Pennsylvania legalized online gambling as of the summer of 2019, making it the fourth state to join the party after New Jersey, Delaware, and Nevada.
The Keystone state comes just second to Nevada with the largest gambling market in the United States.
Before 2019, gamblers in Pennsylvania were either playing poker in their friends’ basement or driving to the closest brick and mortar to try their luck on a game of slots.
Now that online gambling has been legalized in the state, players can skip the road trip and sign up for an online casino to play their favorite games.
Land-based casinos in Pennsylvania can hold up to 5,000 machines and offer games like video poker, slots, blackjack, roulette, three card poker, and craps, while online casinos have much smaller libraries but still offer the classics.
A player must be over the age of 20 and located in the state’s borders to access an online casino or enter a brick and mortar.
Online Casinos in Pennsylvania
While online casinos and poker have been legal in Pennsylvania since 2017, it took two years for the first casino to come out with an online platform.
Compared to New Jersey who started launching online casinos way back in 2013, this is still a new industry for PA. Regardless, there are already numerous online casinos for players to sign up for.
Each platform has hundreds of games in the library with competitive bonuses to offer new players.
Top 10 Reasons to Play in an Online Casino
- Play from the comfort of your own home
- Available 24/7
- Claim big welcome bonuses
- Save money on travel and other amenities at the land-based casino (drinks, food)
- No waiting in long lines
- Collect points every time you play online to use on casino rewards
- Better RTP on games
- Avoid social interaction
- Play for free to practice a new game
- Huge game selection
Why playing online is better for you
Online casinos are becoming extremely popular in the state, mainly because of convenience and the money players are saving. We’ve listed a few of the main reasons why it would be beneficial to sign up for an online casino instead of head to the brick and mortar to wager.
- Bonuses: You won’t find any bonuses at the land-based casino, compared to online where operators hand them out regularly. These types of bonuses can come in the form of free money, free spins, and match deposits.
- Convenience: Online casinos are readily available 24/7. You can play whenever you like from anywhere inside the state.
- Money: Everyone wants to save money, and staying in to play is exactly how you can do that. By choosing to play at an online casino versus the land-based, you will save money on gas expenses and drinks or other activities you may be tempted with on the casino floor.
List of Online Casinos in Pennsylvania
SugarHouse currently offers one of the best welcome bonuses in the state! Sign up now and you’ll receive a 100% match on your first deposit.
The bonus has a 1x wagering requirement, which is the lowest in PA currently. You can click the link below to get started.
Parx is one of the only casinos in the state to have Free Spins offered in the welcome package. New players can claim a 100% deposit match up to $500, plus 500 free spins to use on select slots!
Hollywood Casino has a bonus ready for you before you even sign up. Once you complete registration, you’ll be rewarded with $25 in free play. After you make your first deposit, Hollywood will match it 100% capping it at $500.
PokerStars was the first operator to bring online poker to Pennsylvania. Players will find the poker platform on the same site as the online casino, which makes it easy to switch between the two.
Sign up to PokerStars and claim a three-piece welcome package offer! You can read more about the offer, here.
New players will get $10 right away to use on any games in the Unibet library after they have signed up. Next, have your first deposit matched by 100% up to $500!
BetAmerica is one of the more recent casinos to launch online and might be the only site to not match your first deposit by 100%.
Instead, BetAmerica will offer you a 25% match bonus up to $500. Players will notice the sportsbook integrated with the casino
FanDuel has a unique offer compared to other operators in PA, offering 24 hours of risk-free betting instead of a 100% deposit match.
The bonus is worth $200 and can be used on all games in the library. FanDuel will also return any money you lose back to your account.
BetRivers is the sister casino to SugarHouse and offers the same game library and welcome bonus. This means you can claim the same 100% match bonus worth $250, with a 1x wagering requirement.
Caesars is the most recent casino to enter the PA market and launched through Harrah’s Philadelphia. Caesars is a brand known around the country, with an online casino already doing very well in New Jersey.
You can claim a 100% match on your first deposit worth up to $300!
Land-Based Casinos in Pennsylvania
Before online casinos launched in Pennsylvania, players had to make their way to the local brick and mortar in order to place a legal wager.
There are currently 12 casinos in the state, with a 13th under construction and expected to open in 2021.
Parx Casino is the largest casino in the state, hosting over 3,200 game machines. It’s also one of the most popular, bringing in more revenue than most of its competition every year.
Mohegan Sun Pocono and Harrah’s Philadelphia also had highly rated reviews and seems to be the favorites for venues in the state.
If you want to find the gambling hot-spot in Pennsylvania, we recommend heading to Philadelphia or Pittsburgh. Both have great casino options with dining amenities and entertainment.
Land-based casinos in PA are broken down into 3 categories. We explain each further, below.
Types of Casinos in Pennsylvania
There are three types of casinos in Pennsylvania: racinos, resorts, and stand-alone. Mini casinos will soon make up the fourth category, once they start opening in the state. The categories are broken down as follows:
- six horse races tracks (racinos)
- five stand-alone casinos
- two hotel resorts
All of the casinos in Pennsylvania can have a maximum of 5,000 machines, except for the resort licensees, which are allowed up to 600. Additionally, all casinos in Pennsylvania are allowed to have table games.
Racetrack Casinos in Pennsylvania
When a venue combines horse track betting and casino games together, you have a Category 1 casino, otherwise known as a racino. These types of casinos can hold up to 5,000 machines and feature a track to watch and wager on horses.
The following venues are classified as a Category 1 in PA:
- Parx Casino
- Harrah’s Philadelphia
- Mohegan Sun Pocono
- Presque Isles Downs
- The Meadows Racetrack and Casino
- Hollywood Casino at Penn National
Stand-Alone Casinos in Pennsylvania
What’s interesting about Standalone casinos is the requirement that at least two out of the five must be in Philadelphia, with another in Pittsburgh. All of the casinos are allowed to have the same amount of games and slots as a Category 1.
The following venues have standalone Category 2 licenses in PA:
- Mount Airy Casino Resort
- SugarHouse Casino
- Sands Bethlehem
- Rivers Casino
- Live! Philadelphia Casino & Hotel
Hotel Resort Casinos in Pennsylvania
Category 3 casinos (resorts) are the smallest type of venue in the state and can hold about 600 slot machines.
- Lady Luck Casino Nemacolin
- Valley Forge Casino Resort
Mini-casinos have recently been introduced as part of the gambling expansion in the state. They have the capacity to host anywhere between 300 to 750 slot machines and 30 casino games.
A handful of land-based casinos have started making bids to operate one, starting at 7.5 million. When auctioning had first started for mini-casinos, more than $50,000,000 was being offered. The next round of auctions will kick off in September 2020.
Pennsylvania Land-Based Casinos Map
You can easily see all casino locations by using our Pennsylvania casinos map. To zoom in, just click the + (plus) sign in the lower right corner of the map, or to zoom out, just click the – (minus) sign in the same area.
To move the map of casinos in Pennsylvania, click and hold down either of your mouse buttons. Then use the hand icon to drag the map in whichever direction you desire.
Each of the red icons on the map is a casino location. Just click on any red icon to see the name of the casino at that location. If you want more information on that casino, simply click again on the casino’s name and it will direct you to another page with detailed information on that particular casino, including address, phone number, toll-free phone number, room rates, casino size, dining information, games offered, availability of discounts for seniors, any special features, and a direct link to that casino’s website.
List of Land-Based Casinos in Pennsylvania
Harrah’s Philadelphia Casino & Racetrack
Harrah’s Philadelphia Casino & Racetrack is a harness racing track and casino located along the Chester, Pennsylvania waterfront. This casino has over 2,000 slot machines and offers the largest collection of table games in the Pennsylvania/Delaware area, including blackjack, craps, roulette, baccarat and more.
• Address: 777 Harrah’s Blvd, Chester, PA 19013
• Phone: (484) 490-1800
• Website: https://www.caesars.com/harrahs-philly
Hollywood Casino at Penn National
Hollywood Casino at Penn National features a thoroughbred racetrack and casino, 10 restaurants, live entertainment, slots, poker and other table games near Harrisburg, Hershey, and Lancaster.
• Address: 777 Hollywood Blvd, Grantville, PA 17028
• Phone: (717) 469-2211
• Website: https://www.hollywoodpnrc.com/
Lady Luck Nemacolin
Lady Luck Casino Nemacolin is calling your name. Answer the call and find everything from Craps and Roulette to Blackjack and Mississippi Stud to nearly 600 slot, keno and video poker machines in a wide range of denominations.
• Address: 4067 National Pike, Farmington, PA 15437
• Phone: (724) 329-7500
• Website: https://www.ladylucknemacolin.com/
The Meadows Racetrack & Casino
The Meadows Racetrack & Casino offers world class casino gaming, dining, events, entertainment, and luxury hotel just 30 minutes south of Pittsburgh. The casino floor has more than 2,500 of the hottest and newest slot machines, over 65 table games, a poker room with 14 tables and a brand-new Sportsbook.
• Address: 210 Racetrack Rd, Washington, PA 15301
• Phone: (724) 503-1200
• Website: https://www.meadowsgaming.com/
Mohegan Sun Pocono
Mohegan Sun Pocono is one of the biggest gaming destinations in the region featuring over 1,900 slot machines, more than 50 table games and live harness racing. The 82,000 square-foot gaming floor includes a luxurious high-limit slot room and a private player’s lounge.
• Address: 1280 PA-315, Wilkes-Barre, PA 18702
• Phone: (570) 831-2100
• Website: https://mohegansunpocono.com/
Mount Airy Resort & Casino
With over 70 table games, ranging from blackjack, craps, roulette and Baccarat, and over 1,800 of the hottest slots, Mount Airy Resort & Casino is a high-energy casino where every minute is a thrill.
• Address: 312 Woodland Rd, Mt Pocono, PA 18344
• Phone: (877) 682-4791
• Website: https://mountairycasino.com/
Parx Casino and Racing
Parx Casino and Racing is a Thoroughbred horse racing venue and the largest casino gaming complex in Pennsylvania. The casino hosts over 3,300 slots and 188 live table games as well as live entertainment, thrilling promotions, exciting events and a convenient gift shop!
• Address: 2999 Street Rd, Bensalem, PA 19020
• Phone: (215) 639-9000
• Website: https://www.parxcasino.com/bensalem/casino
Presque Isle Downs and Casino
Presque Isle Downs & Casino is a casino and horse racing track near Erie, Pennsylvania, owned and operated by Churchill Downs Inc. With over 1,500 slots, 32 table games, 7 poker tables and 50 TwinSpires sports betting kiosks, you’ll find so many ways to win you won’t know where to start!
• Address: 8199 Perry Hwy, Erie, PA 16509
• Phone: (866) 374-3386
• Website: https://www.presqueisledowns.com/
Rivers Casino Pittsburgh
Rivers Casino in Pittsburgh, PA features non-stop fun with 2900 slots, 100+ table games, a 30-table poker room, 5 restaurants and live entertainment.
• Address: 777 Casino Dr, Pittsburgh, PA 15212
• Phone: (412) 231-7777
• Website: https://www.riverscasino.com/pittsburgh/
Rivers Casino Philadelphia
Rivers Casino Philadelphia, formerly SugarHouse Casino, is Philly’s hottest gaming destination on the waterfront with thrilling slots & table games, live entertainment, and the best restaurants.
• Address: 1001 N Delaware Ave, Philadelphia, PA 19125
• Phone: (877) 477-3715
• Website: https://www.riverscasino.com/philadelphia/
Sands Casino Resort Bethlehem
This casino features over 150 table games, state-of-the-art slot machines, live dealer stadium gaming and more. Sands Casino is Pennsylvania’s best casino for your favorite table games. Whether you’re a high-roller or a novice, you’ll always have a place at their tables, featuring Blackjack, Roulette, Baccarat, Three Card Poker and Caribbean Stud poker.
• Address: 77 Wind Creek Blvd, Bethlehem, PA 18015
• Phone: (484) 777-7777
• Website: https://windcreek.com/bethlehem
Valley Forge Casino Resort
As the region’s only full-amenity gaming resort, Valley Forge features a 40,000-square-foot gaming floor where you’ll find 850 of the hottest and most popular slot machines, along with 50 of the best table games, including Blackjack, Craps, Roulette, Pai Gow Poker, and Baccarat.
• Address: 1160 1st Ave, King of Prussia, PA 19406
• Phone: (610) 354-8118
• Website: https://www.vfcasino.com/
History of Gambling in Pennsylvania
Legal gambling first began in Pennsylvania in the late 1950s when the first horse track was opened. Pennsylvanians could legally wager on horse races the same way they do today.
It wasn’t until the early 2000s when a bill was passed to allow racetracks to apply for slot licenses.
Slot machines quickly became very popular and brought in millions of dollars to the state. After seeing the potential growth and money the state could be bringing in from gambling, table games were next to be legalized in 2010.
From 2010 to 2016, there had been a lot of discussions about starting online gambling in Pennsylvania, but not much was done about it. Finally, in 2017, a bill was passed allowing casinos to start operating online.
Pennsylvania Gambling Laws
In October of 2017, Governor Tom Wolf signed a Pennsylvania online gambling bill, legalizing online gambling in the state. This new bill legalized sports betting and daily fantasy sports and gave the green light for operators to launch online casinos and online poker.
The new legislation welcomed regulatory policies and licensing regulations, leading to big money-making opportunities for the state.
This meant an exciting start for operators who now sought out licenses for online casinos and sports betting sites, as well as iGaming software companies and providers who were anxious to get their foot in the door to this lucrative industry.
Several casinos went ahead and launched online, with nearly a dozen online in the PA market today.
Players who are within the state lines and at least 21 years old, can wager real money on online slots, poker, and casino table games. There are also a number of sports betting sites and facilities to bet in.
The minimum gambling age is 18 for pari-mutuel betting and 21 at casinos. All Pennsylvania casinos are open 24 hours.
The Pennsylvania Gaming Control Board began in 2004 and is responsible for overseeing all land-based and online casinos in the state. This includes testing out different games and making sure each casino abides by the state laws to operate.
Gambling In Pennsylvania Today
A lot of land-based venues took a hit this past year (2020) as COVID-19 caused most operators to close their doors to the public. Recently, most casinos were able to open again with new safety regulations in place.
With all of this going on, online gambling has become even more popular with Pennsylvanians. It has been the only source of legal gambling that players have had access to and is already starting to generate more money than the brick and mortar.
One of the biggest gambling events in the state is the Pennsylvania Derby. Every year, thousands of people go to Parx Racing and Casino where the race is held and watch thoroughbred horses run the track.
Spectators will place wagers on the horse they believe will win, as well as other odds.
The Pennsylvania Derby first began in 1979 and has always been held at Parx Racing and Casino (known as the Keystone Race Track in the ’80s).
Thoroughbred horses that are at least three years in age and weigh 122 lbs are eligible to compete. The track is dirt and left-handed.
As of 2019, the purse has been raised to $1 million, plus trainers and owners have the chance to get a $50,000 bonus if their horse wins the race.
Whether you’re playing online or at the brick and mortar, everyone has a chance to win some huge jackpots! We’ve compiled a list of the biggest wins we have seen in recent PA history.
Here’s hoping you get as lucky as these players in the future!
- Valley Forge Casino: Less than 24 hours after Valley Forge reopened its doors in June, a player won $1,700 while playing the Lightning Cash slot.
- Mount Airy Casino: A player won over $562,00 while playing Mississippi Stud, one of the largest jackpots to be won at Mount Airy ever!
- BetRivers Online Casino: A lucky online player wagered $1 on the Mercy of God’s slot to win $104,821!
How much do you really know about the gambling scene in Pennsylvania? We’ve collected a couple of fun facts all about casinos in PA!
Did you know?
In 2017, Pennsylvania casinos broke a revenue record and raked in $3.227 billion over the year!
Did you know?
Truck stops are legally able to offer slot machines, with a cap at five machines per stop. The first truck stop operating in PA was Rutter’s and opened in 2019.
Did you know?
The Pennsylvania Gaming Control Board has been responsible for monitoring every casino on and offline in the state since 2004.
For more information on visiting casinos in Pennsylvania, or general tourism information, call their Office of Tourism at (800) 237-4363 or visit their website at www.visitpa.com.
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