Russian People’s Gambling

Since the worldwide outbreak of the Covid virus in 2020, there has been a growing demand for online gaming across the world, especially in Russia. This can be observed in the wider context, the gaming industry is making slow but steady progress toward greater liberalization.

Russian Gambling Culture and History

Gambling was permitted in Russia before its admission into the Soviet Union in 1928. It was a popular hobby, especially among the elite who frequented exclusive gambling clubs. Meanwhile, under the Soviet Union, all forms of gaming were prohibited. As Russia transitioned to a free market system following the breakup of the Soviet Union, legal gambling facilities began to spring up across the country. Russia had a large number of casinos in the 1990s. In Moscow alone, fifty land-based casinos were functioning in the early 2000s. 

During this time, Russia was a stronghold for the casino industry. However, online gambling was forbidden in 2006 by the authorities, and things changed. There were four recognized locations in 2009 where land-based casinos might operate. In 2012, the Russian government started restricting foreign and domestic access to internet casinos. Since then, it has continued to do so. Casinos from around the world were placed on a no-fly list in 2014.

Laws About Gambling in Russia

The laws that govern land-based casinos and those that govern online gambling are not the same in Russia. Land-based casinos are only allowed to operate legally in a few jurisdictions. The following regions in Russia are separate homes to specially designated locations for the operation of land-based casinos:

  • Primorye;
  • Altay;
  • Krasnodar;
  • Kaliningrad.

It is rumoured that casinos are functioning in other places, usually while disguising themselves as online clubs, which is illegal because the legislation prohibits such businesses. It’s interesting to note that both lotteries and betting on sports are lawful in Russia. At this time, Russian law does not permit the operation of online casinos. As a consequence of this, there are no native operators of genuine online casinos in the country. 

Players in Russia who gamble at online casinos run the risk of receiving a huge fine as a result of the country’s gambling legislation. However, there is not a single case that may serve as a model for this. Players from all over the world flock to online casinos like Vera John Casino which provide slot machines and live dealer table games. Gambling is a popular pastime among many Russian folks. There are international online casinos that welcome Russian players, and some of those casinos are based overseas.

The Theory of Online Betting

The regulations that govern gambling and gaming in Russia are extremely stringent, and you will be violating the rules if you decide to participate in online betting. Since poker is a game of strategy and not of probability, some people question whether or not it can be included in this law. On the other hand, it is abundantly clear that betting on sports and playing casino games are both against the law. 

Nevertheless, the reality shows that amidst the strict regulations, one of the most popular pastime pursuits for Russians continues to be virtual betting. This is because the Russian government is much more preoccupied with locating and prosecuting those who run illegal betting and casino operations than it does with the gamblers themselves. The Russian government does not appear to have any interest in online punters who place bets and play games via the internet. This is abundantly clear when one considers that financial transactions involving gambling between individuals residing in Russia and offshore betting industries are still possible and continue to take place even though such dealings are officially regarded as unlawful acts. 

Roskomnadzor is still aggressively blacklisting new websites, and its notorious list of prohibited online gambling sites is continually updated with the addition of new entries. Presently, it encompasses even some of the most well-known websites, like Poker Stars. However, Russian citizens who were already using the online casino app just before the ban was implemented can continue to use the features provided by the website. The fact of the matter is that even though sports betting and gambling are deemed to be banned in Russia, residents of the country are still able to gamble and make bets online if they can discover a way to use it. They will most likely not be restrained, nor will they be formally penalized for the actions that they have taken. 

It is assumed that over 65% of gambling in Russia is conducted in an unethical way, with the majority of this unlawful activity taking place through unauthorized online betting platforms. Domestic companies are not permitted to provide services related to online gaming at this time, and Broadband providers are obligated to prevent access to gambling websites. 

Obtaining a Gaming License in Russia

The Ministry of Finance is the entity responsible for issuing gambling licenses. You are required to get in touch with them if you want to launch any kind of gaming business in the Russian Federation. Additionally, the website can be accessed in English too. 

Land-Based Betting Licenses

Russia makes gaming licenses for land-based casinos available to independent operators. In Russia, it is possible to obtain a license to operate a casino, tote office, slot machine hall, or bookmaker. Only the designated gaming areas are allowed to house casinos and other gambling establishments like slot machine facilities. Beyond these zones, bookmakers and betting offices on sporting events are permitted to set up shop. 

Online Betting Licenses

Russia’s private companies can apply for licenses to run online gaming ventures. If you are interested in launching an online casino company in Russia, you should get in touch with the Federal Tax Service, which is in charge of issuing betting licenses. At the moment, by the modification that was made to the Russian gaming statute in 2016. You can only obtain a license to engage in tote gambling or virtual sports betting. 

Gaming Taxes

Gambling is not subject to any kind of taxation in Russia because there are no such laws. Since 2014, the authorities of Russia have granted the state a greater degree of power over the casino sites and sportsbooks located within the country. Gamblers are solely subject to the tax on their winnings. Gamblers who win money at the casino have their winnings subject to a tax rate of 13 %, regardless of how much money they take home. 

To add more ambiguity to the situation, a gambler who wins money at a facility in Russia would be obliged to complete a tax return form and declare the amount of tax he is obligated to pay. For instance, if a gambler wins $200, the Russian authorities will force him to pay a tax of $26 on the winnings. This is in contrast to a gambler who wins at a betting site, in which case the bookmaker is compelled to take a proportion of the winner’s earnings and then pay that amount to the government.

Zones for Legally Played Games

Gambling is not fully banned in Russia, as previously stated. To gamble in Russia, you can visit one of the following areas: 

Kaliningrad DistrictAs one of Russia’s most western areas, Kaliningrad district has much to offer its residents. It is Russia’s only Baltic harbour that does not ice over in the winter. The Sobranie Casino may be found right here. There are slots and table games like poker. With a staggering 193,750 square feet of gaming space, it’s also one of the biggest casinos in Europe.
Altai KraiSiberia’s southernmost region is Altai Krai. In this location, you’ll discover a lot of casinos. The Altai Palace Casino is located in the heart of the Siberian Coin betting district, making it one of the region’s most important gambling destinations. Getting away from the commotion of Russia’s major cities is a fantastic way to spend a vacation in this area.
Krasnodar KraiSochi, the Black Sea resort city of Krasnodar Krai, may be found in the North Caucasus zone. Every amenity you could desire can be found in this well-known vacation city. From a relaxing day at the seaside to a wild night at the casino, they can accommodate any of your desires. One of the nicest spots to see how Russians enjoy their vacations is in Sochi.
Primorsky KraiLocated in the Far East, Primorsky Krai is a vast region. Vladivostok, among several other cities, is positioned in this remote location and serves as Russia’s finance and business hub for the Far East. An important location here is the Primorye Gaming Zone. The Russians hope to lure not only Russian players but also wealthy Asian tourists looking for a shift of scenery from Macau’s party atmosphere.

The Significance of Legalizing Gambling

As in most places in Russia gambling is restricted, people often choose to play for free on different  platforms. The best option is to play with no download and no registration like here on one of the most popular sites of Russian people: There it is possible to play for free and in another case, to find the links to reliable casinos, that will protect the users’ data, when playing for real money. However, there is a number of compelling arguments that may be made in favour of making gambling legal in a given nation and letting people play under the law.  These are the following: 

Tax Issue

The amount of money that could be made by taxing casinos is huge. The very existence of this fact makes it quite clear that gambling should be legalized. It’s a nice little moneymaker for any government that wants it. It is a well-established truth that the casino always comes out on top, and when you glance at those expanding gambling establishments, you can tell that they are making loads of money. 

The payment of taxes by casinos on the total amount of money they make from gambling is a significant driver of economic growth in many countries. The GGR & betting taxes are calculated differently in each jurisdiction, although they are always based on a proportion of the gross winnings. Setting these tax rates is a challenge for governments since they don’t want to scare away potential new businesses, but at the same time, they want a share of the future income that might be earned. 


It is impossible to place enough emphasis on the fact that people’s safety and well-being should always come first. When individuals are prevented from doing something, it tends to increase their desire to engage in that activity. And if the law is unwilling to permit it to occur in a controlled manner, illegal organizations will be more than eager to give their services. When you force people to engage in these things in secret, you give them no choice but to interact with unscrupulous people. 

This is where the most significant risks are present. People would be vulnerable to having their life savings stolen from them, as there would be no safeguards in place to prevent this from happening. Players are safeguarded when they have access to both a reputable brick-and-mortar casino sector as well as an authorized internet gambling industry. 


Each year, millions of people from all over the world travel to gambling vacation spots like Macau and Las Vegas in search of better fortune. Incredible casino comps persuade high rollers from all over the world, who then contribute a significant amount of funds to the local economy as a result of their gambling activities. 

The whales aren’t the only ones who make an impact, either. Gambling sites are frequented by those celebrating a wide variety of life milestones, including bachelor or bachelorette parties, family vacations, and weddings.


In-person casinos are permitted in Russia; however, access to them is limited to certain zones designated specifically for that purpose. Before the implementation of this ban, the gambling industry was a perpetual source of issues. Such as engagement in organized crime, financial crimes, evasion of taxes, as well as a few homicides here and there. Moreover, since 2009, casinos are only permitted to operate inside the geographic areas that have been specifically approved for gaming. Despite the tight supervision that the Russian government maintains over the industry, Russia was still successful in luring high-profile entrepreneurs from other countries.