Online casinos in Hong Kong
Hong Kong has permitted gambling (in some form) ever since the British took over. However, with the handover back to China in 1997, there was great doubt as to whether gambling would continue in Hong Kong, or whether it would align itself with China in terms of its gambling laws. Although far more lenient with its gambling legislation than mainland China, there is still a great cloud surrounding what you and cannot do when you want to gamble in Hong Kong. Hopefully, by the time you have finished reading this, you will have a great idea of what the current situation in Hong Kong is.
Gambling laws in Hong Kong
Make no mistake about it, gambling is immensely popular in Hong Kong. A good deal of the population loves to gamble, and in actuality, gambling has been regulated in the country since the late 1970s. You might think that this might make gambling legal. It isn’t as simple as that, though, with most forms of gambling not actually legal.
If you want to bet on horse racing, that is fine and dandy. However, if you wish to bet on casino games, you’d better get ready to set sail. Casino games are only legal to bet on if you happen to onboard one of the many cruise ships which frequent the area. With over 81% of adults in Hong Kong having admitted to gambling on a frequent basis, then, how are they getting away with it? What are they betting on?
Aside from Mah-jong and other underground gambling halls, many citizens of Hong Kong choose to bet online. Officially, gambling online is illegal in Hong Kong, although unlike China, the authorities do not crack down on it. As such, there is relatively little to stop you from gambling online in Hong Kong.
Offshore casinos in Hong Kong
So, you can forget about playing casino games online in a licensed Hong Kong online casino. What option have you but to seek out gambling websites from outside the region then? Fortunately, this is made really simple for players. The Hong Kong authorities (although openly declaring gambling online illegal, and banning bank transfers to gambling sites) do not block your access to such sites, nor do they persecute or prosecute any players who do decide to frequent offshore casino sites (that means to say casinos which are not based in Hong Kong) to play online gambling games.
Because of these relatively lax gambling laws, many offshore casino sites (in fact, most of them) are more than willing to offer their services to players in Hong Kong. These offshore casinos go out of their way to ensure that players from Hong Kong feel welcome and can offer support and gameplay in both English and Chinese, whilst also offering players the opportunity to play using HKD (Hong Kong dollars).
About gambling in Hong Kong
Players who are interested in gambling in Hong Kong are always advised to do so legally, of course. However, Hong Kong doesn’t give you a whole lot of options in that regard when it comes online gambling. If you do decide to play online, you will almost certainly have to play at an offshore casino site. Our advice would be to select an offshore casino which not only offers gameplay and currencies which suit your needs but also that has a respectable reputation in the online casino industry; after all, there are a lot of rogue casinos out there which would happily take advantage of you.
You do not need to bother with a VPN (virtual private network) when playing online in Hong Kong. The government does not prosecute citizens who gamble online, even if it is against the law. Nor do they demand that their ISPs (internet service providers) block access to such offshore casino sites.
However, players who want to gamble online in Hong Kong won’t have everything their own way. The government may not prosecute players or ban access to offshore casinos, but they do prohibit Hong Kong banks from processing any transactions which go directly to gambling websites. As always, though, there is a way around this. Transferring your money to an e-wallet (specifically an offshore one) will be enough to enable you to gamble at an online casino. You can even withdraw your winnings from the casino to your e-wallet, and then forward that back on to your bank. Whilst Hong Kong banks don’t permit deposits at casino sites, they have no qualms about accepting money from gambling sources.