Considered the premier online gambling jurisdiction in the world, the UK Gambling Commission oversees some of the highest-rated, top-performing online casinos in operation today. Thanks in large part due to the passing of the UK Gambling Act of 2005, Great Britain has become the epicenter of online gambling. And, the U.S. continues to generate greater numbers on the online casino and poker gambling fronts, despite the Unlawful Internet Gambling Enforcement Act (UIGEA). In fact, it is the UK jurisdiction that is calling forth an exodus of online casinos seeking the "Best UK Casino" title.
On the other hand, the UK has been responsible for deterring more than a handful of potential online casinos not yet ready to meet the highly strict regulations and mandates imposed by the UK Gambling Act.
Increasingly faced with nowhere else to turn, online casino operators serious about providing reputable business and fostering responsible gambling practices have turned to smaller countries with loose regulations like Antigua and Barbuda.
The UK Gambling Act prevents gambling from being a source of crime or disorder, associated with crime or disorder, ensures that it is conducted in a fair and open way, and protects children and vulnerable persons from being harmed or exploited. It regulates all casino games including poker, blackjack, roulette, slot machines, baccarat, craps, bingo, keno and more. It also regulates sports gambling, which has long been a huge market in the UK.
The UK Gambling Act also regulates betting on competitive sports like football (European soccer), rugby, horse racing, greyhound racing, tennis, golf, cricket, badminton and more through bookmakers (commonly known as “bookies”), either online or physically.
There are many financial options for online casinos available to UK citizens. When it comes time to make a money deposit with a UK online casino, remember to take into consideration the following accredited third party methods: Click2Pay, Money Bookers, Neteller, Entro Pay, ECOCard, FirePay, myCitadel, UKash, major credit cards and wire transfers.
Although problem gambling numbers have indeed risen since the passing of the UK Gambling Act, this was almost exclusively due to increased land-based gambling activities in the UK, which were also liberated under the Act. Basically, know that the UK has long been a leader in online gambling, which includes sports betting, and will remain so in years to come.
The UK is the most organized when it comes to the regulation of online gambling. It has the most definitive laws they have worked, bringing in billions of dollars each year and for the foreseeable future. On a worldwide scale, many online casinos are based in small countries such as Costa Rica, Antigua and Barbuda, Cyprus, The Netherlands Antilles and Gibraltar. Keep in mind that you must follow the gambling laws of the country or region you reside in, even if the online casino is based in another country.
UK-based online casinos aren’t much different U.S. ones and many overseas casinos accept American players and offer payouts in Euros, pounds and U.S. dollars. In the UK, there are a couple of differences in some of the less-popular casino games like roulette and bingo. In a European roulette wheel, there is no 00, just 0. So, there are 37 spots instead of 38, giving you better odds. In bingo, the European layout for a ticket is different than that of the U.S. The UK layout for a ticket is typically three rows high and nine columns wide, totaling 27 spaces. Card numbers go up to 90, first column 1-9, second 10-19, third 20-29, and so on. Each row has five numbers but four blank spots, and each column has between 1-3 numbers. So, a ticket will have 15 numbers. Numbers are called out with the format of “two and seven, 27” for example. Three different ways to win include a horizontal line of five numbers, two vertical lines, or a “full house” in which all 15 numbers are covered up.
This page was updated on May 21, 2010.