How to Win the Lottery: Strategies to Improve Your Odds

By Milo Cruz
Last Updated: October 25, 2019

How to Win the Lottery

Let's face it, when it comes to the lottery, your biggest enemy is the math behind the game. Statistically, you'd have a better shot at dating a supermodel than taking home a jackpot. That's just the way lotteries are designed.

So the question is – if the game boils down to just pure, dumb luck – are there any real strategies that will help you improve your chances?

The answer is yes! Although incredibly hard to beat, the game is basically just a big numbers game. So if you're smart about how you play, you could actually use that to your advantage.

In this article, we'll go over some real, mathematically-sound ways of improving your odds of winning any lottery.

Real Ways to Increase Your Chances of Winning the Lottery

  1. Buy more tickets: Okay, so this is pretty obvious – more tickets equals more chances to win. But did you know that someone took this basic strategy to the next level and managed to win the lottery a total of 14 times? Well that's exactly what Stefan Mandel did around the 1970s and 80s. His rather elegant strategy was to purchase all the possible lottery combinations. There's a bit more to it than that, but in the end, it paid off big time.
  2. Play regularly: Another easy way to ensure better odds – make sure to play often. A lot of lotteries and third-party agents let you purchase subscriptions to their games, so you'll never miss out on a draw.
  3. Join a syndicate: Also known as group play, lottery syndicates provide an easy way of boosting your chances. It's essentially pooling resources in order to buy more tickets.
  4. Choose games with better odds: Now here's a strategy that requires a bit more effort on your part. You'll probably have to do some research on the games you have access to, and then compare a bunch of data to find out which is the best game for you. You want to look at the cost of each play in relation to the potential payoff, so it's essentially risk assessment. Generally speaking however, we recommend you go for games with plenty of prize tiers. That's an easy indicator that your overall odds of winning any prize aren't too bad. Also, feel free to use our very own lottery odds calculator to get you started.
  5. Enable bonus game modes: Some lotteries have optional features that give you additional chances of winning. These usually come in the form of bonus draws, wherein your chosen numbers are played again for multiple chances of winning. These game modes are almost always paid for, though, so exercise a bid of caution and don't go overboard.
  6. Enter second chance drawings: On the other hand, second chance drawings are typically free to enter. All you have to do is submit your non-winning tickets by mail and you get another shot at winning prizes. You cane ven do this online for some lotteries, so it's super convenient.

Other Tips to Keep in Mind

While finding ways to better your odds is a definite strategy, there's more to playing smart than just that. Here are a few other important things you should practice when playing the lottery:

  1. Always remember to check results: There just might be nothing worse than winning the lottery and not even knowing. Remember, almost all lotteries have a deadline for claiming prizes. If you miss out on the results, that window of time might pass you by. Also remember to keep your tickets organized, so they're easier to check. If your lottery supports an app, this might help in keeping things much more manageable especially if you're an avid player.
  2. Don't pick common number combinations: So technically, this tip doesn't really increase your chances of winning, but it could help prevent you from having to share a prize with other winners. Stay away from dates
  3. Opt for Quick Pick: It just makes things more efficient, especially when you play a lot. Besides, selecting your own numbers doesn't actually improve your chances, anyway.

There's a bunch of other ways to improve your lottery game. Check out our lottery strategies page for more tips and good practices you can try.

And on a final note, please remember that the smartest way to play the lottery is to treat it like a game, and not a financial investment. Winning is never guaranteed, so even though you might have plenty of spending power to buy tickets, the truth is that the costs might never be recovered.

So while the only real strategies we listed above can be summed up as “play as much as you can,” we don't recommend you spending all your hard-earned cash on playing these games. Set a budget if you must, make sure what you're spending is disposable, and if you might suspect you have a gambling addiction, seek help.

Good luck and play responsibly!