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Inside a Cunard Cruise Ship Casino – Games, Tables, and Smoking Policy

If you are taking your first cruise with Cunard you may be wondering if Cunard’s cruise ships have casinos.

Traditionally British cruise lines tend to have smaller Casinos than US lines – but Cunard are one British Cruise Line who do have quite large Casinos.

I have personally used the Casino onboard the Queen Victoria and Queen Mary 2.

Queen Mary 2
Queen Mary 2, Ocean Liner

Do Cunard Cruise Ships Have Casinos?

All Cunard cruise ships have casinos.

The casinos include slot games and tables and Cunard offers lessons for those who want to learn how to play the games while onboard. The Casinos are called the ‘Empire Casino’ and are Monte Carlo-inspired. 

There is a wide variety of games available for guests to play.

How Old Do You Have To Be To Gamble In The Casino On A Cunard Cruise?

Guests have to be 18 to gamble onboard.

The crew will be able to find out the age of cruisers from their cruise card so it’s unlikely that you would have to provide physical ID.

Cunard does typically have an older passenger demographic, and when I cruised with them at 23 I was probably the youngest person on board.

To learn more about what cruising with Cunard is like check out our recommended cruise lines page here: 

Recommended Cruise Lines.

Cunard Cruise Tables
Photo Credit: Lois, No Cruise Control.

Different cruise lines and destinations have different gambling ages onboard.

To learn more about this, including where the Cunard gambling age increases to 21, check out this post:

Can You Gamble on a Cruise at 18? Cruise Line Gambling Guide

What Is In The Casino on Cunard Cruise Ships?

The casino contains slot machine games and traditional gaming tables. According to the Cunard Website their casinos contain:

On Queen Mary 2 there are 9 gaming tables (including Roulette, Blackjack, Three card poker, Heads up Texas Hold’em*) and around 55 slot machines.

On Queen Elizabeth, there are 5 gaming tables (including Roulette, Blackjack, Three Card Poker, Fun 21) and 46 slot machines.

On Queen Victoria, there are 5 gaming tables (including Roulette, Blackjack, Three Card Poker, Fun 21) and 44 slot machines. 

*Please note this is not the regular Texas Hold’em table

Gaming lessons are generally available during the day. 

Most of the tables onboard have a minimum bet of around £3-£25 and a maximum of something in the region of £100-500.

Some slot machines do still take cash (notes), you could be spending as little as £1, 50p or 20p.

Cunard Cruise Casino
Photo Credit: Danny, Cruising Baker. 

How Big Are Cunard’s Casinos?

The casinos on Cunard cruise ships are a fair size.

All are located on deck 2 midship and they do take up a good proportion of this deck.

The Queens Room is located next to the Casino and this is where you’ll find afternoon tea.

There are also a few cabins here. If you do want to be really close to the casino, this is the perfect location!

Cunard Casino Deck 2

The casino is outside the Golden Lion pub where you can grab a British classic for lunch.

To learn more about what food is included on a Cunard cruise, including what you definitely shouldn’t miss, check out this post:

Do Cunard Cruises Include Meals? Your Guide To What Is Included

Can You Smoke in The Casino on Cunard Cruises?

Cruisers are not allowed to smoke in the Casino on Cunard cruise ships.

There are designated smoking areas on all Cunard ships and there is also a cigar lounge for those who want to use it.  The cigar lounge is reserved for cigar and pipe smokers.

All public spaces (with the exception of designated smoking areas) including restaurants and outdoor dining alternatives are designated as non smoking within the ship. Smoking is not permitted in staterooms, on balconies, or in public areas (with the exception of Churchill’s Cigar Lounge, which is reserved for cigar and pipe smokers only). 
Electronic cigarettes and vaporising devices, including those which do not emit smoke/vapour, are only permitted in designated smoking areas.


I took a cruise on the last Ocean Liner in service, Cunards Queen Mary 2. Find out how I got on here:

How do You Play Games in Cunard’s Casino?

Most games will be played using your cruise card.

It is possible to use cash to buy chips at the tables if you would prefer, and there are a limited number of machines that do accept cash.

Your cruise card will be linked to your cruise account. When you spend money on your cruise card it’ll create a charge on your cruise account and at the end of the cruise, you will receive a bill.

It’s very easy to spend more money than you mean to on your cruise card so if you have set yourself a budget make sure that you stick to it.

Cunard Cruise Casino Tables
Photo Credit: Lois, No Cruise Control.

When Will The Casino on a Cunard Cruise be Open?

Cruise ship casinos aren’t allowed to be open when they are docked or within certain waters.

For this reason, the cruise ship casino is often closed. The opening times depend entirely on the itinerary of the cruise and they are amended whenever necessary.

On a typical sea day, the casino may be open from around 11 am until they close. The closing time is up to the staff on board but it is worth noting that Cunard cruises are generally quite relaxed and as a result, most people go to bed pretty early.

During my cruise on the Queen Victoria, it wasn’t uncommon to walk around the ship at 10.30 pm and not see another person!

The casinos on board will only open when the ship is outside UK territorial waters which is generally 12 miles offshore (approximately 45 minutes after departure), as long as the cruise has an overseas port.
On voyages that do not have overseas ports, i.e an itinerary with only UK territory ports of call, we would be unable to open the casino because we would never be 12 miles outside UK territorial waters.


Unused Casino Chips

Unused casino chips must be cashed in on board.

If you accidentally forget to do this and take them home you must send them recorded delivery back to Cunard’s offices in Southampton.

As long as they are happy that the chips are “legitimate” they will give you a refund, although this may take some time.

It is better to cash in all your chips whilst onboard.

Before You Go

Find out more about Ocean Liners, and how they differ from cruise ships here:

Ocean Liners, They Still Exist: Here’s Everything You Need to Know

Find out how Cunard compares to the less formal cruise line, MSC below. They are worlds apart…

MSC vs Cunard – How do They Compare? (Dress Codes, Ships and Entertainment)

Free Insiders Cruise Line Guide

Ever wondered how the mainstream cruise lines compare? Cruise lines won’t tell you this, but I will.

This FREE guide shows you everything you need to know to find your perfect cruise line.