When you think of the American casino scene, you may picture the bright lights of Las Vegas. And this is because the Vegas gambling scene boasts a unique history and status in the gaming world. But did you know that there was a period of time where New Jersey gambling towered over the state of Nevada?
Atlantic City, the heart of the NJ online casino scene, has a colorful and dramatic history. And this history has led to the birth of many operating casino websites. Below, you will find a list of NJ online casinos that are currently available to play.
History of NJ Online Casinos
Before we talk about what is now - we should first address the past. And there was a time where online casinos in New Jersey looked like a science fiction pipe dream.
After the Second World War, New Jersey's tourist hot spot started to decline. Fewer people visited Atlantic City, crime rose and poverty began to spread.
Iconic hotel's shut down; some were even demolished... but there was hope. And that hope was in a plan to legalize state gambling and build a prospering tourist empire once more.
But 60 percent of New Jersey voters didn't share this same vision. In a referendum held in 1974, NJ residents voted against the plans. But why? Fears of crime spreading and increased corruption were among the chief concerns.
A revised bill published in 1976 sought to address these concerns by isolating all casino activity to Atlantic City. In November of the same year, the bill passed by a slim margin.
Two years later, Resorts Hotel Casino opened its doors to the public. This historic launch made Resorts the first casino to launch outside the state of Nevada. And since it's opening in 1978, Resorts still operates from the very same location.
But did the introduction of casino ease the economic pressures of the city and state? In short: yes! Tourists flocked to the glistening lights of the new gambling mecca. Caesars, Golden Nugget, Tropicana... Casinos seemed to sprout up from the Boardwalk to entertain thrill seekers.
President Donald Trump's casino empire would also begin to flourish here. In fact; he was one of the main ingredients to Atlantic Cities surging popularity. Not only did he bring four Mike Tyson fights to NJ - he even brought the spectacle of Wrestlemania too.
Casino revenues began to climb and climb. Billions of dollars were finally reinvigorating the city. By 1998, revenues crossed over the $4 billion mark. The opening of the luxurious Borgata Hotel Casino & Spa continued to provide prosperity. The gambling bill of 1976 seemed like a masterstroke.
But the good times were coming to an end.
After the millennium, a string of casino closure and high profile economic casualties followed. The Atlantic Club, Showboat and all three of Trump's casinos shuttered their doors. Some rebranded as new casino hotels, others removed the casino element completely. Some of them even became residential areas and nursing homes.
It was a dark time for New Jersey gambling.
But this series of events would be a precursor for the eventual booming NJ online casinos scene.
NJ Online Casinos: The Present
In February 2013, a bill passed that permitted online gambling in the state of New Jersey. In essence, the bill almost echoed the legalization of gambling back in 1976. An ailing industry and shared hopes to revive the economy - the parallels were undeniable.
The Senate signed off the bill with an overwhelming 35-1 vote. Atlantic City casinos were now able to offer legal NJ online casino websites. To operate said websites, the casinos would need to ensure a couple of things. One: Only casinos located within Atlantic City could offer gambling services.
Two: Casinos that offer gambling services online would have to have their equipment located in the city too. That would also mean that computer servers would have to be on site. And finally three: An online casino would need licensing from their land-based counterpart.
But has the lengthy and painful legalization of online gambling in Atlantic City actually worked? Early signs seem to all point towards yes; revenues are once again increasing. After ten years of financial woes, casinos are starting to make money again.
But more impressive than this? New land-based casinos are starting to re-enter the market. In 2018, the much troubled and expensive Revel became the Ocean Resort Casino; a 1,000+ room super resort. The casino-hotel boasts no less than 2,000 slots and 100 table games. And thanks to the recent approval of sports betting in the state, full bookmaker options are also available.
To coincide with their opening, they also launched an online casino. Ocean Resorts Online Casino currently offers over 100 online slots and table games.
And the new casinos continue to launch in AC. Trump's mega-failure, the Taj Mahal, reportedly cost over $1 billion. But it was sold for just $50 million to the Seminole Tribe of Florida. They rebranded the hotel as the Hard Rock Hotel & Casino Atlantic City. Opened in 2018, the casino hotel offers over 2,000+ rooms and over 20 restaurants.
And like Ocean Resorts, Hard Rock launched an online casino to coincide with their land-based opening. Hard Rock Online Casino NJ boasts over 450 slots and a range of table games. The website is also home to the Wheel of Rock, a rewards scheme that lets patrons net extra free spins and bonuses.
Revenues increasing, new attractions opening... The future looks bright for NJ online casinos. And the launch of Ocean Resorts and Hard Rock Casino Online will be an interesting test. Will the casinos flourish together with their online counterparts? Or is there enough room in New Jersey for this kind of growth? We shall soon see.
NJ Online Casinos FAQ
Are NJ online casinos legal?
Yes! Thanks to the 2013 online gambling bill, casinos can offer legal online gambling. As long as you live in New Jersey, you can play legal NJ online slots and games.
Which is the best NJ online casino?
Each site offers a variety of different features and services. You will find different promotions, loyalty schemes and even welcome bonuses. Truth is - there's no correct answer! We recommend signing up and test driving as many sites as you can. Many of the brands offer no deposit bonuses; this means you can try the site for free.
Where can I find an NJ online casino list?
Looking for all the online casinos available in New Jersey? Scroll to the top of the page and you will find every online casino available to East Coast residents.
Are NJ online casinos safe and secure?
Yes, player protection is a core concern for New Jersey casinos. That's why you will only find cutting-edge encryption and the most secure payment methods. If you choose to play at an NJ online casino, rest assured your details are safe.