Lottery in Virginia 2021

Like with many other US states, VA lottery was founded following the vote in favor of establishing a state lottery. This happened back in 1987 and residents of Virginia have had access to various lottery draws ever since, with the offering becoming better and better with each passing year. Today, lottery in Virginia offers a variety of interstate and state-only draws and lottery games.

Unlike many states, however, there was initially no clear plan for the funds generated through the government-run lottery. Instead, proceeds initially went to the General Fund. This changed in 2000, when it was finally decided that all the money generated from lottery sales would be directed towards education, which is in line with laws in a number of other states in the US.

VA Lottery: Playing Offline

Residents of Virginia have access to a variety of different draws and scratchers at retail stores all over the country. The state lottery has been operating since 1987 and it represents an important source of revenue for the state, especially the education sector, as 100 percent of VA state lottery proceeds goes towards the K-12 public education.

As of right now, the lottery is set to remain in Virginia in its online and offline format as even the latest interpretation of the Wire Act by the DOJ doesn’t address lotteries. Hence, there is no reason to think residents of VA will be prevented from buying lottery tickets any time soon.

Virginia Lottery: Playing Online

The website of Virginia Lottery gives players a chance to not only check out the results of various draws but register and participate in many of them buying tickets directly on the site. In addition to the modern site, the lottery also launched a Virginia lottery app for Android, which makes it even easier to enjoy all the different games on your mobile device. However, it is worth noting that the number of draws you can register for online is still somewhat limited.

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VA Lottery Review: Product Overview

The VA lottery offers a great selection of games players can easily participate in. Some of them are available through Virginia lottery com site, while many are still only offered at land-based retail venues. One way or the other, players can certainly participate in numerous big draws and have a shot at some huge wins.

Virginia lotteries 2021

The total number of lottery draws residents of Virginia can participate in is quite decent although not as big as in some other states. That said, VA players can still buy tickets for two major lotteries, namely Mega Millions and Powerball. They can also try their luck with Cash4Life, another hugely popular drawing in the USA.

Mega Millions is one of the two most popular lottery draws in the US. Taking place on Tuesdays and Fridays, it offers a chance to win a huge jackpot, which starts at USD 40,000,000 but regularly reaches nine figures. Residents of Virginia can but draw tickets online and at live retail location at USD 2 apiece. The odds of winning the jackpot are 1 in 302 million, while the odds of landing the second prize (up to USD 5,000,000 with multipliers) are about 1 in 12 million.

You can also buy VA lottery tickets for Powerball draws taking place on Wednesdays and Saturdays. Ticket prizes are the same, i.e. USD 2 a pop and the main jackpot is very similar, as it starts at USD 40,000,000 and grows with each draw. Winning odds are slightly better, though, at 1 in 292,201,338. These tickets are available for purchase on the lottery Virginia website.

Cash4Life is another hugely popular lottery draw that takes place biweekly, on Mondays and Thursdays at 9 PM. Players need to select five different numbers as well as one Cash Ball. To win the jackpot, which is USD 1,000 every day for the rest of your life (adjusted for 20 years) you’ll need to match all five numbers and the Cash Ball. However, matching just five balls will also get you a very nice prize of USD 25,000 every year for the next twenty years.

Virginia Lottery: Bank a Million

How does the idea of winning a cool million with all taxes paid and you getting straight up cash into your bank account sound? If it sounds good, you should check out Virginia-only Bank a Million game, which offers exactly this. You can win USD 1,000,000 with all taxes paid and nothing to worry about whatsoever.

In this VA lotto game, players need to choose 6 numbers out of the total of 40. Draws take place two times a week, on Wednesdays and Saturdays, and tickets are sold at USD 2 each. However, players can split their bets into two USD 1 plays or even four USD 0.50 plays. Of course, to win the Virginia lottery jackpot, you’ll need to play at USD 2. At lower plays, prizes are proportionately smaller as well.

The odds of winning the main prize are approximately 1 in 3,838,000, which isn’t all that bad for a shot at the million. The odds of winning the second prize of USD 20,000, when matching five numbers and the Bonus Ball are 1 in 639,730. Bank a Million tickets can’t be bought online, though, so you’ll need to buy them at one of the retail locations.

Games & Scratch Cards

In addition to these main draws, there are several other lottery and lotto Virginia games available to the players as well as a variety of Virginia lottery scratchers offering instant prizes. These often offer smaller potential wins but also much better odds of winning.

  • Cash 5 is a classic lotto game where you pick five from the set of 34 numbers. The minimum ticket price is USD 1 but you can play as low as USD 0.25 per combo. The main jackpot is 100,000 times the wager, so the maximum is USD 100,000, with the odds of winning of 1 in 278,000. Draws take place twice a day. Lotto 5 isn’t offered on the site but you can play it on the lottery app.
  • Pick 4 is exactly what the name suggests. It is a draw game where you’re trying to guess four numbers but you have several different play options to choose from. Tickets are available at USD 0.50 and USD 1 and the maximum win is USD 5,000. Draws take place two times every day.
  • Pick 3 is a very similar game but you have to guess just three instead of four numbers. Odds of guessing and winning the small lottery jackpot of USD 500 are exactly 1 in 1,000.

Special Offerings and Drawings

Ever since 2007, Virginia has been offering its Millionaire Raffle. For the first couple of years, there were two raffles each year, but now there is just a single drawing taking place on the New Year’s Day every year. Tickets for Virginia’s New Year’s Millionaire Raffle are sold throughout the year for USD 20 apiece, available at various retail locations but not online.

There are three USD 1,000,000 prizes up for grabs each year, with odds of winning set at 1 in 125,000. To win, a player must match all six numbers on their raffle ticket to the numbers drawn in the raffle in the exact order.

There are also five prizes of USD 100,000 each as well as 500 prizes of USD 500. This exclusive official VA lottery thus represents a nice opportunity to get your hands on some extra cash to kick the New Year off in style as overall chances of buying a winning ticket are 1 in 738. All winners of the raffle agree to have their name and photo used for the marketing purposes by the VA lottery, so that’s something to consider if anonymity is very important to you for whatever reason.

VA Lottery Online: Online Features & Services

As already mentioned, the website of the state lottery offers services that go beyond just checking the Virginia lottery numbers from the past drawings. If you’re looking for Virginia lottery buy tickets online options, you’ll find that the site offers a chance to buy some on the spot. This applies at least to major draws like Mega Millions, Powerball, and Cash4Life.

In addition to the main site, VA lottery launched a special mobile app in 2019, which features a great number of online options that aren’t available on desktop computers. With this move, they’ve clearly shown they understand the market and the increasing need for better coverage for mobile phones as more and more players are using these for all of their online gaming needs, including lottery.

Using Virginia Lottery Site

To get started with the website or the mobile app, you’ll first need to register. On the site, you can simply follow the registration link while to use the app, you’ll need to download it and install it on your device. Apps are available in their respective Android and iPhone stores so you’ll experience no technical difficulties here.

Once you register with your information, you can use your credit or debit card or a bank transfer to fund your account. On the mobile app, you can also use PayPal as an option. The minimum deposit is USD 20 and on your very first deposit you’ll get a welcome bonus of USD 10 you can use to buy more tickets. At the moment, you can only buy subscriptions for Powerball, Mega Millions, and Cash4Life, with the minimum of four draws (two weeks).

Winnings up to USD 600 are transferred to your online account and you can withdraw them back to your bank or PayPal. Debit cards aren’t currently supported for withdrawals. For winnings in excess of USD 600 you’ll receive a check from the Virginia lottery office.

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VA Lottery: History

As mentioned in the introduction, Virginia state lottery was founded in 1987. First lottery tickets in Virginia were sold in November of 1988, kicking things off. For the first ten years, proceeds from the state lottery were sent to the General Fund. In 2000, a new law was passed, stating that all proceeds from the VA lottery are to be spent towards education. Since then until today, the lottery has paid in excess of USD 9 billion.

It is interesting to note that Virginia actually had lottery much before any of these recent changes. In fact, back in the early 1600s, before it even became a state, there was The Great Virginia Lottery. Proceeds from this early lottery went towards establishing the first universities and libraries, building churches, etc.  In fact, University of Virginia was, in part, funded from the proceeds from this early-day lottery.

Virginia Lottery: Biggest Wins

In more than 30 years it’s been selling lottery tickets, Virginia has seen its fair share of huge winners. In fact, there have been nine Mega Millions Virginia lottery winners to date as well as one Powerball winner from the state. This is certainly a pretty good average and it is no surprise lottery is one of the favorite pastimes in the state.

The biggest win in Virginia was collected by Peggy and J.R. Tripplet, who took home the massive Mega Millions jackpot of USD 234 million in February of 2004. J.R., a retired truck driver, claimed the win wasn’t such a big deal for him despite the huge, life-changing amount. Instead of taking the full sum, the couple opted for a single lump payment of USD 141 million before taxes. According to experts, they were probably left with about USD 100 million after all taxes were paid.

Steve Williams won the second-largest jackpot in history of Virginia modern lottery. He was the only winner of the October 16, 2009 Mega Millions draw, winning USD 200 million. Instead of cashing in on his win immediately, Williams decided to wait it out and only took his check in March of 2012, almost five months later. He, too, took the lump sum of USD 125 million before taxes instead of annual payments for the full amount.

Top Five Lottery Wins in Virginia

RankLotteryDatePrize in USD
1Mega MillionsFeb. 20, 2004234,000,000
2Mega MillionsOct. 16, 2009200,000,000
3Mega MillionsJuly 1, 2011107,000,000
4Mega MillionsAug. 31, 200782,500,000
5Mega MillionsMay 1, 200975,600,000

Chances: The Online Development of Lottery in Virginia

So far, you’ve learned all you should know about Virginia lottery how to play and what options are there at your disposal. When it comes to the online segment of things, there are certainly some things that need to be made better in the future if the state lottery is to continue to thrive and increase its revenues.

As you could see, the number of draws you can get involved directly from the site is quite limited at this point in time and it is based on the subscription model. While you can find the list of all the different scratch cards and available prizes, you can’t actually buy any of these on the site.

So, moving forward, we expect the VA lottery will change some of these things and make them more convenient and player friendly. The mobile app will likely get most of the focus as this seems to be what they’re currently putting a great emphasis on.

VA Lottery Online FAQs

How to check Virginia lottery tickets online?

You can check all the Virginia lottery tickets on the site or using the mobile app to scan the tickets and immediately get the results. The lottery site is regularly updated with the latest draw numbers and other important information to help players stay in the loop.

How much are Virginia lottery tickets?

Lottery ticket prices range from USD 0.50 to around USD 2 for most draws, including Mega Millions, Powerball, and Cash4Life. More expensive tickets, sold at USD 20 apiece, are the ones for Virginia’s New Year’s Millionaire Raffle but odds of winning in this raffle are also adjusted for higher prices.

How much is Virginia lottery tax?

According to current laws, all wins above USD 600 are reported tax agencies and you’ll need to pay 24 percent federal tax as well as 4 percent state tax. For winnings in excess of USD 5,000, the lottery will automatically withhold applicable taxes.

Can Virginia lottery winners remain anonymous?

As of right now, players from Virginia who win big cannot remain anonymous. Only six US states allow for this option and VA isn’t one of them. However, there is a bill in the works, which, if passed, would allow winners who win more than USD 10,000,000 to keep their anonymity if they so choose.

Where does Virginia lottery money go?

All proceeds from the VA lottery go towards the education in the state so by buying lottery tickets, all players also help students in Virginia regardless of whether they win or lose.

Conclusion: Dare to Dream Big

If you’re a resident of Virginia, you have access to all the major lottery and lotto draws. While some of the tickets aren’t available online like in Georgia, for example, you’ll have no problems finding them at local retail locations across the state. So, dare to dream big and try your luck chasing some of those huge jackpots. The next one could have your name written all over it!
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