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Best Online Casinos in France in 2020

France

Voi-là! Your search for France casinos online ends here. France has a long and eventful history with all forms of gambling, but it has also leaped into the 21st century with a fantastic spectrum of French online casinos. Our VegasSlotsOnline experts walk you through a colorful world full of intrigue, resources, and of course, our top-rated online casinos for France. 

Roulette was born in France, and the country has housed some of the world's most prestigious land-based casinos. Online casinos in France have recently been regulated, so any overseas operator wanting to move into the new market must acquire a license. That hasn't always translated into exceptional choice for French gamblers, but the internet is without question a safer and luckier place to be for modern betting.

Online gambling in France is as common as baguettes! All gambling activities are legal and you can freely play for real money at an online casino in France without scrutiny.


Join Our France Online Casinos for 2020 

Residents of France can easily access all the top games and offers at the best online casinos in Europe and across the world. Skill-based table games such as poker and blackjack are always in high demand, while slots enthusiasts can relish spinning the reels online with a fabulous bonus, just like the rest of us. No laws or fine print are there to deter you from a thrilling gaming experience. You have the luxury of choice here, so grab yourself a sweet bonus deal and get the dice or machines rolling! 

Take a look at our expert list of the best online casinos accepting players from France:

Top Real Money Gaming Sites in France 2020

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France Online Casino Guide – Get the Best Online Experience

Now that you’ve seen out top-rated online casinos in France, you can soon start playing. But first, check out our overview of online gambling in France! Keep reading for our customised advice on making the most out of online casinos in France.


Popular Casino Games for Online Casinos in France

Online casinos in France give gamblers a spread of games to play and appreciate – much more so than any traditional casino. 

Slots: Slots are relatively new to the French masses, but players will find hundreds to play at licensed .fr websites. Most established slot developers have licenses to operate online in France. You can play in euros and all casinos with .fr extensions are available in both English and French.

Roulette: Roulette originated in France (it means "little wheel"). The game was brought to the US in the 18th century, where it flourished. European Roulette is available at most of the good online casinos we suggest on this page. French gambling sites also run American Roulette for real money.

French Roulette: French Roulette is an exciting variant of European Roulette that has an added insurance bet. The ‘la partage’ rule refunds half the player's even-money stake if a zero (0) appears. This helps reduce the house edge in French Roulette to just 1.7%.

Online Poker: Online poker was incredibly popular until France decided to segregate its market. Along with Italy, Portugal, and Spain, France shut off its poker players from other countries. French poker players online had to make do with poker sites carrying .fr extensions. Only French players can access the sites. However, in 2018, there were moves to pool players with Spain. 

Live Poker: Live poker has suffered in recent years, but France has always had a poker presence. The Aviation Club de France (ACF) was operational from 1908 until 2015, when it was closed down and its licence revoked. Major tours like the World Poker Tour (WPT) and European Poker Tour (EPT) have held live tournaments in France. The Partouche chain of casinos has its own world-renowned championship too – the Partouche Poker Tour.

France has produced some of the world's best poker players over the years. Fabrice Soulier, Antoine Saout, and Bertrand "ElkY" Grospellier have all won millions on the live circuit. France also flaunts two or three major online poker rooms that are popular both at home and abroad.

Best Deposit Methods for French Gamblers

French players have a limited but safe range of deposit options when gambling online. A deposit in euros (€) is generally allowed, and fees can be low. Deposits can take anywhere from a few minutes to 2 or 3 days to be processed.

Bank Transfer 

A direct bank transfer can be a good deposit option for French players. For online casinos in France, use your internet banking page or app to send cash directly to your player account.

HiPay

HiPay is a secure French e-wallet available in France and across Europe. The deposit method is generally free from fees, and you can use your French bank account to send money.

PayPal

PayPal is a leading e-wallet provider that allows you to transfer cash easily online. With a single anonymous virtual wallet, French casino players can fund their gambling with multiple credit cards and bank accounts, or other e-wallets. 


Gambling Laws in France 

For a country with such a rich gambling tradition, it’s remarkable that the French authorities have prohibited certain forms of gambling over the years. Some of the oldest gambling establishments in the world can be found in France, and the nation’s contribution to the development of some of today’s most popular games can’t be overstated.

It was as far back as the 1500s when the Queen was introduced as a face card in the deck, taking the place of the Nobleman. France was also the first to introduce the standard 52-card deck we use today. It was a French mathematician by the name of Blaise Pascal who invented the roulette wheel in the 17th century, which led to the development of the timeless game we adore. Even the idea of pari-mutuel (“mutual”) betting originates in France, and is said to have been first practiced in the country in around 1870.

There are close to 500 casinos, horse racing tracks and "racinos" (a combined racetrack and casino) dotted around the country. The size and age of the brick-and-mortar casino industry in France might go some way towards explaining the French authorities’ reluctance to fully embrace the online world. However, some of France's best-established poker rooms have shut down in recent years, which raises questions about the viability of such a great number of physical casinos in the digital era.

Until recently, two state-owned gambling operators monopolised the French gaming scene. The PMU looks after horse racing and the FDJ takes care of betting games and lotteries. The only notable legal changes over the last 20 to 30 years were a reduction in the legal age for gambling, which was brought down to 18 from 21 in 1987, and the legalization of land-based slots machines in 1988, which for some reason had been banned previously.


Revolution Towards Online Gambling in France

That was until France finally caught up with the boom in online casinos. In recent years, despite being a key EU member, the country was dragging its heels in online gaming. No doubt you’re wondering how the country that brought the world the 52-card deck and the roulette wheel has reached a position where some online games are unlicensed. But there are various circumstances at play – and let’s not forget that the country has a huge brick-and-mortar casino legacy to protect.

French laws got a permanent makeover with the revolution of 2010. After several years of pressure from the EU, France passed The French Gambling Act. Under the new rules, the state monopoly of casinos was broken and online gambling was allowed. It also paved the way for the establishment of ARJEL (Autorité de régulation des jeux en ligne) – the regulatory authority for online games.

Operators were required to apply for a license when running an online casino in France. It was the same situation for setting up an online poker room or a sportsbook for real cash. This was a vital piece of legislation for players as it opened up the French market to other EU gaming operators. 35 companies applied for and were granted licences to provide sports betting, horse racing betting, and online poker to French players.

Sadly, at this stage the government decided to exclude casino games, slots and table games. They were regarded as “too addictive” by French politicians although it appears to be a slight contradiction that they continue to be deemed acceptable at land-based casinos. Nonetheless, the change was a positive step forward for the market for French players, and they now have a far healthier choice for sports betting and poker at the websites that hold French licenses.

France now has one of the toughest online legal frameworks in Europe, which has grown its competitive edge as a nation in a bloc with varying levels of regulation. The legal treatment of online casinos in France sets a good example for other developing gambling markets to follow.

The EU continues to apply pressure on French lawmakers to bring their policies in line with European regulation.


Understanding Tax in French Gaming

The only Achilles heel in this approach revolves around the French authorities’ attitude towards taxation and regulation. The high tax rate has led to 15 of the 35 original operators with newly  gained licences to withdraw their operations from the country, as a result of unsustainable running costs.

ARJEL: Autorité de régulation des jeux en ligne (the Regulatory Authority for Online Games) was set up following the 2010 French Gambling Act. It issues licenses to online operators and helps:

  • Protect players and vulnerable gamblers
  • Ensure the safety of games
  • Fight illegal gambling websites
  • Fight money laundering and corrupt sites

When ARJEL was set up, any site operating under a .com domain in France had to reapply for a .fr domain. Guilty sites faced a fine of €10,000 a day if they didn't comply.

PMUPari-mutuel Urbain (PMU) is the main company in France that handles horse racing bets. PMU outlets can be found up and down the country. It was the first online betting operator allowed in France.

When the Gambling Act was implemented, it included very high rates of tax for poker and sports betting. Any poker pot is subject to a 2% tax rake in addition to the usual rake taken by the poker site. To put that into context, French players are paying 7.5% or more in total rake, compared to the industry average of 4% to 5%.

To make matters worse, the Gambling Act also prohibits the sharing of player pools across national borders. In other words, French players can’t play against anyone outside of France, and they also can’t compete for international tournaments or pots. Many licensed sites have stated that this makes it difficult to keep games running with such a limited pool of players.

The same high tax rate also applies to sports betting, which is liable for an 8.5% levy on every individual bet placed. When you consider that you can place a bet in an online casino in France and collect your winnings without paying a penny in tax, you’llsee its serious effect on total profits for the punter.

In addition to these hefty taxes, betting site operators are expected to pay 33% corporation tax, hence the large number of sites that have closed down.

This is one of the classic downsides of gambling regulation: the cost of higher tax is usually shouldered by the customer. And this is where overseas online casinos accepting players from France come in to save the day for you, the player. Not only do you avoid unnecessary deductions from your gambling money when you opt for an unlicensed online casino – you can top up your gaming credit with the best bonuses while still being selective about the casino’s features. The online industry is a fierce innovator and competitor for players’ custom. Trust that you’ll never lose out on a heady dose of excitement when you’re gambling in one of the online casinos recommended by the experts at VegasSlotsOnline. 

And it’s a win-win scenario: as French mentality gravitates more towards online gambling in France, you’ll be met with a broader and diverse offering of casino experiences.


Start Playing at the Best Online Casinos in France

It’s never been easier to join an online casino in France. Players have a wide selection of online casino sites in France to choose from. The country's online gambling framework is more structured now, but operators have strict rules to adhere to. The regulation has little effect on the availability of options for French gamblers, because the market accommodates both sites licensed in France and unlicensed sites operating from abroad. 

With this in mind, French online casinos are easy to navigate and betting in France is a pleasant endeavor. What are you waiting for? Embark on your new France casinos online journey now! 


French Gambling at a Glance

Population: 67 million

Legal Age of Gambling: 18

Land-based Casinos: Yes

Online Casinos Legal: Yes

Popular Games: Poker, horse racing, sports betting, roulette

Quick History of Gambling in France


17th century - Blaise Pascal invents one of the first roulette wheels.

1870 - Pari-mutuel betting is allowed on some horse races.

1908 - Aviation Club de France casino opens on the Champs-Élysées.

1930 - Off-track pari-mutuel betting is allowed. PMU is created.

1973 - Partouche chain of casinos opens.

1987 - Legal age of gambling drops from 21 to 18.

1988 - Slot machines are legalized in France.

1997 - PMU starts to accept bets on overseas races.

2009 - After EU pressure, the French government passes the French Gambling Act and sets up ARJEL to handle and issue new licenses.

2010 - PMU launches online sports betting site, the first to operate under a new license in France.

France Online Casinos FAQs

Yes, online gambling in France is completely legal. Whether you’re playing in an online casino based in another country or betting on local, regulated casino sites, you’re not breaching the law. Apart from heavy taxation on domestic services, online gambling culture in France is mostly permissive.

Come take a peek at them – we’ve compiled a list of the best online casino sites in France for you here. Our experts are skilled and experienced at identifying what makes players tick. This knowledge is used to filter all the noise out there and find the diamonds in the rough, meaning the casinos we suggest are safe, reliable, cool to explore, and super focused on their players and service.

The most popular casino games in France are poker and roulette. These table games have lots of variations and will never bore the French or you! They’re closely followed by slots, which are a relatively new trend for the nation but consistently ranking as one of the most preferred gambling options.

The legal gambling age is 18 years in France. It used to be 21, so anyone below that age wouldn’t be allowed entry into any casino. For French online casinos and others based overseas, the legal minimum is always 18. Online casinos in France and elsewhere have sturdy ways of verifying their users’ age to ward off underage gambling.

There are currently 8 brick-and-mortar casinos in the French capital city, and they’re as glitzy and glam as you’d expect. Poker rooms are a classy affair in Paris – a phenomenon belonging to exclusive member circles and stunning venues. The world-famous Aviation Club de France hosts global poker tournaments and other casinos have all the flair of the City of Light.

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