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Top casinos in Portugal – Online Casinos & Gambling Regulations



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Finding the best Portuguese casino online

Now that online casinos are regulated and licensed by authorities in Portugal, you can find plenty of safe and secure sites at which to play your favorite slots, table games, live dealer titles, progressive jackpots, and more. Here at GoodLuckMate, we’ve reviewed all of the reputable Portuguese online casinos so that you can get all of the important information about welcome bonuses (some of which include plenty of fabulous free spins), the significant terms and conditions to be aware of before signing up and full details on all the different types of games.

Additionally, you will find every payment method available to you, whether you want to deposit or withdraw via credit or debit cards, direct bank transfers, eWallets, prepaid vouchers, or cryptocurrencies like Bitcoin. We give you all the transaction times, limits, and whether you can do everything in euros. Furthermore, we always get in touch with the customer support team at various hours of the day and night to test the level of service you will receive. In short, then, we’ve got you covered every step of the way. So, before you sign on the dotted line, be sure to:

  • Read through a few GoodLuckMate reviews
  • Confirm your payment method is available
  • See that the site in question accepts euros
  • Check the site is translated into Portuguese
  • Go over all of the welcome bonus T&Cs

Once you’ve done all of that and you’ve found a place at which to register a new account, head back to the GLM casino review and click on the welcome bonus banner to get the best deal.

Gambling regulation – Serviço de Regulação e Inspeção de Jogos (SRIJ)

As mentioned above, the Portuguese gambling laws were changed in 2017 so that the market became fully regulated. This was passed through parliament as law under the Online Gambling and Betting Legal Regime. Following on from this all powers of regulation, licensing and taxation were handed over to the, wait for it, the Serviço de Regulação e Inspeção de Jogos, to give the full title, which falls under Turismo de Portugal (Portuguese Tourism). Essentially, it means the Gambling Regulatory and Inspection Authority. This is often, thankfully shorted to SRIJ.

Because of these changes to the law, all gambling activity including games of chance such as slots, jackpots, and table games, as well as games of skill such as poker are now officially legal. The same thing goes for sports betting, with football being the most popular choice in Portugal. So, whether playing at a Portuguese online or land-based casino, or putting a wager on Benfica, Sporting, or Porto at your local sports betting shop, the law is there to protect you. The only downside was that the taxes were too high for some brands, who decided to exit the market.

Localized online casinos

With more than 200 million speakers in Brazil, as well as the more than 10 million in Portugal itself and many more who speak the language in parts of Africa, you can be sure of finding plenty of online casinos in the Portuguese. All of the fully SRIJ-licensed sites will feature everything in Portuguese (including customer support) and may even offer a few live casino games in the language. So, you can be sure of having the best experience possible. And, of course, with Portugal being part of the EU, using euros won’t be a problem at hundreds of sites.

Casinos in Portugal

There are plenty of casino resorts and hotels located all over Portugal, with the major ones located in the most populated cities of Lisbon, Sintra, Vila Nova de Gaia, Porto, and Loures, as well as in some of the popular tourist towns along the coast. If you ever get the chance, we recommend visiting some of the oldest and most famous Portuguese land-based casinos such as Hotel Casino Chaves, Casino da Povoa, Casino Figueira, Casino Lisboa, and Casino Estoril. Remember that there are strict dress codes in place and the minimum table bets may be high!

Nerijus Grenda
Nerijus GrendaUpdated: 17 Mar 2021
Nerijus is one of our top writers here at GoodLuckMate, and he knows exactly what casino players want to read about. He got started in the iGaming industry as a player, more specif...

Dispute resolution – can I get help from a third party?


A gambling license is intended to protect players, and one of its main functions is to provide a mechanism for resolving disputes when they come up. If you have a dispute with a casino, and the casino is being unreasonable, the gambling authority will help you. For many licenses, this means you can contact the gambling authority to get help processing your withdrawals, claiming money the casino has debited from your account, or resolving other disputes that might arise. The likelihood that the gambling authority will help you in ways that are effective, however, depends on the procedures they have in place for this. This is yet another reason why choosing to play at a casino that has a safe license is important.

Getting help directly from the gambling authority is not always necessary, or even an option. A lot of regulators have now enforced third-party dispute resolution. This means casinos must have an agreement with an arbitrator who will look into disputes on the behalf of players from a particular casino. This ensures your dispute will be reviewed by an objective third party. All trusted online casinos have information about arbitration on their websites if they use this option, or they’ll have the contact information for the gambling authority you should consult. However, you should always try to resolve your issues with the casino first, and a lot of casinos have separate email addresses specifically for handling complaints.


Secure payments – can I trust a casino with my money?


If you’re worried about the security of the transactions you’re making at a casino, you should look for a logo with the acronym PCI DSS. This stands for Payment Card Industry Data Security Standard, and this is something the payment industry has created. If you see this logo, it means the casino can be trusted for safe money transactions since they follow all of the rules set by the payment industry. Information about this can also be found in an FAQ section on the casino’s website.

Another thing to look out for in terms of payments is where your money is kept while you play. Some gambling authorities, all of the best ones actually, regulate what the casino can do with your money while they are holding it. Your money shouldn’t go into a general bank account held by the casino; it should go into an account that is strictly for holding player funds. This means that as long as you have the money in your player account, it can’t be spent by the casino. Your deposit will be kept separate from the operating funds of the casino until your player account is empty, which will happen if you make a funds withdrawal or if you lose the money while playing.


Fair gaming – do the games give me a fair chance to win?


The best known system tool for ensuring that a casino offers fair games is eCogra; however, there are other providers that also offer these kinds of systems. You want to make sure that the casino is using a certified third-party control system to ensure that the games of chance you’re playing are actually based on chance and not on other types of metrics. Rigged games are ones that have been set up to pay out less than they claim to or ones that give some players a greater chance of winning than others.

The eCogra logo can often be found in the footer of the casino’s website, but not all casinos choose to display it. If you can’t see this logo, go to the FAQs and see if you can find information about random number generators. If there are no FAQs on the site, check out their terms and conditions or contact the casino’s support and ask how they ensure their games are safe.


Encrypted website – how is my information kept safe?


An SSL-encrypted website should be mandatory for any casino, and very few casinos operate without this or similar safe encryption features. Always keep in mind that you are giving the casino quite a bit of sensitive information, including your payment details. When you’re uploading and sending documents to verify your identity, you want to make sure that no unauthorized third-party has access to them. Site security, therefore, doesn’t only include the website itself but also what the casino does on the backend. You should always look into a casino’s data security. You’ll normally find information about this in their terms and conditions and their privacy policy. If in doubt, contact their support and ask for more detailed information.

Most trustworthy casinos have information about site security in the website footer, so simply scroll down and look for the logo of a well-known security system.


Gambling license – can I play at a casino from my country?


The gambling license a casino operates under will have a big impact on your security. Not all licenses are equally safe for players for the simple reason that they are issued by different gambling authorities that work in different ways and have different rules. The rules and regulations may be quite similar, but the way they are enforced is a different story entirely. For example, if a casino doesn’t comply with the regulations, some gambling authorities may just issue a fine while others may revoke the casino’s license outright. How often gambling authorities show up for an unscheduled inspection or control will also vary.

The biggest differences between a safe, high quality gambling license and one that isn’t as good will usually show up in the areas of fair gaming, dispute resolution and the rules and systems for identifying and handling problem gamblers (responsible gambling). If your country of residence has its own gambling authority, playing at casinos that are licensed by them will be the safest option for you. Other international licenses that can be trusted are issued by the Malta Gambling Authority and the Gibraltar Regulatory Authority. Curacao eGaming is getting better at protecting players whereas licenses from Panama and Costa Rica, for instance, are considered less safe. The worst option is obviously a casino with no license whatsoever.


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