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Powerball Tickets Sold at ATM’s

Posted at: 04/16/2013 10:40 PM
Updated at: 04/16/2013 10:45 PM
By: Steph Crock

(ABC 6 News) -- The jackpots for the Powerball seem to get bigger and bigger. People who wouldn't normally gamble, are. Now, the Minnesota State Lottery has made buying them even easier.

A number of us rushed out to buy a ticket when Mega Millions was up to roughly half a billion dollars, or just weeks ago, when the Powerball hit around $340 million.

However, there are still some who say the odds aren't worth the couple extra bucks. “You'd have to play for I think 12,816 years and buy $10 per time to come up with even a chance to win," said Dennis Ziegenhagen. He said that while playing a few pull tabs at the VFW in Rochester.

So I asked him, what if they sold Powerball here too, like pull tab machines? He said, "I'd find it a little more convenient to gamble. I don't know of that's good or bad."

Well, they do have that now at certain ATM's. "I was kind of surprised because I always thought that you couldn’t buy lottery tickets with credit cards but you can buy it on an ATM with your debit cards," said Jim Nicholas, the owner of Wildwood Sports Bar and Grill.

"I've never gotten one out of an ATM machine before, but why not?" said Rochester resident Dick Nelson. There was even an ATM that sells Powerball tickets just a couple feet away from those guys at the VFW. There’s also few more at other bars in Rochester, like at Wildwood Sports Bar and Grill.

"We've had the machine for about a year and about a month and a half ago, it just showed up," said Nicholas, but will people actually use these?

"You know, when your sitting there with a drink, it's pretty easy to go to the ATM," said Nelson.

"Well a lot of people comment as their walking by saying, 'oh, you can get lottery tickets here?'" said Nicholas.

Some say it seems a little sneaky to put it so conveniently where you draw from your bank account, but others say, it's not too surprising. "If you want to do that, I think it's great, but if they don't, that's fine too," said Ziegenhagen.

In some areas you can even "play at the pump.” That means you can buy lottery tickets while filling your gas tank, without going to the register. There's a dozen of those at gas stations in the Minneapolis/St. Paul metro area.