Mega Millions Jackpot: $154M Prize Sparks Latest Round of Lottery Fever

Friday, 10 May 2013 10:52 AM

By Alexandra Ward

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Lottery fever has caught on across the country after the Mega Millions jackpot ballooned another $15 million this week, meaning Friday's Mega Millions jackpot drawing has reached $154 million.

No one matched all the winning numbers in Tuesday's Mega Millions drawing, but five people did hit for $250,000. Now, tickets are flying off the shelves as people prepare to try their luck again.

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The odds of winning the Mega Millions top prize is about 1 in 176 million
, according to ABC News.



Richard Lustig, a seven-time lottery winner from Florida, appeared on "Good Morning America" last year to share his tips on picking winning numbers.

Pick your own numbers
Don’t leave it up to the machine. Lustig advises against playing Quick Picks, the phrase describing the number the computer picks for you when you don’t use your own.

Do your homework
Go online and make sure the set or sets of numbers you play have never come up before.

Stick with your strategy
You have to learn what number to play and how often to play. Commit to your numbers and stick to your strategy.

Avoid lottery fever
When jackpots get very high, Lustig says, people tend to get lottery fever and spend a lot more than they normally would or can afford. Don't go crazy; the odds are still the same no matter how much you spend.

Mega Millions has seen four big jackpots won this year. In March, 14 people in an Ohio office lottery pool won $41 million. In February, an anonymous player in Maryland won $26 million, while a Michigan woman won $19 million.

The largest jackpot in Mega Millions history was $656 million. Three tickets sold in three separate states matched the winning numbers in March 2012.

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The Mega Millions is played in 42 states as well as the District of Columbia and the U.S. Virgin Islands. Tickets are $1.

Related stories:

Lottery Lawyer Kurland to Moneynews: Winners Should 'Stay Within Themselves' to Avoid Going Broke

$14.3M Jackpot Abandoned, Launching Lottery Investigation, Mystery

Woman Claims She Accidentally Gave Away Winning Lottery Ticket

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