Is Online Sports Betting Legal in Pennsylvania?
Yes. Sports betting in Pennsylvania was legalized in 2018. The state’s first in-person sports bet was placed in November 2018. Online sports betting launched in May 2019. By the start of 2021, 12 legal sports betting sites were operating, with more on the way. Each of the state’s online sportsbooks is partnered with one of the state’s land-based casinos.
Unlike offshore sports betting sites, which operate with no legitimate oversight or regulation and provide few safeguards for players, the PA sports betting industry is fully regulated by the Pennsylvania Gaming Control Board.
PA sportsbooks handled more than $2.5 billion in sports bets during the 2020-21 fiscal year, according to the PGCB. More than 90% of those wagers were placed online. The Keystone State has a dozen online sportsbooks, offering every sports bettor plenty of choices.
PennStakes.com provides information on the state’s top online sportsbook apps and bonus offers, along with PA-specific rules and regulations.
Legal PA Sportsbooks
Partner of The Meadows Casino and Racetrack is No. 2 in the state in online sports betting handle. A national leader in sports wagering and daily fantasy sports, DraftKings sportsbook is one of the most downloaded apps in the sports betting industry with plenty of traditional and live betting options.
Recent addition to the Pennsylvania sports betting market through a partnership with Hollywood Casino Morgantown, a mini-casino set to open later in 2021. BetMGM sportsbook is aggressively expanding its online footprint and enters PA as official betting partner of the Pittsburgh Steelers and Philadelphia 76ers.
The first online sports betting site to launch in Pennsylvania. Mobile sports betting app is easy to navigate, and its bonus offers are redeemable with minimum playthrough requirements. Partnered with Rivers Casino Philadelphia.
The leading PA sports betting site. Partnered with Valley Forge Casino and Live! Philadelphia, FanDuel is one of the most recognizable brands in sports betting. Solid bonus offers and promotions with a robust betting menu.
Partner of Mount Airy Casino is a popular online option in PA and New Jersey. Uses Fox Sports personalities to analyze games and make predictions, then applies daily odds boosts and other promotions to those games.
Offers similar online betting experience as PlaySugarHouse, both owned by Rush Street Gaming. Online sports betting platform now available in more than a half-dozen states.
Global-based sports betting operator is partnered with Mohegan Sun Pocono and teamed up as a casino/sportsbook partner of Philadelphia Eagles. Deep betting menu includes a wide range of international sports and betting lines.
One of the most famous names in gambling and owner of Harrah’s Philadelphia entered PA sports betting market in 2020. Online sports betting app is easy to use and company’s loyalty rewards program is one of the most popular in the industry.
The Bensalem casino/racetrack is one of the state’s leaders in retail sports betting and has expanded its online presence to New Jersey and Michigan. Parx sportsbook offers vast menu of traditional and in-game wagering options on major and lesser-known sports.
Churchill Downs-owned company is in process of relaunching its digital gaming platform (sportsbook, online casino, horse racing) to TwinSpires brand. Partner of Presque Isle Downs and Casino offers competitive betting lines and plenty of payment options.
Penn National Gaming chose Pennsylvania as the first state to launch its fast-growing Barstool sportsbook. Barstool uses founder Dave Portnoy and other personalities to draw attention to its brand. Sportsbook app provides a full range of bonus and promotion offers.
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How Online Sports Betting Works in Pennsylvania
To sign up for an account, choose a PA online sportsbook. Then go to the casino’s website or download the online sports betting app from the App Store. Click on ‘’create an account’’ and respond to the prompts to provide information such as name, email address, phone number, etc. When your information is submitted and verified, your account is created.
An online sportsbook account can be set up from any state, but players must be located inside Pennsylvania to place a legal wager. Betting sites use geolocation technology to verify your location, as required by state regulators.
In-Game Wagering and Live Betting
In-game wagering is legal in Pennsylvania and allows for wagers to be placed while a game is in progress. Betting options include adjusted point spreads, totals and proposition bets. As the game develops, odds are updated in real time by a computer algorithms developed by sportsbooks.
Sports You Can Bet On Right Now
PA sports betting law allows wagering on pro and college sports events with virtually no restrictions. Most PA sportsbooks offer a list of about 20 sports, including football, baseball, basketball, hockey, soccer, golf, tennis, motorsports, MMA, boxing and less popular international sports, such as cricket, cycling and table tennis. Bettors can place wagers on all games involving the state’s pro and college-based teams. Wagering is not allowed on events such as the NFL Draft, award shows and political elections.
NFL Betting in Pennsylvania
Americans bet more money on the NFL than any other sports league. That’s clearly the case in PA, which has a pair of NFL teams, the Philadelphia Eagles and Pittsburgh Steelers. The Steelers’ six Super Bowl titles is tied for the most of any team, along with New England. The Eagles won Super Bowl LII in 2018. Bettors can wager on all NFL games and futures with no restrictions.
NHL Betting in Pennsylvania
Pennsylvania is home to a pair of NHL East Division teams, the Philadelphia Flyers and Pittsburgh Penguins (the two have combined to win seven Stanley Cups). NHL wagering is geared more toward betting on the moneyline (teams to win outright) than point spreads – which are known as puck lines and set at +/- 1.5 goals.
NBA Betting in Pennsylvania
The Philadelphia 76ers play in the NBA’s Eastern Conference and have won three NBA championships (none since 1983). A full range of point spread, moneyline, totals, futures and prop bets are available for all NBA games.
MLB Betting in Pennsylvania
The Pittsburgh Pirates and Philadelphia Phillies, both in the National League, are Pennsylvania’s MLB teams. Of the two, the Phillies were the last to win the World Series in 2008. PA bettors have several MLB wagering options, including run line, moneyline, props and futures bets such as on the World Series or Cy Young winner.
College Football Betting in Pennsylvania
Penn State (Big Ten) and Pitt (ACC) are the most popular college football programs in Pennsylvania. Both are among the 30 winningest NCAA teams of all time. Bettors can wager on or against both teams with no restrictions as part of a full college football betting menu.
College Basketball Betting in Pennsylvania
PA is home to several popular Division I college basketball programs, including three-time NCAA champion Villanova, Temple, Penn State, Pitt, St. Joseph’s, Penn, La Salle, Duquesne, Robert Morris, Drexel and Bucknell. That gives bettors plenty of options during college basketball season and throughout March Madness.
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What Types of Bets are Allowed?
All of the most popular wagers are permitted at Pennsylvania sportsbooks, including:
Point spread: Bettors chose the favorite or underdog in a specific game. A favorite must win by more than the spread; the underdog pays with either an outright win or with a loss by fewer points than the spread.
Moneyline: A wager on a team to win a game. No point spread. Favorites have negative odds; underdogs positive odds. If a favorite is -150, a bettor must wager $150 to win $100. If an underdog is +180, a $100 bet would net $180 in profit.
Totals: A bet that the total number of combined points in a game will go over or under the total set by the sportsbook.
Parlay: Wager combining two or more games, all of which must win to pay.
Futures: Betting on a future event, such as who will win the Super Bowl before or during the NFL season.
Prop bet: A wager that may or may not have a direct impact on the game, such as the Super Bowl coin toss or how many touchdowns Ben Roethlisberger will throw in a specific quarter or half.
In-game: Bets that are placed with the game in progress. Also known as live betting, odds are updated in real time by a computer algorithms.
PA Sportsbook Bonuses and Promotions
PA online sportsbooks offer a variety of bonuses and promotions to sign up new players and retain existing ones. Examples of bonus offers include free first bet, welcome bonus and deposit match. Some bonus offers include wagering restrictions, so it’s important to read terms and conditions.
How to Deposit Money and Cash Out Winnings
PA online sportsbooks offer a variety of deposit and withdrawal methods. Deposits can be instantaneous, depending on the method chosen. Most PA online sportsbooks accept:
- Credit/debit cards
- E-wallets such as PayPal, Neteller or Skrill
- Prepaid cards
- Bank or wire transfer
- Cash at the casino cage affiliated with your online sportsbook
Withdrawal requests can be made at any time. Simply click on the “request a withdrawal’’ button and follow the prompts. It’s easiest to make withdrawals with the same method used to deposit, if available. Withdrawals generally take longer to process.
PA Sports Betting Revenue
Mobile and online platforms continue to drive PA sports betting. Of the more than $2.5 billion in handle during the 2020-21 fiscal year, nearly 92% was placed online. FanDuel was the state leader in online sports betting handle during the most recent calendar year, followed by DraftKings. Sports wagers produced more $50 million in state and local taxes.
PA Monthly Wagers and Revenue
A breakdown of monthly betting handle for PA online sportsbooks:
PENNSYLVANIA SPORTS BETTING, APRIL 2021 VS. MARCH 2021
|Total Handle||Mobile Handle||Gross Revenue|
|Change||Down 14.4%||Down 14.6%||Down 10.4%|
Pennsylvania Teams with Sportsbook Sponsorship Deals
Initially, pro sports teams and leagues were hesitant about entering into deals with sportsbook and casino operators. Now that sports wagering has become mainstream, sponsorship deals are commonplace, with several involving PA sports teams. Among the announced deals:
Pittsburgh Steelers and BetMGM
The NFL team selected the MGM digital platform as its first gaming partner. The deal allows BetMGM to sponsor the Steelers pre-game show and other programming, along with digital signage and awarding of team merchandise and season tickets.
Philadelphia Eagles and DraftKings, Unibet, FOX Bet
The NFL team has reached several deals with major online sports operators. In 2020, the Eagles announced a multiyear deal to make DraftKings sportsbook their official sports betting and daily fantasy sports partner, a year after the Eagles entered into a casino/sportsbook partnership with Unibet. The Eagles also announced a deal with FOX Bet for a branded interactive studio at their home stadium, Lincoln Financial Field.
Philadelphia 76ers and BetMGM, Parx
The two sides announced a partnership in December 2020 that makes BetMGM the official sports betting partner of the NBA team. The deal includes signage during 76ers games and promotions within the 76ers app. The Atlantic City Borgata (also owned by MGM Resorts) is the “Official Away Game Host of the 76ers.’’ The NBA team also has a deal with Parx as its “official local casino.’’
Philadelphia Flyers and PlaySugarHouse.com
SugarHouse Casino and PlaySugarHouse.com became the official sportsbook casino for the NHL team in an agreement signed before the 2019-20 season.
Pittsburgh Penguins and BetRivers.com
In a multiyear agreement announced in September 2020, the Penguins named BetRivers.com and Rivers Casino Pittsburgh as the NHL’s team official sportsbook and casino.
NHL and PointsBet
In February 2021, the NHL reached a sports betting partnership with PointsBet, allowing the online betting site to integrate content into its live NHL broadcasts.
Philadelphia Union and Parx Casino
A 2019 deal allowed Parx Casino to partner on local broadcasts with the Union, a Major League Soccer club.
PA Sports Betting FAQ
The minimum legal age to bet on sports in Pennsylvania is 21.
Go to your PA sports betting site or download the sportsbook app directly from the App Store. Fill out some personal information (name, address, etc.) to create an account. Once your account is funded, you are ready to wager. You will likely need a government-issued ID (driver’s license, US passport) and recent utility bills to further establish identity and address.
PA sports betting is regulated by the Pennsylvania Gaming Control Board, which enforces the state’s sports betting laws and regulations.
Yes. Online and in-person sports betting are legal in Pennsylvania. Retail sportsbooks began accepting wagers in 2018; the first online sports betting site launched the following year.
You can bet on sports with any of the state’s 12 mobile sports betting sites or at a retail sportsbook inside any of the state casinos or racinos across the state.
Yes. Bettors must be located inside the state to place a legal wager. Geofencing technology and IP address identification are used to pinpoint a sports bettor’s location.
All the major pro and college sports with no restrictions. The list includes, but is not limited to, football, basketball, baseball, hockey, motorsports, soccer, golf, tennis, MMA, boxing and international sports such as cycling, rugby and cricket.
Yes. Both DraftKings and FanDuel are legal in Pennsylvania and operate legal sports betting sites.
You should avoid offshore betting in Pennsylvania because it’s risky and unnecessary. Offshore sports betting sites work around US laws and are unregulated. Withdrawals are risky because U.S. banks aren’t allowed to knowingly transact with offshore betting sites. The Pennsylvania Gaming Control Board offers bettors potential recourse if any problems exist with their Pennsylvania sports betting account; offshore sites offer no recourse and can shut down without warning.
Several problem gambling support groups are available in PA. The list includes the PA Gambling Addiction 24-hour hotline (1-800-GAMBLER) and the Council on Compulsive Gambling of Pennsylvania. You can also self-exclude from sports betting for a period of time by contacting the Pennsylvania Gaming Control Board (gamingcontrolboard.pa.gov) and joining their Self-Exclusion Program.
A successful handicapper with more than a decade in the sports and gambling industry, Adam enjoys writing about (and playing) poker.