Can You Legally Buy A Lottery Ticket With A Credit Card? The Truth Will Surprise You


Ohio Lottery will accept credit cards, but only at machines. Watch the video below.

You cruise up to the lotto store and plunk down your tickets. Then you make small chat with the counter staff. And now's the time to pay.

You pull out your credit card, but they hand it back to you. "Sorry, we can't accept credit cards for lottery tickets."

Most lotteries around the world won't accept credit cards. They will only take cash or debit card payment.

There are several reasons for this:

Government agencies are not permitted to pay the credit card fees and commissions for this type of payment.

In the United States, gambling is regulated by state law. So the regulations in separate states determine whether you can buy lottery tickets with plastic.

Luckily there is an alternative answer. A debit card or EftPos card.

Just 20 states allow lottery purchases with credit cards, and seven of those leave the decision up to retailers, according to See the full chart of which states accept cards or not, below.

In Connecticut, for example, while you cannot buy tickets with a credit card, you can use a gift card or debit card -- unless the specific retailer prohibits using debit cards.

 David Gale

David Gale

In Tennessee, however, lottery tickets may only be bought with cash.

"Most of the U.S. lotteries allow the purchase of lottery tickets with debit cards," says David Gale (pictured), executive director of the North American Association of State and Provincial Lotteries.

"But only about 25 percent allow the purchase of lottery tickets with a credit card. A few of the lotteries leave it up to the retailer to decide whether to accept or not accept credit and/or debit cards for the purchase of lottery tickets."

So in Pennslyvania, says David Gale, "...there is no law prohibiting the use of checks or credit cards to pay for lottery tickets."

And the Pennslyvania Lottery states "Many Pennsylvania Lottery retailers and self-service vending terminals now accept debit (but not credit) cards! Look for the signs where this option is available."

"If a retailer wishes, they may accept a credit card -- but the Lottery-installed PIN pads, where available, only accept debit."

Check out your local store and see whether they will accept cards. You never know!

Ohio is the first state to let you buy lottery scratch-offs with a credit card. It will be only be accepted through self-service terminals (photo below, right), not at the counter.


You won't be able to use a credit card to buy MegaMillions and there will be a $100 limit per day per card. Ohio says it is responding to trends with less people carrying cash.

You can also pay at the pump soon. A handful of states, including California and North Carolina, offer the option.

In California, players swipe their credit or debit card at the pump before making a fuel purchase and choose to play Powerball, Mega Miillions or a SuperLotto game. There is a $1 flat fee per transaction. 

State rules for buying lottery tickets with credit cards

State Credit cards accepted for lottery purchases?

Alabama No. Lottery not allowed in state
Alaska No. No in-state lottery.
Arizona Yes. Cash, credit cards, debit cards, money orders or travelers checks are accepted payments. Buying tickets with a credit card is at the discretion of the individual retailer.
Arkansas No. According to the state’s FAQs page, all sales of tickets are for cash, debit card or other noncash, nondeferred forms of payment such as Apple Pay or Google Wallet apps. Payment by check, credit card, charge card or any form of deferred payment is prohibited.
California Yes, but credit or debit cards can be used to buy lottery tickets only at Play at the Pump gas stations and via (for a fee).
Colorado No. Tickets must be sold on a cash-only basis. “Cash-only” includes checks, money orders and debit cards. Retailers may have different a different policy regarding accepting checks and debit cards for purchase. 
Connecticut No, but you can use debit cards to buy lottery tickets, depending on the retailer.
Delaware Yes.
Florida No. 
Georgia No.
Hawaii No. Lottery not allowed in state.
Idaho Yes, and debit.
Illinois Yes. You also can purchase tickets online at the Illinois Lottery website. You can use Visa, Mastercard or Discover credit or debit cards to pay for your online purchase.
Indiana Maybe. Acceptance of credit or debit cards for lottery ticket purchases is at the discretion of the retailer. According to the Hoosier Lottery, most retailers do not accept debit or credit cards due to the fees associated with the transactions.
Iowa No. Credit cards may not be used to purchase lottery tickets. Lottery tickets can be purchased from lottery retailers with cash, debit cards and checks in accordance with payment policies at the particular location involved.
Kansas Maybe. The Kansas Lottery’s website says it has no prohibition against using a credit card or debit card for lottery purchases. Whether to allow purchases of lottery products with a debit or credit card is left to the discretion of each store.
Kentucky Yes. You can purchase lottery tickets via credit or debit card via Kentucky Lottery’s iWallet, according to the state’s lottery site. Minimum iWallet deposit is $10. However, not all lottery retail locations will take credit or debit cards as payment for lottery due to fees they may need to pay for the transaction, the Kentucky Lottery says. 
Louisiana Maybe. It depends on retailer. The Louisiana Lottery website states: Even though regulations allow credit cards to be used to purchase lottery tickets, retailers can decide what form of payment they will accept and some do not accept credit cards to buy lottery tickets. 

Maybe. It is at the discretion of the retailer. The Maine Lottery subscription play service does not allow payment with credit cards. 

Maryland No. Cash, debit, check and money orders are accepted as payment. 
Massachusetts No, but season ticket lottery tickets can be bought using Visa, Mastercard or Discover credit cards. 
Michigan Yes. 
Minnesota No. Minnesota permits retailers selling lottery tickets to accept coin, currency, money orders and checks for the payment of lottery tickets, but retailers can choose not to accept checks or debit cards for lottery tickets. 
Mississippi No. Lottery not allowed in state.
Missouri Maybe. Each retail location is free to accept or refuse debit or credit cards for lottery purchases. For example, Missouri is a state that allows Pay at the Pump lottery purchases with credit cards.
Montana No. Credit cards also cannot be used to purchase lottery tickets online.
Nebraska Maybe. It depends on retailer.


No. No in-state lottery.

New Hampshire

No, not online or in person.

New Jersey

No, but debit cards are OK.

New Mexico

No, cash or check only.

New York

Maybe. It depends on retailer.

North Carolina

No. Acceptable forms of payment include cash, check, debit card and gift card at the retailer’s discretion. In North Carolina, only debit cards can be used for Play at the Pump.

North Dakota

No. A credit card cannot be used to buy lottery tickets. Depending on store policy, the retailer may allow a check or debit card for the purchase of tickets, according to the state’s FAQs page.


Yes. Also, Ohio Lottery self-service ticket vending machines now accept cash and credit and debit cards.


No. Lottery purchases are cash-only transactions.


Yes, and debit.


Maybe. It depends on retailer. According to the Pennsylvania Lottery, while most lottery retailers accept only cash for games, there is no law barring the use of credit or debit cards to pay for lottery tickets. 

Rhode Island


South Carolina

No. All lottery tickets must be paid for with cash.

South Dakota

Maybe. It depends on the retailer.


No. Under Tennessee law, lottery tickets can only be purchased with cash.


No. Texas law prohibits purchase of lottery tickets by credit cards or food stamps. Retailers, at their own discretion, may accept a check for tickets. Retailers can accept a debit card for payment.


No. Lottery not allowed in state.



Virginia No. You can purchase lottery games with cash, debit, and prepaid gift cards (like Visa and Mastercard). Under the Virginia Lottery law, you cannot play games with credit cards. You may want to check with your local retailer about debit. Some have store policies that do not allow debit for lottery games.
Washington Maybe. It depends on retailer. According to the Washington Lottery: Many of our retailers allow you to purchase tickets with debit or credit cards, and some will only take cash.  Many of our retailers have lottery ticket vending machines in their stores that only take cash.
Washington, D.C. No, cash only.
West Virginia No.
Wisconsin No. By law, lottery tickets in Wisconsin may only be purchased with cash.
Wyoming No, and no debit either.

Source: research, December 2017