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Thursday, February 2, 2023
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Marley Luker is a professional poker player from Hawaii And the founder of where he writes educational content geared toward beginner poker players.

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Top 10 gambling tips for states with strict laws

Do you live in a state with strict gambling restrictions? This can be frustrating for an avid poker player or gambler, but you still have options!

U.S. gambling laws vary from state to state, and you should do your own research depending on your state. In this article, I will give some tips and alternatives for players living in less gambling-friendly states.

10. Look up your state's gambling laws
Whether you are thinking of starting your own home game or looking to see your options, it's essential to know your state and county's gambling laws. Some common things to be aware of are rake, tips, online gambling, tribal gambling, and casinos. And if you are interested in gambling law, check out some of I. Nelson Rose's Gambling and the law articles.

9. Travel to a legal gambling state
If your state doesn't allow casinos or online gambling, it's best to drive somewhere that does. Most casinos have attached resorts with great amenities. Allowing you to get away on a weekend trip and have many activities besides the casino!

Some strict gambling states can come as a surprise. For example, many people assume there will be many casinos in Atlanta. Come to find out, Georgia has some of the strictest gambling laws in the country. Luckily it's a short drive to two-hour drive to some great casinos near Atlanta.

A home poker game is a great alternative.

A home poker game is a great alternative. (photo by Flickr)

8. Start a home game
Make the best of the cards you're dealt. Make sure to look up your state and county laws but starting your own home game can be a great alternative. You get to invite your friends and save on the casino's rake. It doesn’t take much to get started, just a good poker table, some chairs, and a chip-set.

Side note: If you plan to host a less friendly game and maybe even include rake make sure to look up your local laws.

7. Plan a gambling trip
"What happens in Vegas stays in Vegas." There are lots of amazing casino resorts across the U.S. to choose from.

It does not even have to be an exclusive gambling trip, depending on where you want to stay. You can find great activities outside and then return for a lovely casino evening. Just be careful when bringing your kids, as some casino resorts do not allow underage guests.

When planning your next gambling trip, consider straying off the beaten path and look at places like Tennessee, Arizona, and California. As you can find some enjoyable games that are much less expensive than a Las Vegas trip.

6. Look for an online casino that your state allows
Some states allow online poker and casino games. Online casinos can be a fun option for the average player and may offer more of your favorite games. Some people like playing online because of the faster pace. Playing online is also a great way to quickly improve your poker skills, play more hands, and compete against better players.

5. Are there any boat casinos near you?
Depending on your location, you might be able to find a casino boat closer to a casino. If you like cruises, I recommend hopping on a casino cruise. It gives you the best of both worlds with all the amenities a typical cruise would have, plus a casino.

4. Look for home games
Understandably you may want to avoid going to the extra effort of setting up your own home game. So why not find one in your area or convince a poker-loving friend too? Another way to find home games in your area is to just to Google it. There are local forums and home game postings in most towns and cities throughout the U.S.

Make sure if you are finding a home game online to do your due diligence and have a conversation with the host. Before going, make sure to look up your local laws online and read through the rules. Ask the host why they are throwing the game and if they take a rake or accept tips. Make sure they are following the local laws. Finally, to keep everyone safe ask the host if you can buy in through a third-party app like PayPal or Zelle so there's no cash on hand.

Foxwoods Resort Casino is a tribal casino in Connecticut.

Foxwoods Resort Casino is a tribal casino in Connecticut. (photo by Wikimedia Commons)

3. Are there any tribal casinos in your area?
Because of the Indian Gaming Regulatory Act (IGRA), the U.S. recognizes certain forms of tribal sovereignty and self-government. This means that you may be able to find a tribal casino near you even though your state has strict gambling laws.

2. Look for a traveling job
Many people get bored staying in the same place for too long. So you can look for a job where you can travel for work. This can be done in a few different ways, like working online, learning a universal skill, or a traveling job. Traveling jobs can be something like trucking, travel nurse, flight attendant, etc. There are tons of these jobs that will allow you to travel the world "for work." This way, you can hit the casinos you come across while traveling for work!

1. Starting a non-profit organization game
Of course, look into the exact rules and regulations before doing this. If your state allows it, this can be a great way to support a cause you believe in. While also hosting a large poker tournament in your city.

Wrap up
I hope this article helped show you new options for strict gambling states. Make sure to thoroughly consult your state laws before doing anything I laid out in this article, as laws from state to state can differ. However, I hope I gave you valuable tips and opened your mind to new alternatives!

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