Powerball is one of the most popular lottery games in the United States, with drawings held twice a week on Wednesdays and Saturdays. This leads many people to wonder – can you play Powerball any day of the week, or only on draw days? The quick answer is yes, Powerball tickets can be purchased on any day, not just on Wednesdays and Saturdays when the drawings are held. Here are some key facts about playing Powerball:
Powerball tickets can be purchased every day at authorized lottery retailers. This includes convenience stores, gas stations, grocery stores and anywhere else lottery tickets are sold. The sales cutoff time for Powerball tickets varies by state, generally 1-2 hours before the drawing on Wednesday and Saturday evenings. But tickets can be bought any other time, whether it’s first thing in the morning, middle of the workday or late at night. You don’t have to wait for draw days to play.
When buying a Powerball ticket, players can choose to have the lottery terminal randomly select the numbers or pick their own. Number selection can be done on any day too. Some players have favorite numbers they always play or use special techniques like picking significant dates. Others like to get tickets with random quick picks whenever the mood strikes. Players can do a mixture as well, choosing some numbers and letting the computer pick the rest.
Buying Tickets in Advance
Not only can players purchase Powerball tickets whenever, they can also buy them in advance. Some players like to buy tickets for future drawings ahead of time so they don’t forget or have to make a separate trip on draw days. Powerball tickets can be purchased in advance for up to 10 consecutive drawings, whether it’s a week, a month or any timeframe. Tickets purchased in advance will automatically be entered into the appropriate drawings.
In some states, Powerball players can use subscription plans to have tickets automatically purchased and entered into drawings. Options vary by state but generally players can set up subscriptions for 3, 6 or 12 months. Their personalized number selections will be used for every drawing during the subscription period. Subscriptions can be set up on any date as well, not just Wednesday or Saturday.
In states that allow online lottery sales, Powerball tickets can be purchased over the internet as well. Online sales are available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, so players don’t have to visit retailers during normal business hours. Tickets can be bought online early in the morning, late at night, holidays and any other time. Purchases just need to be made before sales cutoff times for the next drawing.
Official Game Rules
While the convenience of playing Powerball any day is appealing, there are some official rules that govern play:
Powerball drawings are still only held twice weekly, on Wednesdays and Saturdays at 10:59 p.m. Eastern Time. Tickets purchased on other days will be entered into the next available drawing after purchase. For example, a ticket bought on Thursday can’t be entered into Wednesday’s drawing but will automatically be entered into Saturday’s instead. Drawings can’t occur more frequently than the scheduled days.
Sales Cutoff Times
As mentioned previously, sales cutoffs for Powerball tickets vary by one to two hours before drawings on Wednesday and Saturday evenings. Check with your local lottery for exact times. Any tickets purchased after the cutoff won’t be included in that night’s drawing but the next one. Tickets can still be sold after the cutoff as long as they are entered into a future drawing.
When buying Powerball tickets in advance or with a subscription plan, players should be aware that this only applies to standard drawings. If a special drawing is held, like a holiday drawing, tickets would need to be bought separately for that. It’s always a good idea to check with your lottery to see if any changes in the normal schedule are planned during the span of your advance or subscription purchase.
For any winning Powerball tickets, prizes need to be claimed within the required time limit, which varies based on where the ticket was purchased. That time limit will still apply to tickets purchased on days other than the scheduled drawings. For example, if a Powerball ticket purchased on Tuesday happens to win on Saturday night’s drawing, the normal claim deadline will apply. Prizes won’t be valid forever just because the ticket wasn’t bought the same week as the drawing.
Frequency of Powerball Drawings
Powerball holds two drawings per week, on Wednesdays and Saturdays at 10:59 p.m. Eastern Time. Here is an overview of the drawing schedule:
– Held every Wednesday evening at 10:59 p.m. Eastern
– Can be played on any day, not just Wednesdays
– Sales cutoff times vary by one to two hours before drawing
– Winning numbers available shortly after 11 p.m. Eastern
– Held every Saturday evening at 10:59 p.m. Eastern
– Can be played on any day, not just Saturdays
– Sales cutoff times vary by one to two hours before drawing
– Winning numbers available shortly after 11 p.m. Eastern
Drawings are held on major holidays as well, except for Christmas Day. Here is the schedule for 2023 holiday drawings:
|Holiday||Drawing Date||Day of Week|
|Martin Luther King Jr. Day||January 16||Monday|
|Valentine’s Day||February 14||Tuesday|
|Memorial Day||May 29||Monday|
|Independence Day||July 4||Tuesday|
|Labor Day||September 4||Monday|
As shown, the drawings shift to Mondays and Thursdays when holidays fall on Wednesday or Saturday. Tickets can still be purchased every day as usual for these drawings.
Buying a Ticket
Playing Powerball other days beside draw days is convenient, but how do you actually buy a ticket? Here are the options:
At a Lottery Retailer
The most common way to purchase Powerball tickets is at local retailers that sell lottery games, such as convenience stores, gas stations, supermarkets, liquor stores, tobacco shops and more. Simply visit any retailer during business hours, select your numbers manually or by quick pick, and pay for your ticket. Retailers can be found almost everywhere.
In some states, Powerball tickets can be purchased online through the state lottery website or approved third-party websites. Buying online allows you to play anytime without having to visit a retailer. Tickets can be bought through a computer, mobile device or tablet as long as internet access is available. Accounts need to be set up in advance with required information.
A few state lotteries offer mobile apps for purchasing Powerball tickets online. Apps provide convenience for iPhone and Android users who can buy from anywhere. Apps allow managing ticket purchases, checking results and scanning tickets to see if they’re winners. Check with your state lottery to see if a mobile app is available.
Subscriptions allow you to buy Powerball tickets for a set period of time, from a couple months to a year, instead of individual drawings. Your numbers are automatically entered into every drawing during the subscription. Subscriptions can be set up at lottery retailers or online through the state lottery depending on the location.
Ticket Vending Machines
Some grocery stores and retailers have self-service lottery ticket vending machines. After inserting money, players can select menu options to quickly purchase Powerball tickets. Ticket vending machines are fast and easy for buying tickets other than on draw days.
Why Play Powerball Any Day?
Purchasing Powerball tickets whenever you want provides a lot of flexibility and convenience. Here are some of the best reasons to play on days besides the standard drawings:
It’s More Convenient
Making a special trip to buy Powerball tickets on specific days can be inconvenient at times. Getting to a retailer before sales cutoff may not fit your schedule. Being able to buy tickets any day allows playing when it best fits your routine. Maybe you buy coffee on Thursdays and can get tickets then too. Or you grocery shop Sundays and can grab some then. Flexibility is the big perk.
Take Advantage of Impulse Buys
Seeing the ever-increasing Powerball jackpot can spark the impulse to play. If the jackpot rolls over a few times, the urge to try your luck hits. Being able to act on that impulse right away is satisfying. No waiting until Saturday required. Jackpot chasing is part of the fun.
Spread Out Purchases
Some players like to spread out ticket purchases over multiple days. Buying a few tickets daily or weekly means you don’t have to buy them all at once. This can be easier than buying 20 tickets on the same day. And spreading out purchases gives you more chances to play over a stretch of drawings.
Provides More Flexibility
Being able to buy whenever allows flexibility in which drawings you play. Maybe traveling plans mean you’ll miss the next Wednesday drawing. Not a problem – you can buy tickets for Saturday’s drawing before you leave. The same flexibility applies to number selection – play your favorite numbers some drawings and quick picks other times.
Take Part in Office Pools
Office Powerball pools are easier when you don’t have a narrow purchase window. If everyone throws in a few bucks on Monday for that Wednesday’s drawing, no one has to rush out after work to buy tickets. The flexibility makes it easier for groups to play together.
Buy Tickets as Gifts
Purchasing Powerball tickets as gifts is more convenient when you aren’t limited to certain days. Tickets can be bought well in advance for birthdays, holidays and other occasions. Quick pick tickets provide extra fun since the recipient can see if their gift numbers prove lucky.
While playing Powerball frequently is exciting, remember to always gamble responsibly. Here are tips for staying in control:
Set a Budget
Determine an affordable budget for playing lottery games over a set timeframe, such as weekly or monthly. Don’t exceed your limit just because tickets are available every day. Stick to what you can comfortably afford.
Don’t Chase Losses
Trying to win back losses by buying more tickets rarely works and usually digs the hole deeper. Accept losses as part of the game. Chasing losses leads to reckless decisions trying to break even.
Don’t Borrow to Play
Borrowing money from any source to buy lottery tickets is risky. Debt can quickly snowball if you don’t win. Never use credit cards, payday loans or other financing to fund lottery purchases.
Take Frequent Breaks
Sitting out some drawings periodically can help break unlucky streaks. Taking a breather also reinforces that Powerball is for entertainment, not a way to constantly get rich quick.
Don’t Let It Become an Obsession
While playing often increases your chances, becoming obsessed with winning is unhealthy. Don’t let Powerball dominate your thoughts or negatively impact aspects of your life. Moderation and balance are key.
Have Other Interests
To maintain perspective, have hobbies and interests besides playing Powerball. Find other fulfilling ways to spend your time and satisfy your need for excitement. Variety prevents Powerball from becoming too big of a focus.
Odds of Winning
Playing Powerball frequently improves your odds of winning a prize, although the jackpot odds are still incredibly small. Statistically, here is the likelihood of hitting various prize tiers, based on the game’s format:
– Chances of winning any prize: 1 in 24.9
– Chances of winning jackpot: 1 in 292,201,338
– Chances of winning $1 million (match 5 + 0): 1 in 11,688,053
– Chances of winning $50,000 (match 4 + 1): 1 in 913,129
– Chances of winning $100 (match 3 + 1): 1 in 701
As shown, the jackpot is by far the hardest prize to win. But the odds are more favorable for lower tiers. Playing regularly boosts your chances of hitting one of those smaller prizes. Just don’t expect frequent play to guarantee you’ll win big!
Recent Jackpot Winners
Here is a summary of recent major jackpot wins in Powerball over the past couple years. This table shows that big jackpots can strike any time, whether tickets are purchased on draw days or not:
|Drawing Date||Winner||Jackpot||Ticket Purchased|
|October 4, 2022||California||$700 million||Day before drawing|
|February 14, 2022||Connecticut||$185.3 million||Day of drawing|
|October 4, 2021||California||$699.8 million||Multiple days before drawing|
|January 20, 2021||Maryland||$731.1 million||Over one week before drawing|
|September 27, 2020||Wisconsin||$120 million||Day of drawing|
As shown, recent big winners have purchased their tickets both on and before the drawing dates. The day you buy doesn’t influence the outcome!
Frequently Asked Questions
Here are answers to some common questions about playing Powerball on different days:
Can you buy a Powerball ticket on Sunday?
Yes, Powerball tickets can be purchased any day of the week, including Sundays. Sales are available seven days a week except on major holidays like Christmas.
Can you buy a Powerball ticket after the drawing?
Yes, you can buy Powerball tickets after the drawing, as long as sales are still open in your state. Any tickets bought post-drawing will be entered into the next drawing in a few days.
How many days in advance can you buy Powerball tickets?
Powerball tickets can typically be purchased up to 10 drawings in advance, depending on state regulations. So you may be able to buy tickets weeks or even months before the drawing you want.
How early can you buy Powerball tickets online?
Online Powerball sales also open well in advance of the next drawing. Tickets are almost always available online at least 48 hours early, sometimes longer. State lottery websites or mobile apps are the place to check.
Where can you buy Powerball tickets on Christmas?
Powerball drawings are closed on Christmas Day so no tickets that day. But tickets can be bought on Christmas Eve for the next available drawing once sales reopen afterwards.
Can you play Powerball in any state?
Powerball tickets must be purchased in a participating state. You can’t buy tickets across state lines. But people from anywhere can visit a participating state and purchase tickets legally while there.
In summary, Powerball allows ticket purchases any day of the week, not just drawing days. Tickets bought on other days are simply entered into the next available drawing. The convenience provides more flexibility for players to buy tickets when it fits their schedule. Just remember to play responsibly and within your budget, regardless of how often you play. Powerball is meant for entertainment, and with the right expectations, playing whenever you want can enhance the enjoyment!