Does Japan have gambling?

Most forms of gambling in Japan are generally prohibited by Chapter 23 of the Criminal Code; however, there are several exceptions, including betting on horse racing and certain motorsports. Most gambling is illegal in Japan, but there are exceptions. Betting on some sports such as horse racing and certain motorsports is allowed, and football pools known as “toto” and lottery are allowed by special laws. Japan's Strict Gambling Regulations and Laws Mean No Casino Has Been Allowed to Operate on Japanese Soil.

However, it seems that this is about to change. Online gambling remains illegal even after the IR Implementation Act came into effect. However, recently there have been ongoing discussions within the Japanese government regarding the legalization of sports betting in football and baseball. See questions 1, 1 and 3, 1 above.

The most important game sport in Japan is probably horse racing. Here it is a realistic issue, with the focus more on betting than on the ornaments of the “sport of kings” that horse racing tends to enjoy in other countries. Aspiring winners can even attend classes on how to bet on races. Kyoutei is the extreme side of the Nihon bookmaker, as it involves motorboat racing.

The six participating boats must run around two buoys, over a total distance of 300 m. It should be noted that, since the beginning of this competition, men and women have competed together in teams. Like Keirin, Kyoutei has also started to gain followers in neighboring Korea. Japan's gameplay is as colorful as other cultural aspects of interest to travelers from all over the world.

While casinos were banned in Japan, a unique form of gambling culture emerged instead, and more than “almost half of all free time in Japan is spent in pachinko lounges (more on that later). The Japanese government and the relevant municipal body impose entrance fees on non-resident foreigners entering the casino premises in the amount of 3,000 yen as the domestic entrance fee and 3,000 yen as the municipal entrance fee (6,000 yen total). An investigation by the Japanese government revealed that illegal baseball betting was just the tip of the iceberg. Although horse racing can be considered elegant in other parts of the world, especially in the UK, it is definitely not the case in Japan.

In addition to an overview of Japanese gambling and casino culture, let's focus on games specific to the Land of the Rising Sun. Since casino games are still illegal in Japan, the vast majority of people who want to put a little money on the line end up in one of the many pachinko parlors that dot the country. Consequently, precedents from the Japanese court have found that the results of the games of “igo”, 4 mah-jong5 and Japanese chess (shogi) 6 fall into the category of “result of a chance contest”. Prime Minister Shinzo Abe said that casino-focused resorts “will help stimulate regional economies and eventually lead to growth of the overall Japanese economy.

ii) It is unclear whether Japanese residents are allowed to use online casino services whose operators are located and licensed outside Japan, but it can be prosecuted as illegal gambling if the user's bets are placed within Japan. Since the purpose of developing IR and legalizing the casino business is to encourage domestic and foreign tourists to visit and stay to improve the vitality and seek sustainable development of the Japanese economy in response to the population fall,37 there are policies that need to be followed, as well as plans and agreements that are subject to certifications. Online gambling is illegal in Japan, although players can easily avoid it by using online casinos abroad with servers hosted in other countries. Although gambling in land-based casinos is limited in Japan, you can access other gambling halls that are quite similar to casinos.


Makayla Henegan
Makayla Henegan

Typical gamer. Hardcore twitter ninja. Unapologetic food ninja. Amateur tv geek. Avid social media nerd.

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