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Rhode Island Online Casinos & Gambling News June 2024

Rhode Island is considering legislation that would make all the best RI online casinos legal. Check out our exhaustive state guide on all the best Rhode Island online casinos that could be coming to the Ocean State as soon as 2024 when real money online gambling is expected to get the go ahead.

Our team of betting experts have the industry knowledge to guide you through all online casinos in Rhode Island if the Rhode Island Gaming Commission give the go ahead. We will provide regular updates on online casino legislation news, plus all the online casino Rhode Island welcome offers as they become available.

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It may be the smallest state in the union, but Rhode Island has always punched well above its weight when it comes to legal gambling.

Rhode Island has operated a state lottery since 1974, it has allowed live table games in its retail casinos for over a decade. It also embraced legal sports betting just months after the U.S. Supreme Court struck down the sports betting law that had banned the practice nationwide. So it seems likely the will embrace the world of online casino gambling sites as well.

Rhode Island even allows horse racing betting. But if you want to play casino games online like poker, blackjack, and online slots — electronic table games popularly known as iGaming — for real money, you can't as this remains prohibited. It's one of the few barriers to gambling that's still standing in the way of online casinos in Rhode Island.

 

The legacy of legal gambling in Rhode Island can be traced back nearly eight decades, to the horse-racing track that stood near where the Bally’s Twin River Casino is located today.

The state’s fervor for wagering has transitioned to the real money online gambling era. Rhode Island has maintained legal online horse racing betting even though it no longer has a track in the state where racing takes place, and it was one of the first states to introduce legal sports betting legislation after the nationwide ban was struck down in 2018.

Rhode Island is also one of the very few states with a minimum online betting age of 18, even for mobile sports betting, lower than the usual 21 in other US states.

☑️ Land-based Gambling Yes
☑️ Online Gambling No
☑️ Lottery Yes
☑️ Charitable or House-based Gambling Yes
☑️ Minimum Gambling Age 18

Rhode Island Online Sports Betting

In May 2018, the U.S. Supreme Court struck down the national law banning sports betting. One month later, then-Gov. Gina Raimondo signed off on legislation that would pave the way for legal sports betting in all Rhode Island's two land-based commercial casinos, which kicked off in November of 2018.

Online sports betting followed in 2019. Today, Rhode Island offers legal mobile sports betting through an online sportsbook which is operated by the Rhode Island Lottery, the only such provider in the state.

Rhode Island State Lottery

The Rhode Island Lottery has its beginnings in 1973 when a constitutional amendment creating a lottery in the Ocean State passed by a 3-to-1 margin. The “Lot” kicked off a year later, with its first ticket sold for 50 cents, and its first drawing held at the Rhode Island State House.

Now, the lottery offers draw and scratch-off games such as Keno, Bingo, and Lucky for Life, multi-state jackpots such as PowerBall and MegaMillions, and lottery terminals at retail casinos.

The 103 employees of the state lottery also oversee Rhode Island's two retail casinos and sports betting operations.

Social Casinos In Rhode Island

Although real money online casinos remain prohibited in Rhode Island, residents in the Ocean State can still play casino games play through social casinos which don’t cost any money to play. These popular casino games award virtual coins or chips. In the same way you would receive real cash for winning at a online casino.

While offshore Rhode Island casino sites may be tempting. Offshore casino sites are illegal and can be untrustworthy; there’s often little to no recourse, for instance, if your deposit disappears or you don’t receive your winnings after gambling with offshore casinos.

Add in the legal exposure, and it’s easy to see why Rhode Island residents should stick with playing at the best social casinos until legal Rhode Island online casinos are legalized.

Rhode Island Land-based Casinos

If you’re looking to play at an online casino for real money in the Ocean State, your only option, for now, is one of two retail Rhode Island casinos located in the state: Bally’s Twin River Casino and Bally’s Tiverton Casino Hotel.

Rhode Island has had live table casino games since 2013, with options now including poker, blackjack, roulette, craps, baccarat, and more. And then there are of course the slot machines—over 3,700 in Twin River Casino, and more than 1,000 in Tiverton—which accept bets ranging from 1 cent to $100.

Both Rhode Island casinos have a poker room and sports and race books as well. Twin River and Tiverton each became Bally’s branded in 2020, with Twin River opening 40,000 square feet of new gaming space in April of 2023.

Casino City Address
Twin River Casino Hotel Lincoln 100 Twin River Rd
Tiverton Casino Hotel Tiverton 777 Tiverton Casino Blvd

The answer to that question depends on what type of gambling you’re looking for. While online sports betting has been legal in Rhode Island since 2019, online casino gambling and online poker remain unregulated.

For casino gaming and poker, your legal options at present in Rhode Island are to visit a retail casino to gamble for real money or enjoy an online social casino to take part in games with no actual financial stakes. But for now, playing with real money in Rhode Island online casinos will have to wait.

Rhode Island Gambling History

📅 1974: The Rhode Island Lottery debuts with a weekly game with a top prize of $50,000

📅 1992: Legislation passes allowing video lottery terminals at the state's two pari-mutuel facilities, Lincoln Park (now Twin River Casino) and Newport Grand

📅 2012: A referendum passes allowing the addition of live table games at Twin River Casino, while a similar measure fails in Newport

📅 2015: A referendum passes to approve the construction of a new casino in Tiverton, and authorizing the facility to offer state-operated video lottery terminals and table games

📅 2018: Rhode Island becomes the eighth state to legalize retail sports betting at its two casinos

📅 2018: Tiverton Casino takes over Newport Grand's gaming license and opens with video lottery terminals and table games

📅 2019: Mobile sports betting debuts in Rhode Island, with the state lottery commission as sole operator

📅 2020: Rhode Island gambling laws are amended to allow online sports betting registration, changing the statute that had mandated sports bettors register in person at Twin River Casino or Tiverton Casino Hotel.

Will Rhode Island Legalize Online Casinos?

There’s a movement to legalize online casinos in the form of online casino games in Rhode Island thanks in part to Bally’s Casinos, which now operates Twin River Casino and Tiverton Casino Hotel.

In April of 2023, seven lawmakers led by state Sen. Dominick Ruggerio and state Rep. Gregory Costantino introduced gambling legislation requested by Bally’s that would legalize online gaming in Rhode Island.

The measure “seeks to enhance state revenue and better position the state’s casinos in the competitive New England gaming market,” the lawmakers said in a statement.

A recent study commissioned by Bally’s estimates online casino gambling would generate $93.3 million of gross gaming revenue in its first year, as much as $130.6 million in its fifth year, and a potential $210 million in Rhode Island gaming taxes over that five-year period.

Like sports betting, the law would use geolocation to ensure that participants in online casinos are within the state. The act if passed would take effect Jan. 1, 2024.

Online Casino Games Expected to Launch in Rhode Island

➡️ Slot Machines

Slot machines dominate retail casinos, and the same is true online as well. You’ll find more slot machines in online casinos than any other game, with options ranging from classic three-reel versions to big-money progressives to branded feature games with enhanced graphics and bonus features. Some land based casinos are limited by space, but this won't be a problem for RI online casinos. Allowing them to offer hundreds of different online games.

➡️ Lottery Games Online

Many online gambling casinos also feature online lottery games, which are very similar to the versions you’ll find at convenience stores and other brick-and-mortar retailers.

There are online bingo and keno, online scratch cards, sports-themed offerings, pick 3 or 4, and other available lottery games depending on which of the online casinos you're using.

➡️ Casino Poker

Another mainstay of both retail and online casino sites, video or casino poker is a classic game in which players are dealt five cards and can change them out to try to create the best hand.

Winnings can add up, and there’s always the chance of hitting the jackpot by betting the maximum and finding a royal flush.

➡️ Live Dealer Casinos

Players in Rhode Island looking for live dealer games can try games like blackjack, roulette, baccarat, pai gow poker, and super six with a live dealer, just as they would on a physical casino floor.

Certain dealers have specific table limits, just as in real life, and sometimes you can even select your seat at the “table.”

➡️ Roulette

Place chips on a number between 1 and 36, and spin the wheel—whether live or online, that’s the essence of roulette. Some online gambling casinos have multiple varieties available, given the differences in both the board and wheel in American, European, and French roulette. Players can also bet on red or black, odd or even, and other options.

Rhode Island Casinos Banking Options

How would you fund an online gambling account in the Ocean State? Given that the state lottery has a monopoly on mobile sports betting, it’s fair to assume that banking for potential online casino play would follow a similar process.

Banking options at the state-run sportsbook are currently rather limited, with deposits allowed only by debit card or automated clearing house (ACH) e-check.

And withdrawals can only go to the same bank account used to fund the sportsbook account, with a processing time of three to five days.

Who regulates online casinos in Rhode Island?

Since online casino gaming is currently illegal in Rhode Island, there is no state authority regulating it. But the bill recently introduced in the State House that would allow legal online gambling would put the state lottery commission in charge of it.

That’s no surprise, given that the lottery commission also oversees Rhode Island sports betting, retail casino gaming, and of course the lottery itself.

Rhode Island Online Gambling FAQs

Are Online Casinos Legal in Rhode Island?

Rhode Island online casinos are not yet legal, but there is a bill that's been introduced in the State House that could change that. If the bill passes you will be able to gamble at online casinos from the comfort of your own home.

Can you gamble online in Rhode Island?

Only if you're looking to take part in Rhode Island sports betting, or wager on horse racing. Online casino gaming for real money is currently still prohibited in the Ocean State. As long as you stick to sports betting, you can gamble online in Rhode Island.

What is the legal gambling age in Rhode Island?

The legal gambling age in the state of Rhode Island is 18. However, as online casinos are still not legal in the state. Being over the age of 18 currently only permits you to bet on sporting events such as horse racing.

When Will Rhode Island Legalize Online Gambling?

Hopefully by Jan. 1, 2024, which is when the bill that would legalize iGaming in Rhode Island would go into effect. But there are many steps remaining before that bill potentially becomes law, and allows residents of the state to enjoy online casino games.

About the Author

David Caraviello for Bookies.com
David Caraviello
Veteran sports journalist David Caraviello has covered college football, college basketball, motorsports and golf, covering all three US golf majors, the Daytona 500 and SEC football.