How We Select the Best PA Online Casinos
Determining which online casinos in Pennsylvania have what it takes to be rated as the best is no small feat. Luckily, our extensive experience reviewing sites has shown us the key performance indicators we should consider when analyzing them, enabling us to develop a future-proof benchmark test for each casino. Some of the aspects we scrutinize include the choice of games, banking methods, bonuses, and the casinos’ legal status. Let’s take a closer look at those KPIs below.
Licensing and Security
Licensing and security are a couple of aspects in which we cut casinos no slack. All Pennsylvania online casino sites on our list are proud holders of gambling licenses from the Pennsylvania Gaming Control Board (PGCB).
In addition, we make sure the casinos employ the latest security measures to safeguard all sensitive information supplied by the players. We particularly make sure these casinos use 128-bit or 256-bit SSL encryption and other military-grade safety protocols, which are the only guarantee no prying eyes will ever gaze upon your records or banking transactions.
Also, only casinos that display their licensing information clearly and abide by responsible gambling policies stand a chance of showing up on our list.
The choice of games is crucial in determining a casino’s true worth and, therefore, a vital factor when rating any site. The gambling platforms on our lists boast a wide selection of video and classic slot games, card games, poker, live dealer games, and more.
Selection of Bonuses and Promotions
Nothing gives a casino quite as much leverage over competitors as a good variety of bonuses and promotions. Pennsylvania’s casinos offer great welcome bonuses for newly-signed users as well as a good selection of reload, cashback, and loyalty bonuses for existing customers.
Naturally, not all bonuses are the same. This is why we delve deep into the terms and conditions of these bonuses to ascertain if they give players a decent chance to turn the bonus into real cash. The casinos on our list check all the right boxes in that regard, which is why they secured a spot on the list in the first place.
It seems one particular segment is often underemphasized when casino reviews are in question — the user experience. Well, not on our watch. We praise operators whose sites are easy to navigate and feature quick load times. We ensure there are no glitches and bugs that may hinder your gameplay. Crisp design and clutter-free pages are characteristics shared by all casinos on our list.
Fast, safe, and convenient payment methods are essential for a seamless casino experience, which is why we analyze the banking pages of PA online casinos with extra care. The casinos found on our page feature various e-wallets, debit/credit cards, prepaid cards, bank transfers, and other payment methods with fast processing times and flexible limits.
Mobile Casino Gaming
Many Pennsylvanians use their smartphones and tablets to access online casinos on the go. The casino sites we feature have optimized mobile versions that work on all Android and iOS devices. Casinos with proprietary downloadable mobile apps that players can find on Google Play Store and iTunes even received extra credit thanks to those apps.
Evaluating the customer support team in every casino is an indelible part of our review process. The customer support should be easy to contact through multiple channels, such as live chat, email, phone, or social networks. Also, we appreciate 24/7 availability and knowledgeable and friendly support agents.
Pennsylvania’s History of Gambling
Pennsylvania occupies a prominent position on the gambling map of the U.S. In one form or another, the Keystone State has offered legal gambling since the 1950s, when parlay betting on horse races was legalized. For close to 20 years, it was the only form of legalized gambling in the state.
Then, in 1971, per Act 91, the state-wide lottery was established to provide tax relief for elderly citizens. The bill laid some ground rules for conducting and advertising lottery draws and covered many other commercial aspects.
The newly-established legal framework for the lottery was a stepping stone for a broader push for the legalization of casino gambling in the state. After a couple of failed attempts during the 80s and 90s, finally, in 2004, the legislators voted to approve the Racehorse Development and Gaming Act, which legalized casino gambling at standalone casinos, slot parlors, and racetracks. Under this act, the Pennsylvania Gaming Control Board was created and tasked with overseeing and regulating all forms of gambling in the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania.
The government legalized online casino gambling, sports betting, online poker, and all other forms of internet gambling in Pennsylvania in 2017 when Gov. Tom Wolf signed the bill H271 into law.
The first online casino in Pennsylvania was launched in 2019, two full years after the legislation was enacted because the Department of Justice issued a stricter stance on the Wire Act in 2019. The operators now have to set up separate game servers in states in which they plan to offer online gambling, so it took them some time to do so in Pennsylvania.
Now, all Pennsylvania online casino sites are firing at all cylinders with more extensive game libraries and better overall gambling offers than when they first started.
Pennsylvania Online Casino Games
PA online casinos started with relatively small game libraries since it took the Pennsylvania Gaming Control Board some time to test and license software developers. Nowadays, online casinos feature hundreds of games of all types and categories.
In the following sections, we will present the most popular casino games in Pennsylvania, their payout percentages, gameplay rules, and other essential details.
Slot games are the go-to option for most casino players in Pennsylvania and the world. Slots are the most dominant category in online casinos and sometimes account for 80%–90% of all games in the lobby.
The simple gameplay rules are one reason for their popularity. You only need to set the amount you wish to wager and hit the “Spin” button. The outcomes of the spins are governed by the Random Number Generators, complex algorithms that ensure the results of all spins are perfectly random and unaffected by previous rounds.
The Return to Player percentage, or RTP, represents a theoretical payout percentage, and in slot games, the legal minimum is 85%. However, most online slots have RTPs of over 90% and higher, making them one of the games said to pay back the most.
Also, the myriad of themes, bonus games, and exciting gamification features that we can find in slots are the things that power their popularity among players of all legal ages and preferences.
We can further divide slots into several sub-categories based on their formats and structure. These categories are:
- Classic 3-reelers — If the first thing that comes to your mind when you think of slots are classic one-armed bandits with fruits and bells as the symbols, you have thought of classic 3-reel slots. These slots usually have between one and five paylines and don’t feature any complex bonuses. These games are simple and perfect for players looking for a traditional casino experience.
- 5-reel video slots — Five reels and multiple paylines represent the standard layout of slots today. These slots have various bonus rounds and numerous symbols that bring hefty payouts.
- Cluster win slots — These slots form winning combos differently from other slots. Namely, identical symbols need to create a cluster on the playing grid to award a win rather than link three or more of them on a single payline like most other slots do.
- Megaways slots — Megaways slots run on proprietary game software from Big Time Gaming (BTG), licensed to many other developers. In these, you can find more rows of symbols and reels than in traditional video slots, and, as a result, these symbols can have more than 117,649 ways to win.
- Progressive jackpot slots — Progressive jackpot slots are perfect for all those seeking to score massive wins. A progressive slot will have a prize pot that grows with each bet placed in that game. A portion of that bet contributes to the shared prize pot, and a randomly-chosen winner can claim jackpots worth millions of dollars.
Pennsylvania online casino sites offer a wealth of traditional table games as well. In this section, you can encounter blackjack, roulette, poker, baccarat, craps, and many other card and dice games.
Blackjack and roulette are among the most dominant games in PA casinos. Browsing the blackjack versions available in casino portfolios, you will find both the classic European and American versions and games with many side and bonus bets, such as a single-deck blackjack, face-up 21, Spanish 21, perfect pairs blackjack, and others.
The same goes for the game of roulette. The most common forms of the game include French, European, and American versions, plus many specialized types like multi-wheel roulette, double-ball, mini roulette, and others.
These casino games are all RNG-powered, which means the outcomes of hands are entirely random. However, players can employ certain betting strategies in games like blackjack and roulette, which can decrease the house edge and possibly lead to some generous payouts.
Video poker is an archetypal casino game that has amassed extraordinary popularity in land-based casinos and slot parlors and successfully transitioned to online casinos in Pennsylvania.
Video poker games offer great payout opportunities and a lower house edge, which is why players like them. In PA casinos, you can find several standard versions of the game, such as Jacks or Better, Deuces Wild, Tens or Better, Bonus Poker, and more.
Live Dealer Games
Live dealer games have revolutionized online casinos. Not long ago, interactions between live dealers and players were solely reserved for land-based casinos. Nowadays, live casino games bring that same atmosphere to online casino players, no matter where they are.
Live HD streams of games such as blackjack, roulette, baccarat, and other table games classics are manned by professional dealers and state-of-the-art studios resembling casino floors from top venues in Vegas or Atlantic City.
You can play your favorite games alongside hundreds of peers, chat with them, and explore all of the same betting options as players in brick-and-mortar casinos, plus some RNG-powered side bets and game shows like Crazy Monopoly Live, Wheel of Fortune, and others.
Pennsylvania Online Casino Bonuses
With more than a dozen licensed operators in Pennsylvania, the competition is fierce, and attracting players is no small task. One way casinos do it is by offering enticing bonuses and promotions.
Although these bonuses can increase the starting bankroll, their wagering requirements, withdrawal limits, and other conditions determine their worth.
Here are the most common types of bonuses and freebies you can find in leading PA online casinos.
Sign Up Deposit Bonuses
Almost every online casino in Pennsylvania will offer a welcome bonus for all newcomers who register and make a deposit for the first time. These bonuses usually match the amount of your initial deposit up to a certain sum, so the more you deposit, the bigger the bonus. Apart from 100% deposit match sign-up deals, you can expect to see bonuses for a couple of subsequent deposits as well as a part of the welcome package.
Sometimes, operators chip in some free spins or other perks to appeal to players, so make sure to pay attention to that as well.
Reload bonuses work just like sign-up or first deposit bonuses; only they are reserved for existing players who make recurring deposits. These reload bonuses can also match the amount of the deposit 100%, but chances are they will match only 25%–50% of your payment.
Also, you will probably need to insert a bonus code to activate the promotion. The bonus codes are usually found on the casino site.
No Deposit Bonuses
No deposit bonuses are risk-free ways to test casino games without having to risk your own money. As their name suggests, these bonuses don’t require you to make a deposit. PA online casinos will give you some starting bonus money for creating an account.
However, these no deposit bonuses have significant limits on how much you can win using bonus cash and how much you can withdraw.
Still, they are a pretty good way to test the games and see which ones suit you best.
Free spins are bonuses that don’t include money but free spins on select slot games. The usual number of free spins is about 10 to 30, and their value is set at the minimum bet level for those particular slots.
Any winnings that may result from the free spins are subject to bonus terms and conditions, meaning all limitations, like wagering requirements and max cashouts, apply to those winnings.
Free spins can come from welcome deposit packages, reload bonuses, loyalty bonuses, and pretty much all other promotions Pennsylvania online casinos sites offer.
Loyalty won’t go unrewarded in PA online casinos. Players who frequently place wagers will also have a chance to claim special bonuses coming from VIP or loyalty bonuses. The more you play, the faster you can accrue VIP points and reach higher loyalty levels that hold the key to more lucrative rewards.
The prizes that the most loyal customers can claim include special reload bonuses, birthday bonuses, invitations to special events, complimentary stays in hotels, and more.
How to Join Pennsylvania Online Casinos
Even if you have never joined a PA online casino before, you won’t have any problems completing the process thanks to the following step-by-step guide:
- Choose one of the PA online casinos from our list. You can use your desktop computer or mobile device to enter the casino site, or you can download the mobile app if there is one.
- Click on the Register/Join Now/ Sign Up button in the upper right corner of the casino.
- Fill in the registration form by providing personal details such as name, phone number, email, date of birth, and last four digits of your Social Security number to verify your account.
- Create a username and password. Log in to your account.
- Claim the no deposit bonus offers if one is provided.
- Head to the banking section, click on “Deposit,” and choose the method to fund your account.
- Claim the first deposit offer if there is one. Be sure to type in the promo codes if needed.
- Head to the casino lobby and choose your game.
- Start playing!
How to Withdraw Your PA Online Casino Winnings
Withdrawing your hard-earned winnings from Pennsylvania online casino sites is very simple. Much simpler than winning something, that’s for sure. To get hold of your winnings, you need to go through the following steps:
- Log in to your account.
- Go to the banking section of your account.
- Hit the “Withdraw” button.
- Choose the withdrawal method and the amount you wish to cash out.
- Confirm the transaction and wait between 24 hours and seven bank days for the withdrawal to be processed, depending on your method of choice.
Remember, you will need to verify your account by providing a photo ID to the casino before asking for a withdrawal.
Pennsylvania Online Sports Betting
After the Professional and Amateur Sports Protection Act (PASPA) was overturned in 2018, there were no obstacles to sports betting apps online in Pennsylvania. Considering that Gov. Tom Wolf had already signed bill H-271 into law back in 2017, it was only a matter of time before the first online sportsbooks would become available to Pennsylvanians.
In 2019, the first online sportsbooks opened their virtual doors, and their number continues to swell year after year. There, you can bet on all major sports leagues and competitions, including NFL, NHL, NBA, and others.
Pennsylvania Responsible Gambling
Since gambling is considered addictive, you must know how to gamble responsibly. You should only gamble with money you can afford to lose. Unfortunately, some players let their gambling habits spiral out of control. This is where the responsible gambling policies of PA online casinos can be life-saving.
Namely, Pennsylvania online casino sites are mandated by law to comply with responsible gaming policies, run self-exclusion programs, and support those in danger of becoming problem gamblers. There will be links to support groups and programs for problem gamblers where they can talk to someone about their issue and find help.
The Pennsylvania Gaming Control Board runs its own self-exclusion program and cooperates with many other programs nationwide, such as:
- Council on Compulsive Gambling in Pennsylvania
- National Council on Problem Gambling
- Pennsylvania’s Department of Drug and Alcohol Programs
Pennsylvania Online Gambling
Are online casinos legal in PA?
Yes, online casinos are entirely legal in the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania. The first casinos opened in 2019.
Who regulates online gambling in PA?
All forms of gambling in Pennsylvania are overseen and regulated by the Pennsylvania Gaming Control Board.
Are PA online casinos safe?
All casinos licensed by the Pennsylvania Gaming Control Board are deemed entirely safe and are required to have the latest security measures and safety protocols in place.
What are the best online casinos in Pennsylvania?
To find out which casinos are the best in Pennsylvania, browse our list, featuring the best sites in the state. These sites have great bonuses, games, and top-notch customer support so they can meet the needs of even the finickiest of casino players.
Am I required to live in Pennsylvania to play in the state’s online casinos?
No, you are not. You only need to be physically present in the state of Pennsylvania while playing.
Frequently Asked Questions
How will online casinos know whether I’m in Pennsylvania or not?
Pennsylvania online casino platforms use geo-location software to pinpoint your location to ensure you are within state lines before they let you place real-money bets.
What is the minimum online gambling age in Pennsylvania?
The minimum legal gambling age in the Keystone State is 21.
How to register for an online casino in Pennsylvania?
First of all, follow our links to the best casinos in PA. Then, click on the Register/Join Now button and fill out the details in the registration form. Then, deposit some funds into your account and start playing.
How many online casinos are there in Pennsylvania?
Currently, there are over 15 licensed online casinos in Pennsylvania, and their number is growing each year.
Does Pennsylvania have mobile casinos?
Sure thing. All online casinos in Pennsylvania have fully optimized mobile versions of their desktop sites. Also, some of them have native mobile apps for Android and iOS devices.