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Best online casinos in Norway (2022)
Vikings were known for being adventurous and thrill-seekers. They were a nation that liked to expand its prospects by exploring new lands. So, we aren’t surprised that they were avid gamblers, too, a tradition that holds on well with their descendants until today. Norway is always among the first names in the lists with the countries that gamble the most, even though some of the best online casinos Norway are technically banned from the country.
Currently, only two state-funded operators, Norsk Tipping and Norsk Rikstoto (for horse racing betting), are appropriately licensed by the local regulator. However, the Norwegian government doesn’t restrict remote gambling if the private operator has obtained a license (such as an MGA license) approved by a European Economic Area country or EU member-state. On top of that, there are no legal sanctions for players that choose to play in offshore casinos, even though they are officially excluded.
Top Norwegian online casinos
As we mentioned, though online gambling is heavily regulated in Norway, the fact that many international casinos accept Norwegian players is a reality. With so many available options for the players, it’s normal to get lost and be indecisive about which operator you should trust. To put you off this inconvenient place, we formed a list of the top Norwegian online casinos that treat players fairly and we hope you will find the brand that suits you among them.
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How we rate an online casino Norway offers
So, let’s take a closer look at the criteria we took into account to form the above list with the best online casinos Norway offers. Norway is a special market where players demand high-quality services from the operators, so a casino is suitable for Norwegian players if they satisfy the following criteria.
As long as you see the Malta Gambling Authority badge at the footer of a casino online Norway offers, you are good to go. Norway allows operators licensed by an EU member state or EEA country. Norwegians might prefer online casinos licensed in the nearby Nordic countries like Sweden and Denmark, yet their licenses refer only to local gambling rights. Still, some of them hold multiple licenses (MGA, UKGC), so Norwegians can play under the MGA license.
What happens with the international casinos? Well, typically, the Norwegian state has restricted them, but remote gambling is carefree for most of its part. Offshore casinos licensed in Curacao or elsewhere can host Norwegian players, too. This market is super-crowded and choosing among a pile of brands can cause a headache, especially to inexperienced players. In addition, not all brands are reliable, so make sure you select a trusted casino included in our list.
Welcome bonuses & free spins no deposit Norway
Most Norsk casinos will start you with a good ‘ole fashioned first deposit bonus. These come in many different forms, so it has to do with your preference as a player. Many casinos will only match your deposit by 100% up to 1000 kr , which is the standard you should expect. Others will also throw some free spins on top of that or present you with a wholesome package of 3-4 deposits. Since players from Norway gamble a lot, the market has tough competition, so casinos go above and beyond to attract players. No deposit bonuses are also a promotional tool that online casinos use. Whether it is free chips or free spins no deposit, Norway casinos know how to welcome new players or reward existing ones. Of course, other promos like reload bonuses or cashback offers are also available.
The welcome offer usually comes in a matched first deposit bonus, for example, 100% up to 20,000 NOK. Norsk casino free spins are also a typical part of a welcome package, while less frequent are cashback offers.
Mobile casino Norway
Norwegians just love playing on their phones. Whether it is a browser-based mobile casino Norway or a dedicated app, Norwegians will go for mobile over desktop. Nowadays, online casinos are designed with a mobile-first approach, so you can rest assured that no elements are lost when you transcend to the mobile screen. The majority of the casino games are perfectly optimized for mobile gaming, payments are made just as easy and sometimes special mobile bonuses might even be on the menu.
Websites optimized in Norwegian
Another advantage of Norwegian online casinos is that they are locally optimized. The website is usually offered in the local language, Norwegian Bokmål. It isn’t uncommon for international casinos to offer customer support in Norwegian, too. It gets even better when they have customer service running round the clock. Also, most Norwegian-friendly casinos allow you to make transactions in Norwegian kroner (NOK). Not only that but, when you visit the promotions page of online casinos Norway, usually the featured bonuses are presented with NOK values.
How do casinos in Norway operate
Regulation over the gambling issue in Norway goes back to 1902 when the Penal Code was passed and became the first step towards a public-sector monopoly. In 1927, the Totalizator Act introduced Norsk Rikstoto as the sole operator of horse betting activities. In 1992, the Gaming Act solidified the state monopoly regarding casinos in Norway by establishing Norsk Tipping, a public-funded company, which became responsible for the lotteries and games of chance.
Later in 2007, slot machines were deemed illegal throughout the country. In 2010, the Norwegian government took the most extreme action towards banning online gambling in international casinos by bringing forward the Payment Act. It would supposedly block the transactions via credit/debit cards to international online casinos, but, in reality, the Act didn’t have any effect until 2017.
In 2021, the Norwegian government decided to tighten up the grip even more for unlicensed online casinos by introducing a new Gambling Law that unified the existing Lottery Act, Gambling Act and Totalizator Act. The new law, once in effect, will make the life of any unlicensed operator difficult as it imposes stricter measures for detecting, reacting to and sanctioning law abuse.
The country’s gambling authority is called Lotteri-og stiftelsestilsynet and licenses only the two public companies, Norsk Tipping and Norsk Rikstoto, which offer gambling services. Technically, online gambling outside these two organizations has become restricted.
When it comes to land-based gambling-related activity, Norwegians can only play on the approximately 2,750 Interactive Video Terminals (IVTs), which are scattered within the country and offer lotto, slots, scratch, bingo, roulette and other casino games. These terminals are operated by Norsk Tipping and are licensed by the Norwegian Gambling Authority. They also come with specific limits on how much money a player can lose per day (NOK 400) and per month (NOK 2200).
Due to the terrible payouts, lack of game variety and restrictions posed, most Norwegian players resort to international online casinos to get some action going.
Essential info about the online casinos Norway offers
Winnings that derive from online gambling aren’t subjected to taxation unless acquired outside of Norway (via remote gambling) and exceed 10,000 NOK. In that case, the player is obliged to pay 28% tax on the earnings. How can you avoid this? If you play on an MGA licensed online casino in Norway, you could make separate payments of up to 10,000 NOK. If you are to withdraw from a Curacao licensed casino, you can try payments that offer anonymity, such as cryptocurrencies.
The legal gambling age in Norway is 18 years old . Specifically, according to the new Gambling Law, marketing gambling products and services to children is a criminal offence in Norway.
If you face a problem with gambling addiction, you can contact the ‘Hjelpelinjen’ (the helpline) by phone at 800 800 40, anonymous chat or email. You can also take their test for problematic gambling and discover if you are indeed within the spectrum.
Locally licensed Norwegian online casinos vs International casino sites
Although trustworthy, Norsk Tipping’s online products have many restraints that make them a non-suitable option for most players. For example, Kong Kasino, the casino vertical of Norsk Tipping, imposes spending limits of up to 2,000 NOK per day and 5,000 NOK per month plus a time limit that you set on how much time you spend on these games. On top of that, Norsk Tipping doesn’t allow gambling during night hours (03:00 – 07:00) for all of its products. No wonder players don’t fancy those restrictions and look abroad for an online casino Norwegian with fewer limitations and higher withdrawal thresholds.
Deposits & withdrawals at casinos in Norway
On the other hand, state-owned casinos have an advantage over international casinos as they can speed up the registration process using BankID or Vipps app . The first option refers to signing up with your unique BankID number and transferring money to and from your balance. The second option refers to the most popular mobile payment app in the country, which allows you to register at the casino by providing only your mobile number and a payment card.
International casinos aren’t compatible with those payments simply because Norwegian law forces local banks to deny transactions performed in casinos outside of Norway. Nevertheless, the best online casinos in Norway offer plenty of other payment methods like e-wallets (Skrill, Neteller, ecoPayz), prepaid vouchers (Paysafecard, Neosurf) or cryptocurrencies (Bitcoin, Ethereum, Litecoin). Scandi-friendly payments that are popular in the other countries of the region like Trustly or Zimpler are also available.
What the future holds for online casinos in Norway?
Unlike its Nordic neighbours, Sweden and Denmark, Norway doesn’t seem too eager to end the state monopoly and forward the privatization of online casinos Norwegian players access. The new unification law of 2021 doesn’t change much to the status of the casino market which remains grey in most of its part. The Norwegian Industry Association for Online Gaming (NBO) has widely criticized the new legislation, explaining that it generates a poor value of services and low customer protection standards.
They claim that the harsh regulations in the jurisdiction ultimately have the opposite effect of what was intended, as they actively ‘push’ players to the international casinos. In fact, more than 50% of Norwegian players opt for international gaming hubs instead of the Norsk Tipping casino.
NBO believes that a model closer to Denmark’s would be more effective. They think that the solution behind ending the state monopoly lies in increasing the tax rate for private operators to 15%. Bringing in locally licensed operators along with an alternative dispute resolution party could lead more than 90% of Norwegian players to legitimate operators and reduce the percentage of problem gamblers in the country.