Serbia is a country which has undergone many changes since the turn of the millennium, and not just in name. The country has effectively had a fully legalised and regulated online gambling industry since 2011, and naturally, a large gambling population has sprung up as a result of this. Serbians have quite a few options open to them when they wish to gamble online, despite somewhat strict licensing regulations. This deserves a closer inspection so that Serbian players know what they can and cannot bet on, and what constitutes the best online casinos in Serbia. This is something we hope to achieve in our guide to online casino gambling in Serbia. Read on to find out more…
An Overview of Gambling in Serbia
Serbia’s current gambling legislation stems back to 2011. However, gambling in the country goes back further. Land-based casinos have been around since the 1960s when it was a part of what was then Yugoslavia. Back then, only tourists and foreign nationals were permitted to wager in Yugoslavia’s brick and mortar casinos. The dissolution of the former Yugoslavia opened up this option to citizens of Serbia.
The current laws date back to 2011 and are known as the Law on Games of Chance, or Zakon o Igrama na Srecu in Serbian. The regulation of the Serbian gambling industry is handled by the Games of Chance Administration, or Uprava za Igre na Srecu). This division is a part of the Tax Administration and the Ministry of Finances, known as the Poreska Uprava.
Current Serbian gambling laws state that nationals are permitted to play at any online casino which is licensed by the Serbian authorities. The licensing rules are quite strict, in that the operator must have an excellent reputation for fair play and responsible gambling practices. They must also adhere to the Serbian gambling laws to the letter, or face fines and possibly having their license rescinded. Foreign operators are welcome to apply for a Serbian gambling license, and because the tax rate on operators is minimal (5%) many international betting sites have chosen to take advantage of this.
It is still possible for Serbians to play at offshore casinos, too. The country does try to implement blocks to stop their nationals playing at these casinos. However, these blocks are easy to navigate around with a decent virtual private network (VPN), and no punishments are in place for Serbians who do play at foreign (and thus non-Serbian licensed) casinos.
Serbia’s Most Played Casino Games
Serbia has not just legalised online casino gambling. Several other types of gambling games are also legal in the country. Indeed, many of the major internet betting sites that you can choose to join not only feature casino games but these other types of games. With that in mind, it is worth checking out exactly what Serbians are entitled to play under the current gambling laws.
Online Casino Games: All forms of casino games are legal in Serbia. There are separate laws for games of chance, and games of skill, but both are legal. Serbian regulation also provides quite a great deal of player protection, so any slots, table games and instant win titles must be certified as fair before they can be offered to Serbians.
Poker Games: Poker is not as popular in Serbia as it is in other countries. However, poker games and games of skill are legal all the same. You won’t find bona fide poker rooms in the country, but poker games do spring up at all Serbian licensed online casinos, some of which go one step further than having RNG (random number generator) titles, and extend their collection to include live dealer and tournament-based games, too.
Live Dealer Casino Games: Live casino games are available to Serbians, although they aren’t overly popular. In most cases, the collection is kept to a minimum, consisting of little more than baccarat, blackjack, roulette and a handful of live table poker games. Live dealer games are seldom available in Serbian, with players opting for Russian and English language live casino titles.
Lottery and Bingo Games: Lottery games fall under the laws for gambling. The National Lottery of Serbia (Drzavna Lutrija Srbije) can be played online, although it is a monopoly. No law prohibits Serbians from playing at international lottery sites, though, if they wish. Bingo games are unregulated in Serbia. However, the National Lottery of Serbia does have the authority to offer these games if they want to.
Sports Betting: Sports betting is legal in Serbia. However, the popularity of placing bets on sports has caused a bit of a stir, so the government has decided not to license any specific sportsbooks in the country. Nonetheless, Serbians can still play at offshore bookmakers, and this is something that many of them choose to do.
Taxes on Big Wins at Serbian Casinos
At this moment in time, the gambling taxes in Serbia are amongst the lowest around for operators. A tax rate of 5% has seen many operators eager to open up services in the country. That could be about to change, though. Serbia recently passed laws which would see the tax rate rise to 15% for online gambling games, and 10% for brick and mortar ones. Even with these increased tax rates, Serbia would still have amongst the lowest tax rate for operators in Europe.
Serbia does not currently tax its players on winnings. Anything you win from gambling games – whether licensed out of Serbia or not – is yours to keep with no strings attached.
The Best Serbian Online Casinos to Join Today
Serbia has a handful of licensed online casinos, but there are also many offshore sites which accept players from the country. Ultimately, it is up to you to decide whether you wish to head down the straight and narrow and play at Serbian licensed casinos, or if you prefer at foreign sites. Remember, there is no punishment if you choose to do the latter, and you won’t pay taxes on winnings in either.
Wherever you decide to play, here are a few things that you should look for to find the best Serbian online casinos to join today.
Player Protections: Serbian gambling regulations provide an excellent array of player protections. Any offshore casino site that you choose to join should provide an equal array of player protections. Generally speaking, licensed offshore casinos which promote responsible gaming should fit the bill.
Serbian-Friendly: Serbian licensed casinos will naturally offer gameplay in Serbian, with payment methods and support naturally revolving around Serbians’ needs. The same is not true of all offshore casinos. If opting for the latter, try and select a casino which offers Serbian language support, the Serbian dinar currency option, and payment methods which are easy to use for Serbians.
Game Collections: As mentioned, virtually all forms of gambling games are legal in Serbia. However, this does not mean that Serbian licensed sites can offer you the works. If you want to play casino games, slap down a few sports bets and have a punt on the lottery, then ensure that you sign up to a casino which offers all of the above. There are many international sites which do just that.
Fair Terms and Conditions: As mentioned, all Serbian sites are checked frequently to ensure that they are adhering to Serbia’s fair play rules. If you decide to play at a foreign casino, make certain that you are guaranteed the same. Any bonuses and promotions should have fair wagering requirements as well as other terms and conditions. Cashout options should not have high minimum withdrawal limits, and low maximum withdrawal ones, nor should you be charged hefty fees for cashing out your winnings.
Serbian players have the best of both worlds. On the one hand, they can opt to play in nationally licensed casinos. On the other, they can choose to play at international sites without fear of prosecution. Serbia is one of the friendliest countries to the online gambling industry, and any Serbian player can consider themselves fortunate to have the pick of the litter when it comes to internet betting sites. If you want to find the best online casinos for Serbian players, you can find many top Serbian licensed and Serbian-friendly casinos right here.