Win Real Money on Scratch Cards

Games of chance are among the most popular events in the world. Even gamblers who keep careful track of which games offer the best payouts, the highest and lowest odds and the most opportunities to influence the game through use of strategies and other gaming techniques enjoy competing in a periodic throw of the dice or other game based on the luck of the draw.

By far, the most popular of these real money games involves scratch cards. Scratch cards lure high stakes players as well as low stakes gamers. There's no skill involved in playing scratch cards but you can win real money on scratch cards if you keep in mind that you're competing for fun and entertainment. 

What are Scratch Cards?

Almost every gaming venue in the world features scratch cards. Lottery and casino players who are looking to enjoy an instant game with instant results generally turn to scratch cards as an option that allows them to play for real cash in an atmosphere of Las Vegas entertainment. Today scratch cards are also available as an online scratch off game so players have the opportunity to play on their PC or mobile device at their leisure. 

To play the scratch card game, simply purchase your scratch card as part of your national, state or provincial lottery, in a land-based casino which features scratch cards or as part of online scratch off gaming at an online casino. You scratch off the covering that conceals the number beneath – if you match numbers, you win. It's as simple as that – no waiting for weekly draws. 

Playing scratch cards online is a little different, but the concept is similar to physical scratch cards. These games allow players to simulate scratching a card on a computer through the utilization of Java and Macromedia Flash. Other than the "virtual scratch," online scratch cards operate similarly to physical scratch cards.   

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Scratch Card Origins

Scratch cards were invited in 1974, making them one of the newest games to be featured in lotteries and casinos. Within a short period of time this simple game has become one of the most popular lottery games of all times. It is featured in national/state/provincial lotteries, land-based casinos and, as of the 1990s, online casinos. 

The game was developed by retail promoter Daniel Bower and American computer scientist John Koza. Koza and Bower realized that, at that time, players in the state lotteries had to wait for at least a week, after purchasing their lottery tickets, to discover the results and find out whether they'd won any kind of prize. Bower and Koza understood that lottery gamers want instant gratification and instantaneous rewards. They developed the scratch to win real money cards together, using an algorithm that was designed by Koza to ensure that the scratch card results were truly random. Once Koza had perfected his design, Bower used his marketing skills to sell scratch cards to the public. 

Their first client was the Massachusetts Lottery Commission which started to offer scratch cards to Massachusetts lottery players as soon as the game hit the market. Once the Massachusetts State lottery started to offer scratch card tickets their revenues jumped from around $1million per week to over $2.5 million per week. Seeing this, other lotteries quickly added the scratch and win real money game to their lottery line-up. Today there are scratch cards in almost every American and Canadian lottery as well as in lotteries in Australia, Great Britain, New Zealand, France, Norway, Russia and many other locations around the world. 


Whichever marketer coined the phrase "presentation is everything" must have been thinking about scratch cards. Although the game grew in popularity, most lottery players didn't start to play scratch cards until 1985. That's when Cal  Tigner invented the clear plastic display case that we recognize today as the universal scratch card display holder. Tigner renamed scratch cards "Take a Ticket" and joined Koza and Bower in the Lottery Industry Hall of Fame for his invention. 

In short order, lotteries everywhere adopted the display case and scratch card activity shot up. When online casinos opened in the '90s the first lottery that they presented as part of their win real money online games lobby involved the scratch card lottery. Today online gamers can win money online scratch cards when they play at the Download Casino on downloaded casino software, at the Flash Casino on any internet browser and at the mobile casino on any smartphone or tablet screen. 

Scratch Card Options 

From the un-complicated scratch-off cards of the '70s and '80s, today's scratch cards have grown. There are varied options including themed scratch cards and scratch cards that bring hundreds of dollars in prizes. Sometimes the player needs to scratch off the entire scratch-able area to see whether the card signals a prize while in other cases the whole scratch-able area must be scratched to reveal a number or other type of code. 

Popularity and Predictability

The popularity of scratch cards has been increasing at a rate greater than any other form of lottery. Some lotteries enable hundreds of thousands of dollars – even millions of dollars – in scratch card earnings.  Scratch Card popularity seems to stem from the tickets' low cost as well as from the instant win aspect of the game. In addition to government-approved lotteries and casino activities, scratch cards are also a frequent option in charity lotteries and other non-profit fundraising efforts. 

The odds on scratch cards are completely dependent on the pick of a random number generator. But there are always attempts to increase the odds and use statistics to find a prize-winning card. Some people try to track the amount of cards sold and prize money won to predict odds. Overall however, the odds of winning are approximately 1 in 5. 

Scratch cards are popular with the lotteries and casinos, not just with the players. Some lottery promoters promote the games by advertising that a series of cards are still available and major prizes are still to be won. Scratch cards make a profit regardless of the return, offsetting any losses. Additionally, many lotteries run second-chance sweepstakes that parallels retail sale of scratch cards which increases consumer demand for scratch cards even further. So it's no wonder that casinos and lotteries promote scratch cards as a suggested game. 

Break Opens

Break open cards – also known as Nevada Tickets, Pickles or Strip Tickets – are a scratch card variation in which concealed numbers, letters or symbols have been pre-determined as winners. The cards have perforated cover window tabs and the customer "breaks open" the window to ascertain whether or not he's won. Winning combinations are highlighted to assist in the identification of winning tickets. 

Scratch Card Variations

In addition to the regular scratch card game there are a number of scratch card variations that have evolved over the years. 

The rules for these variations are relatively simple and similar to the classic Scratch Card game. You start by choosing your deposit and then click the "New Card" button. Your scratch card will display nine panels, each of which is covered with the game logo. When you click "Reveal All" the logo coverings will dissipate and you'll be able to see the images that were concealed beneath. If three of the images match, they start to dance, indicating your win. You then collect your prize.

The payout table displays all of the images from the game, along with the payout value for each image. Your win is dependent on the payout value for the images that you matched, multiplied by the amount of your wager. So, for example, if you make a $2 wager and match 3 images for which the payout value is 50x, you win a scratch card jackpot of $100.

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Some of the most popular of these variations include:

  • Wild Champions – The Wild Champion scratch cards display images of gold medal champions, playing the Wild Animal Olympics. These images include a pole-vaulting bear, a hammer-throwing monkey, a high-jumping giraffe, a goat on the gym mats, a diving elephant and a javelin-throwing stake. Top payout is 250 times your wager.
  • Granny Prix – in the Granny Prix scratch cards, the player sees images of six grey-haired grannies racing hot rods. The biggest payout is 2500 times your wager for the granny riding hot rod #11.
  • Super Zeroes – Super Zero Scratch Card players see images of comic book heroes including Chameleon Boy, Bubblegum Girl, Captain Burger, Magginetik, Uncredible Lump and Power Cell. Top payout is 0,000 times your bet.
  • Slam Funk – in the Slam Funk scratch card game you see funky basketball players. Top payout is 250x your wager for player number 9. 

For scratch card players there are significant advantages to playing a scratch card variation, as opposed to the classic scratch card game. The nine panels on a scratch card variation card, as opposed to the six panels on a regular card, means that you have more chances to win when you play one of the variations. You have more chances to achieve three matching images and collect a payout. So unless you particularly enjoy the classic version of scratch card, find a variation for your best chances of achieving a win.

Scratch Card Fraud

For some reason scratch cards are particularly attractive to scammers and people who perpetuate frauds. These hucksters sell scratch cards for a price that's lower than a regular lottery or casino bet and then abscond with the money. One wide-spread scam involves free-of-charge distribution of cards in which prizes, ranging from small prizes to big-ticket prizes of cars and cruises, are offered. The "winner" is notified that he's won, but he can only redeem his prize by phoning a premium-rate telephone claim line, which involves a significant cost for the call. The promoter accepts the call, keeps the individual on the line for several minutes and then collects the sum that's collected for the phone call. If a prize does materialize, it's worth is less than the cost of the phone call. 

Another scam is perpetuated in much the same way, but the "winner" is told that, in order to redeem his big-ticket item, he must submit a "redemption" fee. The fee is collected and the "winner" never hears from the scammers again. 

Tips for Playing Scratch Cards

People don't play scratch cards for the high odds because, in point of fact, the odds are relatively low. But the game is fun and easy and you learn whether you've won or not within minutes.

Lottery advisors and casino experts offer a few tips for scratch card players.

  1. Different scratch card games offer different odds. If you look at the small print on the back of a scratch card you'll find the odds associated with that particular game. Compare the odds from several scratch card variations in order to make your choice.
  2. Stagger your ticket buying or buy in bulk. Two winning tickets rarely appear one after the other but every roll of tickets usually has at least one winner. If you know that a winning card has appeared from a given pack, give your scratch card activities a rest for a few days, play a different variation or go to a different retailer
  3. Scratch-off tickets have a guaranteed number of winners and losers per pack. Buy a whole pack to guarantee that you'll win something – and hopefully the "something" will be a big winner.  pack, which is usually about 30 or 40 tickets. One way to guarantee. 

The odds of winning when playing scratch cards aren't high but they're higher than those of winning other types of jackpot prizes. This is especially true if you study the odds of the individual games and play those variations that offer the best chances to win real money on scratch cards. It's a gamble, but one that offers a high level of fun and entertainment. So if playing scratch cards comes within your entertainment budget, by all means, buy some cards and scratch away.v