Wawa stores to stop selling tickets for Maryland lottery New outlets will be found, state says

December 31, 1996|By Peter Jensen | Peter Jensen,SUN STAFF

A major convenience store chain has stopped selling Maryland lottery tickets, but officials don't expect the decision to have much impact on state revenue.

Wawa food stores discontinued lottery sales in Maryland, Delaware and Pennsylvania on Friday. The 496-store chain, which is based in suburban Philadelphia, sold tickets in 62 stores, including 17 in Maryland.

Lori Bruce, a Wawa spokeswoman, said company officials wanted outlets to put greater emphasis on food sales and quicker transactions. Lottery tickets are sold from separate registers, a practice that tends to slow customer service, she said.

"While lottery does generate additional customers, food service is our focus," she said.

Carroll H. Hynson Jr., a Maryland lottery spokesman, said Wawa's decision will have little effect on revenues because new outlets are expected to be established soon in neighborhoods formerly served by Wawa stores.

"In most cases, we've already got a location nearby or in the vicinity of the Wawa outlets that are being replaced," Hynson said.

Wawa stores averaged lottery sales of about $3,000 per week compared with the statewide average of about $5,500 per week for all outlets, Hynson said. There are about 3,800 lottery outlets in Maryland.

Maryland lottery sales have slumped this year. Sales during the second half of 1996 have been 10 percent behind the same period last year.

Pub Date: 12/31/96

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