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Online Gambling in California for 2022

California

Want to learn all about real money online gambling in California in one spot? Everything you need is right here in our complete guide.

We give you an in-depth overview of the gambling regulation in the Golden State, so that you can better navigate complex laws. You’ll also have access to our list of the top online casinos in California. 

All the casino sites we recommend are safe to play at and licensed by trusted authorities, while also offering you great bonuses and your favorite slots and casino games.

Our Top-Rated Online Casinos in California in 2022

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Why Are These the Best Online Casinos in California?

Our team of experts goes through a rigorous process to find the best online casinos for CA players. You can be sure that all the gambling sites on our list are secure and offer nothing but quality slot machines and online casino games for your pleasure.

Californians can enjoy the benefits of these great casinos while being in the chance to earn some money. Our team leaves no stone unturned while reviewing gambling sites, looking into all their nooks and crannies. Below you can see which factors we check when vetting the top online casinos in California.


Discover Top Payment Methods at California Online Casinos

Choose any California casino from our list for secure deposit methods and quick cashouts. While credit and debit cards are standard options, our CA online casino sites also feature e-wallets and cryptocurrencies.

Here’s an overview of the most popular methods: 

Credit and Debit Cards

A top California casino will accept VISA and MasterCard, among others. Credit cards are ideal for deposits, while debit cards work well for both deposits and withdrawals. One of the perks of gambling with credit and debit cards is that transactions are quick and secure. 

Prepaid Cards

If you’re not a fan of using your bank cards, then you can still make use of prepaid cards at California casinos online. The way it works is that you add as much money as you need to your prepaid card, and there’s no risk of overspending or getting into debt. There are a number of popular VISA and Mastercard prepaid cards that can be used easily to top up your online casino account balance. 

E-wallets

E-wallet options include Skrill or Paysafecard. These form part of digital payment systems that can be used to make deposits and withdrawals. Gamblers like e-wallets because they keep your banking information private. Your details aren’t shared with the online casino, but rather they only see the email linked to your e-wallet account. 

Cryptocurrency

While not all online casinos in California take cryptocurrency, this method is becoming more common. Bitcoin and Ethereum are two of the most accepted digital currencies in online casino gambling. Benefits include anonymity and some of the fastest withdrawal speeds. This is all thanks to blockchain technology.

Bank Transfer

If you want to avoid applying for a credit or debit card but would still like to make use of your bank account, you can opt for a bank transfer. All you need to do is choose the amount you’d like to send to your gambling account, and the money will be transferred directly to the casino. Just remember that while the casino site might not charge you any fees, your bank might.


Play Your Favorite Games at Online Casinos in California

Online gambling sites are your best bet if you want a ton of game variety. You will find casino staples such as video slot machines and numerous table and card games on our list of the best California casinos online.

That’s not all you’re getting. Our casinos also have exciting live casino games that allow you to play against a real dealer. Some even feature online sportsbooks, delivering an all-in-one solution for your betting and gambling needs. From football to racetracks, you can bet on hundreds of markets and never spend a minute bored.

You’ll never run out of game options when online gambling in California. Have a look at our list below:

Slots

You’ll find thousands of slots, some of them with different paylines, others with multiple wilds and mini-games. From cherry slots to progressive jackpots, there’s something for everyone when it comes to slot machines.

Table games

From roulette and blackjack to craps and baccarat, table games are both classy and intense. Give them a go and you’ll see what we’re talking about – it’s classic casino action. 

Poker

Whether you’re playing three card poker against the dealer, or Texas Hold’em against other people, you’re bound to find all these exciting variants at our top-rated CA online casinos.

Live Dealer Games

Live dealer games are the perfect mix between online and land based gaming. Our California online casinos deliver a deluxe Vegas experience straight to your device.


Enjoy Safe and Secure Online Gambling in California

Real money online gambling in California is a legal gray area. This is why we help gamblers find safe online casinos licensed in other countries. We would never approve a foreign casino without a license. You should always check for trusted operating licenses from authorities such as Curaçao eGaming (CEG).

Our suggested online casinos in California also protect your personal data and transactions. Thanks to advanced SSL encryption, your details are secure from third parties.

We check for fair games too. These are tested by independent organizations to ensure results are really random. Such companies include eCOGRA and GLI.


Claim Generous Bonuses at the Best California Online Casinos

Join any top online casino in California and you’ll get a slew of great casino bonuses and promotions that will get you started on your gambling journey.

After signing up, you can get extra cash from deposit or no deposit bonuses to use on your favorite online casino games. You can also earn match bonuses, free spins, and even loyalty rewards if you become a regular player.


Current Gambling Laws in California: An Overview

The state of California is one of the largest in the US. This makes it a very important market for operators, both land based casinos and online ones. However, it’s also a state that has a lot of different parties offering some sort of gaming. This should present plenty of opportunity for casinos online to operate. However, it’s instead created a divide between those involved which has prevented legislation from passing.

Right now, there are no clear regulations in relation to California online casinos. That doesn’t mean you can’t gamble online in California. As with most of the United States, such as online gambling in Texas and online gambling in Florida, it is considered a gray market. This means that while casino sites aren’t welcome within state lines, there are also no laws preventing you as a player from signing up and gambling online at a foreign site. Without any state laws imposing penalties against playing online, most gaming companies are open to Californians.

While regulation hasn’t come here yet, though, the state of California may be the key to the long-term success of legal online casinos in the US. With a population of 39 million, about one in eight US residents live in the Golden State. That’s more than the entire population of Canada! Whatever happens to online gambling in California could potentially influence the US market at large.  


What Forms of Gambling Are Legal in California?

While most forms of real money gambling are prohibited in the state of California, the following activities are legal:

  • The state lottery
  • Bingo
  • Tribal casinos
  • Card rooms
  • Pari-mutuel betting on horse racing


How Is Gambling Regulated in California?

There are two bodies which regulate gambling in California. These are:

The CGCC is mostly responsible for developing regulations for card rooms and tribal casinos. It also provides licenses for card rooms. If online gambling in California is ever legalized, the CGCC would be involved in the licensing of online casinos. The Bureau of Gambling Control ensures gambling laws are followed by conducting investigations. 

The legal gambling age in California varies depending on the type of gambling. To play on pari-mutuel betting, bingo, and the lottery, you must be over 18 years old. California casinos accept players between 18 and 21, but this differs according to the casino chosen.


Land Based Casino Gambling Options

Whether you live in the Golden State or just plan to visit, there are dozens of California gambling venues available. These can be divided into two: tribal casinos and card rooms. 


Tribal Casinos

These are all run by Native American tribes on or near their reservations. There are around 66 of them in California. This is one of the largest chains of Native American casinos in the US. Some tribes, such as the Iipay Nation of Santa Ysabel, have launched online poker sites since 2014, even though the state prohibits such activity.

A couple of these tribal casinos are big enough to feel like fully fledged resorts. The best and largest California casinos all feature several slot machines, table games, and poker tables, which is why they have made it to our list. We list our top five below:

CasinoAddressContact NumberLocation
San Manuel Casino777 San Manuel Blvd, Highland, CA 923461-800-359-2464Southern California
Pechanga Resort Casino45000 Pechanga Parkway, Temecula, CA 925921-877-711-2946Southern California
Thunder Valley Casino Resort1200 Athens Ave, Lincoln, CA 956481-877-468-8777Northern California
Viejas Casino Resort5000 Willows Rd, Alpine, CA 919011-833-294-5569Southern California
Morongo Casino Resort & Spa49500 Seminole Drive, Cabazon, CA 922301-951-849-3080Southern California

There are a few quirks you should be aware of when you play casino games in California. While house-banked card games are permitted, craps and roulette are not – at least not in the versions you’re usually accustomed to. Because state law does not allow dice or wheels to determine the results of these games, cards are typically added to the mix to offer players the same action.

Craps is perhaps the most famous example. Typically, two separate “decks” of six cards each are used to simulate the dice rolls that determine each bet. Sometimes, dice are thrown back into the mix: the cards might be laid out on the table, with the dice determining which cards are flipped and used. While each California casino uses a different method, the idea of using cards to simulate dice is pretty universal throughout the state.


Card Rooms

If you’re just looking for table games such as poker, there are also plenty of card rooms across the state of California. This makes it one of the best American destinations for serious players. Some of these rooms are quite large, with the most famous ones including:

Card RoomAddressContact NumberLocation
The Commerce6131 Telegraph Rd, Commerce, CA 900401-323-721-2100Southern California
Bay 1011788 N 1st St, San Jose, CA 951121-408-451-8888Northern California
The Bicycle (“The Bike”)888 Bicycle Casino Dr, Bell Gardens, CA 902011-562-806-4646Southern California
The Gardens11871 Carson St.Hawaiian Gardens, CA 907161-562-860-5887Southern California
Hollywood Park3883 W. Century Blvd., Inglewood, CA 903031-310-330-2800Southern California

As you might expect, the focus at these card rooms is on poker games like Texas Hold’em and Omaha. However, many also offer a version of blackjack where players play against each other, rather than the house. State law protects the Native American operations by preventing these rooms from offering traditional blackjack. They make their money by charging a player fee, rather than from the game itself.


Horse Racing in California

There are four permanent racetracks in CA:

  • Santa Anita Park
  • Del Mar Racetrack
  • Golden Gate Fields
  • Los Alamitos

These aren’t just the top tracks in California, but some of the best across the US. Important events such as the Breeders’ Cup World Championships happen at Santa Anita. The prestigious Champion of Champions, a $1 million event, is hosted by the Los Alamitos track. 

The California Horse Racing Board (CHRB) is responsible for horse racing matters. It oversees horse betting, such as pari muteul wagering, and enforces regulation.


California Lottery 

The California Lottery was legalized in 1984. Since then, it has made the state a lot of revenue. In fact, when it comes to lottery sales it is only second to New York. Most of the funds go towards public education. CA also takes part in multi-state games such as Mega Millions and Powerball. 


What’s Popular To Play in the Golden State?

Playing casino games in CA for real money is very popular. For example, Californians love playing poker. They can do so in many licensed card rooms. Still, further laws on card rooms are needed. There are pending hearings in the Senate over the issue.

As the most popular game in the state, there have been many efforts to regulate online poker in California (since 2008). Lawmakers failed to do so on many occasions. This is because gambling stakeholders don’t agree on a framework for online poker. Right now, legal sports betting has a higher chance of becoming a reality in the state. 

Californians enjoy playing casino games online too. Unfortunately, there is little political interest in making commercial online gambling in California legal. If you want to play real money slots or table games, your best bet is to play at reputable foreign sites.


The Future of Online Gambling in California

Real money online gambling in California remains a legal gray area. However, while casinos online won’t be regulated anytime soon, there might be hope for legalized sports betting. These measures are being pushed by California’s Native American tribes. If sports betting laws are relaxed, this could be good news for other forms of gambling in the state. 


Sports Betting Could Soon Be Legal in California

January 8th, 2020 marked California’s first hearing on the possibility of regulating sports betting. Industry experts weighed in on what the sports market would look like and how much revenue it could bring in. Their estimate stands at $2.5 - $3 billion per year, but only if these new gambling laws also include the legalization of online sports betting. Based on this, a measure to approve sports betting in California is in place for the November 2022 ballot. 

If sports betting is legalized, this could be the first step towards regulating California online gambling. It wouldn’t be in the state’s interest to lose out on so much revenue. Other states have shown that the benefits are indeed significant. 

For example, it’s estimated that sports wagers in New Jersey will reach $10 billion in 2021, with online sports betting being a game changer. NJ online casinos will bring more than $1 billion in revenue. Also, regulating California online gambling would protect from losing players to neighboring states. Since the approach towards gambling in Nevada is less strict, more Californians are choosing to play there.

If you’re wondering why the current legal status of sports betting in CA is complicated, it’s mainly because the parties involved aren’t on the same page. There are three major gaming concerns in the state: Native American tribes, card rooms, and racetracks. While the tribes and card rooms believe only they should be allowed in a regulated market, the racetracks say they deserve a slice of the pie as well. And while horse racing isn’t the juggernaut it once was, it still holds enough sway in the legislature to help prevent any bill that doesn’t include them from passing. This means that new California gambling laws would need to be implemented to protect all interests and stakeholders involved.

Online Gambling California FAQ

The only types of gambling legal in California are the state lottery, bingo, tribal casinos, horse racing, and card rooms. Online gambling in California isn’t regulated so you can only play at foreign sites.

It’s illegal for operators to run online casinos from within state lines. However, you can still gamble online securely if you play at foreign gambling sites. Do remember to check for a license from a trusted gambling authority.

Yes. While online gambling in California is a gray area, you can play securely at foreign sites. Just ensure that you choose a gambling site licensed by trusted authorities such as Curaçao eGaming. Avoid shady sites at all costs.

That depends on your preferences, but we’ve made things easy for all players. Our experts have compiled a list of the best California online casinos where you can play safely. These gambling sites offer a great selection of real money and free games that span video slots, table games, and live dealer games. Some even have a sportsbook which will surely sit well with Californian sports fans.

Sure, if you choose to gamble for real at any of the recommended foreign sites we have on our list, then you can win real money by playing casino games in CA.

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