South Carolina Online Casinos

The state of South Carolina is one of the most restrictive states in the US regarding its legal position on gambling. Simply put, there are neither land-based nor online gambling options available in the Palmetto State right now. Those interested in playing casino games will have to sit in their car and drive to the nearest boat casino or go to a state where casinos are legal. Alternatively, they can opt to register in one of the offshore online casinos.

In this article, we’ll give you a legal overview of gambling in South Carolina. Moreover, we’ll discuss all the possible scenarios related to future gambling in the state.

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Is Online Gambling Legal in South Carolina?

Online gambling is not legal in most forms, and this includes online gambling. Anything that has to do with dice, cards, or betting is strictly forbidden by South Carolina law. The key part from the Statute that outlaws commercial and tribal gambling is below.

“Any person who shall at any time or sitting, by playing at cards, dice table or any other game whatsoever or by betting on the sides or hands of such as do play at any of the games aforesaid, lose to any person or persons so playing or betting,” (From Section 32-1-10)

Let’s take a quick overview of individual forms of gambling and briefly discuss their legal history in the state.

The only form of gambling that is available in the state is the state-run lottery. It started back in 2001 and is still popular. In fact, the residents of this state can also participate in interstate lottery games such as Mega Millions and PowerBall.

There are bingo games that are available in the state from time to time. However, bingo is usually related to the state’s charity gambling laws, meaning the prize money is very small, and the State needs to license every individual bingo event. There have been attempts to host high-stakes bingo games, but the authorities always managed to block them.

There are no land-based casinos available in the state right now. Yet, those who want to play casino games can do so by visiting casino boats. These types of gambling venues have long been frowned upon by the authorities.

The way they used to work is that they would sail to international waters where gambling is technically legal. However, the authorities and the casinos reached a deal back in 2008, and boats are now allowed to operate in South Carolina. In return, ships must pay $7 for every passenger.

The situation with poker is also somewhat complicated, as legislators in South Carolina changed their attitude towards this game several times. The thing with poker is that many consider it a game of skill rather than a game of luck. We’re not going to debate what it really is in this article, but lawmakers in the Palmetto State certainly did that.

First discussions about the very nature of poker began in 2006 when players who took part in a private poker game were convicted. The poker status was later changed as it became a game of skill in 2009 in South Carolina. But it regained its status as a game of chance in 2012, and it is still considered as such nowadays.

Either way, poker games (or any other kind of gambling activity) are strictly forbidden even if they’re private and among friends. This makes South Carolina one of the strictest possible states for gambling.

Offshore Gambling Sites

Online gambling is also strictly forbidden, yet South Carolina residents still have many valid options if they want to engage in such activities. Just like in many other states, it’s not allowed to offer online gambling services, but taking part in them on the web may be possible.

In other words, if you’re in South Carolina and want to play online casino games, you’re free to open an account in one of the international casinos licensed by offshore regulators. However, make sure to consult a lawyer before you do that, as they will be able to tell you more about individual sites.

This applies to all kinds of online gambling, including online casinos, online sportsbooks, online bingo, and more.

Future of Online Gambling in South Carolina

South Carolina is widely regarded as gambling unfriendly, and it seems unlikely that something will change in the near future. If legalizing online gambling is the next logical step after legalizing land-based gambling, then SC has many steps to take before its residents are legally free to play casino games on the web.

In other words, the future doesn’t look so bright for gamblers in the state. The best way to approach this is to look for legitimate offshore sites or accept that you’ll have to go for a boat ride every time you want to play casino games.

Land-Based Casino Options

As we previously stated, there are no land-based casinos in South Carolina. However, if you want to take part in casino games, you can always visit the popular casino ships.

The most popular option is The Big “M” Casino Ship II, which is located in Little River, South Carolina. It’s essentially a 186ft yacht where you can play many casino games and enjoy buffet dining. The exact address for this ship is 4491 Mineola Ave #8743, Little River, SC 29566, United States.

Another great option is the popular Carnival Sunshine Casino, docked in Charleston, SC. This casino is actually located on a cruise ship that usually travels to the Bahamas. The casino covers 2,000 square feet and features 17 table games and 200+ slots.


To sum up, South Carolina is a rather unfavorable place for online casino lovers. Although they can access offshore casinos, it’s highly advised to contact a lawyer before actually opening an account. Moreover, SC doesn’t have any land-based options, and the only way to enjoy casinos is to board a ship that offers casino games.


Unfortunately, SC is one of the states that ban all forms of gambling, including online casinos.

All forms of poker are banned in South Carolina, which means that you cannot play online poker either. Private poker games are also not available in SC.

The minimum legal gambling age in South Carolina is 21. However, even when you’re old enough to gamble, you’ll only be able to do it if you visit casino ships in the state.

At the moment, it seems that SC will not legalize any form of gambling. Therefore, it could take years before this state makes a move towards legalization.

They are available, but you should consult your lawyer before joining an offshore-licensed online casino.