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Which lottery is only in Washington state?

Washington state has a unique lottery system compared to other states in the United States. There is one particular lottery game that is only offered in Washington state and not available for purchase elsewhere – the Washington’s Lotto game.

Introduction to Washington’s Lotto

Washington’s Lotto is a jackpot-style lottery drawing game exclusive to the state of Washington. It was launched in 1988 as the state’s first in-house jackpot game operated directly by the Washington Lottery. Washington’s Lotto offers a minimum jackpot of $1 million and rollover jackpots that can climb into the tens of millions of dollars. It is a 6/42 game, meaning players choose 6 numbers from a field of 42.

To play Washington’s Lotto, players select 6 numbers between 1-42 or choose Quick Pick for randomly generated numbers. Tickets can be purchased for $2 per play at lottery retailers across Washington. Twice weekly drawings are held on Wednesdays and Saturdays at 8:00 PM Pacific Time. To win the jackpot, players must match all 6 winning numbers. Smaller prizes are awarded for matching 3, 4 or 5 numbers. Jackpot winners can choose to receive the prize as an annuity paid over multiple decades or as a one-time cash lump sum.

As Washington’s original in-state jackpot game, Washington’s Lotto has minted over 600 millionaires and awarded more than $4 billion in prizes to Washington residents over its lifetime. Some of the biggest Washington’s Lotto jackpots have climbed over $20 million. It consistently offers some of the best jackpot odds of any lottery in the U.S. The game play style and prize structures of Washington’s Lotto are similar to Powerball and Mega Millions, but with better overall odds for winning any prize.

Unique Features of Washington’s Lotto

Here are some of the unique features that set Washington’s Lotto apart from multi-state jackpot games and other state lotteries:

  • Washington’s Lotto jackpots start at a guaranteed $1 million and can grow into the tens of millions through rollovers.
  • All prizes, including the jackpot, are exempt from federal income taxes for Washington residents.
  • Overall odds of winning any prize are 1 in 6.2, better than most other lotteries.
  • Players can multiply non-jackpot prizes up to 10 times using the Double Play feature for an extra $1 per play.
  • Tickets can be purchased on game days until 7:45 PM for the 8 PM drawing.
  • Play is limited to in-state only rather than across multiple states.

These features help drive Washington Lotto ticket sales that fund important state programs and services. The Washington Lottery generates over $170 million annually for the state budget while providing entertainment and chances at life-changing jackpots for Washingtonians.

How Washington’s Lotto Works

Here is a step-by-step overview of how to play Washington’s Lotto:

  1. Visit an authorized Washington Lottery retailer or play online at Locate the playslip for Washington’s Lotto which displays the numbers 1-42.
  2. Select 6 numbers between 1-42 by marking the playslip or choosing Quick Pick for random numbers.
  3. Choose whether to add Double Play which multiplies non-jackpot prizes by 2, 3, 4 or 10 times for an extra $1 per play.
  4. Present the completed playslip and payment to the retailer or finalize ticket selections online. Washington’s Lotto tickets cost $2 per play.
  5. Wait for the twice weekly drawings held on Wednesdays and Saturdays at 8 PM Pacific Time.
  6. Tune in to the drawing online or on TV to see if your numbers match the 6 balls drawn from the pool of 42.
  7. Match all 6 numbers to win the jackpot which starts at $1 million and increases based on rollovers. Lesser prizes are awarded for matching 3, 4 or 5 numbers.
  8. Jackpot and Double Play prizes can be claimed up to 180 days after the drawing. All other prizes expire after 60 days.
  9. Claim winnings in person at a Washington Lottery office or by mail. Jackpot prizes can be taken as a cash lump sum or annuity payments over multiple decades.

Odds and Prizes

Washington’s Lotto offers excellent odds compared to other top prize drawings. The overall chances of winning any prize are 1 in 6.2. This table shows the odds and prize payouts for each matching combination:

Match Odds Regular Prize With Double Play
6 of 6 1 in 6,145,756 Starting Jackpot N/A
5 of 6 1 in 111,899 $2,000 Up to $20,000
4 of 6 1 in 2,393 $100 Up to $1,000
3 of 6 1 in 103 $20 Up to $200

As shown, matching all 6 numbers wins the jackpot starting at $1 million. The jackpot grows based on rollovers when there is no 6-number winner. Lesser prizes range from $20 up to $2,000. Adding Double Play for an extra $1 per ticket can multiply these non-jackpot prizes by 2x, 3x, 4x or 10x.

Notable Jackpot Wins

Over its 30+ year history, Washington’s Lotto has awarded jackpots exceeding $10 million on numerous occasions. Here are some of the biggest Washington’s Lotto jackpot winners:

  • $24.6 million – Won by a Federal Way couple in 1998 on a ticket purchased in Tacoma. This remains the state’s largest Washington’s Lotto jackpot payout.
  • $22.8 million – A retired couple from Camano Island claimed this jackpot in 2009.
  • $20.1 million – Won in 1999 by a couple from Elma who purchased the ticket in Olympia.
  • $18.3 million – A ticket sold in Sedro-Woolley produced this jackpot winner in 2003.
  • $14.1 million – This 1997 jackpot prize went to a Seattle warehouse worker.

These multimillion dollar prizes demonstrate how Washington’s Lotto jackpots can quickly escalate into mega millions thanks to rollovers. Even though the game is only available within Washington, the state’s population is sufficient to produce huge jackpot amounts.

Rollover Jackpots

One unique aspect of Washington’s Lotto is how the jackpots grow through rollovers. When no ticket matches all 6 winning numbers, the jackpot rolls over and increases for the next drawing. This continues drawing after drawing until a ticket matches the full 6-number combination.

It takes about 5-7 rollovers for the Washington’s Lotto jackpot to reach $10 million or more. Jackpots in the $20+ million range typically require 10+ consecutive drawings with no grand prize winner. Rollovers stimulate the jackpot fever that prompts more players to buy Lotto tickets when the top prize climbs higher.

The record for the longest Washington’s Lotto rollover streak is 28 drawings. This led to a $21.3 million jackpot won in 1990. Rollovers are good for players because the jackpots grow substantially. They also benefit the state, since unclaimed prize funds are used to support government services.

Buying Tickets and Making Selections

Washington’s Lotto tickets can be purchased at any of over 3,000 authorized retailers across the state. Many grocery stores, gas stations, convenience stores and pharmacies carry Lotto tickets. Players can also purchase tickets online through the state lottery website or mobile app.

When buying tickets in person, players fill out a playslip with their number picks or ask for computer-generated Quick Picks. This playslip is handed to the cashier along with payment to print the official ticket. Standard playslips allow selection of up to 5 sets of 6 numbers each. Advanced playslips can generate up to 20 consecutive plays.

Players have full control over their number selections. Some choose significant numbers like birthdays, while others prefer random Quick Picks. Combination and key number selection strategies are also used. An advantage of Washington’s Lotto is that players choose from only 42 numbers compared to 69 in Powerball and Mega Millions.

Tickets can be purchased on draw days until 7:45 PM Pacific Time for the 8 PM drawing. Ticket pricing and multiplier options are clearly displayed at lottery retailers. Players must be 18 or older to play per state law.

Claiming Prizes

For prizes under $600, winning Washington’s Lotto tickets can be cashed at any authorized lottery retailer. Jackpot and larger prizes must be claimed in person at any of the five Washington Lottery regional offices located throughout the state. Prizes over $100,000 can also be claimed by mail.

The cash value jackpot amount and annuity options are detailed on the Washington Lottery website after each drawing. Tickets must be signed and winning numbers validated prior to payment. Photo ID and a Social Security number are required for tax reporting. Washington does not tax state lottery winnings for residents.

Washington’s Lotto prizes must be claimed within 180 days of the drawing for jackpots and Double Play wins. All other prizes expire after 60 days if unclaimed. Expired prizes are added to future game pools or directed to specific state educational programs depending on the prize amount.

Responsible Play

Washington’s Lotto is intended as entertainment for adults 21 and over. The state lottery provides resources to promote responsible play. This includes a Voluntary Exclusion Program that allows players to ban themselves from lottery purchases. Treatment referrals are offered to those with gambling disorders.

Lottery games should be played in moderation as part of a balanced lifestyle and budget. Excessive spending in pursuit of jackpots can lead to financial and personal problems. Know the odds of lottery games and remember that perseverance doesn’t increase the chance of winning.

Parents and guardians must prevent underage lottery play. Talk to youth about responsible gaming practices. If gambling becomes an issue, resources are available through the Washington State Problem Gambling Helpline and Gamblers Anonymous support groups.

Lottery Proceeds

As part of its mandate, the Washington Lottery generates important funding for state programs and services. More than $17 billion has been raised for public education and other government-sponsored causes since inception.

Proceeds from Washington’s Lotto and other games support a variety of state initiatives, including:

  • K-12 public schools
  • Early childhood education
  • College scholarships and financial aid
  • Construction of public school facilities
  • Support services for veterans
  • Problem gambling treatment and prevention

Unlike most states, Washington’s Lottery was founded entirely to provide funds for the public good. Playing Washington’s Lotto and other state lottery games helps improve communities across Washington.


Washington’s Lotto is a jackpot lottery game exclusive to the state of Washington. It offers residents the chance to win multimillion dollar jackpots and other cash prizes twice weekly. Jackpots start at $1 million and grow based on rollovers when there is no grand prize winner.

As the state’s original in-house jackpot drawing launched in 1988, Washington’s Lotto has awarded over $4 billion in prizes to players. It offers excellent odds compared to other lotteries, with an overall 1 in 6 chance of winning. Tickets cost $2 each with the ability to multiply non-jackpot prizes up to 10 times using the Double Play feature.

While similar in concept to Powerball and Mega Millions, Washington’s Lotto is only available in Washington state. It provides millions in annual funding to support vital state programs and services. For jackpot excitement exclusive to Washington residents, Washington’s Lotto can’t be beat.

Washington’s Lotto should be played responsibly for those 21 and older. Excessive lottery spending can lead to issues. If gambling becomes a problem, resources are available through organizations like the Washington State Problem Gambling Helpline. Overall, when enjoyed in moderation, Washington’s Lotto offers in-state jackpot thrills you won’t find anywhere else!