Gambling is not a New Phenomenon, it Existed Since Centuries

Gambling not a new phenomenon, it existed since centuries
Gambling is not a new phenomenon, it has existed for centuries

Pokies are seen as a huge plague of communities across New Zealand in today’s day and age. The fact is that gambling in several forms has been existing for thousands of years. Gambling is not a new phenomenon. With this knowledge, it is quite clear why it is that many see pokies and other forms of gambling as the woes of the nation in recent times. But, whether there is more to the problems of New Zealand than a few pokie machines?

Gambling is a very large part of New Zealand’s culture and has come a long way since citizens’ only option was to play private card games for money. The industry has seen its twist and turns, which makes it all the more fascinating. Understanding its history will give you a better appreciation of the country as a whole. Learn here how Gambling is not a New Phenomenon, it Existed Since Centuries.

History of Gambling in NZ

History of gambling in NZ
History of gambling in NZ

Well, this game was rife even as far back as Roman times. Whether it be with a die or other versions of gambling, the rich and poor alike of Roman times were all happy to enjoy a flutter or two.

With this, there were also the cheats who tried to steal money through unruly means from fellow gamblers. There were laws that came into existence to outlaw gambling but it did not good as the people enjoyed the pastime and carried on regardless. It showed that no matter what the rulers said, the people would still enjoy their favourite pastime.

Gambling Origins – Gambling is not a New Phenomenon

1. Horse Racing

Horse Racing
Horse Racing

Gambling has been around for as long as New Zealand has been a country, but it wasn’t until the 1830s that it became a popular sport for adults to play. This is the time when horse racing became a nationwide sport and when a large part of the population saw a way to have fun and, if they were lucky, make some money.

Unfortunately for those who enjoyed betting on horses, the government banned bookmakers from taking wagers on the sport. This meant that starting in 1910, the only way punters could make a bet was to show up at the race track. It wasn’t until 1950 that the Totalisator Agency Board (TAB) was established, allowing people to make bets on any horses at any tracks in the country.

In 1908 Horse Racing became legal

1908 Horse Racing became legal
In 1908 Horse Racing became legal

In 1908, the Gambling Act made horse racing betting the only legal form of gambling in New Zealand. This was a time when many people started placing bets on horses without worrying about getting caught or being penalized for it.

The first Europeans brought this popular game with them to NZ and despite its illegality now people can still enjoy an exciting race day experience at any TAB outlet around the country!

The early history of gambling talks about it as a phenomenon that has always been tied to money and the desire for opportunities. It does not matter how people have played, whether they were rolling dice on the floor or betting their life savings in an online casino; there will always be those who are ready to try their luck at winning big!

Gambling seems like something you would only see in movies about Las Vegas casinos with fancy suits and showgirls. You can find these games right here if you’re looking for games like pokies machines, poker tables, roulette wheels – even blackjack among other table games – all found right inside land-based casinos across North America as well as Australia too!

2. Lotteries and Pokies

Lotteries and Pokies
Lotteries and Pokies

In July 1987, New Zealand had its first nationwide lottery system developed by the New Zealand Lotteries Commission. Since then, Kiwis have been able to purchase Lotto tickets and scratch cards through a number of establishments.

Just a few years later, pokies were legalized in the country. This brought even more excitement to gambling since the games were easy to understand and play. Since their introduction in 1991, pokies have spread all across the country and today they can be found in over 1,500 locations.

3. Casinos

Casinos
Casinos

Christchurch Casino is New Zealand’s first casino in 1994. It gave locals and tourists a chance to legally gamble where you can also get food, alcohol, and entertainment. This further increased the popularity of horse racing and pokies, and it also introduced the country to table games.

Current Gambling Laws

Current Gambling Laws
Current Gambling Laws

All gambling in New Zealand is governed by the Department of Internal Affairs. The majority of gambling establishments in the country are state-run, which allows the profits of those industries to go back into the community.

The Racing Act 2003 and the Gambling Act 2003 regulate all types of gambling in New Zealand. The Racing Act 2003 is packed with every law that has to do with sports betting and racing. The Gambling Act 2003 regulates every other type of gambling in the country.

Most of New Zealand’s gambling laws were there to keep machines and other games up to code, but many of the laws also instruct what citizens can and can’t do privately. It is up to each individual gambler to know these laws so they can avoid fines.

1. Land-based NZ Casinos

Land-based NZ casinos
Land-based NZ casinos

It is legal since 1990, where operators require a license to run a casino.

There are 6 casinos in New Zealand, and guests must be 20+ to enter.

Casino games are regulated, even the types and rules for all games a casino can offer are laid out by the gambling legislation. Such games include pokies, bingo, and many table games including various types of poker, roulette, and blackjack.

Apart from the 6 casinos, since 1987, pokies can also be found in hotels and dedicated clubs, slot halls (pokies clubs). However, all of these should be operated by non-profit charities, and revenue from this kind of gambling activity is used to fund various socially beneficial projects and bodies.

There are 15,300 pokies machines altogether in New Zealand including pokies halls, and casinos, about 90% of them are found outside of casinos.

New Zealand companies can not operate online casinos. However, playing in foreign online casinos is allowed, and players are not prosecuted.

2. Bingo in New Zealand

Bingo in New Zealand
Bingo in New Zealand

Land-based Bingo, also called housie in New Zealand and Australia, is legal, and quite popular. There are numerous bingo halls in the country which are nearly 50. It is difficult to know for sure, most of them don’t have any online presence whatsoever. The Gambling Act governs bingo, including that prizes may only be cash, and the amount of it, which is as per the class of the gambling activity.

Bingo can also be played as class 1 gambling without a license if prizes do not exceed the specified amount, $500, or as a class 2 charity event.

Online bingo is illegal in New Zealand. New Zealand companies can not operate online bingo platforms. However, playing on foreign online bingo platforms is legal. And in lieu of local alternatives, that’s the only option NZ players have.

3. Poker in New Zealand

Poker in New Zealand
Poker in New Zealand

This table game is legal in New Zealand and may be played in licensed casinos or as class 1 or 2 games. However, there is no significant poker club license, therefore, there are no poker clubs in New Zealand. The gambling regulation even specifies the rules, and what types of poker can be played, which luckily includes the most popular 3:  Texas Hold’em, Omaha, and Stud.

Online poker is illegal in New Zealand. No online poker licenses are issued and it is illegal to operate online poker sites of any kind within Australia. However, it is not illegal for locals to play on foreign online poker sites, many of which are available from New Zealand.

4. Sports betting in New Zealand

Sports betting in New Zealand
Sports betting in New Zealand

It is also legal in New Zealand. However, it is the monopoly of TAB NZ (of the New Zealand Racing Board). Sports betting is regulated by the Racing Industry Act 2020.

Licenses are not issued to private bookmakers.

Online sports betting is also allowed, and it is similarly a monopoly of TAB New Zealand. Additionally, locals are also free to use foreign online sports betting platforms due to the quirks of the NZ legal system. These are generally superior, and offer significantly more sports to bet on, with better odds, and have better promotions, free bets, etc. They usually have poker and casino games as well.

5. Lottery in New Zealand

Lottery in New Zealand
Lottery in New Zealand

The lottery is also legal in New Zealand. And it is the monopoly of the state-owned Lotto NZ (of the Lotteries Commission). You can also play the online lottery is also legal, and it is similarly a monopoly.

6. Bitcoin, Cryptocurrency Gambling in New Zealand

Bitcoin, Cryptocurrency Gambling in New Zealand
Bitcoin, Cryptocurrency Gambling in New Zealand

Cryptocurrencies are not accepted as currency in New Zealand, but contract and tax laws apply to cryptocurrency, which means you have to pay taxes on your bitcoin earnings. As cryptocurrencies are not recognized as currency, therefore, land-based gambling establishments in NZ do not accept them.

Bitcoin gambling is not particularly regulated. There is no legislation regarding the use of cryptocurrencies in the context of gambling.

Synopsis

These are the basic details that as a gambler from New Zealand you must be aware of! This will help you know exactly the history of gambling in New Zealand and also the advancement and current situation of gambling.