The gambling journey in New Zealand has been complicated over the years but has led to a comfortable and safe practice in the country. There have been times when strict laws were implemented to regulate gambling. However, these days all forms of gambling in the country are regulated and monitored by the Department of Internal Affairs.
There are many different forms of gambling that can be enjoyed in the country. These days, residents and visitors to the country can enjoy lotteries, pokies, horse racing, sports betting and the full casino experience with table games included. Another positive outcome of gambling laws in New Zealand is that residents and visitors can enjoy nearly all the online casinos available online that operate offshore. This leaves Kiwis with tons of options and a huge world of entertainment.
Gambling dates back to the 1800s where gamblers would bet on horse races and other events. Eventually, gambling events were held to raise funds for the community. However, there were times when gambling was prohibited and then overturned. These days, people in New Zealand spend nearly NZ$2 billion on gambling in various forms. Here are some of the biggest contributors to that total:
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Gambling is seen as a recreational activity and tax laws are very lenient. However, given that the gambling industry is lucrative, the public casinos regulated by the government and the other facilities that are allowed to offer gambling machines to the public donate funds to the community. Five of the six casinos in the country are fully operational and open to the public. It’s not difficult to find gambling activities in the country and our team of experts are here to help you along. We believe in having a simple and easy gaming journey. This is especially true when it comes to online gaming that has so many websites to choose from.
Players in New Zealand need to be 20 years or older to legally gamble. Land-based casinos are not the only gambling facilities available to residents and visitors of the country. Online casinos are also widely available as long as the operation is based in another country. The games available at these online casinos are the same games that can be enjoyed at a local casino. There are even live casino options available if players are looking for more human interaction from the comfort of their homes. The variety of games available with local providers are more limited. Kiwis have access to lotteries, sports betting, race betting and gaming machines. There is still a full gaming experience that can be found at one of the local land-based casinos as well. There aren’t many land-based casinos in the country, but the ones on offer are packed with quality entertainment and amenities. Many of these casinos also have hotels, so that coming to the gaming facility can serve as a holiday as well.
When locals choose to gamble with online casinos, these businesses are not operational in the country and are subject to different sets of rules. The online casinos allowed to offer services to New Zealanders will be regulated by regulatory bodies in Malta, the UK, Curacao and other official bodies. These are international websites, but they have also gone further to include the needs of Kiwi players by accepting deposits and allowing withdrawals in NZD.
Another way that these online casinos ensure safety to their customers, is to be regularly audited by an independent company such as eCOGRA. By paying attention to the licensing authority in charge of an online casino, ensures the safety of players. These regulatory bodies have strict requirements for an online casino to be given a gaming license. The licensing information is usually stated at the bottom of the online casino’s homepage and players should be cautious if the information is not clearly stated.
The online casinos that our team of experts at CasinoTop recommend also ensures that the websites offer secure payments. There should be the use of the latest and best encryption technology in use. This ensures that your financial and personal information cannot be viewed by third-parties. There are also various payment options to choose from and some include options where you can make a deposit anonymously.
If you or someone you know is having trouble with managing gambling habits, New Zealand has tons of resources available to assist. Some helplines and websites can be found. The main gambling addiction helpline will also get you in touch with the resources available in your region. These resources offer counselling and advice on how to get your gambling addiction under control or help with tips on responsible gambling practices. Follow the links below to find out more:
New Zealand Department of Internal Affairs
This section focuses on questions that come up often from those that enjoy gambling and others that are looking to start enjoying the activity. Our team of experts have compiled many of these questions with detailed answers to make your journey that much smoother.
Online casinos and land-based casinos offer games such as lotteries, roulette, blackjack, pokies, baccarat, scratchcards, poker and progressive jackpots and so much more.
Yes. There are tons of online casinos available in New Zealand. Online casinos have all the games that a land-based casino has and more.
Players will find more rewards, bonuses and promotions at an online casino. There is always a welcome bonus to take advantage of and ongoing promotions to keep you coming back. Some land-based casinos will grant players complimentary tickets that give them free bets, free meals or other amenities that are available at the casino, hotel or resort.
Table games usually have the best odds given that you can choose how you want to bet. These include games such as poker, blackjack and roulette. When it comes to pokies, spinning the reels is left to chance.
Yes. Players in New Zealand have the freedom to choose an online casino that operates out of other countries. The law states that as long as the operation is not based in New Zealand then players have the freedom to play any of the games. Some land-based casinos may not have all the games players are looking for in one place, whereas online casinos have everything you might need on one website.
All legal gambling activities fall under the Gambling Act of 2003 that states that the only legal gambling activities in the country are those authorized by the government. Gambling has four different classes in New Zealand and is governed carefully to a cap on the maximum winnings and profits.
Gambling activities such as bookmaking and local online casinos are prohibited. Players that are 20 years or older are allowed to gamble at land-based casinos and online casinos. The latter needs to be an online casino that is based offshore. It is illegal for a company in New Zealand to operate an online casino in the country. The marketing and advertising from offshore online casinos are also banned.
Players need to be 20 years old or older to participate in any gambling activity. However, bettors only need to be 18 years old to participate in lotteries, scratchcards and sports betting that includes horse race betting.
Yes. However, it does depend on the online casino you choose to join. Many reputable online casinos will offer NZD through different payment options. If they don’t then the online casino will automatically convert your funds into one of the more popular global currencies such as USD, GBP or EUR.
Yes. Most reputable online casinos will have easy to use payment options available to Kiwis. As long as the online casinos are offshore, there shouldn’t be any issues.
No. When an online casino is fully licensed by one of the main and reputable regulatory bodies in the gaming industry then there’s nothing to worry about. Look out for the eCOGRA logo as well, this shows that an online casino is regularly audited to ensure that all the random number generators are functioning correctly. The RNGs of a game make sure that all the games are kept random and players have a fair chance of winning.
No. There are many online casinos to choose from, but not all of them are above board. Make sure to check out the blacklisted online casinos we have found. If we find that an online casino cannot be trusted for different reasons then we want players in New Zealand to know which of these need to be avoided.
No. Gambling is seen as a recreational activity and is not taxed. Institutions and gaming facilities that are licensed by the New Zealand government are required to donate a portion of their profits to the community, but is still not considered a tax.
Yes. There are six land-based casinos of varying sizes in New Zealand. However, there is one casino that is indefinitely closed.
All gambling activities are overseen by the government of New Zealand. The Department of Internal Affairs oversees the Gambling Commission that controls all regulations for gaming in the country.
All the reputable online casinos that we recommend are fully equipped to handle your issues. The customer support teams can be reached by phone, email or live chat. The government of New Zealand will not be able to step in if anything goes wrong. However, the reputable online casinos are overseen and licensed by reputable gaming authorities. These online casinos only receive their licenses if their features and operation are above board.
If the online casino is audited by an independent company, players also have the option to submit a report of an online casino that they believe are not offering fair, safe and secure gaming options to the public.
Out of the six land-based casinos in the country, four of them are operated by SkyCity. These casinos are located all over the islands and offer great gaming entertainment at whichever facility you choose.
In some cases, yes. If the online casino you choose has a live casino then you may have an option to join a live table game that has other players from New Zealand or other countries sitting at the same table as you. If you’re lucky there might even be a chat section for you to communicate with the dealer and the other players.