How to Play Mega Millions

Players are required to select five main numbers from 1 to 70 and one Mega Ball number from a separate pool of 1 to 25. If a player matches all six numbers drawn, they win the jackpot. If there are no jackpot winners, the top prize rolls over to the following drawing. The Mega Millions jackpot starts at $40 million and increases each time there is a rollover. As there is no jackpot cap, jackpots have the ability to roll into hundreds of millions of dollars.


In all participating states except California, players can boost the value of any non-jackpot prize winnings by choosing a supplementary game known as the Megaplier. The price of the Megaplier is an additional $1. Have a look at the various Megaplier prizes offered and the odds of a Megaplier number being drawn, by visiting the dedicated page.

Just the Jackpot

Just the Jackpot was introduced in October 2017. The option is offered to players in most participating states, except for New Hampshire. Just the Jackpot gives you the chance to play for the jackpot prize only. If you choose the Just the Jackpot wager, you will be given two sets of Mega Millions numbers for the price of $3 and you will not be eligible to win prizes in any of the other prize tiers.

To enter, simply visit your local authorized retailer and pick up a play slip. In Kansas and Texas, you can choose your own numbers. However, in other states, your numbers are generated by the lottery terminal. You can find out more by contacting your local lottery office.

What Happens if you win the Jackpot?

The winner can choose between the full jackpot value paid out over 29 years or a reduced lump-sum payment. Prizes must be claimed within 180 days or one year from the date of the drawing (depending on the state). You can learn more about how to claim a Mega Millions prize and the length of time that you have to claim your winnings on the How to Claim page.

In addition to the jackpot, Mega Millions offers players the chance to win prizes in eight other prize tiers. The prizes range from $2 to $1 million. You can view the prizes available here.

Drawing Schedule

Draws are held in Atlanta, Georgia every Tuesday and Friday at 23.00 EST. Ticket sales close at least an hour prior to the draw, but exact cut-off times vary from state to state, so players are advised to check with their own state lottery provider.

Where to Buy Mega Millions Tickets

Mega Millions is played across multiple US states and jurisdictions. Tickets are sold in participating retail outlets, alongside those for each states’ own games. Players must be at least 18-years-old to enter Mega Millions in most participating jurisdictions. In Nebraska, you must be 19-years-old, and in Arizona, Iowa and Louisiana, you must be 21-years-old.