Ontario Online Casinos

Ontario is moving to allow legal online casinos to launch. The province’s own OLG.ca casino is stepping up its game and is ready to battle it out in Ontario’s new competitive online gambling market.

Casino players will have more than just a few choices here in Ontario, and this page aims to help guide you through them. Find a list of the top online casinos in the province with all the latest information about the bonuses on offer and the games you can play, along with info on other gambling options.

Live updates and launch dates for Ontario online casinos

  • Jan. 17, 2022: A report commissioned by Great Canadian Gaming Corporation and leaked to the media claims Ontario’s anticipated online gambling market will be bad for jobs and Ontario’s provincial coffers. The report faced backlash from an industry anxiously awaiting news of a launch date.
  • Jan. 14, 2022: PointsBet Canada announced an exclusive multi-year partnership with the Trailer Park Boys ahead of PBC’s official brand launch. Earlier the same week, they announced a similar deal with the NHLAA.
  • Jan. 11, 2022: Canada’s NorthStar Gaming announced a partnership with the world’s leading software provider, Playtech. Playtech plans to power NorthStar’s upcoming iGaming launch.
  • Jan. 4, 2022: The COVID-19 Omicron variant has forced the province of Ontario to close casinos. The province has set a tentative reopening date of Jan. 26, 2020Online Poker Report is now reporting the province’s new privately run and provincially licensed online casinos will likely miss out on a huge boom in online gambling due to the casino closures. The online casinos were looking to launch in December 2021, but issues with the Canadian criminal code and exactly who will “conduct and manage” operations have forced delays. Ontario now says the first privately run online casino won’t go live until February 2022 and will miss out on the boost on online gambling business as a result of the closures.
  • Jan. 1, 2022: Ontario’s new competitive online gambling market did not launch in December 2021 as planned. Sources told the Toronto Star the market will not launch until February 2022 at the earliest. Issues stemming from the Office of the Auditor General of Ontario’s report and outstanding game condition, data management, and security policies are apparently causing the delay.
  • Dec. 6, 2021: GAN will enter the Ontario gambling market through a Tier-1 operator partnership.
  • Dec. 6, 2021: OLG.ca adds the OLG lottery Pick games to its online casino. That means players can now buy tickets for the popular Pick 2, Pick 3 and Pick 4 lottery games online.
  • Dec. 3, 2021: The Office of the Auditor General released a report outlining potential problems with Ontario’s iGaming framework.
  • Nov. 30, 2021: Intema submits an application to provide online casino and sports betting in Ontario.

Are online casinos legal in Ontario?

The Ontario Lottery and Gaming Corp.’s online casino is legal in the province, of course. Additionally, Ontario is working to establish a competitive online casino market. That market will allow commercial online casinos to register and enter into an agreement with iGaming Ontario to start offering their products and services sometime in early 2022 if not later.

Ultimately, this will mean more safe and legal online casino options for players in Ontario, giving them more choice and variety alongside the OLG site.

Best real money casinos in ON

The online casino sites in Ontario’s new market will feature the latest innovations in gambling software, new games, plus all the classics, and integrated sports betting options. Here is our list of what is likely to be some of the best real money online casinos in Ontario:

BetMGM Sportsbook

BetMGM Casino

Built by one of the world’s biggest casino companies and its software partners, BetMGM Casino offers a large number of exclusive slots, making it a popular spot for slot enthusiasts.

  • Best game: Exclusive slots
  • Bonus offer: $25 join bonus and a 100% deposit match up to $1,000
  • App rating: 4.7 out of 5; 28.1K ratings on the Apple App Store

Golden Nugget

Golden Nugget online casino is a market leader with an extensive collection of games. It’s also the originator of live dealer games and remains the best destination for these online and live hybrid games. The casino will most likely offer more than 200 casino games on launch and could bring as many as 800+ slots, once established.

  • Best game: Live dealer games
  • Bonus offer: $10 in bonus cash, 200 free spins and a 100% deposit match bonus up to $1,500
  • App rating: 3.6 out of 5; 382 ratings on the Apple App Store

DraftKings Sportsbook

DraftKings Casino

DraftKings Casino is a popular spot for table game players, offering a variety that can include more than 20 versions of blackjack. The casino has close to a dozen DraftKings branded online casino games, including games specific to sporting events.

  • Best game: Blackjack
  • Bonus offer: $60 free at sign-up; 100% deposit match up to $2,000 and an additional $25 on your first deposit
  • App rating: 4.7 out of 5; 17.2K ratings on the Apple App Store

FanDuel Sportsbook

FanDuel Casino

FanDuel Casino features live dealer games, slots, video poker, and roulette. FanDuel features solid integration between its online casino and sportsbook, allowing you to month seamlessly between the blackjack tables and betting app.

  • Best feature: Sportsbook and casino
  • Bonus offer: Risk-free first day up to $1,000
  • App rating: 4.8 out of 5; 320.8K ratings on the Apple App Store

Stars Casino

Stars Casino is the online casino arm of PokerStars. The casino provides Ontario players with weekly slot races with a $10,000 prize pool. Quarterly events are held monthly, with a prize pool worth $1,000,000. If you’re looking for instant cash bonuses, this is the casino to try.

  • Best games: Slot races
  • Bonus offer: Bet $1, get $50 in bonus funds
  • App rating: 4.4 out of 5; 130 ratings on the Apple App Store

Caesars Casino

From another of the largest casino companies in the world, Caesars Casino offers a quality selection of casino games and online integration with Caesars Rewards, a loyalty program with a variety of perks available. The casino features slots from IGT, Bally, Konami and Scientific Games.

  • Best feature: Loyalty program
  • Bonus offer: 100% deposit bonus up to $2,000
  • App rating: 2.0 out of 5; 195 ratings on the Apple App Store

Comparing the best online casino bonuses

Here are the new player welcome bonuses at some of Ontario’s top online casinos:

Online CasinoBonus OfferPromo CodeWagering Requirement
BetMGM Casino$25 join bonus and a 100% deposit match bonus up to $1,000TBD15x bonus amount
DraftKings Caisno$60 free at sign-up; 100% deposit match up to $2,000 and an additional $25 on depositNone - Use Links15x for deposit match
FanDuelRisk-free first day up to $1,000None - Use LinksInherent 1X playthrough requirement
Golden Nugget$10 in bonus cash, 200 free spins and a 100% deposit match bonus up to $1,500PLAYBONUS10x playthrough requirement on deposit match
StarsBet $1, get $50 in bonus fundsNone - Use Links$1 released per two redemption points earned at different rates
Caesars100% deposit bonus up to $2,000FREECZR5x on slots, 10x on video poker, 25x on all other games

How to clear a bonus

As you can see from the table above, you can’t just take the bonus money that online casinos offer you and withdraw it. There are wagering requirements to consider. In other words, you have to gamble with the bonus money first. How many times you have to gamble is up to the individual bonus, but it ranges from once to up to 25 times. Of course, that pales in comparison to certain offshore casinos, which may have up to 50-time wagering requirements that are near impossible to clear.

So, how do you meet the wagering requirements and clear the bonuses that legal and licensed Ontario online casinos offer you? Start with understanding what those playthrough requirements are for the bonus you’re after. If you’re lucky, it’ll be just one time. That means all you have to do is play your favourite games, running through the amount of the bonus one time. After that, anything you win is yours to keep.

If the wagering requirement is more than once, the online casino may keep your bonus in a separate account from the money you deposited. In that case, bet with your deposited funds the required number of times to release the bonus. Often, the online casino will release the bonus in increments, so even if you can’t get it all, you’ll get some. Of course, some wagering requirements may be different for different games. Just read the fine print to make sure you understand exactly what you need to do.

What are the most popular games at Ontario casinos?

Slots form the majority of games at any casino, online and live. But while the online casinos in Ontario have an abundance of real money slot games, they also have a selection of online table games that are exact replicas of, or at the very least based on, traditional casino classics. Here are some popular categories:

  • Blackjack: The top card game at every casino, with dozens of online blackjack versions available, from live dealer to single-deck blackjack.
  • Casino poker: Poker as a casino table game — you play against the dealer online and have the chance to win big bonuses with the right hand.
  • Baccarat: Popular low-volatility card game that plays the same online as it does live.
  • Craps: A great learning tool online, but lacks the excitement and social nature of the live dice game.
  • Slots: Plenty of games you might recognize from your favourite local casino, and more that are exclusively available online.
  • Roulette: Popular luck-based game. There are a variety of roulette games available online, from live dealer to double-ball.
  • Video poker: Still popular after all these years, this low volatility card game translates perfectly online.
  • Live casino games: Online and live casino hybrid versions of the most popular casino table games.
  • Scratch-offs: If traditional scratch-offs and online slots had a baby, it would look like these lottery-style games do online.

Downloading a casino app

If you have a sportsbook account with one of the bigger online gambling brands that just landed in Ontario, you should be able to cross over easily and start playing the casino games. If you’re new to online casino gambling in Ontario entirely, you’ll need to create an account to get started playing. Fortunately, most make this easy, requiring a minimal amount of personal and account information.

After you’ve signed up, you can play most games right on an online casino’s website, or you can download its app and play them there. There’s usually more of a selection on the website, but the app may be more stable. Where to play is really more of a personal choice and one you should base on what games are available versus what you actually play.

Downloading and installing the app is simple, and you’re never really more than a click or two away from playing your favourite games:

  • Go to the website for the online casino.
  • Find the Android or iOS download link, depending on your device, and click on it.
  • Open the app after the installation is complete.
  • Sign up for an account on the website or click something that says “sign up” or “register” on the app and do it there.
  • Deposit funds using any of the banking methods available.
  • Browse through the games and click on something to start playing it.

Legal vs. offshore casinos

There are some significant differences between provincially run and provincially licensed online casinos and offshore online casinos. The biggest one is that legal online casinos must abide by provincial regulations. That means everything from the games to the banking functions must be fair and safe. You can be sure the games have undergone testing and that mainstream banking options — including credit cards, PayPal, Interac, and online bank transfers — are available.

Offshore casinos might promise the same, but they are under no provincial or federal obligation to deliver. If something goes wrong with your money or your personal information, you likely have no legal recourse. Banking can be difficult, as well.

Benefits of Ontario online casinos

Ontario runs its own online casino and is stepping in to regulate the additional online casinos that want to operate in the province. There are several benefits to online gambling with this kind of government oversight:

  1. Safety: iGaming Ontario is there to help if you have a dispute or something else goes wrong. Strict licensing requirements ensure that approved online casinos in Ontario are legitimate and take measures to protect your privacy and your money.
  2. Mainstream banking methods: Banking options include major credit cards, PayPal, Interac and online banking, not mysterious wire transfers from the Caribbean that your bank may not want to deal with.
  3. Responsible gambling: Licensed online casinos have measures in place to protect minors and problem gamblers. They do this by instituting options like deposit limits, timeouts and self-exclusion programs. Offshore casinos may pay little more than lip service to these ideas because there’s no legitimate government body forcing them to.
  4. Bonuses and promotions: The new Ontario online casino market will do everything they can to get your business. You can benefit from the various promotions and bonus offers they use to do that.

Legal gambling in Ontario

  • Casinos: You have a choice of government-owned casinos and tribal casinos. The facilities range from luxury resorts in Toronto and Niagara Falls to smaller operations around the province.
  • Sports betting: Previously, your only option was wagering on two or more events via the provincial lottery, in line with national laws. Now, you can place more traditional single-event wagers with PROLINE+, OLG’s online sportsbook. Plus, more online sportsbooks will launch in the province by late 2021 or early 2022.
  • Horse racing: Ontario has a lot of racetracks. You will find thoroughbred, standardbred, and harness racing in the warmer months. OTB offices allow you to bet on national and international races. Horse racing bets are pooled, using the pari-mutuel system.
  • Lottery: There are draws every night of the week, many with multimillion-dollar prize pools. They include Lotto Max, which has a jackpot that can reach $70 million. You can also play keno and instant games on the Ontario Lottery.
  • Poker: You will find poker rooms at many of the larger casinos around Ontario. Cash games and tournaments featuring Texas Hold’em, Pot Limit Omaha, and other poker variants run 24/7.
  • Online casino gambling: PlayOLG is the Ontario gambling portal. It offers casino games, slots, video poker, and sports betting options. Compared to many offshore sites, the selection of games and promotions is limited. Licensed online sportsbooks and casinos will start going live in late 2021 or early 2022
  • Bingo/charitable gambling: Depending on the size of the prizes, charitable gambling falls under the oversight of the provincial government or the relevant municipality. There are bingo halls in many towns and cities in the province.

Ontario Gambling FAQ

Are online casinos legal in Ontario?

Yes. OLG’s online gambling website gives Ontario residents an explicitly legal way to gamble online. Plus, the first provincially licensed online sportsbooks and casinos should launch by early 2022.

Will widespread online gambling be available across Ontario?

It already is. Ontario Lottery and Gaming’s website is a fully functional online casino and sportsbook. Once more brands launch their online sportsbooks and casinos, this will be even more the case.

What is the legal gambling age in Ontario?

This province splits the gambling age into two. To play lottery games, you need to be 18 or older. However, casino games, slots, and any type of online play are restricted to players who are 19 or older.

Do I need to pay taxes on gambling or lottery winnings?

No. Ontario does not tax gambling winnings unless you are a “pro” gambler — for example playing poker or betting on sports professionally. You can win lottery games or slot jackpots, or strike it lucky with a big parlay bet, and keep all your winnings as long as you are not a professional gambler.

Is it legal to play at offshore casino sites?

Offshore gambling sites don’t necessarily break any Ontario or federal laws. This makes it legal to gamble for real money at these offshore sites. However, a federal statute prevents the sites from operating gambling houses in Canada. The difficulty in distinguishing exactly where these online gambling houses are operating when you place a bet with one from inside Canada is why most consider offshore sites to be operating in a grey area. They may be technically against the law, but it’s not a law anyone is doing anything about. Of course, with a provincially run online casino already here, and more legal online casinos on the way, you can now stay out of the grey area.

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