Most Popular eSports Bookies in Hungary

In a culture of folk music and literary masterpieces, Hungary is evolving from its state-dominated gambling framework. A portion of the country’s domestic population enjoys esports gambling, which is a growing gaming market in the region.

Nearly 4 million citizens play video games annually, which is close to 60 percent of Hungary’s population. With more than 90 percent of the country devoted to organized religion including Catholicism, amongst other religions, only one percent of the population is addicted to betting. The younger generation is fueling the country’s esports boom, which experts predict includes more than 200,000 players.

Most Popular eSports Bookies in Hungary
HistoryIs esports gambling legal in Hungary?Betting Acts in HungaryHungary’s popular esports gamesOnline payment methods in HungaryFAQs

As the esports market grows, opportunities to gamble on gaming are tied to gambling legislation and regulations. Since 2014, Hungary’s betting market is expanding dramatically, following legislation that allowed for 11 casinos opened across the country. In 2015, only four land-based casino operations were given authority to offer online betting options to Hungary’s citizens. By 2018, the Court for European Justice ruled against this restrictive policy, deciding that the limit to online gambling licensing violated the European Union’s laws.

In the aftermath of the ruling, the EU instituted no enforcement measures against Hungary to ensure opportunities for private businesses to offer gambling opportunities to the country. For a time, Hungary blocked unlicensed online gambling operations from providing services to Hungarians via the internet. By 2020, the list of illegally operating online operators added to Hungary’s blacklist grew exponentially, exceeding 150 percent of the previous year.

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History

History

After WWII political viewpoints surrounding Hungary’s gambling landscape evolved. For a time, there was a focus defying individuals enriching themselves. Slots and other forms of gambling were prohibited. However, in 1947, the Toto Pools were passed to raise money for athletes to compete in the 1948 Olympics. By 1957, the country reinstated the National Lottery. Popularity grew for the lottery as the monthly wins gave citizens a chance to purchase luxury items, such as appliances, villas, and automobiles. Queen Habsburg created a gambling monopoly, focusing on card games and horse racing.

In 1827, Hungary opened a land-based casino, called Casino Sopron, which is the oldest casino in the country today. Additional casinos opened in 1989. By 1992, Budapest’s hotel Sofitel launched Las Vegas Casino. Szenrencsejatek launched an establishment, called Tropicana in 2000. By 2007, the Hungarian government took control of the gambling market. In 2011, the governing authority was called National Tax and Customs Administration.

The minimum gambling age is 18 and requires bettors to register. An operating license costs establishments nearly 700,000 euros. By 2013, new laws have opened the local gambling market to online operators but requires extremely high fees. With the more lenient gambling regulations in the last decade, additional casinos are opening, and gambling is becoming more popular in the region.

Esports Origins

Gamblers began wagering on esports soon after the phenomenon gained popularity. As youth continue to play popular games, the competitive nature of tournaments attracts bettors seeking to win big on a wager. In the beginning, it did not appear as if esports was going to turn into a big gambling market. However, as more online platforms offer opportunities to wager on major tournaments, the market is now predicted to surpass the movie industry in revenue by 2027. The sheer number of people participating internationally is enough to support a gambling framework for the esports industry.

Esports Fan Base

Esports enthusiasts pushed for bookmakers to offer betting. Initially, the bookmakers did not make substantial money because of a low betting volume. However, as the fan base continues to grow exponentially so does the betting. Today, bettors across the globe wager on major tournament outcomes, teams, and individual players.

The popularity of esports in Hungary and across the globe increases the number of viewers. In 2017, Intel’s event in Katowice attracted more than 45 million fans and is the most watched event that year. Esports also reaches millions online via social media and popular esports websites. Esports events broadcast across the globe in various languages.

Major bookmakers are fully onboard with esports betting. In a bid to tap into the audience of millions and the multi-billion-dollar market, online sportsbooks offer robust esports betting opportunities. From social media to television, esports has found its place in the Hungarian market. Esports enthusiast in the country are still working to grow the number of players who participate, hoping to reach more than 1 million.

History
Betting Acts in Hungary

Betting Acts in Hungary

The 1991 Act XXXIV regulates Hungary’s gambling operations. Bettors may access foreign gambling platforms on the internet. The country’s Gambling Supervisory Board oversees implementation and enforcement of the Act. There are no foreign investment restrictions but licensed entry into the market is expensive.

Casino operators must have capital from 279,000 euros to 2.8 million euros. Additional obligations apply for those seeking entry in other gambling areas. Licensed operators are required to inform the Board of any changes to the operator’s financial or legal condition. The financial condition and ownership of the business is thoroughly examined during the licensing process.
For years, betting activities fell within the state’s monopoly. Recently, the country has opened sports betting licensing opportunities to private businesses. Even card rooms require special licenses.

The Gambling Act differentiates between slot machines and arcade video gaming machines. Slots are games of chance, while video games provide entertainment. Slot machines are allowed in game rooms and casinos. However, no license is required to operate arcade video games. Not even gambling video games are subject to licensing for gambling.

For operators who qualify, licenses last up to five years for lottery games and remote gambling. Land-based casinos are licensed for 35 years. Card rooms and clubs receive a license for 15 years. The process may take nearly 2 weeks for arcade games and 2.5 months for gambling activities.
By 2017, a Money Laundering Act requires due diligence to complete the licensing process. As a result, the Board may request additional data from an applicant or from the criminal registry. Operators must submit MLA applications every three years.

All licensed gamblers must adhere to responsible gambling principles to negate the impact of gambling on vulnerable groups, such as addicted persons. For these reasons, gambling ads may not target youths up to 18 years of age. Gambling related advertising is prohibited for unlicensed operators.

While gambling activity winnings are exempt from taxes. Winnings from unlicensed venues are subject to a 15 percent tax and 15.5 percent social fee tax, which the individual must declare to Hungarian’s tax service.

Betting Acts in Hungary
Online payment methods in Hungary

Online payment methods in Hungary

Esports betting requires deposits into online accounts. Sportsbooks offer Hungarian citizens the opportunity to use safe deposit methods with established, international digital wallets, such as PayPal and Neteller. Additional internationally available methods supported by some sportsbooks include Entropay, PromptPay, and EasyPay.

Players may seamlessly deposit funds into a betting account using one of these payment methods online. Banks are also offering the opportunity for transfers funds directly from a bank account to an online casino or sportsbook account. Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies give gamblers the opportunity for secure and anonymous money transfers, except the gambling institution tracks each bettor’s identity to comply with anti-money laundering regulations.

It’s crucial for esports bettors to research a platform carefully prior to depositing money online. Licensed platforms must adhere to strict regulations and oversight, protecting the gambler. Even an internationally licensed sportsbook may offer safer betting opportunities than unlicensed platforms.

Online payment methods in Hungary
FAQs

FAQs

Can any business apply for an online operator’s license in Hungary?

Hungary has recently began offering opportunities for private companies to apply for licensing to operate gambling websites online. For years, only licensed, land-based operations could also operate betting websites online.

What is the size of Hungary’s illegal gambling market?

The country has a substantial illegal gambling market, estimated at more than 100 million yearly. Regulators combat illegal gambling with payment and ISP blocking, as well as restricting advertising.

What is the revenue from the gambling market?

Hungary’s gambling revenue hit 107 million euros in 2017 from 1,370,000 casino visits.

How does Hungary combat gambling addiction?

Hungary does not have a major gambling addiction issue. Approximately one percent of the country’s population struggles with addictive behaviors. However, players may self-monitor and self-exclude from gambling activity for two years or less. Upon request to the casino, the establishment must implement the ban by the next day. Upon self-exclusion, the player must wait 7 months before revoking the request. Toll free numbers for gambling addiction assistance and player protection is displayed on all land-based casino equipment and websites for sportsbooks.

Are online gamblers in Hungary arrested?

Gambling in Hungary is legal. Enforcement involves regulatory officials blocking access to unlicensed betting platforms. From 2014-2018, the country’s regulatory body sanctioned illegal online operators and instituted a framework to block ISP access to unlicensed websites. However, the government is looking at ways to comply with EU laws, which conflicted with some Hungarian regulations. As esports betting grows, the market for gambling operators is sure to expand.

FAQs