Best Online Casinos in Ohio December 2023
|Online Casinos · OH Casinos|
While Ohio’s online sports bettors are finally getting to wager online, casinos haven’t gotten the same treatment in the state. However, as the tide is turning for bettors looking to legally wager on sports online, online casinos might be just around the corner.
Ohio has four casinos and seven racinos offering a myriad of casino favorites including slots and table games, but online casinos (also known as iGaming) are limited to the sweepstakes and social varieties that don’t use real money.
Until iGaming and online casinos are formally legalized in Ohio, users don’t have any online options for casino gaming. Let’s break down the situation regarding online casinos in Ohio and what you can bet on now, as well as look to the future:
BEST ONLINE CASINOS IN OHIO
Available in: MI, NJ, PA
Available in: NJ, PA, MI, WV
Available in: NJ
Available in: PA
Updated on : 12/09/2023
Favorites like BetMGM, FanDuel or Caesars Casino won’t be found online in Ohio just yet, but it’s hoped that the recent legalization of online sports betting will mean that online casinos are close behind. At the moment, the only options for betting on casino games in Ohio are either in-person options or options where you don’t play for real money, like sweepstakes and social casinos. Here is a breakdown of the casinos most likely to apply for an Ohio license:
MGM Northfield Park is a racino at, you guessed it, the Northfield Park Race Course. With that in mind, it’s a no-brainer that this betting behemoth would be among the first to offer an online casino in Ohio. They’ve already forged a well-established relationship with the Ohio Casino Control Commission, so it wouldn’t be a stretch to convince the regulators to grant BetMGM a casino license in the Buckeye State.
FanDuel continues to compete with DraftKings as the #1 online betting provider in the country in terms of market share. Diversification is the name of the game, and FanDuel knows full well that offering casino betting is another way to pull in revenue while keeping casino gaming legal.
Hard Rock Casino
Hard Rock Casino is looking for another entry into the online betting market after a failed attempt to offer sports wagering in Florida. Hard Rock has one casino property in Cincinnati, with another bought out and under new ownership at MGM Northfield. Still, Hard Rock may likely be entering the market, with bonus codes for lucrative welcome offers, as soon as Ohio casinos go online.
Hollywood Casino isn’t one of the largest iGaming and online casino brands in the country, but the infrastructure is in place, and they’ll live with an online platform in Pennsylvania. As Hollywood Casino has a number of physical locations in Ohio, it’s a short jump to them offering an online version of their casino to eligible bettors in the state.
ARE ONLINE CASINOS LEGAL IN OHIO?
Currently, the answer is no: only retail, in-person casinos are legally recognized in Ohio. This means that casinos offering real money, online play to Ohio residents are so-called offshore casinos, which aren’t technically licensed in the state and can’t be recommended.
SWEEPSTAKES AND SOCIAL CASINOS IN OHIO
Sweepstakes and social casinos fall into a bit of a legal gray area because they don’t pay out real money, and often are either just for fun, or reward players through other means of payment like crypto or credits.
At VegasInsider, we only promote regulated, legal casino brands and slot apps. The following are not strictly regulated, but you’re going to see them on the internet anyway. Take a look, but if you want safe, legal betting for real money, stick to our recommended brands.
- Chumba Casino: Like many sweepstakes and social casinos offering “payouts”, Chumba Casino offers users the ability to win “Gold Coin” credits and entrance into other sweepstakes. Users then convert those credits into cash, but the wagering requirements pale in comparison to what you’d find at a legal, regulated iGaming website.
- Pulsz: Pulsz is a bit more like a strict “social” casino, because none of the prizes convert to cash. Users earn credits for wins like they would on any casino, real money or not, then can use those points to redeem gift cards and other prizes.
- Funzpoints: This sweepstakes model gets around legal issues by requiring users to pay for a subscription service before playing social casino games and online slots. Then, once a user has accrued enough points, they can enter to win sweepstakes prizes.
Again, we mention this information because it’s always better to go for the legal, regulated options. The sites mentioned above aren’t going to offer you the same value as a legit online casino with the backing of a state’s gambling regulators, nor are they as secure. Go with one of our preferred providers if you want the real bang for your buck.
WHEN WILL ONLINE CASINOS BECOME LEGAL IN OHIO?
In 2021, lawmakers in Ohio passed a bill to legalize online sports betting in the state, effective January 1, 2023. We’ve seen this before: once a state gets a taste for the revenue from taxing legal wagering, or once they see neighboring states doing so, they tend to change their tune regarding other forms of legal betting.
Ohio itself is an example of this, as they’ve had legal in-person casinos since 2009, and saw the value in legalizing and taxing online betting sites after watching neighbors Indiana and Pennsylvania raking in the dough from legal wagering. It’s not a certainty, but it’s more than likely that Ohio, which already has in-person casino gaming, would take the slots, tables and wheels online.
OHIO GAMBLING LAWS
Currently, a few forms of gambling are legal in Ohio:
- Online sportsbooks
- In-person casinos and racinos
- Horse racing
Users can bet on horses online and visit in-person casinos for the full scope of games including table games like roulette and craps, blackjack, slots, and more. Online sportsbooks will be live in Ohio starting January 1st, 2023, but online casinos are not licensed or regulated in Ohio (yet).
HOW WE CHOOSE THE BEST OHIO ONLINE CASINOS
? SAFETY OF OHIO ONLINE CASINOS
When you're looking to bet at an online casino, you're going to want to look for legal options with industry-standard encryptions and responsible gambling options. All three of these are the hallmark of an iGaming site worth its salt, and they're tantamount to a solid gaming experience. That's why we at VegasInsider only promote regulated casinos-- not offshore sites that are unreliable at best and at worst, could head for the hills with your money in tow.
? CUSTOMER SERVICE OPTIONS
The next most important thing for any quality online casino is to offer a good selection of customer service options. When you're playing outside of business hours and have a technical issue or even a simple question, having chat representatives right at your fingertips is always the best option. That's why we recommend top casino websites and apps that have 24/7 Live Chat at best and at the least, a phone option for talking to a live human.
? GAME SELECTION AT OHIO ONLINE CASINOS
Ohio in-person casinos boast everything you’d expect from a modern casino. It’s in the owner’s interest to ensure that “Wow!” factor when a prospective bettor steps onto the floor, itself a sensation that some of us can relate to.
You know the feeling of walking into a pleasantly chaotic casino with a ton of bettors vying for that big win? Ohio casinos have that in spades. We’re hoping that Ohio goes live with online casinos soon, because it’s a great way to legally bet on favorites for real money without leaving the house. However, the in-person experience is hard to beat, especially when you can play:
Slots are a big moneymaker for casinos, and they’re also a great way for new bettors to get their feet wet and try out some engaging, colorful slot games with relatively simple rules. If you’re not ready for sitting at a table game just yet, or if you’re looking to stretch your gambling dollar, slots can be a great option.
You can look for these popular slots at Ohio casinos:
- Blood Suckers™
- Zeus Lightning™
It’s a solid idea to look for slots with a good RTP, or “return to player”. However, slots that are regulated and licensed, including at in-person casinos and online (whenever those go live in OH) will always be the best choice when it comes to fairness, safety, and legality.
? TABLE GAMES
Table games are the best way to get the full casino experience. Sitting at a table with your fellow gamblers as a dealer slings you cards, chips, or dice as the case may be. If you’ve ever wanted to feel like an international spy with massive sex appeal, you’d be hard pressed to find a better roleplaying experience than sitting at a casino table.
At a number of retail casinos in Ohio, you can find some of the top table games out there, and when online casinos do go live, it’s expected that the digital versions will be almost as good:
- Roulette: Spin the wheel and make your pick: red or black, or a specific pocket. In roulette, the dealer is more accurately referred to as the French term croupier.
- Blackjack: You’re probably familiar with Blackjack, but in case you aren’t: each card has a point value, and you and the dealer are both competing to get to 21 points. Closest one wins, and if you go over, you bust, losing the bet.
- Baccarat: Baccarat is an older and a bit more complex form of point-racking card game like Blackjack. Each card has a point value, and you’re competing with the dealer to win.
- Poker: In poker, you’re attempting to make various combinations like a Full House, a Straight, a Flush, and more to have the most dominant hand.
- Craps: Online casino websites don’t often have craps as a featured game, which hasn’t really been explained- some experts think it’s because the experience of playing craps in-person so pales in comparison to online play that websites and apps haven’t decided to spend the money developing online craps. Still, it’s a fun game involving combinations of dice rolls, and you’re aiming for a 7 or an 11 (to oversimplify things).
- Video Poker: While not explicitly a table game, if you’ve been to a casino, you get the picture. These video terminals feature a ton of poker games like Jacks or Better, Deuces Wild, and more. Sitting at the old CRT-style touchscreens at an Ohio casino is one thing, but to be frank, online casinos do video poker better than their in-person counterparts.
? LIVE DEALER GAMES
While obviously every in-person casino game with a dealer is going to feature a live human being (until the robots take over), Live Dealer games are worth mentioning. They’re a true sign of the modernization of the casino industry, and when Ohio goes online with iGaming and casino apps, Live Dealer games are sure to feature.
It’s as it sounds: you’ve got a live stream of a dealer that is calling the shots (often with real cards) while you’re playing right from your phone or home computer. If you’re looking for a near-perfect recreation of the casino experience, throw on some crowd noise and play a Live Dealer table game for real money!
SPORTS BETTING IN OHIO
As part of the law signed by Governor Mike DeWine in 2021, Ohio bettors will have access to the best online sports betting sites covering all their favorite teams. We'll keep you up-to-date on what's available in Ohio!
LAND BASED (RETAIL) CASINOS & RACINOS IN OHIO
Ohio is unique in that their in-person casinos and racinos are not tribally run, and instead are run by the OCCC, the Ohio Casino Control Commission. If you’re looking to bet on craps, roulette, blackjack, poker, slots, and more, you’ll have to visit one of eleven locations: four standalone casinos or seven racinos.
There are five casino properties in Ohio owned by a few nationally-recognized casino chains:
- Horseshoe Casino in Cincinnati; 1000 Broadway St, Cincinnati, 45202
- Hollywood Casino Columbus; 200 Georgesvilles Rd, Columbus, 43228
- Hollywood Casino Toledo; 1968 Miami St, Toledo, 43605
- JACK Casino Cleveland; 100 Public Sq, Cleveland, 44113
- Hard Rock Casino Cincinnati; 1000 Broadway St, Cincinnati, OH 45202
Ohio also has racinos, which is a clever portmanteau of “racing” and “casino” and offers, you guessed it, horse racing betting as well as a stocked floor of casino games and card tables. The first Ohio casinos became legalized in 2009, making this state a late-bloomer in terms of legal gambling. The first casinos to actually open for business, however, weren’t live until 2012.
An interesting caveat about casinos in Ohio: as they are state-sanctioned rather than run by tribal authorities on reservation land, they can be in high-density areas like Cincinatti or Cleveland rather than tucked away in small, barely-incorporated towns.
There are seven racinos in Ohio, some of which are owned by big names in the casino industry:
- Belterra Park in Cincinatti; 6301 Kellogg Rd, Cincinnati 45230
- JACK Thistledown Racino; 21505 Emery Rd, North Randall, 44128
- Scioto Downs; 6000 S High St, Columbus, 43207
- Miami Valley Gaming in Lebanon; 6000 OH-3, Lebanon, 45036
- Hollywood Gaming at Dayton Raceway; 777 Hollywood Blvd, Dayton, 45414
- Hollywood Gaming at Mahoning Valley Race Course; 655 N Canfield Niles Rd, Youngstown, 44515
- MGM Northfield Park; 10777 Northfield Rd, Northfield, 44067
OHIO ONLINE CASINOS FAQ
WHAT ONLINE CASINOS CAN I PLAY IN OHIO?
When casinos do finally go online in Ohio (not legal yet), you can expect big names like BetMGM Casino, FanDuel Casino and more to enter the market.
WHAT IS THE MOST TRUSTED ONLINE CASINO?
You can be sure that any of the online casinos that we review on VegasInsider.com are trusted and use industry standard encryption techniques to keep their users and their identities safe. We also don't promote any online casinos that don't offer Responsible Gambling options.
HOW OLD DO YOU HAVE TO BE TO GAMBLE ONLINE IN OHIO?
For nearly all the casino apps we review, the minimum age to participate is 21+. There are some small exceptions, but it's expected that online casino games in particular will be restricted to users under the age of 21.
WHAT IS THE BEST ONLINE CASINO FOR WINNING MONEY?
In short, if an online casino claims to pay out more than other casinos, they're probably lying to you. Most online casinos have comparable winrates, but if you want to get the best bang for your buck, read our reviews and choose preferred sites with slots that have a good RTP or 'return to player'.