Needless to say, online casinos are nowhere to be seen, considering that the Last Frontier only allows charitable bingo games and pull-tabs, together with betting on dog mushing, the signature sport of the state.
Yet, Alaska’s cold climate toward gambling doesn’t exclude the possibility of online casinos completely. If you know where to look, you can find a plethora of offshore online casinos that accept the residents of Alaska and allow them to play online casino games and place bets.
The text below covers the gambling matter in Alaska in more detail, as well as the outline of the state’s legal gambling portfolio.
Online gambling in Alaska is a topic open for interpretation. The activity is far from regulated and it looks like the state officials don’t have any intentions of addressing the issue in the near future.
For quite some time, Alaska has been treading water when it comes to gambling development. The primary reason for this is the lack of inhabitants interested in gambling venues or online casinos.
With such a situation on the market, gambling operators are not very keen on making any investments, which further discourages lawmakers from pushing for the legislation of online gambling in the Last Frontier.
Since there’s currently no hope Alaska will allow the operation of online casino sites within the state, an alternative had to be found. For this reason, the residents of Alaska started visiting offshore online casinos that are more than happy to cater to US citizens.
As there are no laws that strictly prohibit signing up and playing for real money in offshore casinos, Alaska instantly fell into the so-called grey area where nothing is clearly defined. However, after a careful examination of the Alaska Statutes, one particular sentence related to unlawful gambling activities got our attention.
Namely, there is a section in the AS 11.66.230 that describes the devices used for unlawful gambling activities:
“A ‘gambling device’ means any device, machine, paraphernalia, or equipment that is used or usable in the playing phases of unlawful gambling, whether it consists of gambling between persons or gambling by a person involving the playing of a machine.”
Depending on the way you look at it, a gambling device can be any electronic device used for playing games of chance, including our computers and phones. However, there have been no cases of players from Alaska getting into trouble for using their PCs or smartphones for playing online games in offshore casinos.
Therefore, it is highly unlikely that anyone will ever accuse you of illegal gambling and confiscate your electronic device, let alone you’ll ever face any serious consequences.
All this further implies that Alaskans have nothing to worry about if they occasionally enjoy a hand or two of online poker in virtual casinos based outside their state’s borders.
When it comes to the future of online gambling in Alaska, we must mention the fact that, on the level of the whole country, recent years have brought significant changes. Many states started legalizing online casinos and sportsbooks to keep up with the rest of the world.
Unfortunately, Alaska hasn’t paid much attention to the way its fellow states do gambling business. Even though efforts have been made in the past regarding the introduction of standard land-based casinos, the majority of state government members were strongly against it.
The same thing happened with the suggestion to open card rooms in Alaska. The majority of state officials were against any card games that could involve the risk of losing money, so they called a halt to this legislation.
Moreover, if we exclude Utah and Hawaii, we can say that Alaska has some of the most limited views on gambling in general, provided that even the state lottery doesn’t exist in the Last Frontier. Again, there have been several attempts to launch the lottery but to no avail.
Now, it is common knowledge that land-based gambling legislation usually precedes online gambling legislation. All these facts combined can only mean one thing for online gambling — Alaska has done nothing and will highly unlikely do anything to make online casinos legal in the state.
Not only were there no particular moves made in the direction of online gambling legislation, but the subject wasn’t even raised in legislative meetings for quite some time. All in all, Alaskans will have to rely on offshore online casinos until the state officials change their mind and start working on online gambling legislation.
In Alaska, there are no standard land-based casinos, at least not in the form we are used to seeing in other states.
Even the Indian reservations in Alaska are not allowed to build and run tribal casinos. This is due to the fact that native reservations in Alaska, for some reason, don’t comply with the definition of “Indian lands” and cannot be subject to independent taxation.
On the other hand, Alaska offers some forms of gambling that are state-specific. This mainly includes betting on particular outdoor activities typical for Alaskan culture.
The most prominent activities to bet on are dog musher contests that are similar to betting on horse racing and greyhound racing. If you are over 18, you can take part in these contents by paying an entry fee set by the organizer.
Then, you can place bets on several different aspects of the contest:
Once the contest is over, the total prize pool is shared among the winners accordingly.
Along with dog mushing, there are other outside activities Alaskans can bet on, like fish derbies and various snow activities. Probably the most interesting contest to take part in is betting on the day when the first salmon will be caught once the fishing season starts.
These gambling options are completely legal and approved by organizations licensed by the Department of Revenue Tax Division.
There are several bingo halls that are considered casinos in Alaska. These venues include bingo games and pull-tabs players can have fun with. Here are some of the options available in Alaska:
|Anchorage||Tudor Bingo Center||1436 East Tudor Road, Anchorage, Alaska 99507-1034||1,114 Bingo Seats|
|Anchorage||Northern Lights Bingo||703 West Northern Lights Boulevard, Suite 100A, Anchorage, Alaska 99503-2644||300 Bingo Seats|
|Anchorage||Lucky Boniface Bingo||360 Boniface Parkway, Anchorage, Alaska 99504-4908||250 Bingo Seats|
|Barrow||Native Village Barrow Pull Tabs||1082 Kiogak Street, Barrow, Alaska 99723||Pull-tabs|
|Eagle River||Eagle River Bingo & Casino||12130 Regency Drive, Eagle River, Alaska 99577-7712||150 Bingo Seats|
|Juneau||Tlingit and Haida Community Bingo||3235 Hospital Drive, Juneau, Alaska 99801-7809||300 Bingo Seats|
|Klawock||Klawock IRA Smoke Shop||310 Bayview Boulevard, Klawock, Alaska 99925||60 Bingo Seats|
|Kodiak||Sun’aq Tribal Bingo||312 West Marine Way, Kodiak, Alaska 99615-6396||300 Bingo Seats|
|Metlakatla||Metlakatla Indian Community Bingo||Eighth and Waterfront Metlakatla, Alaska 99926||90 Gaming Machines, 120 Bingo Seats|
|Sand Point||Agate Pull Tabs||100 Main Street, Suite 3A, Sand Point, Alaska 99661||Pull-tabs|
|Sitka||Sitka Tribal Bingo||235 Katlian Street, Alaska Native Brotherhood Hall, Sitka, Alaska 99835-7502||100 Bingo Seats|
No, online casinos are not permitted to operate within Alaska’s state borders, and the same goes for online bookmakers.
Although online casinos are not allowed to operate within Alaska’s borders, there is no written law that prohibits gambling on offshore online gambling sites.
The Last Frontier made bingo games available to players over the age of 19, while pull-tabs can only be played by citizens who are at least 21. When it comes to dog mushing contests, everyone above 18 is allowed to participate.
In Alaska, players can indulge in charitable bingo games and pull-tabs, together with the state-specific betting on dog mushing.
No, no online gaming is permitted in Alaska at all, but offshore gambling sites are not forbidden and can be accessed by the residents of the Last Frontier. Players can indulge in online gambling activities in offshore casinos without the fear of being persecuted.
No. Bingo halls in Alaska are not allowed to offer casino table games.