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Sweden is a country that has had strict gambling rules for many years, in a conscious effort to protect players from unhealthy gambling habits, scams and more, and there is a monopoly that restricts who can offer gambling opportunities in Sweden. Online gambling is allowed and can be done via the Svenska Spel website, or at an online casino located in another country. Online gambling in Sweden is regulated by the Swedish Gambling Authority.
Top Swedish Casinos
Whether you gamble on a computer or in one of the many mobile casino apps that casinos are continuously coming out with, it is extremely important to choose a trustworthy gambling site that meets expectations. For Swedes, this becomes even more important as many online casinos chose not to get a Swedish gambling licence after new rules were introduced in 2019, simply because their sites didn’t meet the requirements.
As a result, the selection of trustworthy Swedish casino sites is a bit smaller than it was a few years back, but don’t let this get you down! Our list of casinos only contain sites that are licensed by the Swedish Gambling Authority, and it saves you the trouble of having to look for yourself.
Is Gambling Legal in Sweden
Yes, gambling is legal in Sweden (including online gambling), but it is also heavily regulated. It used to affect mostly casinos located in Sweden and there were many gray areas when it came to playing casino games on the internet. However, new laws came into effect in January 2019, which changed how online casinos in Sweden operate.
The result was that foreign casino sites can now only operate in Sweden if they have a Swedish gambling licence and if they comply with a long list of requirements, in a new effort to regulate the online casino industry.
All the biggest sites were quick to get Swedish gambling licences so that they could continue offering their services to Swedish players also after the rule change in early 2019, but there were also hundreds of sites that abruptly chose to stop catering to Swedes due to simply being unable to meet the tightened requirements.
Swedes aren’t new to government-controlled gambling as this is something that has been around for years. All gambling companies in Sweden are government owned and controlled, and have been for a long time. Monopoly is held by Svenska Spel to further control the gambling industry, and many of the existing rules are there to keep gambling (both online and in physical locations) as safe and regulated as possible for Swedish players.
Online casino gambling at overseas casinos is allowed, and while strictly controlled by the Swedish Gambling Authority, it still gives Swedes a bit more freedom to choose where (and what) they wish to play.
As you may already know, online gambling was originally legalised back in 2002 (land-based gambling has been legal since 1994) in Sweden, but the market—as opposed to in-country gambling—didn’t become regulated until in 2019. That is a very big window and we are talking about 17 years of unregulated gambling, with few laws and regulations in place to protect the player.
It is true that the new Gambling Act came as a surprise to many—an unpleasant surprise to online gambling sites that weren’t able to obtain proper licensing, but the truth is that it was a change that was well overdue and should have been expected.
The good thing about the new 2019 law updates is that you are now a lot more protected as a casino player, and as long as you choose sites that have an active Swedish Gambling Authority licence, you have nothing to worry about. It can be tempting to choose unlicensed casinos with seemingly better bonus offers, but it could end up costing you in the end.
Only casinos that are licensed in Sweden are legally allowed to advertise within the country, and to advertise in a way that is aimed at Swedish casino players. Therefore, you won’t be seeing too many online ads as you did before January 1, 2019, and only from casinos that have invested in proper licensing.
About Land-Based Gambling
There are a total of four casinos in Sweden, and these are all run by Svenska Spel and named Casino Cosmopol. If you live in a bigger city, chances are you’ve walked by one without even realising, as they aren’t as flashy-looking on the outside as a casino in, let’s say, Las Vegas or another gambling mecha.
You can find the four land-based casinos in these Swedish cities:
With such few available (physical) gambling sites, many Swedes have instead turned to online gambling, as this allows you to gamble from the comfort of your living room, which becomes extra convenient if you happen to live in a remote area.
If you have gambled from any other country or if you gambled before the new Gambling Act that took over in 2019, then you probably already know how important licensing is. Before, all you had to do was to scroll down to the bottom of the casino page or check the terms and conditions to make sure the casino was licensed, and any of the top licensing authorities was enough. Examples were these:
While these are still a sign of a trustworthy online casino, casinos in Sweden now also need to be licensed by the Swedish Gambling Authority. Any casino that is not licensed by what is known in Sweden as “Spelinspektionen” (Swedish Gambling Authority) is illegal and should not be allowing Swedish players to join.
Number of Swedish Players
An interesting result of the stricter gambling rules is the overall number of Swedish casino players! While there are now slightly fewer online casinos available on the market, the number of gamblers has actually increased since 2019, despite the new Gambling Act having affected Swedish players’ ability to get casino bonuses, for example.
A possible explanation is rooted in the culture. Swedes can be somewhat untrusting when it comes to new things, and especially if it hasn’t been fully proven to be safe. If you are from Sweden, then you probably know that people tend to do their research and to stay away from questionable sites that could come across as scams, and it is possible that the new regulations have motivated inexperienced gamblers to give online casinos a chance.
Famous Casino Games
If you are curious about the most popular casino games in Sweden then you’ll have to keep wondering, as the preferences among Swedish gamblers are as diverse as the game selections themselves. Blackjack and poker are incredibly popular at the few land-based casinos in the country, while slots and sports betting tend to stand out online.
New gamblers in Sweden are often drawn to slot machines, as these don’t require any previous knowledge or experience. Almost every online gambling site licensed by the Swedish Gambling Authority has a large selection of slots, and since the game provider NetEnt has its origins in Sweden, it comes as no surprise that top slots are games like Gonzo’s Quest and Starburst.
The next step for new casino players in Sweden tends to be table games, such as video poker, as these can feel like a safe way to advance to something that often requires a bit more of an understanding for the game. Here you play at a virtual casino table against a random number generator, which makes sure the outcome is random and fair.
If you live far away from the land-based casinos in Malmö, Sundsvall, Gothenburg and Stockholm but still wish to have a more authentic gambling experience, then a live casino could be the right choice for you! Live casinos allow Swedish players to watch the game via live-streamed cameras, and to be able to interact with a real dealer and other players,
Swedes are all about sports, and you’ll find hundreds of men and women watching football (soccer) or ice hockey games on TV on Saturday afternoons, as well as any sports whenever they are broadcasted. Sports betting has become a way to become even more involved in your favourite sport, and it is a hobby that only seems to expand and grow.
Let’s not forget bingo. Bingo games hold a special place in the hearts of the Swedes, and while it was once a game reserved mostly for the older generations, online casinos have given it the boost it needed to reach a whole new audience. You can find bingo games at most online casinos with a Swedish licence.
Bonuses at Swedish Casinos
Casino bonuses are often the first thing people ask about when joining a new casino, but there is good and bad news for casino gamblers from Sweden. Before the Swedish Gambling Act went into effect in 2019, Swedes could get casino welcome bonuses, surprise free spins, participate in cashback programs and much more, and even come across the occasional no deposit casino bonus when joining a new site.
This, however, has changed drastically with the new rules. Online casinos are no longer allowed to offer more than one bonus to their players, and this is per owning company and not individual casinos. What exactly does this mean for you as a player?
Let’s say you received a welcome bonus from an online casino, and then you sign up for a new casino that is owned by the same company. In this scenario, you won’t be eligible for a welcome bonus at the second casino since the two share an owner, and since you already received your welcome bonus at casino number one.
There is also only one casino bonus allowed per household, and even if you haven’t received a bonus yet, someone else in your home might have (even if playing from a separate account) which makes you ineligible.
It may seem like a bummer to only get one casino bonus per casino, but the rules are there for a good reason. The Swedish government wants to regulate the casinos’ efforts to persuade gamblers to play, as a tempting casino bonus could potentially aid in the development of gambling addiction and general overspending.
One thing that hasn’t changed and that you’ll certainly recognise (both from before 2019 and from gambling in other countries) are the wagering requirements. You may only be eligible for one casino bonus per gambling site, but they almost always come with wagering requirements where your “free” money needs to be wagered a certain number of times.
The wagering requirements can be anything from x2 to x40, or essentially whatever each casino considers fair. The good thing is that to obtain a Swedish gambling licence, these wagering requirements and specific terms need to be highly transparent and easy to find, read and comprehend. You will find the specifics on your casino website.
Transactions to and from Swedish online casinos can be made with a variety of different payment methods, and some are certainly more popular than others! While cryptocurrency like Bitcoin is starting to become an increasingly popular option, it is still nowhere near as commonly used as some of the classics.
Here is what many players in Sweden choose for their deposits and withdrawals:
There is a lot to be said about each payment method, but that is another thing that is included in the Gambling Act in Sweden—only trustworthy and secure payment methods are allowed, which means you won’t have to worry when picking your favourite deposit or withdrawal method at a casino licensed in this Scandinavian country.
Just like in many other countries and at various International online casinos, bank transfers remain very popular. A way to make bank transfers quicker and easier is by using Trustly—a Swedish payment service, which simplifies the process. To you, the transaction will look just like when you make one using your internet bank, but you won’t have to wait as long for it to process.
Here are some of the Swedish banks compatible with Trustly:
We recommend that you choose a payment method that lets you keep track of your spendings when gambling in Sweden, and one you feel comfortable using if you are a frequent player. Also, don’t forget to double check fees, minimum transactions and the maximum amount you can send or receive.
We have compared some of the most popular casino payment methods in Sweden here below, to give you a basic idea of what the advantages and the disadvantages are. Some prefer simple card payments, while others are more drawn to e-wallets where you make payments without having to expose your payment details.
|Payment Method||Payment Type||Pros||Cons|
|VISA/Mastercard||Debit/Credit Card||Almost everyone has a card. Widely available.||Inconvenient to always need your card number.|
|Bank Transfer||Wire Transfer||Extremely secure. Available everywhere. Available to anyone with a Bank I.D.||Slow transactions. Casino transactions visible on your bank statement.|
|Trustly||Payment Service||Speeds up regular bank transfers. Adds an extra layer of security. Instant withdrawals.||Not available everywhere.|
|PayPal||E-Wallet||Available only at trustworthy casinos. International payment method. Easy to use.||Only available at a few casinos. Fees on some transactions. Extensive verification.|
|Zimpler||Mobile Payment||Pay with your mobile phone. Low fees. Great for beginners.||Not available everywhere. Only available for deposits.|
Frequently Asked Questions About Gambling in Sweden
Yes. Sweden has very high standards when it comes to online gambling, and as of January 2019, new rules are in place that puts pressure on gambling sites to live up to these in order to obtain a Swedish gambling licence. If a gambling page is licensed by the Swedish Gambling Authority, then you have nothing to worry about.
It is estimated that a little over half of the Swedish population (roughly 58%) participate in some type of money gambling per year, which tells us that gambling in general is popular all around the country.
There is a monopoly on Gambling in Sweden, currently held by Svenska Spel. However, foreign casinos are legally allowed to offer services to Swedish players, and while they need to comply with strict regulations, they aren’t as strict as those applied to Svenska Spel. As a result, foreign gambling sites have a slight advantage due to having more freedom to offer a bigger variety of gambling services.
The legal age to gamble in Sweden is 18, but some online casino sites might have a higher age limit set which you will have to adjust to as a player. The age to enter a land-based casino in Sweden is 20.
If you value quick and hassle-free payments, e-wallets like PayPal, Skrill and Neteller are excellent options and have gained some popularity in Sweden. Bank transfers with Trustly are also an ideal alternative due to its low fees and high security.
Regardless of whether you play at the Svenska Spel site or at a foreign online casino, it should always be free to create your account. Any casino that tries to charge you for joining should probably be avoided as it could be a scam.
Yes there is. Svenska Spel has a monopoly on all types of gambling in Sweden, and all their games are heavily regulated. However, you can also join foreign gambling sites as there is no law preventing Swedish players from gambling at offshore casinos.
No, in fact, sports betting is very popular in Sweden! All in-country sports betting is handled by Svenska Spel.
Responsible Gambling in Sweden
Gambling responsibly when joining a Swedish casino, and don’t make the mistake of thinking that you can’t become addicted to gambling just because of the stricter regulations set by the Swedish government. The rules and restrictions are there to facilitate a healthy gambling relationship, but you also need to be willing to put in the work yourself.
All sites licensed under the Swedish Gambling Authority need to have gambling limits in place so that you can budget how much you are allowed to spend during a day, week or month, and you should also have the option to exclude yourself from the casino for 6 months or the time of your choice.
Make use of these tools and make sure your spendings are never greater than what you can afford to lose, as there are no guarantees you’ll win when gambling on the internet.
If you ever find yourself in a situation where you are losing control of your gambling, or when gambling starts causing you stress and anxiety rather than joy, then it is time to seek external help and especially if you have already set up gambling limits.
Luckily, Sweden is a country with excellent resources for those who suffer from gambling addiction or who feel they might be at risk, and we have listed some of these resources down below. Don’t hesitate to reach out for help if you need it.
Gambling in Sweden
If you are unsure of what to think of the existing gambling rules in Sweden, consider this: Is it important to you that you, your personal information, your payment details and your money are safe when you gamble online? If the answer is yes (which it should be), then you could greatly benefit from the controlled gambling industry in Sweden.
The restrictions aren’t there to restrict you from having a good time, but to make sure you stay safe and maintain a healthy relationship to online gambling. You have the option of gambling through Svenska Spel directly, or to choose one of the online gambling sites that are licensed and regulated by Svenska Spelinspektionen (Swedish Gambling Authority).
Responsible gambling always starts and ends with you, and the Swedish government is only there to help guide you in the right direction, while also making it more difficult for dishonest gambling sites and players to enter the industry. Few countries provide an online gambling scene as safe as Sweden, and that is something worth being grateful for.
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