Online Gambling: A Guide to Legal Betting Sites
In 1996, the first online betting site accepted its first wager. Since then, online gaming and sporting events have enjoyed a pleasant union with only some minor hiccups along the way. From wagers as basic as picking the outcome of the Super Bowl, to more complex live bets, the internet is a magical place home to numerous legal betting sites offering great odds.
Sports betting is a multi-billion-dollar industry around the world, with people logging on daily to place bets on their favorite teams, matches and events. So, you’re probably asking yourself, “Where can I legally bet on sports?” This page will answer that question, as well as inquiries you didn’t even know you had! We can’t read your mind, but we can explain legal online betting and the regulations that are in place to ensure you have a great betting experience, whether you’re in the United States, Canada, Europe or anywhere else around the globe.
Best Legal Sports Betting Sites
LeoVegas Sportsbook Review
When it comes to top-notch sportsbooks, LeoVegas is the one to beat. With lines and odds on all your favorite sports like baseball, football, hockey, basketball, tennis and more, this online betting site has you covered. They also offer an ample first deposit bonus and a VIP loyalty program with free bets to keep customers coming back for more betting fun.
- Multiple deposit options
- Great bonuses
- Features most North American sports
Known for their killer Welcome Bonus and refer-a-friend program, BetOnline.ag is focused on the bettor. Choose from player props to $125 worth of risk-free bets when you use this sportsbook for your wagering needs. They also boast early lines and quick payouts, making them one of the most respected in the industry.
With multiple bonuses to choose from, Intertops is your one-stop shop for betting on everything from soccer, football, baseball, tennis, basketball, esports and more. This online sportsbook gives you over 4,000 daily wagers and live scoring so you can track your bets in real time. Plus, their mobile betting site is just as easy to use as their desktop version.
Is Online Sports Betting Legal?
The legality of online gaming changes from country to country. For example, in Canada there are no laws against betting. However, in the U.S., each state is in charge of creating their own regulations. Many countries around the world do allow legal online sports betting sites to operate in their country, with many reputable companies setting up shop there. Below you’ll find a list detailing legal sports wagering by country.
United States Betting
Currently you can bet on sports online in Delaware, Nevada, New Jersey, Pennsylvania, Tennessee and D.C. – not a state, but considered one for the purpose of online betting regulation. Legislation is currently underway in other states, expected to pass in late 2019. Unfortunately, if you reside in the parts of the United States where betting isn’t legalized, you cannot bet online. Look for states like Rhode Island and West Virginia to pass laws in favor of legal sports betting in the near future.
States like New Jersey are big proponents of daily fantasy sports (DFS) sites, like Draft Kings, where the odds are based on individual players and not outcomes of games. However, that doesn’t mean you have to stick to DFS. You can visit any legal sports betting site you wish.
Canada does not have laws against online betting. Canadians can bet on sports without consequences at any of the sportsbooks we list above, whether you dwell in Toronto, Montreal, Vancouver or Flin Flon, Manitoba – yes, it’s a real place. Odds are available for all the sports Canadians love, especially hockey.
The framework is in place to fully legalize sports betting in Brazil. A law was signed by the country’s president in late 2018 giving the Ministry of Finance permission to create a regulatory system to allow Brazilians to bet on sports lawfully within two years.
Betting online in Mexico is legal as long as there’s no physical interaction between the bettor and the site operators. So, as long as you don’t have contact with anyone who works for the sportsbook you’re using for online sports betting, you can bet on sports online.
United Kingdom Betting
The U.K. has one of the most robust legal online gaming industries in the world. As long as you’re of legal betting age, you’re free to wager online at any sportsbook you wish. Betting sites even maintain physical locations where you can cash in your winnings after you’ve dominated your football bets.
There are no central wagering regulations in place for the entire country because online betting in India is controlled by each individual state. Depending on where in India you live, you may be allowed to legally bet sports on the internet.
Betting in Other European Countries
The European Gaming and Betting Association (EGBA) was put in place in 2007 to create a secure digital environment for bettors across Europe – whether you’re in Germany, Italy, Sweden, France or Spain. Located in Belgium, the EGBA ensures that players from across the European Union can play freely at legal gambling sites.
What to Look for in Legal Sports Betting Sites
Sportsbooks are like bricks. Although they may look alike and offer the same sports betting options, there are some you wouldn’t want to build a house with. When we assess legal wagering sites, we look for:
- Bet offers – What type of bets can you make? Moneyline? Point spread? Totals?
- Bonuses – What are the incentives offered to users? Are there bonus programs or loyalty rewards when you bet on certain sports?
- User interface – Is the site easy to navigate from a phone and desktop? Mobile betting is where the industry is headed and it’s important that the legal gaming site looks clean on your smartphone and tablet.
- Deposit and withdrawal options – What payment methods can you use to fund your account? How long does it take to collect your winnings?
- Trustworthiness – Does the legal sports betting site have favorable reviews and a stellar reputation?
- Customer service – What happens if you need to reach someone at the betting site? Is there a live chat, email or phone number?
- Currencies and languages – Are there different currency and language options? Can you bet in USD, CAD, euros or rupees? Is the site available in English, Spanish, French or Portuguese?
We also look at the type of sports available. Most legal sportsbooks allow you to wager on the NFL, NBA, MLB, NHL, UFC, boxing, cricket, college sports (NCAA football, NCAA basketball), soccer (EPL, MLS, Champions League), tennis (men’s and women’s) and golf. You’ll also find odds for motorsports like NASCAR and F1, politics (elections), and entertainment (awards shows). Furthermore, the majority of legal books have casino games (blackjack, poker, roulette, slot machines) and a racebook for horse betting as part of their bet offering.
Signing up at a Legal Sportsbook
Once you’ve selected one of the betting sites we recommend from the list above, you’re ready to sign up. You’ll need your email and deposit method of choice. Sportsbooks let you use everything from credit cards (Visa, MasterCard, American Express), to e-wallets (PayPal, Neteller, Skrill, ecoPayz), to debit and money orders. Another popular deposit method is Bitcoin. Available at most legal sites, this cryptocurrency provides an easy way to deposit and withdraw from your sportsbook account. Depending on the method you choose, it can take anywhere from seconds to 24 hours to fund your account.
No matter if you’re in New Jersey, Manchester, Sikkim or Winnipeg, there are sports betting sites available to you. Simply pick one of the legal gaming sites we endorse and start betting.