Types of Lottery Games

Lottery games are a type of gambling where a player selects numbers with the goal of winning a prize. These games vary in their payout structure and range from simple drawings to multi-state lotteries with jackpots that can reach millions of dollars.

There are two main types of lottery: draw and terminal based. Each has different rules and a specific number of prize levels that players can win.

Draw: A lottery game where the winning numbers are drawn from a pool of numbers that are chosen by the lottery. Most draw games have a jackpot that keeps growing until it is won, and each drawing typically occurs every four or five minutes.

Terminal: An electronic device used to play lottery games such as lotto or other numbers games and to cash tickets for those games. Lottery terminals are available in a variety of shapes and sizes, from a small mobile device to a free-standing kiosk.

Ticket: An official, machine-readable paper form for selecting a set of lottery numbers, often referred to as a “play slip.” These forms are available at retail outlets and can be read by lottery terminals. A lottery terminal will generate a lottery ticket when a play slip is inserted into the reader and may include a wager amount and other information.

Latex: The soft coating on an instant ticket that is removed by the player to reveal play data. A latex coating also protects the printed numbers from weather and dirt.

Book: A set of instant tickets packaged together in fan folded sets, usually containing 100 or more tickets for a particular price. A book is also a set of tickets in a package that can be sold individually.

REPLAY: To play your numbers again, hand the Lottery Retailer your existing ticket and ask for a REPLAY. A REPLAY ticket will have the REPLAY “R” printed on it.

Validation: A process of confirming that a ticket is a winning ticket and marking it as such in the lottery’s system. A validation clerk will receive a message when the ticket is validated. If the ticket is a winning ticket, it can be validated only once.

A retailer’s (or validation clerk’s) role is to verify that a ticket is valid and that the player is not attempting to cash in a previously validated ticket. This is an important step in the validation process to ensure that all winning lottery tickets are verified.

Retailers: Licensed lottery retailers who sell tickets for the lottery and perform other administrative functions for the lottery. They may be a business, a public service agency, or an individual.

Sales Cut-off Time: The date that ticket sales for a given lottery game close in each participating state. Ticket purchase cut-off times may vary by lottery game and can be as early as noon in some states.

POS: Point of sale is an area of display for lottery merchandise, which is primarily found near a lottery terminal or register. These displays are designed to attract customers and advertise a lottery game.