Gambling operators make final exit from Australian market

Last day for Aussies gamblingIt’s the last day for Australian players to gamble at an online casino or participate in a poker tournament on the web.

The Interactive Gambling Amendment Act 2016, which received Assent last month, will be enforced as of September 13, 2017.

Several reputable gambling operators, which have remained in the market until the very last minute, notified players earlier this month via email that they will need to wager or withdraw any remaining funds.

Among these operators are G’day online casino, Jackpot City Casino, Casino.com, BGO casino, Platinum Play Casino and their respective sister casino brands.

Most online casinos have blocked Australians from signing up by now, but you may still be able to withdraw any remaining funds from your account. Contact support at your casino if you have any issues.

Software developers have announced their exit too, with Microgaming geo-blocking Australians from playing their games as of today.

A few casino operators already exited the Australian market, with 888 Poker the first to leave when the Minister for Human Services, Alan Tudge, introduced the Interactive Gambling Amendment bill last year.

Several other operators followed including GVC Holdings (Guts casino), while PokerStars and the aforementioned brands stuck around until the bill was signed into law.

Meanwhile, the country is just days away from the publication of a report based on a Senate inquiry into the prevalence of online poker for Australians.

Many thought the inquiry would delay the bill, which not only bans online casino gambling but professional poker tournaments available at reputable sites too.

The online poker community was devastated, given a special hearing held just days earlier saw many industry experts speak in support of a regulated poker industry.

But the Senate raced the bill through and passed the legislation, which will only push Australians to rogue online operators contradicting the Senator’s intentions of not only the bill but the Interactive Gambling Act 2001 too.

Casino operators offering free play

While the government cited problem gambling as a predominant issue behind the new reforms, it didn’t create any new support services for players who will be stopping online casino gambling cold turkey due to the mass exodus.

Many offshore casino operators have created free play options for Australians which may serve as a support service, with Platinum Play launching a play money casino on September 13, 2017, known as Play Royal Vegas. Players who already had an account with the casino can use the same log in details and claim a $5000 play money bonus.

PokerStars is also offering a free play app available to Australians to download to your smartphone or tablet. Known as PokerStars Play, Aussies (as well as American players) can get your Texas Hold’em and Omaha fix here.

We know it isn’t as good as the real thing, but thanks to the gambling reforms, Australian’s, unlike British and New Zealand players, have been censored when it comes to real money entertainment.

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  • Kathy O’Brien

    I beleive this was wrong what right has the goverment got to run our lifes what because the moneys going out of Australia at least these casinos payed out look at the rogue casinos we have in Australia its all over the news some people like to relax and have a flutter on the casinos the sooner we get another goverment the better you dont own us some of this reputable casinos have been stopped that have been allowing Australians to play worry about the other issues that are destroying our beautiful country the violence in melbourne people been to scared to go out and do there shopping people getting bashed in there homes robberies our crime rate has gone berserk and your worrying about people playing online games you are pathetic also our goverment banks funding terroism what a joke if people want to gamble its up to them but the ones that work hard and use this to relax are been punished because of problem gamblers no one twists your arms to play god this goverment is hated read the forum

    • disqus_GtvsM4l0Pt

      Lets face it, “stopping problem gamblers” is just yet another smoke screen, the real issue for the government is less people are walking into land based casinos and venues to spend their money which means less tax for the government, why would I walk into a pub and play slots with an 87.5% annual return to player? when I can go online at a reputable online casino and get up to 98% rtp. sure you don’t get your money in your hand immediately when you win but I have won some massive amounts online which I have never come close to in my local pub and still had the money is 3 to 4 days in my account. All the government sees is money going overseas and no way to make money on it, hence they come up with a BS excuse like curbing problem gambling and ban it. itll just push online users onto rogue casinos who delay payouts for months and screw users over on any technicality.

      • Charlie Casino

        It’s a disgrace really – it’s all about the government not being able to tax offshore sites. Packer has put his foot down. See now they are going to regulate poker…. Expect Crown to launch its own brand.

        • disqus_GtvsM4l0Pt

          I don’t understand why they say these sites need australian licences for us to play, that’s crap to. When I used to play bet365 casino they were fantastic, had aristocrat games and payed out super fast. Then they got an Australian licence for sports betting and Aust players weren’t allowed to play the casino anymore.

          • Charlie Casino

            Aristocrat is Australian-owned and based out of Sydney, they have not been available for a long time to Australians. But agreed it’s a real crock that the government is feeding the public on the IGA amendments. They are in essence saying that casinos that are licensed in the UK are not safe. The reality of the situation is it makes Australians play at casinos licensed in places like Curacao which have far less player protection measures.

          • Charlie Casino

            But i guess we gotta remember this is not about us – it’s about the Government losing tax revenue and poor old Packer losing out at his establishments.

      • Kathy O’Brien

        So right there really missing playing at my casino it sucks

  • Kathy O’Brien

    I beleive we should take up a petition this is pathetic yes i have won alot of money on online casinos goverment saying to keep money in Australia is bullshit there not getting any payback they can stick there Australian casinos where they fit

    • disqus_GtvsM4l0Pt

      There are still reputable casinos accepting Australian players as its microgaming who have stopped catering to us, it just means we can play microgaming casinos. Joe fortune has made microgaming slots unavailable to aussies but all their other rtg etc games are still avail.