Scratch cards, often dubbed “instant lottery,” provide immediate chances to win by physically or virtually scratching concealed areas on a ticket. If it’s not immediately apparent to you why this is prime gambling entertainment in Canada, keep reading.
In Canada, these cards range in prizes from small amounts to million-dollar jackpots. You will learn the most remarkable wins on record for Canada, as well as learn a trick or two that will help you step up your game.
Basics of Scratch Cards
The concealed areas we mentioned earlier can be scratched away to reveal symbols, numbers, or messages. These hidden elements, in turn, indicate whether the ticket is a winner or not.
Traditionally made of a paper-based material or thin plastic, scratch cards work on a simple premise: purchase, scratch, and immediately discover if you’ve secured a win.
While the core principle remains consistent – scratch and win – the themes, designs, and gameplay variations offer something for everyone. This is ever so true when it comes to playing online.
The best gaming software developers really go out of their way to elevate the simple act of scratching a ticket to new heights.
Types of Scratch Cards
The variety of scratch cards available can be dizzying. Though it’s normal to expect something dull and repetitive, online players are in for a treat. From holiday themes to popular cultural references, there’s a scratch card theme to suit every interest.
The likes of Merlin’s Millions and Pig Wizard have a magic theme with cartoony artwork that keeps the play area easy on the eyes. But Wish Upon a Jackpot, for example, has a more sophisticated viewport and graphics.
While there are different nuances that can be studied, in essence, the games of this type play and feel the same. However, it would be wise if you can tell apart the different types that exist out there. We listed them for you:
- Multiplier Cards
- Bonus Play Cards
- Match & Win Cards
- Progressive Jackpot Cards (online)
- Instant Win Cards
- Multiple Chance Cards
How to Play Scratch Cards
As one of the easiest gambling games to play, scratch cards are not at all taxing on your skills or knowledge. To participate, you just need to have purchased a ticket or made a bet if you play online and scratch the concealed areas. This is how it’s done:
- Purchase a scratch card from an authorised retailer.
- Use a coin or a similar object to scratch off the covered area.
- Match symbols or numbers according to the game’s rules to determine if you’ve won.
- Check any bonus areas or additional games on the card.
- If you’ve won, follow the instructions on the back of the card or visit the lottery’s website to claim your prize.
Prizes & Payouts
The reward system for scratch cards is multi-tiered, with smaller prizes being more frequent and large jackpots being rare. In Canada, for instance, scratch cards might offer prizes ranging from a free ticket or C$2 up to C$1 million or more.
Claiming a prize typically involves visiting an authorised claim centre, especially for larger amounts. Always remember to sign the back of your winning ticket to ensure no one else can claim your prize.
When it comes to claiming a prize won online, all you have to do is have a verified casino and payment account. If no further verifications are required, you can proceed to withdraw the money.
Advantages of Scratch Cards
The allure of scratch cards lies in their simplicity and immediate gratification. Players don’t need to understand complex rules or wait for a draw. The moment the card is scratched, you know if you are getting paid or not.
This instant payoff, coupled with the relatively low cost to play, makes scratch cards a popular choice among casual gamblers. Most scratch cards have decent winning odds, too – 1 in 2.35 or better is considered very good.
These two factors combined together make scratch cards a preferred way of gambling for the masses. It’s very easy to get started and a little hard to build on your play, but that’s more than a fair deal for most players.
Scratch Card Strategies
It’s best to get this out of the from the start – there is little to no room for strategic play with scratch cards in Canada. It would be like claiming that you can win the lottery with a strategy.
However, there are things good to know for players who intend to play scratch cards on a regular basis. We’ve compiled a few tips that will help you get more enjoyment and predictability out of your game:
- Some theorise that cards from certain batches, or cards closer to the end of the roll, have a higher probability of being a winning one. We prefer to stay away from these theories and don’t recommend them.
- Budgeting is a must for every form of gambling. Ensure that you don’t overspend.
- Never gamble to win back. Scratch cards are a game of chance based purely on luck. Therefore, treat it as a fun way to win a prize, not as a way to earn money.
- Always verify if older cards are still valid before playing.
Online Scratch Cards
Online scratch cards are celebrated for the convenience of playing anytime from anywhere. Digital platforms often have a wider range of themes and gameplay variations, not to mention they give you the chance to win sweet jackpots.
What’s more, you don’t have to worry about losing your ticket and consequently – your winnings. But theory can get only so far. We’ll do you one better by listing the best online scratch cards playable from Canada:
- Happy Scratch
- Power Cash
- Wild Win Doubler
- Diamond Duet
While there are other games of this type with commendable gameplay and payouts, these titles have won over player’s hearts. You will be able to experience interesting dynamics, animations, and fair payouts by playing the games on the list.
Promotions & Bonuses
Many online casino platforms offer promotions as incentives for scratch card players. These can range from matched deposits to free plays or exclusive scratch card games. Getting more cash means you get to boost your bankroll and stand a chance to win big, with no risk.
This is a very powerful boost for every online gambler, but that’s not all. Regular online players also have something to look forward to. Reload offers can give you extra money when you make a second or third deposit.
And then come the daily offers, which have a special perk for participants for certain days of the week. Canadian gambling sites are so out-of-the-box that your best call is to keep your eyes peeled for new promotions.
At the same time, you must remember to read the terms and conditions associated with any bonus you may be considering. If the terms demand too much of you, don’t opt in.
Scratch Card Etiquette
While scratch cards might seem straightforward, there are certain behaviours to consider. You can’t go wrong if you respectfully conduct yourself in front of everyone around you, but here are a few more specific tips to follow.
- Preserve your privacy at all costs if you play in person and there are people around you.
- Discard losing tickets responsibly.
- Avoid holding up a queue if you’re scratching off multiple cards at a retailer.
- Remember to bet responsibly and in moderation.
Also, don’t forget to be polite with the vendor or kiosk owner. A smile or a kind word can go a long way. Other times – when it’s just you and the ticket, remember that you don’t want to overspend when Lady Luck isn’t on your side.
Famous Scratch Card Wins
Canada has witnessed its fair share of lottery surprises, and scratch card games are no exception. These instant-win tickets have played a significant role in the lives of their owners. Here are the most inspiring cases, as reported by the OLG:
- In 2021, a woman from Kelowna, B.C., Darlene Curylo, won $3 million from a Triple Millions scratch-and-win ticket, which she purchased from a Circle K store on KLO Road.
- In 2022, James Courtemanche from Sudbury, Ontario, won $88,888 from a lottery scratch ticket, marking his second big win in five months from the same store. Previously, he won $100,000 in August.
- In 2023, 18-year-old Brett O’Neil won $50,000 from an Instant Crossword scratch card. He intends to use part of his winnings to repair his boat and save the remainder. The ticket was bought at Ormsbee’s Mercantile on Battersea Road in Inverary, as per the Ontario Lottery and Gaming Corporation.