Michigan Lottery Offering Billion-Dollar Prize. Yes, With a B.

Posted on July 5, 2017
[toc]The Michigan Lottery may have officially jumped the shark with its newly announced, Willy Wonka-themed, $10 Golden Ticket instant win game.

Golden Ticket is a standard scratch-off ticket that will award a non-standard grand prize through a second-chance drawing worth up to… ONE BILLION DOLLARS.

The Golden Ticket game debuts on July 3, and is available for purchase at all 11,000 Michigan Lottery retail locations.

How Golden Ticket works

In addition to the typical instant win prizes (in this case $10 – $1,000,000) here’s how the Golden Ticket game works, per the Michigan Lottery website:

“… each $10 GOLDEN TICKET™ will offer players 20 chances to instantly win prizes ranging from $10 up to $1 million. Players also may enter codes from non-winning tickets for a chance to win one of 15 trips for two to Las Vegas and for the opportunity to play the BILLION DOLLAR CHALLENGE™ and a chance to win up to $1 billion.”

What the “BILLION DOLLAR CHALLENGE” is, and how the amount of the grand prize will be determined, isn’t clear at this point in time. Considering it’s in Las Vegas, I’ll safely assume there will be a second gambling element involved.

And it would be quite ironic if the grand-prize winner of a Willy Wonka themed lottery game was told, “you get… NOTHING! You lose! GOOD DAY, SIR!”

When will the grand prize drawings take place

The drawings for the Las Vegas trips will take place on the following dates:

  • August 3
  • August 31
  • September 28
  • October 26
  • November 30

From the looks of it, three winners will be selected during each drawing.

Trip winners will receive:

  • deluxe hotel accommodations for four days and three nights
  • round-trip airfare for two
  • ground transportation to and from the Las Vegas airport and hotel
  • $1,000 spending money

Instant win tickets have been growing in price

The days of $1 instant wins tickets are becoming a thing of the past. Not only are the prizes growing larger, but the cost of tickets are ballooning. Prices rise because the state lotteries tries to keep revenues up.

Michigan’s Golden Ticket game is modestly priced at $10. Some states have introduced $20, $30, and even $50 instant win tickets.

As noted on Online Poker Report, these rising prices (and somewhat ridiculous grand prizes) has a lot to do with the shrinking pool of lottery players:

During a G2E panel discussion titled, Intersection of iGaming and Lottery all three panelists were in agreement that even though lottery sales were up in a number of states last year, the spike was likely caused by an inordinate amount of massive Powerball jackpots and rising scratch ticket prices. In fact, the number of people participating in the lottery is declining, and growing older, according to the G2E panel.

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Steve Ruddock

Steve Ruddock is a veteran of the poker and online gambling media. A contributor to OnlinePokerReport.com, PlayNJ.com, USA Today, and a variety of other industry publications both online and off, Steve is based in Massachusetts.

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