New Mexico offers online casino gaming through offshore based online casinos. Onshore online casinos are not permitted. State laws do not expressly prohibit players from participating with online gaming, however it does explicitly prohibit onshore operators.
All casinos in New Mexico are native American operated offering Class II and III gaming. The larger and more popular land based casinos are mostly located in Albuquerque, with Sandra Casino taking the honours of being the best.
Sports betting is legal in New Mexico, however online sports bettings is prohibited. As a result online sports betting sites reside offshore with New Mexico players accepted. Daily Fantasy Sports on the other hand is legal and is the closest form of onshore online sports betting available.
Horse racing and betting is on par with casino popularity, with the Ruidoso Downs Race Track claiming to hold the world’s most prized quarter horse race – the All American Futurity. No online horse betting is offered, with bets required to be placed at horse racing venues.
In 2012 two bills were passed through legislation to reduce owners from using performance enhancing drugs on horses.
Bingo falls under the category of charitable gaming, with many community organisations that support and operate bingo halls. Online bingo sites are available to residents via offshore providers.
Online gambling turnover is approximately $4 million per year. Casino table games leading the way with $2 million, followed by sports betting, poker and online bingo.
- Offshore online casinos accept players from New Mexico.
- There are no state regulated online onshore operators.
- New Mexico State Lottery holds monopoly on lottery products
- Licenses are awarded for land based casinos on Indian territories.
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Online casino activity is currently available and offered through various sites that are based offshore. These sites are safe and secure to play at, with no risk posed to New Mexico players, both regarding legality or to player data protection.
The best online casinos all use the latest SSL internet technology, and feature secure payment methods that are common, trusted and processed by reputable financial institutions. These include: VISA, MasterCard, Amex, Bitcoin (BTC), direct wire transfers and many other methods.
Casino Bonuses are extremely important in selecting an online casino. We have therefore displayed some of the best casino bonuses that can be found whilst balancing other important criteria such as safety and security as previously mentioned. However, for ease of reference, we have listed them according to the size of bonus.
Without doubt, at the time of writing, El Royale Casino offers the best casino bonus deal. It is also one of the safest. Coupled with excellent customer service, El Royale is our top recommended online casino for New Mexico players.
New Mexico Sports Betting Sites
After the legalization of sports betting in 2018, several casinos now offer sports betting.
- Santa Ana Star Casino opened its sports book US Book Making.
- Hilton Buffalo Thunder Casino opened its sports book on 11 March 2019.
- Mountain Gods Resort and Casino opened its sports book with William Hill.
- Isleta Resort and Casino opened its sports book on 12 August 2019.
Online sports betting sites, however is not permitted by these retail outlets. Therefore there are regulate and licensed offshore based sports betting sites that accept New Mexico bettors. There has been no precedence of any bettor being informed of a breach in law, let alone charged with a misdemeanor or felony.
Daily Fantasy Sports
Daily Fantasy Sports is growing fast in popularity. New to the gambling scene, it is considered a game of skill by many which requires bettors to create a fictitious team based on real players. The performance of the real sports players in real life determine how successful the fictitious team is. As a result, it truly is those with the most “skills” will win.
The two largest daily fantasy sports providers in the US are DraftKings and FanDuel. On this site, we do not actively promote daily fantasy sports as we understand that it is a game of “skill” which is being exploited by bettors who have the best risk modelling. That is, it isn’t nearly about how well you know your sport, the sport players etc, it is very much about who has the best statistical model and who has access to the most detailed sports player data.
As someone who may be a big fan of sport, and thinking that they would have a good chance of winning money in DFS, think again. You are pitted against statistical modelling experts who deliberately target games that mostly have new players to DFS. In fact, it has been alleged that those who are extremely good at DFS have been known to collaborate among themselves and not compete with each other. Thereby creating a sustainable winning formula shared by the experts.
We therefore want our readers to be aware that DFS is not what is appears to be. In fairness, DFS is legal in New Mexico and many DFS onshore operators accept New Mexico players.
If you wish to read more about How to Play DFS, click here.
Online Bingo Site in New Mexico
New Mexico bingo laws are stipulated under Charitable gaming state legislation. These laws provide for the licensing of non profit organizations to operate bingo games. At present, these laws do not address nor permit online bingo by onshore operators. Accordingly, online bingo sites that do accept New Mexico players are based offshore (which is the same as online casinos and sports betting sites).
The recommended online bingo sites all accept players from New Mexico. They offer advanced features that include instant messaging, fun bingo games and protocols that ensures bingo participants play together in a civil enjoyable manner. Due to the social aspect of bingo, there is a cultural aspect to bingo which cannot be found with casino or sports betting. As an example, A LOT of acronyms form part of instant chat messaging. If you are not familiar with online bingo lingo, do not be afraid, learning it is one of the most fun parts!
Legal Minimum Gambling Age
- 21 for casinos
- 18 for lottery and pari-mutuel wagering
New Mexico Casinos Overview
All casinos are Tribal Casinos with a turnover of over $5 billion per year. The effects of the pandemic in 2020 is expected to drive down yearly turnover to $4 billion.
We review the two largest casinos in New Mexico.
Sandia Resort and Casino
30 Rainbow Rd NE Albuquerque, New Mexico, 87105
At least 21 years old to play casino games. Underage are allowed on the premises and permitted to enter the dining area and non gambling areas, if accompanied with an adult who is 21 or older.
Albuquerque’s largest casino, at a size of 140,000 sq ft, offering of the casino games from slots, table games to keno. Partnering with all the big brand gaming machine providers – IGT, Aristocrat, Konami, Bally, Aruze and Ainsworth. Adjacent to the casino is a fabulous resort with luxurious suites, massive outdoor pool, spa and hot tubs.
Slots – 2,300 slot and video machines, ranging from reel, video slot machines, video poker, roulette and Must Hit progress slot machines.
Table Games – Blackjack, Craps, Pai Gow Poker, Mini Baccarat, Roulette
Poker – poker rooms are available with Texas Hold’em Hi/Lo.
Bingo – the largest bingo hall in New Mexico, that offers a lot of fun for those who want to socialise as well as enjoy the chance to win small prizes.
Bien Shur – fine dining at it’s best, breath taking views, of mountain views. Located at the top floor of the casino. Offering fresh seafood cuisine coupled with elegance and golden ambiance.
Council Room Restaurant – One of the best restaurants to have buffet. The service is professional, prompt and down to earth. You do need to walk through the casino to dine at the restaurant.
Thur Shan Buffet – If you want an affordable yet delicious buffet that offers the best in dining then you must come to Thur Shan Buffet. By far the most popular is the Seafood buffet at $34.95 per adult. There are also specials during the week, and plenty of food that children will enjoy.
Pa Shur Deli & Roadrunner Grill – $3 for a burger? You can’t get much better than that for a quick bite. Conveniently located at the casino floor.
Clubhouse Grill – This venue is more than just a clubhouse. It is huge! Able to seat up to 300 guests indoor and more outdoors. Situated alongside the soft greens of the golf course, the views are stunning.
Isleta Resort and Casino
11000 Broadway SE Albuquerque, New Mexico, 87105
Arguably the second best casino in New Mexico. Huge gaming floor, with great table limits. Puts their players first, with the excellent sanitisation and glass shields to ensure health standards are met. Perhaps the only draw back is that the hotel is a fair distance away. Not the closest of walks, but still not too far. The rooms are fantastic and reasonably priced.
Slots – over 1,700 slot machines, that are regularly updated with fresh and new games.
Table Games – over 30 tables that offer craps, roulette, blackjack and many other player favourites.
Bingo – a huge bingo hall for players looking for the social fun plus the chance to win prizes and jackpots.
Embers Steakhouse – craving for juicy steak? Then patron the Embers Steakhouse. The finest chefs that use the freshest of produce. Plus an array of fine wine to drink with.
TIWA Restaurant – famous for its Elk sausage. Throw in gourmet pizza and pasta. It’s one of the best in fine dining.
- Legislation does not prohibit players from online gambling, but online onshore operators are unlawful
- Commercial land based casinos are prohibited
- Tribal casinos and sports books based on Indian reservation territory are permitted.
- On-track pari-mutuel horse race wagering, simulcasts and slot machines are authorized at licenses racetrack facilities;
- Lawful charitable gaming includes bingo, raffles, pull-tabs, and sweepstakes
- Land based casino tax determined by tribal-state compacts
- Racetracks pay 20% of net revenue from racetrack purses
- 10% tax for non-profit organizations
- Other licensed operators pay 26% tax
Regulation and Governance
- New Mexico Gaming Control Board
- Alcohol and Gaming Regulation and Licensing Department
- Horse racing Commission
New Mexico Gambling Market Developments
- Casino gambling in New Mexico is limited to federally recognized tribes, with gaming licenses to operate class II and class III gaming.
- Two bills were introduced in 2012, to increase regulation and drugs testing in horse racing, following reports identifying a number of breaches over substance abuse and dosing.
Gambling compacts, authorizing federally recognized Indian tribes to continue their operation of casinos in New Mexico, for the next two decades, received final approval after review by the US Interior Department.
Intralot, announced they secured an eight (8)-year contract with the New Mexico State Lottery as it’s principle gaming vendor. Intralot will implement, operate and maintain the lottery’s gaming system including software platforms, terminal network, communications and associated gaming products.
Representative Nate Gentry introduced a bill to regulate daily fantasy sports. HB314, seeks to define fantasy contests, as games of skill and therefore exempt them from the prohibition on games of chance. The bill sets out a consumer protection framework whilst also detailing the penalties for none compliance, it was referred to the House Rules & Order of Business Committee for consideration.
The State Lottery launched a pilot program which allows players to buy lottery tickets at fuel pumps. The “Play at the Pump” system was initially installed at 13 fuel stations and allows players to buy Powerball and MegaMillions tickets if they pay via debit card.
The State Lottery awarded Scientific Games a new eight (8) year contract to supply instant games and related services.
The State Lottery Authority considered introducing a sports betting game. It was reported that a quick play random number generated parlay football game was being considered. It is not expected that the lottery would opt to offer players a more comprehensive range of sports betting products.
The State Horse racing Commission has been lobbying for racetracks to be permitted to offer sports betting.
The Gaming Control Board confirmed that sports betting can be legally operated by tribes within the scope of the Class III provisions under the tribal state gaming compact. As such, land-based tribal casinos may offer retail sports betting on professional and collegiate events.
The Santa Ana Star Casino launched its sports book in partnership with US Bookmaking on 16 October 2018. It is expected that sports books will be established at the majority, if not all, of the 14 other tribal casinos in the state.
The State Lottery Board unanimously approved plans to introduce a sports betting style lottery game. The exact details of the game were not finalized at this stage however, it will involve a parlay type wager with players predicting the outcomes of multiple events and winning if all are correct;
The New Mexico Lottery Board awarded Intralot a two (2) year contract extension to operate and maintain the lottery’s online systems. The contract also includes the launch of its Sport Lottery Gaming Platform and the operation and maintenance of software platforms and retail terminals.
The House of Representatives passed a lottery amendment bill to prohibit the New Mexico Lottery from expanding its sales into sports betting, by a vote of 64-0. Specifically, the bill would restrict the state lottery to create a game tied to the outcome of sports.
The Hilton Buffalo Thunder Casino in Santa Fe launched its retail sportsbook on 11 March 2019.
The Mountain Gods Resort and Casino launched its retail sportsbook in partnership with William Hill on 25 July 2019.
The Isleta Resort and Casino in Albuquerque launched its retail sportsbook on 12 August 2019.
Is it legal to gamble online in New Mexico?
Gambling laws vary for each type of game. Online games are not permitted to be offered by onshore gaming operators. As a result, online operators are based offshore at regulated and licensed jurisdictions. New Mexico players are accepted by the offshore operators. In regards, to player legality, the laws neither explicitly declare online gambling as illegal or legal. As a result New Mexico players can continue to enjoy playing online games.
What is the legal minimum age to play at online casinos?
Legal minimum ages vary from online casino to online casino, however their requirement is that the higher of the player’s jurisdiction the the online casino’s own legal minimum is taken to be the determine age limit. Therefore, for New Mexico players the legal minimum age is 21.