Fondly known as the Keystone State, Pennsylvania spent many years on the frontlines, fighting for online casino legalisation. Finally winning the battle in October 2017, it joins as only the fourth state in the entire US to have made online gambling legal. Of course, while laws are passed relatively quickly, the implementation of their objectives don’t simply happen overnight. This means that apart from legally placing bets at any of the 12 state-approved land-based casinos currently in operation, Pennsylvanians still have limited online play options. If they do want to play online casino games, for instance, this is limited to free fun online slots at fun play casinos (which are essentially free play online casinos) via social casino apps, or, alternatively, at mobile casinos who offer a similar service. Examples include Facebook casinos, or any related online offering via a social platform where no real money comes into play. Free play casino gaming is akin to playing video games at home, only this time, it’s on a casino-style interface instead.
Current Casinos in Pennsylvania
While the specifics of Pennsylvania’s gambling laws are being ironed out (these are expected to be resolved mid-2018, if all goes according to plan), there are still only 12 legal gaming houses in the state at which to play. Speculation is still rife, but as things stand, it is the intention for these casinos to team up with international partners and offer an extended online casino experience to their patrons in addition to any land-based activities currently provided. This move enables the state to implement tax laws on all online activity, generating a sizable income for the state – something that would benefit all the residents within its borders.
Let’s take a look at the 12 land-based casinos which are currently in operation and perfectly legal to gamble at:
- Harrah’s Philadelphia Casino & Racetrack in Chester
A popular racino (which is a mixture of a racetrack and casino, a prevalent combination in Pennsylvania), Harrah’s is also an entertainment hub, with a full events calendar and onsite eatery to compliment the surrounding views the waterfront locale has to offer.
- Hollywood Casino at Penn National Race Course in Grantville
Offering horse racing, poker and other table game betting services, Hollywood Casino also boasts many other entertainment activities. Dining is also on offer.
- The Meadows Racetrack and Casino in North Strabane Township
This racino-slash-hotel offers a stay-and-play package to those holidaying players, but anyone is welcome to drop by for a few hours too. Offering loads of exciting casino games to bet on, including slots and poker, The Meadows also has some wildly fun horse racing activities to bet on.
- Mohegan Sun at Pocono Downs in Wilkes-Barre
Featuring live harness racing 9 months of the year, Mohegan Sun is a one of Pennsylvania’s top casino destinations. The experience is topped off with luxurious hotel and spa stays, live music and other events, and, of course, tons of casino games.
- Parx Casino and Racing in Bensalem
We’re going to go out on a limb here and say that horse racing is huge at Parx Casino as a thrilling video of a race in action is the first thing that greets you when you land on their website. Apart from horse racing, there are ample casino games with thousands of slots and up to 180 table games on offer. Well worth a visit.
- Presque Isle Downs & Casino in Erie
Bordering on a magnificent racetrack, the Presque Isle Downs & Casino is the perfect place to enjoy a number of entertainment activities, including casino gambling, horse race gambling, live entertainment and karaoke, as well as an overnight stay if you’d like more time to explore the event-packed venue.
- Mount Airy Casino Resort in Mt. Pocono
Bordering the Mount Airy Golf Estate, the Mount Airy Casino Resort boasts legendary fun at every turn. Whether you’re there for a wedding or spending a weekend with the boys golfing, you’ll have plenty of entertainment at your fingertips 24/7. Don’t forget to wind down at the spa while you’re there!
- Rivers Casino in Pittsburgh
One of the few Pennsylvania casinos that isn’t a racino, Rivers Casino in Pittsburgh is every gambler’s dream. From dining and entertainment, to a never-ending selection of thousands of slots, table games and more, feel free to let you hair down and enjoy all that on offer whenever you want, all year round.
- Sands Casino Resort Bethlehem in Bethlehem
Enjoy a drink in the Molten Lounge or tuck into a meal at Emeril’s Chop House in between soaking up the casino sights and sounds at this famous casino resort in Bethlehem. Boasting a poker room, 3000 slots machines and 200 table games, as well as live dealer stadium gaming, there’ll always be something to keep you entertained.
- SugarHouse Casino in Philadelphia
Nestled along the Delaware River, SugarHouse Casinio is as modern as it looks, offering 24-hour entertainment within its polished walls. Enjoy casino games, player’s club rewards and top notch dining whenever you decide to visit.
- Lady Luck Casino Nemacolin in Farmington
Offering high limit gaming, slots abound and royally decorated accommodation, Lady Luck is one of those casinos that exudes personality. You’ll feel an instant aura of familiarity and comfort while you spin your way to a win on the many slot, video poker and keno machines on the floor.
- Valley Forge Casino Resort in King of Prussia
In town for a wedding? Make the most of it at Valley Forge, where a balance of exhilarating gaming mixed with a pumping nightlife and entertainment events await. Modern hotel rooms, a sophisticated casino floor and lots of fun conventions in your area – who could ask for more?
As you can see, while it might be frustrating to wait for legal online casinos to play at in Pennsylvania, there really is a selection of stellar venues out there to keep you amused in the meantime. If you really have an overpowering urge to play online, remember that you still have the option of accessing free fun online slots via social casino apps like Facebook casinos or any other fun play casinos, free play online casinos or mobile casinos that offer a similar service. Soon enough, you will be able to go wild at real play online casinos – many of whom are rumoured to partner with the listed land-based casinos above.
While only four states in the US have legalised online gambling at the time of publication, this is a huge step in the right direction. The income generated through tax will have major benefits for the residents living within each state’s borders and, who knows – once other US states have witnessed the boons that can go hand in hand with legalisation, chances are, they’ll follow in the footsteps of Pennsylvania too!