Best Online Casinos in South Africa 2019
South Africa’s internet gambling laws are strict. Nevertheless, many online casinos still serve this country. If you live in the Rainbow Nation, you can enjoy access to plenty of gaming sites. Your only problem may be sorting through them all. We’ve thoroughly reviewed many online casinos in South Africa to bring you the best. You can consult our reviews to learn about a casino’s banking options, bonuses, customer support, game selection, and more. On this page, you can also read about South Africa’s online gambling laws, licensing, mobile casinos, and bonuses.
Factors we use to choose the best online casinos in South Africa
Hundreds of gaming sites operate in South Africa. Therefore, you may have trouble finding the top online casinos on your own.
We’ve poured hours into figuring out which South African internet casinos rise above the rest. The main criteria we consider include:
- Bonuses & promotions – A quality welcome bonus helps you quickly earn extra money at new casinos. Promotions let you continue chasing bonuses afterward.
- Customer support – A good customer service team answers questions and resolves issues in a timely and knowledgeable manner.
- Deposit & cashout methods – You should have several banking options to choose from for both deposits and withdrawals.
- Fast payouts – Any worthwhile casino processes cashouts quickly and with no hassles.
- Game variety – More slots and table games = more entertainment for you.
- Security – We’ll never recommend an unsafe internet casino.
You can research these aspects at gaming sites and formulate your own opinions. However, you can save a great deal of time by referencing our online casino reviews for South Africa.
Our casino reviews are conducted by experts within the online gambling field and based on real data.
Popular online casino games in South Africa
South Africans enjoy a standard mix of internet casino games played around the globe. Baccarat, blackjack, craps, roulette, slots, and video poker are among the most popular online casino games in South Africa.
Slots are especially notable—they typically fill 80-85% of the game selection at SA internet casinos.
Live dealer gaming has fueled the notoriety of blackjack and other table games in recent years. Live gaming sites stream land-based casino gambling to your mobile device or computer.
Video poker features several benefits, including in-depth strategy and a low house edge. Some video poker variations carry less than a 0.5% house edge.
South Africa doesn’t issue online casino licenses. However, most gaming sites that serve this country obtain licensing elsewhere.
You can often judge the reputability of an internet casino based on where they’re licensed. A site that holds licensing with the UK Gambling Commission and Swedish Gambling Authority, for example, is likely a quality casino.
However, an internet casino that only holds a license with Belize may not be as trustworthy. Belize maintains much lower standards than the UKGC and SGA.
Although a gaming site can be credible even if it doesn’t boast top-tier licensing, it’s more likely to be reputable if it’s gained approval for a prominent jurisdiction.
Bonus terms and conditions
Many online casinos in South Africa offer gaudy welcome bonuses to impress you. Some gaming sites feature deals worth 15,000 South African rands (ZAR) or more.
However, you want to look beyond a bonus’ size and consider the terms and conditions. T&Cs determine the difficulty of earning bonus funds.
Key terms to consider are:
- Playthrough (a.k.a. rollover, wager requierments) – Playthrough determines how much you must wager before withdrawing a bonus (e.g., 40x the bonus value).
- Maximum bet limit – You can only wager up to a specified amount with an active offer (e.g., $100 limit).
- Time to claim – You must visit your account and claim the deal within a specified timeframe (e.g., seven days).
- Time to meet playthrough – Casinos only give you so long to satisfy playthrough (e.g., 60 days).
- Game contributions – Some games with high Return-to-Player ratios may contribute less to meeting playthrough.
- Country restrictions – You should make sure that the deal doesn’t exclude South Africans.
Most online casinos in South Africa feature bonuses with fair T&Cs.
Nevertheless, some gaming sites are crooked enough to offer bonuses with abusive terms. You should learn about such casinos before depositing.
Safe & secure banking options
Top online casinos offer multiple trusted banking options. A wide variety of banking methods ensures that you can at least use one deposit and withdrawal option.
Common banking methods available at South African gaming sites include:
- Bitcoin – This popular cryptocurrency lets you make peer-to-peer transactions with internet casinos.
- Credit cards – Visa and Mastercard are accepted at most online casinos in South Africa.
- E-wallets – Neteller and Skrill are trustworthy e-wallets that let you deposit and withdraw from SA online casinos.
- Paysafecard – This prepaid card allows you to deposit at a gaming site without using your banking details.
- Wire transfer – You can use cash or your bank account to wire funds to a casino.
Approximately 11 million of South Africa’s 56.7 million residents are unbanked. If you’re among this demographic, then you’ll face trouble using most of the options covered above.
Best mobile casinos in South Africa
Mobile casinos have improved in recent years. However, some separation still exists between mobile gaming sites.
The biggest distinction involves navigation. Some casinos feature user-friendly layouts that make it easy for you to find the games and sections you’re looking for.
Other mobile casinos haven’t worked on this aspect enough. They offer cluttered homepages and do a poor job of laying out other pages.
You should also consider how many games a mobile casino offers. Many sites feature the same number of games on their mobile and desktop versions.
Other operators offer fewer games on their mobile version compared to the desktop client. In these cases, your favorite games may be missing from the smartphone/tablet client.
Online gambling laws in South Africa
The National Gambling Act of 2004 prohibits playing at or offering online bingo, casino, and poker sites. Meanwhile, licensed horse and sports gambling sites are legal in South Africa.
Politicians later introduced an amendment to the National Gambling Act in 2008. This addon seeks to legalize online casinos and poker sites.
The 2008 amendment immediately faced fierce opposition from land-based casinos and anti-money laundering pundits. Although not technically dead, this law has been in limbo ever since.
Offshore gambling sites are prohibited from offering online casinos to South Africans. Operators face up to ten years in prison and a R10 million fine for running illegal gaming sites.
South Africans are banned from playing at poker and casino sites. The country’s Department of Trade and Industry maintains the right to confiscate winnings from anybody caught illegally gambling online.
In 2017, the department did exactly this by confiscating R1.25 million from a group of Cape Town gamblers. Department Minister Rob Davies took the opportunity to reiterate that South Africans are prohibited from illegal internet gaming.
Despite this incident, many gamblers continue playing at offshore casinos. They face little chance of repercussions considering the government’s relative inaction.
Likewise, offshore casinos continue operating in the Rainbow Nation. South Africa has yet to prosecute offshore operators.
Playing online casino games with ZAR
Many online casinos in South Africa accept deposits in South African rands. You can avoid unnecessary conversions to USD or EUR. Ideally, you should also be able to bet in ZAR.
You can refer to our reviews to find out which internet casinos accept and let you wager ZAR.
South Africa online casino FAQ
Some elite gaming sites stay away from South Africa due to the stiff penalties. Nevertheless, many other top-rated online casinos still serve this market.
Based on our research, Springbok, Punt, and Yebo are among the best SA online casinos. These sites feature solid game selections and frequent bonus opportunities.
The only forms of legal internet gambling in SA are online horse and sports betting.
Poker and casino sites are illegal in South Africa. Operators face punishments of up to R10 million and ten years’ imprisonment.
Players, meanwhile, risk having their online-casino winnings confiscated. The Department of Trade and Industry took R1.25 million in winnings from gamblers in 2017.
The government rarely enforces its strict measures against illegal online gambling. However, if you’re worried about winnings being confiscated at online casinos in South Africa, you should stick with legal land-based casinos.
You break the law by playing at SA online casinos. Paying taxes on casino winnings would bring your unlawful activities to light.
South Africa only taxes professional and horse gamblers. The latter pay a 6% value-added tax (VAT) on winnings.
As long as you’re not a horse or professional sports bettor, you shouldn’t worry about paying taxes on gambling winnings.
You can find many online casinos that accept and let you gamble with ZAR. However, not all gaming sites that take ZAR deposits allow bets in rands.
You should consult our ‘reviews’ section to find out which internet casinos let you gamble with ZAR. You don’t need to make mental currency conversions while playing with rands (e.g., USD to ZAR).
The safety of SA gaming sites depends on the individual casino you’re dealing with. Luckily, many sites are completely safe, offer great customer support, and make fast payouts.
However, a few bad actors do exist. These nefarious casinos are the reason why you should be skeptical before depositing.
Our online casino reviews offer a quick path to finding the safest South African online casinos. Of course, you may still want to do your own research.
You should focus on the following aspects:
Customer service – A quality internet casino realizes the importance of good customer support.
Encryption – Gaming sites should feature top-level encryption to keep your banking details safe from hackers.
Payout speed – Financially solvent casinos have no trouble processing your withdrawals on time.
You should pass on gaming sites that fall short in any of these areas.
You can’t legally play at online casinos in South Africa. However, you can gamble on sports and horse races.
Both activities are deemed legal by federal law. Each of the nine provinces has its own gaming authority that regulates online horse and sports betting.
It’s puzzling that these two types of internet gambling are legal, while casino and poker sites aren’t. Regardless, you can at least enjoy a couple of legal options for placing online bets.
You should weigh the pros and cons of each banking method before deciding on one. You can also try different options to determine your favorite.
Your best deposit option depends on what aspects you favor most. If you’re mainly concerned with speedy deposits, then you should use a credit card.
Credit cards deliver instant funding to a casino account. However, issuing banks reject around 50% of credit card deposits due to the illegality of South Africa’s online casino market.
If you value getting a deposit through without rejection, then Bitcoin, e-wallets, and Paysafecard are great options.
Bitcoin is especially helpful as it doesn’t involve a financial middleman. Your BTC deposits will never be rejected.
You should weigh the pros and cons of each banking method before deciding on one. You can also try different options to determine your favorite.
You must be at least 18 years old to gamble online or play at land-based casinos.
Although you break the law by gambling at internet casinos, you should at least adhere to the minimum age requirement. Law enforcement is much less likely to care about your illicit online gaming if you’re of age.
After depositing, you need to visit your account and claim the bonus. The claim bonus option should be listed in your account section.
When you claim an offer, you activate it and its accompanying terms and conditions. You must be mindful of the T&Cs to avoid losing out on the bonus.
The playthrough time frame and maximum bet limit are especially important. You only have so many days or months to satisfy playthrough.
Also, you can’t exceed betting limits when a bonus is active. If you wager $200 when the limit is $150, your deal is nullified.
Make sure you read the T&Cs closely before pursuing an offer. Once you meet all T&Cs, you can either withdraw the bonus funds or continue playing with them.
You may need to download an app depending upon the online casino. However, many mobile casinos are switching to HTML5 browser-based play.
In these cases, you don’t need an app—you simply visit the casino’s website and play through your browser.
Very few internet casinos force you to download software for PC/Mac play. Most gaming sites exclusively offer browser-based play for their desktop client.
We’ve established that SA online casinos are illegal. The National Gambling Act of 2004 forbids offering internet gaming to South Africans.
Nevertheless, many offshore casinos continue serving the Rainbow Nation. The primary reason is the lack of consequences for doing so.
South Africa’s proposed punishments against illegal operators are among the harshest in the world. However, the country is yet to enforce its laws against offshore casinos.
South Africa features a lucrative online gaming market. Internet casinos are willing to float the laws to take advantage of this opportunity.
Neither the federal government nor the Department of Trade and Industry seems interested in pursuing illegal operators. The current situation of offshore casinos serving South Africans is unlikely to change in the foreseeable future.
Land-based casinos in South Africa
This country may be staunchly against online casinos, but it’s receptive to land-based gambling establishments.
South Africa is home to dozens of brick-and-mortar casinos spread throughout its nine provinces. Major cities like Cape Town, Johannesburg, and Port Elizabeth offer several casinos each.
Rio Casino Resort, which is located in Klerksdorp, North West Province, is the country’s largest gambling venue. Spanning nearly 25,000 meters, it’s also one of the world’s biggest casinos.
Other notable land-based gaming establishments in SA include GrandWest (Cape Town), Gold Reef City (Johannesburg), Sun City Resort (Rustenburg), and The Boardwalk (Port Elizabeth).
South Africa problem gambling organizations
You should consult the following resources if you or somebody you know has a gaming problem: