination.
In many states, eligible tickets are sold until 15 minutes before the drawing takes place. The drawing for Mega Millions will occur at 11 p.m. EDT on Friday, so, if you live in an eligible state on the East Coast, you have to purchase your ticket by 10:45 p.m EDT. If you’re in Central Time Zone, that means 9:45 p.m. CDT. The West Coast should have their tickets in hand by 7:45 p.m PDT.
However, there are exceptions to this time limit, so it’s best to check the rules in your own state. For example, in Maine, New Hampshire, Vermont, the cutoff is 9:50 p.m. EDT on the day of the drawing.
After a series of drawings during which no one hit big, the Mega Millions reached a whopping $1 billion with a cash option of $565 million on Friday. The massive prize is the second-largest pot of cash in United States lottery history.
To take a shot at winning the life-changing prize money, a person over the age of 18 needs to purchase a ticket for two dollars with the option to guess the Megaplier for an extra dollar. Tickets are sold at a variety of establishments, including convenience stores, gas stations and newspaper stands.
There are two ways a person can select their numbers, either by choosing specific numbers or through random selection. If there is a set of lucky numbers the person wants to play, they select five different numbers ranging from one to 70 and one number ranging from one to 25. If the person wants to leave it up to the computer to decide their fate, they can select the Easy Pick/Quick Pick option and have numbers generated for them.
There are nine ways a person can win the Mega Million lottery, ranging from the top prize down to the cost of their ticket:
- 5 numbers + gold Mega Ball match = Jackpot
- 5 numbers + no gold Mega Ball match = $1,000,000
- 4 numbers + gold Mega Ball match = $10,000
- 4 numbers + no gold Mega Ball match = $500
- 3 numbers + gold Mega Ball match = $200
- 3 numbers + no gold Mega Ball match = $10
- 2 numbers + gold ball match = $10
- 1 number + gold ball match = $4
- 0 numbers + gold ball match = $2
Winners have two choices for claiming their prize, either in an immediate payment followed by 29 subsequent payments, or in one lump sum of cash.
While not as high as the Mega Millions prize, also on the line this weekend is the $470 million prize attached to the Power Ball. The drawing for the Power Ball will take place on Saturday evening.The $1 billion drawing has a cash payout option of more than $500 million.
The Powerball Jackpot Just Hit $750 Million. Here’s the Deadline to Buy Tickets Tonight in Every State
The Powerball jackpot is now up to a whopping $750 million, and the next drawing is tonight. It’s the biggest lottery jackpot of 2019 so far, and if someone has all of the Powerball winning numbers it would represent the fourth-highest lottery jackpot of all time in the U.S.
Bear in mind that the odds of winning Powerball are unlikely, to put it mildly. To win the Powerball jackpot, you must have all five white numbers (between 1 and 69) and the red Powerball number (between 1 and 26) correct. The odds of having all of the winning Powerball numbers on your ticket are 1 in 292 million.
Still, there are many other ways to win a Powerball prize of some sort. You’ll win $1 million if you have all five winning white balls but not the red Powerball, for example, and you’d win $50,000 by getting four white balls and the Powerball correct.
Most importantly, you can’t win Powerball if you don’t buy a ticket in time for the latest drawing. Each Powerball ticket costs $2, and the deadline to buy Powerball tickets varies by state. Here’s all the information you need for a chance to win the $750 million jackpot in the Powerball drawing tonight, Wednesday, March 27.
When Are the Powerball Winning Numbers Drawn?
Powerball drawings are every Wednesday and Saturday at 10:59 p.m. ET. Some local nightly news programs show Powerball drawings live, while other stations around the country announce Powerball winning numbers at a little after 11 p.m. ET.
You can also find out about the winning Powerball numbers online at sites such as powerball.com and lottery.net.
The next Powerball drawing is tonight (Wednesday, March 27), when a jackpot estimated at $750 million is up for grabs. The lump sum cash value of today’s $750 million jackpot is $465.5 million, before taxes. (And yes, if you are lucky enough to win the Powerball jackpot, our advice is to take the lump sum rather than annual payments.)
What Is the Deadline to Buy Powerball Tickets?
Powerball tickets are sold in 44 states, plus Washington, D.C., Puerto Rico, and the U.S. Virgin Islands. The deadline to buy Powerball tickets varies by location. So we checked the state lottery websites around the country for their Powerball cutoff times, and all of the deadlines are listed below.
Powerball jackpots roll over and get bigger and bigger if no one has all of the winning numbers in drawings. And as lottery jackpots grow, so does the likelihood for long lines to buy tickets. So it’s best to buy Powerball tickets well before the deadline arrives in your state. Also, take note that many states offer online lottery ticket sales.The Powerball jackpot is $750 million currently. Here's the deadline to buy Powerball tickets, even with tough odds of winning Powerball. ]]>