Welcome to your ultimate guide for North Carolina sports betting! If you’re a sports fan in the Tar Heel State eager to get in on the action, then you’ve come to the right place. In this comprehensive guide, we will walk you through the legal landscape of sports betting in North Carolina, outlining the regulations and restrictions that exist. Additionally, we’ll explore the best North Carolina sportsbooks and provide all the information you need to get started today!
Is Sports Betting Legal in North Carolina?
In July 2019, North Carolina Governor Roy Cooper signed Senate Bill 154 into law, legalizing retail sports betting in the Tar Heel State. After a lengthy delay, the state accepted its first legal sports wager on March 18, 2021.
There are currently three retail sportsbooks licensed and operating in the state of North Carolina: Harrah’s Cherokee Casino Resort (in Cherokee), Harrah’s Cherokee Valley River Casino (in Murphy), and Catawba Two Kings Casino (in Kings Mountain).
Anyone who is at least 21 years of age can visit any of the state’s three tribal casinos and place wagers on both college and professional sporting events. Meanwhile, despite a few hurdles along the way, it appears North Carolina is set to legalize online and mobile sports betting in the very near future.
When Will Mobile Sports Betting Launch in North Carolina?
North Carolina’s latest attempt to legalize online sports betting across the state appears to be heading in the right direction. House Bill 347 would authorize the North Carolina Lottery Commission to allow up to 12 mobile sportsbooks to go live in the Tar Heel State, and the bill’s effective date is January 8, 2024. As a result, there is widespread optimism that online sports betting will launch in early 2024 if all goes according to plan.
It had previously seemed as though Senate Bill 688 would set up mobile sports betting in North Carolina, but the state’s House of Representatives rejected the bill by a narrow margin in July 2022. Nevertheless, it is now expected that North Carolina soon will be added to the list of U.S. states offering digital sports betting to its residents.
How Can I Bet On Sports in North Carolina?
While you’re waiting for North Carolina to launch its first mobile sports betting platform, here are a few options currently available to sports betting enthusiasts in the state:
As previously mentioned, there are three retail sportsbooks currently licensed and operating in the Tar Heel State. If you are 21 years or older, you may visit Harrah’s Cherokee Casino Resort, Harrah’s Cherokee Valley River Casino, or Catawba Two Kings Casino and place sports wagers on all your favorite players, teams, and leagues.
This is an excellent option for bettors in Asheville and Charlotte, who are only a quick trip away from at least one of the tribal casinos. However, these three retail locations are all located in the western half of North Carolina and would require an extended drive for residents living in Raleigh, Durham, or other eastern North Carolina cities.
Visit Neighboring States
Another option for North Carolina residents is to visit neighboring states that have already legalized online and retail sports betting within their borders. Tennessee, Virginia, and West Virginia are all reasonably close and offer a great selection of mobile sportsbooks, including DraftKings, FanDuel, and many other industry leaders.
You can register for an account online in North Carolina, and you’ll just need to cross over into your preferred state when you’d like to place a bet. In addition, there are plenty of in-person betting options available in Virginia and West Virginia in cities such as Bristol, New Cumberland, and Charles Town.
Daily Fantasy Sports
Daily fantasy sports (DFS) is completely legal in the state of North Carolina and presents a unique alternative to sports fans. You’ll get to enter exciting contests involving players from both college and professional sports while competing for a chance to win your share of $1 million+ prize pools. DraftKings, FanDuel, OwnersBox, and ParlayPlay are all major players in the DFS arena and are currently available within the state.
For North Carolina sports bettors who are seeking alternative options, offshore sportsbooks may potentially provide a solution. Offshore sportsbooks operate online and cater to customers from various regions, including North Carolina, but they may not adhere to the same regulations and consumer protections that legal U.S. sportsbooks are required to follow.
As a result, there are certain risks associated with offshore sportsbooks. It is crucial to do thorough research and only choose reputable platforms with a proven track record, positive customer reviews, and strong security measures.
What Are the Best North Carolina Sportsbooks & Betting Sites?
It is expected that many of the industry giants will seek partnerships and apply for licensing in the Tar Heel State. Here are a few of the most likely candidates to launch their platform in North Carolina within the next few years:
With a strong presence in many U.S. states, BetMGM Sportsbook has established itself as a reputable and trustworthy platform. It offers a wide array of sports betting markets, including major professional leagues like the NFL, NBA, MLB, and NHL, as well as many different college sports. BetMGM provides competitive odds, a seamless mobile app, and enticing promotions to enhance the betting experience.
Backed by the renowned Caesars Entertainment brand, Caesars Sportsbook is a popular choice for sports bettors all over the country. The platform is well known for its great selection of daily odds boosts and top-tier customer loyalty program. Caesars Sportsbook also provides competitive odds, an intuitive user interface, and enticing bonuses and promotions for both new and existing users.
DraftKings is a household name in the world of daily fantasy sports, and its sportsbook platform has already made its way to the top of the market. With a sleek and user-friendly interface, DraftKings Sportsbook offers an extensive selection of sports betting markets, including major and niche sports. It provides a seamless and engaging experience with features like live betting, in-depth statistics, and innovative promotions.
Another likely option for North Carolina bettors is FanDuel Sportsbook, which has arguably the best mobile app and customer service in the industry. In addition, FanDuel provides first-bet insurance to all first-time users and provides frequent bonus opportunities to existing users to keep things exciting! Bettors will also enjoy an extensive selection of alternative lines and totals as well as a wide range of prop markets if they choose to join the FanDuel community.
Where Can I Bet on Sports in North Carolina?
As briefly mentioned above, North Carolina sports betting enthusiasts will always have the option to visit neighboring states to place wagers and join in on all the fun and excitement offered in the world of sports betting. While you wait for North Carolina digital sports betting to become available, take a look at the nearby states where sports betting has already launched, each of which is listed and explained below.
Mobile and online betting launched in Tennessee in November 2020, and there are nearly a dozen sportsbooks (e.g., BetMGM, Caesars, and DraftKings) currently licensed and available to anyone physically located within the state’s borders.
Fortunately, Tennessee is a remote registration state, meaning you can sign up for an account and get everything set up in North Carolina. You’ll just need to cross over into the Volunteer State to actually place your bets. This presents an appealing option to residents of Asheville and other cities in the western half of the state.
Virginia sports betting was legalized in March 2020 and went live in January 2021. The state offers 14 mobile sportsbooks as well as one retail sportsbook (Hard Rock Sportsbook in Bristol) to anyone who is 21 years or older.
College and professional sporting events are fair game, with the only exception being Virginia schools (e.g., University of Virginia and VCU) are off limits. Virginia is another remote registration state, and sports fans residing in Durham, Raleigh, and Greensboro are all just a short drive away from sports betting freedom.
In March 2018, West Virginia became one of the first U.S. states to legalize sports betting. The state’s first in-person wager was placed in September 2018, and online bets were first accepted in December of the same year. There are plenty of high-quality digital sportsbooks operating in West Virginia, including FanDuel, BetRivers, and PointsBet. In addition, there are five retail sportsbooks available across the state.
Although North Carolina doesn’t border West Virginia, it is reasonably close in proximity. North Carolina residents who live in Winston-Salem or other towns in the northwestern part of North Carolina may choose to take a road trip and gain access to a wide range of online betting options in the Mountaineer State.
How To Sign Up & Start Betting in North Carolina
With mobile sports betting on its way to North Carolina, it’s important to familiarize yourself with the process you’ll use to sign up and start placing bets on all your favorite sports and teams. Here are the steps to follow:
- Choose Your Sportsbook: Pick a sportsbook that is licensed in the state of North Carolina and aligns with your personal preferences and sports betting needs.
- Register for an Account: Begin the registration process. Enter all necessary personal information, choose a username and password, and agree to the site’s Terms & Conditions.
- Verify Your Information: Complete the account verification process by following the specific instructions provided by your betting site. You may need to provide a picture of your driver’s license, ID card, or passport to confirm your identity and age.
- Make a Deposit: Use any of the payment options accepted by your sportsbook (e.g., debit/credit cards, online bank transfers, and digital wallets) to make your first deposit on the platform.
- Claim Your Welcome: Use a promo code (if necessary) to claim your welcome offer. You will typically receive bonus bets, first-bet insurance, or a deposit match.
- Start Placing Bets: Begin placing wagers on any of the betting markets offered by your sportsbook. Good luck!
Popular North Carolina Sports Teams
North Carolina is home to many popular sports teams that have garnered significant support and fandom for their success at the collegiate or professional level. A few of the state’s biggest sports franchises, organizations, and universities are discussed below.
The Carolina Panthers are the state’s NFL franchise, and the team is based in Charlotte. Founded in 1995, the Panthers have captured the hearts of North Carolina football fans. They play their home games at the Bank of America Stadium and have enjoyed both regular-season success and Super Bowl appearances. Despite their recent struggles, the organization has plenty of passionate fans who proudly wear the Panther blue and black, cheering on their favorite players each and every season.
Although North Carolina is prominently a college basketball state, the NBA’s Charlotte Hornets have a big following across the Tar Heel State. Originally established in 1988, the team gained prominence during the ’90s with star players like Larry Johnson, Alonzo Mourning, and Muggsy Bogues. After a hiatus, the Hornets returned to Charlotte in 2004. The team currently plays its home games at the Spectrum Center and is led by rising star LaMelo Ball.
The Carolina Hurricanes are a professional ice hockey team competing in the National Hockey League (NHL). Originally known as the New England Whalers, the team relocated to Raleigh, North Carolina, in 1997 and became the Hurricanes.
The Hurricanes have had many successful seasons, including winning the Stanley Cup in 2006, and have cultivated a passionate hockey community in North Carolina. After a post-championship slump of 10+ years, the Carolina Hurricanes have now won three straight division titles dating back to the 2020-2021 season, and they appear to be heading in the right direction.
Duke Blue Devils
The Duke Blue Devils are a prominent collegiate athletic program representing Duke University in Durham, North Carolina. The Blue Devils are especially well known for their men’s basketball team, which has a rich history of success under the guidance of legendary coach Mike Krzyzewski. The team has won five NCAA championships and consistently ranks among the top programs in the country.
North Carolina Tar Heels
The North Carolina Tar Heels, another esteemed collegiate athletic program, represent the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. The Tar Heels have excelled in various sports, but their men’s basketball program stands out, boasting six national championships and 21 Final Four appearances. The team’s intense rivalry with Duke has captivated fans across the nation and is considered one of the fiercest in college basketball.
Strategies & Tips for North Carolina Sports Bettors
If you’re looking for a way to help take your sports betting experience to the next level, we’ve got you covered. Here are a few useful strategies and tips to help increase your chances of success going forward:
- Do Your Research & Stay Informed: Conduct thorough research and stay informed about the sports and events you’re betting on. Stay updated on news, team performance, player injuries, and any other relevant factors that may influence the outcome of a game. The more knowledge you have, the better-equipped you’ll be to make informed betting decisions.
- Track Your Bets & Learn From Your Mistakes: Keeping a record of your bets allows you to track your performance, analyze your betting patterns, and identify areas for improvement. Record details such as the type of bet, stake, odds, and outcomes. By reviewing your betting history, you can identify trends, evaluate which strategies are working for you, and learn from any mistakes you’ve made.
- Keep Your Emotions in Check: Avoid making emotional bets or chasing your losses. You’re inevitably going to go on losing streaks throughout your sports betting journey, but you’ll need to remain disciplined and continue making well-researched, strategic decisions to bounce back.
- Take Advantages of Bonuses & Promotions: Claim all promotional deals and bonus opportunities offered by your sportsbook. This includes bonus bets, first-bet insurance, deposit matches, parlay insurance, and any other exciting deals available to new or existing users.
- Shop for the Best Odds: Different sportsbooks may offer slightly different odds for the same event. By comparing odds across multiple platforms, you can ensure you’re getting the best possible value for your bets. Even small differences in odds can significantly impact your overall returns.
North Carolina Sports Betting FAQ
Yes, retail sports betting is legal in North Carolina for anyone who is 21 years or older. Meanwhile, mobile sports betting is not currently available, but it is likely to become available in early 2024.
The legal betting age in the state of North Carolina is 21 years old.
You can bet on sports in North Carolina by heading to any of the three retail sportsbooks currently operating or by visiting neighboring states where online betting is already legal.
Yes, retail sports betting is currently legal in North Carolina. Customers who are 21 years or older can visit Harrah’s Cherokee Casino Resort, Harrah’s Cherokee Valley River Casino, or Catawba Two Kings Casino to place bets today.
No digital sportsbooks are currently available in the Tar Heel State. However, DraftKings, BetMGM, Caesars, and FanDuel Sportsbook are all high-quality platforms and likely candidates to launch in the near future.