Today we are going to dive into the world of gambling in Mexico. We will tell you what you should pay attention to when choosing an online casino and present our top of the best online casinos in Mexico. You will also learn about the legality and legal status of various games and how the powers that be treat cryptocurrencies. We will touch on the bonuses available for our Mexican players and about the best payment systems that allow you to make a deposit at an online casino or sportsbook. We will pay special attention to the situation with lotteries and poker, and we will also look at the most popular fixed casinos.
Best Online Casinos For Mexican People
Mexico is pretty chill when it comes to gambling laws in general and online casinos in particular. As a result, there’s a healthy number of major online casinos getting their game on and pushing their brand.
However, there are a few key things to keep in mind before signing up for an online casino. We’ll get to those in a bit, but for now, let’s check out the cream of the crop when it comes to casinos available for players from Mexico:
Gambling in Mexico has roots from two civilizations. First up, the Aztecs, who were quite the thrill-seekers. Secondly, European colonizers, who brought a slew of card and table games, like roulette, to Mexico’s shores. Under French rule in the 19th century, the first proper casinos popped up.
The first legislative steps in this direction were made by President Porfirio Diaz, who took office in 1876. After he came to power, Mexicans and visitors to the country had nearly 30 years of betting on sports and hitting the casinos. However, the honeymoon for gamblers didn’t last long. By 1911, following the revolution, the first attempts to put the kibosh on gambling were made. The final ban hit the industry in 1947, lasting until the end of the 20th century.
The first modern attempts to legalize certain forms of gambling kicked off in 2000 with the arrival of President Vicente Fox. Full legalization didn’t pan out, as the Catholic Church, with its high societal influence, put up a roadblock. This trend continues to this day. Gradually, many forms of gambling are crawling out from the ban, the latest being nearly all card games, like poker, and slot machines.
Legality and regulation of gambling
In Mexico, there are two key laws that regulate pretty much all forms of gambling. These are The Federal Gaming and Raffles Law and Regulations of The Federal Gaming and Raffles Law. These laws lay out the legal forms of gambling and their structure throughout Mexico. These laws keep a tight grip on brick-and-mortar gambling, sports betting, and lotteries. However, the provisions for online gambling aren’t exactly crystal clear. As a result, a lot of cases are left up to the discretion of a special Bureau.
Nevertheless, these documents allow any individual or business entity to obtain a license to run gambling games. As such, online casinos are considered legal in Mexico, but only if they’re tied to land-based gambling companies. In practice, this rule isn’t always observed because many online casinos are offshore and therefore fall outside Mexican jurisdiction.
Choosing the best online casinos in Mexico
When we size up different online casinos, we take a bunch of important criteria into account. As promised, we want to share these with you so that you know what to keep your eyes peeled for. First off, of course, is the presence of an international license. Secondly, you should always suss out user reviews about the site and take a gander at the casino’s bonus policies. Lastly, look out for convenient payment systems and whether the site is mobile-friendly, especially if you’re planning to play from your phone. We’ll be diving into each of these aspects in more detail.
Legality and Safety
Since the current legislation doesn’t cater for a separate license for online casinos, we zero in on the existence of an international license. Commissions like the UKGC, Curacao, and MGA are top dogs in this space. Hence, having a license from one of these regulators is your ticket to quality and safety.
To suss out whether you’re dealing with a legit casino or not, you gotta read what other players are saying about it. You can do this on dedicated casino sites as well as gaming forums. Among the most popular sites in Mexico, casino.guru and onlinecasino.mx stand out.
Bonuses & Promotions
Everyone loves freebies, so we pay special attention to this area. Mexican players can access welcome bonuses and regular rewards in the form of reloads, tournaments, and loyalty schemes. The juicier the bonuses, the higher such a casino scores on our rating scale. We’ll be unpacking the main types of bonuses in the relevant section.
The more deposit methods a casino has, the handier it is. As a result, all the top-notch casinos boast a wide array of payment systems. These include traditional banking methods, e-wallets, and cryptocurrencies.
24/7 customer support has long become the gold standard in the industry. The next step is to support a wide range of languages because that’s the only way to ensure effective communication. In the best Mexican casinos, customer service reps speak not only English but also Spanish.
Many players prefer to gamble on mobile devices. Therefore, we pay special attention to how well the site is adapted for smartphones across various operating systems. If the site is user-friendly and runs smoothly, that casino scores extra points in our rating.
Bonuses and promotions for Mexican players
Pretty much every casino has a similar bonus scheme that includes two key elements: welcome bonuses and bonuses for regular players. There aren’t any restrictions for players from Mexico, so they get the full scope of bonus offerings. This could range from deposit bonuses to special rewards for reaching certain levels in ranking systems. Let’s dive deeper into each type of bonus.
This one’s for the newbies who have just created an account. Most casinos don’t make you lift a finger to get it; it’s applied automatically. But in some cases, you might need to opt-in or enter a promo code. It usually consists of a top-up to your deposit amount and a bunch of free spins. For instance, at 1xSlots casino, you can look forward to a fourfold bonus applied to your first four deposits:
First deposit – 100% match and 30 free spins
Second deposit – 50% match and 35 free spins
Third deposit – 25% match and 40 free spins
Fourth deposit – 25% match and 45 free spins
Regular Player Bonuses
For seasoned gamblers, there are often even more sweet deals. These include weekly/monthly reloads and special ranking systems that let you grab awesome rewards just for spinning the reels on your favorite slots. Take Volna Casino, for example, they offer these types of bonuses:
Cashback – every Monday you can get back up to 10% of your losses
Happy Birthday – a special gift on your birthday, the higher your ranking status, the better the gift
Reload – deposit with this bonus and get 50% extra and 100 free spins
Maxi 30 – a weekly bonus, once activated, adds 30% to your deposit
Status system – a ranking system open to every player. It has 4 tiers, each with increased cashback, cool bonuses, and much more
Races and Tournaments
How can you boost your odds of winning while playing your favorite slots? Simple answer – get involved in races and tournaments. This type of bonus is a separate activity run by the casino and its providers. To join in, just hit the registration button, then you’ll see a list of games and terms. Overall, the terms are pretty much the same everywhere – just play the slots on the list and earn points for each spin/win. The more points you have when the tournament ends, the bigger your prize.
Sports betting in Mexico
According to a law passed back in 1947, the operations of bookie joints are totally legit throughout all of Mexico. There’s a body in the country that hands out the necessary licenses – the General Bureau of Gambling and Lotteries. Nonetheless, many Mexican punters prefer offshore bookmakers because their offers, as well as their functionalities, are a tad bit better and more comprehensive than those of local reps.
Speaking of the most popular bookie joints, it’s worth highlighting a few local big dogs in the market: Caliente and Codere. Among offshore bookmakers, Bet365, Betway, 1xBet, and Marathonbet are the crowd favorites.
The sport itself is also very popular in Mexico. Loads of people not only follow professional sports but also regularly participate on an amateur level. Let’s whip up a quick list of the most popular sports:
Soccer – a massively popular sport that was brought over in the late 19th century by English miners. It’s been a hot minute since then, and the popularity of this sport has been growing year by year. Mexico successfully hosted two World Cup matches, in 1970 and 1986. The national team is considered pretty strong and regularly competes in championships like Pan America, CONCACAF, and NAFC.
Baseball – a sport that was introduced by American soldiers during the Mexican war. Since then, two leagues have popped up in the country – the Mexican Baseball League (Summer League) and the Mexican Pacific League (Winter League).
Boxing – Mexican boxers are considered some of the best in the world. Famous boxers include Julio Cesar Chavez, Salvador Sanchez, among many others. Thanks to their success on the international stage, boxing has gained a high level of popularity.
Lucha Libre – a sport that combines professional wrestling and high-level acrobatics. It’s very similar to American wrestling, including some types of “theatrical” performances. Mexicans love it for the exciting fights that are always entertaining to watch.
Taekwondo – another popular contact sport where the focus is on kicking. Mexico is a country where this martial art has highly developed. Just consider the total number of martial arts schools, which exceeds 3,000, as well as the regular medals earned by Mexican athletes at the Olympic Games.
Convenient payment systems
There’s a whole bunch of payment systems in Mexico. With their help, you can easily deposit both in an online casino and a bookie joint. Since the government doesn’t put up any roadblocks to online gaming, many Mexican players prefer to deposit directly using a bank card. But some casinos don’t accept bank cards from Mexico, then players can resort to other popular alternatives. We’re about to spill the beans on those, along with getting into the nitty-gritty of the banking methods.
A convenient and straightforward way to top up your account at an online casino. Since the government doesn’t put up barriers to online gaming, carrying out a transaction is a piece of cake. Modern encryption methods ensure high levels of data security and reliability, so punters have nothing to sweat about when choosing this method.
Somewhat old-fashioned, but still a fairly popular method to top up your account at an online casino. The pros include high reliability and security, as well as no need to leave your bank details on the casino website. The cons – the transaction takes a good few days to process.
Prepaid card systems
A popular choice among those gamers who are not keen on leaving their bank details on online casino websites. The essence of this method is that you buy an online card for a specific amount. You then use this when depositing to an online casino or bookmaker. Local services such as Todito Cash and OXXO are especially popular, but there are also international companies, such as PaySafeCard or AstroPay.
Traditionally, these services are used in countries where there are issues with topping up using bank cards. Mexico doesn’t have this problem, so this method is comparatively unpopular. However, some players use wallets like Skrill, Neteller, and others. Registration is easy, after which you can top them up using your bank card and then transfer money wherever you like.
A convenient method that more and more gamblers are shifting towards. Low fees, speedy transactions, and ease of purchasing and using cryptocurrency are the main draws.
NOTIFY In Mexico, there’s no separate legislation regulating the cryptocurrency market. However, there is a relatively recent decree, such as the “Law on Financial Technologies” from March 9, 2018, which considers cryptocurrencies as “digital assets”.
According to this decree, buying and selling cryptocurrency is not prohibited, nor is its use for depositing to an online casino. However, cryptocurrency is not recognized as legal tender, so using it for online purchases is a no-go.
Popular gambling providers in Mexico
In Mexico, both widely recognized providers and talented market newcomers are popular. On the whole, Mexicans appreciate a variety of gaming mechanics and high-quality graphic design in slots. A unique point is the thematic aspect of the slots. Developers who take into account Mexico’s local cultural features get the biggest applause. Next, we’ll look at a list of the most popular developers.
One of the pioneers of the market, who got the ball rolling back in 1999. They develop both software for land-based slots, which you can find in Mexican brick-and-mortar casinos, and online slots.
A relative newbie in the game, set up in 2016. They focus on combining gaming engines and the experience of many developers. As a result, their products blend innovative approaches with familiar solutions that are all the rage on the market.
A provider that managed to hit the big time in record speed. Using their own ideas, coupled with careful attention to every detail, has allowed the developer to win the backing of players worldwide. And Mexico was no exception.
A well-known player in the market, established in 2010. Initially, they were all about creating land-based slot machines, but quickly caught on that the future lies in online gaming. As a result, they successfully transitioned ideas from their land-based machines to online slots, which has resonated with players in Mexico.
A Swedish company founded in 2011. Since then, they’ve developed not such a vast array of online slots, as they’ve concentrated on product quality rather than quantity. And it’s paid off, as Mexican gamers appreciate their meticulous approach to development.
Land-based casinos in Mexico
Land-based casinos are entirely legal in Mexico. The country boasts over 100 different establishments. They mainly differ in scale and location. The country has industry giants, with some having thousands of machines, as well as quite small joints catered for local punters. Next, we’d like to dive into some of the most popular casinos in more detail.
Casino Revolución – a well-known casino located in Monterrey, Nuevo Leon state. The gaming zones are divided into 4 nominal types:
Land-based machines – here you’ll find various land-based slots and multigames
Bingo Zone – play your favorite game on special electronic devices
Sports betting – keep tabs on current broadcasts and place bets in real-time
Live dealer games – in this zone you can play various table and card games with other players
The actual casino building itself is built in a classic Mexican style and is a pretty sizeable joint, housing thousands of gaming units. It also features a restaurant and a lounge bar, where anyone can kick back and relax.
Caliente Casino – the biggest casino owned by the Mexican company Caliente Casino Race and Sports Books, located in Tijuana, Baja California. The game selection at this casino is mind-blowing. It has over 2,000 slot machines from various developers, special machines for sports betting (horse racing and dog racing), and a ton of tables for different table and card games.
Beyond gaming, the casino grounds also boast top-notch restaurants and several hotels where you can crash. It’s worth mentioning the “Hipódromo Aguacaliente” racetrack owned by the company and located not too far away. It regularly hosts various races, on which you can bet in real time.
Another noteworthy feature is the special VIP club, dubbed the Caliente Casino Club 333. Its visitors get special service and access to high-limit slot machines and, of course, high-stakes table and card games.
Lotteries and other gambling entertainment in Mexico
The modern history of the lottery in Mexico starts in 1978. That’s when the relevant legal framework was established, and the main companies that develop and conduct lotteries were created. They are still active today. At present, there are several operators worth mentioning:
Pronósticos para la Asistencia Pública – responsible for the official conduct of instant-draw lotteries
Lotería Nacional para la Asistencia Pública – conducts the biggest draws for “classic” type lotteries
Both these companies are not private, but regulated by the Mexican government. Consequently, a large part of the proceeds goes towards social needs and the development of the country’s economy. Next, we’ll look at the main types of lotteries that exist in Mexico:
Melate – like most classic lotteries, you need to pick a certain number of numbers from a range. In the case of the Melate lottery, it’s 6 numbers in a range from 1 to 56. A row of 6 numbers costs 15 pesos. Hence, you can buy more rows, increasing your odds. During the draw, 6 random numbers are chosen. If you’ve matched at least 2 of them, you win a prize. The more numbers you match, the higher the prize. The draws are held twice a week: on Wednesdays and Sundays at 9:55 PM local time.
Chispazo – a 5/28 lottery where you need to choose 5 numbers from a range of 1 to 28. The fewer numbers imply a higher probability of winning. An interesting feature is a system where, if no player correctly guesses all 5 numbers, the jackpot is redistributed to those who guessed 4 numbers. A pleasant aspect is the frequent draws, held twice a day, and the relatively low ticket cost – 10 pesos for every 5 lines.
Raspaditos – are nifty little instant lotteries that are quite the rage in Mexico. You can get your hands on these tickets either the old-school way, or on specialized websites. The mechanics of the draw vary a bit, but in general, you just need to scratch off the covered symbols to see what windfall you’ve bagged. Winnings can skyrocket up to hundreds of thousands of pesos. Cashing out your bounty is as easy as dropping by the corresponding lottery offices.
Speaking of Mexico, you can’t leave out poker. The poker scene here is as buzzing as it is in our neighbors up north. As a result, you’ve got both amateurs and pros dealing it out in full swing. All thanks to the chill legislation that’s pretty lenient towards this card game. You can try your hand at poker pretty much in any brick-and-mortar casino in Mexico, and stakes can sometimes be sky-high, a real treat for the high-rollers.
Online poker also doesn’t face any hurdles, despite the absence of any specific legislation tailored for online poker. Loads of renowned poker rooms, like GGPokerok, PokerStars, 888poker, PartyPoker and others, happily welcome Mexican players.
Reliability and safety of online casinos in Mexico
Mexico doesn’t have any specific licensing for online casinos, as there isn’t a solid legal framework for online gambling. As a result, offshore online casinos, operating under international licenses, have set up shop across the country. The online casinos operating in Mexico are pretty secure. They’re fortified by top-notch encryption, combined with cutting-edge banking technology, ensuring you don’t lose sleep over your banking details. But sometimes, players ask: what if the casino bamboozles me?
There’s an answer to this. If the casino violates its license rules regarding you, or acts unfairly, you can knock on the doors of the commission that granted the license to the casino. You can do this by reaching out via email, which you can find on the commission’s website. In a few weeks, you’ll receive a response that will likely solve your issue.
To wrap it up, it’s fair to say that Mexico has been on the right track for quite a while now. Instead of putting a blanket ban on gambling, it’s been controlling it. This decision hits the nail on the head, as it prevents the gambling market from going underground, and helps fill the state coffers.
As you’ve probably gathered, various forms of gambling are legal in Mexico, from brick-and-mortar slots and roulettes to online slots and online poker. Thanks to convenient payment systems and a developed banking infrastructure, online players can enjoy the thrill of the game comfortably.
Frequently Asked Questions
Are online casinos legal in Mexico?
There is no separate legislation that regulates the online casino market. As a consequence, they remain in the shadows, which does not prohibit playing in them.
What is the situation with sports betting in Mexico?
There are legal bookmakers in the country, which operate in accordance with the issued licenses. But only betting on horse racing and dog racing is officially legal in the country. This implies that offshore bookmaker offices are very popular among Mexicans, where any kind of sports are available.
What are the deposit methods for online casinos in Mexico?
Of the main ones are, of course, bank cards. But highly popular are various prepaid card services, such as OXXO, Todito Cash, PaySafeCard, and others. And of course we should not forget about e-wallets and cryptocurrencies.
Are there any land-based casinos in Mexico?
There are over 100 different land-based casinos in Mexico. From large and fashionable, to small establishments designed for local players.
Is online poker legal in Mexico?
As with online casinos, there is no separate legal framework for online poker. As a consequence, it remains outside the law. But the positive point is that the federal authorities do not prevent the game in any way.