Gambling in Texas 2021
Gaming in Texas is a popular activity, despite the limitations. With the limitations in place, many Texans travel to neighboring states like Oklahoma, where there is more leniency. In terms of Texas Law, gambling activities include bingo, gambling machines, sports betting, and poker nights.
As the saying goes, everything is bigger in Texas. Unfortunately, this is not that case when it comes to gambling. Texas only houses 22 casinos and pari-mutuel facilities. The city with the most casinos is Galveston, which has five casinos. The largest casino in Texas is Kickapoo Lucky Eagle Casino. The second biggest is Naskila Entertainment. However, players have a better chance of getting the best casino entertainment online. That is why we have this Texas gambling guide to help players. Read on for all the rules, regulations, forms of legal gambling, best casinos, and more in the Lone Star State.
Casinos to Gamble Online in Texas
Texas Gambling Laws
Despite Texas being named one of the most popular games of poker, the state has relatively strict gambling laws. People can easily bet on horse racing and greyhound dog racing. However, there is always an exception to the rules. In Texas, social gambling may be permitted. It involves office pools, bingo, and raffles for charity fundraising. Betting on games of chance, except for horse races and greyhound dog races, is strictly prohibited.
Where to Gamble in Texas
There are three casinos in the whole of Texas. Two of these are Indian casinos, and one is a casino boat.
The casino boat, Jacks or Better Casino, is found in the city of Galveston and sales about 9 miles into the Gulf of Mexico where gambling is permitted. Players can enjoy games such as blackjack, roulette, craps, three card poker, slots, and video poker. They are required to present a valid ID with a photograph to gain access onto the boat.
The two Indian casinos offer class II games, which are based on bingo. These machines look like slots but are bingo games. The spinning reels are for entertainment purposes.
Types of Gambling Allowed in Texas
Gambling in Texas is very restricted. Very few events are permitted to accept bets and payout real cash. Two of the primary forms of gaming that are accepted are on horse and greyhound dog races. These events take place across eight race tracks across the state. Players are required to place their bets online for each event. No off-track betting is permitted.
Gambling on games of chance such as on card games or slots, this is illegal. However, tribal casinos are exempted from this law. Players can legally gamble on card and dice games, as well as slots at Native casinos.
Breakdown of legal gambling games:
Casino Games – Yes, but with limitations. Only one tribal casino offers slots and poker tables.
Live poker – Yes, but only at the Lucky Eagle Tribal casino. Players can also enjoy social games at home but under strict legislation.
Online Poker – No, but there is a possibility Texas will jump on the bandwagon to legalize online poker.
Sports Betting – Yes, players can bet on pari-mutuel betting on horse and greyhound races. However, these bets must be placed online. There are no facilities to take bets at the event tracks.
Lottery Betting – Yes, Texas has its state lottery. Texans can also bet on inter-state lotteries.
Bingo games – Yes, but there are carve-outs for charity bingo events. These will require a license and must adhere to strict rules in terms of prize money and the frequency of the games.
Best Casinos in Texas State
|Kickapoo Lucky Eagle Casino Hotel||
||794 Lucky Eagle Dr, Eagle Pass, TX 78852
|Events Across Texas Casino Parties & Event Planning||
||8515 Brodie Ln #1124, Austin, TX 78745|
|The Hangar Poker House||
||212 N Bender Ave Ste 244 244, Humble, TX 77338
||540 State Park Rd 56, Livingston, TX 77351
|Texas Card House||
||13376 Research Blvd Suite 605, Austin, TX 78750|
History of Gambling in Texas
The gambling in Texas dates back to before Texas became a state. The early settlers enjoyed casinos, horse racing, and lotteries. In the first constitution of Texas, all forms of gambling were banned. It meant betting on games of chance, horse racing, lotteries, or any other form of gambling that was thought of at the time was banned.
1933: Pari-Mutuel Betting Legalized
However, in 1933, the first-breakthrough appeared. It was when pari-mutuel betting on horse racing was legalized. It only lasted four years.
1989: Horse Race Betting Returns
Horse race betting returned to the face track of Texas. No additional forms of gambling have since been allowed at these venues. In neighboring states, some horse racing venues have slot machines for players to gamble on.
Fight Against Casino Gambling
On two separate fronts, Texas has had to fight off casino gambling. The first from tribes who took claims to federal courts. This came after authorities shut down their high-stakes bingo halls and casino developments. Texas has since won the arguments, and today there is only one tribal casino operating – Kickapoo Lucky Eagle.
The second front was for casinos on water, with boat casinos from international waters offering their selection of games. A law from 1948 was used by the Texas Government to fight off boat casinos. They required them to be afloat for a minimum of 24 hours and to have docked at a foreign port.
While the Texas Government may have won their fights against casinos, many residents of Texas choose to cross into nearby states such as Louisiana and Oklahoma, where casinos are more conveniently located.