Legal gambling in New York runs the gamut from Las Vegas-style casinos and racinos, betting on horse races, and even a robust lottery. You won’t find any legal online casinos in NY, though there are conversations happening in the state legislature related to online casino gambling.
In the meantime, there are four commercial casinos and several tribal casinos in New York. Additional downstate casinos could be part of the landscape in the future. You will find legal online sports betting in the state, too, with 8 sportsbook apps available.
Guests and residents of New York can play slots, table games, and more, or place a bet at either online or retail sportsbooks. Let’s walk you through everything you need to know about NY gambling, the potential for real money online casinos, and what is legal or illegal.
UPDATED: May 27, 2022
As bills to legalize online casino and online poker play sit idle in the state legislature, attention on gaming in the state turns to the licensing process for three downstate brick-and-mortar casinos. Currently, the state is in the process of forming bodies that will play roles in making decisions about who will receive licenses and where casinos will land.
Among the likely bidders for licenses is MGM, which already operates the Class-II facility Empire City in Yonkers. Other interested parties are Bally’s, Hard Rock, the Las Vegas Sands Co., and Resorts World. Wynn Resorts recently confirmed its interest as well.
Can you gamble online in New York?
It depends. New York is home to online horse betting sites like TVG, legal daily fantasy sports apps such as DraftKings and FanDuel, and several legal online sportsbooks. So there are a few legal New York online gambling options in the state. NY online casinos have yet to manifest but guests and residents of the Empire State can take advantage of the short proximity to New Jersey and experience online gambling at its finest. New Yorkers can also enjoy a number of sweepstakes casino sites and social casino sites.
Are online casinos legal in New York?
No, online casinos are not legal in New York. However, a plan to change that scenario is in the works. State Sen. Joseph Addabbo, who has long been a proponent of gambling expansion in the Empire State, filed SB 8412 in February 2022 in an effort to add online casinos to the existing offerings in New York.
Not to be outdone, Addabbo oft-counterpart Assemblyman Gary Pretlow announced in March 2022 that he would sponsor a similar bill. However, Pretlow indicated that his bill would not come until 2023, and all signs indicate that Addabbo’s bill won’t find much traction until then, either. So, although online casinos and poker are likely a year or more away in New York, it is possible to see them on the horizon.
Can you play slots online in NY?
As mentioned, all types of online casino games are illegal in New York — for now. However, sweepstakes casino games such as Funzpoints and social casino sites such as Luckyland Slots and Chumba Casino offer a version of online slot games that are legal in New York. They are similar to slots you might find at NY casinos or real money casino apps. You can also take a trip to nearby New Jersey or Pennsylvania where all forms of online casino gaming are legal.
Will NY regulate online casinos in the future?
Possibly. There is an active bill in the New York Assembly that would allow online casinos and online poker to proceed in the Empire State. However, SB 8412 likely won’t receive serious consideration until 2023, when it will be weighed against a similar bill, which an assemblyman has vowed to bring forward in a year’s time. The assemblyman, Gary Pretlow, has stated that his main focus is on completing three downstate casinos.
“My priority right now is the acceleration of additional licenses and making sure online sports betting is at a place where it is more sustainable and can be more predictable,” Pretlow told PlayNY.
It doesn’t mean there is no chance. Addabbo and Pretlow both feel there is momentum behind expanding online gambling but, Pretlow also noted, “a lot of people are concerned that there’s too much gambling. Some people want to pull back a little.”
Legal NY online gambling vs. offshore sites
Since there are no legal online casino sites in New York, some might be confused as to why a Google search says differently. The reason? These are illegal online gambling websites. All of these sites that accept New York players are based offshore and come with a fair share of risks for New York gamblers, especially when it comes to safety and security.
A number of offshore online casinos have sketchy track records that cannot be trusted. Secondly, they are unregulated here in the US. This means, if your money disappeared, there would be no course of legal action to get it back. Lastly, creating an account with an offshore site puts your sensitive information at risk. The risk of your account or the site itself getting hacked is high. So if you do lose your money, there is no legal recourse for you to get it back.
Simply put: The safest place to gamble online in New York is at one of the sweepstakes casinos mentioned above or by driving across the Hudson into New Jersey to play at NJ online casinos.
Who will regulate online gambling in New York?
There is no government body currently set up to regulate online gambling in New York because there are no legal online casinos in operation in the state. The only viable option, should an online gambling expansion be one day legalized, is the New York State Gaming Commission. The NYSGC oversees all gambling in the state, including the lottery and sports betting.
What is the legal gambling age in NY?
The legal gambling age in New York is 21 years old. However, when it comes to horse betting, the state lottery, and tribal casinos, customers can be 18 years and older. If online casinos are legalized, it is likely that you will need to be at least 21 years of age.
Types of legal gambling in New York
It may seem like New York gambling options are limited due to the omission of online casinos. However, New York does provide a number of gambling options for those in the Empire State, including the following:
- NY Lottery
- Horse racing and horse betting
- Commercial and tribal casinos
- Charitable gaming such as bingo and raffles
- Retail and online sportsbooks
Horse racing in New York
The Empire State is home to one of the three legs of the Triple Crown, the Belmont Stakes. Additionally, online horse betting has been legal in New York for many years and is regulated by the NY State Gaming Commission.
The state is home to several betting sites but none more prominent than TVG, which has been processing online horse bets for several decades.
TVG is a 24-hour broadcast network specifically for horse racing and its presence runs through the entire state. TVG has a mobile app and browser site for customers across New York.
New York racetracks include:
- Belmont Park
- Saratoga Race Course
- Aqueduct Racetrack
- Batavia Downs Gaming & Hotel
- Finger Lakes Gaming & Racetrack
- Monticello Casino & Raceway
- Tioga Downs Casino & Resort
- Vernon Downs Casino & Hotel
- Yonkers Raceway
The state is also home to more than 100 off-track betting locations (OTB). These are small venues where customers can place bets and watch races.
In May 2021, BetMGM partnered with the NYRA Bets – the New York Racing Association’s wagering platform – to create BetMGM Racebook, though it has not yet officially launched.
Are there casinos in New York?
Yes, there are 11 casinos in New York, seven of which are owned by federally recognized Native American tribes. Legalized casino-style gambling began soon after the Indian Gaming Regulatory Act was passed in 1988. As a result, in 2013, legal provisions were made to add up to seven non-tribal casinos, four of which are in operation today. The three downstate casinos are in the works, with the NY Assembly negotiating and discussing tax rates, license fees and more during the 2022 session.
del Lago Resort & Casino
- Address: 1133 Waterloo, NY 13165
- Phone: 315-946-1777
- Owner/Operator: Peninsula Pacific Entertainment (P2E)
- Live Poker: Yes
Located in the Finger Lakes Region of New York, del Lago Resort & Casino features a hotel and spa plus more than 1,700 slots including Lucky Larry’s Lobstermania and the Quick Hit series. There are also 66 table games, including craps and several variants of roulette, and a 14-table poker room.
Resorts World Catskills
- Address: 888 Resorts World Dr., Monticello, NY 12701
- Phone: 833-586-9358
- Owner/Operator: Empire Resorts
- Live Poker: Yes
A true Las Vegas-style casino just 95 miles from New York City, Resorts World in the Catskill region is home to an 18-story hotel and a casino floor featuring 100,000 square feet of gaming space. There are 1,600 slot machines, a poker room, a Top Golf Swing Suite and the Sportsbook 360.
Rivers Casino & Resort Schenectady
- Address: 1 Rush St, Schenectady, NY 12305
- Phone: 518-579-8800
- Owner/Operator: Rush Street
- Live Poker: Yes
Rivers Casino & Resort in Schenectady features penny slots, big slot titles like 88 Fortunes, video poker, keno, and a wide selection of table games. Plus, there’s a table game multi-link progressive that ties together Mississippi Stud, Let it Ride, and Three Card Poker. Alongside the casino floor are a hotel and an event center.
Tioga Downs Casino Resort
- Address: 2384 W River Rd, Nichols, NY 13812
- Phone: 888-946-8464
- Owner/Operator: Jeffrey Gural, CEO of American Racing and Entertainment
- Live Poker: Yes
This county-fair-themed racino near the Pennsylvania border originally opened in 1976, but was revived in 2006 by Jeffrey Gural. It offers harness racing, simulcast betting and a FanDuel Sportsbook on site, plus more than 800 video lottery terminals. There are also more than 500 slot machines ranging from penny slots to $5 play.
Types of games at NY casinos
- Table games like roulette and craps
- Sports betting
- Live poker
Tribal casinos in New York
Three Native American tribes now operate seven casinos in New York. These feature over 10,000 slot machines, as well as table games and live poker rooms.
|Akwesasne Mohawk Casino||Saint Regis Mohawk Tribe||873 NY-37||Hogansburg||518-358-2222||Y|
|Point Place Casino||Oneida Indian Nation||450 452 NY-31||Bridgeport||315-366-9610||N|
|Seneca Allegany Casino||Seneca Nation of New York||777 Seneca Allegany Blvd.||Salamanca||888-913-3377||N|
|Seneca Buffalo Creek Casino||Seneca Nation of New York||1 Fulton St.||Buffalo||877-873-6322||N|
|Seneca Niagra Resort & Casino||Seneca Nation of New York||310 4th St.||Niagra Falls||877-873-6322||N|
|Turning Stone Resort Casino||Oneida Indian Nation||5218 Patrick Road||Verona||800-771-7711||Y|
|Yellow Brick Road Casino||Oneida Indian Nation||800 W Genesse St.||Chittenango||315-366-9400||N|
History of gambling in New York
In the end, the history of gambling in New York is not as complicated as it appears. With the exception of legalizing mobile sports betting, which took a long while and several missteps, the state has enjoyed moments of peace when it comes to gambling expansions. The current environment includes casino gaming, horse racing, sports betting, and a state lottery.
2022: Online sports betting starts on Saturday, Jan. 8, with four of the nine licensed operators starting to take bets.
2021: In April, Gov. Andrew Cuomo adds mobile sports betting to his state budget, paving the way for lawmakers to craft a bill to regulate and legalize online wagering.
2019: Sports betting in New York commenced on July 17, when Rivers Casino Schenectady opened up the state’s first retail sportsbook. Turning Stone Resort Casino was the first tribal casino in New York to begin taking wagers on Aug. 2.
2013: Lawmakers pass a gambling expansion bill allowing for up to seven non-tribal casinos in the state. Thus far, only four have been built.
1993: A few years after the Indian Gaming Regulatory Act changed the fortunes of tribes across the US, the Oneida Indian Nation signed the state’s first tribal compact, opening Turning Stone Casino Resort in July.
1967: The New York State Lottery launched as the third US lottery after New Hampshire and Puerto Rico. It is overseen by the NY State Gaming Commission.
Responsible gambling in NY
There are several responsible gambling options in New York including:
NYS HOPEline: Available 24/7 by calling 1-877-8-HOPENY
Voluntary Self-Exclusion: Complete the available form on the NYS website and mail to:
New York State Gaming Commission Director of Education & Community Relations
PO BOX 7500
Schenectady, NY 12301
- Helpline: 877-846-7369
- Main phone: 518-867-4084
- Address: 100 Great Oaks Blvd., Suite 104, Albany, NY 12203