Online Casinos in England
However, there are some issues. Recent law changes have made this a somewhat confusing industry for UK players, who find themselves asking why a popular casino is not available to them.
In this guide on Top England Casinos we will show you what those changes were and what they mean for English casino players, while also showing you how to find the very best casinos for players in England and across the United Kingdom.
There are many great online casinos and sportsbooks in this country. That’s because there is a large concentration of gamblers in England. Gambling is such a huge part of life here that the casinos are almost guaranteed to get a lot of interest from customers.
The advertising also plays a huge role, as there are very few restrictions on how much they can advertise and on where they can advertise, as there usually is in other countries. It is very easy for these casinos to establish themselves, to find their place in the UK market and to spread their wings from there.
England Online Gambling Laws
There has been a lot of confusion regarding the online gambling laws in England in recent years. Not so long ago, this was considered to be one of the most relaxed countries where gambling was concerned, and that applied to all forms of gambling. However, there was a change in 2014 that threatened to upset the balance and caused a shift that affected even the highest rated online casinos in the UK.
In simple terms, this change meant that all forms of gambling were regulated. For many years England simply taxed gambling operators within the country. Whether they existed as bookmakers in the high-street or on the race track, they all paid taxes. This was often added to your bet/return as a customer and it frustrated the consumer no end.
Online gambling changed this because the companies offering this form of gambling were based overseas, which means they didn’t have to abide by UK tax law. What the law change in 2014 essentially did was force these overseas companies to pay tax, even though they were not operating in the country.
For the most part, gambling is still legal and it is still widely available. But this change made life harder for online casinos and sportsbooks, and in turn many of them made life harder for the gamblers. As a result, many of the bigger casinos simply stopped offering services to gamblers in England, while others created separate casinos to cater for players in England.
Legal Gambling in the United Kingdom
England is under the jurisdiction of the United Kingdom. There are some changes between the laws in UK countries, but for the most part they are the same. This means that the gambling laws in England are the same as they are in Wales, Scotland and Northern Ireland. There are also many similarities in the Republic of Ireland but while this is classed as part of Great Britain, it is not part of the UK.
The gambling laws in England often come as a surprise to people in countries where gambling is more restricted. The following will give you an idea:
- Offline Gambling: There are bookmakers in high-streets across the country. You don’t need to go far to find these and you can bet on sports, while also playing electronic gambling games and machines known as Fixed Online Betting Terminals.
- Tracks: There are hundreds of greyhound race tracks and horse racing tracks throughout the country. Each of these has many gambling operators trackside.
- Casinos and Poker Rooms: There are many casinos and poker rooms throughout the country, with the only restriction being that you need to be over 21 to enter.
- Gambling Age: In many cases, you only need to be 16 to gamble. At this age you can play the lottery and while you need to be 18 to place a bet at a sportsbook, it’s rare that such things are checked.
- Arcades: There are many arcades across the country that can be accessed by young children. These are mostly filled with video games. But there are also machines that basically allow you to gamble for pennies (most arcades also have slots, but these are in separate areas and you need to be 18).
- Advertising: In Australia, where gambling is legal, it is illegal for gambling companies to advertise their services. Governments can be very picky about this, but in the UK advertising is everywhere, from TV to billboards to football jerseys.
Why Are So Many England Casinos Based Overseas?
As mentioned above, many online casinos in England are based overseas to get around tax laws that used to exist. These casinos are still based overseas even after these changes because it tends to be cheaper and also allows them to get through many other money-saving laws, both in the United Kingdom and elsewhere.
The Channel Islands are one of the most popular places for these casinos to be based. It is close, but because they are tax havens they can still take advantage of money-saving laws and keep those profits high. Countries like Malta and Gibraltar, also with close connections to the United Kingdom, are also home to many great online casinos and other gambling sites.
What Makes a Good England Casino?
There is so much competition for online casinos in England that you should be able to get very impressive bonuses. In fact, the biggest bonuses out there can be found on casinos that predominantly cater for the UK market, including the likes of WilliamHill, BetWay and Bet365.
And there is something else that those casinos have in common that you need to keep an eye out for: reputation. Because of the history of gambling in this country, it’s easy to find casinos and gambling companies that are very well respected and these are the ones that you should focus on.
Generally, these casinos are bigger, better, more comprehensive and more state-of-the-art. So, what makes a good English online casino is what makes a good online casino in general. It is the ability to offer everything that a player could ask for and that’s why these casinos are some of the biggest and best and why England is such a big country where online casino gambling—and online gambling in general—is concerned.
What Makes a Bad England Casino?
Competition comes into play here as well. There are so many English casinos that offer players everything they could ask for, so a casino that doesn’t offer a lot is a casino that is cutting corners and one that you should avoid. To be fair, there are very few casinos like this out there and the ones that do exist simply don’t last very long.
An English casino that doesn’t tick all of the boxes, doesn’t offer big bonuses and great games and doesn’t have the best software, is a casino that you should avoid. After all, with so many great options out there for players based in England, there is simply no need to choose one of these “lesser” casinos.