Kentucky Online Casinos
There are no real money online casinos in Kentucky at present, although as you’ll find below, there are legal ways for Kentuckians to play their favorite casino games online.
The recent legalization of sports betting, including online sports betting, might indicate the possibility of Kentucky expanding other forms of online gambling. There is no present push to do so, but we’ll keep you informed here should anything change.
Meanwhile, read on to learn everything you need to know about Kentucky online casinos, including information about what is presently available and what may come in the future.
Are online casinos legal in Kentucky?
No, real-money online casinos are not currently legal in Kentucky. There are other legal ways to gamble online in the state, including sports betting, horse race wagering, and purchasing Kentucky Lottery tickets. But online casinos for real money are not allowed to operate in the Bluegrass State.
That said, you can legally play casino games online in Kentucky on social and sweepstakes sites. In some cases, these sites even yield chances to win real cash prizes.
An online search may yield examples of real money online casinos purporting to serve Kentucky players, but these sites pose an inordinate risk. They operate “offshore” (outside the U.S.) and do not recognize U.S. or Kentucky gambling laws.
Since these sites are not regulated in Kentucky, if you run into problems regarding the safety of your funds or personal information, or encounter any other issues with game integrity, you have no legal recourse. We strongly recommend you steer clear of these questionable sites.
Potential Kentucky online casino apps
Without any online casino legislation in place, we can only speculate about which online casino apps could be on the way to Kentucky in the future. However, Kentucky’s position in the middle of the pack in terms of state population means that any legalization would certainly draw attention from the biggest and best online casinos in the game.
If Kentucky were to legalize online casinos, it is safe to say the following sites would likely seek to launch in KY. Note that all five of these companies are likely to launch online sportsbooks in KY as well, and doing so will increase the likelihood they will seek to add the online casino option for players should the possibility arise.
BetMGM Casino Kentucky
BetMGM Casino is one of the top online casinos in the country. It represents casino giant MGM Resorts as its online casino brand.
BetMGM is notable for its wide selection of games. There are hundreds of slot titles on the app, along with dozens of table games, virtual sports, and video poker options. BetMGM even has a roster of exclusive games that you cannot find anywhere else.
Best of all, your play on BetMGM is eligible to earn points in the MGM Rewards Program. Without ever leaving your house, you can be racking up comps and other benefits at MGM locations around the globe.
Caesars Casino Kentucky
Caesars Casino is one of the top casino sites you can find, and is part of the global gambling giant Caesars Entertainment.
One of the first things you’ll notice is how beautifully rendered the games are at Caesars Casino. Each slot is a feast for the eyes and ears, and its table games are sharp and crisp.
Caesars is also an excellent place for promotions and bonuses. If you like to get a little something extra when you play, the rolling bonus offers and automatic membership in the Caesars Rewards Program will keep you covered.
BetRivers Casino Kentucky
BetRivers Casino may or may not be a familiar name to you. The app is the online casino brand for Rush Street Interactive, which owns a handful of casinos in the Midwest and New England. However, the app’s relative obscurity to you should not deter you from exploring the options it offers.
For one thing, BetRivers Casino has tremendous variety. Along with the standard rack of slot titles, there are more than a dozen table games, video poker games, and Slingo options.
BetRivers Casino also offers an unusual feature in the form of slot tournaments. Distinct from almost every other online casino, BetRivers lets you compete with other gamblers for prizes in daily slot competitions. Both the money and the pride from winning a slot tournament are positives you rarely find elsewhere.
DraftKings Casino Kentucky
DraftKings may be a name that you know, thanks to the company’s long history of providing daily fantasy sports contests in Kentucky. However, DraftKings Casino is worth a look in its own right.
DraftKings Casino has a tremendous number of games available. Its list of slot titles expands almost endlessly down the page.
However, where DraftKings Casino really shines is with its table game selection. The site offers more table games to play than any other major online casino. Just to give you an idea, there are more than 30 blackjack variants alone, and blackjack is not the only game you can play. DraftKings is far more than just a DFS and sports betting provider now.
FanDuel Casino Kentucky
FanDuel Casino is, like its archrival DraftKings, one of the biggest success stories for up-and-coming gaming providers in recent years. It has expanded beyond its pioneering roots in daily fantasy sports to become a full-fledged top online iGaming company.
Part of the reason FanDuel has risen to the top is because of its tremendous attention to making the navigation experience on its app a smooth one. The FanDuel Sportsbook is top-notch because it’s easy to find your way around, and the FanDuel Casino shares the same quality. The numerous sliders and its search function mean that you’re only a button press or two away from your favorite game at all times.
FanDuel also offers many promotions and offers to improve your bottom line. Notably, there is a five-digit jackpot that must be won every single day, and there’s no reason that you cannot be the recipient.
Social and sweepstakes sites in Kentucky
Instead of discussing what might happen in Kentucky with regard to online casinos, let’s talk about what you can actually play right now. At present, there are a number of social and sweepstakes sites where Kentuckians can enjoy online casino games today.
All of these sites are completely legal to play. They use a unique business model to comply with Kentucky sweepstakes laws. The sites use virtual currencies for their games rather than real money. However, in some cases, the sites offer chances to redeem your winnings for real cash prizes.
A purchase is never required to play the games at these social and sweepstakes sites. They are legitimate and a great way to find some casino-like action where you otherwise would not be able to do so.
Here’s a quick rundown of the best social and sweepstakes sites currently available in Kentucky.
- Pulsz — 300+ slots, table games
- Chumba Casino — 70+ slots, table games
- Luckyland Slots — 100+ slots
- Funzpoints — 25+ slots
- WOW Vegas — 300+ slots, table games
- Global Poker — poker (ring games, sit-and-go’s, multi-table tournaments)
As you can see, most of these sites feature a wide selection of slots, with some also adding favorite table games like blackjack, roulette, baccarat and video poker. The Global Poker site is unique among the sites in that it features traditional player-versus-player poker, offering No-Limit Texas Hold’em, Pot-Limit Omaha, and other variants.
Nearest retail casinos to Kentucky
Several states bordering Kentucky are home to casino properties, which means Kentuckians willing to travel can enjoy live casino action without too much trouble. In fact, in many cases, these retail casinos are located just over the KY border.
Moving from west to east, the closest casino locations to Kentucky are:
- Century Casino Cape Girardeau (Cape Girardeau, Missouri)
- Harrah’s Metropolis (Metropolis, Illinois)
- Caesars Southern Indiana (Elizabeth, Indiana)
- Belterra Casino Resort (Florence, Indiana)
- Grand Victoria Casino & Resort (Rising Sun, Indiana)
- Hollywood Casino & Hotel Lawrenceburg (Lawrenceburg, Indiana)
- Hard Rock Casino Cincinnati (Cincinnati, Ohio)
- Mardi Gras Casino Resort (Cross Lanes, West Virginia)
As you may have gathered, most of the venues are located along the northern border of Kentucky. Kentucky’s neighbor to the south, Tennessee, is equally bereft of casino properties.
History of online gambling in Kentucky
It’s an exciting time for online gambling in Kentucky. Thanks to the passage of HB 551 in March 2023, Kentuckians will be able to bet on sporting events with their mobile devices and computers by the end of 2023. In fact, this is only the latest example of Kentucky expanding legal online gambling options.
The earliest bit of legal online gambling came to the state as part of nationwide legalization. Online horse betting became legal in Kentucky in 2000 when the federal government added an amendment to the Interstate Horseracing Act to allow “electronic” wagering. Since then, sites like TVG and TwinSpires have been operating freely in the Bluegrass State.
By the late 2000s, daily fantasy sports sites started to become popular across the country including in Kentucky. While KY lawmakers have discussed the possibility of legalizing DFS sites, no legislation has ever passed to do so. That said, there is no law prohibiting DFS, either. That means Kentucky remains like many states where it is fine to play DFS sites.
Finally, Kentucky took its most progressive step for online gambling in 2013 by allowing a new online keno game and the online purchase of Kentucky Lottery tickets. Keno launched soon after, with online lottery sales starting a little later in 2016. Today Kentucky is one of only 10 states (plus Washington D.C.) that allows online lottery play.
Relatively speaking, then, KY has more online gambling options than most states, which perhaps at least lays a foundation for further expansion, including Kentucky online casinos.
FAQ about Kentucky online casinos
Probably not, although it could happen. There are no laws in the Kentucky Revised Statutes to permit the introduction of legal online casino sites, and the most recent session of the Kentucky General Assembly did not bring forth any new legislation to that effect. That said, the introduction of online sports betting in Kentucky in 2023 will bring new information for legislators to consider, which could one day encourage other forms of online gambling expansion.
No, there are no commercial casinos operating legally in Kentucky. The state’s primary live gambling venues are its horse racetracks, off-track betting parlors, and historical horse racing facilities.
No, it is unlikely that KY will be legalizing retail casinos in the near future, despite there being plenty of casinos in states near Kentucky. The most recent session of the Kentucky General Assembly ended without any bill or motion to make commercial casinos legal. Nor will KY have any tribal casinos, as there are no federally-recognized Native American tribes in the Commonwealth. If KY were to introduce casinos, they would likely arrive as extensions to the existing racetracks, creating “racinos.” There is no present push to make that happen, however.
As discussed above, while there are no online casinos that pay real money available, those in Kentucky can legally play casino games online at social and sweepstakes sites. These sites are safe and legal to play on, subject to and operating within federal and state laws.
You must be at least 18 years old to wager on horse races, place sports bets, purchase Kentucky Lottery tickets or play games at social and sweepstakes sites in Kentucky.