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When will online casinos and spots betting happen?
Online casinos coming Q2 of 2019
When it comes to Pennsylvania online casinos, nailing down an exact launch date is tough, but it will be sometime in the first half of 2019.
So far, the Pennsylvania Gaming Control Board (PGCB) has approved ten PA casinos for their interactive gaming licenses.
PA sports betting launched in November 2018
When it comes to PA sports betting, the news is much brighter. Perhaps seeing how much New Jersey, Mississippi, and other new markets with sports betting are raking in, sports betting is on track to beat online casinos to the Keystone State.
It initially looked as though Parx Casino would be the first to market, but Hollywood Casino at Penn National beat everyone. Its sportsbook, run by William Hill, officially launched on Saturday, Nov. 17.
Next up were Rivers Casino and SugarHouse Casino, both of which launched on Dec. 13. Parx launched on Jan. 10 followed by South Philadelphia Turf Club on Jan. 17 and Harrah’s Philadelphia Jan. 24.
What does the PA online casino market look like?
While sports betting is still something only seven of the 13 licensed casinos are taking part in, most everyone is getting involved in the PA online casino industry in one way or another. In fact, there are also several outside companies taking part.
Here is a look at all the companies involved in online casinos, who their partners are, and where they are in the process:
|Casino||Existing online partners||Potential or speculated partner||Sports betting partners||Interactive application status||Sports betting application status|
|Harrah's||888||N/A||Scientific Games||Conditionally approved||Conditionally approved|
|Hollywood (Penn National)||N/A||IGT||William Hill||Conditionally approved||Launched Nov. 17|
|Meadows||N/A||IGT||William Hill||Did not apply||Has not applied|
|Mount Airy||888 / PokerStars||N/A||BetStars||Conditionally approved||Has not applied|
|Parx||GAN||N/A||Kambi||Conditionally approved||Launched Jan. 10|
|Rivers||SugarHouse / Rush Street Interactive||N/A||Kambi||Did not apply||Launched Dec. 15|
|Sands Bethlehem||N/A||N/A||N/A||Conditionally approved||Have not applied|
|SugarHouse||Rush Street Interactive / Kambi||N/A||Kambi||Conditionally approved||Launched Dec. 15|
|Valley Forge||IGT / GAN||partypoker / GVC||FanDuel||Conditionally approved||Conditionally approved|
|Stadium Park Philly Live! Casino||N/A||GAN||N/A||Conditionally approved||Have not applied|
|Presque Isle Downs||Golden Nugget||NetEnt||SBTech, IGT||Conditionally approved||Application pending|
|Lady Luck Nemacolin||N/A||N/A||N/A||Did not apply||Have not applied|
|Mohegan Sun Pocono||Kindred||N/A||N/A||Conditionally approved||Have not applied|
|MGM Resorts||bwin.party||partypoker / GVC||N/A||Approved QGE||Not eligible|
|Golden Nugget NJ||NYX||N/A||N/A||Approved QGE||Not eligible|
10 of 13 PA casinos taking part
PGCB has conditionally approved the following casinos for online slots, online table games, and online poker:
- Harrah’s Philadelphia
- Hollywood Casino
- Mount Airy Casino
- Parx Casino
- Sands Bethlehem
- SugarHouse Casino
- Valley Forge Casino
- Mohegan Sun Pocono
Two other casinos opted for online table games and slots licenses, but will not offer online poker. Those properties are Presque Isle Downs and the forthcoming Stadium Casino project.
That leaves three casinos sitting out for now. Rivers Casino initially applied, but rescinded its application. Lady Luck Nemacolin and The Meadows are not taking part, likely deferring to their sister properties of Presque Isle and Hollywood Casino respectively.
MGM and Golden Nugget hoping to get in the game too
With 11 leftover interactive licenses, PGCB opened up the application to qualified gaming entities (QGE) from outside of Pennsylvania.
Rather than partner with an in-state casino, MGM Resorts and Golden Nugget Atlantic City opted to apply. MGM is seeking all three categories of license. Golden Nugget, on the other hand, will not seek an online poker license.
In January, PGCB approved both as QGEs. Next up for the companies is to file petitions for interactive gaming licenses in the categories each are seeking.
PA online lottery is already an online gambling option
While casino lovers of PA count the days until launch, there is one way to pass the time. As part of the gambling expansion law, the state-legalized PA online lottery. Pennsylvania’s iLottery launched in May 2017 with a dozen or so online instant games.
These online instant games are like a scratch-off ticket you would buy at the store, but more interactive. Online instants often include bonus games in addition to the scratch-off component, allowing you to multiply your winnings on each ticket.
As part of the rollout, the PA Lottery also introduced a revamped PA Lottery mobile app. While you cannot purchase lottery draw tickets online just yet, you can use the app to play instant games, check winning numbers, and scan your draw tickets to find out if you have a winner.
You can check out the PA Lottery app today!