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Online Gambling in Canada: Everything You Need To Know

Canadian Gambling Guide

Both local and online casinos welcome most Canadian players. You may be wondering what the legal age for gambling is in your province or perhaps what casino is nearby, or even about gambling laws on taxable income?

We have answered all of this and more. Come and experience an exciting world of online gambling ranging from popular games like slots, poker, blackjack, roulette and baccarat, to the less common live dealer games, video poker and sports betting.

Among other things, we’ll explain:

  • Canadian gambling, province by province
  • Canada’s most popular games to bet on
  • Tips and tricks for gambling in Canada

Canada Gambling Facts

  • Legal gambling age: 18 or 19, depending on province and type of gambling ( click here to see by region)
  • Tax on winnings: not unless you are a professional player whose income is entirely derived from gambling.
  • Land casinos in Canada: quite a few casinos and racetracks, mostly concentrated in the southern territories.
  • Popularity of online gambling: it is becoming more popular as it allows you the freedom to play a wide array of casino games and bet on various sports events, all from the comfort of your home or on a mobile device.

Local Gambling in Your Province

Where Can I Gamble in My Canadian Province?

Alberta

Alberta flag

Minimum legal gambling age: 18

  • Large cities like Calgary each have at least a couple of decent land casinos, and there are quite a few other casinos and gaming venues spread around the province.
  • However, the available online sites provide Alberta players with a larger selection of available table games, slots and lottery options.
  • For a province with quite a few land casinos, there are still plenty of unexplored options available online for Canadian players who want to try something new.

British Columbia

British Columbia flag

Minimum legal gambling age: 19

  • There are many land-based casinos in British Columbia. They are most heavily focused around Vancouver but also exist in most other cities.
  • BC offers lots of horse racing options with five separate race tracks available for enthusiasts.
  • If you are far away from a land casino or racetrack, there are lots of online casino options available to players in BC.

Calgary

Calgary flag

Minimum legal gambling age: 18

  • As one of the larger Canadian cities, Calgary has many land-based casinos and racetracks that offer legal gambling.
  • Calgary players also have lots of online options to bet on poker, sports, roulette and slots, among other games.

Labrador

Labrador flag

Minimum legal gambling age: 19

  • Casino gambling is illegal in Labrador so there are no land-based casinos.
  • There are lotteries and horse racing to gamble on legally.
  • People in Labrador have many options for online casino gambling.

Manitoba

Manitoba flag

Minimum legal gambling age: 18

  • The number of brick and mortar casinos in Manitoba can be counted on one hand, so there aren't too many options for keen players.
  • Bingo and Texas Hold'em are available but generally Manitoba is not a buzzing center of live gaming.
  • Players in Manitoba have tons of online casino, poker and sports betting options available to them.

Montreal

Montreal flag

Minimum gambling age: 18

  • Montreal has a couple of large land-based casinos as well as VLTs (Video Lottery Terminals) and lotteries.
  • In addition to that, Montreal citizens can also access online gaming platforms that offer poker tables and slots, and a wide variety of sports betting.

New Brunswick

New Brunswick flag

Minimum legal gambling age: 19

  • There are only a couple of land casinos in New Brunswick, but there are 2,000 video lottery terminals, which are like slots, and a wide range of lotteries and scratch cards sold in many different locations.
  • For more choice in the casino experience, online casinos are a good bet.
  • The online casinos available to NB citizens are many and diverse. Head to our recommendations page for a full list.

Newfoundland

Newfoundland flag

Minimum legal gambling age: 19

  • Since casino gambling is illegal in Newfoundland there are no land casinos.
  • For people in Newfoundland the best bet is playing at online casinos which offer a wide range of poker, sports betting, casino games and slots.
  • Legal gambling options in Newfoundland include racetracks and lotteries.

Nova Scotia

Nova Scotia flag

Minimum legal gambling age: 19

  • There is a number of large land casinos in the region, and a number of racetrack facilities for those into sports betting.
  • There is also a large number of slots in the casinos, making slots popular with Nova Scotians. Table games like Texas Hold'em are also popular.
  • People in Nova Scotia can also play a wide variety of games at the many online casinos available to them.

Nunavut

Nunavut flag

Minimum legal gambling age: 19

  • There are no live casinos in this very sparsely populated region, and only the occasional video lottery terminal.
  • The most popular option for gambling is the state-run paper-based lottery.
  • Nunavut players' best bet is a gambling site which offers casino games, poker, sports betting and much more.

NW Territories

Alberta flag

Minimum age to gamble: 19

  • There are no land-based casinos in the Northwest Territories, and no government-run sites for gambling.
  • The best options are online gambling sites that offer casino games, poker, sports betting and more.
  • Try our recommended top online gambling sites available for players in NW Territories.

Ontario

Ontario flag

Minimum legal gambling age: 19 (18 for lotteries)

  • There are over 70 land-based casinos in Ontario featuring over 30,000 slot machines and a full selection of table games.
  • Horse racing is also very popular and some of the country’s biggest tracks are located here.
  • For those looking for some diversity or who live far from a casino, Ontario's online gambling sites are a great option.

Ottawa

Ottawa flag

Minimum legal gambling age: 19 (18 for lotteries)

  • As Canada’s capital city, Ottawa boasts a number of casinos in the city and surrounding area.
  • There are also legal lotteries, VLTs (Video Lottery Terminals) and a horse racing track featuring legal betting.
  • Gambling online on poker, casino games, sports betting and more is also available and popular in Ottawa.

Prince Edward Island

Prince Edward Island flag

Minimum legal gambling age: 19

  • There are currently five physical casinos in Prince Edward Island that offer 240 slots and four different table games.
  • Horse racing is also a popular sport to bet on with many of the casinos also featuring racetracks.
  • Online casinos are widely available in PEI offering tons of betting options.

Quebec

Quebec flag

Minimum legal gambling age: 18

  • There are currently 10 different land-based casinos in Quebec, which offer over 6,000 slots and 138 table games.
  • Horse racing is also legal and popular in Quebec with a number of tracks available to bet at.
  • Perhaps the most options open to people in Quebec exist in the online arena. Casino sites offer sports betting, poker, casino and more.

Saskatchewan

Saskatchewan flag

Minimum legal gambling age: 19

  • There are 10 land casinos in Saskatchewan, and the province also offers VLTs and a wide range of paper-based lotteries.
  • If you are living in Saskatchewan and looking for something new, you can also take part in internet gambling sites which allow access to poker, slots, sports betting and others.
  • Saskatchewan players will find much more choice in terms of games, betting options, and playing hours at online gambling sites for Canadian players.

Toronto

Toronto flag

Minimum legal gambling age: 19

  • Although gambling is legal in Ontario there aren’t any casinos in Toronto itself.
  • The closes land-based casinos are in Niagara Falls and near Orillia, both about 80km from Toronto.
  • Woodbine racetrack is located roughly 31km from Toronto.
  • A wide variety of online gambling options are available to players in Toronto.

Vancouver

Vancouver flag

Minimum legal gambling age: 19

  • There are a number of land casinos in and around Vancouver, with the newly-opened Parq Casino downtown offering the most high-end gambling experience.
  • Hastings Racetrack is also located close to downtown Vancouver and offers a full range of betting options.
  • Online gambling sites are popular for players in Vancouver who want to gamble on poker, sports, casino and more.

Yukon

Yukon flag

Minimum legal gambling age: 19

  • There is only one casino in the Yukon, Diamond Tooth Gertie’s Gambling Hall in Dawson City. It features over 60 slots and gaming machines as well as eight different table games.
  • Because it’s a large territory with very few live gambling options, online casinos are the most popular way people in the Yukon gamble.
View our Regional Gambling section to find out more

How to Sign Up to an Online Gambling Site in Canada

Choose a Casino

The first thing you need to do to start playing online is to choose an online gambling site. Picking one is easy if you follow our recommendations of the top online casino sites open to Canadian players.

Open an Account

After deciding where you want to play, you have to open an account. Start by choosing a screen name and providing basic personal information.

For security purposes, you may have to present the site with some documentation, including a scan of your ID card, utility bill, bank statement, or credit card.

Make a Deposit

Choose a deposit method from the casino’s cashier and enter the necessary information to make your first deposit. This is when you can redeem the bonus offered by the casino for signing up.

Play on Computer or Mobile

The best casinos now offer full mobile sites that can be run from most mobile devices, from iPhone and iPad to Android and lots more. That means you can play at home on the computer or out and about on mobile.

Canadians love gambling, no question about it, and in Canada there are tons of options as far as what you can gamble on. In this section we explain all the most popular games and sports that Canadian gamblers like to put action on.

Casino Games

The list of casino games that Canadians are passionate about is long but we’re going to cover the main one here. From roulette to blackjack to video poker, this is the crème de la crème of Canadian casino contests.

Slots
Roulette
Blackjack
Baccarat
Video Poker

Sports

Hockey is the king of sports in Canada, but the list of games Canadians gamble on doesn’t end there. Not by a long shot. All the same sports that are big in the United States also attract a lot of action north of the border. Here are the biggest:

Boxing
Hockey
Football
Basketball
Baseball

Popular Gambling Payment Methods

The most popular payment methods for gambling online are credit or debit cards like Visa and MasterCard. A slightly less popular but still common option is to use eWallets like PayPal and Neteller.

There are also prepaid methods like e-vouchers and prepaid credit cards that let you pre-load a card with funds and deposit directly into your online account. Finally, the newest method on the market is crypto-currency like Bitcoin.

Follow these steps to make an online gambling transaction:

  • 1

    After you’ve signed up for an account, go to the cashier and choose your preferred method of payment to make your first deposit.

  • 2

    Enter the necessary information, such as credit card number, name on card or PayPal email address.

  • 3

    Choose how much you want to deposit and then confirm the transaction.

  • 4

    If all the details were correct the funds will be in your account instantly with most payment methods.

There are a few things to remember in order to maintain a healthy bankroll. First, you have to understand how odds work for different gambling games online.

Online Gambling Tips and Tricks

  • Slots have their own payout rates, which should be in the high 90% range. This is called the slot’s RTP % (Return to Player Percentage). The higher the RTP, the better your odds of winning.
  • Table games all have different odds, depending on the game, and the way you bet on it. The house edge is higher for some game varieties than for others. Blackjack, baccarat and video poker are among the lowest.
  • Sports Betting is a completely different ballgame, and it lets you bet on almost any sport imaginable. There are tons of different bets you can make and lots of room for research and strategy.
  • Pick online casinos with good bonus packages. You can get a lot of value from bonuses and it’s worth comparing them using our reviews to see which is offering the best deals.
  • Gamble online for free at first to check out the games without risking any money.
  • Don't play when tired or drunk. It might seem like a fun thing to do but the truth is, it’s going to impact your ability to make decisions, and not in a good way.

Is Your Gambling Income Taxable in Canada?

When it comes to tax it is always best to check with a tax advisor. However, as the Canadian law stands right now, unless you are the one organizing the gambling activities (in other words, you’re the casino) you will probably not be taxed.

Another exception is if you make a living gambling, like a pro poker player for example. In that case your winnings are taxed by standard income rates. If you’re just a recreational gambler, however, none of your winnings will be taxed.

What to Do When Gambling Becomes a Problem

Gambling can become a dangerous addiction that can damage lives and social relationships. If you feel that signing off is becoming a problem, please refer to some of the resources listed below:

Problem Gambling – an Ontario organization that offers help to gamblers who need it.

Gambling Problem Helpline – a helpline for Canadian players in need of counseling. It can be reached on 1-866-332-2322.

Responsible Gambling – a website offering help to Canadian players who feel they cannot stop playing.

In addition, every Canadian territory has its own Alcohol and Gambling commission website that provides information regarding responsible gaming.

Gambling Jargon

FAQs:

What is online gambling?

Online gambling refers to playing games such as poker, baccarat, roulette, slots and much more through a website. Nowadays online casinos offer thousands of different slots and casino games plus tons of sports betting options.

What are the best online gambling sites?

Finding the best online gambling site might seem like a daunting task, considering the number of existing internet gambling sites. To pick a top site with good bonuses and game choice, head to our recommendations page where we have reviewed the best online gambling for Canadian players.

How old do you have to be to gamble in Canada?

The minimum legal gambling age in Canada is 18 or 19, depending on the type of gambling and where you’re located. The most common legal gambling is 19.

Which slots online pay real money?

Most gambling games online are set up for real money play. While there are free casino games for players to test them out, real money play is far more common in casinos online.

How can I win on slot machines?

There are a couple of tips you can follow to win more often on slots: bet smaller amounts on each spin, pick games with high payout rates, play only at recommended sites, and don't play above your means.

Is sports betting counted as gambling?

Yes. According to Canadian laws, betting on sports is considered gambling.

Disclaimer

The information on this page is offered as a general guide. It does not provide either tax or legal advice, and it should not be used in this manner. Users should seek formal financial and legal advice from an independent provider if they have any questions to do with online gambling activity.

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