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Gambling Laws in Austria

Austria is a gambling-friendly country with multiple forms of legal gambling available. You can legally gamble online in Austria or in-person at one of the brick-and-mortar casinos.

Austria gambling laws are separated by the type and scope of the gambling activity. We will use this page to explain all the gambling laws and regulations in Austria.

Let’s start by exploring the federal laws that govern online gambling in Austria.

Is Online Gambling Legal in Austria?

The question most Austrian gamblers ask is, “is online gambling in Austria legal?” The answer is yes.

Online gambling is legal. You are free to engage in casino gambling, sports betting, and other forms of gambling online in Austria.

The legality of online gambling in Austria is not likely to change anytime soon. However, the sites you can use might.

It all depends on who operates a site and whether they can get and keep an online gambling license in Austria.

Licensed Online Gambling Sites in Austria

Austria online casino laws give the Ministry of Finance the authority to license casino corporations. These casino licenses include the ability to offer online casino games.

However, there are strict rules about who can qualify for an Austria casino license.

Here are some of the regulations that corporations must agree to.

  • Licensed casino corporations must be located in Austria.
  • Austrian casino corporations cannot offer their services to international customers.
  • Casinos must offer player protection protocols, including time and stake limits.
  • All revenue that the casino generates is subject to Austria’s gambling tax laws.

There is only one corporation that meets these regulations. Casinos Austria currently is the only licensed online casino site in Austria. They offer all the standard casino games.

However, you can access online casino games from another source.

The online gambling laws in Austria also give the country’s lottery company the right to offer online casino gambling.

The Austrian Lottery operates a site called win2day. This site offers online lottery tickets, bingo, sports betting, poker, and casino games.

These are the only two legal gambling operators in Austria.

Online Casinos from Outside Austria

Austria gambling laws make it difficult for operators to get an Austrian casino license. But, their laws do not say anything about players using sites that are not licensed by Austrian authorities.

Here are a few examples of corporations that could be considered to operate outside of the strict Austria online casino laws.

  • Licensed online casinos corporations that operate in a different country
  • Austrian casino companies that offer their services to international customers under a license from a different country
  • Unlicensed casino sites

Austria’s player protection laws do not apply to casino sites not licensed by the Ministry of Finance.

Gambling sites that are licensed are much safer than unlicensed sites, even if they’re licensed in a country other than Austria. Unfortunately, it is difficult for you to know which sites are which.

Our recommendations and Austria casino reviews are excellent resources that can tell you about the licensing and trustworthiness of any gambling site worth joining.

Changes to Austria’s Online Gambling Legislation

Austria gambling legislation, known as Glücksspielgesetz or GSpG, was created in 1989. It has been amended sixteen times since then.

The most recent amendment to the Federal Gambling Act was passed in 20. It looks like an update will come in late 2021 or early 2022.

Austria’s Ministry of Finance oversees GSpG. The Ministry is in the process of creating a new regulatory authority to oversee online gambling in Austria.

This new regulatory organization does not have a name yet. But Finance Minister Gernot Blümel has already outlined some of the things it will be responsible for.

  • Creating a self-exclusion program to prevent addictive gambling across Austria for both online and land-based casinos.
  • Cultivating a blacklist of gambling sites to be blocked by Austrian ISPs.
  • Determining whether loot boxes should be considered gambling.
  • Implementing prevention measures to make sure loot boxes do not lead to later gambling addictions for younger players.
  • Creating online gambling regulations such as time limits, maximum stakes, and maximum monthly deposit amounts to prevent addictive gambling.
  • Suggesting anti-corruption measures to prevent casino corporations from influencing politicians.
  • Determining a budget for player protection and prevention of problem gambling.

These new Austria gambling laws and regulations are not yet finalized.

Once the Ministry of Finance has approved the new regulations, the bill will be sent to Austria’s parliament for final review.

What the Changes Mean for Players

Austria gambling site blacklist

Most of the upcoming changes to Austrian gambling laws focus on rules that casino operators must agree to.

As a gambler in Austria, you do not have to worry about anti-corruption measures or managing a self-exclusion program.

However, if this bill moves forward as planned, it will affect your online gambling experience.

The most noteworthy provision is the possibility of an online gambling blacklist. It would give the new gambling regulator the authority to block access to blacklisted sites.

The blacklist criteria will be set once the new Austria online gambling laws are passed.

Another provision that will affect players is the player protection limits that the new gambling authority chooses to set.

Players may get kicked out of an online casino site after a certain amount of time, and stakes may be limited.

Those are the major changes to look out for when the new Austria online gambling legislation is passed. They should ensure that safe, regulated online gambling in Austria continues to be available.

Federal Land-Based Gambling Laws in Austria

Casinos Austria

The GSpG is the primary gambling legislation in Austria. It covers both land-based and online gambling on a large scale.

According to Austrian laws for gambling, casinos must be operated by a licensed casino company. When Glücksspielgesetz got passed, it authorized the Ministry of Finance to offer 15 casino licenses.

Twelve of those casino licenses went to Casinos Austria. Three other casino operators initially received a casino license, but their licenses were revoked when they chose not to follow Austrian gambling laws.

As a result, Casinos Austria has a legal monopoly on gambling in Austria. Six of their casinos are in urban locations. The other six cater to more rural communities.

All of the Casinos Austria locations offer a variety of gaming opportunities, including blackjack, roulette, poker, and slot machines.

These casinos do not have maximum stakes, time limits, or a limit on the number of games they can offer.

Austria Lottery Laws

Another aspect of GSpG is Austria’s lottery laws. Austrian Lotteries is another legal monopoly that operates all lottery-style games in Austria.

In addition to draw and instant-win games, Austrian Lotteries also operates video lottery terminals throughout the country.

They also offer Toto sports betting. It is similar to parlay wagering, where players must place multiple bets simultaneously.

Casinos Austria and the Austrian Lottery are separate corporations. These two companies are the only options for regulated gambling in Austria.

However, Casinos Austria owns a stake in the Austrian Lottery company. That means that it profits from every type of legal gambling in Austria.

Gambling Tax Rates in Austria

Casinos and gambling houses pay taxes based on the products they offer.

Here are the tax rates for various activities.

Gambling Product Tax Rate
Sports betting 2% tax on all stakes
Online gambling or electronic lotteries 40% tax on Gross Gambling Revenue
Lottery Games 2-27.5%
Slot machines and VLTs in Gambling Salons 10% on Net Gambling Revenue, + Provincial Gambling fees
Land-based Casinos 30% tax on Gross Gambling Revenue

Provincial Gambling Law in Austria

The Glücksspielgesetz oversees gambling at the federal level. It also gives each province the right to govern certain forms of gambling.

The most significant exception is what GSpG calls Kleines Glücksspiel, or small gambling. You can find small gambling in “gambling salons” throughout the country.

Gambling salons are licensed by their provincial gambling authority. Here are some of the gambling laws and regulations for small gambling in Austria.

  • Gambling salons cannot have more than 50 gaming machines.
  • They cannot accept wagers for more than €10. Some provinces have maximum stakes as low as €1.
  • Players must insert a player’s loyalty card to start a gaming machine. These cards must track how much time and money a player spends.
  • Gaming machines in gambling salons automatically turn off after two hours to give the player a cooling-off period.

GSpG defines sports betting as a game of skill instead of a game of luck. Therefore, Austria betting laws are governed by each province.

Here is an overview of the sports betting laws in each Austrian province.

Province Sports Betting Regulations
Burgenland Sports betting is allowed with no restrictions.
Carinthia Sports betting is allowed, except for bets on criminal activity. Electronic betting terminals must be turned off between 2-8 a.m.
Lower Austria Sports betting is allowed with no restrictions.
Upper Austria Sports betting is allowed, but there is a €500 limit. Betting is not allowed between midnight and 6 a.m. You cannot bet on death or injuries during a sporting event.
Salzburg Sports betting is allowed with limits. No bets more than €500 are allowed. You cannot bet on death, injury, virtual events, horse racing, animal events, or amateur sporting events.
Styria Sports betting is allowed, but it has several restrictions. You cannot bet on death, injury, or virtual events. In-game bets are limited to half-time scores, end-game scores, and who will make the next goal.
Tyrol Sports betting is allowed between 6 a.m. and midnight.
Vorarlberg Sports betting is allowed between 6 a.m. and midnight.
Vienna You can only bet between 6 a.m. and midnight. Bets are not allowed on death, injury, dog racing, or animal events. Vienna follows the same in-game betting rules as Styria. Comps are not allowed.

The History of Gambling in Austria

Austria has a long history of gambling. That also means there is a long history of gambling legislation in Austria.

We have created this timeline you can see how the betting and gaming laws in Austria have changed over the years.

1696 Leopold I, Emporer of the Holy Roman Empire, created the first Austrian gambling law. This law authorized criminal charges for illegal gambling as a response to a dramatic increase in gambling activities. Around the same time, a Viennese court began offering licenses for card and dice games.
1700s Gambling spread through all levels of society. Archduchess Maria Theresa and Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart were both well-known gamblers.
1751 A private company operated Austria’s first lottery. The Genova Lottery is a draw game where players choose five numbers between 1 and 90. This game is still available in Austria today.
1773 The Austrian government took over the private company that operated the first lottery. It has been operating the lottery ever since. Government-operated lotteries were often used to support building projects or meet the citizens’ needs.
1912 Austria’s lottery introduced the class lottery program. Before this program, a traveling salesman would sell lottery tickets around the country. The lottery numbers would not get chosen until all of the tickets had been sold. Class lotteries allowed more frequent drawings by separating tickets into groups.
1934 Austria opened its first modern casinos in Semmering and Baden.
1938 Austria prohibited the operation of casinos. Some casinos that were already open were allowed to continue operating.
1950 Austria reverses its casino prohibition.
1967 Österreichische Spielbanken began operating. It is the same company that is today known as Casinos Austria. The company took over several casinos that other companies operated.
1970 Blackjack gets introduced to Austrian casinos for the first time. It started with casinos in Vienna.
1985 Österreichische Spielbanken rebrands as Casinos Austria.
1989 The Glücksspielgesetz was passed, creating casino and lottery licenses in Austria.
1990 Casinos Austria earns 12 of the new casino licenses and begins opening casinos across the country. Austrian Lottery won the country’s only lottery license. Casino Baden hosted the first European poker Championship.
2000 GSpG was amended to allow casinos to operate every day, except for Christmas Eve.
2003 Casinos Austria begins offering online casino games on win2day.at.
2007 Casino Baden, Austria’s oldest casino, re-opens after renovations.
2012/2013 GSpG casino licenses were separated into a city package and a federal province package. Casinos Austria received both license packages for the casinos that they already operated.
2013 The Ministry of Finance declared poker a game of chance. This decision forced dozens of poker clubs around the country to stop operating by 2020.
2017 Austrian online gambling laws gets scrutinized. Some politicians suggest an amendment that would allow ISPs to block unlicensed gambling sites.
2021 The Ministry of Finance has announced plans to create a new regulatory body to oversee online gambling laws in Austria and create player protection laws.

Conclusion – Austria Gambling Laws are Player-Friendly

Gambling laws in Austria

Austria is a gambling-friendly nation with a lot of options for both land-based and online betting and gaming.

Gamblers are free to gamble on any site they choose without fearing punishment, as Austria’s laws for gambling online apply mostly to the operators who apply for a licesne.

However, proposed updates to the online gambling laws in Austria may make it more difficult for gamblers to access sites that are not licensed in Austria.

We recommend checking the Ministry of Finance website for the latest information on Austria’s online gambling laws.

You can also check out our lists of the top online casinos and best online betting sites for advice on where to play.

Here are a few other facts to leave you with.

  • Gambling winnings are tax-exempt in Austria.
  • Daily fantasy sports (DFS) not included in Austrian gambling legislation. It is handled on a case-by-case basis.
  • Private poker games are outside the scope of Austrian gambling laws providing they are not run by businesses.
  • Esports betting is available in some provinces, including Lower Austria and Burgenland. Some provinces prohibit betting on virtual events, including esports.