Published On: Thu, Aug 11th, 2016

Understanding Gambling in Florida


Florida is fast becoming a popular gambling location in the United States, but like other states in the country, the gambling laws aren’t clearly defined. It is against the law for a company to operate a commercial casino. A commercial casino is one that serves to make profit, which to be honest, is the objective of casinos to start with. However, the law does not stop there, and there are many gaps which provide individuals with wealth opportunities. It is these gaps that have been exploited to make Florida one of the gambling capitals in the US.

Indian Casinos

Indian gaming regulations permit some tribes to register and operate casinos, and similar gambling businesses. They span the length of the country, and there are a good number in Florida. The biggest Indian casino in Florida is the Seminole Hard Rock Casino and Hotel in Hollywood.

There are only two native Indian tribes in Florida; the Seminole is an Indian clan of about 2000 people, they operate six different casinos in the state, as well as Hard Rock Casino and Hotel in Tampa. The second Indian tribe is the Miccosukee Tribe, which is a close relative of the Seminole and consists of hundreds of members. They are renowned for sponsoring sporting and gaming competitions.

The Seminole tribe agreed to a contract which permits them to use Class III gaming machines in their casinos, such as blackjack, pai gow poker, three card poker, baccarat and more. The Miccosukee operate Class II gaming equipment like bingo, and other luck-inspired number games.

The minimum gambling age is 18 years, but players must be 21 years to play the electronic machines because they are addictive.

Casino Cruises

One way to circumvent local laws is by taking your casino into the sea where laws are no longer applicable. This may sound quite shrewd to observers, but the truth is that American casinos have been doing so for several decades. The boats are equipped with table games and slot machines- mind you, these aren’t ordinary boats, but plush yachts with many floors and facilities. They are a favorite among tourists who love to sight-see as they gamble away their vacation budget.

The games on each boat vary, but the bigger the boat, the more the offering. In fact, some offer gaming on bingo sites affiliated to them whilst aboard. The bingo games in particular are a big hit among adults and teenagers already used to playing bingo. The cruises allow them to play different variants of bingo against people from different backgrounds.

A lot of companies in Florida provide this service, and many of them (even celebrity cruises) run dozens of yachts and operate from the open seas. Legal gambling ages apply on the boats, but you must be 21 years to drink at the bar. Photo identification is used to verify age.

Race Tracks and Race Books

Two popular gambling activities in the state are Greyhound racing and horse racing, and you haven’t really experienced Florida gambling if you are yet to win or lose money on a dog race. You will be likely recommended one of these when you discuss things to do with the average local. The sun-kissed grounds of Florida are littered with numerous race tracks, and they promise an exciting experience for both men and women.

Casinos contain race books and TV monitors where you can watch your races, and rows of form information in isolated rooms to keep tabs on your bets. But for a genuine racing experience, visit a real race track and enjoy the sporting thrill first-hand.

Florida is a gambling-friendly state. In addition to the points noted above, it is also one of a few state in the US where lotteries are legal. Poker, generally noted as a game of talent, can be played in both casinos and yachts. Florida is home to many poker professionals and amateurs.

So if you enjoy gambling, lovely sunsets, scenic golden beaches, and nicely tanned bodies, grab the next flight to Florida, because you will get no better elsewhere.

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  1. Florida has a compact, currently under litigation, but the Seminole Tribe has been very beneficial for State tourism. And they could do even more, if the compact were amended to include the popular American game of Craps, and the most played Europe game, Roulette. So, first Florida needs to come to terms with the Tribe and let them complete their proposed, primarily hotel, expansions.
    Another issue is slots at pari-mutual’s, which helps underwrite a dying sport, Greyhound Racing, that is doing very little to attract new visitors to the State. Horse Racing is still a viable attraction, and slots are needed to allow the tracks to compete with states that have added slots, and even table games, to their operations. But the State didn’t need to reduce the tax rate from the 50% level; although some of the tax revenue needs to go to Tampa Bay Downs, where slots could nullify the Seminole compact.
    When looking at the kind of impacts that true destination resorts, with casinos, can bring; we need to look at Singapore. There, a Country opposed to casino gaming, wanted to improve their international visitor arrivals, and approved 2 destination casinos, that opened in 2010. One, by LV Sands, was a convention resort, with 1.3 million feet of meeting and exhibit space, an 800 thousand square foot retail center, a museum and 2,500 rooms. The 2nd. was a family resort, with a Universal Studio’s ride park, a water park, an Aquarium and 1,500 rooms. Since the casino resorts opened, Singapore’s International arrivals have increased by over 6 million visitors, annually) over the 9.5 million that visited in 2009 (a 60% increase). And the hotels with approximately 50,000 rooms, that existed before the casinos arrived, have seen their occupancies and average rates substantially improved.
    For Florida, the question is to find out if there are resort areas in the State that need more than beaches and a year round temperate climate to attract out of state visitors. And if the answer is yes, then casino gaming might be an appropriate addition. More and more adult visitors, who, unlike their children in school, are available to travel 12 months a year; and may expect to find a different kind of evening entertainment, like casino gaming; that is offered in many competing destinations.

  2. Terry Terril says:

    In a little known slice of gambling history it is recorded that the churches helped lead the countries gambling revival in the 1930’s. With the use of bingo, raffles and Monte Carlo casino nights churches had an important source of fundraising. In 1938 a Gallup poll showed that more people gambled at church games than at any other form of legal or illegal gambling.

    It seems that the notion of the devil having a hand in making people gamble has little factual support.

    So what do the gamblers want when it comes to gambling games and activities? How should these opportunities be provided to them and by whom?

    A large majority of the people participate in gambling. People have been gambling for thousands of years and every indication is they will be gambling for thousands of years to come. The difficult part here is that the government has taken control of the gambling venues trying to contain, moderate, and fix the limits of gambling, while maximizing their profits. This has very little to do with any perceived moral codes and a lot to do with financial windfalls. Gambling has become big business.

    What should the gamblers be expecting from their government? Should they accept the “take it or leave it” proposition they currently have or should they strive for a better offer? Today the gamblers are an unorganized voting block; but it looks as if that might be changing. They can have a political impact at some point. Currently the providers and their lobbyist have all the influence but changes are in the air. Why isn’t the government trying to provide the best gaming environment for its citizens, and not that of big business?

    The Florida legislature has handed over part of the gambling business to a selected few individuals who they have partnered with for a cut of the action. They have assumed ownership of the largest operation, the Florida Lottery.

    Many gamblers have asked the question; “why doesn’t the government partner with us and provide a fair and reasonable process where we can enjoy our chosen recreational activity.” “Why have they handed us over to others to be fleeced of our recreational dollar?”

    A lot of Gamblers feel they should be free to play the games they like, in places that are convenient, and with a reasonable set of rules established for play. The question has been asked; “If it’s legal for me to play a slot machine or poker games at the local pari-mutuel, why can’t I play the same slot or poker game over at the mall?”

  3. This comment deals with the group No Casinos. We all know this group is being funded by Disney and Universal. They say that allowing gambling in Florida will destroy Florida as a family vacation spot. Let’s get this straight. Disney and this group state they are for family values. Yet Disney just partnered with Draft Kings, the leader in Fantasy Sports Betting. What a deception to the public. Disney and Universal are only concerned in making money, period. There is no moral issue or any other issue than greed. Why do I say this. Well ESPN just got done having a 28 hour marathon saying that it was to promote fantasy sports. Yeah, right. Wrong. They did it to make money for there exclusive partner Draft kings, who of course will no doubt share revenue. I am not against what Disney is trying to do in preserving there situation in the Orlando area. But they have no right to control this state and the will of the people. Thank you

  4. B A Robbins says:

    What is the future of the above as they were outlawed a couple of years back? Any pending legislation for their return? Thx.

  5. Alisha Ross says:

    An impressive share! I have just forwarded this onto a coworker who had been doing a little
    homework on this. And he actually ordered me dinner simply because
    I found it for him… lol. So allow me to reword this….
    Thank YOU for the meal!! But yeah, thanks for spending some time to discuss
    this topic here on your blog.

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