Georgia launched its state lottery in November 1992, which rakes in over $1 billion annually. By law, only half of this money goes towards prizes, with the remainder financing state programs. The state’s lottery was originally launched to pump further funding into education.
The Georgia Lottery also has an online iLottery that all Georgia residents meeting certain eligibility criteria can play.
History of Georgia’s lottery
Georgia did not launch its lottery until November 1992– much later than most US states– when Article I, Section II, Paragraph VIII was added to the Georgia State Constitution. This allowed for the creation of a state-managed lottery and was approved via a referendum.
Following this constitutional amendment, the Georgia State Assembly passed the Lottery for Education Act (OCGA 50-27) in 1992, which created the Georgia Lottery Corporation (GLC). The GLC still oversees the Georgia Lottery today.
Since the mid-1990s, Georgia has offered Powerball and Mega Millions tickets; however, the Georgia Lottery was forced to leave the Multi-State Lottery Association (MUSL) several days after it began selling Mega Millions tickets.
On January 31, 2010, after an agreement was reached between the Mega Millions and Powerball groups that enabled both games to be available simultaneously, Georgia was again able to sell both tickets as part of its multistate initiative.
In December 2011, the US Department of Justice released a legal opinion through the Wire Act that wagering outside of sports betting was not within the act’s reach. This distinction enabled states to sell lottery tickets on the internet.
The Georgia Online Lottery became the second internet lottery to launch in the United States. Georgia’s iLottery went live in November 2012 and continues to sell tickets online for its draw games and other instant games, such as Keno and interactive instant scratch-offs.
GA online lottery fact sheet
|Oversight:||Georgia Lottery Corporation Legislative Oversight Committee|
|Available to:||Georgia residents|
The requirements for playing Georgia’s online lottery mirror those of other states in the US.
Potential players must be Georgia residents aged 18 or over. When signing up on Georgia’s online lottery website, players must disclose multiple pieces of personal information including name, date of birth, and address, and they may later need to provide some form of valid identification such as a driver’s license. A prospective player also needs to provide their social security number. This information is used by the GLC to determine whether or not a potential player meets the eligibility criteria.
Unlike some other states, Georgia residents can still participate in the online lottery while outside the state.
Georgia lottery games
There are several online lotteries and instant games exclusive to Georgia and offered via their website.
Instant games include virtual scratch-offs where the player reveals symbols to see he or she won. The price points of these games range from $1 to $30, and although the winnings are generally smaller than other games offer, there is still the opportunity for winnings up to $500,000. There are currently 36 instant games, some of which include:
- Dazzling Diamonds
- Dual Crossword Craze
- Quick Pay
- Lucky 7’s
- 50x The Money
- Star Match
Keno games are included in Georgia’s iLottery and are played every four minutes. Keno is like a hybrid between lottery and bingo, with players choosing up to 20 numbers between one and 80. As numbers are drawn, the players cross off numbers from their Keno cards if they have a match.
Georgia also has its own online lottery draw game known as Georgia Five, which was introduced on August 1, 2010. It is a 5-digit numbers game which has two drawings per day and a jackpot prize of $10,000. To win, players must match all five drawn numbers in order.
Players have six months from the draw date to claim their winnings.
Tickets can be purchased using an iHOPE Discover debit card. This card can be obtained by creating a Georgia Lottery Players Club account and can be topped up using:
- VISA / Mastercard debit cards
- Savings or checking account
Allow up to two weeks for delivery of your iHOPE card.
Prizes up to $5,000 are automatically credited to a player’s iHOPE account, while larger prizes require the player to visit a local Georgia Lottery district office. The card can then be used to pay anywhere a Discover card is accepted or to make ATM withdrawals.
Georgia’s online lottery once had a vast number of multistate games available. Since multistate games are played across the country, their jackpots are much larger than single-state games.
Today, there are three multistate games open to players on the Georgia iLottery website: Mega Millions, Powerball, and Fantasy 5.
Mega Millions and Powerball are available in 44 US states, plus Washington, D.C. and the Virgin Islands. Both games cost $2 to enter (or $3 with either the Megaplier or Power Play multipliers) and have a minimum jackpot of $40 million.
Fantasy 5 is a daily Georgia jackpot lottery with a minimum prize of $125,000; as of this writing, the top prize is $207,000. Players win by matching two, three, four, or five numbers selected from a 1-42 range. The odds are 1:11 and 1:850,668 for scoring the smallest and largest prizes, respectively. Each play costs $1, and for an additional $1 players can activate the Cash Match feature for a chance to win up to five additional cash prizes on each drawing.
The Georgia Online Lottery offers native Android and iOS applications, both of which allow for online ticket purchases.
The customer service team can be reached by:
- Email – [email protected]
- On-site contact form
- Calling 1-800-GA-LUCKY
There’s also an FAQ section, but it doesn’t contain a lot of useful information about the online platform specifically.
Hopefully, a live chat feature will be added soon.
Georgia became the second state to launch its own online lottery in November 2012. Although it got off to something of a false start, it is now one of the largest online lottery markets within the United States and pumps hundreds of millions of dollars into Georgia’s education system each year.
The lottery is available to players who are at least 18 years of age, Georgia residents, and have an SSN. Following the federal act of December 2011, the playing of online lotteries in states with their own state-mandated lotteries became legal.
The Georgia iLottery offers a wide range of lottery-style and instant games, both state and nationwide.