Ontario Online Casinos

Interested in trying your hand at some online casino games in Ontario? But wait – is online gambling in Ontario, or Canada, even legal in the first place?

Today, let’s break down Canada’s online casinos and casino apps in detail. We’ll explore the legality of online casino gaming in Ontario and Canada overall, how you can download different online casino apps, and how you should choose your casino apps to ensure maximum enjoyment and minimal risk.

What Are The Benefits Of Using Legal Online Casino Apps In Ontario?

As of this writing, sports wagering (specifically single-event sports betting) was recently legalized in Canada for both retail locations and online platforms with bill C-218. However, that legislation left out online casino apps.

Therefore, the online casino situation in Canada is the same as it always has been. Each Canadian province, such as Ontario, is responsible for legalizing and regulating online casino apps within its borders.

Because of this, each major province has a single lottery-run online casino platform (some of which also include subsidiary apps for mobile devices, but not all). These online casino platforms are the best places for Canadian residents to enjoy online casino games, slots, and even participate in the lottery online.

Yet many of these platforms are limited compared to the commercial apps offered by the likes of BetMGM, BetRivers, Golden Nugget, and other operators.

Thus, there are plenty of benefits to using lottery run, legal, or commercially authorized casino apps in Ontario, including:

  • Being able to enjoy online casino games from the comfort of your couch. While Canada’s many provinces do include luxurious retail casinos to check out, sometimes you just want to stay home where it’s warm and enjoy some high-quality slot or table games
  • You can win money remotely. Canada allows you to wager real-world cash using offshore online casino apps and platforms. So you aren’t limited to sweepstakes casinos
  • You can rest assured that your funds and personal information will be safe with legal online casino apps. Government-run apps use SSL certification and other digital security methods, whereas there’s no guarantee that offshore apps will do the same

Because offshore online casino apps aren’t technically licensed or legalized in Ontario, you should not download them. Always be careful with whom you provide your personal information as it could end up on the black market.

How To Install Online Casino Apps On An Android Device

Online casino apps in Ontario are provided to Ontarian residents through both the Google Play Store and Apple’s App Store. Installing an online casino app on either type of mobile device is usually quick and simple.

To install online casino apps using an Android device:

  1. Visit the Google Play Store and either browse for casino apps or type in the name of the app you specifically want to download
  2. Click “download” when you’ve located the app. It has an Android version, it’ll be on the Google Play Store
  3. Then wait for the download to finish
  4. Open the app once it has been downloaded and installed on your device
  5. You’ll need to create an account and register for the app before you can deposit funds and start playing games

How To Install Online Casino Apps On An Apple iOS Device

As noted above, downloading and installing an online casino app on an iOS device is functionally identical to doing so on an Android device.

  1. Go to the App Store and type in the name of the app you want to download or browse available casino apps
  2. Then click “download” to begin the automatic download and installation process
  3. Once finished, you’ll need to open the app and register for an account before you can enjoy that casino app’s spread of games

3 Best Online Casino Apps In Ontario

At the time of this writing, there are literally hundreds of offshore casino platforms and mobile apps to check out. However, each Canadian province only has a single official, lottery-run casino platform or app to check out. Thus, these gambling platforms are technically the “best” available due to their security.

More importantly, Ontario is leading the charge toward opening up its online casino market to additional commercial operators. As of October 14, 2021, for example, BetRivers entered the Ontario market and is now available on mobile devices as well as desktops and laptops for all Ontarians aged 19 and up.

Even better, Ontario is still accepting more applications for future online casinos, including BetMGM. This is in addition to new expansions to OLG.ca (Ontario Lottery and Gaming), which is Ontario’s lottery run casino platform. Other provinces may follow Ontario’s lead and open the doors to commercial casino app operators om the future.

BetRivers

BetRivers is one of the first commercial online casino operators available for Canadian residents. At the moment, it’s only available to Ontario residents, but it could spread to other provinces in the near future. This would be an excellent development, as BetRivers’ online casino is chock-full of high-quality slot games, video poker games, table games, and even live casino games.

BetMGM Casino

BetMGM will offer numerous slots, table games, and live dealer options on their casino platform. Jackpots in various contests continue to rise over time with grand prizes reaching $200,000 or higher. Currently, BetMGM Casino is offered in a handful of states across the border.

Golden Nugget Casino

Golden Nugget’s popular casino brand in the United States will likely enter the Ontario market in the near future. GN features a large variety of casino games with hundreds of options. New users in some US locations can get a deposit match of up to $1,000 and 200 free spins on select games. These offers may come around when it launches in Ontario.

Other Online Casino Apps In Canada

While Ontario is going to embrace an open market of casino gambling apps, other provinces in Canada will stick to their lottery organizations for now. We anticipate the market to open up in other locations. But for now, here are some lottery-run online casino platforms Canadians can and should check out

PlayNow.ca

PlayNow.ca is one of the largest gambling portals found in Canada overall. It was developed by the British Columbia Lottery Corporation and launched in 2004. These days, you can find a wide range of casino games, slots, and even poker games.

Note that the iOS and Android apps only allow you to play poker games rather than other casino offerings. Luckily, you can also enjoy live lottery games online and single-event sports wagering all from the same desktop platform.

PlayAlberta.ca

Canadians in Alberta can check out the PlayAlberta platform, which opened in October 2020. It offers casino games and slots in addition to single-game sports wagering and instant lottery game participation.

As a result, it’s a well-rounded online wagering platform even though it isn’t quite as intuitive and well-developed as online casino apps from established commercial operators. Just like PlayNow.ca, PlayAlberta.ca’s online apps are only good for poker games.

CasinoiOS App?Android App?Average ReviewNotable Games
BetRiversYesYes3.8Classic slots, roulette, blackjack and other table games, and live games
PlayNow.caYesYes2.0Blackjack, roulette, live casino games, table games
PlayAlberta.caYesYes2.0Table games, blackjack, slots, roulette, baccarat, and more

Does Every Online Casino In Ontario Offer An App?

No. In fact, there are hundreds of online casino websites or platforms that don’t include a mobile app for iOS or Android devices. That said, the majority of modern online casino operators do include a counterpart app, usually similar in design and color scheme, to the desktop website.

You can and should narrow down your choice of casino platforms based on whether they offer an app. It’s the best way to pick the online casino you’ll enjoy the best. This extends to the provincial, lottery run apps like PlayNow.ca, Atlantic Lottery Corporation’s website, and EspaceJeux (the online portal for Québec which includes slots, table games, and poker).

Remember that no offshore casino app in Ontario is legitimized or licensed by the Ontarian government or a regulatory body. This includes the OLG, iGaming Ontario, and Alcohol and Gaming Commission of Ontario (AGCO). Each of these apps is made and operated by an offshore (i.e. extra-national) company or organization.

So you need to do a lot of research before downloading an offshore app so you don’t download a virus to your mobile device or give your personal information to a company that may misuse it.

How Can Players Deposit Money In Ontario Online Casino Apps?

Luckily, Ontarian residents usually find a plethora of deposit options when they download a mobile casino app to their devices. It’s in casino apps’ best interests to make it as easy as possible for their players to deposit cash to their accounts, after all.

Methods To Deposit Money Using An Online Casino App

Generally speaking, online casino apps allow you to deposit money to your account using credit or debit card transfers, bank account wiring, e-checks or ACH transfers, or even by linking a PayPal or other electronic wallet to your online casino account.

You should check out reviews for online casino apps before downloading them to see what the average wait time is for a withdrawal. The best online casino apps in Ontario will have relatively short withdrawal turnaround times so you don’t have to wait a week or more to receive your winnings after a run of good luck at the digital tables.

Getting An Edge At Mobile Online Casinos

When it comes to mobile online casinos, every move you make and every spin you commit to matters. It’s no wonder it takes a lot of practice to become good enough at online casino games that you can consistently take profits.

But newcomers to Ontario’s online casino offerings may not know how to make the most of their available games or gambling lines. With that in mind, let’s break down how you can get an edge at Ontario’s mobile online casino apps.

Note, of course, that this doesn’t necessarily mean you’ll win at any of these casinos in the long term. The house always wins after all! But these tips can still help you make the most of your time spent at the above three mobile casino apps or any other online gaming platforms. 

Check To See If The Casino App Provides RTP Percentages For Slots

For starters, you should see if the casino app in question offers a good return to player or RTP percentage. This indicates how much of a player’s wager usually go back to them, and it can show you how “cost-effective” it is to play a particular game.

Games with high RTP percentages mean that you can stretch out your gaming funds for quite a while, even if you play the game for hours on end. If the game has a lower RTP percentage, it means that you have to be really lucky in order to keep winning or keep your original gaming nest egg intact. You’ll burn through your money much more quickly with casino games that have a low RTP percentage.

Stay Aware Of Bonuses And Promotions

Naturally, you can also check out the available bonuses and promotional opportunities that a casino app has to offer at the moment. Most top-tier casino apps constantly run promotions by highlighting specific games.

These may include free spins, bonus rewards, or a higher chance to succeed with a mega jackpot event. Plus, lots of online casino apps offer new player bonuses in order to entice newcomers to download their apps. For example, the BetRivers online casino app offers a $250 deposit match bonus (based on how much money you initially deposit to your casino gaming account).

You can and should take advantage of these promotions to maximize your gaming funds and get some free cash while you’re at it.

Shop Around For The Lowest Stakes

Lastly, you may wish to shop around for casino apps and/or games that feature low stakes. Why? Simply put, you don’t become rich by gaming with online casino apps. If you’re just here to have a good time, go for games with low stakes so you don’t lose tons of money very quickly.

Games with low stakes may allow you to spend a relatively small amount of cash on an online casino app but still get hours of entertainment from your activities. This is the best way to enjoy hobby gaming and avoid losing too much money at digital slots.

Is Using An Online Casino App In Ontario Safe?

Yes, so long as you use the lottery run casino apps mentioned above, which are determined by your province, or BetRivers in Ontario. Ontario should launch other commercial online casino apps in the near future, as well.

It’s not a good idea to use an offshore gaming site. Some of these sketchy online casino apps might take your personal information and sell it to cybercriminals. This could make you the victim of identity theft.

Other online casino apps may simply refuse to give you your winnings after you build up enough in your account. Should this occur, there will be nothing you can do since the casino’s operator is in another country.

So, it’s in your best interest to use the lottery-run online casino apps or authorized commercial casino apps like BetRivers as they roll out across the country.

Reasons To Use An Online Casino App Vs. A Website

An online casino app is oftentimes a better bet than a website, however for a few key reasons:

  • By definition, any online casino app you download from the Google Play Store or App Store has to be verified as a legitimate software program, not a virus. That’s the only way they can appear on those Google and Apple-controlled platforms 
  • Furthermore, online casino apps take a lot more effort to create. If a scammer wants to steal money from casino gamers, it’s easier to simply make an attractive desktop website (where they’ll also get more traffic)

That said, you still need to do your research when downloading an online casino app to avoid being taken advantage of.

How Can You Tell An App Is From A Legit Online Casino?

You can always look at the news for your province. For example, Ontario residents could have seen that there is an announcement that BetRivers is now fully legal and licensed throughout the province. But you can also do your own research to determine whether a given casino app is legitimate.

Take a look at screenshots from the online casino app and see what the reviews from former or current users have to say about their experiences. If they tell harrowing stories about how they were unable to get their winnings withdrawn in time or how the customer service was, stay away.

You can also look at the age of the casino app in question. The longer a casino app has been in operation, the better the odds that it’s a legitimate platform and isn’t in the market just to steal funds or personal info.

Is My Money Safe On An Online Casino App In Ontario?

It can be, but you have to take care when downloading casino apps. Again, you should only download a legitimate casino app run by the lottery or a legitimate operator to your mobile device, especially if you plan to spend your hard-earned money on that app.

If your money is ever stolen by an offshore app, there are very few things you can do about it. Ontario’s government will not likely try to pursue legal recourse on your behalf as the offshore gaming site may not be able to be sued. In the worst-case scenario, the operator may not be able to be tracked down in the first place.

Online Casino Apps In Ontario FAQs

How do online casino apps in Ontario verify player age and identity?

Online casino apps in Ontario can verify player age and identity by simply asking for your date of birth and sometimes asking for proof of ID, like a birth certificate. Players must be 19 years of age or older to play casino games in Ontario.

Who’s in charge of regulating online casino apps in Canada?

Each Canadian province’s legit online casino apps are regulated by the province’s lottery corporation. In Ontario, that is the responsibility of the AGCO.

How do the online gambling apps in Ontario keep my information safe?

Most quality online gambling apps available to Ontarian residents will use SSL certification and other digital security means to protect both your information and theirs. This is just another reason why you should do your research and only spend your money on legit online casino apps.

What kinds of online casino games are available in casino apps in Ontario?

Online casino games in Ontario run the gamut from blackjack to baccarat to video poker to slot games and more. It all depends on the online casino app you download!

Can you access live dealer games through online apps in Ontario?

Yes, though it is app-dependent. Some apps will provide live dealer games while others will not provide these gambling opportunities. Because of this, it’s a good idea to shop around and find the best online casino app for your unique preferences.

Are legal online casino apps in Ontario offered through the App Store?

Yes. The Google Play Store and Apple Store offer legal online casino apps to Ontarian residents.

About the Author

Amber Hoffman

Amber is the Managing Editor of Toronto Sports Media. She writes for a variety of websites in diverse industries, including gaming and travel and is a fan of international football (not "soccer") and Gaelic sports.