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Wondering if I should go back to buying scratchers?

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shyguitar

Hi everyone,

I've mentioned many times how I've cut way back on my lottery spending and have just been playing the draw games like Mass Cash, MM, and Powerball.  When I go to my state lottery website it seems that the people who win 1 million (well it's always less if you take the lump sum) tend to win them on the scratch tickets. There will occasionally be someone who will win 2nd prize on the PB and MM. Since the odds of winning a million are far less than the odds of winning 2nd place in PB or MM I'm now wondering if I should go back to buying scratch tickets.  One of the reasons I had stopped buying scratch tickets was because of the needle in a haystack theory. Since there are thousands of retailers that sell scratch tickets throughout my state what would be the chance of finding that elusive million dollar ticket (and if you take the lump sum it's less)? Saving money by spending less has made me feel much better than I did before I was buying scratch tickets but now I'm just rethinking things. I've tried different things. For awhile I was playing more of the draw game Mass Cash since the odds of winning 100,000 are 1 out of 328,000 and the ticket is a dollar. Well I've never won more than 10 dollars and that was just one time.   When I was playing them in the past I always lost more than I won. For those who play the scratchers do you feel it's worth it?

Tatototman65's avatar - Lottery-009.jpg
Tatototman65

In my opinion the only scratchers worth playing are the 'cash 4 life' type tickets.

Smile

olplugger's avatar - moon2
olplugger
In response to shyguitar

Thanks for the post, shyguitar.  I feel it's worth it to play both....regular lotto tickets and scratcher tickets.  As far as "worth it" to gain more $$ . . . I have my doubts.  I play for fun only.  No matter how you decide to play, the odds against winning are enormous to say the least.  However, it's also true that "somebody" will win if they keep buying tickets.  Perhaps that "somebody" will be the olplugger,  or shyguitar.

Lottery for me is purely a hobby with the potential of some return.  Others may play golf, bowl, hunt, fish, etc. for their hobby.  It's all where you want to put your hobby allowance.  Thanks again for the post.  Very good subject!  Hopefully, others will have some comment on this subject.

BigDMike's avatar - dalll
BigDMike

In my opinion scrathers are the same as slots in a casino.  You have no control whatsoever.  I'd rather have some sort of contol in the outcome.  If you were losing more than winning, what will change?  The tickets won't...

Good "luck"

noise-gate's avatar - images q=tbn:ANd9GcR91HDs4UJhjxO7cmeMQWZ5lB_FOcMLOGicau4V74R45tDgPWrr
noise-gate

If your pocketbook can afford it- why not.In the end its all up to you.
However never live with REGRETS.

Jon D's avatar - calotterylogo
Jon D
In response to BigDMike

...scrathers [sic] are the same as slots in a casino.

This is a common misconception.

Actually, to use the casino analogy, scratch games have more in common with table card games, and traditional lottery number games are more like slots or roulette.

With traditional number/lotto games, you are trying to predict the randomness of the computer or mechanical random number generator. You only have the illusion of control, trying to gain an advantage from randomness. Like a slot machine or roulette table.

Scratch games on the other hand, have more in common with table card games:
- the entire play of pack/deck is predetermined (like baccarat) - check
- minimum pack values create opportunitues for counting and advantage play (like blackjack) - check
- you're competing with other players for the same pot/winnings (like poker) - check
And there are many other elements such as the human factor of reading your opponents,(other players) the clerks, what advice they give, which game to play and how much to play, and when to stop.

There's much more there than most casual observers realize.

But scratch games also have a dark side. you don't pick some numbers and then wait a day or two. You can play fast, REAL fast, and spend a lot of money in a short period of time. Like the dark side of the force: quicker, easier, more seductive.

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shyguitar
In response to Tatototman65

Hi Tatototman65,

In the past I have tried playing the similiar tickets you mentioned . I've tried the 5000 dollar a week for life down to the 500 dollar a week to life ones and never had much luck with those. I love the concepts of those tickets though.

sully16's avatar - sharan
sully16

yes

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KY Floyd
In response to shyguitar

There are hundreds of different games, and I'm sure you can find one that suits yor particular desires.

Do you want a game that offers a near-zero chance to win  $100 million while you lose about 50% of your money? There are two choices.

Do you want a game that offers an extremely small chance to win up to a few million while you lose about 50% of your money? There are dozens of choices.

Do you want a game that offers a very, very small chance to win  up to a few million while you lose about 50% of your money? There are dozens of choices.

Do you want a game that offers a verysmall chance to win up to $100,000  while you lose about 50% of your money? There are dozens of choices.

Have you noticed that the one thing that all lottery games have in common is that they're designed to keep about 50% of your money? Reading your posts I really get the feeling that you think there's some way around that part.

HoLeeKau's avatar - YheaShea
HoLeeKau

KYFloyd, I'd love your technique on how to lose only 50% of my money!  I lose more than that, probably around 80%, especially when I'm playing scratchers.

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shyguitar
In response to olplugger

Hi olplugger,

I think you are smart to play for fun only. I've always been a realistic person who knows the odds are stacked against me but feel it's worth it to take the chance of winning someday over having zero chance by never playing. Good luck to you.

HoLeeKau's avatar - YheaShea
HoLeeKau

"One of the reasons I had stopped buying scratch tickets was because of the needle in a haystack theory. Since there are thousands of retailers that sell scratch tickets throughout my state what would be the chance of finding that elusive million dollar ticket"

 

That's how I think about scratchers, too.  You can buy the winning draw ticket from any terminal in any state that sells it.  Just pick the right numbers, or buy your quick pick at exactly the right moment.

With scratchers, you can only buy the winning ticket if it's already at the store you choose to stop at.  AND on top of that, you still have to be there at the exact right time to get it too.  That thought is pretty discouraging to me, especially since not many of the winners seem to be sold in Boise.  A lot are sold in Eastern Idaho, and other smaller towns.  If I played a scratch game, then find out the big winner went to a Utah player who bought the ticket in Eastern Idaho, I feel like I spent my money for nothing because I never had a chance since the ticket was sitting across the state waiting to be bought.

BigDMike's avatar - dalll
BigDMike
In response to Jon D

Interesting...

Never really saw it from that angle.  Thanks

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shyguitar
In response to KY Floyd

Hi Ky Floyd,

I know that the lottery is out to make money and therefore 99 percent of people are never going to win a lottery jackpot, yet look at all the millions of people who play the lottery.?I'm just trying to make the most of my lottery budget and seeing if other people have had luck playing the scratchers. The odds are so astronomical on the draw games like MM and PB that scratchers might be more worthwhile for some people and wondered what people think.

RedStang's avatar - laughing chimp.gif
RedStang

Just think about all the chocolate truffles and chinese food you could of bought with those losing tickets. That should make it easier to walk by that machine.

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