Thailand is a very famous tourist destination in Southeast Asia.
Despite receiving millions of tourists every year, all forms of gambling except the Thai lottery and betting on horse races are illegal in Thailand.
The gambling Act of 1935 prohibits all kinds of gambling. Though this Act does not mention online gambling, it is assumed that online casinos come under the purview of the laws of gambling in Thailand.
There are severe penalties for anyone found gambling in Thailand with a fine of up to 1000 Bahts and imprisonment for up to 1 year, however, most tourists and many locals take part in gambling activities in Thailand with impunity, and gambling is a huge industry worth billions of Bahts.
Online Gambling in Thailand
Online gambling is a heavily loaded subject in Thailand.
There is no law specifically banning online casinos and gambling activities. It is assumed that the antigambling laws of the country apply to online gambling as well.
But the fact is that the same laws or the absence of them can be interpreted in two different ways.
According to the experts at ThaiCasinoReviews, it is better to keep your gambling activities to yourself in Thailand.
Shouting it out in front of others is inviting trouble from the authorities as the provisions of the Anti Gambling Act of 1935 can be easily invoked against you.
You are safe as long as you keep your online gambling activities to yourself and do not get caught red-handed by the authorities.
Is it Difficult to Take Part in Online Gambling in Thailand?
The police in Thailand are seen pretending to look the other way when it comes to online gambling.
With so many tourists coming to Thailand, it is an uphill task for the authorities to prevent these individuals from accessing online casinos and playing poker and other games in these casinos.
Their police official do conduct raids on gamblers to show they are serious in their efforts to stop people from taking part in gambling but hardly anyone is penalized or sent behind bars for playing in online casinos.
You are reasonably safe playing your favourite games in online casinos as police in Thailand doesn’t go inside homes and office to check whether people are gambling in online casinos or not.
As a tourist, you should remain careful not to divulge gambling as the source of your income. You can be easily deported from Thailand if authorities discover betting as your source of income.
Steps Taken by Thai Government to Curb Online Gambling
In separate studies carried out by Centers for Gambling Studies and Social and Business Development, it was found that nearly 57% of the adult population took part in gambling activities in Thailand in the last year.
The participants in these studies confessed to having taken part in state-run lotteries. The second most popular gambling activity reported by participants in these studies was sports betting on online betting sites.
Thai people are accessing gambling websites to circumvent the local laws on gambling. Most of the online casinos being accessed are operated from overseas and Thai laws do not apply to them.
Realising the gravity of the problem, the Ministry of Information and Communication Technology has swung into action.
It has started to block the IP addresses of the customers that have violated the gambling laws and visited online casinos for gambling.
Another stern action against online gambling has been taken by Thai courts this year. Various Thai courts have ordered blocking on 1202 websites for promoting online gambling in Thailand.
Prime Minister Orders Action Against Gambling
Increased gambling activities in the country have raised alarms for the authorities.
Even the defence minister and the Prime Minister of Thailand have spoken against the habit of gambling.
Both the dignitaries have voiced their concern about the increase in gambling activities and ordered relevant authorities to take stern action against the culprits.
Besides action against gamblers, authorities have also been asked to find out where wrongdoing has taken place and how it took place to fix the responsibility on the officers.
The Prime Minister of Thailand has said that people have a right to entertainment, but they need to be careful where they go for entertainment.
He added that people must understand that authorities cannot be present at all places to keep an eye on their activities. People should show some responsibility and avoid gambling activities that are not good for society at large.
Online gambling is a problem activity and it is not right to take advantage of the situation created by the Covid-19 pandemic to justify gambling activities.