Connecticut Lottery players, there’s big news for you: A third Powerball drawing each week is coming.
As is the case with any announcement of this magnitude, there are ramifications that lottery players in the state should be understand.
Outside of simply providing a third night each week when players need to check their tickets, most of the experience of playing the popular draw game from the Multi-State Lottery Association isn’t actually changing. However, the CT Lottery is temporarily altering one policy in the buildup to the change.
Details of the third Powerball drawing
Starting Aug. 23, Monday nights are now also Powerball drawing nights. Just like the existing Wednesday and Saturday drawings, the live draws will occur at 10:59 p.m. ET. For the most part, that’s the only real change.
Each play will still cost $2, with the option to add the Power Play multiplier for another dollar. Cut-off times for the Wednesday and Saturday drawings are still 10 p.m. That will be the cut-off time for the new Monday drawings as well. Perhaps most important, the odds of any single play winning will be identical: 1 in 24.9 for any prize and 1 in 292,201,338 for the progressive jackpot.
With the new third weekly drawing on the way, how do odds of winning go unaffected? It’s important to remember that those are the odds of a single set of five numbers plus the Power Ball matching those in the drawing.
While the change does mean there will be more winning numbers each week, it doesn’t mean any of your plays have a better chance of winning in any particular drawing. Because the numbers are different from one drawing to the next, the odds “reset” between draws no matter how many drawings take place.
There is one change unconnected to the odds or price of an individual play that Connecticuters should know about, though. It’s temporary and only really comes into play if you’re in the habit of buying plays for advance drawings.
CT Lottery temporarily limiting advance sales
Normally, Connecticuters and visitors who play Powerball can buy plays for up to 26 consecutive drawings. Some players prefer to do so because it cuts down on the number of trips they have to make to buy tickets or if they have “lucky numbers” they want to play regularly.
Currently, the greatest number of advance draws players can purchase tickets for in Connecticut is 10. That number will decrease over the following weeks. Here’s the schedule:
- July 21-Aug. 6: Five draws
- Aug. 7-10: Four draws
- Aug. 11-13: Three draws
- Aug. 14-17: Two draws
- Aug. 18-20: One draw
- Aug. 21: Plays are only available for that night’s drawing
Starting Aug. 22, the options for players in Connecticut will return to the normal cap of 26 advance draws. However, those plays won’t last as long, obviously, since the thrice-weekly drawings begin the next day. Amidst a summer of big changes for lotteries nationwide, this Powerball drawing addition might be the biggest. It isn’t the only change, though.
Other lottery changes happening this summer
Another Multi-State Lottery Association game is upping its drawing frequency — but to a greater extent. Lucky for Life, currently drawn on Mondays and Thursdays, will move to a daily draw format on July 19. Drawings will happen at 10:38 p.m. ET. Like with Powerball, the ticket price and odds remain the same.
The CT Lottery has also temporarily limited advance draw purchases in anticipation of that change. Currently, players can only buy one advance play. The normal option to buy up to 26 plays in advance returns Saturday. Players should also note that starting Monday, drawings will no longer be televised.
Players can still check their plays at any lottery retailer, on the CT Lottery website or via the lottery’s free mobile app. Due to these changes, players will have more opportunities to make such inspections starting soon.