Powerball and Mega Millions jackpot tops $1.9bn ahead of today’s draw

‘Lottery fever’ continues to spread across the United States as the jackpot prizes stand at staggering heights

Amelia Neath
Monday 25 March 2024 14:11 GMT
Lottery jackpot dreams

The Mega Millions and Powerball jackpots have a combined total of $1.9bn going into this week’s lottery draws, both of which have totals so high they are making history.

The Powerball jackpot stands at an estimated whopping $800m with a cash option lump sum of $384.8m, making it the sixth-largest prize in its history.

The jackpot is “quickly climbing the rankings as one of the game’s largest”, Powerball said in a statement ahead of the draw scheduled for Monday night.

Meanwhile, Mega Millions has surpassed its own name, with a gigantic estimated jackpot total of $1.1bn and a cash option of $525.8m, making it the fifth largest jackpot in Mega Millions history.

The draw for this incredible prize will take place on Tuesday.


The jackpot has not been won in 35 consecutive drawings. The last person to win was a ticket holder in Michigan, who walked away with a prize worth $842.4m on New Year’s Day 2024.

On Saturday’s drawing, five ticket-holders won $1m prizes after matching all five white balls, and 14 tickets also claimed $100,000 prizes.

If you want to be in with a chance of winning a staggering amount of money, tickets for Powerball are being sold across 45 states in the US, most of which cost $2 per play.

Players in Washington, DC, Puerto Rico and the US Virgin Islands can also purchase tickets.

The Powerball estimated jackpot for the next draw stands at $800 million (Getty Images)

If a player chooses, they can add “Power Play”, which, for an extra dollar, multiplies non-jackpot prizes by 2, 3, 4, 5, or even 10 times.

The multiplier is selected randomly before each drawing, but the 10x multiplier is only in play if the jackpot annuity is $150m or less.

According to Powerball, the chances of winning the jackpot are one in 292.2 million, whereas the chances of winning some sort of prize, albeit small, is 1 in 24.9.

If someone wins Powerball’s jackpot on Monday and chooses the annuitised prize of $800m, they will receive one immediate payment, followed by 29 annual payments that will increase by five per cent each year.

Powerball drawings are broadcast live every Monday, Wednesday and Saturday from the Florida Lottery draw studio in Tallahassee.

The largest-ever Powerball jackpot won stands at $2.04bn, which was claimed in November 2022 by a Californian.

This is followed by a huge $1.7bn won, also in California, in October 2023, and $1.5bn that was taken home between three different ticket holders in 2016.

Mega Millions

This is the sixth time in less than six years that the Mega Millions jackpot has topped $1bn.

Mega Millions has now gone 30 drawings without a jackpot win, so the big prize is now estimated at $1.1bn, which could be swept up at the next drawing on Tuesday.

“Lottery fever continues to spread throughout the country,” said Gretchen Corbin, the lead director of the Mega Millions Consortium, also the president and CEO of the Georgia Lottery, in a statement.

“Large jackpots provide entertainment and winnings for our players nationwide while contributing to the beneficiary programs funded by each lottery,” she added.

“We appreciate our players and dedicated retailers, and we encourage everyone to play responsibly.”

On the last drawing, one person in Virginia won $3m after matching five white balls and included the Megaplier, which was 3X on Friday night.

This is the sixth Mega Millions jackpot in less than six years that has topped $1 billion (Copyright 2023 The Associated Press. All rights reserved)

While the jackpot has not been won since 8 December 2023, there have been more than 26.2 million winning tickets across all prize tiers since then.

This includes 43 ticket holders who won second-tier prizes of $1m or more throughout the country.

The largest Mega Millions jackpot was won in Florida in August 2023, standing at $1.602bn.

Following that, the second largest prize taken home was $1.5bn in 2018 in South Carolina, and third place stands at $1.3bn in Maine.

Like the Powerball, tickets cost $2 each and are sold in 45 states, Washington, DC, and the US Virgin Islands.

In most areas, people also have the option to add the “Megaplier” for an extra dollar to multiply their non-jackpot prizes.

Drawings take place at 11pm ET on Tuesdays and Fridays in Atlanta, Georgia.

The odds of winning the jackpot are one in 302,575,350, but you could fare better of winning any Mega Millions prize, which stands at one in 24.

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