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Betting in Slovakia

Published on: 08/08/2016

The Slovak Republic, also known as Slovakia is located in the East of Europe. The Parliamentary Republic is bordered by the Czech Republic, Poland, Austria, Hungary and Ukraine. Slovakia’s population exceeds 5 million, Slovak is the official language, and the nation uses the Euro as its official currency.

From 1918, Slovakia and Czechoslovakia were united, then in 1968, the Soviet Union invaded and took control of the area. After the fall of the iron curtain in 1989, democracy replaced communism which led to Slovakia and Czechoslovakia separating and each becoming Republican nations in their own right.

Today, Slovakian horse racing is managed by the Turf Direktorium Für Die Slowakei, which is affiliated with the France-based International Federation of Horseracing Authorities. The sport has been present in Slovakia since the 1840s, when the first Conditions Race was hosted by the Racing Association. In 1868, the first hippodrome was built, in the country’s capital of Bratislava, and horse breeding quickly turned into a profitable undertaking for the nation.

In the present day, the Zavodisko Bratislava Horsetrack is home to thoroughbred horse racing. The track generates a pari-mutuel income in excess of €101,622 per annum (2010), of which 65% is paid out to bettors. Punters are able to place bets on local events outside of the track at licensed bookies.

Shortly after the revolution, a public limited company called Casinos Slovakia was established and opened its first casino in 1990. Today at least twenty licensed casinos can be found throughout the country, many of which are located in Bratislava. A prime example of the type of gaming hall on offer in Slovakia is the Casino Café Reduta. The establishment is open for business from 1pm and closes at 4pm. There is plenty of room for its 14 poker and games tables, and its array of slot machines that attract both the locals and tourists. As is often the case, customers must be 18 years of age or above to play. The Slovakian cities of Nitra, Skalica, Kosice, Kezmarok, Zilina, Ziar, Trnava and Piestany all have gambling facilities. Three casinos are provided by the Olympic Entertainment Group and another 12 casinos operate through the Merkur brand. There are many licensed gambling shops where punters can place fixed odds bets on a variety of international and local sporting events. It is completely legal for coffee shops and pubs to facilitate games machines. Poker games such as Texas Hold’em have recently become popular in Slovakia.

Under the direction of a monopoly known as TIPOS, Slovakia’s National Lottery has been running since the early 90s. Its main office is based in the capital Bratislava, and all profits are forwarded to the Ministry of Finance. The company also operates the Tipos Bingo, four variants of Instant Lotteries and three types of Keno. Numerous shops sell tickets. Alternatively, purchases can be made online or mobile phone.

TIPOS almost exclusively provides internet gambling opportunities for the Slovakian citizens. Virtual casinos are not available but there is a dot-SK sportsbook in operation which is managed by a company called Tipsport. Currently in Slovakia there are no rules or regulations to prohibit Slovakian people from wagering on off-shore gambling web sites.

There are roughly 450 online sportsbooks who welcome play from the Slovakian citizens, and a few offer assistance using the Slovakian language, including Bwin and Ladbrokes.

Slovakia’s citizens carry out transactions using the Euro - which is the nation’s official currency - and transactions can be made using prepaid cards or credit and debit cards, as well as eWallets.