Betting regulations in Kenya have legalized betting and casino gambling a long while ago. Gambling business in Kenya is legal for more than half a century.
In fact, it is one of the first African countries that legalized online gambling too: Online betting in Kenya is also legal for a long time.
The eastern African nation of Kenya lies on the equator and is home to 45 million residents.
It has the most advanced economy of any eastern or central African country. Still, nearly 20% of all Kenyans live on less than $1.25 per day.
However, even with that kind of income, sports betting in Kenya is still very popular.
What’s more is that it is estimated that the average Kenyan pays 16 bribes per month which adds up to about a third of their income: We can call this the “unofficial tax on betting in Kenya”.
The service industry (including gambling business in Kenya) is driven by tourism and accounts for over 60% of the GDP. Agriculture and manufacturing are also critical industries here.
The history of gambling in Kenya is quite long: Kenyan gambling laws were established in 1966 with the introduction of the Betting Lotteries and Gaming Act.
The Gaming Bill 2020 Kenya is about to make some changes for sports betting in Kenya, which we will mention below.
These Kenyan gambling laws established the Betting Control and Licensing Board which issues gambling licenses and enforces regulations in all sectors of gambling. These agencies also audit international gambling companies in Kenya.
In this regard, betting laws in Kenya are one of the oldest ones in Africa, and gambling in Kenya is legal since a long time.
However, if you are looking for betting sites in Kenya without tax, you may be disappointed: According to Betting Act Kenya, such a thing is not possible.
In fact, more taxes are about to enacted: There is a new chapter in the history of gambling in Kenya and we will talk about this in detail below.
The good news is betting sites not banned in Kenya: They are still legal according to the new Betting Act. This brings out another question: Which betting sites are legal in Kenya? More importantly, which ones have the best odds and bonuses?
We can answer all these questions for you because we already picked the best online bookmakers for Kenya. Take a look at the list below and pick any of these websites to start playing: If you are wondering how to bet legally in Kenya, this is the way to do it.
Top 10 Gambling Sites for Kenya -  Updated List
Is Gambling Legal In Kenya? What Is The Legal Gambling Age?
The answer is yes, gambling in Kenya is legal for nearly 60 years. Gambling in Kenya has been legal since 1966 and it has really taken off in recent years. Revenues from getting a betting license in Kenya are climbing with the many land-based establishments booming.
Gambling tax in Kenya is quite high and it is about to get higher, so these are not surprising at all. Of note, the sports betting sector has seen incredible growth. The minimum gambling age is 18.
Kenya is now home to 28 casinos, 11 bingo halls, 3 sportsbooks, and 1 horse racing track. These are all licensed and regulated land-based operations. Lotteries, bingo, poker, and sports betting are all state-run monopolies and are quite popular. In other words, Kenya gambling is almost limited to land-based operations.
As for online gambling in Kenya, it was a state monopoly too but the company that ran it, Betkenya.com, closed up shop leaving no legal options for online play. At the moment, there is no local online casino Kenya in the country. While betting regulations Kenya allow online casino gambling, there is simply no operator that will offer slot machines in Kenya, for example.
Of course, with so many foreign online gambling sites out there, Kenyan online casino players actually do have options. There are numerous online gaming sites that take bets from Kenyan players. The government does not block these sites and has recently begun to issue licenses to online sportsbooks.
In other words, you are not limited to a gambling business in Kenya: The internet is filled with online betting Kenya sites and we can find the best ones for you. Moreover, we can offer you localized options, such as Kenyan shillings online casinos and let you play with your own currency.
Is Betting Legal In Kenya?
The answer to this question is also yes. Betting laws in Kenya state that all kinds of gambling are legal, so legal Kenya gambling is not limited to casino games. According to the “Betting Control And Licensing Act Kenya”, any company can start to offer online gambling services as long as they get a license according to the Betting Lotteries And Gaming Act.
However, note that betting rules in Kenya is about to change and, at the start of 2020, we might see a new betting law in Kenya. We will explain this issue in detail below.
What are the Best Gambling Sites and Promotions for Kenya?
There doesn’t appear to be any stories of the Kenyan authorities going after online players and the government does not bother to block many gambling sites so it might be safe to say that Kenyan online casino players and the foreign internet sites can go about their business without the threat of interference.
Betting laws in Kenya are quite liberal and as long as you know what you are doing, betting regulations in Kenya won’t stop you from accessing foreign websites.
Kenyans have a lot of choices of top-rated online gambling sites that offer them valuable bonuses. Players who join Goodwin Casino can be credited with a quick €99 in casino bonuses and if you sign up at William Hill or 22 Bet, you can win several cash bonuses (and bet in Kenya free spins) varying between €200 and €300.
It gets really exciting at 1xBit and Cloud Bet, as they offer their bonus packages in Bitcoin: You can win up to 5 BTC in these sites. If you want to go after some really large game on your next casino safari then set your sights on the €500 bonus of 18 Bet, because it doesn’t get much bigger than this.
How Regulated is the Kenyan Gambling Market?
On paper, gambling in Kenya is a tightly regulated state monopoly. Going back to the amount of bribes that are taken on a daily basis, it is hard to tell what the real story is. While the monopoly may have sprung a leak with the failure of their online operation and proliferation of “illegal” internet casino betting, their casinos, lotteries, bingo halls, and sportsbooks are all well-liked and doing well.
Which Betting Sites Are Legal In Kenya?
At the moment, only a couple of local operators offer their services and there is no real bet in Kenya online app. The government is trying to create a new Betting Act Kenya in 2020, and it will bring new betting rules in Kenya. We can summarize the proposed changes as follows:
- Gambling license cost in Kenya will raise to KES100m (Around 900.000 EUR),
- Gambling is still legal, “betting banned in Kenya” news does not reflect the truth,
- Tax on jackpot winnings in Kenya is still 20%.
Lastly, new betting rules in Kenya will increase the minimum bet amount to KES50, instead of KES20, to reduce the impact of gambling on the youth. The new regulation and gambling laws in Kenya may result in an increase with the number of Kenyan shillings online casinos, we will wait and see. The new betting law in Kenya is scheduled to come into force by the end of 2019.
(Update) Latest Gambling News In Kenya
As of February 2020, the new Gambling Act was still not in effect. It is expected to come into force by June 2020. You can see a copy of it by clicking here. There are two important changes:
- Gambling license cost in Kenya is one hundred million shillings for online gambling and fifty million shillings for land-based casinos.
- Betting tax in Kenya is not changed. However, there will be a new 35% tax on gaming advertisements (so don’t expect to see betting sites with no tax in Kenya anytime soon).
Is Gambling Legal in Kenya? What is the Legal Gambling Age?
Gambling in Kenya has been legal since 1966 and it has really taken off in recent years. Revenues are climbing with the many land-based establishments booming. Of note, the sports betting sector has seen incredible growth. The minimum gambling age is 18.
Does Kenya Tax Gambling winnings? How are they Declared?
A 20% tax on winnings was supposed to have been implemented three years ago by the Kenyan government but it doesn’t appear to be in place yet. There has been “no meaningful revenues” collected to date and Kenyan casino-goers report that no portions of their winnings have been withheld.
The tax, which was supposed to be withheld at the source, was a topic of much controversy. According to betting regulations Kenya, a 20% tax on lottery winnings must be paid to the government. Kenyan gambling operations are a strong source of revenues through taxes and licensing fees.
What Currencies and Payment Methods do Kenyan Players Generally Use?
The official currency of Kenya is the shilling and it is accepted everywhere in the country. Kenyans who want to play for real money at online gaming sites have a few good payment options. Major credit cards like Visa, Mastercard, and Maestro are commonly accepted as are eWallets like Skrill and Neteller.
Pre-paid cards are widely accepted and bank wire transfers can even be used to deposit and withdraw funds. Check with your online gaming site to see what options are available to you.