International Sports Betting

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

*Disclaimer: We are not legal experts and this guide shouldn’t be considered as legal advice. It’s your responsibility to understand the laws in your jurisdiction and the potential risks before placing a bet. Further research is recommended.

International Sports Betting Guide

We believe that sports betting (and bookmaking) should be a legal activity for all adults to enjoy if they choose to do so.

You earned your money. You should be able to decide what to do with it. However, not all jurisdictions and governments believe this.

Therefore, we created this international sports betting guide where you can find all about different laws, regulations, and information surrounding the global betting scene.

Read on to find the best worldwide betting sites and expert insights on specific countries.

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International Betting Scene Explained

International sports betting reality

Sports betting is sometimes demonized as a form of gambling that is morally incorrect compared to casino gambling, poker, or lotteries. This is nonsense. There’s nothing immoral about betting on a sporting event.

Primarily, sports betting is a form of entertainment.

No one would bat an eye if a bunch of guys spent several hundred dollars on buying tickets to a football game, but if they got together for beers and pizza and bet a few hundred dollars on the game – the same societies would judge it entirely differently.

So, while we believe sports betting should be entirely legal around the world – that’s far from the reality. In fact, depending on what country or state you’re living in, the legal landscape and acceptance of sports betting can vary wildly.

If you are looking for insights on international bets for specific countries, pick one from the following list:

Top International Sports Betting Sites

The following are the best international sportsbooks. These are safe sites where you can wager on sports from almost anywhere around the world.

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You Can Also Check Our Full Review Of The Best Online Sportsbooks

Foreign Sports Betting Sites Profiles

Have you ever asked yourself where sports betting is legal in the world?

While we’re a US-focused site, we pride ourselves on covering sports betting for several regions, including overseas. Below we cover each jurisdiction or country extensively.

We go over legality, international betting options, taxes on winnings, and the ins and outs of each market. You’ll also be able to access our country-specific lists, where you can access the best sports betting sites around the world.

Canada Sports Betting

Canada sports betting

Sports betting in Canada has grown to become just as popular as it is in the United States.

Canadian betting does focus on different sports, though, including Ice Hockey, Football, Basketball, and Soccer, with some mentions of Rugby as well.

Take a look at our expert guide to Canadian sports betting and learn whether it is legal to bet on sports in Canada and the current laws.

Learn which are the best Canadian betting sites you can safely wager on your favorite sports.

Sign up and bet at a trusted international sports betting site.

Try our current top Canadian betting site:

United Kingdom Sports Betting

UK sports betting

Sports betting in the United Kingdom is completely legalized and regulated, with hundreds of local bookies where you can place your wagers.

They also license online offshore bookmakers that offer the same or better services than those bookies.

Look at our UK sports betting directory to learn about the laws and resources. You will also get our top-ranked UK betting sites where any punter will find their favorite sports matches.

betway sportsbook

Sign up and bet at a trusted overseas sports betting site.

Try our current top UK sports betting site: Betway

They also have an Android and iOS app to bet from your smartphone!

South Africa Sports Betting

South African Sports Betting

South Africa is a small international betting market compared to others, but they are huge fans of sports betting.

Our guide will show you the current laws and legalities of betting on sports in South Africa.

For those that are unsure of where to place your bets, use our recommended South African betting site, which has been vetted for safety, accuracy, and much more.

New Zealand Sports Betting

New Zealand sports betting

New Zealand is all about Kiwi sports, with Rugby, Cricket, and Soccer being their top sports to bet on.

Make sure about the legalities of betting on sports in New Zealand with our in-depth analysis of their laws and regulations.

Stay safe and start betting and winning at the top New Zealand betting site we recommend.

India Sports Betting

India sports betting

India is one of the largest countries in the world, and their main sport to bet on is Cricket, which brings in billions of pounds each year in wagers.

Keep yourself safe by checking out the laws and regulations that India has in place when it comes to sports betting.

For those looking for a safe online betting site, look at our top recommended sportsbooks in the guide.

Kenya Sports Betting

Kenya Sports Betting

Kenya is in its infancy when it comes to online sports betting. However, due to the clear gambling laws and regulations, one can enjoy placing sports bets on a variety of different sports.

The most popular wagers in Kenya are placed on both European as well as American Football.

If you are looking into Kenya sports betting, our in-depth guide will answer all the questions you may have about safe and profitable betting in Kenya.

Australia Sports Betting

Australian Sports Betting

Australians, just like their neighbors Kiwis, enjoy greatly placing sports bets online.

European football, cricket, and rugby betting are the most popular forms of wagering online. There are a lot of options, so you should be able to find a safe, secure bookmaker with fast withdrawals and large welcome bonuses.

In case you are not familiar with the laws and regulations of the Australian gambling industry, our comprehensive guide will provide you with answers to your questions.

Philippines Sports Betting

Philippines Sports Betting

The Philippines’ sports betting industry is popular and widespread.

Betting is quite popular among Filipinos, and it ranges from Boxing, European football, and most popular American sports.

If you are not familiar with the laws and regulations of the Philippine gambling industry, our comprehensive guide will provide you with the most answers to your questions plus recommendations for the best Philippine online sports betting sites.

Russia Sports Betting

Russian sports betting

Online sports betting in Russia is possible but a bit complicated due to the government’s power to blacklist and restrict some online sportsbooks from accepting bettors.

We have listed the best and safest online betting sites you should use when placing sports wagers in Russia, plus provide pertinent information about the laws and regulations in Russian online gambling.

Nigeria Sports Betting

Nigeria sports betting

Though Nigerian online sports betting is unregulated, the industry is safe and welcomes online sports bettors.

The most popular sports to bet online are European football and rugby.

If you are looking to partake in Nigerian online sports betting, our guide will provide you with all the information you may need in order to start placing profitable bets in Nigeria.

Costa Rica Sports Betting

costa rica sports betting

Costa Rica’s sports betting industry is large and growing. It is illegal to bet on sports in Costa Rica, but that applies only to land-based sports betting.

If you are looking for online sports betting, Costa Rica represents a perfect option to do so.

In our guide, you will find the best Costa Rican online sports betting sites, plus other information that will help you place sports bets online.

Brazil Sports Betting

Brazilian Sports Betting

Sports betting in Brazil is quite popular, though the Brazilian government bans most forms of wagering on sports.

Brazilian online sports betting is unregulated, but online sportsbooks are legal.

If you are looking to understand the Brazilian regulations and find the best betting sites, our guide can help you with all of this.

Colombia Sports Betting

Colombia sports betting

Colombia legalized sports betting in 2016, along with a variety of other forms of online gambling. Online sports betting sites are safe and easy to access.

In our guide, you will find the best sports betting sites plus all the laws and resources to place sports bets in Colombia.

Mexico Sports Betting

Mexican sports betting

Mexico’s sports betting industry is widespread and popular. Mexican sports betting is legal, with a variety of licensed land-based sportsbooks in the country.

Online gambling is a growing industry in the country, with the Interior Ministry licensing more international operators all the time.

Here you will find all the necessary information about online sports betting in Mexico.

Peru Sports Betting

Peru Sports Betting

In Peru, sports betting is a popular pastime. Sports bettors have had access to land-based sportsbooks for generations.

Online gambling is legal in Peru. Late in the 20th Century, lawmakers sought to ban online gambling, but eventually, public consensus grew behind legalization and regulation.

Check out our guide about the best Peruvian online sportsbooks and laws and regulations for sports betting in Peru.

Argentina Sports Betting

Argentina Sports Betting

Argentina’s sports betting history goes back at least 140 years when the Argentine Hippodrome first opened.

Nowadays, Argentina’s online sports betting legality is handled by a patchwork of state and provincial governments. The online sports betting market remains unregulated, but online sports betting is legal.

Find out how you can place sports bets online in Argentina by reading our in-depth guide.

International Sports Betting Sites – Legal and Regulated Markets

Regulated International betting markets

Many countries in Europe, most notably the United Kingdom, have a fully regulated and legalized online betting industry.

In countries with regulated gambling, citizens can wager on sports freely on the web without fear of breaking the law.

These countries also allow bookmakers to set up shop inside their jurisdictions, providing the government with tax revenue.

Countries like the UK, which liberalized online sports betting early in its existence, have benefited from becoming early adopters.

Benefits Of Regulated International Betting Markets

The most important benefit is the security and legal recourse that citizens in these countries receive if something goes awry.

Bettors can use the legal system to recover funds if they feel they have been wronged by an online bookmaker or have not been paid their withdrawal requests.

Payment processing is also much easier in these jurisdictions.

Since credit card companies, banks, e-wallets, and other payment processors have a legal climate to operate under, there are many more options for players in regulated markets.

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Bet safely at one of the best international sports betting sites: BetUS

International Sports Betting Sites – Unregulated Markets

Unregulated International betting markets

Unregulated betting markets is a term we will define as a country where companies host online sports betting sites, and where betting online for citizens is either not legal (a gray area) or criminalized in some form.

However, if a market is unregulated, it doesn’t mean it’s not viable for sports betting.

A perfect example of this would be the United States, where online sports betting isn’t regulated, but there are still hundreds of online sportsbooks that service those residing in the US.

Issues With Unregulated Betting Markets

Those betting in unregulated markets will have little recourse if they have a disagreement with a sportsbook operator. If a sportsbook chooses not to pay, there’s almost nothing that can be done.

Of course, if a sportsbook continually rips off players, it will be listed on rogue lists all over the internet, including our list of scam sportsbooks.

This can make a poor operator go out of business and should help keep most bettors away from these bad guys.

Another issue in unregulated jurisdictions is with payment processors. It varies depending on the region, but as a general rule, deposit and withdrawal options will be much scarcer in unregulated markets.

If government laws are strictly enforced against online sports betting, there’s little reason banks or payment processors would risk operating in unregulated or illegal regions for sports betting.

Questions About International Sportsbook Markets

How Do I Tell If Online Sports Betting Is Legal In My State, Country, Or Jurisdiction?

The best course of action is to do your research online. Placing bets and accepting wagers can be a serious crime in some countries, but this is quite rare in Western nations. For the most part, placing a bet online and not acting as a bookmaker won’t be a problem in most areas. In general, betting online will provide more anonymity and is much safer than betting with local bookies.

How Does Law Enforcement Works In Unregulated Betting Markets?

Even if online sports betting is expressly illegal in certain countries or states – these laws are almost never enforced.
Sites may be blocked via a firewall, but for the most part, governments aren’t tracking down online gamblers because it’s not worth their time or energy.

They may look to seize domain names of sportsbook sites or charge operators criminally if they can do so, but going after individual bettors is almost never a priority.

Remember, just because online sports betting isn’t regulated in your region, it doesn’t mean that placing a bet online is a crime. It may well be, but once again, there hasn’t been a country in the world that has decided to prosecute individual online sports bettors.

Are Regulated Sportsbooks Safer Than Non-Regulated Sportsbooks?

For the most part, yes. Regulated sportsbooks will have stricter regulation and oversight compared to those in unregulated betting markets. Still, there are excellent options for those in unregulated markets. 90 percent of sports bets placed in the United States are done unregulated or “illegally.”

There are plenty of sports bettors in the country getting paid when they win, whether that be with their corner bookie or betting on offshore sportsbooks.

Why Are My Cashier Options Different Depending On The Sportsbook I Choose?

Cashier options will differ by the sportsbook, along with deposit and payout speeds. International gambling sites will have different methods due to the laws in their areas or the areas where their customers are located.
Most regulated sportsbooks are dominated by e-wallets, such as Neteller, Skrill, and in some regions, even PayPal. These companies are the top gambling processors on the internet.

Credit, debit cards, and bank wires are all accepted at regulated sites as well, and they are the primary option on unregulated sites. Bitcoin deposits and other crypto-currencies have become the best option at overseas sportsbooks due to not being connected to the banking system and because of their low transactional cost and high speed compared to other methods.

Will The Regulatory Agencies Help Me If There Is A Dispute With A Sportsbook?

It depends on the region. In countries with regulated sports betting, there is a better chance of a gaming commission stepping in and mediating a dispute and forcing the bookmaker to pay if there is wrongdoing.
With offshore betting sites, for the most part, you’re on your own. If the situation warrants, we at SBS or another top sportsbook review site will lower their rating or issue a warning. Ultimately, however, it’s up to the sportsbook to decide to pay. By the way, here’s what to do if a sportsbook is not paying you.

Can I Bet On International Sports Betting Sites If I’m In The USA?

You can bet at many international sports betting sites from the USA. A good start is our list of top US-friendly sportsbooks. The general rule for US bettors is that you can wager at the site if you can access it. You will know right away when you call up the site. Most sites will display a notice on your screen if they do not allow betting from your area. If you access a site and still have doubts, go to the sportsbook’s terms and conditions section. There you should find a list of prohibited states or countries. Or you can ask the site through their support staff.

Check Our Complete Online Sports Betting Guide

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 as a gaming analyst, and his articles have been linked by larger publications, such as the New York Times.

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