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The Best Malta Casino Sites in 2022

The Malta Gaming Authority was one of the first licensing bodies to appear online. As most of you will know, today, Malta casino sites are literally everywhere. An MGA license is considered safe and it opens up the doors to a long list of regions.

These are some of the many aspects that we’ll take a closer look at in our Malta casino guide. For those looking to jump right in, here’s our top casino Malta list

Top Malta Casino Sites

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Over the years, Malta has become somewhat of a hub within the gaming industry. We have seen iGaming giants including the likes of LeoVegas, bet365 and even Mr Green move their operations to the small island. What's more, our Malta casino listing continues to grow.

Gaming operators are setting up across the island, with the main areas being St. Julians, Portomaso and even Qawra. With so many Malta casino license holders out there, choosing the right gambling site for you can end up being a difficult task. Luckily we have come up with a list of the best online casinos Malta has to offer. These are some of the most trustworthy sites and they also offer some great bonuses for both new players and existing ones.

New Casino Sites - Malta

As mentioned previously, the gambling industry is on the rise and with this, so is the demand for a Malta casino licence. We are seeing new Malta casino sites being launched regularly. Although some players may shy away from newcomers for obvious reasons, the best ones can offer many perks.

New Malta casino sites are looking to stand out. They are competing with top online casinos that have had years to build a reputation for themselves. Be it in the form of free spins or match deposit bonuses, you can expect some of the best first deposit offers for new players out there. Some of the welcome bonus offers include no deposit bonuses. For more details on the best new casinos Malta has to offer we suggest checking back to our dedicated page for newcomer sites.

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New Malta casino sites are looking to stand out. They are competing with top online casinos that have had years to build a reputation for themselves. Be it in the form of free spins or match deposit bonuses, you can expect some of the best first deposit offers for new players out there. Some of the welcome bonus offers include no deposit bonuses. For more details on the best new casinos Malta has to offer we suggest checking back to our dedicated page for newcomer sites.

Malta Gaming Authority Casinos – A Brief History

Malta casinos are licensed by the Malta Gaming Authority, the legislative body governing all gambling activities. It was first set up in 2001 as the Lotteries and Gaming Authority (LGA). They were actually one of the first organisations to devise a set of legal regulations for online sports and gambling procedures. They started off with the Lotteries and Other Games Act (2001) and chapters 400 and 438 of the Laws of Malta. This Gambling Act was the first of many in an effort to regulate the casino Malta market.

2015, saw a rebrand from LGA to MGA, as we know them today. Perhaps this restructuring came about as a result of the move from static land-based casinos, to the dynamic world of iGaming. Thus, we saw the birth of Malta casino sites.

Today, the Maltese Gaming Authority is the official regulator of most forms of gambling services. Whether land-based or online, all Malta-licensed casinos answer to them. Sectors include slot machines as well as all other casino-type games. We have come up with a list of the MGA's regulatory objectives below. All Malta casino sites must adhere to these criteria if they aim to retain their licence.

Main Roles of the Malta Gaming Authority

  • Protection of Minors
  • Licensing of Online Gambling Companies
  • Licensee Monitoring
  • Ensure all Games are kept Fair and Legit
  • Protection of Players Rights (including player funds)
  • Advocates of Responsible Gaming
  • Ensuring that the Gaming Sector has a Positive Impact on Development in Malta

Malta Gaming Authority Structure

Being a regulatory body that deals with important Gambling Laws, it comes as no surprise that the organisation is split up into various boards. We have listed the various sectors below to give a better idea of the structure that Malta casinos must abide by.

  • Board of Governors - Responsible for the strategic development of the Authority
  • Executive Committee - Responsible for achieving the vision devised by the board of Governors. The current Chief Executive Officer is Heathcliff Farrugia who was recently brought in to replace Joseph Cuschieri.
  • Audit Committee - Responsible for overseeing all audit and accounting issues
  • Supervisory Committee - Responsible for reviewing regulatory objectives
  • Fit and Proper Committee - Responsible for ensuring potential licensee is deemed fit and proper to receive a gaming licence.

How to get an MGA license?

As you have probably realised by now, there is a process to becoming a Malta casino. This is an Authority that takes its licensing process seriously and there are a number of steps all applicants will need to follow. Firstly, Malta casino licence applicants will need to decide whether they are applying for a gaming service (Business-to-Consumer) or a critical gaming supply licence (Business-to-Business). 

Types of Malta Gaming Authority Casino Licenses

  • Class 1: It includes games that you are most likely to find in a gambling establishment (slots, table games, keno, craps, video poker etc.), skill games and other online lotteries. A Class 1 operator will be responsible for the risk of repetitive games.
  • Class 2: In this class, you can find fixed odds betting, spread betting and pool betting. A Class 2 gaming operator is responsible for the risk of events one might find in a matchbook.
  • Class 3: In this category, you can find the peer-to-peer, bet exchange, poker network. A Class 3 operator is taking a commission based on a percentage from promoting or betting games.
  • Class 4: This one is special and it allows the licensee to host and govern remote gaming operators, but the licensee itself cannot operate as an operator. A Class 4 licence is mainly for software vendors.

Once gambling operators have decided what class to apply for, they will need to submit all the required information. This documentation will then undergo a series of internal audits by a regulatory panel within the Malta casino licensing authority. Here's an ordered list of the criteria all potential Malta-licensed casinos must live up to if they are looking at getting a gaming industry licence in the region.

Casino Malta Requirements

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  1. Fit & Proper - Assessing the people involved in the finance and management of the operation.
  2. Business Planning - Assessing the business plan, including growth strategies.
  3. Operational & Statutory Requirements - Assessing the capital needed to run the business (including paid-up share capital requirements)
  4. System Review - Once the first 3 steps have been fulfilled, the applicant is given a 60 day period to complete a technical roll-out of the site. During this period, a service provider will carry out a system audit. If everything is in order then the applicant will receive a 10-year licence
  5. Compliance Review - After going live, the online gambling operator must undergo two compliance audits. One needs to be done after a year of being licensed and the other will depend on the compliance plan set by the gaming authority.

One thing to point out at this stage is that if the applicant is not in line with the requirements then they may be required to restart their Malta casino application procedure. Once the site goes live, it can have its online gambling licence suspended or even terminated should it fail to live up to the requirements. 

Are Malta Online Casinos Safe?

Our previous section should already give you an idea of the reliability of Malta-licensed casinos. There's a long list of criteria that needs to be fulfilled and all Malta casinos are subject to regular checks. This is perhaps one of the main reasons why a Maltese license is considered one of the main ones in the gambling industry. The other two big ones are the Curacao and UK Gambling Commission licences. We take a look at how a Malta casino compares to the others in the lists below.

Malta Casinos VS. UK Gambling Commission Online Casinos

  • Player Safety - Whilst casinos in Malta offer some protection to players, the UKGC is taking things to the next level. For instance, all UK-based online casinos must display key terms in any promotion banner.
  • Anti-Money Laundering (AML) - Malta casinos have had issues in the past with AML but have cleaned up their act lately. UKGC casinos, on the other hand, have a clean track record and are constantly looking to improve.
  • Company Reputation - A Gambling Commission licence is the only one that will allow casinos to accept players from the UK. It is considered the most secure the gaming sector has to offer. A Maltese licence opens the door to players from other countries around the world whilst still having a good reputation in terms of its regulatory framework.
  • Responsible Gambling - Once again UKGC online gambling sites come out on top when it comes to efforts to promote responsible gambling. Malta Gaming Authority has partnered with some independent organisations but this does not include the likes of begambleaware.
  • Payment Method Integration - Maltese online casinos work with trustworthy payment providers however UK Gambling Commission casinos are the only ones able to become PayPal approved.
  • Game Providers - Both UKGC and Malta sites must work with reliable software providers. This said the first has even tighter regulations when it comes to this.

Malta Casinos VS. Curacao Licensed Casinos

  • Player Safety - casinos with an online gambling license in Malta offer some kind of player protection whereas the Curacao gaming license is there as a place holder and nothing more.
  • Anti-Money Laundering (AML) - In the past Malta-licensed casinos have suffered some blows regarding AML, but they've have made significant improvements to remedy the situation. Casinos licensed under the government of Curacao, on the other hand, are still the subject of hot disputes.
  • Company Reputation - Curacao offers none, whereas Malta Gaming Authority opens the doors to many casinos in many countries around the world.
  • Responsible Gambling - MGA Partnered with most responsible gambling companies, whereas Curacao gambling sites have been known to fake the seals in their page footers.
  • Payment Method Integration - sites licensed in Malta work with safe and reliable payment providers. Curacao online operators are known to be big fans of cryptocurrencies, which says a lot about their safety systems.
  • Game Providers - Curacao casinos work with the majority of providers, but they have been the one that has pirated casino games in the past. This is unheard of at MGA online gambling operators.

Responsible Gambling Efforts

If you take a look at any casino in Malta then you'll notice that most have a seal from a third-party organisation that deals with problem gambling. GamCare, Gambling Therapy, Gamblers Anonymous, these are a few of the responsible gambling organisations making efforts to help Malta casino players by maintaining a database. Players also have the choice to become self-excluded amongst other support tools.

This is proof that the Malta Gaming Authority is laying out the rules when it comes to responsible gambling. This said though, it is not enforcing these gambling laws to the same extent as the British Gambling Commission. In the United Kingdom, for instance, casinos not registered with Gamstop, risk suspension of their online gambling licence. Not all Malta casinos are in line with this.

All this said the past years have seen the Maltese Gaming Authority turn their focus to responsible gambling. In 2014,  the Responsible Gaming Foundation was launched in efforts to protect Malta casino players. The foundation aims to create awareness on the issue of problem gambling. They also provide support to players at Malta online casinos.

AML and Prevention of Underage Gambling 

Know Your Client (KYC) checks are one of the many regulations Malta casino sites must live up to. Gambling laws state that all players who deposit over €150 in a rolling period of 180 days must verify their identity. The same goes for players over €2300.

A KYC check is to be conducted by the Malta online casino rather than the local authority. Players will need to show proof of identity for starters and this can be in the form of a valid passport, i.d. or driving licence. In addition to this, most Malta casino sites will ask customers for a recent utility bill. This ensures the country of residence also.

The main aims of these checks are to prevent minors from gambling as well as protect the online world against money laundering. Some Malta casino players view these as a nuisance since they can lead to delays in transactions. The truth is that they are in fact essential to ensure a safe gaming environment.

How to Lodge a Complaint against a Malta Online Casino

The MGA is Malta's one-stop-shop for licensing and gaming laws. In comparison to others such as the UK Gambling Commission, who make use of IBAS, they don't outsource the Malta casino complaints procedure. The downside to this is a time-lag in providing feedback on all the complaints they receive.

Until the company starts to increase its staff in this sector, we don't expect to see much improvement at Malta casinos. The good news is that they do realise that this is an issue and have made promises in the past to work on the area. Unfortunately, we have yet to see any actions being taken. 

The good news is that all Malta casino-related complaints are dealt with, eventually. Lodging one is actually the easy part and we have provided a step-by-step approach below.

  1. Navigate to the official Malta Gaming Authority Website.
  2. Click on the 'Support' button in the top right corner of the menu bar.
  3. Select 'Online Gaming Support'.
  4. Fill out the online form by providing all necessary details
  5. If you have any proof in the form of screenshots, be sure to upload them.
  6. We suggest ticking the 'send a copy to my email' box for future reference.
  7. Submit the complaint.

Actions MGA can take following a Complaint

It may take a while to get some feedback on a Malta casino complaint but once the process begins, the matter is taken extremely seriously. Complaints are handled on a case by case basis as it will all depend on what the issue is. If the authority deems that there is reason for further investigation then they will indeed take the necessary steps.

In most cases, this will result in a compliance audit of the Malta online casino. Should any breaches be found, the operator will be informed immediately. Depending on the gravity of the situation, the penalty could be in the form of a fine, suspension or even termination of licence.

malta casinos games online

The Malta casino laws may not be as rigid as the British Gambling Commission but they still do have some gambling regulation. This is something we looked at earlier on. They are looking to find the perfect balance between a pro-gambling attitude whilst keeping players best interests at heart. What this means is that they won't hand out a Malta casino licence to any old software provider. In fact, while Curacao licensed sites are infamous for issues with pirated games, this is almost unheard of at Maltese licensed casino sites. In fact the latter works with reputable brands whose games are subject to regular RNG audits.

Malta casino players can expect some of the top game providers the gambling market has to offer. NetEnt, Microgaming and Play'n GO, these are only a few of the biggest names in the industry and their games are available to play online.

Choose from slots and progressive jackpots as well as table games such as blackjack and roulette. When it comes to online gaming, players at Maltese casinos won't have issues with lack of choice. Let's not forget about live dealer games, they are also available with the likes of Evolution Gaming paving the way.

Best Casino Slots - Malta

As is the case in most jurisdictions, slots tend to come out on top at any given Malta casino. This is why we have come up with a table of the most popular titles.

Above are some casino slots Malta favourites. But there are literally thousands to choose from and most are available at MGA licensed casinos. Check out our full list of slots on our reviews page.

Malta Casino Payment Methods

Payment options are a bit part of online gambling. Luckily when it comes to a Malta online casino, the majority work with reputable banking options. This is a step up from Curacao operators who tend to promote methods that retain anonymity.

The regular suspects at Malta casinos include e-wallets such as Skrill, Neteller and ecoPayz as well as all major debit and credit cards. Bank transfers have also been integrated into most sites. Some of the more innovative payment options such as Echecks have yet to be added to Malta casino payment portfolios. In addition to this, the UK favourite PayPal is not available to Malta casino players. All this said there is still a wide range to choose from.

Pros & Cons of Malta Casino Sites

At this stage, you should have a better idea of the legal side to Malta casino sites. We also discussed other important elements such as safety. In case you still aren't convinced, we'll leave you with a table of advantages and disadvantages.

Malta Casinos FAQ

How many casinos are in Malta?
The number of Malta casinos is on the rise. As things stand we have reviewed over 100 sites with an MGA licence. Check out our top-rated Malta casino list for the ones that we recommend joining. We would also suggest reading our full reviews for further details.
Can you gamble in Malta?
Yes. The Malta casino market was first regulated in 2001 under the Lotteries and Other Games Act. As mentioned earlier on, today all gambling operations are overseen by the Malta Gaming Authority. It is legal to play both online and at land-based casinos in Malta.
Why are online casinos based in Malta?
One of the criteria for becoming MGA licensed dictates that operators must move their resources to the island. This is why many Malta online casinos are based there. We provide the full list of MGA requirements earlier on.
Do Malta Gaming licensees offer live casino games online?
Yes. Most Malta casinos have a live dealer section. Top names include the likes of NetEnt live and Evolution Gaming. We provide more information on casino games and software providers earlier on.
Meet the Author
As the Editor-in-Chief of CasinoCountdown, I'm always on the hunt for fresh casinos and slots. After all, it's my job to ensure you have the facts you need to make the right online gaming decisions for you. Once I find something I think you'll like, I always try it out myself. Only the best sites and games are given my seal of approval. You'll also find me sharing my casino knowledge on our guide and strategy pages. With many years of experience in the iGaming sector, I'm sure I can help you.