Live Dealer Casinos

If bettors enjoy mobile gambling but miss interacting with the dealer, online casinos have their bettors covered in New Jersey and Pennsylvania. Although online casinos are legal in New Jersey, West Virginia, Pennsylvania, and Michigan, live dealer casino games are generally only available in NJ and PA. Michigan is slated to launch its first live dealer games later in 2021.

These exciting online games have real dealers on the other side of the screen. So, bettors can get closer to a real casino feel while they’re at home. Here’s what bettors need to know about finding real dealer games in their favorite online casinos. 

Top 5 Best Live Dealer Online Casinos In The US

Bettors will quickly notice how similar most online casinos are. Most casinos offer almost all the same games, and bettors who enjoy slots games have many to choose from. However, a few stand out from the pack, offering live dealer games among the many gambling options.

Here are a few of the best online casinos for live dealer games:

Golden Nugget Online Casino

Live Dealer Games Available In: New Jersey

Visit: Golden Nugget Casino Get a 100% match bonus up to $1,000 + $10 free site credit 

In August 2016, Golden Nugget Casino became the first online casino in New Jersey to launch live dealer games, setting a trend that has since taken off throughout the state. As of 2019, the casino’s live dealer games are open 24 hours a day, seven days a week.

Offering a total of 15 games, Golden Nugget goes beyond offering the live dealer games of traditional blackjack and Roulette. It also offers 3 card poker, casino hold ’em, and Baccarat. Blackjack minimums go as low as $25 and as high as $2500 (for high-stakes games). All other games have a solid $1 minimum across the board.

WynnBET Casino

Live Dealer Games Available In: New Jersey

Visit: WynnBET Casino Get a 100% match bonus up to $250 with 1x playthrough

Even though WynnBET is one of New Jersey’s newest online casinos, it’s hit the ground running by offering a wide selection of live dealer games. Considering that more established brands like SugarHouse and BetMGM took years before they launched their live dealer games, this is a great sign that WynnBET has its finger on the pulse of what NJ gamblers want.

The live dealer games offered at WynnBET Casino include blackjack, Roulette, and Baccarat, with more on the way.

BetRivers Online Casino

Live Dealer Games Available In: Pennsylvania and New Jersey (as SugarHouse Casino)

Visit: BetRivers Casino Get a 100% match bonus up to $250 with PLAY250 promo code

BetRivers, which operates as SugarHouse in New Jersey, has been rolling out live dealer games over the past couple of years. It began in 2018 by introducing live dealer games, powered by Evolution Gaming, at SugarHouse in NJ. The first games on offer were blackjack (regular and high stakes), Roulette, slingshot roulette, and Baccarat. It has since added new games to the menu, including several variations of poker.

In Pennsylvania, BetRivers officially launched its live dealer games, also in partnership with Evolution Gaming, in October 2020. Currently, the only games on offer are blackjack and Roulette, but we expect that the menu will expand in due time.

BetMGM Casino

Live Dealer Games Available In: New Jersey and Pennsylvania

Visit: BetMGM Casino Get a 100% match bonus up to $1,000 + $25 free site credit

It seems that BetMGM Casino has been busy this year, having rolled out live dealer games at its online casinos in Pennsylvania and New Jersey within a month of each other (November 2020 and December 2020, respectively).

Operating in partnership with Evolution Gaming, BetMGM PA offers four live dealer games: infinite blackjack, blackjack live, American Roulette, and American Auto Roulette. In New Jersey, players can enjoy a similar selection along with live poker.

DraftKings Online Casino

Live Dealer Games Available In: New Jersey and Pennsylvania

Visit: DraftKings Casino Get a 100% match bonus up to $1,500 + $10 free site credit

DraftKings grew from a daily fantasy sports site to a d and finally an online casino operator. With a large cash reserve compared to many of its competitors, DraftKings has the resources to offer live dealers. DraftKings offers seven live dealer games: 

  • DraftKings Exclusive Games
  • Baccarat 
  • Blackjack
  • Infinite Blackjack
  • Roulette
  • Poker
  • Game Shows

Across these games, DraftKings lists two types of live dealer experiences. The first is a shared table. At a shared table game, bettors will play with DraftKings bettors alongside bettors from other online casino sites. DraftKings also offers DraftKings tables which have dedicated dealers for DraftKings games. 

The available hours for these live dealers vary by game type. DraftKings tables, Roulette, and Infinite Blackjack are available 24/7. The others are available from 11:00 am to 3:00 am. Bettors who want to play live dealer games can find the live dealer section. But bettors who want to know more can browse DraftKings’ help section too. 

What Is A Live Dealer Casino Online? 

Live dealer casino games are a good substitute for live casino games. It’s a great option for the pandemic and it’s a convenient option during normal times too. Live dealer games are unique because a real dealer is on the other side of the screen. Bettors login to their online casino accounts, then pick a live dealer game to get into. Once they get into the game, they’ll see a real dealer who’s dealing real cards and spinning real roulette wheels. That’s largely what’s happening. But every spin, deal, and play is run through a computer to bring the game to you. 

The Live Dealer Doesn’t See You 

While you’re looking at a real person, the live dealer is looking at a screen. It’s a fancy screen that shows the dealer information about who’s placed bets, which players still need to place bets, and who’s ready for the bets to close. The dealer can lock bets in, so once the wheel spins or the cards are drawn, the live game can continue seamlessly. Gamblers can talk to the dealer, too. There’s a live chat option that lets users interact with the dealer like they would at a real casino. 

The Cards And Wheels Are Monitored 

Gamblers may wonder how dealers can input blackjack or roulette information in real-time. However, dealers don’t have to worry about any of that. Blackjack cards, roulette wheels, and tables are tracked by cameras

The cameras send the card’s information to the computer, which acts as the engine for the live dealer game. Those cameras can tell the computer that the dealer just laid an ace of spades on the table. Then the computer can transmit that information to users. This chain of information spreads instantly. So, gamblers feel like they’re playing at a real casino and dealers can do their jobs like normal. 

With the rise of facial recognition technology, it shouldn’t be surprising that there are cameras that can read playing cards. Matching card symbols and numbers to game values is a mathematical equation that computers can solve. It can all be done without burdening the player or the dealer. They’re free to focus on the game while the cards, cameras, and computers run the show. 

Type Of Live Dealer Games

A few casino games stand out as live dealer favorites:

  • Live Dealer Blackjack
  • Live Dealer Poker 
  • Live Dealer Roulette
  • Live Dealer Baccarat

Here’s an overview of the most popular choices for online casino goers. 

Live Dealer Blackjack

Virtually every live dealer casino will include live blackjack options. Since players have mostly binary choices in blackjack (don’t give us a hard time about splitting sevens), it’s easy to offer in a live casino. Live dealer blackjack is available at most live dealer casinos. This is one of those games that uses cameras to capture card images and transmit them to players. Players can make their bets and decisions like they would at a real blackjack table. This will be one of the most seamless games for players moving online. 

Live Dealer Poker

Live dealer poker won’t be completely foreign to online casino players. It’s like a real poker table with a few improvements for the socially anxious poker player. Live chat remains available so the player and dealer can communicate. However, the dealer is as realistic as online poker will get. Players still can’t see each other to read body language the way they would at a poker table. Live dealer poker strategy will still resemble online poker strategy more than in-person poker strategy. While blackjack is one of the easiest games to transition online, online poker is one of the trickiest. 

Live Dealer Roulette

The biggest difference between roulette at a casino and roulette online is the camera angles players can watch the wheel spin from. Live dealer roulette will let players watch the wheel spin from multiple angles. Live dealer roulette is available at every live dealer sportsbook, too. Roulette numbers are basically left to chance. (Don’t believe the hype about hot numbers, as if proverbial lightning is expected to strike twice.) Roulette is rarely unavailable since little skill is required beyond managing the money on the board and player winnings. It can be a go-to for anyone looking for their fix. 

Live Dealer Baccarat

For players who don’t know, baccarat is fancy blackjack. Players bet on whether their cards or the dealer’s cards will add up closer to nine. The extra step of deciding whether to wager on the dealer makes the live chat important. However, that required interaction lends itself to a more human interaction that may make players feel like they’re playing with a real person. Players who want a full social experience should find the peak hours to have a table with other players. That’ll likely be in the evening when everyone’s home from work. 

How To Play Real Dealer Games Online

Live dealer casinos either have: 

  • Giant budgets to hire a dedicated staff of live dealers
  • Partnerships with companies that provide access to live dealer lobbies

In Pennsylvania, there are also two online casinos – soon to be three (with the launch of live dealer games at Hollywood Casino) – that offer live dealers. New Jersey offers more live dealer casinos than any other state, with nearly a dozen options, currently.

Registering For Online Casino Accounts

Players need to understand something important about registering for an online casino account with multi-product brands like DraftKings. Players with daily fantasy or sportsbook accounts still have to create online casino accounts. Online casinos may be available in your state, but they’re not available in every state DraftKing does business in. The online casino is a separate product from the sportsbook and daily fantasy sports accounts. 

New casino players can enter their emails, personal information, and go through a signup process similar to sportsbooks. Players with existing DraftKings accounts will have their information pulled to create new online casino accounts. 

Out-of-state players can also create online casino accounts with DraftKings, but they shouldn’t. Upon signup, DraftKings displays a message warning bettors that trying to wager outside of New Jersey is a crime, the bettor’s information has been recorded, and further violation attempts will result in “enforcement” procedures. Players shouldn’t run into this problem, but it’s a bug that DraftKings needs to eliminate before online casino players can travel again. 

Once players are signed up, they’ll have a list of deposit options, including: 

  • Online Banking
  • Credit/Debit Cards
  • Wire Transfers
  • Cash Deposit

Deposit options are more limited: 

  • PayPal 
  • Online Banking 
  • Check
  • Cash Withdrawal 

However players move money, they have convenient options at DraftKings’ online casino. After depositing, players can navigate to the live dealer sections of the casinos where they can choose a game, a lobby, and begin betting. 

The Best Live Dealer Blackjack App

Since DraftKings offers a library of blackjack games including: 

  • DraftKings-branded Blackjack
  • Sport-specific Blackjack
  • Pride Blackjack 
  • Standard Blackjack 

But for bettors who want to play live, DraftKings offers two live dealer blackjack lobbies. One is for standard blackjack. The other is for infinite blackjack. In infinite blackjack, every player gets the same hands, but they each decide whether they want to hit or stay. It also tends to have a lower bet limit than regular blackjack, which may be more attractive to low-risk players. Whatever players’ preferences, DraftKings has live dealers for them. 

The Best Live Dealer Poker App

DraftKings offers the best live dealer poker rooms. DraftKings offers two live dealer poker games: Three Card Poker and Ultimate Texas Hold ‘Em. Both games will appeal to poker fans who miss sitting around a poker table in a musty poker room. Once players enter the poker lobby, they’ll see the live dealer options DraftKings has available. Scrolling through the poker lobbies isn’t the fun part, but players may prefer a live dealer to a random card generator online. 

How To Deposit And Cash Out When Playing Live Dealer Games 

Players may be wondering how they can manage their bankrolls in the heat of a live dealer game. However, there are two ways to move money in and out of player accounts. First, players can deposit money before the game and withdraw money after the game. Players can go to their accounts to move money where it needs to go. Second, players can select the deposit option during the live dealer game. It offers a convenient way for players to refill their coffers mid-game. 

Obviously, online deposit options are the most popular ways to fund player accounts mid-game. That includes debit and credit cards. However, wire and bank transfers are popular options for bettors who manage their bankrolls outside of live dealer games. 

Is It Safe To Play Real Dealer Casino Games? 

Yes. As long as users are playing at regulated real dealer casinos, players should feel secure playing at a real dealer online casino. Regulated online casino companies are often experienced with online gaming. Many also offer online sportsbooks. That not only forces these companies to comply with the state gaming authority’s regulations. It also means that these companies have already created the infrastructure to support safe online gaming.  

Most online casinos use similar security methods as their sportsbooks. End-to-end encryption keeps hackers from looking at players’ screens and pulling bank information from players. The state gaming authority also regulates these companies to ensure they’re secure enough to let players deposit money. Players should stick to legit companies and feel as safe as anyone can gambling online. 

Live Dealer Casinos FAQs

Are Live Dealer Casinos Legal In Michigan? 

Yes, but they’re not yet live. This isn’t because live games are legally questionable. It’s actually because they’re expensive. Gaining access to existing live dealer tables is a project for companies, and Michigan’s casinos just went live in late January 2021.

Creating separate lobbies from scratch is even more cumbersome. However, a number of casinos such as DraftKings and FanDuel have already struck up deals with Evolution Gaming, so it’s likely that they will be providing live dealer options for their users in the near future.

How Do I Know Real Dealer Games Online Are Legit? 

If the provider is legit, then so are their real dealer games. The trick is finding legitimate online casinos with live dealer games and avoiding scam sites and unregulated sites. It would be easy for a charismatic live dealer to goad players into placing larger and larger bets. Professional live dealers wouldn’t do that. It would also be easy for unsavory live dealers to add legitimacy to a website that siphons social security numbers. 

Which Online Casinos Offer Live Dealer Games In New Jersey?

New Jersey has, by far, the largest number of online casinos in the US that offer live dealer games. The current and ever-growing list includes:

  • Golden Nugget
  • SugarHouse
  • BetMGM
  • DraftKings
  • BetAmeria
  • Betfair
  • Borgata
  • Party Casino
  • Hard Rock Atlantic City
  • 888 Casino
  • Resorts
  • Unibet
  • Mohegan Sun
  • Poker Stars Casino
Can I Play Live Poker Online In PA?

Yes. DraftKings online casino, for example, offers two different types of poker. Three card poker is a faster traditional poker game. Texas Hold ‘Em is the most popular type of poker. Regardless of how players like to play, you’re likely to find something that suits your style in Pennsylvania.

Other casinos that offer live dealer poker in PA include BetRivers and Hollywood Casino.

Are Offshore Live Dealer Casino Sites Safe? 

No. United States online casino regulations are strict. It’s part of internet betting being a new industry. States are legalizing it individually and doing so cautiously to make sure they don’t end up on the wrong side of history. However, offshore online casinos aren’t subject to the same regulations. At best, that means player information is less secure. At worst, it means offshore sportsbooks can hack players with impunity. 

Can I Play Real Dealer Games Online For Real Money? 

Yes. Most live dealer games are for real money. It’s an online casino, and it’s a for-profit company. It’s not a sweepstakes casino where players can play for free. It’s a real online casino for real money and players should treat it like one. Although, if funding online casino accounts with debit cards and bank accounts wasn’t a clue, hopefully, this page will be the clincher.

About the Author

Chris Gerlacher

Christopher is a sports betting enthusiast and online gaming expert from Colorado Springs.