Marketing Games and the Dutch Gambling Law

Marketing games, or 'hyper casual games' as they are also known, come in many shapes and sizes. We often get asked whether a game falls under the Dutch Gambling Act.

In this article, we explain which types of games are exactly covered by the Dutch Gambling Act and what you need to consider.

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What is a Game of Chance?

A game of chance is a game where luck determines whether the participant wins a prize. With us, the outcome is almost always predetermined by an algorithm that distributes prizes to participants over the campaign period. Therefore, a game of chance is a game where, as a participant, you cannot influence winning a prize.

The opposite of a game of chance is a skill game, where the participant can influence winning a prize through specific knowledge or skill in the game. For example, being the fastest, knowing all the answers, or achieving the highest score can ultimately win you a prize.

What is a Marketing Game?

A marketing game can be either a game of chance or a skill game. The type you choose depends on the game's approach. With a skill game, you do not deal with the gambling law. However, most games we make at Ratsibambam are free games of chance. These games are called:

Promotional Games of Chance

by the Dutch Gambling Authority. The words “promotional,” “prizes,” and “free” are crucial here. You do not need a license, but you must comply with the code of conduct for promotional games of chance.

Code of Conduct for Promotional Games of Chance

A promotional game of chance is temporary and has a maximum of 20 draws per year. The temporary nature is a fairly interpretable concept. We have clients who run a game 360 days a year with monthly draws of winners. The time span over which the draw is done is also undefined. A draw can easily last 30 days.

Additionally, a promotional game of chance can be used for only one product or service per year.


A soft drink manufacturer named FRIS may promote the brand FRIS once per year with a promotional game of chance. Additionally, FRIS can promote its product FRIS Light once per year based on a promotional game of chance. In the same year, FRIS can also offer a promotional game of chance for its orange juice product. The same example can be given with flavor variants of a product. These are considered separate products.

Regular or Small Promotional Game of Chance

The code of conduct distinguishes between a ‘small promotional game of chance’ and a ‘regular promotional game of chance.’ It is considered a small promotional game of chance if the total prizes have a maximum value of 4,500 Euros. Fewer conditions need to be met than for a regular promotional game of chance. For example, the number of draws is less restricted, and you can run an unlimited number of games of chance per product or service.

A regular promotional game of chance can give away up to 100,000 Euros in prizes per product or service per year.


There are many other topics discussed in the code of conduct, such as participation by minors and the mandatory offering of promotional terms and conditions. Here is a brief summary of the main rules:

The full rules of the code of conduct for promotional games of chance can be viewed here.

Gambling Tax

If you organize a game of chance, you must pay gambling tax on any prize above 449 Euros. The current rate is 30.5%. So if you award a prize of 1,000 Euros, the actual value for the tax authorities is 1,350 Euros.

It is generally the game organizer who pays the tax on the prize. Keep this in mind when awarding your prizes. Read here more on the site of the Belastingdienst about the declaration of gambling tax.


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