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Betting Sites in Canada

Canadian Betting Sites

If you are looking for some honest, expert tips and advice on betting in Canada then you have come to the right place. We have a vast wealth of experience in the Canadian betting industry and have spent years accumulating experience and so we are now equipped with all the information you need before you start betting on sports. In this article, we will deliver all the key information and answer all the questions you are hoping to ask about Canadian betting sites.

Introduction to Canadian Betting Sites

Betting sites in Canada have been operating for years with a wide range of big global names being prominent in the country. For the record, the offshore setup of these bookmakers make it legal for Canadians, but we will go on to talk about the legal framework shortly. Some of the biggest names in betting now operate for Canadians in this way, with brands such as Betway, LeoVegas, Unibet, William Hill and many more available to sports betting fans.

The range of markets available are as extensive as anywhere else in the world with a huge range of sports being covered including the likes of baseball, basketball, ice hockey, football, soccer, tennis, and golf to name just a few. As well as delivering a huge range of sports, there is a comprehensive range of markets available to players in Canada with the likes of outright winner, competition winner, handicap betting, winning margin, first scorer, correct score, and countless others being prominent amongst the top bookies.

Many sportsbooks in Canada will offer services such as live and in-play betting, allowing you to place your bets during matches while others will also offer live streaming of events so you can watch all the action unfold before your eyes. Many of the leading bookmakers will offer tips and stats pages where you can evaluate all the key information before you place your bets, and others even provide podcasts discussing all the likely outcomes of a particular event.

Betting on the move has become increasingly popular. All decent bookmakers in Canada will offer a mobile service either via a dedicated mobile app or a website that has been tailored and optimized for betting use on your mobile phone and tablet devices.

Payment options on Canadian sites are also versatile and many of the popular banking methods are available to punters in Canada, which we will discuss in depth later on.

The Legality of Canadian Online Betting

There are often queries regarding the legality of betting online in Canada due to the confusing nature of the government's legal stance. However, you can rest assured that betting online in Canada is completely legal and you don’t have to worry about any repercussions for playing online. Nearly 20 million Canadians are actively betting online which is impressive given the population sits at under 40 million people.

Regulation on Canadian betting is different state-by-state so you should always double check your particular states stance, but while regulations may be strong, sports betting in Canada is entirely legal and Canadians from all across the country can enjoy a flutter without any worries about future consequences. What’s more, gambling taxes are not applied on winnings within the country so you can enjoy every cent of any win that you pick up.

Back in 1892, all forms of betting were illegal within Canada, but in the 1960s the laws were somewhat relaxed and allowed provincial governments to deliver a betting service to their population. This allowed them to provide services such as parlay betting on sports, among a host of other markets. By 1985, Canadian residents were legally allowed to use slot machines.

The Canadian Criminal Code prohibits Canadian civilians from marketing or offering betting services to fellow Canadians, and so a grey area was created when overseas betting sites and bookmakers began operating in Canadian territories. Since then, the Canadian government has taken a very relaxed approach to overseas betting sites providing services to Canadians, and a huge range of sportsbooks now operate in the territory.

Payment Methods on Canadian Websites

If you have ever visited a land-based casino, you will have paid in cash. When betting online at a sportsbook, cash is not an option, but luckily there are a huge range of flexible solutions for how you can deposit and withdraw your funds with bookmakers. As time continues to go by, leading betting sites will seek out and adapt new currencies that are either popular with their customer base or ones that they think will benefit both their customers and themselves.

It will come as no surprise that the most common method of payment on betting sites is via debit and credit cards through the likes of: 

Many bettors like the familiarity of being able to use the payment method they use in everyday life for their betting banking, and the result is a lot of players looking to use debit and credit cards. Any Canadian betting site of any credibility will accept this traditional way of making deposits and withdrawals.

Online transfers are also incredibly popular with players. This is mainly due to the increased transparency and safety associated with online transfers and, of course, the familiarity will play a large part in customers' trust of the service.

There are a wide range of online transfer providers in Canada from companies such as:

There will be alternative providers too, but these will be the most common names. Online transfers are easy to use, cost efficient, highly safe and the money lands in your account almost immediately.

Another alternative method of making a payment to your online betting site is via the use of a prepaid card. Prepaid cards are supplied by companies such as Paysafecard which allow you to deposit funds into your account quickly and hassle-free. The rise in popularity in cryptocurrencies has seen bookmakers look for solutions as to how they can accept cryptocurrencies from players. Some of the leading betting sites will accept cryptocurrencies such as Ethereum and Bitcoin with many more expected to follow in the future.

As we have previously mentioned, Canadian betting laws are more complicated than your average countries, so there are some payment methods that are not available. For example, PayPal is hugely popular with European bettors and is popular with Canadians for everyday living, however, PayPal does not like the grey areas that surround the legalities around Canadian betting and have therefore made it unavailable. Other popular e-Wallet services such as Neteller and Skrill have both followed PayPal’s lead and are also not available to players in Canada for the time being.

Sports Knowledge and Betting

Many people who are looking to get into sports betting are put off by what they deem as a lack of knowledge of any particular sport. We’ve heard it countless times, ‘I don’t know enough about ice-hockey to place any bets on it’. Well, we are here to dispel the myth that you need to be a sports buff to be a successful bettor.

We all have that one friend who has a ridiculous knowledge of sports. He or she knows exactly when the Bills last won at the Packers, who won the Hart Memorial Trophy in 1988 or how many goals Giovinco scored when he won the MLS Golden Boot. But how many of these people are winning big bets regularly?

Of course, having in-depth knowledge of a sport, or sport in general can’t necessarily be a bad thing when it comes to betting. Afterall, they say knowledge is power. However, you don’t have to be following a sport for years or know every fact and statistic about a team to have the correct level of knowledge.

Here is a very important fact to remember:

In the modern world of increased technology and focus on data, there are a wide range of providers who offer different services to sports teams. Some will look to track on-field data such as most distance covered, most touchdowns or goals scored among many others, while other data capturers look to provide snapshots of recent form, results and other statistics. Through shiny colour coded diagrams, you can analyse a team’s recent home form in a matter of seconds. You can then look at their opponents corresponding away form in a matter of seconds and a picture begins to appear around the likelihood of a particular result. Of course, you can go much further into the detail than this. You are able to see a team’s injury list, when they last won without a specific player in their team, when they last won at a particular stadium and what the head-to-head records are like.

What makes all this even better is that most betting sites will provide you with this information themselves. Betting sites are continually looking to gain an advantage over their competitors and as soon as one of them introduced results data into their betting site, the flock followed and now you can gain all the information and data you need for your strategy in the same place you stake your bets. Convenient right?

As we have previously touched on, many sportsbooks will also provide podcasts where experts discuss their favourite bets for an upcoming event and look further into the intricate details about a specific sporting match up. Even if you are not a big sports fan, absorbing all this information in a short period in the lead up to a game can provide you with as much chance of winning as a long-standing fan. The information is there and available to everyone, it’s how you choose to use that information which is key to the success of your betting strategy.

Canadian Betting Site Bonuses

The Canadian betting industry, like everywhere else, is extremely competitive. Sportsbooks are all fighting to try and win or retain your custom. This is good news to the bettor as it means that you are constantly benefitting from the best value odds and promotions. Sportsbooks are constantly looking for innovative and great value bonuses to provide players with to win them over. These come in all shapes and sizes, so let’s take a look at what you can expect in terms of bonuses from Canadian betting sites.

In general, you can split betting bonuses into two categories: 

  1. Welcome bonuses for new customers and to incentivize getting new players.
  2. Loyalty bonuses to try and keep existing players coming back for more.

So, what types of promotions will the bookmakers offer? Well, the most common promotion for new customers is a deposit match. Essentially you deposit a specific amount and the bookmaker will match that deposit, essentially doubling the amount of money you can bet with. As well as deposit matches, sportsbooks will provide free bets in the form of ‘Bet C$10 on the Stanley Cup and get a free C$10 bet on the Stanley Cup’.

Other popular promotions include a reload or deposit bonus, where a bookmaker will offer you regular deposit match bonuses every week or month as long as you keep depositing a specific amount. Loyalty points programmes are also popular with Canadian betting sites. Essentially, the more money you wager in a period, the higher level of the loyalty programme you sit at. At each tier you are given different benefits that range from enhanced odds, prizes, free bets or even cash back.

Bonuses on Canadian betting sites are ever evolving as sportsbooks look for innovative methods for keeping hold of more customers, so keep your eyes peeled for all the latest offerings.

Betting Site Safety

The most important aspect of betting online is ensuring you are betting safely and securely with a well-respected betting site. The last thing anyone wants is for their hard earned cash to be stolen away from them by an illegitimate website and sadly the online betting industry attracts many wannabe fraudsters. Luckily, it is quite easy to spot these companies from a mile off, and as long as you are careful and look out for some key warning signs, you should manage to steer well clear of any potential dangers.

The first and most important factor when it comes to betting safety is ensuring that your chosen sportsbook is licensed and regulated by a reputable gambling authority. Any site that is not licensed or regulated should be avoided at all costs. Due to the legal reasons already mentioned, the only source of Canadian licenses is from the Kahnawake Gaming Commission. Nearly all betting sites operating in Canada will boast a license from a reputable overseas authority such as the Gibraltar Gambling Commission or the Malta Gaming Authority, among others.

Before signing-up or depositing funds into a betting site account ensure that the bookmaker you are choosing has an established history and a proven track record of success. Don’t take any uneducated risks with your hard earned cash with new and upcoming sportsbooks. Instead, let others take that risk, and play the safe game by only using trusted operators that you can find here, which have all been recommended by our own team of experts.

To stay safe in the Canadian online betting world be sure to follow our advice, do your own research if needs be, and be alert to the key points mentioned above and you will stay trouble free.

Customer Service at Betting Sites

Different bookmakers in Canada will provide a range of different platforms you can access their customer service through. As we have touched on several times, bookmakers are extremely keen to keep hold of their current customers so they will usually do all they can to keep their customers happy, and these teams are usually helpful in resolving any disputes or queries.

Here are the common customer contact channels available to you:

If it is available, the quickest and most effective way of getting through to Canadian betting sites is via the live chat feature. Live chat response times will vary but usually your query will be responded to in a matter of minutes. For more serious issues or when you feel you need to speak to someone in person, all respectable bookmakers will have a customer phone line you can use to reach the customer service team. Depending on how busy they are, you are likely to be on hold for a short period but longer than a wait for a live chat agent, but most of your calls will be answered in under 20 minutes.

Some people would rather have their conversations recorded in writing and so they will choose to email their concerns. Again, all good bookmakers will offer an email customer service line although this is likely to be much slower and can take days before you receive a response. That said, having the whole conversation in writing can be worth the wait. Lastly, many bookmakers are now reachable via Social Media platforms, mainly Facebook or Twitter. These are used best for questions around offers, promotions, or asking for “request a bet” odds. It is likely that if your response is quite complicated then they will ask for you to call to get all the details.

Encountering a problem

We obviously don’t wish this on any of you, but there are occasions when players on Canadian betting sites encounter an issue such as a stuck withdrawal, an offer that wasn’t processed or a bet not paying out. Our recommendation when encountering an issue is first to check the website’s Frequently Asked Questions section. Most betting sites will have these helpful sections that explain answers to commonly asked questions, and the likelihood is, someone has experienced the same issue that you are suffering and there may well be an answer. 

If the FAQs section can’t provide you with a viable answer, it would then be time to reach out to the customer service team via the methods discussed in the previous section. For quick and efficient answers, we would always recommend live chat or phone. If you carefully explain your current predicament, the customer service team will work with you to find a solution and resolve the problem. In our experience the vast majority of customer service staff on quality betting sites are extremely helpful and you will be back betting in no time at all.

Conclusion

Despite the confusing legal framework, Canadian betting sites operate in much the same fashion as betting sites from across the globe. There is a versatile range of payment methods for you to choose from and a wide selection of great value promotions for you to take advantage of as well. Always pay close attention to your safety and ensure that the company you are betting with is legitimate and possesses the correct licenses. If you encounter any issues be sure to reach out to the customer service teams via the methods previously mentioned, and your problem should be fixed in no time at all. Last but not least, remember that you don’t need to be a sporting expert to be a betting expert. Good luck and enjoy the great experiences that Canadian betting sites provide.

Betting Sites in Canada - FAQ

Is betting online legal in Canada?

The Canadian betting legal framework is complicated and the government has never taken an official stance. However, rest assured betting online is legal in Canada and no one has ever been convicted for making use of betting sites in Canada.

How do I know if a Canadian betting site is safe?

Always check that a betting site possesses a valid gambling license from a reputable commission and uses respected software firms. If in any doubt, read the section in this article for more information covering all the things to keep an eye out for.

How do I qualify for a bonus on Canadian betting sites?

New and existing customers will qualify for Canadian betting promotions. They will require you to meet certain criteria such as signing up or depositing a certain amount of cash. Always check the terms and conditions of a promotion and ensure that you are happy with them.