Pennsylvania passed a set of gambling expansion laws in October 2017 that included the authorization of online lottery sales. PA Lottery officials announced in January 2018 that the first internet lottery games would hit the market in the spring.
PA online lottery history
The US Department of Justice released its legal interpretation of the Federal Wire Act in December 2011. It said the act only applies to sports betting. States wondering if online lottery sales were legal suddenly had the green light. Several states began online lottery sales since then, including:
- Minnesota (since repealed)
- New Hampshire
Pennsylvania has had a state lottery since 1972. Its proceeds have always gone to programs for elderly residents. Online lottery proceeds will continue to do so.
The PA House of Representatives’ Gaming Oversight Committee currently oversees the Pennsylvania Lottery. This group will oversee online lottery sales as well.
What online lottery games will Pennsylvania offer?
There are thousands of lottery retailers across the state offering a variety of different PA Lottery games. This includes Draw Games, Scratch Offs, Fast Play and Monitor Games.
It is likely the PA Lottery will make tickets for its most popular draw games available online. Plus, lottery officials already announced they will be offering online lottery games similar to online slots or Video Lottery Terminal games. These games are also likely to include electronic versions of the state’s most popular scratch-off tickets.
The PA lottery also offers Keno and Virtual Sports Monitor games. These games could be available online as well. For now though, Keno launched in bars and restuarants on May 1. Virtual sports should be up next. The first phase of online lottery games will not overlap with existing games or offerings.
The Pennsylvania Lottery offers several different in-state and multi-state draw games. The state should start start online sales of draw games in spring 2018. The games will eventually include many of the same ones available at lottery retailers. These include:
- Mega Millions
- Pennsylvania Lottery Cash 4 Life
- Cash 5!
- Match 6 Lotto
- Treasure Hunt
- Millionaire Raffle
- Pick 2, Pick 3, Pick 4, Pick 5
Powerball is multi-state draw game offered in 44 states, Washington, D.C., US Virgin Islands, and Puerto Rico. Most states offering online lottery tickets sell Powerball. Tickets are $2. Jackpots start at $40 million. Draws are held Wednesday and Saturday nights. Powerball jackpots can grow huge. The largest in history reached $1.6 billion.
Mega Millions is a multi-state draw game offered in 44 states, Washington, D.C., and the U.S. Virgin Islands. Most states offering online lottery tickets sell Mega Millions online. Tickets are $2. Like Powerball, jackpots start at $40 million. Mega Millions draws are Tuesday and Friday.
PA lottery officials revealed plans to launch online lottery games, which should include electronic versions of scratch-off games. These will be new titles for the Pennsylvania marketplace.
Electronic scratch-offs feature a graphic interface replacing the traditional ticket. The games are virtually the same. The objective of both is to match prize amounts or symbols.
There are more than 50 traditional scratch-off tickets available at lottery retailers in Pennsylvania. Some of the most popular scratch-off tickets in the state include:
- $3 Bingo
- $20 $1 Million Pennsylvania Payout
- $10 50X the Bucks
- $20 Big Money Millionaire
- $5 $100,000 Wish List
- $20 All the Money Millionaire Edition
- $30 $3,000,000 Extreme Green
Fast Play games offered by the Pennsylvania Lottery are similar to Scratch Offs. Only there is no need to scratch. Fast Play games are available from lottery retailers and self-service touch-screen lottery vending terminals. Fast Play tickets are printed on-demand.
Some of the state’s Fast Play games may be available online. The most popular Fast Play games in PA include:
- Gold Fish
- Keystone Cash
- Fast Cash Bingo
- Triple Win
- Lucky You
The PA lottery offers Keno and Virtual Sports Monitor Games at select retailers across the state. It very well could offer these games online as well.
Keno is an instant lottery game. Draws occur every four minutes. Players try to match up to 10 of 20 numbers drawn. Players can follow the draw on monitors available at retail locations.
Virtual sports are simulated sporting events players can wager on. The PA Lottery randomly generates animated outcomes and displays them on monitors at retail locations.
Signing up for the PA online lottery
Players will likely need to sign up for an account with the PA Lottery in order to buy tickets online. This is a similar process to the one used in other states offering online lottery ticket sales.
PA players will need to be 18 years and up, have a valid address in the state, and be within state lines to play.
Players should be able to add funds to their online lottery account using a number of different deposit methods or by visiting a licensed lottery retailer.
Players should be able to deposit funds safely and securely into a PA online lottery online account using one of several methods, including:
- Major credit cards
- Debit cards
- Electronic bank transfer
- Online payment processor
- Prepaid card from a licensed retailer
Online prepaid cards should be available at the thousands of PA Lottery retailers across the state. The cards should allow players to deposit in an online account using cash at the retailer.
The PA online lottery will likely run like most others. Wins up to $600 will automatically deposit into your PA online lottery account. However, anything above that may require the need to visit a PA Lottery office first.
Prizes $50,000 and up will certainly require the player to visit PA Lottery headquarters and claim the prize in person.
PA online lottery promos
The online lottery in PA will likely launch with special promotions and offers for new players. This could include free tickets, second chance drawings, or a variety of different bonuses.
It is also quite likely the PA Lottery devises a player loyalty rewards program offering points for volume play. Players will likely be able to redeem these points for tickets or other discounts and prizes.