Switzerland bans foreign online casino operators
The 1st of July 2019 marks the date that Switzerland implemented a ban on foreign online casino operators, disallowing them to offer gaming services to Swiss residents. The ban on foreign activities was decided through a referendum back in June 2018, when Christian Democrats led the committee in parliament and won the people's favour with 72.9%. Foreign operators will now be banned through restrictions on websites implemented by the ISPs (Internet Service Provider).
From now on, only casinos within Swiss boundaries are permitted to apply for a license to offer online gambling to Swiss residents. These gambling services can include lotteries, casino games and sports betting. The Federal Gaming Commission (ESBK) has awarded four licenses to local companies who are now in the process of adding online gambling to their list of services.
Online operators are already blocking players from Switzerland
Although Switzerland will block foreign online casinos through the ISPs, many online casino operators have also stopped accepting Swiss players and active accounts were suspended. Of course, players can cash out their balance, but they won't be able to play there anymore. Some operators who have seized to accept Swiss players are William Hill, Alea Gaming, L&L Europe and LeoVegas.
There are still some online casinos who accept players from Switzerland, ignoring the local laws, but it will be more difficult once the ISPs receive the list of casinos that they have to block access to.
New online casinos in Switzerland
The four licenses were awarded to major land-based casino operators. Now, while they are not all available yet, the casinos are working non-stop on going live with their new online casinos.
The Lucerne Casino will go live with the online casino brand mycasino.ch that will be hosted by the casino platform from gaming company paf. They will provide the platform, backend, games and more. The casino isn't live yet, but it's only a matter of days.
Grand Casino Baden
One of the most beautiful land-based casinos in Switzerland is the Grand Casino Baden. They are the only casinos that has gone live with their online casino, and you can find it at jackpots.ch web address. Their game selection and casino is hosted on the iSoftBet platform and the game selection is limited, but also, just like with the other casinos, it's just a matter of time before their offer will be extended.
Swiss Casinos Pfäffikon
Another popular land-based casino is the Swiss Casinos Pfäffikon. Their online casino will soon be available at online.swisscasinos.ch and it will be provided by egaming giant Playtech.
Grand Casino Davos
The Grand Casino Davos has made an agreement with the Ardent Group, who will operate through the Casino777 brand. Unfortunately, we don't know when they will go live with their casino.