Rhode Island Now One of Seven States with Online Casinos after Tuesday Launch


  • Bally’s owns the only two retail casinos in Rhode Island
  • The online casino market has not grown at the same rate as sports betting
  • Estimates suggest the casino could generate $40 million for the state after five years

Rhode Island online casinos went live on Tuesday, making the state just the seventh to offer this type of gaming to locals. 

Players can test their wits in a variety of ways, including slot machines and table games with live dealers. Players must be 21 or older and inside state lines to take advantage of the newly-launched market.

The state projects $24 million in tax funding during the first full year of iGaming, giving it another shot in the arm after it launched its first legal sports betting sites in January. Early estimates suggest the iGaming market could grow to nearly $40 million after five years.

Bally’s taking charge 

Rhode Island online casinos are being spearheaded by Bally’s casino, which owns and operates the only two land-based casinos (Bally’s Twin River Lincoln and Bally’s Tiveron) inside the state’s border. 

The online destination went live at noon local time with an initial offering of 170 slot machines, blackjack, and roulette. Players are able to interact with dealers via a live chat function on the website.

“This is a wonderful example of how the legislature and the private sector can work together to develop initiatives that enhance state revenues, which in turn, benefit our taxpayers,” said Rhode Island House Speaker K. Joseph Shekarchi (D-Warwick). “I congratulate Bally’s and its Rhode Island leadership team on its successful launch of this online gaming program as well as on their efforts to continuously seek ways to keep Rhode Island at the forefront in this competitive New England gaming market.” 

Tuesday’s launch comes after a four-day testing period during which a small group of locals were invited to test out the new platform, see the offerings, and report any bugs. 

Bally’s confirmed the launch of its online casino in a statement.

“We are pleased to launch this new gaming product which is borne out of our partnership with the General Assembly, Governor McKee and our regulators… to enhance state revenue and better position the State’s casinos in the competitive New England gaming market,” said Craig Eaton, President of Bally’s Rhode Island Operations. “As with all gaming operations, the State will retain complete regulatory control of iGaming, with nearly 62 percent of the slot revenue and 15 percent of the table game revenue directed to the State.”

The online casino market 

While the expansion of gambling has come swiftly thanks to sports betting, online casinos have not made much progress in most states. 

Since only six other states offer online casinos and the competition for patronage is lower than it is at brick-and-mortar locations and with legal sportsbooks, Eaton believes there is room for improvement.

“The live gaming product is very exciting. Not many states do that at all,” said Eaton. “So depending on demand we are ready and have room to grow.”

While Eaton’s comments are true, nearly all of the states that do offer online casinos are near Rhode Island. Those states include:

  • Connecticut
  • Delaware
  • Michigan
  • New Jersey
  • Pennsylvania
  • West Virginia  

Bally’s is planning on operating its online tables 24/7 with the help of 40-60 full-time employees. Roughly $5 million will be invested into building a new game streaming studio at the Lincoln location, which is where the online casino employees will be stationed. 

Rhode Island plans to use the proceeds from its new online casino for a variety of public projects, including refurbishing roads, helping fund schools, and paying for police officers. 

Sportsbooks claimed 34% of Rhode Island’s gaming revenue during fiscal year 2023 with $509.5 million. Video lottery machines and table games combined to generate $668.6 million in revenue, or 44.7% of the total.