On November 1, Oklahoma Lottery retailers could begin accepting debit card payments.

“A large percentage of the population uses debit as their preferred form of payment and a ‘cash only” system limited their ability to purchase our products,” explained Brandie Reisman, Director, Marketing & Administration, Oklahoma Lottery. “Not only that, but existing players were having to conduct multiple transactions when they wanted to purchase items other than lottery and wanted to use their debit cards. Accepting debit cards is convenient for those players and allows us to reach a new segment of the population that may have never played before.”

The lottery believes it negatively impacted their sales to not offer debit as a form of payment. “‘Cash only’ meant that the maximum purchase was limited to the amount of cash in one’s wallet, and many people don’t carry cash anymore,” said Reisman. “We feel like there is a large percentage of the population that may not have ever played the lottery for that reason, and now we have the opportunity to reach them.”

In terms of measuring the percentage of lottery tickets purchased by debit versus cash, Reisman said that “we don’t really have a way to track it since the retailers are using their own POS systems.  We have been reaching out to some of our corporate chain partners, and hopefully we can get some of that information from them in the coming months.”

The lottery is anticipating a sales lift from debit card purchases.

As for the legislative priority in the 2019 session, “we are keeping a very close watch on the future of sports betting as it resides in Oklahoma, because that has the potential to affect our business, hopefully in a positive way,” said Reisman.