There could be many things that Ireland and its inhabitants are known for, but gambling is one of the things that is deeply ingrained in to the culture of the country. All forms of betting and gambling are fully legal throughout the country, and it is estimated that the Irish people spend roughly €5 billion annually on gambling, which is the equivalent of €14 million per day. More than 2% of adults in the country gamble online regularly, and 12% of them visit a bookmakers every week. From sports betting through to private casinos and bingo halls, you’ll never be short of a location to play a few games at in Ireland.
The industry, as in many other countries, went largely uncontrolled for a vast amount of years, right up until the introduction of the Gaming and Lotteries Act in 1956. It would be this Act that made casino gambling illegal in the country, although loopholes in the law itself have allowed what are known as ‘private member gaming clubs’ to take over the position once filled by standard casinos. These loopholes still exist to this day, despite there being talks to rectify such in order to halt these private clubs hosting such games. The Act of 1956 was still in effect until 2015 when a new law was signed in by Irish President, Michael D. Higgins.
This laws was conceived in response to the outdated Betting Act 1931, which failed to address and account for the explosion of the online gambling industry, as did the Gaming and Lotteries Act 1956. It is this new and amended law, The Betting Act 2015, which now dictates all Irish gambling regulation, including that between Irish residents and foreign operators alongside.