We’ve researched and answered the most common FAQs (Frequently Asked Questions) relating to the general operation of the New Zealand Lottery.

Reveal the answer to each question by clicking or tapping on the specific question. We constantly monitor changes to the official rules and regulations and update this page accordingly so be sure to keep coming back.

If you have questions related to specific games, visit our Lotto , Powerball , Strike! , Keno , Bullseye and Play 3 FAQ pages.

Can’t find an answer to your question? Contact us and we’ll answer it.

When was Lotto New Zealand established?

Lotto New Zealand was officially created in 1987 as a way to raise funds for community projects throughout New Zealand.

Where do the funds go?

Lotto New Zealand profits are distributed via the Lottery Grants Board to projects and activities in arts, film, sports and community schemes.

How much has been raised?

Since 1987, Lotto New Zealand has raised more than $3 billion to be awarded to deserving projects.

What are the main Lotto New Zealand games?

Lotto is a traditional lottery in which you must match 6 from 40 numbers. There is also a bonus ball drawn from the same pot.

Powerball draws an extra ball from 1-10, which combines with the main Lotto balls for bigger prizes.

Strike! challenges players to predict the first four main Lotto balls in exactly the right order.

Keno is a classic Keno game - you choose up to ten numbers from 1-80, and 20 balls are drawn, with prizes based on how many correct matches you get, and how much you wagered.

Bullseye challenges players to exactly predict the six-digit number that will be drawn, at odds of one in a million, and overall odds of winning a prize are 1 in 10.

Play 3 challenges players to predict the three-digit number that will be drawn, with various types of game play to pay different prizes depending on how many digits are correct, and so on.

How much do they cost?

A single Lotto line is $0.60, but you have to play at least four lines, so the minimum ticket price is $2.40.

Powerball costs $0.60 extra per line, on top of your Lotto ticket cost, since you can't play Powerball without playing Lotto.

Strike! costs $1, but you need to play a valid Lotto ticket too, so the minimum is $3.40 - you can play Strike! without also playing Powerball.

Keno is more complicated, as you can choose your own wager, anywhere from $1 to $100 per ticket, and the prize you receive is multiplied by this (up to the maximum payout of $1 million).

Bullseye costs $2 per ticket.

Play 3 costs $1 per basic ticket, with Multi-play and Combo entries that can take this up to $2, $3 or $6.

Which game should I play?

Obviously it's up to you, but the games differ in more than just the ticket prices.

Lotto is the classic, and both Powerball and Strike! can now be added to tickets for both the Wednesday and Saturday draws. If you want to watch the draw on television for the full excitement of finding out if you have won or not, this is still the only televised option.

Keno gives you a lot of control over your entry - you can even decide how many numbers to choose, between one and ten from the 1-80 range on the play slip. You can also set your wager for each line from $1 to $100. With four draws every day and the option to enter multiple draws in advance, it's a fast-paced, high-stakes game that is likely to suit seasoned gamblers particularly well.

Bullseye is a sweet and simple random number game - the rules treat 999,999 and 000,000 as being adjacent to each other, which evens out the odds no matter what result is drawn. Plus, with a 1 in 10 overall chance of winning a prize - even if it is only a consolation prize - this easy option is likely to please anyone who gets frustrated easily after a run of losses.

Play 3, finally, is as easy or as hard as you make it, with plenty of play options that stack up on top of each other, so your improved chances of winning don't mean losing out on one of the more basic prizes.

Can I just play Powerball?

No - to play Powerball, you must choose a minimum of four lines of Lotto, and add a Powerball number to each line at a cost of 60 cents per line. The minimum ticket price is therefore $4.80.

Can I play Strike! on its own?

No - logically you might think you would be able to just buy a Strike! ticket, as the result doesn't depend on your main Lotto ticket, but it is classed as an add-on game. That means you must buy a valid Lotto ticket, and only then can you add Strike! lines to it.

Can I play just one Play 3 play type?

Yes! One of the really great things about Play 3 is that you can enter any one of the main play types of game, meaning you can either bet on matching the three-digit number exactly, or in any order, or on matching any two out of the three digits.

Importantly, none of these basic game types is the 'main' or 'default' option - you have a completely free choice between the three. Multi-play tickets do exactly what they say, which is to place the same three-digit number on multiple game types, but the total cost and the prizes you will win are exactly the same as if you entered that number on separate tickets for each play type.

The only real exception to this is Combo, which is separate to the standard game types, and enters the digits of your chosen number in every possible order - up to six unique three-digit sequences. Tickets are priced accordingly, and you'll win any or all of the relevant prizes if you get a match.

What is the fastest way to play?

Dips are probably the quickest and easiest way to play the main Lotto draw, as you can play multiple lines across Lotto, Powerball and Strike! without having to choose any of your own numbers.

The biggest Triple Dip costs $26 and will place 20 lines of Lotto automatically, along with the maximum 20 Powerball lines to go with them, and two Strike! entries too - all without you having to choose a single ball of your own.

How many draws take place each week?

Lotto, Powerball and Strike! take place twice weekly, on Wednesday at 08:20 p.m. and Saturday at 08:00 p.m.

Keno draws take place four times each day at 10:00 a.m., 01:00 p.m., 03:00 p.m., 06:00 p.m.

Bullseye and Play 3 draws take place every day at 06:00 p.m.

Obviously, this makes Keno the 'busiest' game, with the shortest wait for the next draw to be made. Bullseye and Play 3 are both daily options where you'll know the result by the evening, whereas Lotto and its add-on games of Powerball and Strike! are only drawn twice a week - although you can watch the draw taking place on TV.

Do I have to play every draw?

No. You can specify which draws you want to enter for each game - for instance, you can buy tickets for multiple draws in advance on Lotto, and specify that you only want to play on Saturdays.

This is particularly relevant with Keno, where there are four draws every day, as it means you can buy into a particular draw without having to play the other three, or having to enter the very next draw regardless of the time of day.