Pennsylvania Online Gambling News

The latest on online gambling, sports betting, the iLottery, and more.
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PA sports betting update

PA Sports Updates

UPDATED: Jan. 18, 2020

As the NFL season winds down and the Eagles and Steelers are sidelined, PA bettors can shift their focus to other sports. The return of Sidney Crosby to the Penguins generated some exciting betting opportunities, and NBA and NCAA basketball are also fully underway. Plus, the Super Bowl is right around the corner and you can be sure PA betting apps in PA will seize the opportunity to offer a host of promos.

The first full year of sports betting in PA has come to an end, and the numbers didn’t disappoint. Total handle for 2019 came in at $1.49 billion while revenue reached $84 million.

December’s $342.6 million in handle was a new high for PA. Online betting continues to be the main driver with 87% of bets placed via mobile apps. Once again, FanDuel was dominant, accounting for over half of online handle for the month.

PA online casino update

PA Casino Updates

UPDATED: Jan. 18, 2020

The Divine Fortune progressive jackpot has hit once again, making it 11 times since online casino launched in Pennsylvania last summer. High online gambling tax rates continue to constrict growth in terms of online operators and games on offer. Still, online casino in December experienced a 10.3% boost from November.

Online poker accounted for most of that growth as PokerStars PA shined again in its second month. The only online poker operator in the state has also announced it is following up its successful PACOOP with a Winter Series.

The football-themed series is guaranteeing $675,000 in prize pools from Jan. 25 – Feb. 1 and has cross-promotions with its mobile sportsbook, FOX Bet.

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Online Casino

Nine of the 13 PA casinos will offer some form of online casino gaming. The week of July 15, the first three sites launched. There are now five online casino sites to choose from, with more on the way.

Online Lottery

The PA Lotto still isn’t selling draw games tickets online, but players can take advantage of several dozen online instant win games via browser or mobile app.

Online Sports Betting

The PA online sports betting scene is alive and rapidly growing. Betting on phones is already more popular than retail sportsbooks just a couple months after launching. With several apps to choose from, be sure to take advantage of the best promo offers as sites battle to grab market share.

Mini Casino

This new category of casino, called mini-casinos or satellite casinos, can host up to 750 slots and up to 30 table games. There are five currently in development.

Online Poker

There are currently eight PA casinos intent on launching online poker sites in the state, but only one is up and running. The era of PA online poker began on Nov. 4 when PokerStars PA opened up for business.

Fantasy Sports

The gambling expansion law cemented the legality of fantasy games and daily fantasy sports in PA. Now, popular sites like FanDuel, DraftKings, and Yahoo are regulated by the state and PA residents can enjoy them without worry.

FAQs

Can I play real money casino games online in Pennsylvania?

Yes, but you need to do so on a regulated online gambling site in the state.

What remains off-limits are offshore gambling sites. These sites are not regulated by the states, so they do not offer important consumer protections. They should be avoided at all costs.

On July 15, the first crop of online casinos rolled out offering an array of online casino games, including:

  • Slot machines
  • Video poker
  • Roulette

The current list of live online casino sites stands at:

  • PlaySugarHouse PA
  • Parx Online Casino
  • Hollywood Online Casino
  • PokerStars Casino
  • Unibet Casino

Most sites don’t offer the same game selection as you may find at New Jersey online casinos. Game providers getting up and running in Pennsylvania is taking quite a long time, as the providers need to set up new servers in PA before they can offer games.

How can I tell the difference between a legal and illegal online casino?

A legal Pennsylvania online casino is licensed by the Pennsylvania Gaming Control Board (PGCB). All Pennsylvania online casinos will have an overt and pronounced connection to a land-based Pennsylvania casino.

What type of online gambling is legal in PA?

There are three types of PA online casino licenses:

  • Online slot games
  • Online table games
  • Online peer-to-peer games, like poker

There are other types of online gambling available as well. The PA Lottery offers online lottery games that play like scratch-off tickets. The fantasy sports industry is also allowed to offer online and mobile fantasy events.

As of November 2019, online sports betting is up and running for PA customers with six online sportsbooks. They are:

  • PlaySugarHouse
  • FanDuel Sportsbook PA
  • BetRivers
  • FOX Bet
  • DraftKings Sportsbook PA
  • Parx Online Sportsbook

In November, online poker also launched in Pennsylvania when PokerStars PA started accepting customers on Nov. 4.

What kind of online casino games can you play in Pennsylvania?

You can expect most of the popular games you would find at a brick and mortar casino in Pennsylvania. Most online casinos offer a wide range of slot titles, including many you have probably seen on the casino for.

As for table games, you can expect offerings such as:

  • Blackjack
  • Roulette
  • Craps
  • Baccarat
  • Three Card Poker
  • Video poker
  • Pai Gow
  • Let It Ride

Launch began with a limited number of options, but expect online casinos to add more and more titles as they gain approval form PGCB.

What kind of online poker games are available in PA?

At online poker sites, the majority of the games are going to be Texas Hold’em. There will be a range of options for what kinds of Hold’em games players can take part in.

PokerStars, which is currently the online poker site up and running in PA, offers Hold’em as well as some of the lesser-played games like Stud.

Cash games offer a range of stakes, including much smaller stakes than you can find in a casino. Some stakes are as small as $.01/$.02, while the bigger end of the stakes tends to top off at $10/$20. PokerStars offers stakes up to $25/$50 NLH, but those tables are rarely occupied.

There are also Sit & Gos, multi-table tournaments, and some novelty games unique to each poker site. For example, PokerStars offers Spin & Gos, which take the standard Sit & Go and add a gambling element where players can win a big jackpot.

How old do I have to be to play online in PA?

If you want to play online lottery games or fantasy sports, you need to be at least 18 years old. The sites use things like your Social Security Number to verify your identity and age.

If you want to play at PA online casinos or take part in a PA online sportsbook, you will also need to have your age verified. And you will need to be at least 21 to play.

Do I need to be a Pennsylvania resident to play online?

You do not. You do have to be physically located in the state to play, but residency is not required.

How do I deposit money on a PA casino site?

The specifics won’t be available until the casino sites actually launch. Generally, though, most online casino sites allow deposits via a range of options, such as:

  • Credit cards including Visa and MasterCard
  • Electronic checks (ACH deposits)
  • Cash deposits at the partner land-based casino
  • Online payment processors such as Skrill or PayPal
  • Prepaid debit card

Resources

Online Sportsbook Options

PA Lottery Mobile App

The specifics won’t be available until the casino sites actually launch. Generally, though, most online casino sites allow deposits via a range of options, such as:

  • Credit cards including Visa and MasterCard
  • Electronic checks (ACH deposits)
  • Cash deposits at the partner land-based casino
  • Online payment processors such as Skrill or PayPal
  • Prepaid debit card

Keno

Keno was the first element of gaming expansion to go live in Pennsylvania. The numbers game, which is run by the Pennsylvania Lottery, launched at bars and taverns across the state in May and is quickly growing in popularity.

Off-Track Betting

Pennsylvania has had off-track betting parlors for years. With the advent of sports betting though, these facilities are also able to offer sports betting. Currently, both the South Philadelphia Turf Club and The Oaks offer a retail sportsook in addition to off-track betting options.

Video Gambling Terminals (VGT)

Video gambling terminals (VGTs) bring many of the fun and games of a casino to a single machine at Pennsylvania truck stops. These multi-game VGTs are in the process of launching at qualifying truck stops across the state.

PA Virtual Sports

For those who want a sports betting-esque experience at any time, there are Xpress Sports from the PA Lottery. These games simulate virtual (and fictional) football drives or car races and allow customers to bet on the outcome.

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