Simon’s Guide to Gambling in Cuba

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This is a picture of people in front of the last known casino in Cuba, Plaza Hotel and Casino. This is the header image of my Cuba gambling guide.

Plaza Hotel & Casino – Cuba Gambling Guide

 

Although gambling in Cuba is currently outlawed, the country is definitely no stranger to games of luck. Havana, the capital of Cuba, is considered by many to be the precursor to Las Vegas. In the 1940-1950s Havana was pretty much the world’s largest gambling hub. Casinos were legal at the time and casino licences were granted to companies who invested sufficient amounts of money in tourism (mostly building casino & hotel resorts).

In 1959, shortly after overthrowing Fulgencio Batista, Fidel Castro banned all forms of gambling.* Several casinos and slot machines were demolished, and gambling has been illegal ever since. Still, gambling in Cuba remains a tradition, and games of luck are still played illegally in underground gambling dens.

However, anyone involved in operating an illegal casino may face charges, a fine and possible imprisonment. Players too are be prosecuted and even imprisoned for illegal gambling, though it’s rare. Online gambling is not specifically regulated in Cuba, but is also considered illegal, because of the complete ban on gambling. There are no reports on whether players are prosecuted for participating in online gambling or not. Some foreign, offshore online casino operating outside of Cuba still accept players from the country (see below).

Prior to the ban on gambling, Havana was a huge favourite among American tourists looking to travel, have fun and to play in exotic casino. Experts say there might be a chance of the situation changing and casinos might be returning to Cuba.** Diplomatic relations between the US and Cuba were restored in 2015, which means American tourists are once again free to visit the country. With the huge potential revenue American casino giants will definitely try everything to make Havana the casino gambling hub it once was (the Las Vegas of the Caribbean). How successful these efforts will be, remains to be seen.

 

*Source:Will casinos return to Cuba? (Sun Sentinel)

**Source: American Tourism & Gambling Could Return to Cuba (Thoroughbred Daily News)

 

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Summary:

 

 

Casino gambling in Cuba

 

Online casino gambling in Cuba: illegal

 

Casino gambling is illegal in Cuba, outlawed by Fidel Castro in 1959. Prior to that, Cuba and specifically Havana was a huge centre for casino gambling. Cuban casinos were especially popular among American tourists, who at the time had less opportunities to visit casinos in the USA.

Online casino gambling, although not specifically mentioned, is banned along with all other forms of gambling. Players caught gambling online may be prosecuted, though there are no reports of such cases. Also, internet in Cuba is heavily censored, and many foreign casino gambling sites are reported to be inaccessible.

With the restoration of diplomatic relations with the US, there is some hope of casinos returning to Cuba. Even if that happened, it would take years to build up a competitive casino industry, and experts see no chance of Cuba rivaling, Las Vegas or Macau anytime soon.

Despite the shaky status of online gambling a few online casinos still accept players from Cuba:

A banner advertisement (728x90 pixel) for BGO - Beat The Boss online casino. BGO is one of the many casino, which accept players from Cuba. The animated banner reads: bgo, 200 free spins and 200% bonus, BEAT the BOSS, join now.

BGO casino – accepting players from Cuba

This is a picture of 32 Red's animated GIF banner. 32 Red online casino accepts players from Cuba. The animated GIF reads: 32 Red online casino, sign up now, $10 free no deposit required, Gambleaware.co.Cuba.

32 Red casino – accepting players from Cuba

This is an animated GIF banner ad of the online casino Black Lotus. Black Lotus casino accepts players from Cuba. The animated banner reads: elemental 7, play now, Bonus code: Earth, 10 free spins.

Black lotus casino – accepting players from Cuba

This is the animated GIF banner ad of Lotus Asia online casino. Lotus Asia online casino accepts players from Cuba. The animated banner reads: get $1000 free, download, instant play.

Lotus Asia casino – accepting players from Cuba

 

Bingo in Cuba

 

Online bingo in Cuba: illegal

 

Bingo is a form of gambling, and is illegal in Cuba if done for profit. For profit bingo had legal, but was banned along with all other forms of gambling by Fidel Castro in 1959. There are no legal bingo halls in the country, though illegal clubs may be in operation.

The ban on gambling extends to online bingo as well. However, it is not know whether this is enforced or not.

Despite the legal status of online bingo the following bingo websites accept players from Cuba:

This is an animated GIF banner ad of BGO Bingo. This online bingo ad features Paris Hilton. BGO Bingo online bingo website accepts players from Cuba.The animated banner reads: spend £10, play with £50, BGO Bingo.

BGO bingo – accepting players from Cuba

This is the animated banner ad of 32 Red Bingo. This GIF bingo banner is 728x90 pixels wide. 32 Red bingo is a an online bingo website, which accepts players from Cuba. The animated GIF reads: Get £10 To try the all ne 32 Red Bingo, We've got Penny, Bogof and free bingo, guaranteed prites and loads more, plus all the great slots and jackpots we all love, All that's missing is you.

32 Red Bingo – accepting registrations from Cuba

 

Poker in Cuba

 

Online poker in Cuba: illegal

 

Poker is illegal too, despite the fact that poker is often considered a game of skill and not a game of chance. Poker was banned along with all other forms of gambling by Fidel Castro in 1959 (,which means Cuba considers poker a form of gambling and not a game of skill). There are poker rooms in the country, though illegal clubs may be in operation.

The ban on gambling extends to online poker as well. Cuban citizens operating illegal online poker sites may be fined or imprisoned. However, it is not known, whether players are prosecuted or not.

Despite Cuba’s stance on gambling, a few online poker sites accept players from Cuba:

This is the animated GIF banner ad of 32 Red's online poker website. It is 728x90 pixel wide. Betsafe online poker is one of the many online poker websites, which accept players from Cuba. The animated banner reads: 32 Red 30% rakeback, $1000 welcome bonus, €2500 freerolls.

32 Red online Poker – accepting players from Cuba

 

Sports betting in Cuba

 

Online sports betting in Cuba: illegal

 

Sports betting is currently illegal in Cuba. Sports betting too was banned along with all other forms of gambling by Fidel Castro in 1959. There are no legal betting shops or sportsbooks in the country, though illegal organisations may be in operation.

The ban on gambling extends to online sports betting as well. Cubans operating online sports betting sites may be fined or imprisoned, and players may face prosecution as well. However, a few offshore online sportsbooks accept players from Cuba.

The following online bookmakers accept registrations from Cuba:

This is a banner of 32 Red Sports, the online sportsbook of 32 Red Casino. 32 Red online sportsbook accepts players from Cuba. The animated GIF banner reads: £10 free bet, Place your first bet & get a £10 free bet plus 10 free games on one of our fantastic slots, + 10 free games, 32 Red Sport.

32 Red sport online sportsbook – accepting players from Cuba

 

Lottery in Cuba

 

Online lottery in Cuba: illegal

 

Lotteries are currently illegal in Cuba. Lottery had previously been legal, but was banned along with all other forms of gambling by Fidel Castro in 1959. There are no legal lotteries in the country, but there is an extensive underground lottery. The lottery is called La Bolita, and is immensely popular in the country. Numbers are chosen secretly at certain “bookies”, and interestingly the numbers of La Bolita are the last two digits of the Venezuelan lottery. The government seems to tolerate La Bolita for now, even tough gambling is illegal in the country.

The ban on gambling extends to online lotteries as well. Operators of online lotteries will be fined and/or imprisoned, and players may face prosecution as well. However, some foreign online lotteries let players from Cuba purchase lottery tickets online.

The following websites let people from Cuba purchase lottery tickets online:
Coming soon!

 

Bitcoin gambling in Cuba

 

Bitcoin gambling in Cuba: illegal

 

Bitcoin gambling is not specifically regulated by Cuban laws, but all forms of gambling have been illegal in the country since 1959.

Bitcoin itself on the other hand is not illegal in Cuba. In fact, some expect the virtual currency to solve the country’s difficulties with their current two-currency system.*

The following Bitcoin casinos accept players from Cuba:

I can recommend any Bitcoin casino, that would accept Cuban players right now.

*Source: Bitcoin comes to Cuba. Could it help end the country’s crazy two-currency system? (Quartz)

 

If you have questions or any feedback don’t hesitate to drop a comment below. Please let me know in the comments section if you think we might have gotten something wrong or if you have additional information, clarification about the legal status of online gambling in this country.

 

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This page is part of Simon’s List – Legal Status of Online Gambling – a definitive guide to the legal status of all forms of online gambling activities in every country around the world.

 

Last updated: 2016-07-11

Summary
Simon's Cuba Gambling Guide
Article Name
Simon's Cuba Gambling Guide
Description
This guide focuses on gambling, online gambling and various forms of casino gambling in Cuba.
Author
Simon's Online Marketing Kft.

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