Japan Gambling Market: Which Forms Of Gambling Are Popular?

Posted 5 months ago in More

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Japan has had a long history with gambling over the years, and is has been illegal since 1907. Although this doesn’t mean that all forms of gambling are illegal, only the ones that relate to casinos. There are many sports that can be bet on in Japan, such as horse, cycle, powerboat, and auto racing.

Taking into consideration how restrictive gambling can be in Japan, there is an option for having entertainment by choosing to gamble online. That is why a lot of casinos have started to expand their businesses online. Today you can find casino websites such as Japan-101 which is famous for providing help in finding the most popular games, by reviewing the best casinos, together with the promotions and bonuses that they offer. If you are interested to know more, you can click on this link and get familiar with their reviews.

There are also some forms of gambling that aren’t recognised as forms of gambling which are popular as well. If you are curious to know what the most popular forms of gambling are on the Japanese gambling market, here are a few.


Pachinko is easily the most popular form of gambling in Japan, even though it is not officially considered a form of gambling. The pachinko game is essentially a combination of a slot machine and pinball machine, where the object is to hit the jackpot, but players still earn tickets that can be exchanged for prizes at the venue, of which there are around 12,000 parlors to do so at. The tickets can also be exchanged for cash at off-site vendors, which is why it is considered to be a form of gambling.

Horse race betting

Horse race betting is another very popular form of gambling in Japan but doesn’t have the same standards as those in other countries. The main focus of horse race betting in Japan isn’t the horses themselves, but to place bets and win money. The reason the horses aren’t the focus is because the quality of them is restricted to prevent the industry from becoming too big, and the betting from becoming a problem.

Cycle race betting

If you are a fan of cycling, high speeds and large bets, then you wouldn’t be surprised to learn that among the other fast paced sports that are able to be bet on, cycling, or Keirin, is one of them. Cyclists usually compete on a 333 – 500m track, reaching speeds of around 60km/h, and cover a total distance of 2,000 – 3,000m. There are two venues at which the sports is available in Tokyo; Tachikawa Velodrome in Tachikawa, and Keiokaku Velodrome in Chofu.

Powerboat race betting

For those who are water lovers and enjoy the idea of speeding through water, Kyoutei, or powerboat racing, is available to be bet on too. This form of gambling is quite unique and very different to that of similar events around the world, and takes place on at sea, a river, or a lake. Like all sports to be bet on in Japan, it is fast paced and speeds of around 80kh/h are reached.

Motorcycle race betting

Betting on racing wouldn’t be complete if auto racing wasn’t included, which it is, and is one of the most popular forms of gambling that Japan has to offer. Racers reach quite high speeds of around 150km/h, and the race can be over quite quickly. The size of the tracks is relatively small at 500m, but racers have to complete 6 laps, making the total distance traveled at 3,000m, about the same as the Keirin tracks.

Soccer betting

Soccer betting, or otherwise known as Sports Shinko Kuji, is basically the same as sports betting available in western countries, where people are able to bet on either the outcome of a soccer match, or the exact score that will be reached. The only difference is that there are 3 types of betting available; you can bet on the outcome of either 3 games, 5 games or all 13. This form of gambling was always popular but has now become even more popular since being made available online.


Another form of gambling that isn’t officially considered a form of gambling is Maajan, or Mahjong as it is known in western countries. For those who are not familiar with what Maajan is, it is a tile-based game played with 144 tiles and receives 13 tiles to start with. The game itself is considered to be a skill-based game as players need to observe, use strategies and memory as well as adapt to situations as they occur. It can be compared to poker, in the way that the bets are placed, and is usually done with friends or family.


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