Last updated on: March 16th, 2023

Countries With Legal Sports Betting

There are dozens of countries with legal sports betting available to their residents. The global sports betting industry is a roughly $150b yearly and its potential economic benefit is lucrative. Some companies partnerships with U.S.-based sportsbooks. But many others keep to their country. The sports betting industry evolving all over. At Legal Sports Betting we aim to provide needed worldwide sports betting information. Whether you’re a resident or a vacationer, this page can help build your international sports betting knowledge.

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Legal Sports Betting In ArgentinaSports betting is indeed legal in Argentina, but there are some serious limitations. The state of Argentina sports betting is similar to the US before the repeal of the Professional and Amateur Sports Protection Act (PASPA). Horse racing is considered legal in all parts of Argentina. Gambling on horse races was established in the 1880s but it was banned and re-established multiple times, ending on legal status. If you go to Buenos Aries, you have more options. Online sports betting is legal in Buenos Aries and you can bet on esports, horse races, and most other sporting events. The main thing that you cannot wager on in Buenos Aries (or the rest of Argentina) is political events. But for now, sports betting on non pari-mutuel sports is restricted to Buenos Aries. You cannot go to the rest of the country and bet on the same sports. The tax revenue collected from sports betting and horse wagers go back into fueling sports being played in Argentina.

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Legal Sports Betting In AustraliaIf you are looking for a country with one of the most developed sports betting markets, then you should check out Australia. Horse races were legalized in Australia back in 1810 and the full sports betting market eventually came in the picture in 1980. Australia has sports betting parlors all over the country. Online sports betting is allowed as well. The only restriction they have is a ban on how many sportsbook ads are aired. Other than that, sports betting has no real restrictions on the land down under.

Australia does not just have a presence within their own country. As the United States has fresh new sports betting market, sportsbook providers from Australia have begun to set up shop in the US. Australian companies are helping to provide sportsbook operations to various casinos in the US. This allows casinos to have sportsbooks with years of experience even though sports betting is new in the US.

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Legal Sports Betting In BrazilMuch like the United States, Brazil sports betting is rather new. Back in December of 2018, Brazil sports betting was formally legalized. The new law allows both retail and online sportsbooks to be active in the country but there are some legal challenges to Brazilian sports betting. The individual states want control of taxation and distribution. Due to the massive size of the country, Brazil sports betting will attract many sportsbook operators from around the world. For now, most of the Brazilian sports betting will happen through online offshore sportsbooks as the country works towards creating their own brand of sportsbooks.

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Legal Sports Betting In CanadaTo put it simply, Canada does offer sports betting. But it is not just as simple as that. Sports betting is not federally restricted in Canada. Canadian sports betting laws are through both the federal government and the government of each province. For example, Alberta sportsbooks can only operate through a setlist of gambling brands but Alberta currently does not have online sports betting websites.

British Columbia also has legal sports betting as well, but they will only allow sports betting at six different websites. Each site is free to enforce restrictions, such as what game odds they offer and betting sizes. In Ontario, online sportsbooks are allowed, but single-game wagering is not. So much like with the United States, you cannot paint a broad brush on Canadian sports betting. Each province has their own situation to deal with, and they vary on how they offer sports betting to people in Canada.

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Legal Sports Betting In ChinaChina is basically the country that invented gambling. The Chinese people have been gaming since ancient times and they have developed many different games. Although now, the Chinese government does look down on gambling and has restricted most forms of it. But sports betting is up and active in Hong Kong and Macau. The Hong Kong Jockey Club is the only legal bookmaker in Hong Kong. Macau does allow sports betting, but they are lacking proper facilities.

China’s sportsbooks are usually done by a sports lottery. That is when sports bettors place pooled bets on either European soccer or American basketball. The reason this is allowed is that the Chinese government does not consider lotteries as a form of gambling. Not everyone in China is satisfied with only this. Most of the Chinese sports bettors take their money and go to online sportsbooks. Although the Chinese government has blocked many sites, the sports bettors know how to get around the online blockade and are good at finding alternatives.

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Legal Sports Betting In ColombiaIf you are living in Colombia or are planning a trip to the South American country, you should know that sports betting is regulated and legal. Retail sports betting has been going on since 2001, but it was not until 2016 that online sports betting became legal. But the sports betting operator, Coljuegos, has put a blacklist on 325 sportsbook operators in Colombia. The blacklist includes companies such as William Hill, Betfair, and Ladbrokes.

The regulations have softened since 2017, so more international sportsbook operators can join in. Once Coljuegos stepped in to regulate Colombian sports betting, betting on sports became much safer. Soccer definitely the number one sport to bet on while you are in Colombia, but that is not all they have to offer. You can bet on a number of international sports such as baseball, American football, and other major sporting events.

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Costa Rica

Legal Sports Betting In Costa RicaCosta Rica sports betting is both legal and licensed. However, there are a few catches that you need to be aware of. Costa Rica might have legal sports betting, but the government does not allow for land-based sports betting. Most of the sports betting in Costa Rica is done online in a server. So, although you cannot bet on sports at a retail location, online sports betting is thriving in Costa Rica.

Many famous online sportsbooks set up shop in Costa Rica due to the progressive views the country has on sports betting. Costa Rican online sportsbooks take action mostly on American football, soccer, and baseball. Since famous sportsbooks are based here, you can bet on a large number of sporting events around the world.

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Legal Sports Betting In GhanaIn case you did not know, sports betting is completely legal in Ghana. In fact, sports betting has been established in Ghana for a long time. Ever since 1960, the residents of Ghana have been betting on a variety of sports. People living or visiting Ghana are free to bet on nearly all sporting events. This can be done in two different ways. You can either go to a sports betting parlor or you can use an online sportsbook in Ghana.

Sports betting has been very good for Ghana. There are a couple of different soccer clubs that are based in the country. Some of the clubs used to be strapped for cash but some of the sportsbooks have sponsored these clubs. Major sporting events in Ghana also receive advertisements and funds in connection with sports betting. Although low-income populations in Ghana suffer from addiction problems, sports betting has been overall good for the country.

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Legal Sports Betting In IndiaIndia does have some sports betting, but it depends on where you are. Much like the United States, India has states within their country and they are all operated by local governments. So, it really depends on location. As far as sports betting, do not have too many options in India. Horse racing is going to be the main form of sports betting in India. There are only around 10 race courses in India. But there are some lotteries and casinos that you can use as well.

At the moment, retail sportsbooks are completely against the law in India. The only state in India that has any form of regulated sports betting is Sikkim. There is a lot of underground sports betting that happens in India, though. Most of the time, they bet on cricket matches. If you are looking for safer sports betting option in India, online offshore sportsbooks are what most of the tourists and locals use.

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Legal Sports Betting In KenyaThere are a few different options for legal sports betting for all Kenyan residents. Through the 1966 Betting, Lotteries, and Gaming Act, Kenyan players have access to three retail sportsbooks that are located inside the casinos spread thinly throughout the country. In 2011, online betting was also made legal but the sportsbooks are required to be linked to one of these casinos. There are currently a couple of online sportsbooks that are operated from within Kenya.

For all players in Kenya that want the best online betting experience, there are legal online books that are operated outside of Kenya. These sites have big bonuses available, a wide variety of deposit options, and instant payouts through cryptocurrency. These sites can be accessed from anywhere inside Kenya and used to bet on thousands of different odds and lines for football or any other sporting events.

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Legal Sports Betting In MexicoWhen it comes to legal Mexico sports betting, almost everything is allowed. Sports betting was firmly established in Mexico back in 2004. There are hardly any restrictions with Mexico sports betting. Thanks to that, Mexico has one of the fastest-growing sports betting markets in all of Latin America. You can easily go to any brick and motor sportsbook within Mexico and place a bet on your favorite teams from around the world. This includes any soccer teams that you want to bet on, or you can bet on American sports like football or college games as well.

The country also has established online sportsbooks as well. People visiting the country do not even have to go to a retail sportsbook. The only real restriction that Mexico sports betting has is that no one under the age of 18 can bet on sports. The online offshore sportsbooks we often recommend to you are extremely popular in Mexico as well.

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The Netherlands

NetherlandsSports betting in the Netherlands is legal in both retail as well as online and mobile forms. There is currently only one local casino operator that offers sports betting at this time. While land-based sports betting has been regulated for years, online and mobile betting only recently launched in 2019. The original petition for online sports betting was issued in 2016 and took three years for legislators to come to an agreement. The mobile sportsbook is provided by the land-based betting operator.

Residents and tourists are able to bet on sports without traveling to the land-based sportsbook, however, since international betting sites offer some of the best odds to all sports bettors in the Netherlands. Many online sportsbooks offer both English and Dutch language options as well for all players’ convenience

Netherlands Sports Betting

New Zealand

Legality Of Sports Betting In New ZealandNew Zealand sports betting is in an interesting spot. To put it into simple terms, sports betting in New Zealand is both regulated and legal. Retail sportsbooks are licensed and regulated by the New Zealand Gambling Commission and the NZ Department of Internal Affairs. New Zealand laws actually ban retail sportsbooks throughout most of the country, but six retail sportsbooks are allowed to operate.

Online sportsbooks are a different story. It is currently against the law to operate an online sportsbook based in New Zealand. But you are more than free to use an online sportsbook that is based outside of the country. Sites like SportsBetting and BetOnline are more than happy to take bets on rugby, soccer, and cricket. Sports betting in New Zealand is growing fast, so more retail sportsbooks are expected to come in the near future.

New Zealand Sports Betting


Legal Sports Betting In NigeriaAfrican sports betting has become much more prominent in the last decade as major African economies, including Nigeria, have seen explosive growth. Nigeria first launched sports betting in 2005 with the passage of the National Lottery Act. The Lottery Act legalizes sports betting across the country, with the only notable restriction being a minimum age of 18 years old. Nigerian sportsbooks accept wagers on almost any sport or league you can think of. Most Nigerian sportsbooks are hosted online, but there are a few retail locations open for those who prefer a more traditional sports betting environment. For Nigerian fans who don’t feel adequately covered by their domestic sportsbooks, online sportsbooks are also available for use to anyone in the country.

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Legal Sports Betting In PeruSports betting became legal in Peru over 25 years ago. Online sportsbooks in Peru have appeared in the market in the last 10 years. To put it simply, Peru sports betting is thriving. There are plenty of casinos in Peru along with pari-mutuel horse race track that opens four days a week. Top sports betting operators have been applying for a gaming license in Peru ever since 2008. So that means there are plenty of different online sportsbooks operating in Peru. Not just online sportsbooks based in Peru, but offshore sportsbooks as well.

Peru sports bettors have access to great online sportsbooks such as SportsBetting. That means that you are free to bet on sports no matter where you are in the country. Feel free to bet on soccer, baseball, American football, and many more sports while you are visiting Peru.

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Legal Sports Betting In PhilippinesPhilippine sports betting is extremely popular and very lucrative in the country. The Philippines has many sportsbooks all over the country. You can bet on most sporting events that happen in the world, but the majority of bets are placed on basketball and soccer. But Philippine sports betting is not so simple. If you are a foreigner visiting the Cagayan region, you are free to bet on sports. But locals from the area are not allowed to bet on sports. In other regions, everyone is free to bet on sports. The only restriction is that locals must go to a Philippine Amusement and Gambling Corporation (PAGCOR) to place their bets. Sports betting in their own houses is against the law.

Philippines Sports Betting


Legal Sports Betting In RussiaSports betting is legal and regulated in Russia. Interestingly enough, during the last days of the Soviet Union, sports betting was formally legalized in Russia. But sports betting laws have become pretty complicated in Russia since then. With the increase of taxation in Russia, retail sportsbooks in the country have begun to decline. Not only that, but the Russian media and telecommunications ministry has an ongoing blacklist against many popular sportsbook providers.

In 2008, Roskomnadzor was created to determine which online sportsbook is legal and which is not. William Hill, Betway, and Betfair are all popular online sportsbooks that are banned in Russia. But there are a few options available. SportsBetting and BetOnline are taking bets from Russian sports bettors. We highly recommend you do not use any sportsbooks that have been banned in Russia. Russia is known for severely punishing those who go against the country.

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South Africa

Legal Sports Betting In South AfricaIn case you were wondering, sports betting is indeed legal in South Africa. Sports gambling was formally established in the country back in 1994. Ever since then, retail sportsbooks and online sportsbooks have appeared all over South Africa. In South Africa, horse betting and sports betting are tied into each other. So, the laws created for sports betting will affect horse race betting as well.

There are an estimated 300 sportsbooks currently taking bets in South Africa right now, so there is a lot to choose from. Much like Canada or the United States, South Africa has nine different provinces in the country. Each province has its own regulatory board for sports betting and horse races. Each regulatory board can add regulations to South African sports betting as well.

South Africa Sports Betting

Puerto Rico

Legal Sports Betting In South AfricaSports betting in Puerto Rico was officially legalized in 2019 and didn’t officially launch until February 2022. The Puerto Rican gaming commission allowed for four different online sports betting licenses to three sports betting operators. BetMGM was the first sportsbook to launch on the island and they have a retail location at Casino Del Mar at La Concha Resort in San Juan. BetMGM also has an online platform in Puerto Rico but requires an in person registration process to get started.

Puerto Rico Sports Betting

United Kingdom

Legal Sports Betting In United KingdomAlthough the United States is now giving it a run for its money, the United Kingdom has long held the distinction of being the most developed sports betting market in the world. Major betting companies like William Hill are so well-entrenched that they are publicly traded on the UK stock market, and there are numerous sports betting parlors across the country eager to take consumer bets. Additionally, there are a wide variety of online sportsbooks available for UK residents. The UK sports betting market was so strong that major UK-based companies like William Hill were able to establish a foothold in the United States after the repeal of the Professional and Amateur Sports Protection Act (PASPA) in 2018.

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Countries With Legal Sports Betting FAQs

What Countries Have Sportsbooks With Live In-Game Betting?

It really depends on the country. There are some countries that do have live in-game betting, but there are others who do not. For example, even though Australia has one of the most developed sports betting industries in the entire world, they do not allow for in-play betting. But Nigeria, on the other hand, does allow for live betting to happen. The United States is the perfect example of this. Some states restrict what live-bets can be made in their state while other states allow for all in-play betting to happen. Make sure you check out the local laws of the country to discover if live-betting is an option to you and if it is not, online offshore sportsbooks will always have live-betting options. 

How Many Countries Have Legal Sports Betting?

We have a list of about 20 countries that offer legal sports betting options to its residents and tourists alike. That is a small sample size, however, as there are even more countries that offer sports betting. Sports betting is embraced all over the world in different countries and is regulated in different fashions. The best thing to do is to research a country before you attempt to bet on sports there to fully understand a countries sports betting laws. With the advent of legal online sportsbooks, even more, locations are able to offer sports betting access to locals and tourists.

Which Countries Bet The Most Money On Sports?

The countries that bet the most money on sports are countries that have the easiest access to sports betting. Countries like the US, UK or Australia are at the top of the list. From numbers before the recent worldwide sports betting expansion, The UK had over $13.9 billion wagered on sports in 2017 while Australians won over $1.06 billion in wagers during 2017 as well. As for the US, a few billion is bet on the NFL in New Jersey alone, showing just how much money some countries bet on sports.

Most Bet On Sporting Events Around The World?

If you are looking for the most bet on sporting event in the entire world, it would have to be the Super Bowl. American football is already one of the most bet on sports not only in the United States but around the world as well. That makes the Super Bowl an extremely popular event to bet on. Following that, is the World Cup. Soccer is a top sport in countries outside of the US, with teams from those countries represented in the tournament every four years. 

Do I Have To Exchange My Money To Bet At An International Sportsbook?

It depends. Let’s say that you are in Australia. You will mostly have to use the Australian dollar to bet on sports. But you are also allowed to use the American dollar and Euros to bet on sports as well. But if you are in Mexico, you can only use Pesos and American dollars, no Euros or British Pounds. You will have to know what is commonly accepted as currency in the country you are in to figure out what money you can or cannot use to bet on sports.

Which Online Sportsbook is Available In The Most Countries?

Online offshore sportsbooks such as BetOnline and SportsBetting has the widest availability in most countries. These sportsbooks have been not only accepting bets from US players for decades, but they have been accepting bets from people outside of the US as well. If you are looking for an online sportsbook that is available in most countries, the sites we recommend on is your best bet.

Do I Have To Pay Taxes On Sports Bets In My Country?

Once again, it depends. If you are in a country with legal sports betting, then you are likely going to have to pay taxes. But that is not always the case. Online sports betting in Canada is not taxed. That means more money for you to win. But in Australia, fixed odds sports betting has a 19.11% tax rate that you have to pay. If you are in a country with legal sports betting, make sure you look up the local laws to see how much in taxes you need to pay when you bet on sports.