Besides being a major part of the United Kingdom economy, gambling is a much-loved pastime for millions of Brits. Luckily for residents of the country, the activity is legal for anyone 18 years or older, and the government goes to a great extent to protect the players.
Read on to learn more about the country's gambling laws and online wagering regulation in this article. We will also be telling you where to find the best online casino sites for UK players.
The United Kingdom has a long-standing history in gambling that goes back to several centuries ago. The earliest form of gambling in the country is believed to have taken place around 2000 years ago when the Romans conquered Britain in 43AD. The Romans would regularly wager on dice games and sporting events like boxing and chariot racing.
However, the activity did not become a popular recreational activity for the masses until late in the 16th century. At the time, the rich would wager on horse racing, card games, and chess while the lower class bet on dice games. The beginning of the 17th century saw the introduction of organised horse racing and wagering on races.
Throughout history, the country has made several efforts to make gambling safe for its people by regulating it. Nevertheless, it wasn't until the 1960s that the government authorised commercial Bingo halls, betting shops, and commercial casinos with table games to offer legal wagering services. The initial laws were pretty stringent but after several adjustments, the operators were allowed to offer their services in a more welcoming and comfortable environment.
The United Kingdom legalised online gaming through the Gambling Act of 2005. As already mentioned, the legal gambling age in the UK is 18 years, and it applies to all forms of internet wagering including online casino gaming, virtual poker, lotteries, bingo, and sports betting.
The Act also paved the way for the establishment of a Gambling Commission to regulate commercial operators. The United Kingdom Gambling Commission was formed in 2007. As the regulatory authority, the Commission supervises all the real-money gaming businesses operating in England, Ireland, Wales, and Scotland to ensure that they are fair, honest, and transparent in their dealings. It is also the Commission's work to protect minors and other vulnerable people from possible gambling harm and to crack down on illegal wagering activities.
The United Kingdom is possibly one of the best countries when it comes to legal gambling sites for many reasons. Firstly, all real money casino sites in the country are licensed and regulated by the Commission, which means that you can trust them for safety and fairness.
The other thing is that Britain's online casinos offer a huge variety of promotions to their players. You will also be pleased to know that the offers are pretty straightforward. Examples of available incentives for British players include no-deposit bonuses, welcome promotions, reload offers, free spins bonuses, cashback offers, and loyalty or VIP programs.
What's more, players can use mobile devices like smartphones and tablets to gamble at the top UK online casinos. You can use our legal casino guide and detailed reviews to find the best sites for players in England and other parts of the United Kingdom.
Players in the United Kingdom are spoilt for choice when it comes to virtual casino games. Real-money gambling sites in the country are allowed to partner with a majority of the leading software providers in the industry for their games. The available genres include classic and video slots, jackpots, several varieties of table and card games, bingo, instant win scratch cards, lotto, and live casino games. A majority of UK online casinos also offer sports betting.
The best gambling sites in the UK provide their customers with a wide variety of safe banking methods for payment. Some of the options that are available for deposit include MasterCard debit, Visa Debit, Visa Electron, Maestro, PayPal, Skrill, Neteller, Paysafecard, Bank Transfers, and cryptocurrencies. The main currency used at gambling sites in the United Kingdom is the GBP, but you can also deposit and wager using the Euro. With regard to withdrawals, a majority of operators allow their customers to withdraw their winnings using the method they used to fund their accounts. On average, it takes between one and three days to receive your profits after submitting a withdrawal request.