New York Online Gambling
The days of off-limits online gambling in New York are finally over.
Legal sports betting in New York is live, and it is No. 1 in the US. Yet things are less rosy for those who want to play online slots, table games or poker in New York. While bills did merge in early 2022 to authorize New York online casinos, and again in 2023, it will not happen this calendar year. However, proponents aim for 2024 legalization of NY online casinos and online poker in New York.
The state features a robust industry with four commercial casinos, tribal casinos, racetracks and racinos. The New York State budget has been finalized and signed by Gov. Kathy Hochul, which includes three new downstate NY casino licenses. The state issued an official request for applications in January, meaning official licensing could come by the end of 2023. With back-to-back years of gaming expansion, hope remains that the trend will continue in 2023.
Read on for all the latest on legal gambling in New York.
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Legal Gambling in New York
Retail sports betting in NY features 11 different choices available at the four commercial casinos and seven tribal casinos. Betting kiosks will also be accessible to Yankees and Mets fans at Citi Field and Yankees Stadium. However, the 8.3 million in New York City live no closer than two hours away from the nearest location (Resorts World Catskills). Nevertheless, people in western and upstate areas have a wealth of options.
Sportsbook apps are now live in New York. The nine winning sportsbooks include some of the biggest names in the US: DraftKings, FanDuel, Caesars, BetRivers, BetMGM, PointsBet and Caesars. The first eight online sportsbooks launched between January and March 2022, and the ninth NY betting app, Bally Bet, went live in early July. New customers of the New York sports betting market can expect welcome bonuses, promotions and apps.
New York Casinos
NY online casinos are illegal, but New York is home to retail casinos, including tribal venues and racinos. Slots and table games are available at most locations; however, racinos feature video lottery terminals operated by the state lottery. Lawmakers introduced and will discuss bills to legalize online casinos in New York this year, but passage is unlikely. Your best bet is a sweepstakes casinos, or visit NJ and PA, where real money online casinos exist.
New York Lottery allows you to play scratchers, state-based draw games and multi-state draw games like Powerball and Mega Millions. The NY lottery was the first to break over the $10 billion mark for annual revenue. Lottery tickets must be purchased in person in New York. However, you can set up a subscription account with the lottery commission and prepay for a certain number of tickets for future draws.
New York is home to Belmont Park, the venue that hosts the third leg of the Triple Crown. New York is also where the Travers Stakes, hosted by Saratoga Race Course in Saratoga Springs. In addition, Yonkers Raceway is the Yonkers Trot site. New Yorkers are blessed with riches for horse racing venues to visit. There is online horse betting in New York, too, with the best option at TVG.
New York online poker is not legal. However, a bill was introduced to legalize online poker by reclassifying it as a game of skill. Until the vertical is legalized, however, you can legally play at social/sweepstakes poker sites, such as Global Poker. Or you can travel to Pennsylvania and New Jersey to legally play on the WSOP or PokerStars sites. New York is home to several live poker rooms at several casinos in the state.
NY Gambling FAQ
There are several types of gambling that are legal in New York. They are:
- Casinos – commercial and tribal
- Racinos – racing/simulcast/video lottery terminals
- Off-track betting
- Online horse betting
- Retail sports betting
- Online sports betting
- Daily fantasy sports
Either 21 or 18, depending on the activity and the venue. You are required to be 21 years old in order to play at one of the commercial casinos in upstate New York. However, tribal casinos, racinos, and lottery games only require players to be 18. The rules of the house apply when it comes to retail sports betting, but online sports betting will require players to be 21.
New York legalized online sports betting in April 2021. The first sportsbook apps launched Jan. 8, 2022, in time for the start of the NFL playoffs and a month ahead of the 2022 Super Bowl.
No. As is the case with online poker, there are no legal casino sites in New York. Your only options are the social/sweepstakes-type sites that offer slots and table games for free. Some of the best casinos in this genre are Chumba Casino, Luckyland Slots and Funzpoints. A quick trip to nearby states such as Connecticut, New Jersey and Pennsylvania will give you access to a number of real money online casinos as well. That said, bills have been introduced in 2022 and 2023 to legalize iGaming in New York, which would authorize online casinos and online poker.
Not exactly. There are some locations in and around the Big Apple that call themselves casinos, but they are actually racinos — venues with slot-like machines, simulcast betting, and, in some cases, live horse racing. The nearest true casino to New York City in New York is Resorts World Catskills, which requires 2 hours of driving to the northwest.
Daily fantasy sports, or DFS, has long been a topic of debate for gambling proponents and opponents around the country. New York is no exception, and the legality of the activity was murky for some time. That is, until March 2022, when the New York Court of Appeals deemed DFS constitutional in the Empire State. Days later, a bill amendment emerged to potentially bring more DFS operators to the state. As it stands, these brands offer daily fantasy sports in New York:
- Fantasy Draft
- Synkt Games, Inc. d/b/a letsRUMBL
- Fanamana, Inc.
- DataForce, LLC
- RealTime Fantasy Sports
- For Players By Players
- Vauntek, Inc.
- Sports Hub Technologies
- Boom Fantasy
- Fulltime Fantasy Sports, LLC
Daily fantasy sports operators pay a 15% tax on gross gaming revenue. That money goes directly to the New York Lottery fund to provide aid to education to New York’s public schools.
As noted, New Yorkers only have a couple of legal options for playing casino games online. Sports betting sites are a work in progress, but on their way. Still, you might be wondering, “Why can I find online casinos and poker rooms when I search?” Simply put: Those sites are based outside of the US. While they accept New York players, they come with a host of problems that make them a bad idea. For one thing, there is no law permitting them to operate in New York. For another, you don’t have any way to use the state and federal legal systems to help you if anything goes wrong. Finally, you can never be sure if the sites are secure and can keep your information safe from hackers.