DC Online Lottery Overview

Washington DC has a dedicated online lottery platform that allows residents to enjoy draw games and e-Instants. On this page, read our full breakdown of the DCiLottery platform, available games, and much more.

Can you play the DC Lottery online?

Yes, you can play the DC Lottery online.

It’s available on desktops via browser and in the DCiLottery app for iOS and Android devices. Powerball, Mega Millions, other draw games, and e-Instants are all available for online play in the District. The region first started offering online lottery games in 2012. In 2020, the lottery unveiled its dedicated DCiLottery platform.

Along with Washington DC, 12 states offer some sort of state-run online lottery purchases.

Main facts to know about the DCiLottery – June 2024

Before we dive into the details, it helps to know a few key facts about the DC online lottery.

Is there an online lottery in Washington DC?Yes
When did it launch its online lottery?2012 (DCiLottery platform launched 2020)
How can you play the DC Lottery online?Website, DCiLottery app
What types of games can you play?Powerball, Mega Millions, draw games, e-Instants
Accepted payment and withdrawal methodsPayPal, credit, debit, Skrill, ACH
Legal age to play18 or above
Who regulates the DCiLottery?The Office of Lottery and Gaming (OLG)

Our experience playing the DC Lottery online

We spent a bunch of time with the DC online lottery platform to give you a sense of what works and what doesn’t. Thankfully, most of our takeaways are positive. The DCiLottery is polished and streamlined, making gameplay simple and easy.

Let’s dig deeper below.

The aesthetic is gorgeous, and we love the live chat help option

One of the first things we notice in an online lottery is its look and feel. How easy is the site to navigate? Is it easy on the eyes? Does everything work as expected? Those are the important questions when testing online lotteries, and DCiLottery passes with flying colors.

DCiLottery’s aesthetic is gorgeous, and we don’t use that term lightly. It’s a gentle melding of blue, red, and purple that is genuinely nice to behold.

But it’s not all visual wonders. The DCiLottery is also fully functional on both mobile devices and desktop computers. The menus are intuitive and responsive. Clicking or tapping a button opens the expected option, and everything loads swiftly.

We’re also huge fans of customer service live chat, and the DC online lottery provides that option. Just tap the blue chat bubble icon in the lower portion of the screen (on the mobile site or mobile app) and you’ll receive help soon. When we tried, we heard from a real human agent within one minute.

Website or app?

Ah, the age-old question: should I play iLottery games on a mobile browser or app?

OK, maybe it’s not the age-old question, but it’s still important. And the answer, at least for DC players, is that either one works.

The DC Lottery app is well-designed and super functional. Everything works without a hitch. The only small downside of mobile play is game load time, which we found was slightly slower than on desktop. Keep in mind that we played with a mobile connection for some of our reviews, which could have contributed to the slight slowdown. Playing via Wi-Fi on a phone didn’t yield a noticeable difference from desktop speed.

The app and site experiences are, for the most part, identical, so it comes down to your preference as a player. We tend to recommend the app wherever possible just because buying a lottery ticket from an app feels really fun, and the e-Instants work well on iPhones or Androids.

The main differences between the site and the app come down to navigation.

  • On the site, you can access the main menu in the upper left. It includes sections on games, winning numbers, and a ticket checker.
  • On the app, the main menu has more options (including “Bonuses & Promotions,” “Help Center,” and “Find A Retailer”), and it also has a bottom toolbar on the home screen with quick-access buttons for “Games,” “Winning Numbers,” “Promos,” “Scan Ticket,” and “My Plays.”

Screenshot of the home screen of the DC online lottery app for PlayiLottery review

Available games

The two primary game types available at the DC Lottery online are e-Instants and draw games.

The e-Instants function like scratch-offs in some ways. You play once, and you know whether you’ve won right away. Some e-Instants play like slots, where you pay for a spin and hope for a win. The prices for e-Instants start as low as $0.10 per play and can go up to $50 per play. Many of the DC online lottery’s e-Instants have jackpots that steadily rise until they hit.

Then, you have draw games, which include the big ones—Powerball and Mega Millions—and slightly smaller games like Lucky For Life, DC 5, and more. In these games, you pick your numbers and wait for the drawing to occur. Then, you check your numbers to see if you won.

The sheer variety and quantity of games make DCiLottery one of the best online lottery sites in any market.

Payment options and functionality

“Smooth, seamless payments with plenty of options” is the best description we can give for the DC Lottery’s online deposits and withdrawals. Here are the methods.

  • Skrill
  • PayPal
  • Credit
  • Debit
  • ACH e-Check

The minimum deposit at the DC Lottery is $10.

The variety of methods here is excellent, and we love to see trusted methods like PayPal, Skrill, and ACH alongside credit and debit cards. To be clear, all of those methods are trusted and reputable, but e-wallets and ACH bring an extra benefit because they are simple, secure, and have high transactional success rates. We will explore payments and withdrawals in more detail further down in this review.

Promotions

The DC online lottery offers plenty of promotions for new and existing players. It’s also one of the best US markets for a steady stream of online lottery promos and bonuses.

When you first create your DCiLottery account, you can get a 100% deposit match up to $250. Say you sign up and deposit $100 into your account. You’ll get an additional $100 to use for iLottery games. To get the full bonus, you’d have to deposit $250 the first time you fund your account. You can deposit less if you wish, and you’ll get a match equal to your deposit.

Beyond the welcome bonus, the DCiLottery has plenty of other promotions. Visit the “Promos” section of the app (accessible via the bottom toolbar or the main menu, where it’s actually called “Bonuses & Promotions”) for the latest. Typically, you can find promos for the latest game to launch in DC. During this writing, there was a $5 bonus credit offer for Boogie Opera, the lottery’s latest e-Instant.

Screenshot of the promotions page of the DC Lottery online for PlayiLottery review

Pros and cons of the DCiLottery

Pros

  • Excellent promos, including a first deposit match up to $250
  • Great game selection: draw games and e-Instants
  • Amazing app and desktop interface

Cons

  • The minimum deposit is $10 (it would be nice if it was lower)
  • No online banking deposits
  • No Fast Play online

How to buy DC Lottery tickets online

The steps to buy online lottery tickets in the District are simple. The whole process took us about five minutes. We played DC 5 for this example, but all draw games share a similar process.

Follow these steps.

1

Access the DCiLottery.

Download the DCiLottery app or head to the website.

2

Create your account.

On the site, tap the red door icon in the upper right and tap “REGISTER” on the next screen. On the app, tap “LOGIN” in the upper right and then select “REGISTER” on the next screen. From there, you’ll proceed through a quick registration process (which took us about two minutes).

3

Make a deposit.

We recommend doing this first so that you don’t have to add money after picking your games/numbers.

4

Find the game you want to play.

On the site, access the main menu in the upper left, open the “Games” dropdown menu, and pick the draw game for which you’d like to purchase tickets. Then, tap “PLAY NOW.”

On the app, tap “Games” in the bottom toolbar and then select the red “Draw Games” square on the next screen. From there, scroll down to pick your game and tap “PLAY NOW.”

Screenshot of games control menu in the DCiLottery app for PlayiLottery review

 

 

5

Select your numbers.

Both the site and app will take you to the same game page. At the top, you’ll see the most recent winning numbers and the time of the next drawing. Then, you can either select the “PICK YOUR NUMBERS” tab to select your numbers manually, or you can tap the “QUICK PICKS” tab, which will present you with a series of options for randomly chosen plays.

On the app, you can shake your phone to pick random numbers. That’s cool.

You can also tap “STATISTICS” to see which of your numbers are hot and which are cold. We really love this feature and think it’s easy to use and unique in the online lottery landscape.

Screenshot of statistics for DC 5 numbers on the DCiLottery for PlayiLottery review

6

Finalize the details of your selection.

Scroll down to choose your play type (straights, box, front pair, etc.), play amount, Advance Play options (you can buy tickets for Thursday drawings on a Sunday, for instance), drawing times (day, evening, or both), and number of days you’d like to purchase tickets (can be up to seven days).

Screenshot of the different ticket purchase options on the DCiLottery DC 5 for PlayiLottery review

 

7

Complete your purchase.

Tap “ADD TO CART” if you want to keep shopping, or you can complete your purchase.

Another option? Buying tickets with Jackpocket

Jackpocket is also available in Washington DC. This courier service lets you purchase tickets online, directs a person to get your physical ticket, and, if you win, the app pays you or sends you your winning ticket.

How to play Powerball in Washington DC

Here’s how to play Powerball at the DCiLottery:

  1. On the site, tap “Games” within the main menu and then tap “PLAY NOW” next to Powerball. On the app, select “Games” from the bottom toolbar and then tap “Draw Games” on the next screen. Scroll down to find Powerball. Tap “PLAY NOW.”
  2. If desired, use Quick Pick to purchase up to five plays at once, with or without Power Play (priced in the drop-down menu.
  3. Otherwise, select “Play Now.”
  4. Choose your numbers for up to five plays at a time. You can also do Quick Pick from here if you’d like.
  5. Use the slider to enter multiple drawings, if desired.
  6. Check the box to add Power Play to each entry for $1 apiece (optional).
  7. Add to favorites if you want to save your numbers for future drawings.
  8. Either add to the cart and go add more games before checking out or click “Play Now” to finish up.
  9. Wait for the app or site to confirm your purchase.

How to play Mega Millions in Washington DC

The Mega Millions process is similar to the Powerball purchase steps:

  1. Tap “Games” within the site’s main menu and then select “PLAY NOW” next to Mega Millions. App users will want to tap “Games” in the bottom toolbar and select “Draw Games” on the next screen. Scroll down to find Mega Millions. Tap “PLAY NOW.”
  2. Use Quick Pick to purchase up to five tickets with or without Megaplier, or:
  3. Select “Play now” to start picking your numbers.
  4. Using Quick Pick or manual selection, pick your numbers. You can add up to five lines in a single Mega Millions purchase.
  5. Use the sliding menu to enter multiple consecutive drawings if you wish.
  6. If you’d like to add Megaplier ($1 more per entry) or Just The Jackpot ($3 more per play), you can do so by clicking the boxes.
  7. Add to favorites if you want to save your picks and then either add to your cart or “Play Now” to finish.
  8. Await confirmation and check back after the next drawing.

DC Lottery - Mega Millions

Which DC Lottery games are available online?

Below, we detail the game library for online lottery players in DC.

e-Instants

The digital cousins of scratch-off tickets, e-Instants are lottery games that resolve within a few seconds. They vary widely in prizes and gameplay. DCiLottery offers dozens of them, starting from $0.10 per play and ranging up to $50 per play. Instant win games are a great entry point for first-time online lottery players because of the quick gratification and interesting gameplay hooks. Several also feature progressive jackpots, where the grand prize continues to grow until a player wins it.

  • Best instant win game: Boogie Opera takes the cake here. It’s the newest DCiLottery instant game, boasting a cool theme and a top prize of $500,000. The minimum play is $1, and the max is $50. We’ve included a video of us trying the demo.

Powerball, Mega Millions

Powerball and Mega Millions are the two biggest multi-state draw games. You can play them online in the District. We have more detailed instructions on how in the section above.

Other draw games

There are plenty of other draw games outside of Powerball and Mega Millions. They range from the relatively small (Pick 3, with a max prize of $500) to the massive jackpots (Lucky For Life has a top prize of $1,000 per day for life). Other online draw games include DC 3, DC 4, DC 5, and Race2Riches.

  • Best draw game: Lucky For Life is our top pick, thanks to its unique prize structure.

Keno online

In Washington DC, online keno games can be found in the e-Instant section. There are three titles available:

  • Lucky DC Keno
  • Stars & Stripes Keno
  • 21x Keno

Games not available at the DCiLottery

A few notable game types are not available online in DC.

DC Fast Play

Fast Play games aren’t offered online, though you can find pertinent information about them within the DCiLottery app or on the website. Check out our full guide to Fast Cash lottery games if you’d like to learn more.

DC Scratchers

Scratch-off games, or scratchers, are physical by their very nature. You can’t play them online; they are available only from retail sellers. Even so, the DC online lottery has information about them, such as the latest games and prices.

DC Keno

DC has a few keno games available only for retail play. You can enjoy these games at a participating lottery vendor.

Retail-only draw games

Two draw games in DC are available only from retail sellers: DC 2 and The Lucky One. However, if you want to play DC 2 online, you can use Jackpocket.

DC Tap-N-Play

Tap-N-Play games are available only via specific terminals at lottery vendors or specific partners, so you must be on-site at a location with a machine if you want to play them.

Latest DC Lottery industry news

Draw Games Helping Arizona Lottery FY24 Sales Outperform FY23

June 24, 2024 | By: Drew Ellis

The Arizona Lottery is outpacing last year's sales thanks to improved numbers across the board for its draw games.

TheLotter Launches In New York, Becoming Lottery Courier’s Fifth State

June 24, 2024 | By: Drew Ellis

This weekend, theLotter announced that it received a license to operate in New York, making it the fourth lottery courier to be welcomed into the state.

Florida Lottery Receives Additional $10.6 Million In Latest State Budget

June 21, 2024 | By: Nathan Frederick

The Florida Lottery is looking at additional funding, as Gov. Ron DeSantis' Focus on Florida’s Future state budget provides a boost of $10.6 million.

Deposit and withdrawal options

The DC Lottery has a few ways for online players to deposit and withdraw funds.

Deposit methods

Deposit methodMinimum deposit
PayPal 💲$10
Skrill 💰$10
ACH e-Check ➡️$10
Credit/debit 💳$10

These methods are specific to Washington DC’s lottery. Other jurisdictions have different methods available, though there may be some overlap or similar options.

Withdrawal options

You can withdraw from the DC online lottery using the same methods that are offered for deposits. The one thing to know is that you can’t withdraw your deposits. In other words, you can’t deposit $10 and then immediately withdraw it. Instead, you’d have to use that $10 to play games. Any winnings you receive are eligible for withdrawal.

The maximum withdrawal is $4,999.99.

How to claim online lottery winnings in Washington DC

Online lottery winnings up to $4,999.99 will automatically arrive in your DCiLottery account, and you can withdraw them using the methods described above.

Draw game claims

Prizes of $5,000 or above must be collected from the DC Lottery Prize Center. You need to make an appointment by calling 202-645-9000. The hours are Monday through Friday, 8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Bring the following things with you:

  • Copy of your government-issued photo ID
  • Copy of your Social Security Card
  • The 30-digit Voucher ID corresponding with your win, presented on paper (i.e., printed out)

The Voucher ID can be found on your “Gaming History” page from the app or website.

e-Instant claims

Prizes from e-Instants up to $9,999.99 are funneled directly into your account to be withdrawn. The transactional withdrawal limit is $4,999.99, so you’ll have to do it in batches if you win $5,000 or more.

Meanwhile, e-Instant prizes of $10,000 or more must be claimed at the DC Lottery Prize Center. Make an appointment by calling 202-645-9000 and bring along the following:

  • A copy of a government-issued photo ID
  • Copy of your Social Security Card
  • The 36-character alphanumeric Voucher ID corresponding to your win (printed out)

You can save time by completing a claim form online ahead of time to bring to your appointment.

Playing the DC Lottery online vs. in person

ComparisonOnlineRetail
Powerball✔️✔️
Mega Millions✔️✔️
Keno✔️ (certain games)✔️ (certain games)
Tap-N-Play✔️
Play on mobile✔️
18+✔️✔️
The Lucky One✔️

Where can I buy a lottery ticket in Washington DC?

Not feeling an online lottery ticket? No trouble at all. You can play at various retail locations across the District. There are more than 300 participating vendors, including:

  • Liquor stores
  • Convenience stores
  • Grocery stores
  • 7-Elevens
  • Coffee shops
  • Check cashing locations
  • Gas station

The DC Lottery offers its find-a-retailer tool to help you locate the retail vendor closest to you.

Checking lottery tickets online or via the DCiLottery app

The DCiLottery website has a “WINNING NUMBERS” option in the main menu. That page shows you the latest results, and you can filter your search by game and date. There is also a “TICKET CHECKER” option in the main menu. This takes you to a screen where you can enter your ticket ID and tap “CHECK MY NUMBERS” to see if you’ve got a winner.

On the app, you can tap “SCAN TICKET” in the bottom toolbar to check your tickets with a mobile device’s camera. Grant the app access to use your camera, and you can get started.

Screenshot of the ticket scanner on the DC iLottery app for PlayiLottery review

You can also access these same “WINNING NUMBERS” and “TICKET CHECKER” web pages via the app’s bottom toolbar and main menu.

Responsible gaming in Washington DC

The DC Lottery does a great job promoting responsible play. After all, the lottery is a form of gambling, so it’s important to understand the resources available to you.

One of the primary programs in place to protect gamblers is the self-exclusion list. You can submit an application to self-exclude, which would prevent future lottery purchases. The DCiLottery has online forms available for such applications.

There are also support groups, both in person and online, available nationwide, including in the District:

  • Gamblers Anonymous: in-person meetings for problem gambling support.
  • Gam-Anon: self-help support for spouses, family members, and loved ones of problem gamblers.
  • GamTalk: an online support community with various forums and additional resources for problem gamblers.

Finally, there’s the National Council on Problem Gambling helpline, which offers confidential 24/7 assistance. Call or text 1-800-426-2537. You can also reach out via chat from the NCPG website.

If you think you need assistance, don’t hesitate to reach out or find help. You can also access our responsible gaming page for more information.

DCiLottery FAQ

What is the difference between the DC Lottery and the DCiLottery?

The DC Lottery is the overarching organization that oversees and offers all lottery games within Washington DC. The DCiLottery is the specific platform from the DC Lottery that offers online games. The DCiLottery is available via mobile app, mobile browser, or desktop devices.

What is the minimum age for playing the lottery in Washington DC?

You must be 18 or older to participate in the online lottery in the District. Your age and identity will be confirmed during the sign-up process, which requires you to provide your identification details.

Is there a DCiLottery app?

Yes. The DCiLottery app is available for iOS and Android devices. Simply download it like you would with any other app and open it to get started. The app lets you play draw games such as Powerball, Mega Millions, and Lucky For Life. You can also enjoy the DCiLottery’s expansive library of e-Instant games.

Do I have to pay taxes on DC Lottery winnings?

Yes. All lottery winnings are considered income for tax purposes. You will have to pay taxes on winnings in accordance with federal, DC, state, and local laws. Winnings exceeding certain thresholds may result in taxes being automatically withheld by the lottery.

Can I play Powerball online in DC?

Yes, you can use Quick Pick to make things simple or pick numbers manually. You can also check the most recent drawing results in the DCiLottery app or website.

Can I play Mega Millions online in DC?

Yes. Mega Millions tickets are offered online via the DCiLottery app or website.

About the Author

Cole Rush

Cole Rush

Contributor
Cole Rush is a contributor for PlayiLottery who spent six years working at Scientific Games, one of the world's leading lottery operators. He writes for a handful of Catena Media sites, covering online lottery, iGaming, sports betting, and more. A prolific writer in the US gaming market, Cole also has bylines at iGaming Business, ICE 365, and IGB North America. You can email him at [email protected].
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