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Top casinos in South Africa – Online Casinos & Gambling Regulations



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Finding the best Afrikaans casino online

The Internet is full of gambling sites, but not all of them will accept SA players, allow players to use ZAR or play in Afrikaans. Therefore, it’s always good to have a bit of a game plan before diving into a new South Africa casino online. Knowing what you’re looking for in a casino is an excellent first step. Do you want a massive welcome bonus? Are jackpot slots your main focus, or are you a high-stakes live casino player?

There’s something out there for everyone, and every gaming site has its own style and concept. But, we all recognize an online casino when we see one, and they all have some essential things in common that define the overall quality of their product. The checklist below includes some of the things you might want to consider when choosing a casino to play at.

  • Can you play with ZAR as a currency, and is the site available in other SA languages?
  • Does the site accept players from South Africa?
  • Are South Africans able to participate in promotions and offers?
  • Can you easily navigate the site on your preferred device?
  • Does the casino offer the kind of games you’re planning to play?
  • What license are they using? Do they have certifications of fairness?

It may seem tricky to track down the best online casinos in South Africa, but the easiest way to find them is by checking out the casino reviews here at GoodLuckMate. If you don’t want to invest a lot of time finding the answers to the questions in our checklist yourself, we’ve already supplied you with all the answers you’ll need in our reviews!

Gambling regulation – 2004 National Gambling Act

There’s always been some opposition towards gambling in SA, and in 1994, all forms of gambling were banned. Today, the National Gambling Board of South Africa (NGB) follows the 2004 National Gambling Act, which allows for a slightly more open market, at least when it comes to sports betting. For sports bettors, there are operators licensed by the NGB that offer odds both online and locally, and the lottery continues to be an incredibly popular way to gamble as well.

According to the local law, operating or playing at a South African casino online is illegal, even if the operator is located outside the country’s borders. Players are, however, still able to sign up and play. 

If you do decide to gamble online we strongly recommend that, at the very least, you use a VPN and some form of anonymous payment method. You will be engaging in illegal activity, so a little discretion is a wise move, even though casinos rather than players are generally the ones authorities target. But, even as a player, you could still be fined for engaging in these activities.

Casino in South Africa

Although the market for locally licensed online casinos in South Africa is limited, there are several land-based casinos throughout the country. The NGB has licensed these brick-and-mortar gambling venues, and the largest one, which is located in Cape Town, offers over 2000 different slots and table games to its visitors.

Although these land-based venues offer casino games, they do require you to be physically present to play, and depending on the venue, there may be relatively few, if any, promotions to take part in. Those who want to play from the comfort of their own homes and take part in bonuses and campaigns should pick one of the best casinos online in South Africa that we’ve collected here at GoodLuckMate.

Nerijus Grenda
Nerijus GrendaUpdated: 02 Jun 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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