How to Keep Playing Powerball and Mega Millions from Illinois

The Illinois Lottery has confirmed that it will not be able to sell tickets for Powerball and Mega Millions beyond the end of June, leaving players in the state unsure as to when they will next be able to take part. However, the good news is that there are still ways for Powerball and Mega Millions fans in Illinois to continue enjoying their favorite games.

Why is the Illinois Lottery Halting Sales?

According to the Illinois Lottery, sales will be suspended because ‘the groups that own and operate these two popular games will not permit Illinois to sell the games without funds available to pay prizes’. The issue stems from a budget crisis in the state, and it is unclear at this stage when the matter will be resolved. The Illinois Lottery will therefore halt Powerball ticket sales after the draw on June 28th, and Mega Millions sales will halt after June 30th.

Can You Still Play From Illinois?

Yes. There are two options for players. You can cross state lines and buy a ticket from outside of Illinois, although any prize you win must then be claimed in the same state where you purchased your ticket. Alternatively, you can use an online messenger service without even leaving the state.

How Does it Work?

  • Go to the Lotto Tickets page and choose either Powerball or Mega Millions. You will then be redirected to the lottery messenger service.
  • Decide how many lines you would like to play. You can then either select your own numbers or opt for a quick pick, while you can also play as part of an online syndicate if you wish.
  • Choose how many draws you would like to enter, check your order and confirm your payment. You will automatically receive a confirmation email.
  • Representatives from the messenger service will then buy your official Powerball or Mega Millions tickets on your behalf, from a retail store in another state.
  • A scanned copy of your tickets will then be uploaded to your account as proof of purchase.
  • You will be emailed if you win and any prize of up to $600 will be credited to your account. If you win a larger prize, you will be called personally to help you claim your winnings.

When Can You Play?

You can use the online messenger service at any time, although subscription requests need to be placed at least 24 hours before the first draw you want to play so that representatives of the messenger service have time to buy your tickets. Players in Illinois can therefore continue enjoying Powerball and Mega Millions after the end of June and try to win the same huge prizes, either by visiting retailers in other states or using the Lotto Tickets page to select numbers online.

Note: The Illinois State lottery resumed Powerball and Mega Millions ticket sales on July 6th 2017.


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