Virginia Online Casino Real Money – Gambling Laws in the Old Dominion State

Posted by Dave Consolazio

Gambling in Virginia

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Online Sports Betting
Land-Based Gambling

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Playing at a offshore online casino in Virginia is not restricted and if you’re looking for one, GambleOnline is the right place for you. In recent years, the state has legalized online lottery sales, iLottery games, and sports betting.

There are cities where gambling is legal such as Portsmouth, Norfolk, Danville, and Bristol but for those of you who don’t live there, out-of-state online casinos are your option.

In this guide, you’ll learn about Virginia gambling laws, legal forms of gaming within the state, and where you can legally enjoy these activities.

Summary of VA Gambling Laws

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Virginia has made significant progress in recent years with its gaming regulations. While online casino gambling remains unregulated, the state has legalized various other gaming activities.

Here is a brief overview of the legal gambling options available in Virginia.

Is Online Gambling Legal?Yes
Playing at Online CasinosYes
Legal Age Online21
Land-Based CasinosYes
Legal Age Land-Based21
Online Sports BettingYes
Charitable GamblingYes
State LotteryYes
Social GamingYes

Gambling is legal in multiple forms in Virginia. The following table summarizes Virginia laws for all forms of gambling, including brick-and-mortar and online casinos.

GamblingVirginia Legal Status
Casino GamblingCasino gambling is only legal in eligible host cities. The cities of Portsmouth,  Norfolk, Danville, and Bristol all passed referendums allowing casinos. Richmond is eligible, but a referendum has yet to pass.
Online GamblingSeveral forms of online gambling are legal. Online sports betting, lottery, horse racing, and Daily Fantasy Sports are legal. Virginia has not addressed online casino gaming via legislation, so Virginians can legally play at out-of-state online casinos.
PokerPoker is legal in Virginia inside its five casinos or in charitable Texas Hold’em poker tournaments. Currently, only Rivers Casino offers live poker. Home game poker is permitted if the house does not profit from the game.
Horse Racing BettingHorse racing has been legal in Virginia since 1988. Three tracks in Virginia hold racing events. Historical horse racing machine betting was legalized in 2018, and online horse racing is legal through advance deposit wagering.
Dog Racing BettingDog racing is illegal in Virginia, as is simulcasting of greyhound races for commercial purposes.
LotteryThe VA Lottery became legal in 1987, with ticket sales beginning in September 1988. Virginians can play scratch and draw games both live and online.
Daily Fantasy SportsVirginia was the first state to legalize Daily Fantasy Sports. The Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services regulates DFS, and 11 sites hold licenses.
Sports BettingSports betting is legal in Virginia. Retail sports betting is only permitted in casinos. Online sports betting is legal, with 16 online sportsbooks currently licensed in the state.
Charitable GamingCharitable gambling is legal and regulated by the Virginia Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services. Bingo, electronic bingo, raffles, duck races, and Texas Hold’em poker tournaments are legal.
Social GamingSocial gambling is currently legal in Virginia. Online casinos and poker are among the most popular forms of social gaming.

Best Virginia Online Casinos

We’re always on the lookout for the best online casinos serving Virginians. Below are some of our top recommendations to help you pick the best casino for you.

Where to Gamble in Virginia

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Virginians have seen remarkable growth in the gaming sphere in recent years. There are numerous live and online gambling options in the state, including access to online sports betting and horse racing.

As Virginia lawmakers have increasingly embraced progressive views on this matter, we expect options for live and online gambling to explode in the near future.

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Land-Based Casinos in Virginia

Online casinos are currently only legal in four cities in Virginia. Bristol, Danville, Norfolk, and Portsmouth passed referendums allowing casinos. 

Rivers Casino in Portsmouth is the only casino to finish construction. Danville and Bristol are operating temporary locations.

Hard Rock Hotel & Casino Bristol500 Gate City Hwy, Bristol VA, 24201Tri-Cities
Caesars Virginia1100 W. Main St Danville VA, 24541Southwest Virginia
Rivers Casino Portsmouth3630 Victory Blvd, Portsmouth VA, 23701Southeast Virginia
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Horse & Dog Tracks

There are three ways to bet on horses in Virginia. There are three state racetracks, eight OTB locations, and three online ADW sites.

Colonial Downs, Shenandoah Downs, and Great Meadows Steeplechase Course host live racing events. 

Rosies Gaming Emporium operates six of the eight OTB locations throughout Virginia. The other locations include Breakers Sports Grille in Henrico and Buckets Bar & Grill in Chesapeake.

Online horse wagering is permitted in Virginia through Advance Deposit Wagering. TwinSpires Racebook, DRF Bets, and TVG Racebook are licensed and regulated ADW providers in Virginia.

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Online Sports Betting

Online sports betting is legal in Virginia. There are currently 16 online sportsbooks operating in the state.

Only licensed operators are permitted to operate in Virginia. Top online sportsbooks in the state include Fanduel, DraftKings, Caesars, Bet365, ESPN BET, and SI Sportsbook. 

Players can bet on professional sports and most collegiate sports. Virginians may not bet on in-state schools or player prop bets.

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Bingo Halls and Charitable Gambling

Charitable gambling is permitted in Virginia. The forms of legal charitable gambling defined by law are bingo, duck races, raffles, and Texas Hold’em poker tournaments. Electronic bingo is permitted, but operators must apply for a special permit.

If an organization expects to receive gross receipts of $40,000 or more in a year, it must apply for a permit from the Virginia Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services.

The most commonly held form of charitable gambling is bingo, which is done at bingo halls around the state. They are generally held at Rurital Clubs or American Legion Halls.

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Social Gaming at Home

Virginia is somewhat lenient regarding residential gambling. Games of chance are legal in private residences, provided that the host is not benefiting from the game.

The most common example of this is home poker. Hosts can play in the games but cannot charge rake, entry fee, or receive tips.

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Poker Rooms and Clubs

Currently, the live poker room in Virginia is at Rivers Casino Portsmouth. They have a 24-table poker room with weekly tournaments and a $100k Bad Bead Jackpot.

Caesars Virginia and Hard Rock Hotel & Casino Bristol will include a poker room once they open permanent locations. Caesars plans to open a World Series of Poker-themed room.

Another option for live poker is bar poker leagues. Organizations like World Tavern Poker hold tournaments weekly across the state.

The Virginia legislature has not legalized online poker, but you can still play at licensed offshore poker rooms. 

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The four land-based casinos are the only place in Virginia where eight-liners are legal. These games will take the form of video keno or video bingo.

However, eight-liners that fall in the skill game classification are now illegal. Skill games were officially banned in Virginia on November 15, 2023.

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Casino Cruises

No companies currently offer casino cruises in Virginia. However, Carnival Cruise Line offers casino gaming on most cruises departing from Norfolk.

Passengers can gamble once the boat reaches international waters. More information is available on Carnival’s website.

Real Money Online Casino Virginia – Games You Can Play

real money online casino virginia

The top gambling sites offer Virginians a wide array of real money games. You get 24-7 access and can usually find lower stakes than brick-and-mortar casinos.

Below are some of the games you can find at Virginia online casinos.

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Online Slots

Virginia’s state-regulated casinos provide live slot machines, but the most convenient way to enjoy slot gaming is through online platforms.

All legitimate online casinos offer a large library of online slots. You can enjoy classic slots, video slots, Megaways slots, and other popular variants.

Among the top attractions, the jackpot slots are fan favorites because of their fixed and progressive prizes that have the potential to change lives.

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Online Poker

Poker is growing in Virginia. Cash game and tournament poker is legal in state-regulated casinos, and residents can also hone their skills online.

Multiple reputable and licensed poker rooms are available in Virginia and offer a wide variety of games. Texas Hold’em and Omaha poker are your primary options, with some sites also offering Seven Card Stud and Short Deck Hold’em.

Online poker rooms offer a wide variety of cash games and poker tournaments. Some even hold satellites to events on the World Series of Poker and World Poker Tour.

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Blackjack games are legal in Virginia at state-regulated casinos, and licensed online options are available for those who don’t live near a gaming facility.

Online blackjack offerings within these platforms encompass a variety of forms, including traditional versions and popular variants like Perfect Pairs Blackjack, 21+3 Blackjack, and Double Exposure Blackjack.

Online blackjack offers an excellent opportunity to hone your skills and learn proper strategy. One advantage of playing blackjack online is a lower minimum bet.

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Live Dealer Games

Live Dealer games give you the look and feel of live casino gambling from your computer or mobile device. These are streamed live with live dealers and offer the ability to interact with other players.

Most Live Dealers include blackjack, baccarat, roulette, and poker. Some sites offer non-traditional games like Sic Bo and Andar Bahar.

Live Dealer games are the next best thing if you can’t travel to live casinos in Virginia.

Other Available Games at Virginia Online Casinos

Real-money online casinos offer a well-rounded library of games. Most sites offer roulette, primarily European and French variants

Virginians can play bingo, Keno, scratch tickets, and video poker. Some casinos also offer skill-based games like Minesweeper and Solitaire.

You’ll also find dice games, such as Craps, Sic Bo, and Roll the Dice.

Top Bonuses at Gambling Sites for Virginia Players

Casino bonuses offer an excellent opportunity to maximize your deposit and test everything the site offers

Here are some of the top bonuses available to Virginian players at licensed and reputable online casinos.

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At Bovada, new players get a 100% match bonus of up to $1,000 on their first three deposits.

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Bonus funds are playable on all slots and standard table games.

Alternative bonus available for sports bettors.

Online poker rooms are available with a separate welcome bonus.

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  • Bonus funds cannot be used for Live Dealer games

Virginia Online Gambling Laws

Virginia law prohibits any form of gambling that is not explicitly exempted. Currently, sports betting, part-mutual betting, lottery, Daily Fantasy Sports, and charitable gaming such as bingo are exempted.

Other than sports betting, lottery, and DFS, online gambling laws are undefined.

As such, Virginians can still legally access and play at online casinos located outside the state.

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Is Online Gambling Legal in Virginia?

Online gambling currently falls in a legal gray area except for where activities are specified by law. 

In 2018, the Department of Justice issued an opinion that interstate or offshore online casinos was prohibited under the Federal Wire Act. 

However, on January 21, 2021, the First Circuit Court of Appeals struck down this opinion, restricting the scope of the Wire Act to sports betting. The ruling allows players to still access online casinos from outside Virginia.

In terms of explicitly legal online gambling, Daily Fantasy Sports was the first form of online gambling legalized in the state. It was signed into law in 2016. Online lottery sales soon followed, authorized by Virginia in 2018, with e-games added in 2019.

Sports betting was legalized by the state legislature in 2020 and launched in 2021. 

Online casino gambling has yet to be regulated or outlawed by Virginia legislators.

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Virginia Law Prohibits Most Forms of Gambling – Including Skill Games

Virginia laws make it illegal to bet money or anything of value on a game of chance. The law further clarifies that this includes purchasing products or any alternative form of payment. 

One interesting inclusion in Virginia law is skill games. These gambling machines simulate slots and are popular in convenience stores. (Section 18.2-325 of Virginia Code)

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Illegal Gambling Operations

Anyone conducting an illegal gambling operation can be charged with a Class 6 felony. 

If the operation is open more than 30 days or has more than $2,000 in gross revenue in any single day, the operator will be subject to a fine of up to $20,000 and up to 10 years in prison. (Section 18.2-328 of Virginia Code)

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Legal Forms of Gambling

The following activities are legal in Virginia and exempt from gambling laws:

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Counties May Adopt Illegal Gambling Ordinances

Virginia law permits local county governments to adopt illegal gambling ordinances. These laws must not conflict with state law but can also have separate penalties, including fines of up to $2,500 and up to 12 months in jail. (Section 18.2-340 of Virginia Code)

*Please be advised that the information provided on this page does not constitute legal advice. Our team strongly recommends you seek professional counsel from a qualified attorney regarding your specific questions or concerns on the topic.

Virginia Online Gambling vs. Neighboring States

Let’s look at how Virginia stacks up compared to neighboring states regarding legal online gambling.

US StatePlaying at Online CasinosState Regulated CasinosSocial CasinosOnline Sports BettingLotteryFantasy SportsCharitable Gaming
VirginiaGray AreaNo LegalLegalLegalLegalLegalLegal
West VirginiaLegalLegalLegalLegalNot LegalLegalLegal
MarylandGray AreaNo LegalLegalLegalNot LegalLegalLegal
North CarolinaOffshore OnlyNot LegalLegalLegalNot LegalLegalLegal
KentuckyNot LegalNot LegalLegalLegalLegalLegalLegal
TennesseeGray AreaNot LegalLegalLegalLegalLegalNot Legal

Virginia and its surrounding states are similar in terms of online gambling laws. All states have approved online sports betting, but only Virginia and Kentucky offer online lottery ticket sales.

The only state that has state-regulated online casinos is West Virginia. Tennessee is the only state that does not presently offer charitable gambling.

While most states do not offer state-regulated online options, playing at licensed offshore sites is still legal.

Online Casino Virginia – Tips to Play Safely

Since Virginia has yet to regulate online gambling, your only option is to play at out-of-state casinos. To help you in your search, here are a few tips for finding safe online casinos serving Virginia.


Do Your Research

Do your research and look at multiple casinos. Evaluate multiple sources and reviews to avoid bias and to get a better overview of each casino.

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Play at Licensed Casinos

Licensed casinos follow strict regulations and are required to have certified RNG software for games. This helps to protect players and ensure fairness in gaming.

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Look for Top-Rated Software Providers

Only play at online casinos that offer games from top-rated providers like Real Time Gaming, BetSoft, and Rival. Established providers provide high-quality, licensed gaming.

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Review Banking Options

Check out the options for making deposits and cashing out at casinos. Look for popular options like credit cards, e-wallets, and cryptocurrency.

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Check Reviews from Other Virginians

Visit popular gambling forums and look for reviews about casinos from fellow Virginians. Evaluate all aspects and watch for patterns of complaints from players.

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Read the Fine Print

Take some time to read the terms and conditions of the casino, including the terms for bonuses. Reading terms will help you discover if there are any usual or predatory terms before you make a deposit.

Pros & Cons of Gambling in Virginia

While Virginia has made tremendous progress in gambling regulation, there’s progress yet to be made. Here are the pros and cons of gambling in Virginia.


  • Live casino gambling is legal in four cities
  • Retail and online sports betting legal
  • Online lottery and horse racing legal
  • Over 250 bingo halls throughout the state
  • Virginians can legally gamble at out-of-state online casinos


  • Land-based casino locations are inconvenient to many in-state
  • No state-regulated online casinos
  • No state-regulated online poker rooms

The Future of Online Gambling in Virginia: Our Prediction

A few years ago, Virginia’s online gaming prospects would have been slim to none. However, since 2018, the state has made tremendous strides toward gambling legalization.

Online lottery sales started in 2019 with lawmakers approving sports betting and live casinos

2021 proved to be a breakthrough year as four cities approved referendums for live casinos, and online sports betting was launched. 

For now, expect Virginia to focus on its new gambling market and its maturing sports betting market. As these options prove popular and lawmakers look to expand gambling tax revenue, we can then expect them to look at legalizing online gambling.

While we hear occasional rumblings about online casino regulation in Virginia, new legislation has yet to be introduced. The only neighboring state with regulated online gambling sites is West Virginia, so lawmakers do not yet feel pressured to keep up with other localities.

In the meantime, Virginians can still access out-of-state online casinos.

We ultimately expect Virginia to legalize online gaming, with an estimated timetable of two to five years before lawmakers consider legislation. Until then, you can still play at licensed and certified out-of-state online gambling sites.

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VA Gambling FAQs

Still have questions about online gambling in Virginia? We have the answers.


As part of our commitment to transparency, it’s important to disclose that this website engages in affiliate marketing. This means that when you click on our links to online casinos and make a purchase or sign up, we may earn a commission.

These commissions contribute to the upkeep of our platform and the creation of valuable content. While we aim to provide accurate and unbiased information, it’s crucial to note that our reviews are not influenced by affiliate partnerships.

Additionally, we advocate for responsible gambling practices and encourage users to gamble responsibly. If you believe you may have a gambling problem, please seek assistance from relevant support services.