The Republic of Estonia is a relatively small country in Northern Europe situated between the Gulf of Finland and the Baltic Sea.
It is one of the least populated members of the European Union with just 1.3 million residents. Before Estonia gained independence from the USSR in 1991, gambling was illegal here.
In 1994, the government took a regulatory approach to gambling by enacting the Lottery Act and then in 1995 it enacted the Gambling Act.
These acts were combined and updated in Estonia’s 2009 Gambling Act which also included online regulations for online betting.
The new act also sought to curb underage gambling, improve oversight of the industry, and stimulate government revenues.
After the updated act of 2009 was put into effect, only Estonian online gaming companies were permitted to operate in the country.
Possibly as a result of sagging revenues due to the economic crisis, the market was opened up to foreign operators in 2011.
Foreign online betting services must obtain an Estonian gaming license to operate here.
Top 10 Gambling Sites for Estonia
What are the Best Estonian Gambling Sites and Promotions?
Estonia is far from being a large wagering market but that doesn’t stop online gaming companies from wanting a piece of it. Along with some Estonian online casinos, many of the biggest and most trusted brands in online gaming have a presence here and many of them have some very nice bonuses for Estonian online casino fanatics.
If you are a novice or small-time player, Totesport is a good place to start and Estonian internet casino-goers can claim quick €10 bonuses. 5 Dimes will give new customers $50 in casino bonuses while Casino King, Whitebet, and Casino Floor have €100 up for grabs. Skybook has very generous $1,500 bonuses waiting to be claimed.
If you want to play online poker then are lots of great sites that offer bonuses. You can get a $400 poker bonus at 888, €500 at Bwin and Party, and up to €1,000 at Betsson. Take a look at RedKings and Redbet where they are padding your bonus account with up to €2,500.
There are many more bonuses available for Estonian players and they can be found at Gambling Judge. Don’t forget to read the in-depth casino and poker reviews while you’re at it.
How Regulated is the Estonian Gambling Market?
Since the Gambling Act was updated and implemented in 2011, the Estonian betting industry is one of the most tightly regulated in the world. The Estonian Tax and Customs board is the body that is tasked with the distribution of gambling licenses and overseeing lotteries.
There has been a focus on minimizing the damage that gambling creates as well as consumer protection. Both land-based and internet operations face strict licensing requirements and ongoing audits and inspections to ensure compliance with Estonian gambling laws. Illegal online operators are blacklisted and their websites blocked.
Is Gambling Legal in Estonia? What is the Legal Gambling Age?
Estonian gambling laws allow for almost all forms of gambling. Online and land-based casinos, poker rooms, bingo halls, and sports betting are all legal provided the operator has an Estonian gambling license. Lotteries are also legal and are a state-run monopoly. Players must be at least 21 to enter a casino and place a bet.
Does Estonia Tax Gambling Winnings?
Estonia taxes lottery winnings at a rate 18%. The amount is deducted at the source. Winnings from sports betting, casinos, and other land-based and online operations are not taxed. Operators must pay taxes on net profits and monthly fees on every gaming machine.
What Currencies and Payment Methods do Estonian Players Generally Use?
As a member of the European Union, the official currency in Estonia is the Euro. It is accepted at all brick and mortar betting establishments and is also a very common currency option for online players. Estonian players have several options for making deposits and withdrawals.
As in most other places, major credit cards are the most popular methods and are debit and prepaid cards. EWallets like Skrill and Neteller are widely accepted as is Krediitipank. Estonians that are looking for a payment method should be sure to check the website to ensure that their preferred method is accepted.