The Development of Online Gambling in the Czech Republic

The modern history of gambling in the Czech Republic began to take shape only after 1989, that is, after the fall of the Iron Curtain. The development was very gradual and led to the first online casinos, such as In this article, we will take a closer look at the development and state of Czech online gambling. The Czech Republic was once considered the casino of Europe, where the number of gaming facilities per person was ten times higher than in Western Europe. This is also supported by history, for example, who wouldn’t know the very popular Baba Tutovka or the Lucky Ten draw. However, these times are long gone, and the Czech Republic has moved towards regulation of gambling and prevention of gambling addictions.

Development of online gambling games in the Czech Republic

What is Gambling in the Czech Republic?

Although online casinos for Czech players are currently very popular, it’s not the only form of gambling that has a tradition in the Czech Republic. In the 1990s, the symbols of gambling were smoke-filled arcades and round-the-clock bars with slot machines, usually entangled with the underworld mafia. However, gambling games in the Czech Republic are definitely more than that – for example, the Sportka lottery, betting on election results, or raffles at popular hunting balls.

Gambling at Present

While gambling was once mainly associated with the underbelly of society, according to the statistics of the Annual Report on Gambling, which is available here, in 2020 approximately 35-50% of adult residents in the Czech Republic played at least one gambling game. Therefore, every second or third Czech has experience with gambling. The most popular form of gambling games for Czech players is the lottery, which legally includes scratch tickets. As for online gambling, Czechs are still sceptical about online casinos. Despite the influence of the Covid 19 pandemic, they still prefer brick-and-mortar casinos and gaming venues, but the ratio decreases each year.

Lottery Act

The rules of gambling in the Czech Republic are determined by the Lottery Act, which is becoming increasingly strict. The last significant amendment was in 2017, a full 25 years after the issuance of the original act. For the first time, the law also regulates online gambling. The biggest novelty in online casinos was self-restricting measures – the player must have the option to set limits. For example, a maximum daily bet, maximum loss, the number of logins per week, and so on. At the same time, the player’s identity in online casinos must be verified, and the player must not be on the register of excluded players, which was established in the fall of 2020.

The 'Lottery Act' in the Czech Republic

In addition to Czech online casinos, the law also significantly regulates the physical branches of casinos and gaming venues – they must have 24-hour surveillance via cameras, alcohol cannot be served, opening hours and the appearance of the gaming venue are regulated. Furthermore, the operator must obtain not only a state permit but also one from the municipality, which has the right to completely ban gambling on its territory. Hence, “offline” gambling in the Czech Republic is decreasing, and players are moving to online casinos in the Czech Republic.

Surprisingly, there are many municipalities that have completely banned gambling on their territory, even though this means losing a significant portion of municipal revenue. Prague, for example, is among them. They aim to prevent problems with gambling addiction, which can indeed be very dangerous. Therefore, ensure that you always play with a clear head and for fun, and if you have problems with addiction, seek professional help. Treatment for gambling addiction can be outpatient and is usually very long, often lasting 200 days or more. It is really better to detect the risk of addiction early on, as treatment can indeed be very complicated and long. You should only gamble from the age of 21.

Conditions for Operating Online Gambling in the Czech Republic

  • Only companies with permission from the Ministry of Finance of the Czech Republic
  • They must properly pay taxes
  • They must display warnings about addiction on their websites
  • Blocking of websites and payments on accounts of illegal operators

Information System for Monitoring Gambling Games.

The Ministry of Finance has also appointed a supplier for the Information System for Monitoring Gambling Games. This system allows the exclusion of recipients of material need benefits, debtors in bankruptcy, gamblers with a court ban, and also people who request it themselves. Therefore, the Czech Republic is pursuing a path of prevention.

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