How Old Do You Have to Be to Buy a Lottery Ticket?
Playing the lottery is a fun pastime that can lead to winning some life-changing amounts of money. While it is a harmless hobby for many, it is still a form of gambling and is therefore subject to some age restrictions for participations. However, each country has its own regulations when it comes to how old you have to be to buy a lottery ticket. In this article, we’re going to discuss the different age limits for some of the most popular lottery games in the world.
US Powerball is one of the most popular lottery games in the world. It currently holds the record for the world’s largest jackpot ever awarded at US$1.58 billion, won in January 2016. It is a national lottery that is available in 45 states, as well as the District of Columbia, Puerto Rico, and the U.S. Virgin Islands.
Players must be at least 18 years old to buy a Powerball ticket in the U.S., though there are some exceptions. In Nebraska, players must be 19, while in Arizona, Iowa, Louisiana, and Mississippi, players must be at least 21 years old to purchase tickets for Powerball or any other lotto game.
Mega Millions is another American national lottery that is popular all over the world. It often competes with US Powerball for the largest jackpots in the world, and currently holds the record for the second-largest win at US$1.53 billion, won in October 2018. It is also available in 45 states, as well as the District of Columbia, Puerto Rico, and the U.S. Virgin Islands, and has the same age restrictions. This means that the minimum age to purchase tickets is 18, except in Nebraska (19), Arizona (21), Iowa (21), Louisiana (21), and Mississippi (21).
EuroMillions is a transnational lottery that is one Europe’s most popular games. It is available in the United Kingdom, France, Spain, Austria, Andorra, Belgium, Ireland, the Isle of Man, Luxembourg, Liechtenstein, Monaco, Portugal, and Switzerland, and has paid out the previous $190 million maximum jackpot—which was increased to €200 million in February 2000—four times in its history. The minimum age to purchase EuroMillions tickets in participating countries is 18, except in the UK and Austria, where it is 16.
Eurojackpot is another popular European transnational lottery game that regularly awards huge jackpots, with a cap of €90 million. It is available to players in Croatia, Czech Republic, Denmark, Estonia, Finland, Germany, Hungary, Iceland, Italy, Latvia, Lithuania, the Netherlands, Norway, Slovakia, Slovenia, Spain, Sweden, and Poland. The legal age for purchasing Eurojackpot tickets in participating countries is 18, except in Estonia where it is 16.
SuperEnalotto is an Italian lottery that is popular with players all over the world. The largest jackpot ever won in the game’s history is €177.7 million, which was won on October 30, 2010. Players must be at least 18 years old to legally purchase a ticket for SuperEnalotto.
UK Lotto is a popular national game with good odds (1 in 45,057,474) compared to its primary competitor, EuroMillions (1 in 139,838,160). It is available to players in the United Kingdom and the Isle of Man. Players must be 16 years and older to buy a ticket.
Canada Lotto Max
Canada Lotto Max is a national lottery game available in all provinces and territories in Canada that has jackpot odds of 1 in 33,294,800. It is one of the country’s most popular games, and has a jackpot cap of CA$70 million, which has been awarded multiple times since the increase in January 2020. Players must be at least 18 years old to purchase Canada Lotto Max tickets, except in British Columbia, where they must be 19 years or older.
Canada Lotto 6/49
Canada Lotto 6/49 is arguably the best lottery game in Canada—but only when its jackpots climb to record levels—due to the much better odds it offers (1 in 13,983,816) compared to Lotto Max. The biggest jackpot ever won, back in October 2015, was $64 million. Being a national lottery offered from coast to coast across the country, it has the same age restrictions as Lotto Max: 18 in all provinces except for British Columbia, where the minimum age to play is 19.
Brazil Mega Sena
Mega Sena is Brazil’s largest national lottery and has been around since March 1996. The biggest jackpot ever awarded was R$289.4 million, which was won in May 2019. The game is operated by the Caixa Econômica Federal bank and the minimum age requirement to purchase Brazil Mega Sena tickets is 18 years old.
Oz Lotto is a national lottery game available in Australia. It is available all across the country, though it is administered by two different brands: Lotterywest in Western Australia, and the Lott in all remaining states. The biggest jackpot in the game’s history is AU$111.9 million, won in November 2012. Players must be at least 18 years old to purchase Oz Lotto tickets, except in Western Australia, where the minimum age requirement is 16.
While some lottery formats are universal, lottery regulations often vary not only by country, but by state or province within each country. However, it does appear that 18 years old is typically the minimum legal age for buying a lottery ticket for most games and in most regions—though there are some exceptions.
Although the majority of the youngest lottery winners will tell you they were definitely old enough to win at the ages they did, there are also some exceptions here too. Of course, whether someone is responsible enough to spend their money wisely doesn't necessarily depend on their age, as there have been plenty of older winners who blew all of their winnings.
What do you think is the optimal age for winning? Is 16 or even 18 too young? Email us and let us know!