Introduction to Delaware Slot Machine Casino Gambling in 2018
Delaware slot machine casino gambling consists of three pari-mutual racetrack racinos offering video lottery terminal style slot machines controlled by the Delaware Lottery. Besides slots, these VLT-style machines also offer video poker, video keno, and video blackjack.
Online slots are also available from Delaware’s casinos, but playing online can only be done if at least 21 years of age as well as being physically located in the state of Delaware.
There are no tribal casinos in Delaware, due to having no federally recognized American Indian tribes.
This post continues the weekly blog series Online Resource: State-By-State Slots Gambling Summaries, an online resource dedicated to guiding slot machine casino gambling enthusiasts to success. Each weekly post reviews slots gambling in a single U.S. state, territory, or federal district.
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Relevant Legal Statutes on Gambling in Delaware*
The minimum gambling age in Delaware depends upon the gambling activity:
- Land-Based Casinos: 21
- Poker Rooms: 18/21
- Bingo: 18
- Lottery: 18
- Pari-Mutuel Wagering: 18
Delaware law defines a slot machine, in part, as a gambling device which “may eject something of value.” Therefore, Delaware’s VLT gaming machines pay out in cash.
All three Delaware casinos are open 24 hours. However, they are closed on the Easter and Christmas holidays.
The minimum bet in Delaware’s casinos is $0.01. The maximum bet is $2,500.
Notably, the Delaware Lottery has a policy of winner privacy. As slot machines fall under their jurisdiction, they will never release the names of winners for promotional purposes, unless the winner specifies otherwise.
If you are interested in any of several unusual details of Delaware’s gaming regulations, the Delaware Lottery publicly offers its Video Lottery & Table Game Regulations.
*The purpose of this section is to inform the public of state gambling laws and how the laws apply to various forms of gambling. This information is not intended to provide legal advice.
Slot Machine Private Ownership in Delaware
In the state of Delaware, it is legal to privately own slot machines which are 25 years or older.
Gaming Control Board in Delaware
The gaming control board in Delaware is the Delaware Lottery, providing gaming regulations for VLT-style gaming machines and table games.
However, enforcement of the Delaware Lottery’s gaming regulations is provided by the State of Delaware’s Division of Gaming Enforcement.
Casinos in Delaware
List of Casinos in Delaware
The three non-tribal racinos in Delaware are:
- Delaware Park Racetrack and Slots in Wilmington, located 37 miles southwest of Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.
- Dover Downs Hotel & Casino in Dover, located 53 miles south of Wilmington.
- Harrington Raceway & Casino in Harrington, located 25 miles south of Dover at the Delaware State Fairgrounds.
List of Tribal Casinos in Delaware
There are no tribal casinos in Delaware as this state has no federally recognized tribes.
Other Gambling Establishments
Delaware is also one of the few states where sports betting is legal at its three casinos, legally established in 2009. Such betting is limited to multiple games at professional and college sporting events.
To help Delaware compete with casinos in neighboring states, table games were legally approved in 2010. All of Delaware’s racinos offer craps, blackjack, and roulette. However, multiple other table games may be offered, but exactly which depends upon the specific location.
As an alternative to enjoying Delaware slot machine casino gambling, consider exploring casino options in a nearby state.
Delaware is bordered by:
Each of the links above will take you to my state-specific blog for that bordering state to Delaware.
Payout Returns in Delaware
As video lottery terminals, Delaware’s slot machines are legally required to have payout returns between 87% and 95%.
While other gaming websites state otherwise, Delaware’s Gaming Regulations Section 3.6: Licensing of Agents, Business Plans clearly states that the lower payout return limit of 87% is an annual average rather than a per wager requirement for each slot machine.
This is further collaborated by Delaware Code 29 Del. C. §4805(a)(15), which further seems to state the 95% maximum payout return is also an annual average for each slot machine.
However, both are clear it is possible for games to have a payout return greater than 95% with approval from the Director of the Delaware Lottery. It is not known how often this approval is given.
What this means is straightforward. Delaware casinos do not directly control the odds of winning on their VLT-style slot machines. Those odds are controlled by the Delaware Lottery.
However, by working with the Delaware Lottery, it is possible to provide a business plan to the Director to receive approval to increase theoretical payout returns to be greater than otherwise allowed. Potentially, this includes over 100%.
What I wonder about is this: How often does the Director approve exceeding the maximum payout return and on which slot machines has this been done?
Actual payout return statistics are publicly available on the Delaware Lottery’s Video Lottery Monthly Proceeds and Distributions webpage.
However, each casino’s actual monthly payout return will need to be calculated by dividing “Amount Won” by “Amount Played” for that month.
For the month of July 2018, actual payout returns statistics by casino were:
- Delaware Park Racetrack and Slots: 92.16%.
- Dover Downs Hotel & Casino: 92.64%.
- Harrington Raceway & Casino: 91.88%.
Summary of Delaware Slot Machine Casino Gambling in 2018
Delaware slot machine casino gambling consists of three casinos with pari-mutuel wagering of dog or horse racing including simulcast. These racinos also currently offer 6,218 video lottery terminal style gaming machines having video slots, video blackjack, video poker, and video keno.
Delaware’s VLT-style slot machines have minimum and maximum legal limits on theoretical payout returns. Per slot machine on an average annual basis, the minimum payout return is 87%, while the maximum payout return is 95%.
This maximum payout return can be increased with approval from the Director of the Delaware Lottery, but how often this is done is uncertain.
Notably, the Delaware Lottery has a policy of winner privacy, including for slot machine jackpot winners, unless the winner specifies otherwise.
Annual Progress in Delaware Slot Machine Casino Gambling
Little change has been seen in Delaware casinos, and specifically with regards to their slots offerings as well as gaming regulations, over the last year. However, the total number of slot machines in the state decreased by 17% from 7,520 to 6,218 gaming machines.
2017 Archive: Delaware Slot Machine Casino Gambling in 2017 – District of Columbia slot machine casino gambling is unavailable. No casinos or slot machines for the purpose of gambling exist within Washington, DC. The nearest casinos are located in Maryland and Virginia. Lottery players must be 18 or older, but a person under 18 may receive a lottery ticket as a gift and be paid.
Other State-By-State Articles from Professor Slots
- Series: Online Resource: State-By-State Slots Gambling Summaries – Now in its second year, this series is an online resource dedicated to slot machine casino gambling enthusiasts. It provides 56 weekly, detailed gambling summarizes covering each U.S. state, territory, and the federal district to capture dynamic changes occurring of late in the U.S. gaming/gambling industry specific to slots play.
- Previous: Connecticut Slot Machine Casino Gambling in 2018 – Connecticut slot machine casino gambling currently consists of two tribal casinos, Mohegan Sun and Foxwoods, within a few miles from each other. These casinos compete, always striving to be best by constantly upgrading their facilities. Two others are planned, including an approved satellite tribal casino in East Windsor.
- Next: District of Columbia Slot Machine Casino Gambling in 2017 – District of Columbia slot machine casino gambling is unavailable. No casinos or slot machines for the purpose of gambling exist within Washington, DC. The nearest casinos are located in Maryland and Virginia. Lottery players must be 18 or older, but a person under 18 may receive a lottery ticket as a gift and be paid.