Rhode Island Online Casinos in the Future: a Speculative Review
Rhode Island online casinos don’t look likely any time soon.
The state has a long gambling history but has generally been opposed to building new casinos. It even took a tribal gaming case to the Supreme Court in 2009.
Only one new casino has been built in Rhode Island since the first Twin River site in 2007.
Based on that information, you’d be wise not to hold your breath for legal online casino gambling in Rhode Island in the near future.
What gambling is legal in Rhode Island?
Currently, online sports betting is legal in Rhode Island, but online casinos are not.
Only one operator is running the show – Sportsbook Rhode Island. It features a desktop site and an official app for both iOS and Android devices.
However, there is one workaround option for legal online slots play in Rhode Island. Enter Chumba Casino.
Using its innovative sweepstakes based system, you don’t directly wager any money—but you can still win cash prizes. Read our review here for a full rundown of how this works.
Will any more legal sportsbooks open up in the Ocean State soon? The state may allow private enterprises to set up online sportsbooks to compete with the lottery.
However, most online sportsbooks in other legal states are required to partner with a land-based casino. There are only two land-based casinos in Rhode Island, and legislators have repeatedly shut down attempts to build more.
This could prevent new sportsbooks from setting up shop.
Online Gambling Deposits and Withdrawals in Rhode Island
In the past, you needed to visit one of the Twin River Casino sites in Rhode Island in person before your online account would open for deposits.
This requirement was lifted in July 2020 because of the coronavirus pandemic restrictions making in-person visits difficult.
Sportsbook Rhode Island currently only lets you deposit or withdraw by debit card or directly from your bank account. The minimum amount you need to deposit is $20, and the most you can put in is $10,000 a day.
Both methods use a service called Global Payments VIP Preferred™ E-Check.
You need to sign up for this service before you can deposit at Sportsbook Rhode Island.
When depositing, these methods provide funding instantly. When withdrawing winnings, it takes 24 hours for Sportsbook RI to process the money and then 3-5 days for the funds to hit your bank account.
If online casinos are legalized in Rhode Island in the future, you will see a wider range of payment options.
Online Gambling Bonuses in Rhode Island
Currently, Sportsbook RI does not offer any welcome bonuses or promotions.
However, this may change, especially if more legal sportsbooks open up in Rhode Island, and the state operator finds itself with more competition.
Online gambling bonuses players in other legal states enjoy today include:
- Deposit matches
- Free bets or spins
- Cashback on any losses in a specified period
- Special odds on given dates or sporting events
If online casinos are ever legalized in Rhode Island, you can expect to see offers similar to those above.
You can bet on a decent range of sports through the state’s only currently legal operator, Sportsbook RI:
- College sports
- MLS and soccer from around the world
Some niche sports like handball, UFC, and e-sports are not included. The sports range at Sportsbook RI isn’t as impressive as in some other states, but all the usual American favorites are there.
The sportsbook offers spread and moneyline bets, as well as some futures. It doesn’t currently offer in-play or prop betting.
Visit our Rhode Island Sports Betting page for a comprehensive look at sports betting in the Ocean State.
In 1934,Rhode Island voters chose to allow horse racing bets at the two racetracks that operated in the state back then.
1974 saw the state lottery launch. In the 1980s, it added scratch-cards and bingo to its in-store and phone offerings.
1992-1994 was a big period of change for gamblers in Rhode Island. The state’s two racetracks were authorized to run off-track phone betting and video slot terminals, which effectively turned them into limited casinos.
In 1994, however, the state voted down a bill that would have seen fully legal casinos anywhere in the state.
In 2007, the Lincoln Park racetrack stopped its racing and became Twin River Casino.
In 2012, Twin River finally received the license to run full casino services, including table games and roulette wheels. In 2016, the Rhode Island public voted ‘yes’ to a new casino in Tiverton.
On June 22, 2018, Rhode Island Governor Gina Raimondo signed a bill that would allow offline sports betting in the state.
In March 2019, the bill was amended to include online operators—initially only the state. British company IGT was chosen to power the state lottery’s sports betting platform, Sportsbook Rhode Island.
Sportsbook Rhode Island was launched in November 2019.
However, the Rhode Island Republican Party immediately initiated a lawsuit to stop it. It claimed that the state needed to hold a referendum first.
In June 2020, however, the Rhode Island Superior Court ruled in favor of the State Lottery, and Sportsbook Rhode Island continued.
In October 2020, Sportsbook Rhode Island added British-based bookmaker William Hill as a development partner for its online sportsbook. WH will add its expertise to developing a better site and mobile app for the state-run operation.
FAQ on Rhode Island Online Gambling
Rhode Island features a lower minimum gambling age than many states—18. You need to provide your social security number and other forms of ID to prove you are of age when you create your online sportsbook account.
Unlike some legal states that lock you out of your account when you cross state lines, RI still lets you check your balance and other account activities from outside of its borders.
However, you cannot place a bet until you’re back in Rhode Island territory.
This geolocation technology is automatic on mobile. On a desktop or laptop, you are required to download a small browser add-on before you can place a bet.
Online gambling in the state is regulated by the state-run Rhode Island Lottery. It also oversees the only sportsbook option in the state at the moment—Sportsbook RI.
No. Currently, Sportsbook RI only accepts card and bank account deposits through its payment processor Global Payments VIP Preferred™ E-Check.
Some operators in other legal sports betting states offer PayPal. Sportsbook RI may add the popular e-wallet as an option at some point.
Alternative e-wallet options Rhode Island operators could use in the future are Neteller and Skrill.