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El Salvador Gambling

Salvadoran Gambling Laws

By Reno Rollins

In 1882, regulations were imposed against games which required betting. However, these regulations were largely ignored.

In 2002, the congress of El Salvador voted to outlaw gambling by enforcing the regulations originally approved in 1882. Under this law, casinos would be allowed to stay open, but they could not sponsor any type of gambling, with the exception of the lottery.

This law was later overturned, as modern Salvadoran casinos offer slot machines and table games.

Casinos in El Salvador

There are currently two casinos in El Salvador. They are:

- Siesta Hotel and Casino (Boulevard Los Proceres, Guadalupe, San Salvador, El Salvador) Open 24 hours a day, this casino offers 100 gaming machines and four table games. For more information, call +503 283 0100.

- Monte Carlo Casino (Central Ville, Santa Ana, El Salvador) For more information on this casino, call +503 440 2877.

Lottery in El Salvador

Loteria Nacional de Beneficencia was founded on July 5th, 1870. The original name was Loteria del Hospital. The first lottery drawing was held on January 1st, 1871.

Initially, drawing were held three times per year. In 1900, it was changed to once per month.

Retailers are located in the following cities:

- San Salvador
- Santa Ana
- Sonsonate
- Chalchuapa
- Zacatecoluca
- Usulutan
- San Miguel
- Santa Rosa de Lima
- Apopa
- Santa Tecla

The following lottery games are available:

Lotin - The scratch lottery game became available on December 12th, 1988. Since that time, over 363 million tickets have been sold.

Lotra - These are the traditional lottery draws. They are also known as La Millonaria, Especial del Billetero and Extraordinario. The latter has a top prize of $200,000, while the others pay out $125,000 for the first prize.

For more information, you may call 503-260-8135, or visit their website at

Facts About El Salvador

Located in Central America, El Salvador borders Guatemala and Honduras. The population of the country is estimated to be 6.9 million.

El Salvador is divided into 14 departments. They are:

- Ahuachapan
- Cabanas
- Chalatenango
- Cuscatlan
- La Libertad
- La Paz
- La Union
- Morazan
- San Miguel
- San Salvador
- San Vicente
- Santa Ana
- Sonsonate
- Usulutan

While the economy of El Salvador has grown steadily in recent years, it was once hampered by hurricanes and earthquakes. In 2001, the U.S. dollar became legal tender along with the Salvadoran colon. By 2004, the colon was no longer in circulation.

Ninety percent of the population are mestizo, which is a mix of Spanish and Native American. Other nationalities in El Salvador include French, German, Swiss and Italian. About one percent of the population is made up of indigenous Pipil and Lenca. El Salvador is the only Central American country with no significant African population.

The official language of El Salvador is Spanish. English is also spoken by a large number of citizens, especially those who have lived or studied in English-speaking countries.

Roman Catholicism is the dominant religion in the country, but Protestantism is on the rise. Other religions groups include: Mormons, Pentecostals, Methodists, Presbyterians, Anglicans and Seventh-Day Adventists.

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