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Q: Gambling laws in the UK ( Answered 4 out of 5 stars,   2 Comments )
Subject: Gambling laws in the UK
Category: Sports and Recreation > Games
Asked by: joachim-ga
List Price: $5.00
Posted: 14 Jun 2002 04:35 PDT
Expires: 14 Jul 2002 04:35 PDT
Question ID: 25690
Is it legal to play a game of poker for money in a hotel room with
friends in the United Kingdom. I am specifically interested as to
whether the hotel room counts as a private or a public place.
Information as to whether this is often actually done and how hotel
managers / owners feel about this would also be interesting.
Subject: Re: Gambling laws in the UK
Answered By: wengland-ga on 21 Jun 2002 11:31 PDT
Rated:4 out of 5 stars

Yes, it is legal, maybe.  According to the gaming act of 1968, the
following forms of gaming are exempted from the general scheme of
licencing and registration:

* gaming at home  (hotel room is your 'home' for the moment)

* certain minor gaming on premises licenced under the liquor licensing
laws (you can bet on Dominoes or play a bit of penny-ante at the pub)

Now, if you are running high-stakes poker, no matter where it is held,
you may run into trouble.  The organizers of 'The Worlds Largest Poker
Game', Poker Million, have decided to postpone their tournament
because of concerns the local police would break the game up, even
though the Gaming Board has ruled it legal.

Since Google Answers cannot provide legal advice, I would suggest you
contact the local police and the Gaming Board to clarify matters

Chapter seven of the report from the Department for Culture, Media and
Sport details what is exempt.

I hope this answers your question and I wish you luck in your games!

Search Strategies:
1968 gaming act poker
Gaming Act 1968
joachim-ga rated this answer:4 out of 5 stars

Subject: Re: Gambling laws in the UK
From: alyrise-ga on 17 Jun 2002 14:51 PDT

I think you may find the link below of interest:

The main legislation seems to revolve around the issue of whether it
is a commercial operation or not.  As far as I can tell, this was a
private game and therefore not subject to the law as it stands.  A
hotel bedroom would count as a private place.

As to how often it is actually done, it's impossible to say, as this
kind of activity is by nature private and not advertised or logged.

I suspect most hotel managers don't mind about this, so long as you
polish off the content of the mini-bar or order lots of drinks from
room service!  Unless, of course, they have strict religious beliefs!

hope this helps,

Subject: Re: Gambling laws in the UK
From: themanagement-ga on 17 Jun 2002 16:07 PDT
As a UK citizen and user of hotels I think it's fair to say that staff
of medium/larger hotels (say more than 25 rooms) are not going to have
any issue with this.  The bedroom is a private place, but try it in
the bar or lounge and they would certainly ask you to stop as they
don't have gambling licences and they would get into serious trouble. 
Smaller hotels may be family run, and there the issue is more the
individual's attitude to gambling - as in the previous comment this
could be fine or totally anti.

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