Australian Online Casinos

australian-online-casinosSome see it as a cultural tradition, while others think it represents a symbol of the country’s rebellious spirit. For some, it’s nothing but a mere addiction, but no one can deny that gambling, both land-based and online, is one of the hottest topics in Australia.

According to various stats and analyses, AU has the world’s highest per capita losses from legal gambling. The fact that over 80% of residents are involved in this activity earned the Land Down Under the title of gambling capital of the world.

Perhaps it comes as a surprise, but New South Wales is the first state after Nevada in number of gambling machines. Nevada has a bit over 181,000 gambling machines, whereas NSW has 95,800 pokies all over the state.

Due to such large popularity, AU is dealing with an extremely high rate of gambling-related harms. That’s why the state is putting continuous efforts into presenting more and more rigorous measures for player protection.

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Gambling Laws in Australia 

gambling-laws-in-australiaAustralia doesn’t have a single overarching authority in charge of regulating and supervising gambling throughout the entire region. Instead, this activity is regulated at both the State/ Territory and Federal levels. This means that each of the mainland’s eight areas represents an individual gambling jurisdiction.

Here’s the list of key regulatory institutions:

Each of these territories has its own regulations in charge of governing a specific sector, such as casino gambling, lotteries, sports betting, various types of racing, and so on.

In addition to these, there’s the Australian Communications and Media Authority (ACMA). Established in 2005, this institution is responsible for collecting broadcasting, radiocommunication, and telecommunication taxes and regulating Australian media.

Tax Rates in the Gambling Industry of Australia 

Players are not required to pay taxes on their winnings, for a couple of reasons. The government treats this activity as a recreational, not as a source of income. The way authorities reason it, even if a person is lucky enough to win big from gambling, chances are they’ve also lost a considerable amount of money while gambling. Plus, taxes are imposed on casinos, which is another reason why consumers are not required to pay them.

As for the taxes for operators, the following rates per state/territory apply:

Is Online Gambling Legal in AU? 

The very first traces of online gambling legalization in AU date back to the 1990s, with Victoria and Tasmania being among the first regions to offer licenses.

Based on the Interactive Gambling Act of 2001, online gambling in Australia is prohibited. Australian operators are not permitted to offer eGaming services (casino games, bingo, and poker) to local clients, except for sports betting.

Fifteen years later, the Act was amended, to include the rule that prohibits offshore online companies from accepting local players unless they are licensed in that very jurisdiction. The amendments were approved in March 2017, and they officially came into effect in September 2017.

What Sort of Games Do Aussie Players Prefer? 

what-sort-of-games-do-aussie-players-preferIf there’s one thing linguists worldwide would agree upon, it’s that AU slang is the richest, and the liveliest version of English that can be heard.

Pokie is a popular abbreviation for a slot machine and is definitely one of the most popular gambling-related words originating from AU, and it’s the favorite game genre among punters from this region. Yes, “punter”, the very same word we use for “player” also comes from the Land Down Under.

Housie is another AU slang, referring to Bingo games. Instead of the American variant, which is played with 75 balls, the AU variant features 90 balls. Other than these, Ozzies also like to play Blackjack, poker, video poker, and Roulette.

Best Payment Methods for Australian Players 

Wanting to make its own contribution to ensuring a higher level of safety, the Australian Banking Association launched a consultation in December 2019. Aside from assessing the risks of gambling on credit, the Association also wanted to gain opinions on what restrictions could be imposed in order to reduce the issues.

A couple of months later, the National Australia Bank (NAB) presented a tool that allows consumers to use the app to block gambling transactions made via credit and/or debit cards. In September 2023, the Federal Government suggested a ban on the use of credit cards and cryptocurrencies for gambling purposes should be introduced.

When it comes to commonly used methods, Aussie players use the following options:

As for the status of cryptocurrencies in AU, they are neither legal nor illegal but are simply not fully legalized. They don’t have the status of a legal tender, as fiat currencies do, but they can be used for personal and business transactions. It is predicted that this asset will have a bright future in AU, as the number of users is on a continuous rise.

Responsible Gambling Measures in AU

Having in mind how widely spread gambling in Australia is, it was of vital importance for this region to come up with multiple player protection measures.

The very first steps taken had to do with advertising. In July 2013, a ban on live broadcast of odds during sports events in South Australia was announced, scheduled to come into force a month later. A couple of months after that, SA came up with a plan to create an online watchlist of gambling-related content for social and mobile apps not suitable for individuals below the legal gambling age.

In 2015, the government expressed its support to guidelines that oblige operators to accept wagers that pay out AU$1k or less. The same set of guidelines instructs larger bookmakers to set a minimum bet limit of AU$ 2,000. The very same year, Intralot Australia presented a voluntary pre-commitment scheme across 28,500 gaming machines in Victoria. Named YourPlay, this initiative allows consumers to adjust spending and time limits before the playing sessions begin.

In January 2017, the South Australian government decided to reduce the max stake on poker machines to AU$5 per play. Continuing to work on measures that aim to reduce the level of gambling-related harm, the State Government of Victoria unveiled The Gambling Regulation Amendment Bill 2017.

As far as defined, the daily cash withdrawal limit is set at AU$500. The same document contains instructions on the number of gaming machines permitted in a single venue. On top of that, the same Bill prohibits gambling advertisements from being placed within 150 meters of schools, encompassing roads, and public transport.

Furthermore, in August 2018 the ACMA tightened up measures regarding broadcasting of gambling-related ads during live sports events to include Internet streaming services as well.

2019 brought a couple of more significant changes, as the Federal Government presented new measures related to ID verification of customers. Instead of 90, operators were given a maximum of 14 days to verify a player’s identity.

In May this year, the project called “The National Consumer Protection Framework” came into effect. As a result of cooperation between the governments of New South Wales, Queensland, South Australia, Tasmania, Victoria, and Western Australia, this initiative aims to establish more rigorous standards that aim to minimize harm and ensure a higher level of safety. The very same year brought the launch of the country’s National Self-Exclusion Register, as another measure to reduce the harm caused by excessive gambling.

Worth noting is that Australia is also in cooperation with other regulators and relevant institutions. In January 2020, the Australian Transaction Reports and Analysis Centre (AUSTRAC) signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with the Great Britain Gambling Commission. Previously, an MoU was penned with the US, Canada, New Zealand, and China.