For a Muslim country that takes a hard line on so many topics, the stance on gambling in Turkey has been like a rollercoaster for decades. One thing that has remained constant during all the changes in legislation is that Turkish residents love to gamble, and gambling online has been a part of that love affair since the early days of the industry.
Gambling in Turkey, especially betting online, has faced significant resistance at the government level, although it is still possible for players to access many of the online gambling sites that are hosted offshore. Players love to bet on everything from horse racing to sports to the lottery, but without question, they love to bet a significant amount of money on slot machines. At one point, there were dozens of land-based casinos for Turkish players to sit and spin the reels of their favorite machines, but changes in regulation and in government forced those facilities to be shut down. The majority of gambling that happens in Turkey is of the illegal nature, which comes with a set of repercussions.
Gambling Regulations in Turkey
The gambling industry has had its ups and downs in Turkey, and despite the conservative nature of the government, some betting options still exist. While gambling was legislated as far back as the 1980s, different regime changes and new laws introduced essentially made online and land-based gambling illegal by 2007. Strangely, despite the conservative culture, there is one exception to the ban on online gambling. The state-run online company IDDAA is allowed to offer sports betting to residents of Turkey. Today, gamblers are also allowed to buy lottery tickets and place bets on horse races at tracks that are also government-owned and operated.
While there has been a ban placed on online gambling that isn’t state-sponsored, the bottom line is that gamblers were still able to access sites willing to take their action. With the operators turning a blind eye towards the government, this was considered to be a huge insult, and the response was strong. Recently, the government has made amendments to the gambling laws also to make it illegal for players to make real-money bets at offshore sites, implementing fines for anyone who is caught breaking the law. Also, the government is working with banks to ensure that it is as difficult as possible for Turkish players to make the financial transactions necessary to fund their accounts.
These days, even with these new regulations in place, it is estimated that over 10 billion USD is spent gambling at offshore sites. With new third-party payment options that do not require a player using a Turkish bank, it is still relatively easy for players to get their money to and from a site. So, while the government would like to have total control over this business, it doesn’t appear as though many offshore-based casinos sites are willing to cooperate.
Online Casino Software Available in Turkey
Even though there are calls to fine and ban sites who are accepting Turkish players, there are still many high-quality sites that will allow players to play their favorite slots games. In fact, without any real threat to the software companies, it is totally up to these firms whether or not to shut out the country from their products. These days, Turkish players can choose from casinos that use some of these software giants:
- Rival Gaming
- Real Time Gaming
As you can see, there is no shortage of excellent software providers who have hundreds of amazing slot machines and Table Games available to players from Turkey. Until there is a major charge laid against one of these firms, we don’t think anyone will pull out of the country.
Best Online Casinos for Turkish Players
When it comes to finding a great casino site open to players from Turkey, sites like this one become an excellent resource. The fact of the matter is that many sites offer the same games, so it becomes far more important to find sites that are reputable and aren’t going to walk away with your funds. When we perform our casino reviews, we take into consideration many factors, including where a casino is licensed, what types of software are available and the payment options for players to get their money to and from the site with as little pain as possible. When we put it all together, we are able to come up with a recommended list of online sites for Turkish players, which you will find below. Any of these sites we would consider to be trustworthy enough for you to open an account and make a deposit.
Despite a public announcement of a two-year crackdown on online gaming operators and the Turkish players who frequent these sites, there hasn’t been much change in the industry. Software companies and operators continue to accept players willing to make a deposit, and with new payment options appearing on a regular basis, the business shows no signs of slowing down. If a Turkish player wants to play their favorite slot machine online, they should only be worried about the integrity of the site that they choose and of course, use extreme caution or face being fined for the activity.