As of 2018, Poland is the eighth largest economy in the European Union and the largest among its peers of the former Eastern Bloc of the European Union. This robust economy together with a population of about 40 million (as at 2016) makes Poland a prime market for gambling establishments.
However, stringent regulations and government bureaucracy have diminished Poland’s popularity as a target for gambling establishments. With an estimated 50 casinos in 2016, Poland’s gaming scene is far behind from countries in similar economic portfolios. Despite this, earnings from Poland’s casinos have witnessed a steady rise over the years, and an increased appreciation for gaming has also been reported across the land-locked country.
Gaming Regulations in Poland
The Ministry of Finance licenses Polish brick and mortar casinos. In 2011, the government of Poland banned the operation of slot machines outside a licensed casino through the Gambling Act. The ban was upheld in 2015 by a Constitutional Tribunal. The ban in itself was a big hit to land-based casinos as it significantly boosted their respective businesses. However, other providers offering gaming services outside casinos were forced to shut down or take part in the illicit and unregulated black-market trade.
Poland’s online gambling scene is monopolized by state-owned operator “Totalizator Sportowy” with only a few online casinos licensed to offer lottery and sports betting services. In 2017, in a bid to implement the restrictive online casino regulations, the government ordered internet service providers to block a list of online casino websites and also order banks not to transact with online casinos.
Poland’s gambling policy does not conform to the policy of the European Commission. The E.U. Commission has incessantly urged the government of Poland to enact more liberating laws with regard to licensing and game filtering of online casinos. However, this plea seemed to fall on deaf ears as the government of Poland enacted even more stringent laws regulating online gaming.
Amidst an uproar of the international online gambling community, Poland is on its way to ratifying a set of regulations that would essentially allow private online casino entities to provide casino games in Poland. As the situation stands, however, online casinos are prohibited in Poland.
Online Casinos in Poland
Regardless of the bureaucratic hurdles that the Polish government imposes on online casinos, a few trusted names still operate the online casino scene but on an unregulated international space. The crackdown in 2017 to close down any unlicensed online gaming sites caused a mass exodus of online casinos from the Polish market on account of being blacklisted by Internet Service Providers. However, a few great online casinos have managed to escape the government’s punishing eye.
Although limited in options, a player looking to enjoy the thrill of online casinos might still be able to select from top software providers and the best games worldwide.
In a jurisdiction that discourages gambling, only a few dare to operate. These resilient few could only be the best casinos around since only the best can survive in tough conditions. In Poland, the best casinos also bring with them the best software providers. You can expect to find the full gaming might of giants of the trade Microgaming, Novomatic, Betsoft, Yggdrasil Gaming, and counterparts NetEnt.
Top Casinos Accepting Zloty Currency in Poland
The stringent regulatory restrictions in Poland have affected the number of online casinos that accept their local currency. With the directives issued to Polish banks restricting transactions with online casino establishments, there is limited wiggle room for online casino operators.
- 32 Red. A trusted name in the gaming industry, 32 Red still braves the harsh regulatory atmosphere that haunts Poland. Operating under an unlicensed charter, this British casino is trustworthy since the Government of Gibraltar still licenses it. 32 Red enjoys a proud reputation built over time for the variety and quality of games that it offers. 32 Red is powered by Microgaming software making an extensive list of Microgaming games available at this casino. Gamers can enjoy a vast variety of sets including 300+ slot games, table games, video poker, live dealer casino, and a Playboy live dealer section developed by Microgaming.
- Guts Casino. Guts Casino is relatively green to the online gaming scene. However, this casino packs a punch with a host of brilliant software providers providing quality games. Find slot games, table games and poker games from Microgaming, NetEnt, Play’N Go and Betsoft lining the menu of this casino.
- Casino Cruise. Another new player on the online gaming scene, Casino Cruise can attribute much of its success to a fabulous and extensive game library powered by the best software providers like Microgaming, NetEnt, NYX, Vivo, and Play’N Go. The titles found in Casino Cruise are among the most popular of the providers’ titles.
How to Make Deposits
Following restrictive trade practices, there exists a bias against dealing with banks in Poland. Most Casinos, albeit unlicensed, demand the use of alternative payment methods. While deposits will be accepted in Zloty, withdrawals can only be made using other currencies in a bid to circumvent a harsh banking system in Poland. Basically, any transactions that ordinarily avoid banks are welcome.
Bonuses for Pols
Unfortunately, many online gambling establishments exclude Polish citizens from claiming some bonuses due to the legal topography of the region. On the bright side, however, Polish citizens can still enjoy the in-game bonus features of the various games offered in casinos for huge rewards and better winning chances.
Liberation of the Polish Online Gambling Scene
The E.U. continues to push for more lax regulation on online gambling. Significant strides have been made so far, but in all honesty, no concrete changes have been witnessed. In a country whose gambling revenues are on the rise, markets should be open to allow for more investment.