Gambling is a tradition in Spain: Statistics show that each and every Spanish citizen spend 480 EUR on average each year on gambling activities. This country is also the birthplace of many card games – Spanish sailors and soldiers are responsible for more than half of the card games of today, blackjack included. So yes, gambling has strong roots in Spain and the government loves it too, as it provides them with lots of tax revenue. However, there are not many local online casino Spain sites and players from this country usually prefer playing at offshore casinos. What is the reason for that? More importantly, which online casinos are best for Spanish players? In this article, we will answer these questions and tell you everything you need to know about online casinos in Spain.
First Things First: History Of Spanish Casinos
Spanish players have lots of things to be proud of when it comes to gambling. First of all, they are organizing the largest and oldest lottery in the world, called “El Gordo”, for the last 205 years. Sure, some countries have lotteries older than that, but El Gordo is the oldest government-issued lottery and offers more than 1.7 billion Euros as the grand prize. But the gambling achievements of Spain are much more than a lottery and goes way past then 200 years: It is believed that Spanish sailors invented more than half of the card games of today. Blackjack? Invented by sailors, during the 17th century. Baccarat? Also the work of sailors, and possibly during the 16th century. Other than poker, which is an American invention, almost all card games originate from this country.
Despite this glorious past, gambling and Spanish casinos were considered illegal until 1977. This was the year when card games became completely legal, but slot machines and other table games, such as roulette, were not covered by the law. Now, Spain is a country that consists of 13 autonomous communities, so local governments decided to act by themselves and tried to legalize all forms of gambling. This resulted in lots of problems: Sports betting was legal in a region but illegal in the next, slot machines were available in some areas but strictly forbidden in others, etc. In 2011, all of these problems are fixed with the help of the Spanish Gambling Act. The law is very clear: All forms of gambling (including Spanish casino websites and sports betting) are legal, but the autonomous communities are free to decide otherwise and ban some forms of it, if they choose to do so.
So, Is Online Casino Legal In Spain?
In short, yes, online casino play from Spain is legal since 2011. Brick-and-mortar casinos are legal too, and, in fact, Barcelona is full of them. Madrid is also another popular region and home to the biggest casino building in the country, called Gran Madrid Torredolones. In total, there are nearly 60 brick-and-mortar casinos in Spain and 21 legal sport betting operators are available.
But let’s return back to online casino in Spain topic, as it is the focus of this article. While they are completely legal, the number of local operators is quite a few. Most of the largest operators in the iGaming industry did not bother to apply for a license, due to various reasons (we will mention them below). As a result, most of the online casino real money Spain websites are controlled by local brick-and-mortar casinos, which offer limited content. However, the government is quite liberal when it comes to online gambling and does not censor nor block offshore operators. In other words, you can still choose to play at online casino sites abroad – there are no restrictions in this regard. And we already picked the best ones for you: Pick anyone and start playing today!
Licensing & Audition Of Online Casinos In Spain
Online casino law Spain clearly states that there is a single regulatory authority in the country: It is called “Dirección General de Ordenación del Juego” (General Directorate for Gambling Regulation), DGOJ for short. If you want to get an online casino license Spain, DGOJ is the agency you must apply. It regulates all kinds of online gambling activities, sports betting included. Note that DGOJ licenses are nation-wide: In theory, you can still apply to an autonomous community such as Catalonia to get an online gambling license, but that will be effective only in that community borders. DGOJ licenses, however, give you the right to serve the whole country and that is why no operator bothers with community-based licenses.
An online casino Spain license is effective for 10 years and requires depositing 2.500.000 EUR beforehand, for the possible collateral damages. The operator must purchase a special domain name that ends with “.es”. So, an online casino Spain website must have an address that looks like this: “www.spanishcasino.es”. And lastly, the operator must pay a 20% income tax on every quarter. So every four months, legal online casinos in Spain pay 20% of their profits to the government.
Now, purchasing a special domain name means that your servers must be located in Spain too. In addition, a quarterly 20% income tax is too much: Other European countries offer lower tax rates. And since there are no restrictions on offshore casino sites, there is no real reason to make an investment in Spain: Instead, you can set up shop in Bulgaria, for example, and still accept Spanish players. This is why the number of local operators is low: Brick-and-mortar casinos open up a website because they are already in Spain. Online operators, on the other hand, prefer other countries to offer their services.
Games, Bonuses, Customer Support: What To Expect From Online Casino Spain Sites
Online casino games in Spain are not different than any other games. Spanish players still get to play slot machines, video poker, roulette, blackjack, baccarat, and all the other games you are used to seeing. Surprisingly, however, slot machines are not as popular as they are in other countries. Spanish players prefer card games the most, and blackjack is the main choice of gamblers, as can be expected. But this is not classic blackjack we are talking about: They are mostly playing the original version of the game, which is called “21”.
The same thing goes for the bonuses too: Spanish players can enjoy all kinds of promotions such as welcome bonus, reload bonus, and cashback bonus. As you know, some countries are restricted from participating in welcome bonuses, but this is not the case for Spain. And if you pick one of our recommended online casino Spain websites, you can get the best possible bonuses.
And it is possible to find a customer support agent who speaks Spanish: This is a very common language and you would be able to speak with the customer support in Spanish most of the time. Lastly, we should mention that social gambling applications are pretty popular in this country: Tangelo Games, for example, is a Spanish provider who developed more than a hundred mobile gambling apps so far.
Online Casino Spain FAQ
Play The Best Online Casino Games In Spain, Right Now!
Well, now you know everything about online casino Spain sites: It is time to pick one and start rolling the dice. As always, we recommend picking one of our recommended online casinos in Spain, as our team reviewed them in detail and confirmed that they are able to offer the best possible online gambling experience. No matter which one you choose, we are sure that you will enjoy this experience: Good luck and see you at the tables!