When in Australia: The Dos and Don’ts of Gambling Down Under

Australia is one of the many countries that gamble the most. It is estimated that around 39 percent of adults in this country would gamble in a month. That’s around 6.8 million people in total. The most common ways that people gamble in this country include playing scratch cards, pokies, and sports betting.

Sports betting may have been quiet in the last few months since many sports events around the world had to be either postponed or canceled because of the pandemic. However, many sports events have already started to make a comeback even in Australia. This means that the locals can once again wager on their favorite sports.

However, know that there are still forms of betting that is not legal in the country. You can only place bets on your favorite sports if you’re located outside Australia. When it comes to online sports betting, however, if you are outside of the country and would like to wager on Australian sports events, you can still do so. Just make sure that you choose the right bookie by reading review sites like https://acebettingsites.co.uk.

Australia has quite a history with gambling as the first horse racing meeting in the country happened in1810 in Sydney. The official Australian lottery started in 1881 and the first legal pokies in Australia were registered in 1956. Since then, Australians just really came to love gambling. This is evident with the fact that pokies are now widespread in the country. There are already around 200,000 pokies machines scattered all over Australia. Currently, forms of gambling that are legal in the country are bingo, sports betting, lotteries, and skill games with no element of chance. When it comes to poker, however, it should only be played within licensed casinos that are regulated by the State and Territory gambling regulators.

When it comes to Interactive Gaming or iGaming, Australia is quite strict about this. Australia’s Interactive Gambling Act of 2001 prohibits operators to offer interactive gaming such as online casinos to people who are residing in Australia. This means that online craps, roulette, poker, and blackjack are not allowed to be played in the country.

The Interactive Gambling Act of 2001 sees the following as offenses:

• Providing prohibited interactive gambling services to people or customers in Australia
• Providing unlicensed regulated interactive gambling service to customers in Australia
• Providing an Australian-based interactive gambling service to local customers

Because of the third bullet up there, people get the impression that online gambling is legal as long as a casino operator is located offshore. This is because that’s how online gambling is in big countries like the United States. Online gambling is legal in most states in the US, but the federal law doesn’t exactly ban offshore operators to offer their services to the locals. This is why Americans can still gamble online as they wish as long as the operator is based offshore.

This isn’t the case for Australia, however. The offenses listed above apply to all online gambling providers. This includes the ones located in Australia and offshore or outside the Australian territories. Foreign-owned gambling sites are also not allowed to offer services to the locals. Even advertising online gambling in Australia is illegal. This is also part of the Interactive Gambling Act of 2001. Based on this, it is generally illegal to advertise online gambling activities in Australia in all forms of media, both electronic and non-electronic.

And so, advertising online gambling over the internet, television, radio stations, billboards, and hoardings are considered as offenses. Websites that are specifically made for Australian audiences are not allowed to post any gambling advertisements.

However, for websites that are not specifically made for Australian audiences only, they are part of the exception. The exceptions also include incidental or accidental advertising and political advertising.

Now, when it comes to who is incharge of regulating gambling activities in Australia, each territory has a department in charge. These are the departments that take care of gambling licensing and regulation in each Australian territory.

• Victoria – The Victorian Commission for Liquor and Gambling Regulation and The Office of Liquor, Gaming, and Racing
• New South Wales – NSW Department of Customer Service and the Independent Liquor and Gaming Authority
• Queensland – The Queensland Office of Liquor and Gaming Regulation and the Office of Regulatory Policy
• Australian Capital Territory – The Gambling and Racing Commission
• South Australia – Consumer and Business Services
• Tasmania – The Tasmanian Liquor and Gaming Commission
• Western Australia – The Western Australian Department of Racing, Gaming, and Liquor
• Northern Territory – The Northern Territory Racing Commission and Licensing NT

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