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During the pandemic when many stores weren't selling lottery tickets, I thought it would be a good idea to buy lottery tickets on OLG's website. It was a very, very BAD idea.

I first had to jump through all kinds of hoops, using different browsers on both a Mac and PC in order to prove I lived in Ontario.

Once I got through that, I set up my account using a credit card. More absurdly convoluted hoops to jump through to verify it. When I finally got to the end, I got the message "Something went wrong. Try later." I tried "later," and got the message "We can't process your request."

With no phone number to call, I was forced to use the useless online chat.

I was told the credit card I was trying to use (HomeTrust Visa) was unacceptable and I had to use a Canadian credit card. I pointed out it IS a Canadian credit card. Then I was told HomeTrust flat-out rejects any payments to a gambling site and it was THEM that rejected it. That's absolutely FALSE and I confirmed it as such with HomeTrust.

They may call to verify a purchase on a gambling site - or any suspicious purchase - but they'd never outright reject it.

I was then told OLG ONLY accepts credit cards issued by the Big Four banks: RBC, TD, Scotiabank, CIBC. When I asked why that wasn't mentioned anywhere on OLG's site, the service rep clicked off - the equivalent of hanging up on me. I discovered that the Big Four banks look upon lottery ticket purchases as "cash advances," and charge a cash advance fee of $3-$5 per ticket. Other credit card companies (HomeTrust, PC Financial, etc.) do not.

That seems a little suspicious to me. I'm just saying...

This all took over an hour and I'd had it by then and wanted to cancel the account. You can't do that online and, again, with no phone number to call, I had to go back to the odious online chat. The rep asked why I wanted to cancel, and I explained the credit card problem.

S/he repeated it was HomeTrust that rejected it (oh, whatEVER), and I was told it would take 30 days to cancel the account "as per the policy stated on the website."

Never again! I rarely even buy them at a store anymore. I don't expect to win big - playing the lottery is purely entertainment for me - but I used to win at least a free play once or twice a month.

I've won absolutely NOTHING in the last four months. It's not even entertainment anymore; it's just frustrating and not worth spending any more money on OLG whose revenue just goes into the Ontario government's general coffer, which doesn't benefit anyone or anything.

User's recommendation: Don't give OLG any of your money.

Preferred solution: Apology.

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