Legal Gambling Age by State in the US

Courtesy: harrah’s casino

For many Americans, the legal gambling age is similar to the legal drinking age—21 years. This limit applies to both Americans and foreigners that visit land-based casinos in the country. So, just because you can gamble at 18 years in the UK doesn’t mean you’ll be given entry in Las Vegas casinos.

That said; gambling laws keep changing. And according to the latest data, the legal casino age in the US varies from one state to another.

Alabama, Alaska and Arizona

If you’re in a hurry but want to know the legal gambling age in the US, check the comprehensive list at legalgamblingage.com. It breaks down age limits across the country through a table and ranks all states alphabetically. As a result, you can easily spot your state and check the age limit for casinos, sports betting, bingo, lotto and DFS.

Alabama is one of the few states in the US without a lottery. It also prohibits online casinos, sportsbooks and poker clubs. The only accepted forms of gambling are pari-mutuel betting and land-based casinos. For these establishments, the legal gambling age is 21 years.

Alaska and Arizona have similar laws. They permit tribe-owned casinos, bingo halls and pari-mutuel betting. But you can’t bet online or bet on sports. In Alaska, you can wager on bingo if you’re above 19 years while in Arizona you can only bet if you’re over 21 years.

Arkansas, California and Colorado

In Arkansas and California, the legal age for playing bingo, lotto games and pari-mutuel betting is 18 years. Sportsbooks are banned in both states but they allow a handful of land-based casinos that accept players aged over 21 years.

Both casinos and sportsbooks are allowed in Colorado. Bingo, lotto, and Daily Fantasy Sports are also legal. But you have to be 18 years to participate. For clarity, Colorado is one of the 18+ states that now accept sports betting. It legalized the industry in November 2019, one year after the Supreme Court struck off PASPA.

Connecticut, Delaware and Florida

Connecticut is in the process of legalizing sports betting. But as things stand, only tribe-owned casinos, horse racing, lotto and bingo are allowed. Entry to casinos and pari-mutuel betting shops is restricted to people above 21 years. But you can buy lotto tickets or play bingo if you’re above 18 years.

In Delaware, all forms of gambling are legal, including online casinos that accept PayPal, Visa, cryptocurrencies and bank transfer. With bingo, lottery and pari-mutuel betting, the legal age is 18 years. With the rest, you must be above 21 years to gamble.

Unfortunately, we can’t same the same about Florida. It permits horse race betting, bingo, lotto and tribe-owned casinos. But it bans sports betting and online gambling. Besides casinos (21 years), the legal age for all other forms of betting is 18 years.

Georgia, Hawaii and Idaho

After many years of conservative laws, Georgia legalized online sports betting on November 20, this year. State legislators passed the bill through a 5-2 vote, giving the Georgia Lottery Corporation authority to license mobile betting websites.

To be clear, Georgia permits bingo and lotto games to players above 18 years. However, it doesn’t allow casinos and sports betting—similar to Hawaii. The Aloha State is much tougher on gambling, though. It bans nearly all forms of betting.

In Idaho, land-based casinos and pari-mutuel betting are available to people above 21 years. On the other hand, bingo and lotto games are allowed for players above 18 years.

Illinois, Indiana and Iowa

Illinois is yet another state that got interested in gambling legislation after PASPA went down in 2018. It has since permitted both land-based and online gambling. But businesses can only accept bets from people above 21 years.

In Indiana, the same case applies. Sports betting and casinos are for people above 21 years. However, lotto, bingo, poker and horse race betting accept customers above 18 years. Like Illinois, Iowa legalized sports betting post PASPA. It also supports casinos, bingo and lotto to people above 21 years.

Kansas, Kentucky and Louisiana

In Kansas and Louisiana, land-based casinos accept bets from players above 21 years. However, Kansas allows bingo, lotto and pari-mutuel betting if you’re over 18 years. But you must be 21 years and over to bet on these games in Louisiana. Kentucky bans casino and sports betting. But it allows bingo, fantasy sports and pari-mutuel betting for people over 18 years.

Minnesota, Nebraska, New York, Oklahoma, Wyoming and South Carolina

In all the states mentioned above, the legal gambling age at land-based casinos is 18 years. They also allow bingo, lotto, pari-mutuel betting and even poker bets for the same gambling age. However, they differ on their approach to online gambling.

Tennessee, Texas, Utah, Vermont, Virginia and Washington

In these states, land-based casino gambling is banned. They also prohibit sports betting and all forms of online gambling. On the other hand, the legality of poker sites, bingo, lottery and pari-mutuel betting varies.

For clarity, some of the states are also working on bills to legalize sports betting. Washington is an example. It allows one mobile betting app to operate. Tennessee is another example. The state welcomed its first betting website on November 1, this year.

Utah is the only state with no plans to legalize sports betting and casinos. The state has always had retrogressive betting laws.

All other States

 In Oregon, Pennsylvania, New Jersey, North Dakota, West Virginia and Wisconsin, you can play casino games safely if you’re above 21 years. You can also play bingo, lotto games and pari-mutuel betting if you’re over 18 years.

In Pennsylvania, New Jersey and West Virginia, all forms of gambling are allowed. So, you could bet on football, soccer, basketball, play poker, slots or daily fantasy sports online. However, many jurisdictions ban one or a few forms of betting.

In Nevada, for example, casinos and sportsbooks are allowed. However, you can’t play slots and card games on the Internet. The same case applies to Ohio and North Dakota.

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