What You Should Know About The Mega Millions Jackpot Now That It’s Over $1 Billion

By Kristi Eckert | Published

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When it comes to the lottery you have those people that play consistently. You know the type. They are the ones with their long list of numbers that you can reliably see at a 7-Eleven on any given day rattling off figures in hopes that the lottery gods will bless them with loads of cash. Then you have those (which I’m sure is most of the populace) that only play on occasion. Usually, the occasion is that a jackpot has gotten so high it’s garnering media attention. This is when that “ya gotta be in it to win it” mindset kicks in. And this is currently what’s happening with the Mega Millions lottery.

The winning amount is currently at a whopping $1.025 billion. I’m sure a great many individuals won’t even know what to do with that kind of money. That being said, there are a few things one should know about the Mega Millions lottery before you drop a ten or twenty-dollar bill on some tickets. 

Perhaps, most importantly, one should be aware that the next Mega Millions drawing is scheduled to happen on Friday, July 29, 2022, at 11 PM EST. So if you are planning on being in it to win it, you best scoop up your tickets before then. Each ticket costs $2. Now, with that out of the way, onto the nitty gritty. 

WHERE CAN YOU BUY A TICKET?

 Any convenience store (Just kidding, I jest, I jest). In all seriousness, the Mega Million is not playable in every state within the United States. Alabama, Alaska, Hawaii, Nevada, and Utah do not sell Mega Millions lottery tickets. However, if you happen to be a resident of any of those states it doesn’t mean you can’t play. You just have to travel to another state that does sell them. Although, I imagine if you are a resident of Alaska or Hawaii you’d either have to be a lottery fanatic or pretty financially comfortable given that those states are outside of the contiguous US. Have you seen the cost of plane tickets lately?

Also, interestingly enough, you don’t have to be a US resident to play the Mega Millions. The ticket just has to be purchased in a US state where it’s sold. Additionally, some states offer tickets for purchase online. In Georgia, Illinois, Kentucky, Michigan, New Hampshire, North Carolina, North Dakota, Pennsylvania, Virginia, and the District of Columbia you can buy tickets online. In New York, there is an online subscription available to play the Mega Millions. 

HOW MANY NUMBERS DO YOU HAVE TO CHOOSE?

If you want to pick your own Mega Millions lottery numbers you’ll need to choose any 5 numbers between 1 and 70. Then one number between 1 and 25. The last number is the Mega Ball number. If you aren’t attached to any numbers in particular then you can always go the quick pick route and numbers will be randomly generated for you. 

WHAT IF YOU WIN? 

If in the one and 300-some-odd-million chance you do happen to win there are two ways to claim your payout. You can choose a lump sum, which is a fraction of what the total prize money is, but still a sizable chunk of change. NPR pointed out that should there be a winner after the next drawing the lump sum payout would be around $600 million. That’s nothing to sneeze at. However, there’s also an annual option. With the annual option you’ll get a calculated payout immediately, and then an annual salary for the rest of your life. And that’s really all you need to know. Other than that, if you’re not 18 don’t try to buy a ticket and best of luck!