Tennessee Lottery Games
The Tennessee lottery includes many game options, including instant win scratch tickets and statewide drawing games with a progressive jackpot prize. Most locations offer both gaming options, with a wide range of cash prize winnings available. When you play an instant win game, you'll purchase a ticket and can win a top prize of differing amounts depending on the value of your ticket. The top prize can range from $500 to $5 million in cash, with most prizes earning the winner somewhere between $1 and $50.
Draw games require you to wait until the next draw takes place that night, when you'll see if you've got enough winning numbers on your ticket to earn a prize. If you match all numbers drawn on your ticket, you'll win the jackpot prize for that drawing.
Tennessee Draw Games
Draw games in Tennessee are conducted and run by the Tennessee State Lottery in Nashville. These games are drawn anywhere from multiple times a day to a few times a week, and they're only available in the state of Tennessee. If you're traveling to another state and want to buy a ticket, you won't be able to do that for these games.
Because each drawing is only open to people who buy tickets in Tennessee, the odds are better than playing a multi-state jackpot game. You're only competing with people in Tennessee for the jackpot, so if you do manage to win the top prize, there's a much smaller number of people who could claim the prize with you. This lowers the top prize considerably, but it also makes it easier to win a smaller amount of cash.
Daily Tennessee Jackpot One of the newest forms of gambling is the Daily Tennessee Jackpot, which conducts drawings every night at 9 Central time at Lottery Tennessee headquarters. It launched in November 2022 and began with a top prize of $30,000. As of March 2023, the top prize had yet to be won. Details are as follows: Each night when the prize isn't won, the jackpot increases its top prize. To win the jackpot, players must successfully match all 5 numbers chosen out of a possible 38. It's a popular addition to the lottery TN family because it costs just $1 to play and pays prizes with as few as 2 numbes matched. Additionally, players can enter the QuickCash game, which functions similarly to a scratch ticket. When players purchase their Daily Tennessee Jackpot ticket, they can spend another $1 to play QuickCash and win up to $500. Odds of winning a prize are roughly 1 in 8.36.
Tennessee Cash The main difference between Tennessee Cash and the Daily Tennessee Jackpot is that Tennessee Cash doesn't offer a progressive jackpot as its top prize. Instead, the prize changes based on how many people choose to play for that drawing. The more people who choose to play, the greater the prize becomes if you're a winner. Like the jackpot game, Tennessee Cash starts with a $1 entry fee to play, and you pick 5 numbers to see if you're a winner. In this game, you'll also pick a number for the cash ball, and you need to hit all 6 to win the jackpot. Tennessee Cash draws Monday, Wednesday and Friday at 10:30 p.m. Central time, and odds of winning a prize are roughly 1 in 7. Players can also tick the QuickCash box for another $1 to win up to $500 instantly.
Cash 3 Cash 3 holds three drawings per day six days a week. In this game, players enter 3 numbers between 0 and 9 and can choose to play exact order or any order, with greater potential winnings for an exact order play. Because you have three options to play each day, you must make sure the time shown on the ticket match the drawing you wanted to play for that day. Tickets cost 50 cents or $1, and you have the option to double the cost of your ticket by adding WildBall. WildBall allows you to replace one number to create a match. For example, if you picked 2-7-5 and added WildBall, and the random number generator came up with 2-6-5 and a WildBall of 7, you could replace the 6 with your 7 to create a match. Cash 3 carries a maximum prize of $500, with an additional $180 available with WildBall.
Cash 4 Cash 4 functions very similarly to Cash 3, but you have one more number to try to match and a higher top prize. As with Cash 3, you'll choose numbers between 0 and 9 and must match all of the drawn numbers. Depending on how you opt to play, you must either match in exact order or any order, with greater prizes for exact order. Tickets cost 50 cents or $1, and you can double the cost of your ticket by adding WildBall. The top prize available with Cash 4 is $5,000, plus an additional maximum of $1,350 with WildBall. When you play, you mark the box with the drawing you want for either morning, afternoon or evening.
Tennessee Lottery Keno
Players who want a quick-paced drawing can try Tennessee Keno, which takes place every four minutes between 5 a.m. and 1 a.m. Central time.
In this game, players enter up to 10 numbers for their play and must match a certain percentage of their numbers to win. Usually, this comes out to 50% of the numbers drawn, although players can win if they fail to match any of their numbers on a 10-spot game.
Tennessee Keno includes the Bulls-Eye option, which is a special play on one of the 80 numbers drawn. The Bulls-Eye doubles the cost of your ticket, but if you successfully match the number chosen as the Bulls-Eye, you win even if none of your other numbers match.
The top prize is $100,000 without the Bulls-Eye and $200,000 if it's added and matched on a 10-spot ticket.
Multi-State Draw Games
Multi-state draw games are offered as part of the Multi State Lottery Association, of which Lottery Tennessee is a member. Unlike games exclusive to the Volunteer State, these games can be played in any state that offers legal lottery games, which is why the top prize can exceed $1 billion. The difference between TN Powerball and TN Mega Millions and the games offered in other states is that the MUSL splits the money invested with the Tennessee state lottery when the ticket is purchased in Tennessee. If you'd like fees to help fund a school in Tennessee, you should buy Tennessee Powerball and Tennessee Mega Millions tickets, rather than go out of state.
Tennessee Powerball Players can enter the Powerball drawing three times a week, with drawings held Monday, Wednesday and Saturday. It's most famous for its impressively large jackpots, which can reach more than $1 billion, but it also offers smaller prizes, ranging from $4 for matching only the Powerball (ranging from 1 to 26) to $1 million for matching all five numbers between 1 and 69 without the Powerball. There are three ways to play Powerball: a basic ticket costs $2, adding the Power Play or Double Play costs $3 and adding both costs $4. The Power Play multiplies your winnings by a randomly generated number between 2 and 10 if you win a non-jackpot prize, and the Double Play allows you to enter a second drawing using your Powerball numbers that's worth up to $10 million. Odds are roughly 1 in 24.9 of winning.
Tennessee Mega Millions Mega Millions is also well known for incredible jackpot offerings. Like Powerball, it costs $2 to play, and players must match five numbers between 1 and 70 as well as the MegaBall between 1 and 25 to win the jackpot. Only one extra feature exists with Mega Millions, that being the Megaplier. Similar to the Power Play, the Megaplier multiplies your cash prize by a factor between 2 and 5 if you win a non-jackpot prize. Because the MegaBall has slightly fewer possibilities, the odds of winning a smaller prize are slightly better with MegaMillions, coming in at 1 in 24.
Lotto America Lotto America is smaller, but still offers generous amounts. It functions similarly to other multi-state games, but it's easier to win because players select from 1 to 52 for the five main numbers and only have to pick between 1 and 10 for the Star Ball. Tickets cost $1, and players can add the All Star Bonus for another $1. Similar to other multi-state games, it multiplies winnings by a factor of 2 to 5. Odds of winning are roughly 1 in 9.6.
Instant Win Games
Scratch tickets are the most simple form of lottery gaming, as anyone who's at least 18 can walk up to the counter, purchase one copy of a scratch ticket and try to match the number or symbol on the ticket. These games require no selecting of numbers; the numbers or symbols are selected in advance for the player.
Because the Tennessee state lottery controls the amount of prizes, they know how many of the top prizes are unclaimed. Instant win games can be played from $1 to $50 wagered, with top prizes ranging from $500 to $5 million.
Tennessee Lottery App
The TN Lottery App serves as a one-stop shop for players to check the results of recent drawings, as well as scan their tickets to check if their numbers won. However, unlike some other states, the app cannot be used to buy tickets.
Per Tennessee state law, to play the lottery, you must buy tickets in person. You can use the app to record your numbers and show the cashier the QR code in lieu of filling out a paper ticket.
Betting on sports does have a convenience edge here because you place wagers online through Tennessee sports betting apps.
Season Tickets are not available in Tennessee. You can purchase tickets up to seven days in advance, but all tickets must be bought in person with cash.
Tennessee Lottery History
The Tennessee State Lottery was created by voter referendum in 2002 to fund college scholarships. Then-Gov. Phil Bredesen signed the bill in 2003. Drawings and tickets first became available in 2004, and Tennessee has added several state-exclusive games since. It now offers five drawing games exclusive to Tennessee and four multi-state options, and it has contributed roughly $6.7 billion to education over the course of two decades.
Tennessee Lottery FAQ
No. To play any Tennessee lottery game, you are required to purchase tickets in person with cash. You can use the Tennessee lottery mobile app to save your numbers and show the clerk your QR code, but tickets for the drawing must be purchased on-site at an approved location.
That depends on ticket value. At $600 or less, you can claim prizes at any location that sells lottery tickets. From $600+ to $200,000, you can mail your ticket to Tennessee State Lottery headquarters in Nashville, visit headquarters in person or visit a district offices (Knoxville, Memphis or Chattanooga). Winnings of $200,000+ must be claimed in person in Nashville.
No. Tennessee law requires the names of the winners of Tennessee lottery games – Tennessee Powerball, Tennessee Cash or any other game offered by the Tennessee state lottery – you cannot remain anonymous. Powerball and Mega Millions offer winners the ability to stay anonymous in 11 states, but Tennessee is not on that list.
That varies. Multi-state options such as Powerball and Mega Millions close one hour before the draw begins. Tennessee-based Cash 3 and Cash 4 close 20 minutes before the draw; other games close 15 minutes before. If the numbers are drawn at 10:30 p.m. Central, you must purchase your ticket by 10:15 p.m. Central time or 11:15 p.m. Eastern time.
The highest-money lottery games played only in Tennessee include Tennessee Cash and Daily Tennessee Jackpot. Residents of other states may play these games, but only if they purchase tickets in person at an approved location in Tennessee. These game tickets are not sold in other states.
Winning tickets must be redeemed within 180 days of the drawing date from the Tennessee state lottery. If you won for a drawing on Friday, March 31, you would have until Wednesday, September 27 to claim your prizes. For instant win games, you have 90 days from the announced end of the game (March 1-May 29, for example).
Tennessee does not tax lottery winnings, whether the games are based in the state or not. However, all lottery winnings are subject to federal income tax, and the IRS charges a tax rate of 25%. You must pay federal tax on winnings in excess of $600.
For games being held as of April 2023, QuickCash offers the best odds of any game attached to the drawing-style games, with odds of 1 in 5.24. For the drawings, Tennessee Cash offers the best odds, with odds of winning a prize of 1 in 7.
Yes. The TN lottery app allows you to scan lottery tickets after a drawing, making it easy for you to check if you've won after drawings take place. You can also use the app to check the drawn numbers and match them to your numbers.
Dan Angell lives in Indianapolis and has followed college basketball since childhood, having grown up in the heart of ACC country. He loves finding the angles on every game he watches and believes there's always beauty to be found in every contest, even when that means playing the under.