Gambling Around The World – Are There Any Rules When It Comes to Age


There are some countries in the world that still prohibits gambling but majority are however open to it and have laws in place to regulate the activities. Countries such as the UK, Spain, Germany, and some other European countries represent the largest market for gambling.

However, there are other countries that still ban any form of gambling. Online gambling for instance remain banned in countries like Russia, Czech Republic.

They also have written laws, which restricts players, but regulating players for playing on foreign site remains difficult.

Whichever country in Europe you decide on to play casino or sport betting, it’s advisable to be 18 years old and up before you start. Although, certain countries in Europe have a different age requirement for gambling.

For instance, countries like Germany, Ireland and Belgium, have legal age for gambling set to 21 and above. In Greece the legal gambling age is 23 and 25 years old in Portugal. These two countries are where the legal gambling age is older than the general age of 18 and 21. But, If you’re a foreigner and wish to play casino or other sport betting in Portugal, you should be at least 18 years old.

In the US gambling is not uniformly legalized state-wide, and you’re expected to be atleast 21 years of age to play for real money. State like Alaska, Idaho, Minnesota and Wyoming are the states where you’d be allowed to play real-money games if you’re over 18 years old. There are differences in the legal age required depending on the state you’re in. There are casinos both online and live that you could visit in most of the states.

Is there a general and acceptable Gambling Age Worldwide?

Every country has its specific gambling laws and age restrictions – an important thing you should keep in mind when you go gambling somewhere abroad.

Gambling In The USA

Gambling in the United States, is not all about Las Vegas. You can gamble in almost all the states as long as you meet up with the state’s gambling age. Generally, the age varies from 18 to 21. But there’s something much more than the age restrictions in the United States. Let’s have a look:

In Alabama, for example, you can not go in to place bets with a minor whether the minor is playing or not, you’re committing a misdemeanour. And this types are controlled by juvenile laws. Charities can operate casino nights in Arizona. Horse-racing is forbidden for any person under 18 in Arkansas to act as a patron of the pari-mutuel or certificate system of wagering conducted or supervised by it. But this doesn’t mean you can’t attend horse races at all.

When it comes to offline gambling, Delaware is the state with the strongest set of restrictions. You must be 18 to participate at the State Lottery, however, you could easily buy a ticket if you’re 18 and above year-old and give it as a gift to a younger person. The State Lottery has VLTs at racetracks – the age limit to play slots and at casinos is 21.

These are just a few examples of the different gambling laws in the US as it applies to each state.

Now, let’s look at Europe

Gambling in Europe

In most countries in the United Kingdom the legal age is around 18-2. You need to be 18 to take part in any gambling activities including to play online bingo legally. There might be need for a review of the legal age including more strict rules as under age betting is seen to be increasing in some places in Europe.

Gambling in Japan?

Going to Japan to gamble? You better think twice. Casino gambling is illegal in Japan and you might get into big trouble if you try. But, Yakuza (organized crime syndicate) operates brick-and-mortar casinos throughout the country, plus some illegal mobile casinos, regardless of the law. An interesting fact is that there are other forms of gambling that are legal, and this includes:

Motorcycle Racing

Powerboat racing

Horse Racing

Bicycle Racing

This also includes pachinko games – Japanese pinball gambling games that are fun, interesting and preferable leisure activity for both natives and foreigners. Today, in Japan, this industry is believed to be 30 times more profitable than the Las Vegas Casinos! The age of adulthood in Japan is 18, however, if you want to participate in gamble, you have to be above 20 years of age.

This has been discussed and implemented in the law by the Japan Government. You cannot take part in the activities listed above if you’re under 20, except for pachinko – 18-year-olds can still play even after the age revision. This idea is not quite approved by the general public as it is seen as a bad influence on the country’s youth, however, time will show where this would lead to.

The Mecca of Gambling – Monte Carlo

Looking for the most famous casino in the world? Monte Carlo is like heaven for gamblers. And Casino de Monte-Carlo is the most famous casino in the world. It offers an unforgettable experience to all visitors and gamblers around the world. You must be 18 to gamble at the casino. And the private salons there require that you wear a black tie. Additionally, if you plan to gamble and stay for a while, you can come across some of the top luxury accommodations in the world as well, each of which has striking panoramic vistas and plenty of amenities nearby.

Macau – The Biggest Competition!

We’ve mentioned Las Vegas, Japan and Monte Carlo, but Macau is one place you don’t want to omit when mentioning “gambling around the world”. This is the place with numerous casinos that are definitely a tough competition to beat, as this is the solid backbone that holds up the city’s tourist economy and gains popularity worldwide as one of the top gambling destinations.

Most of the best-known casinos are housed in top-class hotels, including Hotel Lisboa Casino, Macau Palace Casino and more. All casinos are accessible, but keep in mind that you have to be a little done up – a smart dress is preferable for the casinos, it’s even a must! If you’re a tourist, you can play casino at 18. But, if you’re a local – you cannot get in and place bets until you’re 21!

Gambling Age in Other Popular Destinations

When you go on vacation to a popular destination, you’re probably a little curious whether you could enter the casinos there for a game or two. There are some exotic places where gambling is either forbidden or it’s a part of the culture.

Gambling Age in Popular Tourist Destinations Around the World

Country: Minimum Age:

Antigua and Barbuda 18

Aruba 18

Denmark 18

Egypt 18 (many casinos are for foreigners only)

Finland 18

Greece 23 (the oldest after Portugal with 25)

New Zealand 20

Norway 18

Singapore 21

Sweden 18

The Bahamas 18 (by law 21)

South Africa 18

Nigeria 18

Ghana 18


Be Responsible! Gambling age is different everywhere, there are different laws that can be either strict or non-existent. Whatever the case, as a player, you should know and follow the customs of the country you’re visiting. Offline and online Casinos worldwide are regulated and licensed by the respectful gambling commission and there are strict safety measures to keep you out of trouble. Self-control is very important for both your health and wallet. Casinos, both land-based and online, strive to prevent addiction and gambling abuse and praise responsible gambling anywhere in the world.


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