Abbreviation: PA
Population: 13, 011, 844 (2022)
Capital: Harrisburg
Largest city: Philadelphia
Regulated year: Pennsylvania Racehorse Development and Gaming Act (2004), Truck stop and Satellite Casino Bill (2017)
Estimated revenue: US$5 billion
Gambling age: 21 years old
Currency: US Dollars
Online gambling: Online Casino, Poker, Sports Betting, Bingo, Lottery

Pennsylvania Casinos & Gambling – What you Should Know

One of the states classified as a Middle Atlantic state along with New York, New Jersey, Maryland, and Delaware. It is also where the sweetest place on Earth is, Hershey. The place where the popular Hershey Chocolate’s factory is located. It is also the 10th best places to live among the 50 states. Although quite in the tail for economy and affordability, Pennsylvania still has gained a favorable score.


Pennsylvania Casinos & Gambling

Like most of the other countries, the first gambling legislation passed in Pennsylvania was about lottery. Through Act 91, the government operated PA state lottery was established in 1971. It was made with the main purpose of relieving the property taxes of the elderly and those who are 65 years and older. Along with the intention to repress the citizens to go into illegal gambling.

Casino legislation was also pushed in the 1980s until 1990s as a result of passing Act 91. However, majority of Pennsylvanians took Nevada as an example of how a society would be if gambling is legalized – full of corruption and criminals.

The last failed push for legalizing gambling in Pennsylvania was in 1999. It was a gaming bill approved by the State House and was allowed to be voted whether the state should allow slot machines at the four racetracks, authorized riverboats, and video pokers in taverns. However, there was no schedule made for voting so the outcome was the same as those from the previous years.

Finally in 2004, Act 71 was passed by the Pennsylvanian legislators. It was called the Pennsylvania Racehorse Development Gaming Act which was established by the Pennsylvania Gaming Control Board. The act legalized both casinos and racetracks in the state. It was evident that horse racing is the most viable field that would create job opportunities and money to the Pennsylvania.

The earnings from the machines and the racetracks are used for the relief of property tax, local government funds, and various horse breeders’ assistance. Passing the act became possible as the new generation of Pennsylvanians grew to adults and has been more favorable towards gambling. It lessened the strong view of the older generation of moral, social, and religious grounds which opposed the previous gambling acts.

Pennsylvania Online Gambling Laws

In 2017, Pennsylvania finally opened its arms to online gambling. Through Expanded Gaming Act, online slot machines, online banked table games, and online poker were finally legalized. It also allowed the Pennsylvania Gaming Control Board to issue licenses and regulate the licenses they have issued. There are 39 licenses available for online gambling and are divided evenly between online poker, online slot machines, and online banked table games.

There are also three rounds of licensing for operators. The first round allows licensed land-based slot machine operators 90 days to petition a license to provide all three online games for US$10 million. From 90 to 120 days after opening the petition board, the Pennsylvania Gaming Control Board allows filing for individual gaming licenses for US$4 million for each category. After 120 days, gaming operators who qualify can petition for the leftover licenses still at US$4 million per category.

Operators who wish to partner with licensed operators are also charged US$1 million. As of the 2018, there are nine casinos who petitioned for a license. It was then followed by a 30-day period allowing Pennsylvanian casinos to purchase á la carte licenses at US$4 million each. Further, B2B and B2C operations are also charged US$1 million for each separate licenses.

Payment Methods in Pennsylvania

Online casinos were made for the convenience of the gamblers. Therefore, payment and deposit methods are also made quick and easy. Below we have listed the popular payment methods available in Pennsylvania. However, the availability of these methods are depending on the casinos.

  • Visa
  • Mastercard
  • Play+
  • PayPal
  • Bank Wire (Bank, wire transfer, and online banking)
  • E-check
  • PayNearMe

How to Bet Online in Pennsylvania

Betting online in Pennsylvania is easy. First you need to make sure you’re at the legal age for gambling, at 21 years old. Also, you need to make sure that the online casino you will be betting at is duly licensed by the state. After ensuring that, you can start registering to the website, log in using your credentials and claim your welcome bonus if there is.

Meanwhile, for casinos that allow test games, you can also opt to try a game and see if it works for you. If you have claimed your bonus, you can choose which game you want to play and bet on, choose a payment method, and bet. How easy is that.

Online Games in Pennsylvania

Currently, there are a total of 19 casinos which are licensed and legal in Pennsylvania. The games they allow and regulate are Online poker, Online casino games (table games & slots), Online Sports Betting, Online lottery, fantasy sports, tablet gaming, video gaming terminals, and Mini-casinos.

Online gambling in Pennsylvania has only been recently legalized but Pennsylvanian gamblers have welcomed it with both hands wide open.

FAQ for Pennsylvanian Players

How do I know if an Operator is Legit and Legal? What should I look for?

You can check it in the bottom of the browser. See if the Pennsylvanian Gaming Control Board seal and an iGaming license number in print.

What is the Gambling Age in Pennsylvania?

Gambling age in Pennsylvania is at 21 years old.