Norway is a Scandinavian country with a very high standard of living and a well-organized welfare system. It has experienced steady economic growth since the beginning of its industrial era ranking the 23rd economically free country in the world. A rich private sector and a wealth of natural resources make Norway the envy of other developed nations.
While all the characteristics above describe a country that has a ripe market for leisure activities such as gambling, legal hurdles and government monopoly besmirch any ideas of establishing a casino in Norway. To say it plainly, Norway has some of the most restrictive laws regulating gambling.
Legal Regime of Gambling in Norway
The Penal Code of Norway of 1902 states, under sections 298 and 299, only games of chance that are considered legal are those that have been granted a special license. Only two companies in Norway are licensed to provide gambling services Norsk Rikstoto and Norsk Tipping. Otherwise, all forms of gambling, including online casinos, are illegal in Norway. It is, however, permitted to have gambling parties at home if the parties are not conducted as businesses.
Norsk Tipping is government owned and is licensed to provide games like lotteries, sports betting, Keno, and others. It is regulated by the Ministry of Culture and Church affairs with strict rules regarding when to bet and how much to bet. Norsk Rikstoto is also owned by the state and is only allowed to arrange horse race betting.
There exists a Norwegian Gaming Authority that falls under the district of the aforesaid ministry. The authority’s role is to oversee all kinds of gambling and ensure that they are conducted in a fair manner and also to curb the negative effects of gambling on the population of Norway.
With regard to online casinos, it is decreed that it is illegal for a Norwegian national to gamble on a foreign website. This law locks out a huge number of online casino operators seeking to tap the Norwegian market. To make matters worse, Norway is not a member of the European Union, which has been on the forefront in advocating for liberalization of gambling policies among its member states. For a Norwegian gambler, all hope seems to be lost.
The Plight of Online Gaming in Norway
There is hardly enough to go by when it comes to online casinos in Norway. Model citizens are limited to the charade of games that are offered by the state-owned providers Norsk Tipping and Norsk Rikstoto. However, the die-hard gamers will often find a number of online casinos willing to take their krones. Although unlicensed by Norway, these casinos are still a trustworthy bunch that gets their licenses from more accepting jurisdictions. Moreover, while the Norwegian online gaming situation might seem dire on paper, the reality is quite actually different. Ardent players can still get their gaming fix with high-end games offered in daring online casinos.
Games Available in Norway
Even in this restricted environment, players willing to bend the law a little can enjoy the most popular titles in online casinos. Some of these include:
From the list of games, any experienced gamer will surely deduce that the best software providers are involved. Bally, Barcrest, NetEnt, Microgaming, International Gaming Technologies, Novomatic, and Betsoft are some of the big names you can expect to sample from in Norway. Most of the providers provide both download and no-download options. Mobile gaming is also available on smartphones with the emergence of online casino apps and HTML 5, which is compatible with PC and mobile alike.
Online Casinos that Accept Kroners
Some online casinos will admit Norwegian players despite the tough legal restrictions. All the casinos listed will present to the player with an opportunity to bet with real money. Here are some of them:
- Casumo Casino. This new casino assembles the biggest software providers to ensure that players have the best possible user experience. Casumo has won a variety of awards for innovation in casino and also for the best mobile casino product. In Casumo, one can expect to play popular titles across all game categories.
- Sloty Casino. This casino mainly focuses on slot games boasting of more than 1,200 titles of the game. Players can indulge in the classic 3-reel version of slot or opt to play the more nuanced 5-reel version with classic titles such as Kathmandu, Mega Moolah, and Immortal Romance.
- All British Casino. This British Casino prides itself on 12 of the best large jackpot games. Initially, all British only worked with NetEnt software provider, but in recent times, the casino has opened its doors to other software developers, increasing the variety of games offered significantly. All British Casino brags about a game library exceeding 800 casino games.
Most online casinos in Norway accept a wide range of payment methods. Deposits can be made using credit/debit cards, bank transfer, e-wallets and other internationally recognized methods. Most casinos also set their minimum deposit limit at 10 Euros or an equivalent in the desired currencies. Payments can also be made using different currencies including the US Dollar, British Sterling Pound, Euro and even the Norsk Kroner.
Bonuses Offered in Casinos
Many Norwegian players are eligible for welcome bonuses at online casinos. These include no deposit bonuses and first deposit bonuses. However, some casinos restrict Norwegian players from using coupon codes or promotional codes. Bonus features in games are free for all to enjoy subject to terms and conditions.
The serene Scandinavian country is host to many accomplished professional poker players. Despite strict regulations, gamers continue to enjoy the thrill of online gambling in hushed tones. It is doubtful whether the Norwegian government will loosen its laws in the near future, especially since Norway distanced itself from the E.U. For now, citizens of Norway will have to go international for online casinos.