Lotto says 2000 tickets being sold per minute for tonight's must-win $50 million Powerball draw

Lotto is predicting its ticket sales will climb to 2200 sold per minute between 6pm and 7pm ahead of tonight’s must-win $50 million Powerball draw.

A winning Powerball ticket on the Lotto NZ App. Source: Lotto NZ

Marie Winfield, Head of Communications at Lotto NZ, said 2000 tickets were already being sold at 3pm today.

“Sales are typically at their peak after 5pm. I can’t stress enough how important it is to buy your ticket as early as possible,” she said.

Two million tickets have already been purchased for tonight’s draw.

High traffic is expected again from around 5pm tonight, potentially overloading the MyLotto site as customers are encouraged to purchase their tickets online.

The must-win draw means if no one gets all the Lotto numbers and the Powerball, the prize will be split amongst the winners of the next-highest division.

The largest single win in Lotto's history was on November 26, when someone won more than $44 million.

Earlier this year, another $50 million must-win draw was split between two winners in Auckland, winning more than $25 million each.

The draw will be aired on TVNZ1 at 8pm.