The Best UKGC Licensed Casinos in 2023
- Written By Kay Jones
- Checked by Thomas Williams
UKGC licensed casinos are sought by both UK and non-UK players. In fact, for many of you, the UK Gambling Commission can be considered the most reputable licensing authority in the world.
The reasons for this are plenty, and they are related to security, fair play and player protection. Safety isn't exactly in question at UKGC casinos. But before we jump to what the Gambling Commission is all about, we've given you a list of top casinos with this licence.
Top 19 UKGC Licensed Casinos Online
- Holds reputable licences
- iOS and Android apps
- Regular promotions and offers
- Deposit and Wager £10, Get 100 Free Spins
- Valuable welcome bonus
- High quality games library
- In-depth loyalty program
- Deposit £10, get up to 500 Free Spins
- Unique Duelz battle feature
- PayPal accepted
- Excellent welcome offer
- 100% up to £100 + 100 Spins
- Part of a widely trusted iGaming brand
- Good choice of slots
- Trusted payment methods
- 200% up to £20 + 100 Spins
- Valuable welcome offer
- Variety of payment options
- Over 1000 slots
- up to £200 + 100 Spins
- Over 2000 games
- PayPal accepted
- Excellent loyalty program
- 100% up to 300€ + 20 Spins
- 100% up to £100 + 20 Spins
- Huge range of software providers
- Local payment methods
- Valuable welcome bonus
- 121% up to 300€
- 121% up to £100
- Valuable welcome bonus
- Trusted reuptation in iGaming
- Excellent mobile apps
- Stake £10, Get up to 200 Free Spins
- Ran by reputable 888 brand
- Play via iOS or Android app
- VIP rewards and bonuses
- up to 1500€
- 77 Spins
- up to £200
- Fair wagering requirements
- Accepts PayPal deposits
- Updated slots catalog
- up to £100 + 100 Spins
- up to $800 + 100 Spins
|As of 14th April 2020, players from the UK are no longer allowed to make credit card transactions at online casinos. Debit card deposits and withdrawals are still accepted.|
|🔝-> back to our top UKGC casinos|
|🔍-> UKGC vs Non UKGC casinos|
|🔒-> responsible gambling at UKGC casinos|
|🚨-> how the UKGC handles breaches|
|❓-> UKGC licensed casinos FAQs|
The Gambling Commission has hundreds of issued licences to date, so the number of UKGC licensed casinos may be too high to sift through at once. This is why we’ve done the homework for you and singled out those at the top of the food chain. We also provide a full list of 100+ UKGC licensed casino reviews at the bottom of this page.
How to Spot a UKGC Licensed Casino?
Spotting a UKGC Licensed casino is a few seconds job for any experienced player. Of course, we’re aware that many of you reading this are new to the world of online gambling. This is why we will give you key pointers to look at.
The most common indicators are the security and fair play links usually found on the website. This includes third party organizations dedicated to gambling assistance and self-control: GambleAware, GamCare and GAMSTOP. Of course, there’s the licence itself that should be your top priority.
You can follow your simple step-by-step process on spotting a legit UKGC licensed casino.
- Look at the bottom of the website for the licence number and/or UKGC logo
- Click on the UKGC logo and you’ll be taken to the UKGC public register
- Alternatively, copy the licence number and search the UKGC public register
- Verify that the licence is still active under the casino’s name or its parent company
UKGC vs. Non UKGC Casinos
Obviously, the UKGC is not the only licensing body on the market, but it is undoubtedly the best. For UK players especially, UKGC licensed casinos should be the only option for online gaming. That is because the gambling commission is a local regulator that will do their utmost to protect you.
You, as an individual, the UKGC and all its licensees are all governed by UK law. As such, settling disputes is made much easier, and operators would be foolish to try and mistreat customers given the fact they face very real, legal repercussions.
Licensing bodies such as the Malta Gaming Authority are held in high esteem as well. Though, they cannot compare to the UKGC for UK customers simply because they are based in a different country.
There is no doubt that most casinos licensed by the MGA, Curacao or Gibraltar can be trusted. Yet, UKGC certified casinos continue to be the most desirable gaming destinations. That's mainly down to the Gambling Commission’s aggressive safety regulations, as we'll see later on.
As the MGA is widely considered the second-best licensing body on the iGaming market, we have drawn up a table of how they compare to UKGC licensed casinos.
UK Gambling Commission
Malta Gaming Authority
Multiple Markets: Europe, Canada, New Zealand
Protection of Player Funds
Approach to Responsible Gambling
Strict Ruleset for Self-Exclusion Options
Largely Left to Operators, Some Regulations in Place
Source of Funds Verification
Safety at UKGC Certified Casinos
Safety and the UK Gambling Commission are synonymous terms. The main reason the UKGC was founded was to enact proper online gaming regulation. This means player safety and completely legitimate operation of UKGC licensed casinos.
As you read on, we’ll talk about the gambling commission’s safety mechanisms, how they’re enacted and what this means for players and UKGC casinos alike.
Though, before we get into that, every UK player should be aware that for a casino to offer their services to customers from this region, they must have a UK license. Otherwise, they would be operating illegally.
The first thing every player should be aware of is that the UKGC can be your saving grace during your online gambling ventures. This licensing body can act as a mediator between players and UKGC licensed casinos.
Of course, players are always welcome to file a complaint with the UKGC certified casino itself. However, if the results of the complaint are unsatisfactory, players can and should directly reach out to the UKGC.
If the UKGC licensed casino is found guilty of a wrongdoing, players will be compensated whereas the operator will be fined depending on the extent of the damages.
Accessible Complaint System – A Must-Have For UKGC Certified Casinos
As per standard UKGC regulations, all UKGC certified sites must have proper channels for player complaints in cases of suspected mistreatment of any kind.
These UKGC licensed sites are obliged to answer to all player complaints and aim to resolve them as soon as realistically possible. Typically, players can file a complaint through a special web form, or by sending an email to the casino’s support team.
Proven Fair Games at UKGC Licensed Casinos
Game fairness is of utmost importance to players, and therefore the UKGC. As such, you can rest assured that all games at UKGC licensed casinos are tested for fairness. This means that these games have legitimate RNG (Random Number Generators) that generate a truly random outcome of each game round.
The UKGC doesn’t personally test each game at every licensed operator. Instead, UKGC licensed casinos must have games on offer by software providers with a remote gaming licence issued by the UKGC. In turn, these software providers are the one subjected to internal audits and game testing.
Prevention of Underage Gambling & Combating Money Laundering
There are many security concerns related to online gambling, but it’s easy to argue that preventing underage gambling is the number one priority. This is why identity verification is mandatory at UKGC licensed casinos. It was in fact one of the first regulations imposed by the UKGC.
In order to make sure you are of legal gambling age, UKGC licensed online casinos are required that you complete a verification procedure known as KYC (Know Your Customer). This procedure may be mandatory upon registration, or upon attempting your first withdrawal at the casino.
To complete KYC, a UKGC certified casino will ask that you send relevant identification documents. This means either a photo or scanned copy of the front and back of your personal ID, passport or driver’s license. It can also entail sending a utility bill issued to your name that is no older than 3 months.
Know Your Customer also goes towards protection against money laundering. The UK online casino market was very different years back. With tax regulation, people would use all sorts of schemes to launder money through online gambling sites. Nowadays, money laundering is nigh impossible at UKGC certified casinos.
Protection of Player Funds at UKGC Licensed Casinos
Thanks to the protection of player funds regulation, you will never have to worry about the safety of your real money deposits and withdrawals at UKGC licensed casinos.
Protection of funds means that UKGC certified casinos must keep player’s funds separate from the company’s funds. As such, it’s impossible for a casino to spend your money or use it elsewhere, thus failing to provide funds for your withdrawal.
Socially Responsible Marketing by UKGC Certified Casinos
Often times, UKGC licensed casinos can double as marketing agencies. They market their games and bonuses through all possible media, sports team sponsorships and TV ads included. Obviously, this can have an adverse effect and must be kept in check.
This is why UKGC certified casinos must abide by numerous advertising guidelines that go towards socially responsible marketing. The aim of this to present gambling in a realistic fashion, and also to prevent online gambling marketing from appealing to the underage population.
To some, these regulations may seem to have a minor impact on the betterment of responsible gambling. However, the list of these regulations is quite extensive and well-thought-out.
Ultimately, we can only assure you that UKGC casino gambling marketing would look very different had the UKGC not stepped in. For more details, you can check out the UKGC's dedicated marketing guideline section on their website.
Clear Bonus Terms – Obligatory at Casinos with UKGC License
There used to be a time when some UKGC licensed casinos would offer great casino bonuses, but the bonus terms were so vague and unreasonable that the casino could revoke your cash for basically any reason. Of course, a minority of sites were like this, but nowadays they have been completely eliminated.
One of the most beneficial UKGC regulations is that casinos must provide players with clear, concise and easy to understand bonus terms. This means no funny business and removal of player funds for an arbitrary, unspecific reason, which has happened many times in the past.
Source of Funds – The Ultimate Player Protection
As a regular casino player, you may have wondered how operators often have no quarrels with taking in huge deposits instantly. Whereas, it may take them weeks to process withdrawals of a similar amount.
The avoidance of this scenario is only a byproduct of the source of funds policy created by the UKGC. In essence, if you are making large, frequent deposits at UKGC licensed casinos, you will be stopped and asked to prove you can afford them. This is, in fact, the primary objective of source of funds: protecting players by making sure they spend within their means.
Also going by proof of income, source of funds is a special verification process that’s being rolled out at all UKGC certified casinos.
While source of funds is still not a mandatory requirement for all customers at UKGC licensed casinos, it is only a matter of time before a player is faced with it.
Some top UKGC casinos who have been lenient with high-spending players have faced multi-million-pound fines in the past.
Source of funds verification entails sending relevant documents to a UKGC certified casino’s support team. This may include a photo or a scan of a recent payslip, bank statement, proof of inheritance, and similar documentation.
Some players may consider this a cumbersome process, especially as it entails divulging sensitive information to a UKGC certified casino. Ultimately, we believe it is highly impactful for the greater good of players and the overall effect on responsible gambling. It can also stop impulse-gamblers right in their tracks, and prevent them from spending money they couldn’t afford in the first place.
Responsible Online Gambling at UKGC Licensed Casinos
All of the above regulations point towards responsible gambling, there is no doubt about that. However, responsible online gambling regulations entail a number of additional measures that let players assume control over their game sessions. What’s more, there are numerous independent organizations and de-facto UKGC partners that can help players in need of online gambling assistance.
The most influential organization partnered with the UKGC is GAMSTOP. The role of GAMSTOP is simple, yet effective. It lets all UK players self-exclude from play at any UKGC licensed casinos. It is a master exclusion that will prevent you from playing at any UKGC licensed site.
All UKGC certified casinos let players self-exclude through the website itself, independently of GAMSTOP. However, GAMSTOP is a convenient option for players who would like a blanket solution to their online gambling control problems.
With the help of the UKGC, GambleAware was created and its influence became widespread. This independent organization does not enforce any rules and regulations over UKGC licensed casinos. Instead, it is a venue for players with gambling control problems with the sole aim of helping them.
GambleAware is also known as the National Gambling Helpline. While it is an independent body, it has a framework agreement with the UK Gambling Commission. Players can contact GambleAware at any time of day through telephone or live chat.
Alongside BeGambleAware, GamCare is commonly linked at all UKGC certified casinos. GamCare is an independent organization similar to the National Gambling Helpline. Its aim is to assist players who feel their gambling habits are spinning out of control.
Players can visit the GamCare website and find more details on how to seek out help. They can also find self-assessment tests, self-help resources, advice on how to self-exclude, links to blocking software and reach out directly via live chat and telephone support.
Nowadays, many UKGC certified casinos let players assume full control over their game sessions. The UKGC is not directly responsible for all these regulations, as not all of them are mandatory. However, many top UKGC licensed casinos have put them in place in order to promote fair play and stand out.
- Self-Exclusion For Up To 5 Years
- Setting a Loss Limit
- Setting Session Limits
- Setting Wager Limits
- Setting Daily, Weekly and Monthly Deposit Limits
- Setting Wager Limits
How to Become A UKGC Licensed Casino?
Becoming a UKGC licensed casino is no walk in the park. The entire process requires heaps of documentation and fulfilment of criteria. In fact, many new prospective operators are advised to hire a professional in order to guide them through the entire process.
From the moment of applying for a license, acquiring it can take up to 16 weeks. There are numerous types of licences that can be issued by the UKGC, we’ll give you the list below.
Types of UKGC Casino Licenses
- Gambling Software
- Gaming Machines
UK Gambling License Fees
As we mentioned already, becoming a UKGC licensed casino is a laborious process. It is also a costly one, as operators need to consider the application fee, approval fee and annual operating fees.
As there are dozens of licence types that can be acquired, the total fees will depend on the types of licences an online casino is after. In order to help out with the calculations, the UKGC has a public fee calculator available on their website.
Maintaining a UKGC License
One can easily say that maintaining a UKGC licence is as difficult as obtaining it, if not more. That is because UKGC licensed casinos must provide key reports on a quarterly and yearly basis to the Gambling Commission. This includes, but is not limited to, the following:
- Alternative Dispute Resolution
- Information on Security Breaches
- Reports of Protection of Customer Funds
- Regulatory Returns
- Changes in Corporate Control
- Anti-Money Laundering Activities
- Suspicious Betting Activities
- Annual Assurance Statements
Breaches at UKGC Casinos – An Added Layer of Security
Fees are only a minor thing to worry about for UKGC licensed casinos after their licence has been approved. The main concern for these casinos should be legitimate day-to-day operation. Failing to adhere to UKGC regulations puts them at risk of heavy fines and even licence removal.
The Gambling Commission is not lenient when it comes to punishing any wrongdoings by operators. As we’ve seen time and time again, nobody is safe from the long-reaching arm of the UKGC. Trusted operators such as Casumo, Mr Green, Betway and even software providers such as Playtech have been subjected to hefty fines in the past.
casinos can get fined for dozens of breaches of security and unfair operation. We’ll give you some of the most common occurrences that have triggered fines in the past.
- Failure to Verify Player Source of Funds
- Improper Risk Assessment and Anti-Money Laundering Prevention
- Failure to Abide to Socially Responsible Marketing Guidelines
- Wrongful Dealing with Problem Gamblers
- Inadequate Processed KYC Verification
Online Gaming in the UK – Past to Present
Online gaming boomed around the turn of our century, but the UK was quick to react to the impending evolution of gambling in its online form.
In 2005, the Gambling Act was enacted and the Gambling Commission came to life. The commission was formed under the wing of the British Government’s Department for Culture, Media and Sport. It was then that UKGC licensed casinos became a thing.
Though, it was 9 years later – in 2014 – when an amendment of the Gambling Act made it so that casinos that wish to offer their services to UK players must hold a UKGC license. Prior to that, many operators would serve the UK player base through off-shore licences such as Gibraltar.
The mission of the gambling commission is simple: to ensure fair gaming, protect players and regulate the offline and online gambling sectors by issuing varying licence types. The UKGC oversees operators on a consistent basis. It penalizes UKGC certified casinos who fail to abide to their regulations, and constantly strives for new regulations that go towards the protection of players.
Regulations such as KYC checks and source of funds verification, and organizations such as GAMSTOP and GambleAware – they’re all either a direct consequence or a byproduct of the UK Gambling Commission’s influence.
Thanks to the gambling commission, today UKGC certified casinos are the safest places for online gambling. They are synonymous for trust and authority when it comes to online casinos. Therefore, they are a prime destination for UK and non-UK customers alike.
UKGC Licensed Casinos FAQ
- How do you get a Gambling Commission licence?
Getting a Gambling Commission licence requires operators to go through the licence application process. The process itself can take up to 16 weeks, and it entails a lot of paperwork, audits and fees. Of course, it all starts with the application itself and payment of a registration fee. Then, prospective licensees must fulfill an application with relevant information that includes a business plan, key figures, type of license, and so forth.
- How much does a gambling licence cost in the UK?
The cost of a UK gambling licencesvaries based on a lot of factors. The application fee is typically fixed, and non-refundable. Though, that is only scratching the surface. There are more than a handful of licencetypes issued by the UKGC, and each entails different application, approval and annual maintenance fees. The price of the annual fee also depends on the operator’s annual gross revenue.
- What do the Gambling Commission do?
The UK Gambling Commission is an executive public body that falls under the UK Government. It was established to regulate gambling in the United Kingdom, to protect the interests of players and promote fair play and responsible gambling. The UKGC issues licences to prospective online casinos. What's more, they monitor all licence holders to ensure against breaches.
- What is the most trusted UKGC licensed casino?
There are many trusted UKGC licensed casinos. In fact, we have reviewed over a hundred casinos with this licence and all the sites listed on this page have been deemed safe. For our top-rated UKGC licensed casinos, check back to earlier on.
Other UKGC Licensed Casinos
As you'll have read in the sections on the page, the best UKGC licensed casino is a sought-after title thanks to the strict nature of the compliance required. This adds an extra layer of trust to any operator who holds this accreditation.
With the UK being one of the most mature iGaming markets in the world, it's no surprise to see plenty of casinos holding a license from the Gambling Commission. Here's a look at all of the UKGC-approved casinos we've reviewed to date.