Useful tips

Three things to know before betting in California

Unless you have been living under a rock since 2018, you would have noticed that things are changing across the United States with regard to online gambling. For generations – as long as we can remember – betting has been forbidden across the US other than at a few horse racing tracks, tribe owned casinos and other exceptions.

The majority of betting was done in Las Vegas, where gambling was legal, but for most Americans, a trip to Sin City was a long journey. This led to “betting tourists” arriving in Nevada for the weekend to place bets, and many ended up spending more cash than they had planned. The removal of the blanket ban should help combat problem gambling.

What does the future hold for betting in the US? It’s difficult to say, and the subject can be confusing as it isn’t one rule across the United States. The gambling laws differ from state to state. For example, you will be free to wager on the NFL or play Roulette using your smartphone in New Jersey, but an attempt to gamble in California could land you in hot water with the police knocking at your door.

We understand the subject of online gambling can feel rather confusing or even put you off enjoying sportsbook betting. That should never be the case as there’s much joy and excitement to be had betting on your favourite sports, competitions, teams and players. This article is designed to help keep you on the right road. We tackle some of your burning betting questions, offering short, helpful answers.

Is online gambling legal in California?

Online sportsbook or casino gambling isn’t legal in California, and any attempt to place a bet would be against the law. There are fines and other severe punishments in place to deter residents and visitors from placing bets on sports. There are some underground and illegal sportsbooks, while some try to find a loophole to the rules by wagering through an overseas bookmaker. We would strongly advise attempting to do either.

Although the White House has lifted the US betting ban, that doesn’t mean you can gamble in every state. Each area was given a decision to keep the ban on betting in place or scrap it. New Jersey was the first to act when legalising betting, while others preferred to stick hard to their anti-gaming rules.

Then there are the states that remain on the fence, undecided on the matter of legalising betting. States like California and New York seem in no rush but will put the matter to a vote, expected to take place later this year. Californians are expected to have their say on betting in November 2022, and we could see gambling legalised in the state in time for the next Super Bowl that will be played in February 2023.

Can I use my mobile to gamble with an overseas bookie?

Some people believe they can bend the rules to suit them, but that is a bad idea. They believe downloading an overseas bookie to their smartphone and using that to wager on their favourite sports will see them jump the queue.

The rules regarding betting in California are outdated, drawn up many years before technology allowed us to wager from our desktop computers and smartphones. This leaves the rules open to interpretation to a degree, but that doesn’t mean you should try to cheat the rulebook. Stick to the rules in your state, and if you wish to place a bet, it’s worth travelling to the nearest state where betting is permitted.

What should I do to prepare for legalised gambling?

If gambling is legalised in California later this year, there are some things you can do to prepare. The first would be to choose a betting app that suits you and secure the welcome bonus free bet.

Study each available bookie in detail and read the terms and conditions to get a strong idea of what to expect. You can then register an account at a bookie using your smartphone or laptop. This takes just a few minutes to complete, and you must do this only once to get set up.