When Pennsylvania legalized online gaming in July last year, over a dozen companies lined up to acquire licenses. Some of these brands have since launched their apps and websites and are offering hundreds of games.
But is the KeyStone state ready to embrace this young industry? Statistics show online gaming is gaining popularity, albeit gradually. Here’s why.
A Small Number of Licensed Operators
Although PA has legalized all forms of gaming, it has only authorized twelve online casinos. As such, casino players in the state don’t have as many options as New Jersey or Britain.
New Jersey has thirty legal gaming websites, while Britain has more than 200 casinos and sportsbooks. That’s why they have much bigger gaming industries and collect more revenues than Pennsylvania.
Still, PA’s casinos serve thousands of players with a wide array of slots and table games. A few of the companies dominate over half of the market. But this could change in the future as more people in the Key Stone turn to casino gaming.
A Modest Variety of Games
Pennsylvania casino sites might not have thousands of games. But they provide a decent variety of slots, poker, blackjack, roulette, baccarat and craps. That’s why gaming in the Key Stone state is growing even though there are not as many gaming sites as NJ.
According to experts, the average online casino PA features 200+ games from a broad range of software developers. NetEnt, IGT, Microgaming, Playtech and Evolution Gaming are some of the most well-known developers with games at PA gaming apps.
In the slot scene, PA players can relish popular machines like Gonzo’s Quest, Twin Spin, Thunderstruck II, Starburst, and Game of Thrones. On the other end, they can play table games like poker, blackjack and roulette in a live setting.
Crucially, all gaming sites in the Key Stone state have mobile apps or support android and iOS devices. That way, your PC isn’t the only device you can use for gaming.
Free Spins and Bonuses
Although Pennsylvania doesn’t have many licensed casinos, they provide plenty of bonuses to new and existing players. They are more generous to newcomers for an obvious reason: it’s more challenging to find new customers than to maintain regular ones.
As a new customer, you receive two types of bonuses: no deposit free spins and deposit-based offers. The first type of reward is easy to claim. All you need is to create an account and log in. The second option involves bigger rewards but after your first deposit.
Notably, many bonuses in PA are offered as a percentage of your deposit. Some operators give you 25% of your amount, while more generous companies match your money 100% up to $1500.
As mentioned, you qualify for loyalty bonuses at most gaming sites. In many cases, you receive points every time you play. You can then redeem them for prizes or cash in a few weeks. If you’re a VIP player, you could receive more than bonuses: account manager, cruise trip, sports car, cash prizes, to name a few.
One of the reasons PA’s online gaming scene is still small is that not every banking option accepts payments to casinos. Some debits and banks don’t let their customers transfer money to gaming websites.
For that reason, it will take some time before there are as many players in the Key Stone state as there are in NJ and the UK. Presently, players from PA can deposit and withdraw their money through PayPal Skrill, PayNearMe, ACH, Visa and MasterCard.
With that in mind, PA players don’t experience any payment challenges. They might not have access to every banking option in the country. But they have more than enough ways to deposit and withdraw their cash. They also have favourable limits, from $5 to as much as $10,000.
Foreign casinos are a boon for the PA gaming industry. They add variety to the sector and help KeyStone players the best of international casinos. Let’s begin with games. Casinos from Malta and the UK have a lot more games than those licensed in PA.
The average casino in Britain features 500+ games from over 20 software providers. The list includes popular companies like NetEnt and Microgaming. And it also features medium-sized and small developers with exciting but less known games.
When it comes to payments, overseas operators support more banking options. That’s because they target players from many countries. The same case applies to bonuses. They serve millions of people with varying needs. And as a result, they have offers targeting nearly every kind of player.
Pennsylvania has some of the biggest taxes for online gaming in the country. Ironically, it has one of the least personal income taxes at 3.07%. Sportsbooks part with 36% of their profits while casinos pay 54% of their slot profits as tax.
On the flip side, PA charges players 25% of their profits as taxes. And if they don’t provide a social security number, they part with 3.07% more. Comparatively, New Jersey charges casinos 13%, while Britain charges these businesses 21%.
Against that backdrop, it’s not surprising that most gaming companies prefer New Jersey or to remain in the UK than face PA’s high taxes. Given a choice, players in the US would also choose to play at low-tax states like New Jersey.
High taxes have a significant impact on the gaming experience of people in PA. For example, sportsbooks have fewer betting lines compared to bookmakers in NJ. And casinos might not provide as many high-paying games as their counterparts in the Garden State.
Summary and Conclusion
Pennsylvania is one of four states that have legalized all forms of online gaming. The industry is growing gradually, but this will change in due time. Presently, some banking methods don’t provide payments to casinos.
Additionally, not every developer is licensed to provide games in the Key Stone State. But as mentioned, the gaming industry is PA will grow with time.