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Tennessee Casinos & Gambling

Tennessee Regulated Gambling:

Lottery 2002

Charitable Gaming 2010

Fantasy Contests 2016

Online Sports Betting 2020

Gambling Age in Tennessee:

Fantasy Contests/Charitable Gaming/Lottery 18+

Online Sports Betting 21+

Tennessee Casinos:

None

Tennessee

Online Gambling & Casinos in Tennessee

Tennessee is not the most liberal of gambling states. In fact, it wasn’t until the 21st century that The Volunteer State began to see most of the meaningful state constitutional amendments. This started with the state lottery in 2002, followed by charitable gaming, fantasy contests, and online sports betting.

Interestingly, pari-mutuel wagering has not been available in Tennessee since 2015. Furthermore, there are no land-based casinos (like Georgia to the southeast border). However, the surrounding states have land-based casinos, which may serve as a possible workaround solution for Tennessee players. Unfortunately, this also means a long drive. Of course, this is not always practical just to play a few rounds of slots or table games.

The ‘Plan B’ for some players has been to play at offshore online casinos. However, it’s important to note that Tennessee has not approved this practice. In our article below, we discuss gambling options in the state and where you can find the best casinos and bonuses in Tennessee online.

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Best New Casinos in Tennessee

Although there are no land-based casino games in Tennessee, that doesn’t mean that these are not available online. The best new casinos in Tennessee, like the ones below, accept Bitcoins and US dollars for fast, safe, and secure deposits and withdrawals.

Furthermore, these Bitcoin casinos offer a range of table games, online slots, specialty games, and live dealer games from providers like Realtime Gaming, Rival Games, ViG, etc. New players can also enjoy a generous welcome bonus. In contrast, regular players can find attractive bonuses, tournaments, loyalty points, VIP programs, and more. Read all about it in our handy casino reviews for each one listed.

Best Bonuses in Tennessee Casinos

The best bonuses in Tennessee casinos, like the ones below, typically welcome new players from Tennessee with a fantastic match deposit bonus and free spins. Some may even offer a signup no deposit bonus before making the first deposit. Regardless, you can rest assured that each bonus below offers fair bonus T&Cs and playthrough wagering requirements.

Tennessee Gambling Overview

Tennessee is considered one of 5 states with the lowest tax burden on residents, leaving sales tax as the primary generator of revenue for the state. Over 40% of Tennessee is covered in farmland, making agriculture an important industry. Still, it has a diversified economy driven by healthcare, transportation, banking & finance, power generation, energy, and tourism.

The culture is relatively conservative with limited forms of authorized gambling: a state lottery, charitable gaming (no casino-style games), fantasy contests, and online sports betting.

Fantasy Contests

According to The Fantasy Sports Act of 2016, operators must be licensed by the Division of Charitable Solicitations and Gaming. Operators that do not charge a fee while offering daily and season-long contests are exempt from this requirement. There are currently 8 licensed fantasy sports operators in Tennessee, like DraftKings, FanDuel, and Yahoo. These operators are prohibited from offering contests on college, high school, or sporting events involving minors.

State Lottery

The Tennessee Lottery is a huge revenue generator, contributing over $6 billion to state coffers since inception. Available games include instant play, with tickets selling from as little as $1 to as much as $30. The other type of lottery game is the drawing-style, including state and multistate tickets (Cash for Life, Mega Millions, and Powerball). Tickets can be purchased from over 5,000 authorized retailers throughout Tennessee. These include gas stations, convenience stores, grocery stores, restaurants, barbershops, beauty shops, and electronics stores.

Sports Betting

Although Tennessee does not have any physical facilities that offer a retail sportsbook, it does allow online sports betting using a mobile app or online. The sports betting market in Tennessee is huge, exceeding $1 billion in April 2021 alone. The activity is overseen by the Tennessee Education Lottery (TEL).

Approved operators include BetMGM, Crown TN Gaming (DraftKings), WSI US, Betfair Interactive US (FanDuel), American Wagering, Inc., Tennessee Action 24/7, and Churchill Downs Interactive Gaming. Bets on amateur sports, including high school and youth leagues, unless stated otherwise, are prohibited.

Charitable Gaming

The Tennessee Nonprofit Gaming Law allows a qualifying organization to hold a game of chance event annually for fundraising. The state defines charitable organizations as religious, patriarch, educational, benevolent, voluntary health, and benefits for law enforcement, firefighters, or public safety persons.

Authorized events include bingos, raffles, cakewheels, cakewalks, and reverse raffles. All other gambling, such as video lotteries, pull tabs, punchboards, instant and online lotteries, are prohibited. The organization must have been in existence for five years or more or meet the statutory requirements of the non-profit gaming law.

Tennessee Gambling History

In the 1800s, Tennessee had several racetracks, becoming a center for horse racing and breeding in the United States. By 1839 the number of state racetracks had exceeded 10. Despite this rich history of horse racing, pari-mutuel wagering was outlawed in 1905. It wasn’t until 1987 that The Racing Control Act legalized pari-mutuel wagering and created a racing commission. Interestingly, the commission didn’t last long as the legislature failed to renew it the following year. In April 2015, the Racing Act was repealed to relaunch a more practical version. In the following years, several Bills were introduced, yet none have been successful. In the last few years, pari-mutuel wagering authorization was believed to be a longshot given Gov. Bill Lee’s stated opposition to expanded gambling back in 2019.

The Tennessee lottery was created in 2002 after a constitutional amendment was ratified.

Fantasy sports were authorized and regulated in December 2016 by the Fantasy Sports Act. This Act governs daily and season-long fantasy sports contests in which players pay an entry fee.

The Tennessee Sports Gaming Act (HB0001 and SB0016) to authorize online sports betting was approved on June 4, 2019. Although Gov. Bill Lee had opposed sports betting, he made no attempt to stop it. Sports betting eventually went live in November 2020. Among the first operators to be approved were industry giants DraftKings, FanDuel, BetMGM, and Tennessee Action 24/7.

In the first quarter of 2021, two Bills HB1496 and SB1159 were filed to establish the Tennessee horse racing commission and regulate pari-mutuel wagering and horse racing. While the Senate Bill passed on second consideration, the House Bill failed in the subcommittee in March 2021.

Tennessee Gambling FAQ

What is the legal gambling age in Tennessee?

The Tennessee legal gambling age to purchase lottery tickets, participate in charitable gaming or fantasy contests is 18 and over. Players must be 21 and over to participate in online sports betting.

Can I buy lottery tickets online in Tennessee?

No, Tennessee players cannot purchase lottery tickets online. However, they can readily purchase tickets at over 5,000 authorized retail outlets. Tickets include both scratch-offs and draw-style.

Can I find Vegas-style casino games in Tennessee?

Tennessee has no authorized land-based casinos nor authorized casino-style slots, card, wheel or dice games, et cetera.

Is sports betting legal in Tennessee?

Yes, sports betting online and using a mobile app is authorized and regulated in Tennessee. No land-based locations offer a retail sportsbook in the state.

Is online gambling legal in Tennessee?

Except for online sports betting, all online gambling in Tennessee is prohibited.

Are fantasy sports contests authorized and regulated in Tennessee?

Yes, operators that offer DFS and season-long fantasy contests for an entry fee must be authorized and regulated in Tennessee. Operators include fantasy giants Yahoo, DraftKings, and FanDuel.

Can I make pari-mutuel bets on horse races in Tennessee?

Tennessee has yet to authorize and regulate pari-mutuel wagering and horse racing in the state after repealing the law in 2015.

Conclusion

Tennessee is, unfortunately, the wrong state for players who enjoy the thrill of playing at a land-based casino. Although The Volunteer State legally allows some forms of gambling, Vegas-style land-based casinos are not one of them. While you could theoretically drive to neighboring states, this hardly seems practical. This is why offshore online casinos have become a reality for Tennessee players looking to enjoy their favorite slots and table games.

Suppose you are interested in playing at an offshore online casino. In that case, we suggest you browse through our new casino and bonus recommendations above. Also, because gambling laws can change, we invite you to revisit us soon.

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