Arizona Online Gambling & Casinos

Giuseppe Faraone
Senior Author
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Online gambling has rapidly grown into one of the most profitable operations over the past few years. Many worldwide enjoy playing their favourite online games ranging from online slots to card and table games.

That being said, there’s a lot of uncertainty regarding the legalities of online gambling activities. Each state has their own rules that could determine whether or not your gambling activities could lead to trouble shortly. 

This guide has all the necessary information those residing in Arizona might need on all types of gambling activities within the state.

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Last Updated • February 2024

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Not all US states have given the gaming green light, but Arizona appears to have embraced it, especially with regard to land-based casinos. Arizona's open-door policy for gaming stems from a long history involving both settlers and native tribes. Perhaps this openness also has something to do with Arizona's proximity to Nevada and the world-famous Las Vegas. 

The matter of online gambling is a little murkier, often leaving residents in some confusion. In this article, we explore the gaming landscape of Arizona, listing the major rules to keep in check, so that you can figure out exactly how to gamble legally in this part of the USA.

Guide to gamble in the state of Arizona

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Arizona Gambling Laws and History

Arizona's journey to legal gambling wasn't an easy one. Throughout the decades of changing administration, gambling went from fully embraced to outright outlawed and then back again. It's actually an extremely interesting facet of Arizona history, but we don't have time for the full shebang here. Instead, we'll give you the highlights:

  • 1912 - The State of Arizona is formed and all forms of gambling are deemed illegal.

  • 1980 - The Arizona state lottery is created, opening the door to wider gambling possibilities once more.

  • 1981 - Arizona legalizes the State Lottery

  • 1988 - After much negotiation and political conflict, tribal casinos are completely legalized.

  • 2002 - Indian gaming preservation wins a vote to retain tribal gaming by a very narrow majority.

  • 2021 - online sports betting becomes legal, while roulette, baccarat and craps can be offered in tribal casinos.

Arizona's land-based gambling is legalized through tribal/state compacts. These are agreements that set out the rules, regulations, and conditions under which tribes can operate gambling businesses. What's important to note, is that while land-based gambling is legalized in Arizona - with no fewer than 26 casinos - this is all done in tribal zones under legal compacts.

The short answer is ’partially’. While Arizona law embraces land-based casinos on tribal land, there is no specific legislation for online gambling in the state's penal code. In reality, it appears to be tacitly allowed, with many US-facing sites welcoming players from the state of Arizona. 

The thing is, it's not really possible to break a law that doesn't exist, which is why many Arizona residents utilize online gambling sites quite freely. On the other hand, some might argue that the law stipulates that real money gambling can only take place under legal compacts, and online casinos fall outside this sphere.

In reality, the legality is murky, and every player should feel free to make the choice they're most comfortable with. One thing to note - the state has never yet prosecuted individuals for gambling online. This is another argument in favor of online casinos and poker sites, as it seems to indicate the state's reluctance to intervene. Online sports betting is completely legal for operators who obtain an Arizona license.

Land-Based Casinos in Arizona

Land-based casinos have seen a complete evolution from basic sites for bingo to slot machine halls and eventually to fully fledged casinos complete with table games and poker. Today there are around 26 land-based casinos in Arizona, and this number is expected to rise. With a very recent call for new casinos in more locations within Phoenix, it looks like Arizona is hoping to become an Atlantic City rival.

The casinos themselves are beautiful, sprawling structures packed with gambling entertainment of all types. That includes slot machines, keno, house-banked poker, blackjack, and a few popular table games. Here's where I come in with some bad news. While Arizona law paved the way for tribal casinos, it outlawed the games of roulette, craps and baccarat. 

This is slowly changing after 2021 amendments to the law and many casinos have installed these games. We're not quite sure why these particular games were singled out, but it might have something to do with the large stakes and the total lack of strategy required.

For online gambling in Arizona to be considered completely legal, it would require permanent changes to the penal code. At present, the law completely avoids all mention of online casinos, only making mention of sportsbooks. 

It’s unclear whether this is an oversight or a deliberate lacuna. As things stand, residents of Arizona are free to log in and play at any online casino that accepts them. They can play all the games available for real money and cash out their winnings. 

Although it’s not specifically legal, it’s commonplace enough for players to make the assumption that it is. In this current situation, players always run the risk of being faced with penalties should the state ever decide to act. The only reason this is highly unlikely is that in 2021 Arizona legalized online sports betting, which will make it harder to distinguish between which activities are actually taking place since many sites combine both sportsbook and online casinos.

Sweepstakes and Social Casinos in Arizona

Because sweepstakes sites, social casinos and play-for-fun game versions never allow real money gambling, they're always legally available to all players across the US. For this reason, there are absolutely no restrictions or limitations on playing at sweepstakes and social casinos in Arizona.

These are exclusively available online, and the rules vary depending on the site. They usually allow players to register for free, with the option to purchase coins or tokens. These are native to the site and have no monetary value. 

Instead, the coins and tokens are used to access games, tournaments, and competitions. The rewards available depend on the site you choose, but they usually come in the form of physical prizes, extra coins or tokens, access to exclusive events, or sometimes even real cash! Socially, casinos have seen a massive surge in popularity, with players finding them an exciting alternative to real money games.

Expected Online Casino Games in Arizona

There's no guessing necessary here. When it comes to online casino games available in Arizona, you only need to look at what's already available. As discussed a little further up in this article, online casinos are one of those things that are not technically allowed, but no one's saying anything about it. As a result, residents of Arizona are free to register with a huge range of super popular online casino sites like BetUS, Wild Casino, Slots.lv, and so many more. 

These sites are all fully loaded with games from all the best providers in the world. From slots and jackpots to blackjack and roulette, there's no shortage of options. So long as the site freely allows Arizonians to register and deposit, the market remains wide open. Of course, there may come a time when Arizona decides to outlaw all online casino gambling specifically, but we don't think that day is coming any time soon.

Online Slots

Arizonans looking for some slot action won't be short of options. They can choose to visit one of the many land-based tribal casinos for a couple of enjoyable hours playing slots in a genuine casino environment, or they can opt to go digital. 

Playing slots online isn't difficult, as many reputable sites are happy to allow players from Arizona. These offer all the best slots and jackpot games from leading providers. Just be aware that the law isn't specific about its stance, and that means you can't ever be absolutely certain that you're on the right side of the law.

Online Poker

Poker is one of the most historically famous card games, and for good reason. The combination of strategy and luck of the draw has long lured in players, and Arizonians are no exception. 

The numerous land-based casinos that are available within the state almost all host card rooms and poker tournaments. But if you prefer to play online, that option is on the table too. Real money poker isn't illegal according to federal laws of the US, and since Arizona law is silent on the matter of online poker, it's fair to take federal law as your guide.

Lottery

Arizona has its very own state lottery, with a dedicated site that's focused on giving back to the community. The lottery is split into powerball and mega millions, but they also have a scratch game for those who prefer the thrills of instant wins

The state lottery has been in place since 1981, giving a portion of profits to several charitable causes and initiatives aimed at the conservation of the environment. The lottery can be accessed online, or you can purchase tickets in designated stores.

Roulette

Roulette has always been considered persona non grata at land-based casinos in Arizona. However, with the introduction of legal sports betting in 2021, tribal casinos brokered a deal whereby they would be able to start offering roulette games, as well as craps and baccarat. 

This relatively recent change means that some land-based casinos have not yet introduced the newly approved games, but I doubt they'll be far behind. Alternatively, players from Arizona can register at numerous online casinos offering both electronic and live roulette.

Online Blackjack

Blackjack has always been welcome in Arizona's land-based casinos, famous for their fair house edge and multiple strategies. And seeing as there are 26 of these and counting, a live blackjack game is never too far away. 

Those who prefer to stay home can also access blackjack games very easily through the numerous online casinos that accept players from Arizona. Keep in mind that if you want to remain strictly within the letter of the law, you're probably best off making the trip to a physical casino.

Live Dealer

Live dealer games, also known as live casino games, are a delicious combination of online casinos and real casinos. Players are afforded the benefit of playing from home or on the go, and access to a huge range of games found exclusively online. 

On the other hand, players who crave real casino interaction will get that from the real dealers who run the games in a live environment. This type of game is purely an online casino product, so you'll have to brave any potential consequences of playing live dealer games from Arizona. Our opinion? It's a risk, but a very small one.

When Could Arizona Legalize Sports Gambling?

As of 2021, sports gambling is completely legal in Arizona. It was a move that surprised the gambling world, but perhaps it shouldn't have been. With so many Arizonans taking their money and betting on offshore sites, Arizona was being left out of the profit pool. 

By legalizing sports betting and sportsbooks, they get to charge operators eyewatering annual sums ($100,000 to apply for a license, $750,000 for the initial licenses and $150,000 to renew their licenses each year). There are now about 18 legal online sportsbooks in Arizona, and the market is on the rise.

Daily Fantasy Sports Betting in Arizona

It's legal to play and bet on daily fantasy sports (DFS) in Arizona, but it hasn't always been the case. When these games first came onto the scene, Arizona allowed them to operate without problems. As they gained popularity, the Indian gaming industry became displeased. 

They felt they should be able to offer all casino games unless Arizona issued a ban on DFS. Instead of allowing the tribal casinos more freedom, Arizona made DFS illegal. This move created a lot of dissatisfaction as many viewed DFS as being outside the sphere of gaming. By 2021, the decision has been reversed. 

Tribal casinos were allowed a wider range of table games, sports betting was regulated by the state, and Daily Fantasy Sports was legal once again.

Horse Betting in Arizona

As mentioned previously, by August 2021, the Arizona Department of Gaming (ADG) had legalized sports betting and issued licenses to ten tribes and eight professional sports leagues. 

Today, Arizona has a massive selection of off-track betting bureaus as well as several online sportsbooks geared toward horse betting. 

In fact, betting on ponies has become so commonplace that it takes place outside the usual betting haunts and has spilled over into sports bars, restaurants, and hotels. The only restrictions are that wagering is limited to within racetrack hours, and betting on harness racing isn't allowed.

Expected Online Sportsbooks to Launch in Arizona

Operators who want to offer sports betting services in Arizona need to register and pay for a state- owned license. That means it isn't a free-for-all, and operators who don't pay their dues to the state will be heavily penalized. 

In the last couple of years, there has been a fierce competition to dominate the newly opened market, and a few sportsbooks have really risen above the rest. Luckily for Arizonans, competition means choice, and it won't be too hard to find a great online site to place sports bets. With top sites like BetMGM, BetFred Sports and Unibet leading the way, players from Arizona are spoiled for choice.

What Sports Can I Bet On When Arizona Legalizes Sports Gambling?

We've already covered the fact that sports betting is entirely legalized as of mid 2021. That means that players can place bets on any sport available on licensed sportsbook sites. For example, one of the leading sites allows players to place multiple bets on no fewer than 25 leading sports, including boxing, golf, hockey, rugby union, NBA, and NFL.

The possibilities are essentially limitless, as long as you're over 21 and located inside state lines, of course. There is only one restriction, and one that's very firmly in place. When writing the legislation for sports betting in Arizona, it was decided that prop bets placed on college athletes were completely prohibited. This is set out within a clause of Bill HB 2772.

Deposit and Withdraw Methods in Arizona Gambling Sites

Depositing and withdrawing from legal betting sites is fairly straightforward. Today, all reputable online casinos, social casinos, DFS sites, and sportsbooks will all offer multiple payment options for safe and secure ways to cash in and cash out.

Transactions can take up to five days, depending on the method you choose. Credit and debit cards are always an option, with most sites accepting Visa, Discover, MasterCard, and American Express. You should always check for any additional fees these transactions could carry. Online

Banking and prepaid cards are another safe option, but be aware that you can never withdraw a prepaid card. Instead, you'll have to request a bank transfer. E-wallets are usually on the payment method list, with PayPal, Skrill, and Neteller being the most popular. PayNearMe is a newly approved payment method that's become extremely popular for those looking to place sports bets. This allows you to visit a local CVS, 7-Eleven or Family Dollar to deposit funds in exchange for a payment slip. This will allow you to add a credit to your preferred online sports betting account.

Keep in mind that these deposit and withdrawal options are only sanctioned for sports betting. Utilizing them at regular non-sports online casinos is entirely at your own risk.

Bonuses to be Offered in Arizona

The concept of bonuses and promotions is very much the territory of online casinos and sportsbooks. In the case of the former, the law is a little murky as to whether or not players from Arizona can participate in such offers without impunity. It seems to be tacitly allowed, with the state making no move to curb access. 

On the other hand, accepting bonuses from Arizona-licensed sportsbooks is totally above board. These are usually very generous and let players hit the ground running with a pile of bonus cash for sports bets. 

Quite often, welcome offers will come in at well over $1,000 in bonus cash, with others offering $500 match bonuses. But the goods don't stop there. Once you've used up your welcome bonus, you can expect weekly and even daily offers of varying sizes to make your matches extra interesting. Of course, these offers always come with restrictions, and reading the terms and conditions for each is always highly recommended.

Our thoughts on how Arizona is Developing

Compared to many other more conservative US states, Arizona has a very welcoming stance when it comes to gambling. There are some differences when it comes to online vs land-based gambling but, for the most part, residents are free to gamble with real money. 

The only real consideration when it comes to gambling in Arizona is the non-explicit legal status of online casinos. It's highly doubtful that the state would ever prosecute players who sign up to play for real money online, particularly since online sports betting is gambling. 

However, it's also highly doubtful that the law would offer you any protection if you run into difficulties with an online casino site. That's why we highly recommend that players only choose to engage with very safe and secure sites that come properly endorsed. Check out our list above for a selection of all the best online gambling sites for players from Arizona.

Arizona Online Gambling FAQs

Can you gamble online in Arizona? Arrow
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Giuseppe Faraone

Giuseppe Faraone

Author & Online Gambling Expert

1188 Articles
Being so close to the action in iGaming, Giuseppe is on top of any new developments the minute they come through the door, as his book is testament to. Published in October 2022, his first book; The Untold Story of Online Gambling is available on Amazon.
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