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When you have a small win, should you take the cash or buy more tickets?

We all play the lottery in the hopes of winning the big jackpots to get all that money. But sometimes we win nothing and at other times we will a few dollars. So what should you do with small few dollar wins? Should you buy tickets for the next draw, or simply take the cash prize and walk away?

The Logic of the Decision

It might seem like both actions are equally as valid to do. Since you regularly buy your tickets for each draw anyway, using your winnings to purchase tickets for the next draw is a good way to keep playing without spending any extra of your money. You can recirculate your winnings to work for you to buy tickets in the hopes of winning a larger prize.

However, if you win $5, $10, or $100 dollars, that is money you did not expect to receive and is a bonus for your lottery play. By taking the money, you can put it towards gas, groceries, or a nice night out for dinner, pay a bill, put some extra down on your loan payment, or use it however you wish.

Some people do have a hard time trying to decide what to do with smaller wins. If they take the cash and not use it to buy more tickets, then they might feel that they may miss out on winning a bigger prize by not using the cash they won, towards buying more tickets. They may have the belief that it might be a sign that since they won on the last draw, that money should be used to get tickets for the next draw. So if they don’t buy tickets with the prize money, they will be missing out on winning higher prizes that almost must be guaranteed bu purchasing tickets with money won. So they use their winnings to buy more tickets.

On the other hand, if they won cash and need to use it for a needed purchase, then that is basically being able to get that purchase for “free” buy using money they never had before the win. Yes, they might miss out on winning a higher prize if they use their winnings to by more lottery tickets, but they are now able to make that needed purchase that they could not do before.

So what should you do if you win a smaller cash prize? The best thing to do is to keep the money and not use it to purchase any new tickets. Buy your tickets with your own money. It makes no difference what money you use as buying your lottery tickets only with money you won on the lottery does change your luck, odds, or anything else towards you winning or not winning. Use the lottery cash win as “found” money and use it to buy something you actually need, need to pay off or towards, or use it buy yourself some groceries, prescriptions, or a good lunch or dinner.