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Online casinos accepting players from South Africa

Online gamblers in South Africa have had to deal with plenty of changes and confusion over the years. Various parliamentary acts and amendments have kept hopeful punters in turmoil awaiting finalization.

South Africa’s Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) published a National Gambling Policy draft in 2016 and two years later the DTI announced that it intended to bring the National Gambling Amendment Act 2018 to parliament.


Nothing has gotten better for online casino and poker players with these moves, in fact, the latter would make it harder for people to access offshore sites, even though the government has refused to normalize the industry by allowing provincial licensing bodies to regulate casino gaming. That is not likely to change while the Casino Association of SA fights tooth and nail to protect their homeland revenues which fell for the first time ever in 2017.

The sad news is that it remains illegal to actually place a bet online, except through a licensed bookie offering sports and race betting. We can also expect dog race betting to go the way of online blackjack, roulette, slots, and video poker with the proposals.

However, while it remains forbidden to offer casino gaming or to place a bet on casino, poker, and bingo games online - some providers are willing to deliver content over the internet to South Africans who are themselves willing to take a risk.

We must caution that the potential criminal legal penalties can be severe. Beyond that, even if the government doesn't choose to prosecute consumers, they have made good on threats to confiscate player winnings in the past and continue intermittent crackdowns.

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You would be hardpressed to find a stock exchange-listed, publically traded company willing to expose itself to the gray or black market risks, but there are still some huge operators with very large casino offerings that are more than willing to take your action. In fact, South Africans have access to nearly as many games as players in the UK have - they simply don't have the same regulatory protections.


Granted you won't be able to play Thunderstruck or Avalon, even though Microgaming has its roots in South Africa. However, thanks to the advent of remote gaming systems, game aggregators, and content distribution agreements among developers, bundlers, and platform providers you can play many of the games usually found on the Microgaming Quickfire Network.

Many online platforms today use geolocation services. This means that the software "knows" you are logging in from South Africa. This allows the gaming site to only show you the games you will be able to play, so there's no disappointment when you see a familiar or fun-looking title only to click on it and be barred from play after the game has loaded.

In essence, you'll be able to play whatever you see at these technologically advanced venues. When in doubt, Realtime Gaming sites are always a good bet.

Mobile Gaming

South Africa is an increasingly mobile society. Pew Research reports that now at least half of South Africans use smartphones.

Advancements such as increased bandwidth for all mobile device users, along with internet browser coding (HTML5) have eliminated the need for installing apps or even downloading computer programs onto desktop machines in order to play every casino game out there. All games are available inside a web browser whether you access the casino on a cell phone, tablet, laptop, or desktop machine. The device operating system (iOS, Android, PC, MAC, etc.) has been rendered inconsequential. Today's slots and other games are "device agnostic".

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Payment Methods and Banking

It's important for players in South Africa to be aware of the several deposit and withdrawal options available and to make wise choices when deciding on payment methods. It never hurts to ask customer service with live chat only a click away at most sites.

Again, some sites will only show you the methods available for your use and not waste your precious gambling time by displaying irrelevant information.

In most cases, you'll want to choose a site that offers the local Rand (ZAR) currency in order to avoid currency conversion fees. Another advantage is that bonuses will most likely be displayed in ZAR so you won't have to calculate "your currency equivalent" in order to maximize the offers.

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One secure deposit and withdrawal method that won't usually require any conversion maths for bonus purposes is Bitcoin (BTC). The reason for this is that many operators place a high preference on the use of cryptocurrencies and may offer bonuses up to 100x higher when using a digital currency rather than fiat money.

Bitcoin as a payment method has additional advantages

National regulators have no way of knowing what you do with your money after it is converted to Bitcoin or another digital currency. It appears as Rands in your bank or another account, is converted on an exchange, and when you are done playing you can simply buy local currency with it.

Instant payouts are far more common when you use BTC. There are no banking gateways to slow the flow of the electronic transfers from your casino account to your digital wallet.

Security is very important to South African gamblers and although the blockchain itself is open to view, it is encrypted in such a way that no other entity can determine your association with the transactions. The system is also impervious to anonymous hackers.

Other easy payment methods

Aside from BTC and an eWallet such as Skrill, you may be faced with depositing with one method and withdrawing your winnings via another. While that's not always the case, many online cashier systems are set up that way for your protection as well as theirs.

Debit and credit cards, EasyEFT, and Skrill are common deposit methods. Online bank transfers and eWallets such as Skrill, Neteller, and ecoPays are common withdrawal methods. All except bank wires can be instant.

Some sites may also accept SID Instant EFT payments if you bank at ABSA, First National BankNedbank, or Standard Bank.

While the list of methods above is by no means exhaustive, it should give you a good idea of ways to get your money safely and securely in and out of the casino you choose.

Author: Shelly Schiff

Online casinos accepting players from South Africa