Everything about PAGCOR
The Philippines is one of the fastest-growing destinations when it comes to gambling and related entertainment. You can easily observe, the level of interest and excitement in this Southeast Asian country by taking a look at the number of casinos and hotels, that operate in major cities and economic zones.
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Also, there’s a growing number of online casinos that are eyeing the Philippines for the license and even as a base for their design operations. On the surface, it seems players and stakeholders should brace for exciting times ahead. But is this really the case, and in the Philippines completely ready for all types of gambling?
If you a player or simply committed to the industry, you should be aware of the existing rules and laws that govern the market. When it comes to all forms of gambling, the Philippines offers a mixed set of rules which require careful understanding and appreciation. When it comes to gambling laws and rules, gaming in the country is approached in two ways.
One, it can be understood from the perspective of the Philippine Amusement and Gaming Corporation or PAGCOR, the country’s main office that regulates land-based gaming. Two, gambling can be appreciated through the participation of Cagayan Special Economic Zone and Freeport or Cagayan Freeport. In this article, we take a look at the differences between the rules and why it matters to online gaming.
PAGOR Rules for Casinos and Players
As a player or even operator, it’s best to understand what is PAGCOR and how it fits into the industry. In the Philippines, PAGCOR is the main office assigned to regulate gambling and the participation of Filipino players. If you are from the Philippines, you are allowed to play at casinos, e Games PAGCOR sites, and hotels provided that are licensed and approved by PAGCOR. This casino in the Philippines should bear the seal of the office and abides by the rules set forth of gambling.
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Traditionally, you will find these casinos in major cities and hotels and in a number of economic zones of the country. Under the rules, a PAGCOR casino, is only mandated to accept locals for play within the facility and not for the online gaming environment. The main reason for this is the existing laws of the country that prohibit these casinos from accepting wagers from the players from the Philippines to enjoy the games online.
A careful reading of the laws is important here since the prohibition focuses on the operator and not the player. This means that a Filipino player can still participate in online gambling provided that the website has no connection with the Philippines and not licensed in the country. More importantly, you can play at leading online casinos that specifically say that they accept players from the Philippines. As a player from the Philippines, you should know how to check if the casino lists the country as one of its restricted territories.
Cagayan Freeport and Its Rules on Gambling
The other forms of gambling in the country fall under the control of the Cagayan Freeport. Located in an economic zone, the Cagayan Freeport allows some casinos to offer gambling services to tourists. Also, Cagayan is the only jurisdiction in Asia that offers licenses to online casinos. Even though these casinos cannot provide the games and services to players from the Philippines, they can still cater to the needs of players from other parts of the region.
As one of the approving regulations in the country, Cagayan makes sure that the games and services of the casinos pass stringent quality and security requirements. As a matter of policy, the websites of these operators should be fully encrypted by SSL encryption. The websites should also deliver premium customer support when it comes to attending to the payments and requests of players. In short, when one uses the facility that has been licensed in Cagayan, the player can also count on a stress-free casino experience.
Age Limit for Players Who Want to Participate in Gambling
The Philippines is known for a number of games that involve the betting of money. And some of these games are illegal in nature or not fully covered by both PAGCOR and Cagayan Freeport. Also, there are illegal games then that managed to gain wide acceptance including jueteng, a numbers game. Today, locals can take part in draws and get jueteng tips to win without the need to visit a casino or follow certain regulations. However, playing at casinos sanctioned by PAGCOR is a different thing. Here, you should be at least 21 years old to play and should visit the facility that’s approved by the office.
How Can I Play and Participate in Legal Online Casinos?
If you are from the Philippines, the best approach to take is to research first the options available to you. One thing that you can do is to conduct a basic Google search and find the different online casinos that accept players from the Philippines. When doing your search, you need to use a number of parameters that can help you narrow down your search. We highly recommend that you check out an online casino, that is not just licensed but offers the best bonuses for Filipino players.
To check if you can play and sign up, you can visit the Terms and Conditions page and read about the list of ‘Restricted Countries’. In some casinos, you will be instantly barred from accessing the website if the country is part of the restricted list. If you want to be sure in your choices, we highly recommend that you check out the list of top online casinos that allow local players. We review the best online casinos that deliver premium promotions and services.
Note on Illegal Games in the Philippines
The government is strict when it comes to games that can be played. For example, a number of card games that are often played on the streets are now illegal. ‘Tong its’, a rummy-type of the game played using a deck of cards, is now deemed illegal in the country. If the authorities catch you playing the game outside of your home, then you will be arrested and charged. Jueteng, another form of keno, is also illegal in the country.
However, this type of game gained mainstream acceptance in the last few years when a separate version of the game called ‘Small Town Lottery’ or STL has been introduced. There is a government crackdown on illegal gambling activities in the country so it’s best to know the rules and laws. If you want a stress-free way of playing the games, then consider only the legal and authorized gaming places in the country.
Can You Play Using the Local Currency?
Yes, you can also play for real money using Philippines Pesos (Php) as your preferred currency. However, you will notice that only a small number of top casinos accept this currency in the cashier section. But this should not stop you from playing at the best online casinos in the market. If the casino does not accept Php, then your option is to convert first your local currency into US dollar, Euro, or any acceptable currency.
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The only drawback here is that you will need to pay a certain conversion fee. And the fee that you will cover will depend on the casino. We highly recommend that you check your options first before you play online.
💰 What is the main function of PAGCOR?
The main function of PAGCOR is to regulate and develop the gaming industry in the Philippines.
⚖️ Is online gambling in the Philippines legal?
Yes. There are no specific laws that prohibit online gambling, therefore it is legal.
🎰 Are all online casinos legal in the Philippines?
No. All online casinos need to have a legitimate license to operate in the Philippines.
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