Written by: Joseph Falchetti, Editor-in-Chief, Pro Sports Bettor and Casino Expert
Last updated:
7 minute read

South African Sports Betting

South South-African-Sports-Betting

South African Sports Betting
Status:Gray Area
B&M Availability:None
Online Availability:Gray Area
Minimum Age:18+

South African online sports betting is licensed and regulated in the Western Cape province, with Cape Town as its center. Traditionally, sports betting in South Africa has not been a large market, due to inconsistencies in the laws governing online sportsbooks. Online sportsbooks which accepted South Africans operate in a gray market. Lawmakers have tried in 2008, 2010, 2014, and 2016 to change the laws, but no national law exists to regulate South African sports betting.

After an announcement by the National Gambling Board in 2015, certain international online bookmakers operate in South Africa. This guide to South Africa’s sports betting industry discusses Talk about the best sportsbooks operating in South Africa. This article also provides full information on the legality of sports betting in South Africa, including what regulators say about online sportsbooks.

South African Sports Betting Legality

From 1994 to 2004, South Africa’s sports betting legality was clear and precise. Under the last years of Nelson Mandela’s administration and the first years of Thabo Mbeki’s administration, land-based and online sports betting was legal in South Africa. The National Gambling Act of 2004 repealed the 1996 law which legalized most forms of gambling in South Africa.

Since then, South African lawmakers have sought to repeal the 2004 amendment. Meanwhile, the National Gambling Board announced a policy in 2015 which contradicts the 2004 Gambling Amendment Act. While most forms of online gambling remain illegal, the National Gambling Board said that online sportsbooks and racebooks were legal. Local bookmaker operations are illegal, though reports suggest that hundreds of thousands of South Africans use illegal bookies to make bets on soccer and cricket each year.

Safety of Online Sports Betting in South Africa

fair sports bettingBecause many legitimate online sportsbooks do not accept South African real money players, bettors should beware when signing up with an offshore operator. Though the National Gambling Board has said sportsbooks can accept players, few laws exist to protect South Africans if a website does not pay their winnings. Online sports betting in South Africa is becoming safer, now that the Western Cape Gambling and Racing Board licenses and regulates a few legitimate online sportsbooks and racebooks.

A bettor’s safety and security are most important when betting online with a South African sportsbook. This site provides the resources you need to research the best online sportsbooks, while making a recommendation of a legitimate sportsbook which accepts South African play. Only register with the trusted and legit online sportsbooks which accept South African sports bettors and which are licensed by the Western Cape Gambling and Racing Board.

Catering to South African Sports Bettors

The best South Africa online sportsbooks which cater to bettors need to support deposits and withdrawals with the South African rand (ZAR). Catering to South African sports bettors requires payment methods which supports the South African rand, as well. Sites which support rand deposits and withdrawals sometimes support British pounds, US dollars, and bitcoins, but these are not always available as payment methods.

Sportsbooks who cater to bettors in South Africa need to support the English language. No known legitimate betting sites support all of South Africa’s 11 official languages, unfortunately. Those who prefer Afrikaans, Zulu, Swazi, Tsonga, Northern Sotho, Sotho, Ndebele, Tswana, Xhosa, and Venda may not be able to play at a trusted online sportsbook. It is best that you select an online sportsbook which supports English language transactions.

Online Sports Betting in South Africa

A breakdown of what it’s like to bet online sports in South Africa

Top South African Sports to Bet On

  • soccer betting
  • rugby betting
  • cricket betting


  • ZAR
  • USD
  • GBP
  • Bitcoin


  • English betting
  • South African Betting

These options may not be available at all sportsbooks, but represent a typical experiences.

Best South African Betting Sites

The best South African betting sites are going to be dedicated to the currencies and betting preferences of South Africans. Betway South Africa is the best online sportsbook for players wanting a safe and secure online sports betting option. Betway Casino and Betway Sportsbook are trusted, respectable online gambling sites. South African sports betting enthusiasts will be happy to know that Betway South Africa is designed for their needs. Betway supports the South African Rand and the English language.

Top Ranked South African Betting Site – Sportsbetting.ag

  • Accepts all major credit cards
  • Accepts Litecoin, Bitcoin other cryptos
  • Large assortment of sports betting markets
  • Competitive odds for betting on many sports
  • European football specific bonuses offered for the Cup

Why Is Sportsbook.ag The Best?

The SportsBetting.ag betting site offers most of the biggest sports, including Football, Baseball, Basketball, and Hockey (read review). They also have other international sports like soccer, rugby, and cricket. For the avid bettor, you can use their Live Betting to place bets in real-time. Pick from among dozens of different wagers you can place on a single match-up, along with great prop bets.

SportsBetting.ag offers new members plenty of bonuses, like their 50% up to $1,000 in Free Bets using the code “SB1000“. For those that use Bitcoin, can take advantage of their $20 up to $500 Bitcoin bonus using the promo code “BETCRYPTO“. Take advantage of their bonuses, live betting, and incredible sports betting odds with a sign-up bonus of 50% Up To $1,000. Check out Sportsbetting.ag to place bets and win!

Great For Betting On International Sports – Betonline Sportsbook

  • Accepts all major cryptocurrencies
  • Accepts all major credit cards (Visa, MasterCard)
  • Posts sports betting odds earlier than others
  • Large cash or crypto deposit bonus and endless reloads
  • Large bet on point spreads plus other popular sports bets

Why Bet At BetOnline?

BetOnline (read review) is one of the most versatile sites when it comes to deposit options. They accept a variety of cryptocurrencies, including Bitcoin, Bitcoin Cash, Ethereum, Litecoin, and Dash. These are by far the best choice for players as they have an extremely high deposit and withdrawal amount.

BetOnline offers loads of year-round promotions for major sports. Their standard deposit bonus is 50% Up To $1,000 for players on their first deposit (newly signed-up). This deposit comes with a 10x rollover. They also offer several promotions such as $25 live betting freeplay, $50 mobile betting freeplay, and a risk-free $25 play prop bet. Check out BetOnline to place bets and win!

Depositing and Withdrawing at South African Sportsbooks

South African bettors wanting to make deposits and withdrawals have access to Visa, MasterCard, i-Pay, EFT, and SID Instant EFT. To make a withdrawal from Betway, you’ll need to have an EFT payment method. Luckily, most of the major banks are supported by the best South African betting sites. Anyone with an account at one of the “Big Four” banks — Standard Bank, Nedbank, First National Bank (FNB), or ABSA Bank Limited — should have no problems making a deposit.

South African Deposit Options You Can Use

MasterCard: MasterCard is a world-famous credit card network. MasterCard deposits are supported at South African sportsbooks. Deposits are free and immediate, with minimum and maximum limits between R10 and R1,000,000.
Visa: Visa is the world’s largest credit card network. Visa deposits are accepted at legitimate online South African sportsbooks. Deposits are free and immediate, with minimum and maximum limits between R10 and R1,000,000.
i-Pay I-Pay is a new online payment method for buyers and merchants. I-Pay deposits are available via SMS, Email, QR Code, or via Push Payments. Deposits are free, but take 1 to 3 business days to appear. Deposit limits are between R10 and R1,000,000.
EFT (Wire Transfer): Electronic funds transfers are wire transfers supported by the Big Four banks of South Africa: ABSA, Standard Bank, FNB, and Nedbank. Deposits are free, but take 1 to 3 business days to complete. Deposit limits are between R50 and R1,000,000.
SID Instant EFT: SID Instant EFT supports online shoppers which make purchases at South African online merchants. SID Instant EFT is owned and operated by Setcom (Pty) Ltd. Deposits are free and immediate, with minimum and maximum limits between R10 and R1,000,000.

South African Withdrawal Options You Can Use

Standard Bank EFT: Standard Bank of South Africa Limited is the country’s largest lender by assets. It began as a subsidiary of the British overseas bank, Standard Bank, but came under the control of South African investors in 1987. Standard Bank EFT withdrawals take 1 to 3 days to process, but have an additional pending time of up to 96 hours. The minimum payment is R50, while the maximum cashout amount is R1,000,000.
First National Bank EFT: FNB is a division of First Rand Limited, a financial services conglomerate. FNB EFT withdrawals take 1 to 3 days to process, but have an additional pending time of up to 96 hours. The minimum payment is R50, while the maximum cashout amount is R1,000,000.
ABSA Bank EFT: ABSA is a wholly-owned subsidiary of Barclays Africa Group. ABSA EFT withdrawals take 1 to 3 days to process, but have an additional pending time of up to 96 hours. The minimum payment is R50, while the maximum cashout amount is R1,000,000.
Nedbank EFT: Since 2003, Nedbank Group has been a consolidated bank, which combined Nedcor, Cape of Good Hope Bank, Nedcor Investment Bank, and BoE. Nedbank is headquartered in the Johannesburg suburb of Sandton. Nedbank EFT withdrawals take 1 to 3 days to process, but have an additional pending time of up to 96 hours. The minimum payment is R50, while the maximum cashout amount is R1,000,000.

South African Sports Betting History

South Africa has had bans on gambling at least since 1673, though modern land-based gambling was banned under the Gambling Act of 1965. From the 1970s onward, as many as 2000 illegal casinos sprung up in the now-defunct Apartheid-era independent Bantustans: Venda, Bophuthatswana, Ciskei, and Transkei. The National Gambling Act of 1996 legalized all forms of gambling, but the National Gambling Act of 2004 repealed that law, including interactive gaming. The Gambling Act states that a person cannot “engage in or make available an interactive game except as authorized in terms of this Act or any other national law.” Under those terms, online casinos and poker sites are illegal. Online pari-mutuel wagers on horse races, sports betting, and Forex trading exist in a legal gray area.

The National Gambling Board, which regulates land-based gambling in South Africa, said that sports betting is legal, if done over the Internet or through a phone. Another statement suggested that operators have to be licensed as a “South African bookmaker”. It appears that online and mobile sports betting is legal according to the National Gambling Board, but few international operators work in the South African Internet gambling sector. Several times, South African lawmakers have tried to legalize and regulate online gambling, for the sake of tax revenues. Interactive Gaming Acts were sponsored in 2008, 2010, and 2014, but none of the three measures received passage. In September 2016, legislators introduced the National Gambling Amendment Bill of 2016, which would repeal the 2004 gaming act.

South Africa Sports Betting Resources

The National Gambling Board is the only regulator in South Africa. It continues to update the public on the progress of the Interactive Gaming Act 2016, which is being debated by the nation’s leaders. The NGB states, “The Bill aims to ensure that cooperative governance and oversight functions are improved and that regulatory certainty and negative effects of gambling are drastically reduced. It will focus on enhancing existing gambling activities and no new gambling activities will be introduced. The Bill will ensure that vulnerable groups such as minors and problem gamblers are protected and will be able to access assistance from organisations such as the National Gambling Regulator.”

National Gambling BoardThe NGB regulates the land-based gaming on horseracing, bingo, and slot machines at 40 casinos nationwide.
Western Cape Gambling and Racing BoardThe Western Cape Gambling and Racing Board oversees land-based gambling, online and mobile gambling, and social gaming in the West Cape.

About the Author

Joseph Falchetti

Joseph Falchetti

Editor-in-Chief, Pro Sports Bettor and Casino Expert

Joe is the author of the majority of sports betting pages on SBS and he serves as a gambling consultant to our content team. He's been mentioned on Forbes.com as a gaming analyst, and his articles have been linked by larger publications, such as the New York Times.

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