Quebec Gambling Guide – Where to Gamble in Quebec

Quebec is part of the 13 territories and provinces that make up Canada. It borders many notable areas, including US states like New York, Vermont, New Hampshire, and Maine in the south. Quebec is the largest Canadian province, and its official language is French.
The Quebec Gambling Commission is the main overseer of the sector in the province. The power is in the hands of the respective provinces to look after the licensing, operation, and regulation of gambling activities in their jurisdictions.

Casinos

Video lottery terminals (VLTs) and slot machines are allowed in Quebec. Only casinos are permitted to host slot machines on their premises. VLTs can be played in casinos and other establishments such as racinos and restaurants.
Since 1993, the video lottery has been regulated by the team at the Société des loteries vidéo du Québec. This decision was made by the Loto-Quebec. The province was one of the last in Canada to legalize VLTs. The number of VLTs in Quebec has been steadily declining, with 40,000 dotted around the state in 1994 and only around 12,000 currently in operation.
The casinos in the province are overseen by the Société des casinos du Québec (SCQ), which is part of the Loto-Quebec body. Since 2004, every casino in the province has not allowed smoking inside the premises. Since 2013, alcohol has been allowed to be served to players at their respective slot machines and tables in the casinos throughout the provinces.
Games of chance have been offered in Quebec since 1970, and the selection has gradually expanded over time. At the moment, there are nine land-based casinos in the province.
These casinos aren’t just frequented by Quebec residents – those from neighboring areas such as Maine, New Hampshire, Vermont, and New York regularly visit these establishments due to their needs not being met in their jurisdictions. The Quebec Alcohol, Racing, and Gaming Commission oversees all of these activities.
The main casinos in the jurisdiction of Quebec are:

  • Casino de Charlevoix
  • Casino de Montréal
  • Casino de Mont-Tremblant
  • Casino du Lac-Leamy
  • Hippodrome Trois-Rivières
  • Salon de Jeux de Québec
  • Salon de Jeux de Trois-Rivières

The largest of these is the Casino de Montréal with more than 3,000 gaming machines on offer and over 120 table games on offer.
Quebec has a state-owned online platform called Espacejeux with a wide range of slots, popular table games like roulette and poker, as well as sports betting, video lotteries, and keno available for people to play.
Online gambling revenue in the province passed $100 million in a 12-month period for the first time in 2018. This online platform is operated by Loto-Quebec who had total revenues of CAD$3.8 billion in the most recent 12-month period.  
The online platform grew by almost 30% year-on-year up to CAD$118 million. This came after the platform was redesigned to make it easier for players to navigate it and find their favorite titles.
There is also online gaming offered by a tribe in the province. The Kahnawake Gaming Commission (KGC) has overseen this since 1999. Their territory is located near Montreal, and it is its own sovereign nation.
The tribe had been working with many offshore operators who only needed proof of holding a license with another major regulatory body before being granted an online gaming license. Since 2016, the tribe blocked Americans from accessing their gaming sites following a legal battle with the New Jersey Division of Gaming Enforcement.

Sports betting

Quebec is home to a single NHL team – the Montreal Canadiens. The province also has an MLS team (Montreal Impact) and a CFL team called the Montreal Alouettes.
There are comprehensive sports betting offerings available to residents of the province. Loto-Quebec looks after all of these operations. The sports betting offerings are called Mise-O-Jeu. They are similar to the Proline games seen in other Canadian provinces. They also carry some of the same drawbacks, such as not allowing players to place wagers on the outcomes of single games, as per the federal rules.
You need to make a parlay bet that comes with two to eight selections. You’re also required to prove that you are a Quebec resident and old enough to gamble in the province.
You can place online bets for Mise-O-Jeu. However, their odds are poor when compared to foreign sportsbooks. This is largely due to their monopoly on the sports betting market in the province. This is a significant difference, which is why many people continue to take advantage of offshore sports betting operators.
The options you can bet on with Mise-O-Jeu are:

  • Auto racing
  • Golf
  • Boxing
  • MMA
  • Tennis
  • Basketball
  • Baseball
  • Football
  • Soccer
  • Hockey

There are six different markets you can choose from:

  • The Match Winner 2-Way is correctly predicting the winner of the game. You are not allowed to bet on a tie.
  • The Match-Winner 3-Way is making the prediction on the outcome of a game, but you are now allowed to predict a tie.
  • The Match Winner with Spread market is where you select a winner of a game by dealing with a point spread.
  • The Total market is effectively an option for an over/under wager. You predict whether the final score will be greater or lower than a defined spread.
  • The Opposing Players market is where you choose two players who compare to each other in a head-to-head battle. You select the person you believe will do better.
  • The Predictions market is a prize pool. You get options for each successful selection. The person near the top is awarded prizes.

There had been a push by the Quebec government to block residents from accessing offshore online gambling platforms.
A new law was introduced in 2016 directing internet service providers to implement this block. However, it was later deemed unconstitutional as it infringed on the federal government jurisdiction relating to the Criminal Code and telecommunications.

Animal racing

In Canada, the only form of gambling that is not governed by the province is horse racing; a federal agency is in charge of overseeing this sector.
Loto-Quebec has offered sports betting, including horse racing, since 1990. Unfortunately, the four racetracks that were located in Quebec were recently closed after their owner went bankrupt and had to call a halt to proceedings.
The régie des alcools, des courses et des jeux looked after the horse racing events, while the Canadian Pari-Mutuel Agency oversaw all betting at the track.
There is harness racing held at the Hippodrome Trois-Rivières. There are also 65 gaming machines located on the property.

Poker

Texas Hold Em was only legalized in Quebec in 2007. The Quebec Alcohol, Racing, and Gaming Commission regulates poker in the province. There are five main locations in Quebec that host poker rooms:

  • Casino de Charlevoix (La Malbaie)
  • Casino de Montréal (Montréal)
  • Casino de Mont-Tremblant (Mont-Tremblant)
  • Casino du Lac-Leamy (Gatineau)
  • El Jumelgi Poker Room (Montreal)
  • Playground Poker Club (Kahnawake)
  • Poker Palace Montreal (Kahnawake)

You can play online poker through the state-run Mise-O-Jeu platform.

Lottery

In 1969, an amendment was made to the Criminal Code of Canada, allowing provinces to hold their own lotteries. The Loto-Quebec lottery commission was subsequently founded in 1969.
Today, both instant and draw games are offered by Loto-Quebec. There are more than 8,600 locations across the province where you can partake in these games.
In 2010, the provincial government gave the go-ahead to the Société des loteries du Québec to provide online gambling services. The platform was launched in 2012, and you can now participate in lottery games on-the-go. There are daily lottery drawings, and this is the oldest form of gambling that is allowed in the province.

Bingo

The Société des bingos du Québec is in charge of bingo in the province. Bingo is one of the tools commonly used by charities to raise funds for various causes. Currently, there are around 50 bingo facilities operating in Quebec. Other charitable events are also allowed.

Conclusion

Quebec is very embracing of gambling as a whole. While the choice of casinos is somewhat limited for such a large area, the province provides quality offerings at its establishments. Comprehensive sports betting markets are available, although the odds are not too competitive compared to offshore sportsbooks.
Quebec runs an online platform where residents can play their favorite casino games as well as place sports bets and take part in various lotteries.
The province has embraced poker in recent years. Bingo is also used by charities and corporations alike as it also drums up significant interest in the region.
Overall, the Quebec gambling landscape is one of the best throughout Canada, and many people from nearby US states visit the province to get their gambling fix.