Mega Millions - Frequently Asked Questions
Do you need to know when Mega Millions is drawn, how the game works or how you claim prizes? Find the answers to the most frequently asked questions about Mega Millions here.
Once you're clear on how to play the game, choose your numbers for the next draw by visiting the Tickets page.
Mega Millions Draws
On which days do Mega Millions draws take place?Mega Millions draws take place every Tuesday and Friday
At what time do Mega Millions draws take place?Draws take place at 11pm Eastern Standard Time
Can I watch the draw live on TV?Mega Millions drawings take place in a studio in Atlanta, Georgia, and are supervised by the Georgia Lottery and independent auditors. The draw airs on major TV channels across the US
When do Mega Millions ticket sales close?The cut-off time for ticket sales varies from state to state, but is typically an hour or two hours before the draw takes place. Go to the State Numbers page to find out more about playing Mega Millions where you live
How much do Mega Millions tickets cost?A single Mega Millions play costs $2. Playing the Megaplier costs an additional $1
What is the Megaplier?On the night of each Mega Millions draw, a Megaplier number from 2 to 5 will also be drawn. Any non-jackpot prizes that participating players win will then be multiplied by this Megaplier number. The option to play the Megaplier is offered by all states that participate in the Mega Millions lottery, with the exception of California
What is Just the Jackpot?Players can opt to play Mega Millions just for the jackpot prize, foregoing the chance to win any other prizes. This costs $3 for two lines, as opposed to the usual $4
What is Quick Pick?If you don’t want to choose your own numbers, you can select the Quick Pick option to have your numbers selected randomly for you. There are separate Quick Picks for the main numbers and the Mega Ball
Can I buy tickets from outside the United States?You can only buy physical tickets from authorized retailers in participating states in the US, but you can choose numbers online from other countries. Find out more at the Lottery Tickets page
Can I buy tickets if my state doesn’t play Mega Millions?Yes, you can visit a participating state and play without being a resident. Alternatively, you can use an online lottery service to take part online without to having to cross state borders
How to Play and Win
How do you play Mega Millions?To play Mega Millions, you choose five numbers between 1 and 70, and a further Mega Ball number between 1 and 25. If you opt-in to play the Megaplier, you don’t need to do anything else, as this will be drawn on the night of the main draw, and is the same for all players
How do you win Mega Millions?You win prizes when the numbers you have chosen match those drawn in the Mega Millions lottery. The more numbers you match, the bigger the prize. You can win prizes for matching anything from just the Mega Ball, all the way up to matching all five numbers and the Mega Ball, which will land you the jackpot prize
What are the odds of winning any Mega Millions prize?The odds of winning any Mega Millions prize are 1 in 24
How do you increase your odds of winning?The odds of winning a prize are the same for every single line of Mega Millions numbers and the only way to increase your chances is to play more lines. One way to boost your chances without having to spend more on tickets would be to join a lottery pool or syndicate, although winnings would then also have to be shared between members of the group
Mega Millions Jackpot
How do you know if you have won a prize?You can look at the Mega Millions Winning Numbers page to see all the latest results. If your numbers are a match, then you are a winner
How long do you have to claim a prize?The claim period depends on where you bought your Mega Millions ticket, and varies from 90 days in some states to a year in others. Go to the State Numbers page to see how long you have to claim a prize
Where do you claim your Mega Millions prize?How you claim your Mega Millions prize depends on how much money you have won. Mega Millions prizes of up to $600 can generally be claimed from any authorized lottery retailer in the same state where you bought your ticket. For larger amounts, you will need to visit a regional claims center or the state’s lottery headquarters
I’ve been contacted about a prize, is it real?You can only win a Mega Millions prize if you have entered the draw. Legitimate lotteries do not contact people out of the blue via email and do not charge fees before money can be transferred. Look at the Lottery Scams page for more information
How do I claim a prize if I played online?If you played Mega Millions online, you will be automatically notified of any win and most prizes will be paid directly into your account. For larger amounts, you will be guided through the process so you can claim the prize in person.
Can I claim my prize in another state?You must claim your Mega Millions prize in the state where you bought your ticket
Should I take cash or annuity payments?Jackpot winners can choose to either accept an annuity payout, where they receive the full advertised amount in 30 annual instalments, or a one-off cash sum. The cash option is lower because it represents the amount of money available in the jackpot fund at the time of the draw, whereas the advertised jackpot value shows how much it would be worth with 29 years of interest
State Specific Rules
Which states tax Mega Millions winnings?Large Mega Millions prizes such as the jackpot are all subject to federal tax obligations, but the overall levy depends on where you bought your ticket. Wyoming, Washington, Texas, South Dakota, and Florida don't levy income taxes on their residents, while Tennessee and New Hampshire only impose tax on income from dividends and interest
Can you stay anonymous if you win?You can play Mega Millions anonymously in Delaware, Kansas, Maryland, North Dakota, Ohio and South Carolina. All other states will announce the identity of a jackpot winner and hold a press conference, although it may be possible to claim the prize through a trust fund
How old do you have to be to play Mega Millions?Players in Arizona, Iowa and Louisiana have to be 21 years old to buy Mega Millions tickets. The minimum age in Nebraska is 19, while in all other states it is 18
Which states do not play Mega Millions?You cannot play the Mega Millions lottery in Alabama, Alaska, Hawaii, Mississippi, Nevada, and Utah
If you have any further questions that are not answered here, please get in touch and we’ll be happy to help.