A punter has spent $2000 on tickets, while others are playing for the first time as local Lotto retailers serve queues of millionaire-hopefuls.

Lotto NZ announced ticket sales were on track to reach record levels for tonight's historic $50 million Powerball Must Be Won Draw.

Dianne Dairy owner Sukhjit Singh was blown away when someone dropped $2000 on Lotto tickets a couple of days ago.

"That's crazy," he said of the man who walked away with 100 tickets.

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He said queues today had been out the door, reaching about 20 people at lunchtime today.

Dianne Dairy & Deli owner Sukhjit Singh sold 100 tickets in one pop this week. Photo / File
Dianne Dairy & Deli owner Sukhjit Singh sold 100 tickets in one pop this week. Photo / File

But the customers, most of which he said were tourists or out-of-towners, were tight-lipped about what they would do with the money.

More than 1.3 million tickets have already been sold for the largest Powerball jackpot in history and Lotto NZ expects this to climb to around 2.5 million tickets entered for tonight's Must Be Won Draw.

One of those sales went to a woman who drove nearly 40-minutes every week from Putaruru to Ngongotahā Books, Lotto and PostShop to buy her ticket, a store she believed was lucky.

Ngongotahā Books, Lotto and Postshop co-owner Usha Singh. Photo / File
Ngongotahā Books, Lotto and Postshop co-owner Usha Singh. Photo / File

"Tens of thousands" of tickets have been sold from Ngongotahā Books, Lotto and PostShop and store co-owner Usha Singh said thousands of those were new people joining the regulars in punting for their chance to win.

"We've been rushed off our feet," she said

The couple bought their own ticket from the store for two main reasons: She believed the store was lucky and they've had no chance to leave anyway.

Several customers had promised either sharing Champagne with Singh and her husband, taking them out to dinner, or celebrating in front of the store should they win.

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Another woman had her eyes on buying a farm and another vowed to live on a cruise for the rest of her life.

Last year, the store sold two winning Lotto tickets in a month.

Having owned the store since moving to Rotorua 20 years ago, Singh said she knew they would be lucky after selling a First Division ticket within their first three months.

Since then, the store has won Retailer of the Year in 2015 and had seven trophies for a strike and First Division wins.

Cherrywood Lotto And Bookshop owner Bublee Kaur had received pre-empted gift offerings from winning hopefuls who promised to pay off her mortgage should they win the full amount.

Another offered to pay for her family to travel somewhere or take them on a day out.

There was also a woman who said she would give her $10.

The store had been a buzz, Kaur said, and the average person who walked in was spending at least $40 on two to three tickets.

"One person bought 15 tickets for $24 each ... people are buying more and more," she said.

The general attitude towards the draw was a hope the money was split and fell into "good hands".

 Cherrywood Lotto and Book Shop owner Bublee Kaur with a customer. Photo / File
Cherrywood Lotto and Book Shop owner Bublee Kaur with a customer. Photo / File

And of course, she bought her ticket. Helping create a sense of security for her children's futures was first on the list.

Then, buying a house by the beach in Tauranga.

"We have to dream big," she said.

The wishes were more about giving from customers at Paper Plus Rotorua Central donations to charity the number one thing people said they would do with the money.

Next were things like paying off mortgages and giving money to their children said store owner Heather Jenkins.

The store, which has sold 14 First-Divisions in the past, was "buzzing," Jenkins said, and the majority of the customers had told her they were playing for the first time.

The $20 Hot Picker has been the most popular ticket at AJ's Lotto and Tobacconist in Tauranga and the store was on track to hit eight-times their usual Lotto sales, according to owner Jensen Zeng.

More time needed to be spent explaining how the gamble worked, he said, as many of the customers had never played before.