Types of Online Casino in Latvia
Since online gambling is incredibly popular in Latvia, modern gambling platforms try to provide their players with the best experience possible. Only licensed by Latvia online gaming platforms can operate legally in the country and now there are 9 of them. These are predominantly local operators, which offer not only online but also land-based gambling experience. The government of Latvia puts much effort to block online platforms, which do not possess a local license, but since the adoption of a law in 2011, they managed to restrict access only to 1,500 online casinos and it is only one-third of those websites offering the fun of gambling illegally. Consequently, players from Latvia still have access to multiple foreign casinos and play their too. As a result, gamblers living in Latvia can let their hair down in different types of online casinos including ones, which are:
These destinations with great collections of games can be accessed from any browser and do not require any downloads or installation. A player from Latvia opens the casino website, registers on the service, and gets access to the majority of the products by the world’s leading software game providers.
Players who visit certain online services in Latvia regularly can download its software, set it up to the computer, and open it at the click of a button thanks to the icon created. Such casinos require access to the Internet even if you use software, which has been downloaded.
Millions of people use smartphones and tablets every day and this number keeps growing incessantly. That is why modern players can access their favorite casinos from mobile devices. Usually, such gaming services become responsive or create an app to use on the mobile device, while some operators even have developed special mobile casinos to access from Latvia and other countries.
A relatively new but highly appreciated type of gaming services is live dealer casinos. These are unique platforms where games are managed by live dealers and players can play against other opponents in real time. Latvia tries not to follow behind other European countries and implements all the innovative casino solutions as early as possible too.
Types of Casino Games for Latvian Gamblers
Do you know a favorite game of players from Latvia? It may sound quite predictable but the biggest part of both terrestrial and land-based gaming establishments provide players with extensive collections of various slot machines. When gambling became legal in Latvia, most of the gaming institutions which opened at that time were offering only slot games and local players have adored this game so much that now it takes the first place in the rating of the most favorite casino games.
According to the latest statistics, every fourth resident of Latvia uses casino services and 80% of players select slot machines, first of all. One-armed bandits are famous for their simplicity of rules, the process of playing, and sizable prizes. These are games, which can provide every player with the experience of being a winner since they feature a very high RPG. However, it is not the only game to look for in Latvia. Modern gaming destinations licensed in Latvia have made their selection of games much more various than it used to be before. Today, gamblers can select from the abundance of card, table, dice games as well as play some exclusive variants coming to Europe from other continents. If you are a fan of different games to play at the casino, be confident to look through the list and make your choice in favor of your favorite activity. It is possible to hang out playing:
These are only some of the game examples listed on websites licensed in Latvia, while every casino has its full diversity of games to play. Many of them feature additional bonus games and prizes, but the conclusion is clear – you will never feel sad on these platforms and will get the utmost fun visit in them!
Online Gambling Laws and Regulations in Latvia
Gambling has become legal in Latvia after it has become an independent state and many local citizens have appreciated that. However, the government of Latvia managed to raise the question of the gambling industry regulation only in 4 years after that. Before the first gambling law was adopted in Latvia, many non-reliable operators had started their operation in the country and players had not been protected by the state at all. New gambling facilities could be opened overnight and without any permits, so it forced the government to undertake serious steps towards the regulation of this sphere.
Is online gambling allowed in Latvia?
Gamblers from Latvia sighed with relief in 1991 when gambling was officially allowed in the country. Since those times, every citizen and guest of the country can visit gambling establishments without restrictions. Unlike many other countries, Latvia has also made a step forward to the regulation of the online casino industry and legalized it in 2003. Even though online casinos had not been regulated until 2003, they were still very popular with players. According to the statistical data, two-thirds of all online casinos visited by players from Latvia were foreign platforms. This fact was a sign for the government of Latvia and it led to further work on the laws to regulate online gambling in the country.
What is the main gambling law regulating gambling online in Latvia?
The first and the main laws to regulate gambling in Latvia were adopted in 1994. These were the Law on Lotteries and Gambling Tax and Duty and the Law on Lotteries and Gambling. They have become the basic laws, which have undergone multiple amendments since the year of their adoption. The most sufficient amendment to the law on lotteries and gambling was made in 2005 first, and then in 2013, 2016, and 2016. The law also became a ground for the establishment of the Lotteries and Gambling Supervisory Inspection in 1998 responsible for the regulation of the industry.
Other important points of these document can be summarized in the following way. Latvia has 8 legal forms of gambling including betting, slot machines, card games, roulette, dice, bingo, totalizator games, and games of chance by phone. Three of them can be played only in the casinos. The minimum number of gaming tables is 10 in Riga and 5 in other cities, while the number of gaming machines should not be below 20. The maximum amount of winnings to pay out immediately is €721, while winnings over €14,301 must be paid out within 30 days. The amount ranges between these figures must be paid out within 24 hours.
The laws No.15 and 23 of 2003 regulating online gambling were provided with a new concept in 2011. Gamblers are allowed to pull out from gambling to avoid addiction. When it comes to the licensing procedure in Latvia, online gambling operators should have a minimum of €1.4 million share capital and the percentage of foreign companies should be no more than 49%. The license is given for 10 years only if the casino meets all the requirements issued by the Inspection.
It is worth mentioning about the Electronic Communications Law of 2011, which forces local internet providers to block online gambling platforms, which are not licensed by Latvia. In fact, over 1,500 platforms have been already banned but they say it is only one-third of the total number.
Best Deposit Methods for Latvian Gamblers
Fun lovers from Latvia are not restricted in the number of payment methods accepted by local casinos. Many of the examples suggested by the websites are almost instant and provide players with an opportunity to start playing without a necessity to wait for a long time. Moreover, there is a possibility to make deposits from customary financial institutions like banks and electronic and mobile payment systems.
A modern variety of payment methods in Latvia is quite extensive. Players can prefer to send deposits from credit and debit cards and bank accounts and wait for several days for the funds to arrive or choose alternative and more popular deposit methods such as Neteller, PayPal, several Phone Bill methods, etc.
Deposits from e-wallets are a real pleasure for gamblers from Latvia since they are delivered within a couple of minutes and have very low commissions. One more very popular deposit method is using a mobile phone. It is possible to send a certain amount of money from the mobile balance to the casino and use this money for online betting. Such transactions are very fast, secure, though usually have a limited amount.
Other payment methods appreciated in Latvia to pay for the casino entertainment are also Maestro, Visa, and of course, gaining popularity crypto coins such as BitCoin, LiteCoin, Ethereum, and others.
However, since the number of licensed casinos is very limited in Latvia and there are gamblers who prefer foreign platforms with or without licenses of other countries, it is not advisable for them to use such popular deposit methods as credit and debit cards as well as bank transfers since banks are forced to report about such players to the state organs and these people may be punished for the violation of the law.
Accepted Currencies in Latvia
Euro became the official currency of Latvia in 2014 but prices in the country are a bit lower than around Europe on average. It means that Euro is also the main currency accepted on the local online platforms and there is no need to exchange money to be able to play there.
Gamblers from Latvia are lucky ones since they own funds, which are acceptable on a variety of both local and foreign platforms. Consequently, they can easily choose a suitable deposit method and start playing immediately without losing any fees on exchanging.
Euro is a multinational currency circulating not only around Latvia but also other countries of the EU. It means that not only players from Latvia but also residents of other countries of the Union can access casinos licensed by this state and bet on games they like. However, if you think that the Euro is the only currency to deposit and withdraw money from the gaming destinations of Latvia, you are mistaken. Since these casinos offer unforgettable entertainment for residents of other states, not only European ones, there are platforms, which accept many other currencies in addition to Euro. The second most popular currency to make deposits is, of course, the American dollar. This currency is considered to be an international one so nothing is surprising to see it on the list in the casinos of Latvia The third place in the rating is possessed by the British pound sterling – another European currency famous for its reliability and stability. At the same time, this rating is not full since every casino licensed in Latvia has its list of currencies accepted, so it is possible to see many other currencies in addition to the ones mentioned above.
Though it seems that customer support is not obligatory in the casino, there are situations when players cannot cope with the challenges without it. Moreover, professional customer support is also a requirement issued by the Gambling Inspection of Latvia when it considers the eligibility of the platform for a state license. Consequently, it is a very important feature of gaming establishments operating on the Web and sign of the casino reliability for players. How to recognize whether a customer support team representative is professional enough to solve your problem? First of all, it is necessary to explain a person the problem and wait for an answer. Experienced and trained staff will not waste your time and will try to cope with the challenge as fast as possible. However, the speed of reaction to the inquiry also depends on the way how you make it. Most of the customer support teams work round the clock and are available in a chat to respond almost immediately. But if you call the hot casino line in Latvia or write an email, you may be forced to wait from several minutes to several days to get a detailed response.
One of the ways to recognize the professionalism of the customer support group is the list of questions and answers provided in the FAQ section. The more popular questions and more detailed answers there are, the more information you can learn there and ensure that customer support of the website works hard to satisfy the needs of every client.
Predictions About the Future of Online Gambling in Latvia
Latvia is one of the European countries, which has made the gambling industry a reliable source of revenue as well as an attraction for tourists. Thanks to the well-considered regulations developed by the local authorities, gambling in Latvia is controlled very thoroughly and brings about those indisputable benefits. Now, Latvia earns money on gambling in different spheres including taxes and casino licensing. It is worth remembering that new regulations of 2018 applied taxes to all casino winnings and now it is being discussed to increase taxes on gambling operators, games, equipment, and player safety standards too. Probably, the first increase will take place in the nearest future. It is also planned that ‘sin taxes’ applied not only to gambling but also alcohol and tobacco will come in force in 2022 and this money will be spent on the State Culture Capital Foundation.
Another prediction about the future of online gambling in Latvia is not that inspiring since according to the Electronic Communications Law of 2011, 1,500 illegal gambling platforms have been already banned in the country. Probably, this process will continue and more gambling destinations without a license issued by the authorities of Latvia will be restricted or even prohibited in the country. The main goal why it happens so is to leave as much revenue from the gambling inside Latvia as possible and prevent local citizens from spending their earnings in foreign casinos.
Naturally, there are positive aspects to foresee in the future of casinos operating in Latvia. The number of online gambling platforms licensed by the local authorities will grow together with the quality of services provided. More platforms in Latvia will offer live games coordinated by experienced dealers and mobile games, which can be accessed almost from any modern device. Probably, new technology will also influence the world of online gambling and such exciting novelties as virtual reality and artificial intelligence will be implemented in this sphere too to make it much more fascinating and mesmerizing.