Mega Millions $900 Million Jackpot: How to Play, Win, Buy Tickets for Friday Night Drawing

Lottery ticket holders across the country have been eagerly waiting to find out whether or not they've won as the jackpot climbs higher each drawing. Tuesday and Friday evenings when the numbers are drawn at 11 p.m. EDT those playing have hastily refreshed their computer screens or waited for the numbers to flash on their television screens to see whether they've won.

As of Thursday, the estimated jackpot for the Friday night drawing was at $900 million with a cash option of $513 million. Tickets are available in 44 states as well as Washington, D.C., and the U.S. Virgin Islands. The Mega Millions website allows users to select their state and find out where they can get tickets.

In some states, tickets can be purchased online by those who are registered with the lottery in that state. This is only available in Georgia, Illinois, Kentucky, Michigan, North Carolina or North Dakota to residents. A few other states also have lottery subscriptions available for residents. The tickets cost $2 per play and the Megaplier costs an additional $1 per play.

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Powerball and Mega Millions lottery tickets are displayed on January 3, in San Anselmo, California. Friday's drawing is expected to have a jackpot of $900 million. Justin Sullivan/Getty Images

To win the jackpot, players have to match six numbers on their ticket to the six winning numbers. Five of those numbers are chosen from a pool of one to 70 and the sixth number is chosen from a pool of one to 25. Users can also choose the "Easy Pick/Quick Pick" option.

The Megaplier option allows those who play to multiply their non-jackpot winnings. They can multiply those winnings by two, three, four or five. Non-jackpot winnings will be multiplied by whatever Megaplier number is drawn.

Whoever wins has the option to take the "Cash Option" a lower payout than what the "Annual Payout" option ends up amounting to over the years. The "Annual Payout" or annuity option gives winners an initial payout and then 29 annual payments in the years following. Every payout is five percent more than the one previous. The cash option, on the other hand, is a one-time payout in the form of a lump sum of money.

The next drawing will be Friday night at 11 p.m. EDT and the numbers will be announced on the Mega Millions website as well as in the app and on local television and radio stations. Anyone who wishes to play should buy a ticket before Friday evening.