Simon’s Guide to Online Casinos in Romania

The interior of Casa Venescu, in which Palace Casino is located

Palace Casino in Bucharest

 

This is a guide to brick and mortar as well as online casinos in Romania. Find out what the best casinos and online casino sites are in Romania, or learn more about the legal status of casino gambling in the country.

Online casinos in Romania

Legal status: legal, requires a licence

Online casino gambling is legal in Romania. In theory, it has been legal for several years: the Government Emergency Ordinance of 2009 set the basis for the introduction of legal, regulated online casino gambling in Romania.

Although online casino gambling has been legal for several years, it was only recently that the means for receiving an online casino gambling licence were put in place. As a result of pressure from the European Commission to change the prohibitive and restrictive regulation, the Government Emergency Ordinance was amended in 2013.

It was this amendment that resulted in the creation of the National Gambling Office, the supervising body of online casino gambling in Romania. Online casino operators could, at last, actually apply for licences and offer their services legally in Romania.

There are currently three types of licences a gambling operator may obtain from the National Gambling Office. Class 1 licences are for online gambling operators, while Class 2 licences are valid for providing both online and traditional gambling services. Class 3 licences are reserved for providers of lottery-style games.

Unlicensed online casino operators are banned and may be blocked by internet service providers. On top of that, gamblers who play on online casino sites that are not licensed in Romania may face a small fine for doing so. However, such measures are rather difficult to enforce, and due to the long time it took Romania to licence online casino operators, a large percentage of the local players have opted to play on international online casino sites instead of their Romanian counterparts.

 

 

 

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Online casinos accepting players from Romania

 

Here’s a selection of online casinos I’ve tried and recommend wholeheartedly. Choose from these trustworthy online casinos available in Romania, or read on to find out more about the legal status and history of gambling and casinos in Romania!

 

 

Land-based casinos in Romania

 

Land-based casinos are legal in Romania, and unlike online casinos, have been for some time. Casino gambling was legalised in Romania after the fall of of communism in 1990. The first casino to open in the country was the Casino Bucharest in 1991, located in the capital of Romania.

The Romanian casino regulations differ from those of most other countries in that casinos do not pay a single fee per establishment (plus a percentage of revenues), but rather have to licence and pay the appropriate fee for each and every gaming table and machine. As a result, land-based casinos in Romania are usually more on the small side.

There are currently about 15 casino gambling establishments in operation in the country, but some of these can not be considered proper casinos due to the fact that they have no gaming tables, only slot machines. Slot machines can also be found throughout the country, not only in the aforementioned electronic casinos.

Most of the Romanian casinos – including the largest one, Casino Palace – are located in the country’s capital, Bucharest. Palace Casino operates in the historical monument Casa Vernescu. The casino has 14 gaming tables where American Roulette, Poker and Blackjack may be played. Casino Palace also hosts about 100 slot machines with progressive jackpots.

Apart from the actual casino games, Palace Casino also contains a restaurant and offers other entertainment in the form of various events and parties.

 

 

Other forms of online gambling in Romania

 

The recent changes in Romanian online casino regulations also affected many of the various other online gambling markets in Romania. With the issues now more or less settled, both local and international online gambling companies may apply for Romanian online gambling licences. Many unlicensed online gambling operators still offer their services for Romanians as well, but their sites may be blocked by ISPs.

Online poker is one of the most popular forms of gambling in the country. The larges online poker operators such as PokerStars jumped on the opportunity to obtain a Romanian online poker licence quite early, which has resulted in an abundance of options for Romanian poker players. The Romanian online poker market is connected to the global player pool, unlike in many countries such as France.

Online sports betting is also legal, with licensing open to both local and international companies. The most popular sports to wager on are football, handball, basketball and, perhaps surprisingly, rugby. While there have been talks of taxing punters as well as operators, online sports betting in Romania is curently tax-free for players.

Lottery is a national monopoly in Romania, but the national lottery, Loteria Romana, currently does not offer any of its games online. International lotteries are, in theory, banned, but players generally face no repercussions.

 

 

 

History and future of online casinos in Romania

 

Online casinos were theoretically legalised in Romania in 2009, but until 2013 there was no way for online casino operators to actually get licensed. Romania is a member of the European Union, and EU regulations do not allow discriminative practices, which means Romania was forced to open up its online casino market to international operators as well.

As the online casino market opened up, strict laws were also replaced by somewhat more lax ones. Previously, all winnings were taxed at 25%, but this tax rate now only applies when winnings exceed €100000. Under RON 600 (€133) the tax is only 1%, making the system much more friendly towards casual players.

In other aspects, the regulations remain quite strict. Romania places great emphasis on preventing gambling addiction. Those participating in online casino gambling at least twice over 12 hours receive an e-mail warning about the dangers of online casinos, and players may ask for and receive voluntary bans as well.

Overall, with the increased adherence to EU regulations and norms, Romania seems to be headed in the right way; towards a liberated yet safe online casino gambling market.

 

 

 

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This article supplements the general guide to the legal status of gambling in Romania.

 

Simon’s Guide to Land-based and Online Casinos in Romania is part of Simon’s Online Casino Guide.

 

Last updated: 2017. 02. 13.

 

Gamble responsibly,
SimonTheSorcerer

Summary
Simon's Guide to Land-based and Online Casinos in Romania
Article Name
Simon's Guide to Land-based and Online Casinos in Romania
Description
A guide to the legal status of online gambling and online casinos in Romania, including the recent changes and future of the Romanian online casino market.
Author
Simon's Online Marketing Kft.

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