Casino gambling is largely prohibited in Texas, with the only exception being for operations held on tribal lands. Because there aren’t any federally recognized tribes in the DFW area, you won’t find any casinos in Dallas, save for online social/sweepstakes casinos that aren’t played for money.
In this piece, we’ll take a look at what legal obstacles are keeping casinos from operating in Dallas, as well as what the gambling scene would look like if new legislation permits casino operations in the area.
Are there any land-based casinos in Dallas?
No, there are no land-based casinos in Dallas. Texas laws surrounding gambling are extremely restrictive, and it is only through the Indian Gaming Regulatory Act that casinos are permitted to host gambling operations on tribal lands. Dallas isn’t close enough to any of those lands that casinos could obtain licensure without a massive change in opinion among Texas legislators to allow the practice.
Are any casinos opening in Dallas in the near future?
No, there are no casinos opening in Dallas in the near future. It would take years before brick-and-mortar facilities would be allowed to operate, let alone be built and running because casino gambling isn’t legal in Texas unless it is on tribal land.
During the 2023 legislative session, House Bill 2843 was introduced to legalize casino gambling throughout the state. However, the bill did not advance to a vote before the end of the 2023 session, and since Texas only holds sessions every other year, the next opportunity to legalize would be in 2025.
According to the Dallas Morning News, Texas loses around $3 billion in gambling activity annually to neighboring states.
What types of games could you play at Dallas casinos if any open?
If Dallas casinos were to open tomorrow and instantly hold legal status, it’s likely many of the iconic casino games like blackjack, craps, and roulette would all still be illegal. This is because the only legal casinos in Texas are Class II betting facilities; only Class III operations are permitted to host those games.
Instead, these are the games you’d be more likely to see early on at Dallas casinos.