Are Online Casinos Legal in South Africa?

We’ll be entirely honest with you – no, they are not. Any form of online casinos is illegal no matter if you operate them or advertise them. Running an online casino in South Africa is punishable by heavy fines and even prison. The situation of online casinos in South Africa is covered in detail by CasinoHex and for more details, you can check out Casino HEX.

History of gambling in South Africa

The history of gambling in South Africa is complicated. When Africa was founded as a nation, it was prosperous enough to allow gambling. That was until 1956, where the South African government banned all forms of gambling. It backfired immediately, as the roots of gambling started spreading into the black market. To make amends, the government legalized gambling in 1966 with its ‘National Gambling Act’.

In 1966, however, no form of online gambling existed and thus it wasn’t included in the act. It took years of protest and appeal from online gamblers after which the government was forced to legalize online gambling again. However, the only thing they ended up making legal wasn’t online casinos. It was online betting. Online casinos weren’t considered and thus, were excluded from legality. Appeals started again to legalize online casinos until 2010, where the government finally declared online casinos entirely illegal once and for all, except for horse racing and betting on sports through online methods.

As of now, any business or bank in South Africa that is situated in South Africa and permits the operation of casinos online and any media that advertises such casinos are both punishable by R 10 million or 10 years of imprisonment.

But worry not because there is a bypass through which citizens can easily play online casinos.


How To Gamble On Online Casinos In South Africa

The act states that casinos which in strict terms are online but more importantly are operated or advertised in South Africa are not legal. That being said, prohibition for casinos that operate outside the country is not allowed. These foreign platforms don’t fall under their jurisdiction. Therefore they can be used by anyone who wants to gamble at online casinos with ease. South Africa’s government plans on taking action on these foreign situated casinos but to date, nothing of consequence has happened which makes us believe that they might be nothing but bluffs.

The only thing you are required to worry about gambling on the various available online casinos in the country is finding a good, and safe casino that works under a valid license. We suggest that whatever casino you do decide to play at, make sure it holds a valid gambling license. There are innumerable shady sites in this that implement malpractices and unfair methods that cheat people off their money. It’s recommended that you research thoroughly about the various online casino gambling sites before you spend any kind of money on them.

There are various sites like CasinoHex, mentioned earlier, that go through gambling sites, verify them with their team of professionals, and tell you which gambling site is the most recommended and safe in regards to security.


Things to ensure before playing online casinos

There are several factors that you must remember in mind before you indulge in any sort of online casino gambling so that you have an optimal gambling experience.


Online casinos that don’t have any kind of gaming license, or have one that is not verifiable by proper standards are a big NO. Players that play at an online casino, are giving them their real money for safekeeping and use. Casinos that aren’t licensed have the ability to steal your money, vanish and never appear again and you can’t do anything about it. The matter of the fact is that online casinos without a proper verified license are unreliable and should not be played at all costs.


When you arrive at an online casino lobby, take note of what games they have. The more games they have, the better variety you get. Casinos are known to have several games, anything ranging from slots to poker, blackjack, and whatnot. You can travel the extra mile of caution by researching about the developers thoroughly to ensure they are legal and verified or just to see which games are made by your favorite developers that you trust.


Since online casinos are such a big enterprise, they can have multiple payment options. These payment options are your card payments or your internet wallets like Paypal and even cryptocurrencies which are accepted by many online casinos. Ensure reading reviews of the casino you end up deciding, especially on the point of the withdrawal of your money. The last thing you want is winning tons of money but being unable to withdraw it in time. It’s worth noting that several online casinos have amazing discounts or freebies for new members as a joining bonus. It is extremely recommended that this bonus should be availed by you whenever possible.


Extra tips for playing in online casinos

  1. We deem it essential that you organize your identification documents ready for verification on sign-up. You’ll require an ID that has your date of birth on it stating you are not underaged i.e. below 18.
  2. If you require your withdrawal money in checks rather than an online payment portal, you should be aware of the fact that it will take a much longer time than it would if you withdraw your winnings online.
  3. Since online casinos aren’t legalized even with foreign platforms, there is a big chance your winnings would be applicable to tax.
  4. For playing and winning your money in South African Rands, you should search for ZAR online casinos that let you bet and receive your winnings in Rands.
  5. Always remember that while gambling is perfectly fine as a hobby, if it starts bordering on obsession, that’s where you need to pull the line and stop. Gambling addiction is real and can be very detrimental to your life if you don’t keep your gambling in check.

Check out independent websites offering information about online casinos; these are run by experts who evaluate the fairness and legality of a casino independently of its operators or marketing teams, so they can usually give a clear picture of what kind of experience awaits players when they sign up to play at


From this article, we hope you got to know the reality of the situation in South Africa regarding gambling in online casinos. If this article helped you in any way, do consider following our website for regular updates as it will help us out immensely.

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