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Imagine winning nearly $1 billion Friday in the Mega Millions lottery game.

The odds of winning the Mega Millions jackpot are one in 302,575,350, but Young said she already had plans for some things she would do if she struck gold.

The largest USA lottery prize was a $1,586,000,000 (£1,217,000,000) Powerball jackpot paid out to three lucky winners in 2016.

No tickets matched all six numbers to claim the Mega Millions prize Tuesday night.

Lottery officials raised the estimated prize Thursday, two days after no one picked the winning numbers.

With the odds as low as they are and the jackpot is as high as it is, some are saying, "Why not?" But cheer up! There are often secondary prizes to these huge drawings that can be worth millions of dollars, and a shocking amount of them go unclaimed - probably because people get too focused on the biggest possible way to win.

If someone does hit all those magic numbers they'd make lottery history.

Each of the 24 semi-weekly drawings have failed to produce a top victor since July 24, when an 11-member office pool in Santa Clara County, California, hit a $543 million jackpot.

"More people playing does not have an effect on an individual player's chance of winning", says Johnson.

Lottery officials recommend winners take a deep breath, put their winning ticket in a safe spot and consult with a reputable financial planner before popping over to the lottery headquarters. Prizes can range from $2 to $5 million depending on the game and type of ticket. The other significant change that helped fuel the jackpot growth was the increase in the Mega Millions ticket price, which doubled to $2.

And sure someone will win eventually but the odds are not stacked in your favour.

The jackpot goes to a victor who matches the five numbers and the Powerball number.

People in the Chicago area Friday morning were lining up at lottery machines for a chance to become a near billionaire.

"It really draws in what we call the infrequent player", says Johnson.


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