Not so long ago, Turkey could brag of a truly booming gambling scene. Home to 80 land-based casinos where more than 20,000 people made their living, it generated over a billion dollars revenue yearly.
What began in 1990 with the legalizing of games of chance …
… has suddenly turned into a nightmare for the industry: already in1996 the Government started to impose multiple restrictions across the brick-and-mortar sector, and in 1998 all casinos ceased their operation due to the national ban of gambling.
One of the most visited tourist destinations, Turkey was no longer able to offer their guests high-class jackpot Vegas entertainment. Moreover, Turks themselves were forced to travel to Northern Cyprus quickly dubbed as the Turkish City of Lights.
A witness of many epic battles throughout its rich history, this Middle East country found itself right in the center of the unexpected course of events: mushrooming underground casinos have replaced their legal counterparts in order to meet the needs of numerous punters.
The same thing happened …
… to the iGaming market. Banned in 2006, legal online gambling platforms just made room for flourishing unlawful activities. Has the restrictive policy been successful?
Well, it’s certainly a matter of perspective but one point is exceedingly clear:
Turks haven't stopped gambling. Instead, they simply started looking towards international websites licensed in reputable jurisdictions such as Sweden, the UK or Malta, to name just a few.
Despite continuous efforts of the Turkish Government to prevent players from accessing offshore online casinos by blocking IP addresses and re-directing their URLs to warning pages, many people still manage to find a way to spin the reels of the latest video slots or the roulette wheel in one of the luxurious rooms of Live casinos.
Online Gambling Laws in Turkey
For the sake of objectivity, it’s worth mentioning that Turkey’s laws still allow some gambling activities, although none of them has nothing to do with classic casino fun. Namely, there are three legal sectors:
When it comes to poker, blackjack, baccarat, as well as other card and dice games, they all fall within the definition of gambling set by the Turkish Criminal code, hence prohibited as such. In their turn, slot machines and roulette are seen as special forms of gambling and banned under the Law Regarding Roulette, Pinball and Gaming Machines.
According to the legislation …
… the term "online" covers internet, mobile phones, interactive TV and similar electronic platforms, therefore virtual sphere is also subject to the Electronic Communications Law, the Law Regarding Internet Broadcasting and Combatting Criminal Offences Committed via Internet Broadcasting, and the Law on Prevention of Laundering Proceeds of Crime.
In addition to that, both the Turkish Criminal Code and Misdemeanors Law provide for various sanctions for participants in gambling activities and confiscation procedure for the operators of illegal casinos.
Getting Started with Turkish Online Casino Action
In line with the above, it’s not hard to figure out that punters who live in Turkey can gamble online taking certain precautions.
In fact, that’s exactly what they are already doing or otherwise, how one can explain a large number of web-based venues that offer their services in Turkish and accept Turkish Lira?
Given this challenging environment, it is essential to stick with credible websites licensed in strong jurisdictions. Illicit places should be avoided at any costs – do not let over-attractive welcome packages to lead you into a trap set by rough casinos.
Take your time, read the reviews below, and decide which particular site meets all your requirements. As already mentioned, players who reside in Turkey are spoilt for choice: a bunch of top-tier software providers, hundreds of variously-themed slots stuffed with innovative features, and countless variants of popular table games to pick from.