Finland is one of the most open countries when it comes to online gambling. Despite Finnish gambling laws technically stating that Finnish players shouldn’t gamble outside of the interior regulated gambling enterprises such as (PAF, Veikkaus Oy and RAY) many Finnish players continue to do so. This, naturally, has encouraged many operators to open themselves up to Finnish players.
Online gambling laws in Finland
Officially, players in Finland are required to play with PAF (Play with Friends), Veikkaus Oy (the Finnish National Lottery), or RAY (Raha-automaattiyhdisty). These are gambling providers which are protected under the Finnish Gambling Act of 2002. In theory, players in Finland are not supposed to play at non-Finnish online casinos and gambling sites.
Any player who has tried their hand at playing slots at a major casino will note that Finnish is frequently offered as a language option, though, and that many of the biggest progressive jackpot slot winners of all time have come from Finland at non-Finnish sites. How is that possible?
Despite wanting Finnish players to play at Finnish sites, there are not any laws in place to punish the native population from playing at what Finland deems offshore casinos. The European Union (EU) has even tried to get Finland (not to mention other countries) to abolish their state monopolies as it breaches competition rules and is “protectionist”.
The future could go one of two ways. The Finnish Government may decide to impose strict penalties on ISPs (internet service providers) who continue to allow players access to offshore casinos, and they could punish offshore casinos offering their services to Finns. Alternatively, the Finnish Government may cave in to EU pressure and open their market to all EU-licensed casinos, creating a freer, more European regulated Finnish gambling market.
Banking options for Finnish players
Finland uses the euro (€) currency, so naturally, all Finnish players use this when gambling online at casino sites. This is handy as most major casinos will offer the currency as a deposit method. It is worth noting that the Finnish banking options most commonly used are also widespread at many top casino sites.
Many of the internet’s leading casino deposit options are favoured by Finnish players, too. Finns are known to use deposit methods which include VISA, MasterCard, Instadebit, PayPal, Skrill, Paysafecard, Instant Banking, Neteller, Sofort, and PayForIt. These deposit methods will generally be available for Finns to use free of charge, for both deposits and withdrawals. Finnish casinos have fair withdrawal caps and are known to offer reasonable transaction times.
Finnish casino safety and security
Of course, Finnish monopolies in the gambling sector are going to be the most secure for Finnish players. These naturally include the Veikkaus Oy, PAF and RAY enterprises. However, as mentioned, many Finnish players shun these as they prefer a broader selection of games and bigger promos and bonuses.
If you choose not to play at a Finland endorsed casino or gambling site, then there are a few other licenses and certifications which ensure Finnish players that they are participating in a safe and secure casino site. Chief amongst these are those casinos which are based in Europe and contain licenses issued by the UK Gambling Commission, the Malta Gaming Authority (MGA), and a license issued out of Gibraltar. Licenses issued out of Curacao can often be trusted, too, although not as much as the others mentioned.
Good credentials to keep an eye out for when playing at offshore casinos are eCOGRA certificates, iTech or TST certified stamps, SSL (Secure Socket Layer) encryption, RNG-certification stamps and if you happen to be playing at a bitcoin casino, the Provably Fair mark. These are all signs that the casino is audited and meets international standards for fair play and secure gaming.
Mobile casino gaming in Finland
Finland has a massive mobile casino gaming population. Many Finns love to play their favourite games (which are arguably slot machines) on the go. The three big Finnish monopolies we’ve mentioned all offer mobile gaming to some extent, although their services are perhaps not as finely tuned as those you can find at offshore casinos, particularly those powered by Net Entertainment, Microgaming, Playtech and other leading casino software providers. Speaking of software providers, what types of games can you play in Finnish casinos?
Finland casino games
Finnish online casinos aren’t that far off the bar set by competing offshore casinos in terms of what you can play. They feature games from leading software providers such as Net Entertainment, so the collection of games they carry is certainly decent. Where Finnish casinos fall behind their offshore competitors is that they don’t quite have the range of games from various developers.
Most offshore casinos which appeal to Finnish players will offer up games from 5 or more software providers. In some cases, as many as 15 to 20 software providers are involved, and that naturally creates a vast gaming library. Ultimately, it is the gaming library which may turn many Finnish players away from Finnish casinos towards offshore domains.
Bingo isn’t particularly popular in Finland, and sports betting falls behind poker and casino action in the country. Finns love to gamble, and thus the range of games open to them must be grand. Finnish players can expect to find table poker, card and table games, roulette, slots, instant win games (such as scratch cards), blackjack, baccarat, video poker, live casino games and mobile games aplenty in their favourite sites.
Online casino bonuses for Finnish players
Finnish players love a bonus, too. This is another area where native Finnish casinos tend to fall behind their offshore counterparts. When playing at a Finnish casino, a welcome bonus tends to be a touch on the small side, and it about all you can claim.
However, popping along to an offshore casino which welcomes Finns with open arms will see you able to snap up considerably larger welcome bonuses. Alongside those welcome bonuses are redeposit deals, loyalty bonuses, monthly promotions, competitions and tournaments, as well as much more.