The Gift of a Lifetime: A Winning Lottery Ticket

A winning lottery ticket as a gift

What better gift could there possibly be in the world than giving someone a winning lottery ticket? Besides a brand new Escalade or a trip to Cabo you’d be hard pressed to find something anywhere near as exciting as giving someone a lottery ticket that wins big.

It’s always a go-to for people looking for something to throw in a birthday or holiday card so they don’t look super cheap while still maintaining a ‘gift’ to go along with the card. No one really wants to throw a $20 or $50 bill in with every card they give out throughout the year (hell, I’d go broke!) so why not just throw in a few bucks worth of scratchers to make everybody happy.

But what happens when that $5 scratcher that you gave your cousin for his 30th birthday turns into a $100,000 jackpot win? Well, I’d hope he’d do more than just give you a ‘thanks man!!’ That’d be awfully depressing and you’d probably get the urge to give him an old fashioned knuckle sandwich, but since we’re civil human beings we fight that urge and just have to be happy for his win. You’re probably thinking, ‘yeah right that guy better give me at least a couple thousand!’. Don’t worry, I’m thinking the same thing and so is everyone else that’s ever given away what would have been their winning lottery ticket.

So now that we’ve broken down what giving away a winning lottery ticket feels like for us, let’s set a basis for some of the rules of giving and receiving lottery tickets as gifts:

Be Cheap, But Not Super Cheap

If you’re buying scratchers as a gift, and you’re like me, then you’re probably doing it because you don’t feel like, or can’t afford, spending $10-20 on the person you’re giving it to. For me, whenever I get scratchers as gifts I’m always more pumped than if I was to get just plain money. I’m not sure what it is, but something exhilarates people when they get the chance to win big without having to risk any of their own money.

But what should we give to someone that’s super close to us that we regularly exchange gifts with? Well, let’s take a look at a little tier system that we’ve set up for this.

Tier 1 – Close Family & Friends

When we say close family and friends, we’re talking about real close. For me, I’d put all of the following people in this tier: mom, dad, brother, sister, grandparents, gf/bf, and any other super close friend that you have that you usually give birthday/Christmas presents too. For them, I’d say you should be buying at least $10 worth of tickets.

Throw in a $5 or $10 ticket that has the potential for a huge win and then throw in a couple $2 tickets and maybe one or two $1 tickets. That’ll fill the card up and make them really feel like they’re still getting one helluva present, even if they lose. Here’s our setup for this tier:

1-2 $5 or $10 tickets — 2 $2 tickets — 1-2 $1 tickets

I’d say your best bet is to go with 2 $5, 2 $2, and 2 $1 tickets. You’d be spending $14 and whoever is receiving, it is going to be ecstatic about their chances. Plus, with six tickets, there’s a darn good chance they at least win something and are that much more grateful for the present.

Tier 2 – Somewhat Close Family & Friends

Now we’re talking about the people you usually just send cards to in order to somewhat keep in touch with them throughout the year. The people who you find out about their birthday through Facebook because you’ve never really actually known when their birthday is. C’mon, I know we’re all guilty of that. Old friends, aunts, uncles, and cousins all fit into this category for me. I’d also put your significant other’s parents into this tier.

Here’s a look at a setup for this tier:

1-2 $5 tickets — 1-2 $2 tickets — 1 $1 ticket

Your best bet for this tier is to go with 1 $5, 1 $2, and 1 $1 ticket. That’s $8 and they’d probably be quite surprised that you got them three tickets.

Tier 3 – Distant Relatives and Once in a While Friends

For this tier we’re talking about people that you hardly ever talk to. The aunt that lives 1,000 miles away that just sent you a card after she finally found out the address of the apartment you moved into months ago. She sent you a Valentines card telling you how much she misses you so, I mean, you have to send her something back right?

Here’s the setup for this tier:

1-2 $2 — 1-2 $1

I’d say go with 2 $2 and 1 $1 for this tier. It’ll make their day and while only costing us a $5 foot long from Subway.

If They Win, Act Happy For Them

So we just gave them the $5 winning lottery ticket and they call us screaming that they’ve won $50,000 off of it. As much as we’re going to want to say that we should be getting a cut of it, we have to avoid that at all costs. Even if it’s jokingly, which it probably will be, we can’t act like we’re begging for them to give us a piece of the pie.

Being patient and happy for them is the best route to go with this. People are going to be much more willing to help us out and give back to us if we’re not nagging at them asking for what we think should be ours. I know, I know, I know, they wouldn’t have won the money without us. But we’ll have a much better chance getting some change if we let them realize that for themselves rather than shoving it down their throats. I apologize for getting deep on you here but giving without expecting anything in return will yield you a much higher profit than giving while expecting the same or more in return.

It’s kind of funny to be telling you what you should be doing if someone wins a huge winning lottery ticket off of a gift that we gave them. I mean, how many times is that going to happen in our lives? But hey, at least you’ll know what to do if it does right?

If We Receive a Winning Lottery Ticket We’re Obligated to Do Something for Them

This one is fairly obvious after what we have already discussed, but I figured it should be mentioned and explained a little further. When I’m talking about you receiving a winning lottery ticket and giving back to the gift giver I’m talking about anything over $100. If you win $100 from somebodies gift, we better be taking them out to eat or buying a few drinks for them.

As a consistent lottery player we have to keep the karma and mojo in our favor at all times. We’re not looking for a $100 or even $500 winner; we’re looking for the big one, the life changer. Well, actually, most of us are looking for just about anything but stay with me here. If we don’t keep karma in our favor we could ruin our chances at any type of luck in the future. Pay it forward and do it often and watch karma consistently works in your favor.

Hopefully the guide and breakdowns in this article will be helpful for your gift giving strategies down the road. I’ve tried to list some of the ‘unwritten’ rules of giving lottery tickets as gifts so we can be more comfortable with how to handle those situations, even if actually giving or receiving winning lottery tickets is fairly rare.