Serbia is a mostly gambling-friendly nation with gaming laws that have little impact on internet gambling. The government does not endorse online gambling, but neither does it prosecute individual players. The end result is you can play almost anywhere you want without worry. The most important thing you can do is choose safe and reputable Serbia betting sites.
And on that note, I have a few recommendations below. Each of the sites you see below is regulated in its home country and has a long history of paying winners, hosting fair games and offering a solid all-around experience. Even though these are not local sites, they are all very well regulated and reputable.
Serbia Betting Sites
Betting Online with the Serbian Dinar
The Serbian dinar is not supported by any major gaming websites, but that does not change anything. All you have to do is choose a deposit method (credit card, Neteller, Skrill, etc.) and then make your deposit as normal. The gaming site will then convert your money to euros or US dollars and let you play as normal.
Currency exchanges do incur a small fee, but it’s not too bad overall. If you play online often, you should consider opening an e-wallet account to store funds online. Your e-wallet can be used to store funds in the euro or US dollar format so you can switch between different gaming sites without constantly converting your money to and from Serbian dinars.
Gambling Law in Serbia
Serbian lawmakers appear to be slowly warming up to the idea of legal online betting. Before 2005, the country’s gaming laws made no mention of internet gambling at all. That all changed in 2005 with the passage of the Games of Chance Act. This act formally recognized online betting for the first time and legalized the activity – but only for the government-controlled monopoly provider.
Lawmakers revisited the act more than a decade later and issued the new Games of Chance Act in 2011. This law ended the government monopoly and paved the way for private operators to get licensed and offer real money games to Serbians in a legal environment. However, no gaming sites have yet received a license to operate in Serbia.
Many gaming sites located in other countries continue to accept Serbian customers despite a lack of licensing. Although they technically violate Serbian gaming laws, these international sites obey all laws where they’re located. Their argument is that they follow the law where they operate and have no obligation to follow Serbia’s laws. If Serbians choose to sign up and play, then so be it.
This is actually a pretty common situation in online gambling. There are many other countries in which the situation is basically the same. The host nation may not care for online betting, but sites located elsewhere are more than happy to accept customers from almost anywhere.
Serbian authorities did flirt with an ISP blacklist idea for a while. In 2012, various news sources reported that the government had a list of 70 online gambling websites that it demanded be blocked by local internet service providers. Some of the biggest betting operations in the world were named in the blacklist. Serbian ISPs resisted the order on legal grounds and nothing ever came of that.
The situation today is that online betting isn’t exactly legal, but it’s also not a crime to play online. Serbian gambling laws do not make it a crime to visit a website, place bets and get paid. The current status quo results in Serbians having access to a wide range of international betting websites. I do not know of any sites that support the Serbian language, but most larger sites do support some combination of English, Hungarian and Slovak among others.
In 2015, proposed amendments to the Law on Games of Chance could make it more troublesome for gamblers as it adds new prohibitions on using credit cards to participate in games abroad and for domestic banks to process transactions to/from foreign gaming sites.
Fortunately, the amendments were shot down before they could have made things difficult for Serbian gamblers. The United States took a similar measure with its own anti-gambling law in 2006 called the UIGEA. That legislation made it significantly more difficult for customers to fund their online betting accounts, but it never even came close to stopping 100% of deposits. Betting sites are very good at finding alternative payment options for customers.
For now, the status quo remains in Serbia. The government is obviously aware of online gambling and keen to act on it, but they don’t seem to place a priority on that issue at the moment. We will update this page if anything changes. In the meantime, we wish you good luck at the tables.
Mike Murphy is the founder of OnlineBettingSites.com and has over 10 years of experience in the legal online betting industry. A regular attendee of industry trade shows and conferences, Mike is a strong proponent of regulated markets and responsible gambling policies.