The Kentucky (KY) Lottery launched on April 4, 1989, making over $5 million in sales on its first day. As of June 2018, there were over 50 instant games available on the KY iLottery website. Since 2016, it is legal to buy tickets online, subject to certain restrictions.
Kentucky lottery history
The first legal lottery to be held in Kentucky took place in 1792 as a fundraiser for building a Lexington church.
Wallace G. Wilkinson, later the governor of Kentucky, pushed for the introduction of a state-mandated lottery during his campaign in 1987. After his victory, the Kentucky Legislature gave a state lottery the go-ahead under State Code Section 154A.010.
Since its 1989 launch, the KY Lottery has raised over $4.1 billion in state revenue. The lottery is legally obliged to contribute 35% of total sale dividends back to the state, with proceeds going towards state funds such as the Affordable Housing Trust Fund and the Kentucky Early Childhood Reading Incentive Fund.
It has undergone major expansion since its 1989 inception. Originally launching with two simple scratch-off tickets, it now includes Mega Millions (added to the KY Lottery on January 31, 2010) and Powerball (added on October 13, 2009), in addition to other lotteries and instant games.
KY online lottery fact sheet
|Oversight:||Kentucky Lottery Corporation|
|Available to:||KY residents located in Kentucky|
Playing the Kentucky Online Lottery is legal for qualifying players. Potential players must be:
- Kentucky residents
- Aged 18 or over
- Physically located within the state of Kentucky
Potential players must disclose key information during the registration process, such as date of birth, address, and phone number so that the player’s eligibility can be ascertained.
To confirm this information, all potential players need to provide a valid form of ID to the KY Lottery during registration, such as a passport or driver’s license, as well as the final four digits of their social security number (SSN).
As a way to prevent accounts being registered on behalf of players outside of Kentucky or the United States, the Kentucky iLottery website uses technology that tracks players’ Internet Protocol (IP) addresses and geolocations to ensure they are located within the state. Each time a player logs in or makes a purchase, their IP address is checked.
You can fund your Kentucky lottery iWallet using debit or credit cards such as VISA and Mastercard. The lottery does not guarantee that a particular card type will be accepted. You can also purchase iFunds from a licensed lottery retailer to fund your balance. E-wallet and PayNearMe transactions are not supported at this time.
Note that deposited funds cannot be cashed out; only potential winnings generated from playing the lottery are subject to withdrawal.
You can have funds in your iWallet deposited directly into your bank account. You can also request a withdrawal by check; allow up to 10 business days for delivery.
Kentucky lottery games
The Kentucky Lottery continues to add new games to its overall library as demand from consumers increases exponentially. As of June 2018, there were over 50 different instant and lottery games for those meeting the eligibility criteria to play.
Some of the instant games available include classic scratch-offs, which range in price from $1 to $25, with prizes ranging from $50 all the way into the millions. Other instant games include 5 Card Cash, a quick pick game that costs $2 to play. To win, players need to match the five playing card symbols on their card with the winning hand.
Examples of available instant games include:
- Quick Pay
- Cash Cookout
- VIP Gold
- Mega Cash Speculator
- Gong Xi Fa Cai
- Gold ‘n’ Clovers
All instant games can be tried for free and feature an information page that details the rules and odds of winning specific prizes.
The KY Lottery also features several daily draws with prizes starting at $500 and various Keno games, a bingo-style lottery game. In Keno games, numbers are crossed off a player’s card as they are drawn. The more numbers a player matches, the higher the prize.
Keno tickets range from $1 and $20 per play and offer prizes that top out at $2 million. With the ability to add on a Keno multiplier for 25 cents, players can win prizes of $500,000 or more.
Options for players are not just restricted to Kentucky-exclusive games. In addition to the instant-win and lottery games, there are other multistate options that cover most of the United States. There are three different multistate draw games available for those who qualify to play the Kentucky online lottery: Mega Millions, Powerball, and Lucky for Life.
Mega Millions was the first multistate game offered by the KY Lottery, on January 31, 2010. Each play costs $2 ($3 with a Megaplier), and there is a range of winnings and prizes offered, including the $40 million jackpot. There are two draws per week, which take place at 10:00 p.m. on Tuesdays and Fridays.
Powerball is the second multistate game available. Each ticket costs $2 ($3 with a Power Play multiplier), and the jackpot starts at $40 million with draws on Wednesdays and Saturdays.
Mega Millions and Powerball include 44 US States, the Virgin Islands, and Washington, D.C.
The final multistate game available through the KY Lottery is Lucky for Life, which gives players the chance to win prizes that last a lifetime. The top prize is $1,000 a day for life, and the second prize is $25,000 a year for life. This game is offered throughout 22 states, plus Washington, D.C.
A Kentucky online lottery app is available for Android and iOS devices. The former version can be downloaded from the official lottery website, and the latter is available in the App Store and requires iOS version 7.0 or higher. Both apps can be used to purchase lottery tickets.
The lottery’s online support team can be reached by:
- Phone – 877-789-4532
- Email – [email protected]
- On-site contact form
Most emails receive a response in 24-48 hours.
There’s also a useful FAQ section that answers questions related to online account creation, instant game rules, and banking.
The Kentucky Lottery has come a long way since its launch in 1989 with only two scratch-off games.
It is legal to play the KY Lottery online; however, players must meet certain eligibility criteria. Prospective players must be legal state residents, aged 18 or over, and be physically located within Kentucky.
There is a strict verification process which requires the disclosure of a valid form of ID and the final four digits of a player’s social security number. This ensures only eligible players get onto the platform.
The KY Lottery’s games are regularly updated and include both Kentucky-specific and multistate lottery draws, instant games, and scratch-offs. On the official website, there is a comprehensive catalog of games that can be explored for further information.