Offshore Online Casinos in Canada – Are They Safe?
There are now several online casinos available to Canadian bettors, but many of these are offshore casinos.
What are offshore online casinos?
OK, so first things first. What is an offshore online casino? Good question, to which the answer is as follows: offshore casinos are international casinos not registered in Canada.
In other words, these are online casinos that are based in other countries but are available to be used by Canadian players. Basically, we’re talking about a casino that may be set up somewhere that has favourable gambling laws, such as Malta, but targets an international market.
Offshore online casinos and offshore online gambling sites in general, such as sportsbooks, are now both normal and popular, so much so that there are millions of citizens across many countries using offshore casinos to place bets. This is now commonplace in the world of online gambling.
There are many such examples of offshore casinos that can be used by Canadian bettors; some are extremely popular, some less so.
What offshore online casinos are there?
If you’re interested in online casino gambling, you probably already know some offshore casinos that can be used in Canada.
The most popular and arguably the best offshore casino available in Canada is Leo Vegas. This particular online casino is tried, trusted, safe and secure. Holding several licenses, including from the reputable and internationally recognized Malta Gaming Authority, Leo Vegas provides Canadians with a whole host of casino games, live dealer games, slots and jackpots.
Casumo is another hugely popular offshore casino that can safely be used by Canadian casino players, while other options include sites such as Jackpot City and Spin Away and Gate777, both of which hold official licenses and provide a safe and secure space for online casino players to deposit, play games and withdraw their funds.
Here is a full breakdown of offshore casinos that are currently available in Canada:
- Leo Vegas
- Bob Casino
- Jackpot Village
- Royal Vegas Online Casino
The casinos listed above are all known for operating as offshore casinos that cater to a Canadian audience. Some are more popular than others, that’s for sure, but all have been known to provide casino offerings to players on Canadian shores.
Are offshore casinos safe?
There is both a simple and straightforward answer to this question, and that’s yes. For the most part, betting with offshore casinos as a Canadian is extremely safe. As long as you choose a reputable, well-known offshore casino that has a proper website, then you have little to worry about.
Many offshore casinos that can be used specifically cater to the Canadian market. They are safe and secure. We’re talking about legitimate online casinos that have been in operation for some time.
Thousands and thousands of Canadian players use offshore casinos like Leo Vegas every day. They deposit, withdraw and play a plethora of casino games without issue.
There is sometimes a misconception about offshore casinos. Many people think that the notion of betting with an offshore casino is unsafe, but this is not true. Any reputable offshore casino will hold a proper license from a regulatory body that awards gambling licenses to online casinos that target an international market, such as Canada.
Offshore casinos may even obtain a license from the Kahnawake Gaming Commission, which is of course Canadian. One such example is Jackpot City Casino, which is a popular option for Canadian casino players and has been since 1998.
You will find that most offshore casinos are based in locations that have typically favourable laws for gambling operators, but this does not make them unsafe. Such locations include the likes of Malta, Costa Rica and Curacao.
The Malta Gaming Authority is arguably the biggest licensee of offshore casinos. It provides gaming licenses to popular, well-used offshore online casinos such as Leo Vegas and Casumo. Another example of an offshore casino license would be that of Gaming Curacao, which provides a license to Spin Away, a casino website that has been used by Canadians since 2018.
Licenses don’t lie
At the end of the day, licensing says a lot. The bottom line as far as licensing is concerned is that if an offshore casino can clearly show, usually at the bottom of each page on their website, that they have a license from a respected and reputable gambling authority, then players have nothing much to worry about.
If an offshore online casino does hold a valid license from a recognized body such as the Malta Gaming Authority, then it shows that it meets certain standards, which means that players can enjoy the casino without having to worry about being scammed.
However, if an offshore casino does not clearly show that it has a license, then you should avoid using its services. Every reputable offshore casino will clearly state that it has a license, so if you come across one that doesn’t, then you know something is wrong.
The legality of offshore online casinos
From a legal standpoint, offshore casinos fall into murky waters. There are lots of countries, one of which is certainly Canada, that do not really want their citizens sending business the way of offshore online casinos.
However, whether a country like Canada ideally wants its citizens gambling in this way or not, there is nothing illegal about using an offshore casino.
To be honest, in Canada, everything in this sense is rather lenient. Lots of offshore casinos target the Canadian market, and there is quite literally a glut of Canadian gamblers using offshore online casinos every single day.
From a bettor’s point of view, it’s rather refreshing to know that the Canadian government seemingly does not crack down on players using offshore casinos. In fact, there has never been a case where a citizen was prosecuted
To summarize this section, though some of the guidelines or language from the Canadian government on this subject can be a little misleading and even confusing, there are no laws stating that it is illegal for Canadian bettors to use offshore online casinos, and thus they are free to do just that.
Offshore online casinos pros and cons
There are, of course, certain pros and cons to offshore online casinos. These are as follows:
Pros of offshore online casinos
- If you’re living somewhere like Canada, then there are more online casino options if you look offshore.
- Offshore online casinos offer more choices in terms of casino games, poker, slots, jackpots and live dealer games.
- There are typically lots of payment options offered by offshore online casinos.
- Some offshore online casinos now accept cryptocurrencies like Bitcoins for deposits and withdrawals.
Cons of offshore online casinos
- There will always be scam sites that pop up, so you do need to check for licensing, which can sometimes be slightly irritating.
- Many offshore online casinos don’t support some of the more popular payment methods available to Canadians, though not all.
- There are some offshore online casinos that aren’t ideal for small-stakes players, as the minimum deposits can be quite high.
- Some offshore online casinos have a minimum withdrawal amount, again, which isn’t great for small-stakes players.
Can you use online casinos in Canada?
Yes, any Canadian citizen of legal gambling age, which is currently 18 or 19 depending on the province of residence, can use an online casino. Many casinos require you to provide legal documentation when signing up, so you won’t be able to register unless you can prove your age and the fact that you’re a Canadian citizen.
What licenses do offshore casinos have?
This depends on the casino. Many offshore casinos that are available to Canadians are licensed and regulated by the trusted Malta Gaming Authority. If an offshore casino is licensed by the Malta Gaming Authority, then you know its legit, that’s for sure.
Can you use Canadian dollars with an offshore casino?
Yes, as long as the casino caters to a Canadian audience and is available to be used in Canada, then you can absolutely make deposits and withdrawals using Canadian dollars.
Do offshore casinos charge fees to Canadian players?
The answer is almost always no. In the vast majority of cases, reputable offshore casinos will not charge fees for depositing or withdrawing. In some rare cases, an offshore casino will charge a small processing fee, but this is not common practice.
At some offshore casinos, certain payment methods may require you to pay a small processing fee, but in most cases, there will be methods that do not require a processing fee.
Can you trust offshore online casinos?
In general, the answer is yes, though you should always proceed with caution. Check that the casein you’re about to play with is a reputable offshore casino, such as Leo Vegas. Look for a license too. If an online casino is trustworthy, it will state which license it has. If an offshore casino doesn’t do that, then your best bet is to avoid it.
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