The Powerball lottery originated in the USA in 1992 and is played by punters around the globe. The ticket can be bought in the 45 American states, including the US Virgin Islands, Puerto Rico and the District of Columbia. Many online betting sites also conduct Powerball lottery draws.
The basic idea behind any lottery is the same, jackpot. The winnings from such draws depend on the odds offered by each lottery, which is 1 out of millions when it comes to Powerball.
From the time it was inaugurated till now, multiple adjustments have been made to the Powerball lottery. For instance, there were two draws every week initially. An additional draw, bringing the total draws to 3 every week, was added in August 2021.
The history of lotteries goes way back to the 15th century. One can find different types of lotteries originating from different parts of the world. Out of all of them, the Powerball lottery was the first to introduce two drum draws. With two drum draws, there are chances of higher jackpot odds and lower overall odds of winning.
How Does the Powerball Lottery Work?
To create a line on the lottery ticket in Powerball, a bettor has to select 5 numbers and one Powerball number. There are two sets of balls; white balls with numbers up to 69 and red balls with numbers up to 26. The 5 numbers are chosen from the set of white 69 balls and one number from the set of 26 balls, which is also known as the “Powerball Number”.
There are two separate drums, one for white balls and one for red balls, from which winning draws are picked. Some more details are given below about the Powerball lottery to understand it more precisely.
The Powerball lottery also offers a Powerplay option in which players get a chance to multiply the non-jackpot prizes up to 10x. For Powerplay, players have to pay an extra amount, which is generally $1. With this option, the non-jackpot prizes can be multiplied by 2, 3, 4, 5 or 10.
Since its launch and until August 2021, there were two weekly draws, on Wednesdays and Saturdays. The weekly draws were increased to 3 on 23 August 2021, after adding another draw on Mondays. Each draw happens at 10:59 p.m (ET).
The Powerball lottery sale cut-off time is 10:00 p.m (ET) in the majority of states. This means players must bet on the numbers before the cut-off time to enter the draw. This is the standard cut-off time. However, some states cut off sales earlier.
Generally, the minimum cost for one line (5+1 numbers) is $2. This cost can go up to $5, depending on which state or online platform you buy it. The Powerplay option costs an additional $1 per game. This can go as high as $2.5.
Following are some of the rules that each player must know before entering the draw.
- The red Powerball number does not necessarily have to be different from the white numbers. It can also be a similar number.
- If you are choosing a different Powerball number than white numbers, you cannot use the drawn white number as a Powerball number or a drawn Powerball number as a white number, to win the draw.
- The chosen numbers are always reflected in ascending order on your ticket, no matter in which sequence you select them.
- Players can either choose the numbers manually or use the random selector to pick random numbers for their tickets.
- Though the standard time of sale cut-off for the tickets is 59 minutes before the draw, many selling platforms have earlier cut-off times. Players are suggested to be aware of these timings.
There are 8 different prize levels and one jackpot. These prizes are distributed at different tiers of draws. For example, if only your Powerball number matches, or one of your white numbers and Powerball number matches, with the drawn numbers, then the prize is around $4.
If 2 white numbers and the Powerball number, or 3 white numbers match the draw, then you can win $7. These winnings can multiply if you are using the Powerplay option. To win the jackpot, your ticket must match all the drawn numbers, that is, 5 white numbers and the Powerball number.