Customers at participating stations can play Powerball or Mega Millions while they fuel up their vehicle. Contributed photo
Pennsylvania is one of several states that has a program that essentially turns getting gas for your car into a fun experience — where you could possibly win the lottery.
Pennsylvania Lottery's Play at the Pump program is offered at 671 pumps at 87 fuel stations across the state. Lottery Director of Public Relations Gary Miller said the program allows customers at participating stations to play Powerball or Mega Millions while they fuel up their vehicle.
"It works similarly to the option offered at some fuel retailers to add a car wash, windshield washer fluid or other items to a fuel purchase," Miller said in an interview with Keystone Business News. "The goal is to provide a fun and convenient play opportunity to fuel customers who may never set foot in the store."
The program is provided by Linq3, which is based in Atlanta.
To participate in the program, individuals will swipe their payment card; select "Lottery & Fuel;" select the game and number of desired Quick Pick plays; and verify their age. The Quick Pick numbers will be printed on the fuel receipt.
Participants also have the option to receive their numbers via text and can enter their cell phone numbers on the screen.
Miller said prizes of $600 or less are automatically deposited into the account associated with the credit/debit card used to purchase the ticket.
"For prizes of more than $600, players will need to present the same credit/debit card used for the ticket purchase when they claim their prize at any Pennsylvania Lottery regional office. The prize will be paid by check," Miller said.
There is a $50 per week limit per credit/debit card for Play at the Pump.
Miller said there was no information on recent Play at the Pump winners by name because the Pennsylvania Lottery does not isolate prize claims by the method of purchase, as their systems treat all wins the same, from a record-keeping standpoint.
Linq3 issued a press release stating that a lottery player in Pennsylvania won $50,000 using the technology, but does not list the name of the winner. Currently, Ohio, New York, North Carolina, California, Georgia, Missouri, Pennsylvania and New Mexico have programs via Linq3.
Linq3 developed the technology several years ago. It also has a program called Pay at the Checkout, which uses a lottery card so lottery players can play on their phones.
According to Linq3's website, lottery sales spiked as high as 10 percent after the Missouri Lottery adopted the program in 2013.