Gambling in Ecuador
Due to pro-gambling laws, for over half a century the Ecuadorian government allowed almost all forms of betting, from traditional land-based casinos and sportsbooks to bingo, lotteries and poker. But in 2010 the Ecuadorian gambling industry faced a tremendous change. Left-wing President Rafael Correa announced that his government would ban casinos in the nearest future on the basis of corruption and money laundering. In May 2011 a referendum on this issue was finally held, and the majority of Ecuadorians supported the President’s suggestion. Thus all of the 55 casinos, slot parlors (about 120) and bingo halls were banned. All casinos though were given a six month term to shut down voluntarily. The new president election in 2013 might change the current situation, it is doubtful though.
Online Gambling in Ecuador
Even though land-based gambling is illegal now, there is no mention of online gambling in Ecuador's gambling laws. The government does not supply licenses for online gambling websites to operate out of the country, but they do not prevent players in Ecuador from using foreign internet gambling websites. These foreign gambling websites are currently the best way for local players to enjoy real-money casino, poker, bingo, and sports betting over the internet. There are over 400 Internet betting sites based in other countries that local players can use, including 92 that offer Spanish language pages. Payment methods for accounts set up from Ecuador include credit and debit cards as well as specialized e-commerce services.