In Which States Can You Buy Lottery Tickets Online?

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Lottery Tickets

Winning the lottery and bringing home millions of dollars is a lifelong dream for many Americans. Who can blame them? After all, it doesn’t sound like a bad alternative to the soul-crushing 9-to-5 routine many of us have had to succumb to in order to make ends meet. Even the horrific stories of tragedies that have struck past winners can’t deter hundreds of thousands of people from trying their luck every single day.

With the rise of the Internet as the predominant force in our daily lives, it was only a matter of time until someone came up with the idea to let people buy lottery tickets online. Although it seems like an innocent enough procedure at first, accessing your favorite games via the Internet is associated with significant risk. This is why most states don’t allow for the purchase of online tickets.

Lotteries in Virginia, New York, California, and many other states are restricted to in-person ticket sales only. While it may discourage some people from trying out these games at all, these prohibitions haven’t been put in place without a good reason.

Keep reading to see if your state allows online sales of lottery tickets, the risks associated with this practice, and how to protect yourself from scammers.


Where Can You Buy Lottery Tickets Online?

As of 2019, these are the states in which you can legally obtain a lottery ticket via the internet:

  • Illinois
  • Georgia
  • Kentucky
  • New Hampshire
  • North Dakota
  • North Carolina
  • Pennsylvania
  • Michigan

Keep in mind, however, that just because it’s legal, it doesn’t mean that you can certainly play your favorite lottery in any given state. Aside from the state legislature, other limitations may be implemented by the lottery providers themselves. For example, Mega Millions and Powerball, two of the most popular lottery games in the country, only enable the sale of individual tickets through their official websites in Georgia and Illinois. It doesn’t mean that you won’t be able to obtain them online through other means, but don’t be surprised if your numbers don’t ever strike the jackpot.


Play Safe!

You can find countless lottery tickets vendors on the internet, but not all of them are going to be 100% honest with you. They know how to market themselves so that you think that your best chance of winning a couple of million dollars is when you buy tickets from them, all the while knowingly selling you losing slips.

If you live in one of the states that allow for the sale of these tickets online, make sure that you familiarize yourself with the most recent information regarding safe, honest internet vendors ahead of the draw. The possibility of a win is very small in and of itself — you don’t want to minimize it further by buying your tickets from uncertain sources.

Don’t let your judgment be clouded by the desire to hit the jackpot. To keep your bank account secure, research each and every option thoroughly. Third parties can sell Mega Millions or Powerball tickets, but beware of those claiming that they’re subsidiaries of these lotteries  — there is no such thing. The only “authorized” ticket sales points on the Internet are their providers themselves.


Alternatives for Individual Tickets

Oftentimes, online purchases of tickets for lotteries result in false slips with no standing chance of a jackpot win when the draw happens. If for whatever reason, you’re bent on buying a ticket through the Internet, you should do so via official means, preferably directly from the lottery provider. Since they only allow this practice in two of the fifty American states, you can use a VPN to change your IP address. This is a much better option than buying from a third party, even if it’s legally allowed where you live. Remember — the best con artists don’t ever break the law!

When using a VPN, you should also keep in mind that most major lotteries require you to be a resident of a certain state in order to buy the slip, so it’s not an option for every single draw out there.

An even better option to play online and stand a chance of winning the jackpot is an online lottery subscription. They are available even in places that don’t allow for the purchase of individual tickets. Subscribing to a lottery is very similar to subscribing to a streaming service like Netflix or Hulu. All you’ve got to do is input your payment information and open up an online account with the provider. After picking the winning numbers, the subscription will handle each ticket for you ahead of every draw. You’ll also be notified in case of a win, so you won’t even need to check the results!


Bottom Line

The United States has a long and proud history of lotteries and famous jackpot winners. Even some of the less popular contests draw the attention of thousands of people. After all, who doesn’t want to win a million dollars?

There is no denying that they’re incredibly fun and addictive, but these exact qualities also make lottery players the perfect targets for scammers and cheats of all sorts. Remember not to give up your account details to third party sellers right away. Always research them thoroughly, and if there is another option to participate in the contest, you should seriously reconsider your choice.


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