Although Gambling is permitted all over Canada, it is regulated by, and therefore is different in the country’s 3 territories and 10 provinces.
Gambling itself is a massive industry that goes from licensed, luxury casino resorts to backroom games so it’s no real surprise that, despite being legal in Canada, the specific laws are complicated and range from situation to situation; game to game and territory to territory. Lotteries, racetracks, Casinos, online slots and various gaming organisations must abide by the laws laid out by their respective territories or provinces in Canada. The legalisation of the type of gambling you wish to indulge in and the minimum age requirements are determined greatly by the place you gamble at in Canada. Online gambling is obviously a special case, though, as it is far harder to regulate as the same games, even casinos, can migrate from one territory to another just because of where the player finds themselves.
Canada offers many different types of legalised gambling options, ranging from bingo halls, video lotteries (VLTs), online slots, racetracks, land-based casinos to online casino establishments. However, it is casino gambling that a large majority of Canadian travellers prefer.
Some amount of illegal gambling also happens in Canada through non-government regulated videogames, online gambling operations and private betting houses, all of which pose a constant challenge to the concerned authorities.
Gambling in casinos
This is by far the most well-known form of gambling that Canadian travellers opt for. There are over 100 different casinos spread across Canada, with the exception of the following 3 provinces: New Brunswick, Prince Edward Island and Newfoundland & Labrador.
Many of these casinos are situated in popular tourism spots of the country, with the idea of giving something extra apart from the chance of winning money, to the travellers. For instance, Niagara Falls review Casino resort situated close to the historic Niagara Falls, in Ontario is a huge Vegas-style splashy casino that also offers various shopping facilities, restaurants and live shows to the visitors.
First Nations casinos
Many of the Canadian casinos are run on the First Nations reserves, by the tribes of those regions. These casinos are open to the general public and Orillia’s Casino Rama is the biggest of all of them. It’s situated in Ontario, towards the north of Toronto. Not only does it offer a huge range of slot machines and table games, you can even catch some live performances by popular artists, including the likes of Diana Ross, Carrie Underwood and Jerry Seinfeld. On a side note, do you know Jerry Seinfield had once said that he intends to die standing up!
A bit about its history
What once used to be a means of passing time, gambling has gradually evolved as an integral recreational and leisure activity that is accepted throughout Canada today. Its widespread acceptance in the country began in the year 1969, with the alteration of the Criminal Code, enabling territories and provinces to generate funds for social causes via regulated lotteries. For instance, a large amount of funding for the Montréal Olympics in 1976 was generated through such lotteries (which is one of the four legacies of Montreal Olympics that you probably weren’t aware of).
How old should you be?
The minimum age requirement for playing at land-based casinos in Canada is the same as the minimum drinking age in the country, and something that may vary from territory to territory and province to province. You’d be safe if you are at least 19 years old, except in case of Quebec, Manitoba and Alberta where you’re allowed entry even if you are 18.