Australian Online Casino Legislation
Following growth in the online gambling sector, the Australian parliament created the Interactive Gambling Act (IGA), which set out to stop or limit companies offering casino games of chance to the Aussie public.
The bill was amended in 2016, as it previously did not restrict offshore online casinos (casinos regulated in the UK or Malta for example) from providing their services to Australia; and came into fruition in September 2017.
These changes also lead to the best online casinos & industry giants Microgaming and NetEnt to withdraw from all Australian regions, meaning that players are not able to access their wide variety of slots and online games for the time being.
The Australian government is focused on taking tougher action against illegal offshore wagering providers. With the recent amendment in place, the Australian Communications and Media Authority (ACMA) has the power to issue warnings, infringement notices, civil penalties, and injunctions. ACMA will also have the power to provide other international regulators with details about the prohibited gambling services.
What Are the Legal Forms of Gambling for Australian Casino Players?
Contrary to what the online gambling legislation may portray, Australia is considered as a hotspot for land-based casinos. Australian players can play a wide selection of games including pokies, blackjack and poker at land-based casinos. Offline gambling is legalized in each state and Australian territory and some territories such as Queensland and Victoria also offer gaming services in hotels.
Sports betting and online lotteries are legal in Australia. Currently, all forms of online gambling, excluding the ones mentioned earlier, are illegal within the borders of Australia.
Who Regulates Gambling in Australia
Just like many other big countries, each Australian territory creates its own regulations and legislation. Below you can find out who regulates gambling within each territory:
- Australian Capital Territory – ACT Gambling and Racing Commission
- Northern Territory – Licensing Commission
- New South Wales – Office of Liquor, Gaming and Racing
- South Australia – Independent Gambling Authority
- Queensland – Office of Liquor and Gaming Regulation
- Tasmania – Tasmanian Gaming Commission
- Victoria – Victorian Commission for Gambling and Liquor Regulation
- Western Australia – Department of Racing, Gaming and Liquor
The Australian Communications and Media Authority (AMCA) ensures that illegal iGaming products are not advertised in any way (offline and online) to Australian citizens.
Sports Betting in Australia
Currently, in-play sports betting cannot be offered to Australian players because of the Interactive Gambling Act which bans real money online interactive gambling activities. Similarly, land-based operators also are banned from offering in-play betting options to Australian punters. However, you can bet, offline or online, before a match starts.
How to Find the Best Australian Online Sportsbook
So how do you find the best online sportsbook for you?
There are certain steps which we recommend that you follow to find the best and safest online sportsbook:
Always look for licensed sportsbooks. Unlicensed sportsbooks don’t follow any regulations and playing at such operators will leave you susceptible to being scammed.
Make sure that the online sportsbook accepts players residing in Australia. This is usually indicated in the operator’s terms and conditions or even in the sign-up process.
Online Sportsbook Betting Offerings
Check the sportsbook selection. A sportsbook which offers a wide variety of sports such as football, ice hockey, baseball and cricket.
A good sportsbook should have a good selection of sports betting promotions which Australian players can benefit from. Promotions can range from welcome bonuses and rewards to weekly promotions and even VIP programs.
24/7 customer support is essential especially if the online sportsbook is based outside of your timezone. This ensures that you will get a reply to your query as quickly as possible. Customer support can usually be contacted via live chat, telephone, email, contact form and even social media.
Online Sportsbook Payment Methods
Have a look at the payments section and check that the sportsbook has a good withdrawal timeframe. Look out for sportsbooks which offer many payment options including cards and e-wallets. Some sportsbooks also accept payments in AUD.
Click on the icons below for more information on popular payment methods.
Australian Online Sportsbook Bonuses
There is a plethora of online sportsbook bonuses offered to Australian players, from multi-bet offers to price boosts and match bonuses, to cashback bonuses and early payouts. We've listed the top 3 Australian Sportsbook offers currently available:
Sportsbet Sports - 100% up to $501
This veteran sportsbook was the very first online booker to open In Australia back in 1993. Newly registered players will receive a 100% deposit match up to $501 bonus on their first deposit. You will have 30 days to use the bonus before it expires. Existing players are also treated to daily cashback and frequent competitions in which they can win cash prizes.
For more information read our detailed Sportsbet Sports review here.
Bwin - up to $50
At Bwin, Australian punters can place bets on over 90 top sports such as football, tennis, basketball, ice hockey and other sports from major leagues, both local and international. Players can also place bets on virtual sports. With a deposit match bonus of 100% up to $50, new players are in for a treat. Existing players can also make use of ongoing promotions such as price boosts.
For more information read our detailed Bwin review here.
Bet365 - 100% up to €100
Bet365 Sports hosts one of the biggest selections of sports betting offerings in the industry, from e-Sports to basketball and golf, to football and cricket, the opportunities are endless. With its Bet Builder feature, you will have no trouble placing bets before the start of the matches!
For more information read our detailed bet365 review here.
Online Casinos in Australia
Top-rated online casinos and casino software providers like Playtech, NetEnt & Microgaming are no longer accepting Aussie players or offer Australian dollars as a currency option.
As these are no longer available online to you, here at CasinoTopsOnline can provide a comprehensive range of information on free; games Australian casino players and free play on a wide selection of online pokies, along with table games, video poker and even live dealer games which you can play in demo mode in our free play section.
Unclear Future for Online Gambling Operators in Australia
The main goal of the updated bill is to provide players with a safer and more regulated experience. With the government focusing on cracking down on illegal online gambling to combat gambling addiction and protect problem and at-risk gamblers, it is quite likely that these restrictions will remain in place for the foreseeable future.
Australian Online Casinos FAQs
Below we've answered some of our readers' frequently asked questions. Have a look for more information.
This page was written in 2017 and is now maintained by Melody Hampton. Should you have any questions or see any discrepancies on this page, feel free to reach out to her at email@example.com. The casino list at the beginning of the page is revised each month, to ensure we only offer the best casino sites with no deposit to our readers. For a list of references used to create this page, please see below.