“One ball could change it all” has become well known in Australian households as the Powerball catch phrase. Following its emergence around the nation in 1996, Aussie punters everywhere select their numbers in the hopes to win millions of dollars – but you will need more than just one ball.
What is Powerball?
American Powerball took the world by storm as it gave millions the chance to win millions – and now billions with a record of almost $1.6 billion won across three US states in 2016. Australians couldn’t participate as you must be an American citizen – there are ways around this now as detailed below – which saw the introduction of the Australian Powerball in 1996.
Powerball is run by the Tatts Group with state subsidiaries operating the lottery. This includes The Lott (formerly NSW Lotteries) in New South Wales and Australian Capital Territory; Tatts in Victoria, Tasmania, Northern Territory, and International; Golden Casket in Queensland; and SA Lotteries in South Australia under one banner.
The difference between the American and Australian Powerball is the US version only needs a matching Powerball with 39 Powerballs in play, while Australians need at least three matching numbers including the Powerball. American players also receive their prize over the year and are required to pay taxes, whereas Australians receive a lump sum tax free.
Powerball takes places every Thursday night in Australia with a guaranteed minimum Division 1 prize pool of $3 million. There’s eight Division prizes, which changed from seven in 2013.
How to play Australian Powerball
Playing Australian Powerball is quite easy. There’s two barrels of numbers, the first with 40 balls each numbered from one to 40 inclusive, and the second with 20 balls numbered from one to 20 inclusive.
The first barrel sees the six winning numbers drawn, while the second sees one number, which is the Powerball.
Players can head into their local newsagent to purchase tickets or head online and create an account at OzLotteries.com or Lottoland.com. Then you can pick your numbers manually or use QuickPick which we detail below, and add to your cart. Check out using your preferred payment method including credit or debit cards.
The minimum amount of games you can play is four, and the minimum cost is $3.70. You can play up to 50 games which is $46.65 on one ticket.
You need to get your entries in by 7pm AEST/8pm AEDT on Thursdays, with the draw taking place an hour and a half later.
There’s also additional features when purchasing your ticket you can take advantage of.
Tatts offer players the chance to QuickPick their numbers by clicking a button to allow random number generator software to pick the numbers.
You can make QuickPicks on the following games;
- 6 game QuickPick – Six games
- MINI QuickPick – 10 games
- REGULAR QuickPick – 12 games
- SUPER QuickPick – 18 games
- MEGA QuickPick – 24 games
- JUMBO QuickPick – 36 games
- MAXI QuickPick – 50 games
This is a unique feature where you can pay extra to be guaranteed the winning Powerball number. This means to win the huge Division 1 prize you only need to get the first six numbers – the Powerball is certain.
You can pick from PowerHit 20 which guarantees you the Powerball on one game, or pick PowerHit 40 which guarantees you the Powerball on two.
The total price for PowerHit 20 is $18.60, while PowerHit 40 costs $37.20, both including the six numbers game.
A System Entry allows you to play more numbers to increase your chances at winning. Since you need all six winning numbers and a regular game only allows you to pick six numbers, your odds aren’t great. You can increase them – not by much – by playing a System 9 Entry, for example, where you can pick from nine numbers.
You can pick from as little as seven numbers with System 7 and up to as many as 20 with System 20. The minimum cost for System 7 is $6.50, while the maximum cost with System 20 is a whopping $36,010.
You can also combine System Entries with PowerHits with System 7 to System 15 entries available.
There’s also multi-week entries where you can play the same numbers from two to 10 weeks at a time. You don’t have to log on each time and purchase your favourite numbers, or head to a local agent. It’s also a good idea if you think you will forget to put in your numbers.
How to win Powerball
To win the Powerball you only need two winning numbers and the Powerball. But this won’t win you much since this is Division 8 and there can be many winners. To win the millions you need all six numbers to match and the Powerball in the one game. The six numbers can be in any order but remember you may not win the full prize if other lucky players have the same winning numbers too. In this case, the prize will be split between the winners.
Division 2 requires six winning numbers without the Powerball, Division 3 requires five winning numbers with the Powerball, Division 4 requires five winning numbers, Division 5 requires four winning numbers with the Powerball, Division 6 requires three winning numbers with the Powerball, and Division 7 requires four winning numbers.
The odds of winning each division is;
- Division 1 – Odds based on one game: 76,767,600:1 – Odds based on 12 games: 6,397,300:1
- Division 2 – Odds based on one game: 4,040,400:1– Odds based on 12 games: 336,700:1
- Division 3 – Odds based on one game: 376,312:1– Odds based on 12 games: 31,360:1
- Division 4 – Odds based on one game: 19,806:1– Odds based on 12 games: 1,651:1
- Division 5 – Odds based on one game: 9,123:1– Odds based on 12 games: 761:1
- Division 6 – Odds based on one game: 641:1– Odds based on 12 games: 54:1
- Division 7 – Odds based on one game: 480:1– Odds based on 12 games: 40:1
- Division 8 – Odds based on one game: 110:1– Odds based on 12 games: 10:1
Lucky Powerball numbers
Many hopeful Powerball players believe there are strategies you can use to increase your chances of winning Powerball, but like all lottery games it’s important to remember that every single result in Powerball is based entirely on luck and there’s nothing a player can do to influence the outcome of a game. In saying that, there’s absolutely no harm in picking numbers that you personally deem to be lucky, and picking your own lucky numbers can make the game a lot more enjoyable. If you’re looking for some inspiration, check out the lucky numbers according to Chinese numerology or the superstitions surrounding lucky numbers.
What about International Powerball draws?
While Australian players can’t participate the same way in the international Powerball draws, there is a way to win the money on offer. This includes the huge sum the US Powerball reaches. LottoLand allows players to purchase tickets into international lotteries. It’s important to understand you aren’t buying tickets into the draws – customers are placing a bet on the outcome of the draws and if you win it is covered by insurance so Lottoland collects and pays you.