What Is a Progressive Raffle?

By Lynne Haley Rose ; Updated January 09, 2018
The more you buy, the more you can win.

Fundraising committees interpret the rules of a progressive raffle in different ways. Some raffles progress as time goes on, and others grow as patrons buy more tickets. The common denominator is the ongoing addition of more money or prizes.

History

The word "raffle" comes from the Old French "rafle," which means to plunder. The English use of "raffle" to describe selling chances to win a prize dates to the 18th century.

Features

In a standard raffle, members of an organization sell tickets, each of which represents a chance to win a prize. In one version of a progressive raffle, the number of prizes grows as the organizers sell more tickets. In another version, the more money a patron spends, the more prizes he qualifies to win.

Time Frame

A favorite raffle prize.

An organization can set a deadline when all ticket sales must be completed. It can have the raffle culminate during a specific event, such as a benefit dinner. Sometimes, state gaming laws regulate the rules and limits for fundraisers such as progressive raffles.

Benefits

A progressive raffle can generate lucrative excitement. By adding prizes as a result of more ticket sales, the fund raising group can encourage patrons who have already bought tickets to buy more.

Potential

Some organizations have progressive raffles with monthly drawings. Every organization member's name goes into the pot, but only those who have purchased tickets are eligible to win. If the ticket drawer does not select a winner, the prize money grows. In this way, an organization can sustain a raffle for several months of fund raising.

About the Author

I have an MFA degree in Creative Writing and am a published poet who has received several poetry awards. I have established a reputation as an environmental activist, both through the group I co-founded -- see alternativeone.org -- and through a series of op-ed pieces in Montana newspapers. I have written extensively on alternative energy, recycling and endangered species.