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Learn How To Play Pick 3

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ANNCR: Today let’s check out what’s known as a numbers game.

We have two here in Iowa: Pick 3 and Pick 4.

Let’s go with Pick 3.

It’s a little different than a traditional lotto game because what you can win depends

on the type of play you make and how much you spend on each play.

There are two main ways to play Pick 3.

The first is to let the lottery terminal pick the numbers for you.

All you have to do is ask the clerk for a Pick 3 “easy pick” ticket and your numbers

will be assigned at random with the Straight/Box play style, which will be a $1 play.

You can also choose your own numbers and play type, and for that you’ll need a play slip.

Look for the one that says “Pick 3” on it.

For this first part, you’ll pick a set of three numbers, each from zero to nine.

Next, you’ll need to select the play type.

Your options are Straight, Box, Straight/Box, Front Pair and Back Pair.

Let’s break down what each of those play styles means.

If you make a straight play, you’ll win a prize only if the numbers you’ve played—for

example, 1-2-3 are selected in that exact order in the drawing.

If you make a box play, you’ll win a prize if the numbers you choose come up in any order.

So, if you choose 1-2-3 and the winning numbers are 2-3-1, you’d still win.

You also can make a straight/box play, which means you’ll win a prize if the numbers

on your ticket come up in the exact order or any order drawn.

It’s statistically harder to match the winning numbers in the exact order they come up, so

the prizes you can win on a straight play are bigger.

There are two other play options as well, and their names are pretty self-explanatory.

They’re called front pair and back pair.

With front pair, you’ll win a prize if you match the first two numbers in the drawing

in the exact order selected.

And it’s just the opposite for back pair— you’ll win a prize if you match the last

two numbers in the exact order they’re drawn.

Plays in Pick 3 range in price from 50 cents to $5, while the prizes you can win run from

$30 all the way up to $3,000.

It’s true that prizes in Pick 3 are smaller than those in big-jackpot games, but the odds

of winning are significantly better.

Pick 3 drawings are held twice daily, seven days a week.

Midday drawings are held at 12:20 p.m. and evening drawings are at 10 p.m. Central Time.

As an extra bit of convenience, you can play for more than one drawing by marking the “Multi-draw”

section on the play slip.

You can play up to 8 consecutive plays for either midday or evening, or up to 16 consecutive

plays for both midday and evening drawings.

Now that the play slip is ready, just hand it to the clerk to get your Pick 3 ticket.

You can also create an e-playslip using the Iowa Lottery’s LotteryPlus Apple or Android app.

You can check for the winning numbers online or by calling the Winning Numbers hot line

at 515-323-4633.

The clerk at any lottery terminal can also print out the winning numbers for you.

Visit our website at to see all the ways you can win and the various prizes

you can win based on the numbers chosen, play style, and amount you choose to play.

Pick 3 prizes must be claimed within 90 days of the drawing for which they were eligible.

Once you have your ticket, sign the back so everyone knows it’s yours.

Keep it in a safe place because you’ll need it to claim your prize—no exceptions.

And now that you know how to play Pick 3, good luck!