The state of Florida has been running its lottery operations successfully for over 30 years. In 1986, voters approved a constitutional amendment, resulting in the establishment of the Florida Lottery and the agency that oversees it.
Since the launch of the first game, Millionaire, the lottery has contributed over $38 billion toward education in the state. It currently offers seven draw games and almost 80 scratch-offs at over 13,000 retail locations statewide. Options include Powerball, Mega Millions, Cash4Life and Florida Lotto. Over the past three-plus decades, the lottery has paid more than $72.5 billion in prizes to Floridians.
This page covers the Florida Lottery’s games, jackpots and other gambling options. Read on for more info.
Florida online lottery
You cannot buy online lottery tickets in Florida. The state has also given no indication that it plans to change this. You can, however, find Florida Lottery apps for Android and iOS devices.
Although these apps won’t let you purchase a ticket, they still offer some useful features. You can check on current jackpots, and you’ll also get to search past winning numbers and save your favorites. You can even shake your phone to select the combinations randomly.
Moreover, you’ll have the option of scanning the barcode on your physical ticket to check if you’ve won. If you have, you can present the digital play slip to a local retailer. If your prize is in the range that the retailer can pay, you can collect right there.
The apps also contain detailed instructions for all the games, as well as locations for the nearest retailers. Most notably, you can participate in second chance draws on the app and watch live draws.
What lottery games can I play in Florida?
The Florida Lottery is part of the Multi-State Lottery Association and offers Powerball, Mega Millions, Cash4Life and other draws that have reshaped the lottery industry nationwide.
Still, the state also takes pride in its own Florida Lotto draw. This game has paid 1,000 jackpots throughout its history, turning at least 1,000 players into millionaires. In addition, it offers close to 80 scratch-offs with prizes that range from $50 to $1 million.
Florida Lottery multi-state draw games
In early January 2009, following a deal with the Multi-State Lottery Association, Florida sold its first Powerball tickets. Since then, Floridians have won over $1 billion in jackpot prizes. Mega Millions then became available in the state in 2013. Meanwhile the regional lottery Cash4Life completes Florida’s multi-state games.
Powerball requires you to select five numbers from 1 through 69. You then need to add one Powerball number from 1 to 26. Each ticket costs $2. For an extra $1, you can activate the Power Play option, which can multiply any non-jackpot prizes by two, three, four, five or 10.
If you don’t have a set of favorite numbers, you can choose the quick pick option. In that case, a random number generator will select them for you. Also, the advance play option lets you pick the number of draws you want to participate in with these specific numbers. You just need to tell the retailer how many of them you want.
The Powerball has been kind to players from Florida. In fact, one of the three winning tickets for the biggest ever jackpot of nearly $1.6 billion was from this state. Additionally, the second largest single-ticket jackpot payout of close to $600 million also came from Florida.
Florida Powerball key points
- A Powerball ticket costs $2 per play.
- You can purchase tickets for up to 52 consecutive draws, depending on the time of year.
- The record for a single-ticket Powerball jackpot from Florida is $590.5 million.
Florida Mega Millions
Mega Million tickets became available in Florida for the first time in May 2013. This multi-state and multimillion-dollar lottery is just as popular as Powerball. The payout potential is pretty close, as well. If you want to qualify, you need to choose five numbers from 1 through 70 and one Mega Ball number from 1 through 25.
Each ticket costs $2 per play. However, if you want to trigger the Megaplier option, make sure to tick the indicated box. This can multiply any non-jackpot winnings by up to five times at a cost of $1.
Florida Mega Millions also allows quick pick and advance play. These give you the options to choose random numbers and to purchase tickets with the same numbers for multiple drawings.
Just like the Powerball winner, the jackpot winner of Mega Millions can choose either a lump payout or 30-year installments. The biggest ever Florida Mega Millions win was $450 million, on a ticket sold at a 7-Eleven in Port Richey in 2018. It was the fifth largest single-ticket jackpot in the history of the lottery.
Florida Mega Millions key points
- Florida’s record for a Mega Millions jackpot is $450 million.
- The Megaplier option can multiply non-jackpot winnings up to five times.
- A ticket costs $2 per play.
Florida Cash4Life is a regional multi-state lottery game with top prizes that pay out for the life of the winner. You can select five numbers from 1 to 60, and a single Cash Ball number from 1 to 4. If you get the initial five numbers right, you’ll receive $1,000 a week for life. If you also get the Cash Ball number, the grand prize is $1,000 a day for life.
You can use the quick pick option to get the machine to choose the numbers for you. Advance play is available here, as well, allowing you to purchase tickets for up to 30 consecutive drawings.
During the history of the Florida Cash4Life lottery, there have been 22 winners of the two lifetime prizes. Most of them have taken the cash-out option, which has ranged from $1 million to $7 million.
Florida Cash4Life key points
- Jackpot prize pays $1,000 a day for life.
- A ticket costs $2.
- There have been over 22 winners from Florida.
Florida multi-state lottery draw times
Powerball lottery draws take place on Wednesdays and Saturdays at 10:59 p.m. Eastern Time, while the draws for Mega Millions take place on Tuesdays and Fridays at 11 p.m. Eastern Time.
If you want to give Cash4Life a go, you can do so daily by watching the draw at 9 p.m. Eastern Time. Remember that you can buy tickets for the Powerball and Mega Millions lotteries an hour before the draws at the latest. However, if you are interested in Cash4Life, you can get your ticket up to half an hour before the draw starts.
Florida state draw games
The popularity of statewide lotteries in Florida rivals that of the multi-state ones, probably thanks to the frequency of draws, diverse gameplay and payout potential. The options are Florida Lotto, Fantasy 5 and Jackpot Triple Play, alongside several lotteries from the Pick series.
- Florida Lotto — Florida Lotto is the state’s original jackpot lottery, with a jackpot that starts at $1 million. The jackpot keeps increasing with each drawing until someone becomes the winner. After that, it restarts. Players choose six numbers between 1 and 53. There are plenty of add-on features for this game, starting with the Double Play, which gives you a chance to win $250,000 in an additional drawing, or an EZmatch feature that provides a chance to win an instant cash prize of up to $500. The price of each ticket is $2, while the add-ons cost $1 each.
- Jackpot Triple Play — In Jackpot Triple Play, you choose six numbers from 1 to 46 for the first set of numbers. However, there are two other sets that are chosen randomly. They give you a triple chance to win the jackpot. The ticket costs $1, and for $1 more, you can combine the winning numbers from all three sets. The jackpots range between $250,000 and $2 million.
- Fantasy 5 — The Fantasy 5 lottery requires you to pick five numbers from 1 to 36, and if all five of them are correct, you will receive the top prize of around $200,000. The lottery allows you to use quick pick, advance play and even EZmatch options. A regular ticket costs $1, while any additional features also cost $1.
- Pick 5 — Pick 5 is a twice-a-day lottery that offers a top prize of $50,000. Your task is to choose a number from 0 to 9 from each of the columns on the ticket. Once you’re done, you should have a total of five digits. Then, you need to choose the type of bet you want to place and the betting value of either 50 cents or $1:
- Straight — Here, you need to match all three winning numbers in the exact order.
- Box — A box play allows you to win if your numbers match the winning ones in any order.
- Straight/box — This betting option combines a 50-cent straight play with a 50-cent box play.
- Pick 4 — Pick 4 is similar to Pick 5. The difference is that here, you need to choose four numbers from 0 to 9. The top prize is $5,000. In addition to straight, box, straight/box, and combo betting options, players can also opt for the pairs play. Here, they need to select only two digits in a front pair (select a number from the first two columns only), mid pair (select a number from the middle two columns only), or back pair (select a number from the last two columns only). You can wager between 50¢ or $1 per play.
- Pick 3 — Pick 3 is even simpler than the previous two options. Players only need to select three numbers, 0 through 9, and select the betting type: straight, box, straight/box, combo, front pair, or back pair. The wager is also set between 50¢ or $1 per play. The max payout is $500.
- Pick 2 — In the Pick 2 lottery game, you need to select a number from 0 to 9 from each of the two columns. Your play options include straight, box, straight/box, front number, or back number. The front number option is a winning one if the first number you’ve selected matches the first number drawn. On the other hand, the back number is the winner if the first number printed on the ticket matches the last winning number of the draw. The top prize is $50.
Florida state draw times
The Florida Lotto, Jackpot Triple Play and Fantasy 5 draws take place on Wednesdays and Saturdays at 11:15 p.m., while the draws for the lotteries from the Pick series happen twice a day — the midday drawing is at 1:30 p.m., while the evening drawing is at 9:45 p.m., all times Eastern.
Florida scratch tickets
The options for Florida Lottery scratch-offs are pretty vast, too. There are almost 80 games with prizes that range between $50 and more than $1 million. If you don’t want to bet too much, you can opt for the $1 Gold Rush Supreme or Double Payday. However, you can also go for pricier scratch-off options like Fastest Road, a $30 scratch-off with a $1 million prize.
Other gambling options in Florida
Gambling in Florida has been going back and forth between legal and illegal for decades. Currently, apart from the state lottery, other legal gambling options include tribal casinos and casino boats. These are allowed to offer slots, blackjack, roulette and live poker in Florida. Online casinos are not legal, but you can bet on horse racing on a pari-mutuel basis. Legal sports betting in Florida is expected before 2023.
Florida Lottery history
The Florida Lottery was established in 1986. The first game was a $1 scratch-off called Millionaire. In 1988, Florida Lotto produced the biggest lotto millionaire in the world at the time, with its top prize of $52 million. Years after, in 2009 and 2013, the state began offering Powerball and Mega Millions lotteries.
Since its inception, the Florida Lottery has paid more than $38 billion to the state’s public education system, which is the lottery’s only beneficiary. The Bright Futures Scholarship program is funded by this money, which has given more than 880,000 students an opportunity to study in college.
For every dollar you spend on the lottery, 65.5% goes to prizes, 25.5% goes to public education, 5.6% is for the retailers’ commission, 1.4% is reserved for ticket vendor fees, and 1% remains for the lottery administration.