Planned vs Impulse Ticket Purchases

Do you plan buying tickets or just grab them on a whim?
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Planned vs Impulse Ticket Purchases
  • Author:
    William Monroe
  • Published:

Most humans are creatures of habit. When we get into a routine, we tend to stick with it, and avoid any deviation of any kind. However, there are some people who don’t operate this way and do things on the spur of the moment. They are spontaneous people. Being a planner or an impulse buyer is neither good or bad, it’s just the way people are in their everyday lives.

Gambling Habits

And that transfers over into their gambling habits. Some people play the same numbers each week, buy the same game tickets in the same quantity, do so at the same retailer, usually on the same day at the same time of day. Others simply buy tickets on any whim. It doesn’t matter where they are, what day or what time it is, or what draws are coming up. If they feel they should buy tickets, then they buy them.

Traditionally, people who are lottery purchase planners are more apt to have a better control over their gambling. Since they tend to buy the same dollar amount of tickets each week at the same retailer, they rarely spend more than they intend to. Impulse buyers on the other hand are more likely to spend more each week depending on where and when they happen to be near a retailer. And their purchasing fancy kicks in. So is there any advantage to being one type of lottery player over the other?

As far as odds or chances of winning a prize, it makes absolutely no difference whether you are a planner or impulse buyer. Winning or not winning has nothing to do with how you buy your ticket. But many studies on the topic of impulse buying do show that make mostly impulse purchases tend to spend more than they actually intend to as they are not keeping any track of their spending so really don’t realize how much money is going out. So impulse buyers will tend to overspend on lottery tickets as they simply buy them as the mood or opportunity hits them.

Planner purchasers are more apt to stick to exactly what they want and usually know how much is going out. A good analogy of this is grocery shopping. Impulse purchases go into the grocery store and simply go up and down the isles, looking for sales, buying what appeals to them, and checking out and buying new foods, and just throwing them into their cart. Planners walk in with a list and usually just go through the store with the sole intent of purchasing what is on the list and adding up the total.

Impulse Buying on Big Jackpots

But when it comes to higher jackpots, such as high progressive amounts, planners can become impulse buyers. The higher jackpots or special draws may or may not be attractive to the impulse buyer, but seem to trigger something in the planner. They may purchase a few extra tickets to a large amount of tickets depending on their perception of the draw and amount. It’s at this point that the planner may indulge in more impulse that planner purchase, and forgo the regular ticket purchases in lieu of the large jackpot or special draw, spending much more money than they intend to

If you are an impulse ticket buyer, nothing will influence your purchasing patterns one way or another. You buy when either opportunity or mood hits you. You may spend more money than you should, but you also don’t necessarily spend more if the jackpot is large or there is a special draw. However, if you are a planner purchaser, you mostly spend only what you intend to the majority of the time. But if the huge jackpot presents itself, you could end up spending way more that really have to do so.

Regardless of the type of purchaser you are, it’s a good idea to keep tabs on your lottery ticket purchases to ensure you are not spending more than you want or can afford. Put a limit on your impulse buying, and really make sure you want to buy extra tickets outside of your planned purchases if the jackpot rises. It’s ok to be either type of player, but be the type of player who manages their money properly regardless of how you buy your tickets.

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