One by one, states across the US are reforming their gambling laws. The advent of mobile casino gaming and sports betting has combined with changing attitudes to create a sea change that is sweeping across the United States.
Of course, some states are more enthusiastic about pushing through these reforms than others. New Jersey, for example, was the primary champion of getting federal laws struck down in 2018 that paved the way for the reforms we see today. Utah, on the other hand, can reasonably be expected to occupy the other end of the scale and will not be pushing through reformed gambling laws any time soon.
Gambling in the Lone Star State
At first glance, you would probably place Texas closer to the “Utah” end of our imaginary scale. After all, it was only last year that it was hailed the most conservative state in the Union and all major offices have been under Republican control since the days of George W Bush in the 1990s.
However, Texans have a “work hard, play hard” reputation. They love their sport and are not averse to games of chance. As such, there are more gambling options in Texas than you might expect.
Online casinos and sports books
Texas is one of the states that has yet to reform its gambling laws, so there is at present no infrastructure for betting online. However, all that means is that it is not legal to operate an online betting business within the state. If you want to play real money online casino in Texas there is nothing to prevent you from doing so. It simply means visiting a casino site that is based offshore.
It is worth noting that banks can run into trouble for facilitating online gambling. This is why many gamblers in Texas choose to use alternatives like Bitcoin to transfer money to and from their online gambling accounts.
Land based casinos
Texas is home to two physical casinos, both of which are on Reservation land. Kickapoo Lucky Eagle Casino Hotel is just to the south of Eagle Pass. The casino boasts hundreds of slots plus table games, poker and bingo.
The other casino is Nasilka Gaming in Livingstone, about an hour’s drive north of Houston. Here, the focus is very much on video slots, but there are also regular bingo games.
Texas has three Class One horse racing tracks, which are in Grand Prairie, Houston and Selma. There are also two greyhound racing tracks, one in Corpus Christi and the largest in Harlingen.
You can place bets on the horses, or indeed the dogs, at any one of these racecourses. However, off-track betting is not allowed.
Other forms of gambling
Charitable bingo nights are as popular as ever in Texas and raise millions for good causes every year, so get involved with a clear conscience!
There are also numerous poker clubs dotted around the state. However, as it is against State law for clubs to charge a rake, these sometimes sail close to the wind, charging “seat licenses” or levying significant mark-ups on food and beverages.