Getting money on and off Pennsylvania online gambling sites, when they finally launch, should involve a relatively quick and easy process.
However, that will not always be the case.
Just like the legal and regulated online casino and poker sites in neighboring New Jersey have since 2013, Pennsylvania online casinos are expected to offer a wide variety of different deposit and withdrawal options. However, just like in neighboring New Jersey, they won’t always work.
Most of New Jersey’s online casino sites give players the option to deposit cash into their online accounts through the cashier’s cage at an affiliated casino property. Many of the same online gambling sites also offer easy-to-use prepaid cards that effectively do the same thing.
There have been few if any issues with using these methods of deposits.
Since the first online gambling licenses in the state are currently being issued to PA casino license holders, they should offer the same problem-free services.
Credit and debit cards not always surefire options
However, one of the greatest benefits of online gambling is that you don’t really need to leave home to do it, and unfortunately, players will have to venture out to buy a prepaid card or make at a deposit at a cashier’s cage, negating that benefit.
It would be nice if players could just pull out a Visa, Mastercard, or debit card and use it like they were buying anything else online. Unfortunately, while PA online casinos will surely accept credit and debit cards as a method of deposit, several of the banks that issue the cards won’t allow the cards to be used for online gambling purposes.
Months after the launch of online gambling sites in New Jersey, players in the Garden State were still reporting issues when trying to deposit at NJ online casinos with debit or credit cards. Now years later, some banks still aren’t on board.
Credit card deposit issues
In fact, when online gambling first launched in New Jersey is was estimated almost one-third of credit card transactions were declined.
Players with debit and credit cards issued by financial institutions including Bank of America and Wells Fargo were the first to report issues.
That list has grown to include various credit and debit cards issued by the following financial institutions as well:
- American Express
- TD Bank
- Capital One
The legal landscape regarding online gambling in the United States writ large seems to be in flux, which is likely what is confusing these banks into declining the transactions.
UIEGA still causing problems
In 2006, Congress passed the Unlawful Internet Gambling Enforcement Act (UIGEA). The goal of the law was to prevent offshore online gambling operators from accepting US customers. However, the federal government cannot dictate how offshore online gambling operators run their businesses. So they went after the US banks instead.
The UIEGA essentially did was make it illegal for US banks to process online gambling transactions. Since there were no legal and regulated online gambling operators in the US at the time, no exception was made for them.
Of course, there are now legal and regulated online casino sites in New Jersey, and soon will be in PA as well. However, several major financial institutions in the US have yet to adjust the policies they instituted to comply with the UIEGA.
Other payment options
Thankfully, New Jersey offers various alternate methods players can use to fund their accounts and so will PA.
ACH deposits, or eChecks, allow players to deposit money directly from their bank account on to an online gambling site. This method requires knowledge of the player’s bank account number and the bank’s routing number.
Bank wires have also proven successful. Plus, there are a growing number of third-party online payment processors allowing online gambling transactions. This includes sites like Neteller and Skrill. Additionally, after almost a decade of denying online gambling transactions, popular online payment processor PayPal is becoming more prevalent.
Of course, a player’s PayPal email must match the email on file at the online gaming site. Plus, PayPal’s policy is that the account must be funded by a bank account and not a credit card. However, as time goes on, these stipulations are becoming more widely known. As a result, the number of PayPal deposits being rejected has declined
When it comes to withdrawing money, online casinos have one simple rule. The method of deposit should also be the method of withdrawal. This often makes things easier for players. However, in the event they can’t use the same method, exceptions are made and checks issued.
It may be a slower process. However, legal and regulated online gambling sites in the US rarely make it hard to get money off the site.
Things could remain as they are with certain financial institutions when the first online gambling sites launch in Pennsylvania. If so, depositing and withdrawing money on online casino sites will likely be a little tricky.
However, players can take solace in the fact it’s getting better all the time. Plus, thanks to state online gambling regulation, players’ money is certainly safe.