Gambling is a thriving industry in Finland, but is it legal to play online casino games? We take a look at Finland’s online gambling laws and explain where Finnish players can safely play real money casino games using Euros at the best venues on the Web.
Online casino websites accepting Finnish players
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Finland’s gambling laws
The legal landscape surrounding gambling in Finland has been relatively unchanged since World War II, which was around the time that the first slot machines were introduced to the country. Gambling is a legal and regulated industry, with three government run companies holding a monopoly over all gambling related services. Fintoto is the company responsible for bets on horse racing, Veikkaus is the company controlling lottery, keno and bingo, and RAY (short for Raha-automaattiyhdisty) is the company responsible for casino gambling, including slots and table games. A fourth organisation, PAF (Play Among Friends), holds a monopoly on gambling in Finland’s Aland Province, which is a series of 6,500 islands scattered across the Baltic Sea.
The Finnish government is often criticised by the rest of the European Union for holding a monopoly on gambling, but those criticisms are deflected by the fact that lots of the country’s gambling profits are pumped back into charities, help for problem gamblers and care for animals involved in the gambling industry. There is increased pressure for the government to open the Finnish gambling market, but the chances of that happening any time soon are highly unlikely.
Is online gambling legal in Finland?
Gambling at online casinos in Finland is legal, provided it is one of the casinos owned and operated by RAY or PAF. Many players have ignored these restrictions and taken their money to offshore casino sites, as there is no legal framework in place in Finland to prevent them from doing so. The government has attempted to curb offshore gambling by banning offshore casino sites from advertising to Finnish players, but operators are using social media and paid bloggers to get around these restrictions.
To put it simply, while online gambling is technically illegal in Finland unless it is at a RAY or PAF licensed casino site, there is nothing in Finnish laws to prosecute players from accessing international casino sites. It is estimated Finnish players pump around €130m in gambling funds to offshore sites annually, and there is no record of a player ever being punished for playing offshore. If you do choose to play at a regulated offshore casino like the ones recommended on our site, you may want to consider using a VPN (virtual private network) for an extra layer of security when paying for real money.
Best casino sites for Finnish players
Although offshore casinos are banned from advertising their services in Finland, that does very little to stop players from accessing international casino sites. There is absolutely nothing in Finnish law to punish a person from gambling at an offshore casino site, so Finnish players can continue to play for real money at offshore venues without any legal risks. Given these relaxed laws, many of the world’s leading online casinos continue to service the Finnish market, accepting real money deposits in Euros.
For a list of the best online casino sites catering to players from Finland, refer to our casino table at the top of this page. This table has been geo-targeted to recognise the country you are playing from and only recommend online casinos that accept players from your country. All of our endorsed casinos undergo a thorough testing process before getting our tick of approval, ensuring they offer a large selection of high quality casino games from the best software providers, are licensed by the leading gambling jurisdictions and provide a safe and regulated gaming space for online players.
How to deposit real money using EUR
The Euro (€) is widely accepted at online casinos, so Finnish players will have no issues depositing and withdrawing cash in their local currency. The payment methods available vary between each casino provider, with the most commonly accepted deposit options being Visa, MasterCard, Neteller, Skrill, Paysafecard, ecoPayz, Entropay, Trustly, Citadel Direct and direct bank transfers. Most deposits (excluding some bank transfers) are processed instantly, so you can start playing online casino games for real money within minutes of signing up for an account and making a cash deposit. For a full list of the payment methods accepted at your chosen online casino along with the payment processing times, check the banking FAQ section or speak to a customer service rep using live chat.
Our recommended casinos are all protected by a minimum of 128-Bit SSL (secure socket layer) digital encryption, the same level of digital security used by leading Internet banks. If you would prefer an extra layer of security for full peace of mind when gambling online, consider using a trusted VPN (virtual private network) service.