Every year, Americans collectively spend nearly $80 billion playing the lottery. Almost half of that money is never paid out — meaning nearly everyone who plays comes out on the losing end.
With Yotta, you can enjoy the rush of playing the lottery without handing over your hard-earned cash at the convenience store counter. Plus, you can put money away in a high-yield account while you do it.
In this post, I’ll cover the ins and outs of Yotta’s lottery, along with the other features of its online savings account. To start, let’s get into a bit of background on how Yotta Savings works and what it has to offer so you can figure out whether it makes sense for you to sign up for an account.
What Is Yotta Savings?
Yotta is a fintech company that was created around the idea that saving money doesn’t need to be boring.
To this end, Yotta offers a high-yield savings account that’s tied to weekly drawings worth up to $10 million. The idea for Yotta was inspired by premium bonds in the U.K., which function similarly.
Yotta was founded in 2019 and is an entirely digital banking platform, meaning it has no brick-and-mortar branches. Its accounts are backed by Evolve Bank & Trust, an FDIC-insured financial institution.
Yotta Savings Features
The Yotta Savings app is available on iOS and Android devices and has enjoyed rave reviews on both platforms. It currently has a 4.8-star rating (out of 5) in the App Store and a 4.4-star rating (out of 5) in the Google Play Store.
Weekly number draws
As a Yotta bank account holder, you earn free tickets for weekly drawings for cash prizes. You’ll earn one recurring ticket for every $25 in your account up to $10,000 and another ticket for every $150 on top of that.
You can also earn bonus tickets when you enroll in direct deposit. Yotta gives you 20% bonus tickets for your first direct deposit, and each deposit after that earns 5%.
Here’s how the drawings work: Every ticket has seven numbers on it. Every night of the week, Yotta draws a random number at 9 p.m. Eastern Time. The process concludes with the Yotta Ball drawing on Sunday. If one of your tickets matches all seven numbers, you win the grand prize.
So the obvious question is this: What are your actual chances of winning?
The answer for the jackpot is, of course, not good. Yotta places the odds of winning $10 million at roughly 8.2 billion to one. If you hit everything except the final number, the secondary weekly prize is a Tesla Model 3. The car prize comes with (slightly better) 133 million to one odds.
With all of this in mind, you should not open a Yotta account based on the hopes of hitting it big. Instead, think of the weekly lottery as a fun way to encourage your own savings habits, rather than an account feature that’s likely to earn real money.
0.20% annual percentage yield (APY)
Fortunately, lottery tickets aren’t the only way to make money with Yotta. All of your deposits earn a 0.20% interest rate, which is well above the national average. There’s no minimum balance required to earn the APY, and your interest earnings are paid out on the first of every month.
The 0.20% APY isn’t nearly as high as many other online banks. That said, it’s significantly better than what you’ll see with traditional banks like Wells Fargo or Bank of America.
Yotta debit card
Yotta is branded as a savings account, but it functions as an all-in-one account that comes with a debit card. You can use it anywhere Mastercard is accepted and make fee-free ATM withdrawals at more than 55,000 Allpoint locations.
And in true Yotta fashion, the card comes with a chance to earn more tickets and prizes. For every $10 that you spend, you get an extra ticket in the weekly lottery. On top of that, you have the chance to get each purchase for free when you enroll in direct deposit with Lucky Swipes.
Every time you swipe your Yotta Card, you have a one-in-250 chance of the purchase being free. For in-person restaurant transactions, the odds go up to one in 100.
Rather than separating into two accounts, the Yotta Savings Account offers savings buckets to help you reach your goals.
You can customize the various buckets however you like, set personal deadlines for your targets, and track your progress through the app. You can also quickly move money between different buckets, and all funds earn the same 0.20% APY.
With Pool Play, you can increase your odds in the weekly lottery by teaming up with family and friends or other Yotta members.
You can create your own pool or join an existing one and choose how many of your tickets you want to allocate to it. If someone in your pool wins, the prize is distributed between everyone who joined, taking into account how many tickets each member contributed.
With your Yotta Crypto Bucket, you can convert your savings into cryptocurrency and earn more tickets and a higher interest rate. You earn one ticket for every $5 in your Crypto Bucket, and the funds stored there earn an average APY of 4.0%.
Credit Builder Bucket
If you’re looking to give your credit score a boost, you can take advantage of Yotta’s Credit Builder Bucket. This effectively works as a small loan that you pay off over time while Yotta reports your on-time payments to the major credit bureaus.
Here’s how it works:
- First, you need to apply for the Credit Builder Bucket. There’s no credit check required, and once you’re approved, Yotta deposits $1,000 into it.
- Over the next two years, you make a $55 payment each month. All of these payments are reported to the three major credit bureaus.
- Once the loan is paid off, your Credit Builder Bucket is unlocked, and you can access the entire loan amount.
The thing to consider here is whether or not you’ll be able to make on-time payments each month. If you’re 15 days late, Yotta charges 5% of the total amount due. If you’re 30 days late, Yotta will report this to credit bureaus as a late payment, which is obviously counterintuitive to what you’re trying to achieve here.
Besides these considerations, there aren’t any fees or interest. According to Yotta, you can expect your credit score to increase by as many as 40 points within the first two months.
Like many neobanks, Yotta offers access to your direct deposit up to two days earlier than traditional banks. As a somewhat more unique feature, Yotta also comes with early access to your tax refund, which allows you to unlock those funds over the year instead of waiting for a lump sum at the end of the year.
Yotta Savings Pricing and Fees
Aside from a 50-cent monthly charge if your account balance is under $5, Yotta is an entirely fee-free banking platform. It doesn’t charge monthly maintenance fees, out-of-network ATM fees, foreign transaction fees, or overdraft fees.
The lone exception is for cash deposits, which Yotta offers through a partnership with Green Dot. You won’t pay anything to Yotta when you deposit cash, but Green Dot retailers charge up to $4.95 per deposit.
Signing Up and Getting Started
To get started, download the Yotta app or head to its website, withyotta.com. To sign up for an account, all you need is your name and an email address.
From there, you need to connect a bank account to make your initial deposit. You’ll also need to supply Yotta with your address, date of birth, and Social Security number.
There’s no minimum deposit requirement to open a Yotta account, and the entire process should take just a few minutes.
Yotta Savings Promotions, Bonuses, and Coupons
Yotta offers two different promotional bonuses and — as you could probably guess by now — the rewards are more tickets for the weekly lottery.
The first bonus is similar to a credit card intro bonus, and you need to use your debit card to get it. After you open your Yotta account, you’ll get 1,000 bonus tickets if you spend $2,000 or more in the first four months.
The other bonus is available through Yotta’s referral program, which is divided into tiers based on how many new people you can bring in. Here’s the breakdown:
- Bronze Tier (two referrals): 100 tickets per referral
- Silver Tier (three to five referrals): 150 tickets per referral; one-time 300 ticket bonus for your third referral
- Gold Tier (six to nine referrals): 200 tickets per referral; 5% extra ticket bonus for one year; one-time 600 ticket bonus on your sixth referral
- Platinum Tier (100-plus referrals): 250 tickets per referral; 10% extra ticket bonus for one year; one-time 1000 ticket bonus on your 10th referral; exclusive metal debit card
Yotta Savings Security
With Yotta, there’s no need to worry about your sensitive information ending up on its servers. All bank transfers are handled through Plaid, and Yotta uses 256-bit AES encryption. It also has strong access controls and other secure processes to keep your data and money safe.
Yotta is also protected by FDIC insurance through its partner bank, so you can store up to $250,000 there with confidence.
Customer Service and Support
If you need some help with your Yotta Savings account, you can reach its support team through online chat, email, or over the phone (844-945-3449). Its customer service hours are 9 a.m. to 6:30 p.m. Eastern Time, Monday through Friday. If you’re just looking for a quick fix, you can also check out its extensive list of FAQs on Yotta’s website.
Much like its mobile app, Yotta has received excellent reviews in terms of customer satisfaction. It also has an impressive 4.8-star rating on Trustpilot.
Pros and Cons of Yotta Savings
- No monthly fees
- Better APY than traditional savings accounts
- Weekly lottery
- Solid referral program
- Low chance of winning the lottery
- Lower APY than other online bank accounts
- Sign-up bonuses are more lottery tickets — not cash
- Limited account options
Alternatives to Yotta Savings
Yotta is what’s known as a prize-linked savings account, and there aren’t any other accounts quite like it.
That said, if the main draw of Yotta is its features that help organize and encourage your savings, here are some of your best options to check out.
Ally Bank High Yield Savings
Ally’s High Yield Savings Account is almost entirely fee-free and comes with a 0.50% APY.
Like Yotta, it encourages the use of savings buckets, which you can use to divvy up your savings to work toward multiple goals simultaneously. It also boosts your balance with debit card Round-Ups and analyzes your checking account to automatically transfer funds you can afford to save.
Capital One 360 Performance Savings
Capital One’s 360 Performance Savings is an online account with no fees, no minimums, and a 0.40% APY. Capital One has a top-tier mobile for quick transfers and automated savings plans. As a hybrid bank, it also offers in-person support at its branches and cafes.
Varo’s online savings account comes with a few different features to help you grow your nest egg.
The Save Your Pay feature automatically takes your chosen percentage from your direct deposits and adds it to your savings balance. With Save Your Change, your debit purchases are rounded off and the remainder is also added to your savings.
Plus, the APY should help incentivize you. Varo’s standard rate is 0.50%, but for balances of $5,000 or less, you get a massive 3% rate when you enroll in direct deposit.
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)
Is Yotta Savings safe?
Yes. Yotta is a safe platform that’s protected by bank-level security protocols, plus FDIC insurance.
Can you lose money with Yotta?
No. Yotta issues tickets for its weekly lottery based on how much you have in your account. You don’t pay anything for your entries, so there’s no risk of losing money for playing.
Is Yotta Bank legit?
Yes. Yotta is a legitimate fintech company that offers accounts backed by Evolve Bank & Trust.
Is Yotta Savings Right for You?
If you’ve ever thought to yourself that saving money could use a little more excitement, Yotta might be a perfect fit.
If nothing else, the platform is a unique approach to an online savings account. Its weekly lotteries create excitement, and even if you don’t win the big prize, you’re still putting money away for a rainy day.
Additionally, Yotta also offers excellent mobile features and customer support, so there’s plenty to like aside from its tough-to-get prizes.
At the same time, it’s important to consider why you’re opening an account.
You don’t want to count on a random number generator for income — especially when the odds of winning the bigger prizes are so low. In my opinion, if you’re considering Yotta, take the lottery off the table and make your decision based on its other features.
At the end of the day, personal finance is all about finding what works for you. So if a one-in-a-million chance at a Tesla helps you save for the long haul, I’ll call that a win.