The Internet has blessed consumers all over the world with the power of extreme convenience. Nowadays, you can purchase goods and services without ever leaving your home! Even the lottery scene has undergone a major overhaul, which means you no longer need to deal with long lines at your local lottery agent. You can now play international lotteries online from most countries in the world, and we’re here to show you how to do it safely and efficiently. Read on to find out how we review and rank the top legitimate lottery sites in the world.
Official Lotteries Go Online
Before, people have to tune in to the draw on TV or read about the results on the newspaper. Now, all you need to do is access the official website of your chosen lottery to stay updated. Major lottery organizations like the US Powerball, Mega Millions, EuroMillions, SuperEnalotto and more can now be found online. You may even purchase tickets to these official lotteries through their website or other authorized sellers. You don’t even need to sit in front of a computer to monitor your tickets; you can access these sites from your mobile phone so you’re updated no matter where you go!
Buying Official Lottery Tickets Online
If you want to buy cheap lottery tickets, the first place to look is the website of the lottery itself.
This is a good option for people who live in the jurisdiction where the lottery is held. For example, US Citizens can purchase the Powerball and MegaMillions lottery tickets through the official websites.
However, how about people who don’t live in said jurisdiction. For example, how can someone from Australia participate in the US Powerball?
Today, we also have online lottery services that cater to people who want to take part in lotteries not available in their jurisdiction. You need to go to their website, pick the lottery you want, choose your numbers, and pay for your tickets.
Once that’s done, a local representative will purchase the tickets on your behalf. You will be sent a copy of your ticket to prove that the purchase was made. Now all that’s left to do is wait for the draw to see if you’ve won!
Participating in official lotteries outside your jurisdiction is still a difficult matter. Even if the lottery website is legitimate, some lottery organizations like the Powerball still reserve the right to refuse winners who are outside their jurisdiction.
Another way to participate in lotteries online is to bet on their outcome instead of actually taking part in official draws. Online lottery betting websites allow users to predict the outcome of official draws and if their numbers coincide with the winners of the actual draw, they get to take home the same cash value as the actual winners of the lottery.
Lottery betting online is quite controversial, as some people see it as a “fake” lottery. While there are some lottery scams here and there, reputable sites like Lottoland do give players the same experience as if it’s an actual draw. The odds are the same, the jackpot is the same, and the company is insured in the event of a grand prize winner. Some people actually prefer lottery betting websites compared to actual lottery draws because as mentioned above, some official draws are strict about players outside their jurisdiction. Since you’re dealing with the lottery betting company itself, not the actual lottery organization, you are not limited by jurisdictional issues.
Rules for Playing Online Lottery
Following the rules when playing lotteries online is very important, as any violation of terms and conditions could result in you not getting your earnings and your account being terminated. While some websites have rules specific to them, here are some of the general ones that all websites follow:
- You must be 18 years old or higher, unless you live in jurisdictions where the legal age for gambling is 21 (e.g. Estonia).
- You must ensure that participating in online lotteries is not illegal in your jurisdiction.
- Your jurisdiction must not be in the designated lottery’s list of prohibited jurisdictions.
- You must not be blacklisted by relevant financial organizations.
- Each person must only have one account. Lottery websites prohibit the use of duplicate accounts and account sharing.
- All information given during sign-up should be accurate and true. Winners have to undergo an identity verification check and if the company finds out that the information you provided during sign up was fraudulent, your winnings will be considered null and void.
- For security purposes, employees cannot participate in lottery activities of their own website. For example, employees of theLotter may participate in other lotteries, just not lotteries held by theLotter.
How to Play Lottery Online
To play using any lotto websites, you first need to register an account. Most websites have links to their signup or register pages clearly visible, so it shouldn’t take long for you to find it. Remember to only provide information that is true and accurate. Once you have successfully submitted your data, you will receive a confirmation email asking you to verify your account.
Once your account is verified, you need to add funds to it so you can start purchasing lottery tickets. All that’s left for you to do after that is to choose your preferred lottery, pick your numbers and pay for your tickets. If your ticket wins, the website will send you an email or a phone call notifying you of a win. However, in cases where a system malfunction prevents them from contacting you, they are not liable for any missed wins. It is still your responsibility as the user to check if your ticket has won.
Procedures on how to claim prizes vary from website to website, so it’s imperative to read their terms and conditions first to see if you’re amenable to their methods before signing up.
Big Online Lottery Winners
Jenn Burston has always bought tickets to the EuroMillions online and on December 17, 2014, what was initially a £3,000 minor prize win turned into a whooping £3 million. On that draw, the jackpot prize was already capped, so when nobody won the grand prize, the money rolled over to secondary prize winners, giving Jenn and her husband an early Christmas present. Because they played the EuroMillions online they were able to see how much they won straight away.
Bill Laharty from Nanaimo BC is a regular user of PlayNow.com, a legit online lotto website. In August 13, 2016, his efforts finally paid off as he became the largest lottery winner in Canada after netting the $21 million jackpot of the Lotto 6/49. Laharty used his winnings not only to purchase himself a condo and a car, but to help out his family and friends.
theLotter’s biggest win ever was an Iraqi man with the initials M.M. He bought lotto tickets for the Oregon Megabucks through theLotter for the August 24, 2015 draw. Days later, he received an email stating that he won the $6.4 Million jackpot prize. theLotter helped M.M. travel to the US so he could claim his prize personally.
WinTrillions, another lotto website, has had 191,835 winners to date. One of its most notable winners is Katie from Lancaster. Katie, who is a US citizen, missed playing lotteries from back home so she used WinTrillions.com to purchase tickets to the Mega Millions’s March 25, 2011 draw. Although she did not win the jackpot, she did take home the 2nd prize of $250,000 for matching 5 numbers.
Lottoland, a popular betting website, has had several lottery jackpot winners of its own. Its largest winner to date is Mathias from Germany who took home the €22 Million jackpot prize from the 6aus49 last April 30, 2016. According to Mathias, he uses the website because it allows him to bet on lotteries in a simple and easy manner.
So is it possible to play different lotteries online? Definitely. However, not all online lottery services are the same. While most lottery platforms on the Internet are extremely safe and legitimate, there are still scam lottery websites out there. Before signing up for an account, do your research first and make sure you know what to look for in lottery messenger and betting sites. Check testimonials, reviews, and news stories to ensure that you’re giving your patronage, and your hard earned money, to the real deal.
FAQ - frequently asked questions
To a certain extent, this is a somewhat subjective question because different people have different preferences. That being said, some sites definitely stand out from others in terms of their overall reputation, number of years in the business, customer service, how many (and which) lotteries they offer to players, extra features such as scratch cards and instant-win games, etc. While there are no “perfect” lotto sites, there are a few that come close. For details on the ones that we have analyzed and determined to be the best of the best, see our ranking.
What constitutes the “best” lottery will mean different things to different people. Some people only care about playing for a chance to win the biggest lottery jackpots ever, while others are perfectly happy winning much more modest prizes. That being said, there are a few things you should consider when deciding which lottery to try your luck on. In addition to the value of the prizes, you should check what the odds of winning are, how often draws take place, how long the lottery has been around for and how often people have won, whether you are eligible to play based on your age or geographic location, and whether you could remain anonymous if you are lucky enough to win a jackpot.
Although lottery agents and betting sites both usually allow people to play lotteries from all over the world, there is an important difference between. Lottery agents purchase physical tickets on your behalf, meaning that they actually buy an official lottery ticket into a real lottery, such as the US Powerball or the EuroJackpot, and keep it safe for you until the draw takes place. Many sites also scan your lottery ticket so that you can see it in your user account. Any prize money you win through a lottery agent website will come from the official lottery itself.
In contrast, betting sites allow you to bet on the outcome of a lottery draw. If the numbers you chose match the numbers that are drawn, then you’ll win a prize that is usually the same as what you’d win from the official lottery itself—including big jackpots. Any prize money you win from a lottery betting website will come from the company that runs the site (or their insurer in the case of big jackpot wins).
Determining a site’s validity involves looking at various factors of the site and business in question, including the following:
- the number of years the company has been operating for
- the reputation the site has online
- the availability, responsiveness, and knowledgeability of its customer support team
- whether or not it has a gaming license and which gambling commission issued the license (this is only important with betting sites, since they operate in a similar fashion to online casinos and sportsbook sites)
- the feedback that present and past customers gave the site
- what its policies are regarding transactions and payouts on winnings
Of course, just because a site does not meet ALL of these criteria doesn’t mean that it’s not trustworthy. However, if it falls short in one or two areas, it should definitely more than make up for it in the other areas.
A lottery syndicate, also often called “group play,” refers to a feature that most of the best lottery websites offer to their customers. Syndicates allow multiple lottery players to pool their tickets together to increase their odds of winning. As an example, 10 people might collectively buy tickets to one draw; as a whole, these 10 people comprise one syndicate. If one person’s numbers turn out to be the winning numbers, the entire group splits the winnings based on how many tickets (or “shares”) each person contributed to the syndicate. Even if someone else’s numbers won but you had contributed 25% of the total amount of tickets, you would be entitled to 25% of the total winnings. Imagine how much your odds of winning would improve in a syndicate of 50 people who each bought 10 tickets to a draw!
Many sites nowadays offer lottery subscriptions, which means that you can sign up to be automatically entered into several consecutive draws, ranging from a few weeks to several months. If you’re a regular lottery player who always plays the same numbers or chooses the quick-pick option, this is a great way to play because you can pay once in advance and not have to think about it again until your subscription expires. This approach can save you a lot of time and a lot of hassle related to remembering to buy tickets for every draw. In addition, some sites offer discounts on subscriptions, so the longer you sign up for, the more you can save.
This depends on whether you won playing through a lottery agent or a lotto betting site. With lottery agents, they’ll claim the money for you and credit your account for any lower-tier prizes that you win. If you win a large prize, such as a jackpot, they’ll contact you to discuss how you can claim your money, which might require you to travel to the country in which the lottery is held and claim the money in person yourself.
Lotto betting sites, meanwhile, pay out lower-tier winnings from the money that they make from providing their services. For higher-tier winnings, they usually buy insurance (essentially betting on you not winning) to cover a win situation so that they don't have to cover the cost out of their own pockets.
That being said, nowadays it's becoming more and more common for lottery sites to take a hybrid approach that combines the lottery betting AND lottery agent models. How this works is that they'll use the insurer model for smaller jackpots, but for REALLY big jackpots they'll just go out and buy physical tickets for customers since that would be cheaper than buying insurance.
- Although there are a few rogue sites out there that should be avoided (see our lottery site reviews for details on which those are), the top sites are owned and operated by reputable and respectable businesses that have been around for many years. These sites care about their reputations, offer watertight terms and conditions, provide excellent customer service, and aim to be in this industry for many years into the future. As such, there is no reason not to trust them.
- You bet it is! Although only 13 of India's states still permit their residents to play the country's own state-run lotteries, there are no rules or regulations preventing the country's citizens from playing international lotteries. This means that if you'd like to legally play games like US Powerball, Mega Millions, or EuroJackpot from India, you can definitely do so! Read our lottery site reviews to see which sites offer the best games and value.
- The vast majority of online lottery games are national or state-run lotteries that follow stringent rules and are completely transparent in how they operate. As a result, it would be extremely difficult for them to be rigged since there are various checks in place to prevent that from happening. As for lottery games that are independently run by lottery betting sites, the companies that operate them are also strictly regulated by the gambling commissions and authorities that license them. As a result, they would lose their licenses and reputations immediately if it was revealed that any of their games or operations were rigged.