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Lotto Game Changes Bring Better Odds and More Million Dollar Jackpot Prizes

March 20, 2021

CHICAGO—The Illinois Lottery today announced game enhancements to the local game, Lotto, giving players better odds of winning and creating more millionaires in Illinois.

Two great game enhancements for Lotto will improve the experience for players.  Firstly, following the regular Lotto draw, every ticket for that draw will automatically be entered into two subsequent draws, giving players two additional chances to win a prize of $1 million.  Plus, the numbers that players can choose from will reduce from 52 to 50, improving the odds for players to win across all prize tiers.

All three Lotto drawings will occur sequentially, and the results will be posted online and available in-store following each drawing.  The game enhancements for Lotto go into effect overnight on Monday, March 29 and the first drawing featuring these enhancements will be Thursday, April 1.

“We’re always looking for ways to improve the player experience at all levels,” said Illinois Lottery Acting Director Harold Mays. “The changes to the Lotto game will increase the odds of winning and will give our players more chances to become a millionaire.”

Lotto is an Illinois-only game and will still be played the same way with drawings on Monday, Thursday and Saturday.  Players select six numbers or select Quick Pick to be in the draw. Tickets that match all six numbers win the jackpot.  To multiply non-jackpot winnings, players will still have the option to add Extra Shot® to their Lotto ticket purchase. The Lotto jackpot starts at $2 million and grows between drawings until it’s won, giving players the chance to win a multi-million dollar jackpot three times a week.

To support the improved player experience, the price per line of Lotto will increase from $1 to $2.

Over the past decade, more than $650 million in Lotto prizes have been won by Illinois players, including 51 prizes of $1 million or more. The top three Lotto prizes since 2011 are:

Prize Rank

Prize Amount

Winning Retailer



Circle K

471 Nelson Rd, New Lenox 




2 N. Elmhurst Rd, Prospect Heights




201 E. Bidwell, Taylorville

The Illinois Lottery exists to generate essential funding to support K-12 education and good causes across the State of Illinois. Playing games like Lotto gives players a chance to dream big while supporting communities across Illinois. Players raise an average of $14 million every week to fund public schools and other good causes.  During the first six months of the fiscal year, to the end of December 2020, lottery players won over $1 billion in prizes, and the Illinois Lottery generated estimated proceeds to the State of $337 million.

For more information or to buy tickets online, please visit or download the Illinois Lottery app on your smartphone.


About the Illinois Lottery:

Founded in 1974, the Illinois Lottery has contributed over $21 billion (since 1985) to the state’s Common School Fund to assist K-12 public schools, as well as hundreds of millions of dollars to the Capital Projects Fund and to special causes like homelessness prevention, Illinois Veterans services, the fight against breast cancer, MS research, Special Olympics, police memorials and assistance for people living with HIV/AIDS. In addition to playing in-store, the Illinois Lottery offers online and mobile play for all draw-based Illinois Lottery games at Players must be at least 18 years old.