Some people refer to Pennsylvania as the “Keystone State”. It is a keystone when it comes to legal sports betting in the US, that’s for sure.
Pennsylvania got up and running quickly after PASPA was overturned by the US Supreme Court in May 2018. Retail sportsbooks opened before the end of the year and online and mobile sports betting started about a year after the landmark decision. Since then, Pennsylvania has been a rich and robust sports betting market for several different operators.
It is a big state with a lot of pro teams in Pittsburgh and Philadelphia and it was important for Pennsylvania to move quickly on its own sports betting legislation so as not to lose money going over the border into New Jersey. Three sportsbooks launched before the end of the 2018 calendar year and several more got going by the end of 2019.
A variety of different operators are available to Pennsylvania sports bettors and those from neighboring states like Ohio and New York. The Empire State allows retail betting, but no mobile or online betting as of yet. The answer to how to bet on sports in Ohio is to leave the state. That makes PA a popular destination for wagering for residents of both states.
It was originally thought that Pennsylvania’s high tax and licensing rates would slow growth in the state, but operators were so eager to expand that it wound up not being an issue. It helped to be one of the first states to take legal wagers. Most states that have introduced or passed sports betting legislation since Pennsylvania went live have had friendlier financial requirements for the operators, but the impressive betting handles and the statewide sports betting revenue figures show that moving quickly was the right call for both sides.
With a lot of options and a lot of considerations for prospective sports bettors, let’s talk about how to bet on sports in Pennsylvania.
There are a lot of options in Pennsylvania. We believe that some are better than others, but that choice is yours. We’re going to highlight the ones that we trust the most as the top US sportsbooks, but you may think differently and that’s perfectly fine. We just want to be a trusted resource for you here at ATS. We don’t want to tell you what to do. We want to help.
We’ll talk about the top Pennsylvania sportsbooks in alphabetical order and list the others that aren’t at the top of our list, but might be for you.
BetMGM Sportsbook was a little bit later to the party in PA, but is now a big part of the fabric of gaming in the Keystone State. The King of Sportsbooks was approved for a sports wagering license in October 2020 and officially launched online and mobile betting in December 2020.
As a global leader in gaming with the well-known M life Rewards program, BetMGM’s presence can be felt in all forms of gaming, including online casinos in Pennsylvania. The sportsbook app is among the best with extremely fair odds and prices on futures.
You can get up to a $500 Welcome Bonus from BetMGM Pennsylvania. Be on the lookout for a new Bet $1, Win $100 promotion from MGM when you do sign up.
BetRivers Sportsbook is very popular in Pennsylvania. The Pittsburgh and Philadelphia casinos by the same name are very recognizable for bettors from around the state. These are really good products through Kambi and Rush Street Interactive and BetRivers does get rave reviews for its live betting interface.
There is almost sort of a sense of local pride, too, particularly in Pittsburgh where the Rivers Casino sits right next to Heinz Field, making it one of the most trafficked retail sportsbooks in the state.
You can get a 100% Deposit Match Bonus up to $250 from BetRivers Pennsylvania.
DraftKings Sportsbook has a license in Pennsylvania through The Meadows Racetrack and Casino in Washington. DraftKings was another one the opted to wait it out for a little bit in PA, but launched on October 30, 2019 to accept sports wagers.
Everybody knows the DraftKings name from the DFS operator that transitioned into a sportsbook and was among the sportsbooks that led the charge for PASPA to be overturned. DraftKings is a great sportsbook for futures and props bettors and also one that has a lot of special offers and promotions regularly.
You can get up to a $1,000 Welcome Bonus from DraftKings Pennsylvania.
FanDuel Sportsbook has the biggest market share in Pennsylvania. Its partnership through Valley Forge Casino may not have been the biggest attention grabber at the time, but many were already familiar with FanDuel from DFS and also from its enormous presence in New Jersey.
FanDuel has a clean, sleek, professional look and a lot of people love what their app has to offer. The ability to parlay prop bets has been a real big hit and they will only continue to grow.
You can get up to a $500 Risk-Free Bet when you sign up at FanDuel Pennsylvania.
Unibet has had success in New Jersey and lots of success overseas as a popular sports betting app. Unibet has a license through the Mohegan Sun Pocono in Pennsylvania. While it has a limited US profile, the apps that have come over from Europe have been in the business a long time and are very well-versed in how to treat customers.
We’ll see if this is a name that starts to get more of a market share with expansion and more of a footing in the US, but those that use Unibet have had really positive reviews of how smoothly the app and the website run.
You can get up to a $500 Risk-Free Bet when you sign up at Unibet Pennsylvania.
Pennsylvania is a Remote Registration state, which means that you can sign up from anywhere. You just need to be physically located in Pennsylvania to make a deposit, place a bet, or process a withdrawal.
Retail sports betting is still offered at every casino and sportsbook in the state, but betting online or with a mobile app is the preferred and most convenient way to get your bets in. Geolocation technology will ensure that you are in the state before giving you access to your real money balance.
Sportsbooks at places like Rivers and Parx and Meadows allow for that sports betting experience, but the fact is that most people just like watching from home nowadays and the state-of-the-art technology and software employed by the sportsbooks allows you to do exactly that. That includes live betting, which updates in real-time and gives users the chance to bet on the games they are watching.
You have no shortage of options. We’ll talk in more detail about them later, but FanDuel, William Hill, DraftKings, BetMGM, Unibet, BetRivers, and Barstool are among the most popular for Pennsylvanians.
Now you know how it works. Let’s talk about how to sign up for sports betting in Pennsylvania.
Step 1: Pick the Right Sportsbook for You
The beauty of Remote Registration and online and mobile betting is that you are not limited to the closest sportsbooks to your home or workplace. You are able to bet anywhere. It doesn’t matter if you don’t live near Rivers Casino in Pittsburgh. You can use BetRivers. It doesn’t matter if you are nowhere near Valley Forge Casino in King of Prussia where the FanDuel Sportsbook is located.
It is irrelevant if Philadelphia is a 6.5-hour drive because you live in Erie and want to bet with Parx. It doesn’t matter if you want to use TwinSpires (formerly BetAmerica) and can’t get to Presque Isle Downs. Nowhere near Meadows Casino in Washington? That’s fine. Use DraftKings from home.
That is the absolute beauty of a wide-open, mobile and online-approved state for sports betting. You can use any of the apps that are available.
It is important to find a sportsbook that makes you feel comfortable. It can be an overwhelming process for those that are just starting out. Find a sportsbook that you like. Decide what matters the most to you. Each sportsbook has a different sign-up bonus. They all look different. Some offer more contests and weekly promotions, but don’t have the best odds on spreads and totals. Others offer fair odds, but have limited options for prop betting.
It all depends on what you are looking for in a sports betting app. If you don’t know, our sportsbook reviews will be a huge help.
Step 2: Sign Up at the Sportsbook of Your Choice
Once you’ve decided on a sportsbook, you’ll have to sign up. Basic personal information is required to verify your eligibility for an account, like a social security number to make sure you are a real person of legal gambling age.
The sign-up process is extremely easy and pain-free. If you go to sign up through us at ATS.io, you will be directed to the registration page or at least the page to pick which state you are in so that you can get registered for an account. Be sure that you either go through ATS.io to activate our referral code to get your exclusive bonus or get to the place to enter one of our promo codes.
State-of-the-art cybersecurity and encryption technology will protect your personal information, so you don’t have to be concerned about your sensitive data when you sign up. Sportsbooks keep it well-protected. It would be very bad if a company had a breach, especially in such a competitive climate, so they take it all very seriously.
Step 3: Make a Deposit and Get Your Welcome Bonus
Don’t leave your sign-up bonus on the table! Double check and make sure, whether in the registration process or the process of making a deposit, that you are getting that sign-up bonus. This is one of the biggest perks of signing up online for mobile sports betting. If you go to the retail sportsbook and hand them $500 and ask for your deposit bonus, you aren’t going to get the answer that you want.
Imagine going to a sportsbook in Las Vegas on a trip to Sin City and asking the teller for a sign-up bonus. It won’t happen. In fact, you might even get laughed at. But that’s not the case with online and mobile sports betting.
A place like DraftKings Sportsbook offers a Welcome Bonus up to $1,000 split between a Risk-Free Bet and a 20% Deposit Match Bonus.
A place like BetRivers offers a 100% Deposit Match Bonus.
FanDuel and Unibet also offer a Risk-Free Bet, which means they’ll refund your first bet amount up to a certain amount if it loses.
The sign-up bonus is important.
As far as making a deposit, sportsbooks take a variety of different deposit methods. You can use credit or debit card, an electronic bank transfer like an ACH payment or an e-check. Some states and sportsbooks even allow third-party payment processor deposits like PayPal. Others will offer Prepaid Plus Cards so that you don’t have to use a credit card or share personal banking information.
Making a deposit is just as easy as registering, except you might have to look up your credit card number or bank account information. Either way, it is very simple.
Step 4: Start Betting and Determine Your Goals
This part is important. Before you even place your wagers, decide what you want to achieve with your sports betting deposit. Are you just looking to have some fun and treat this as a hobby? Are you looking to supplement your income? Are you hoping to one day get to a point to make it a career?
Your mindset changes based on what you want to do and what you want to achieve. No matter what you decide, do not bet above your means. Do not leave yourself with a decision to pay a bill or buy a meal versus placing a bet or locking in that parlay.
Bet within your means and bet responsibly. Bet intelligently. Have multiple sportsbooks to shop for the best odds. Take advantage of the sign-up bonuses. Have fun with it.
Pennsylvania is a state with a lot of choices for prospective bettors. You really can’t go wrong with any of the top Pennsylvania sportsbooks. Many also have online casino capabilities as well to enhance your gambling experience.
The best part is that you don’t have to leave the couch or your office or even do more than lift a finger to place a wager. The convenience of betting from home, betting at work, or betting on the go is second to none and that is especially important in such a large state like Pennsylvania.
Online and mobile betting allow you to bet with any of the sportsbooks in the state and that makes all the difference.
There really are a ton of options, so don’t hesitate to reach out here at ATS.io if you have any questions and be sure to check out our sportsbook reviews to find out more.
The state of Pennsylvania has a lot of apps for mobile sports betting. Of course, none of them have the pull and the reach of FanDuel Sportsbook, but options are always good for the consumer. DraftKings is the most recent on the block launching in November 2019.
Play SugarHouse has merged into BetRivers, so there were five sports betting apps in Pennsylvania for a time, but Rivers has decided to make its branding the same across all of its platforms, so those that have SugarHouse accounts will be converted over to BetRivers. Same operator, same company, just with consistent branding across the state.
Fox Bet is another one. Formerly known as BetStars, Fox Bet also operates in Pennsylvania via its license with Mount Airy Casino. Online poker is now available in the state of Pennsylvania via the Stars family of apps, so keep an eye out for that as well.
Finally, the Parx app based out of the Parx Casino near Philadelphia is available for state residents as well. We should see more, as BetAmerica has a license through Presque Isle, Caesars has a foothold in Pennsylvania via its Harrah’s property in Philadelphia, and Unibet has a license through Mohegan Sun Pocono.
In terms of sports betting and gambling as a whole in Pennsylvania, there is no shortage of options and more are on the way.
It only makes sense to have a lot of apps and opportunities. Pennsylvania has two huge cities with Pittsburgh and Philadelphia and also borders some big cities in New York and Ohio with places like Cleveland, Buffalo, and New York City, and even the state’s proximity to states like Maryland, New Jersey, West Virginia, and Virginia create a lot of potential revenue.
Therefore, there are choices. There are numerous operators. There are going to be even more when all is said and done, even with what was thought to be a prohibitive licensing fee and tax rate. As it turns out, the desire of Pennsylvanians to bet was more than enough for the operators to take a chance. Their gamble has certainly paid off.
Pennsylvania became the seventh state to take legal sports wagers, but was the fourth state to offer mobile sports betting, behind only Nevada, New Jersey, and West Virginia. Of course, West Virginia’s first crack at it went up in flames, but they gave it the old college try before most of the other states. Pennsylvania has 12 retail sportsbooks and a growing number of mobile sportsbooks.
All of these apps require the user to be physically within the borders of Pennsylvania, though all of these apps (except for Parx) are also legal in nearby New Jersey.
With more to come in the near future, we’ll focus on the main ones for now:
Pennsylvania may not have been the first state to legalize sports betting, but it was the first Commonwealth. There was a unique sense of urgency in Pennsylvania to get sports betting done and get it done quickly. The two biggest cities in the state, Pittsburgh and Philadelphia, are in very close proximity to other states that were moving quickly to legalize sports betting.
That is especially true of Philadelphia with its location near the New Jersey border. Philadelphia is the most populous city in Pennsylvania and has more than five times the people of Pittsburgh.
Most importantly for the fine people of PA, online sports betting went live in June 2019 with multiple options for those that wanted the convenience of betting at home or while on the go. Live sports betting started in Pennsylvania in January 2019 and it only took about six months to go the mobile sports betting apps going.
Those wondering how to bet on sports in Ohio surely paid close attention to what was happening in Pennsylvania. The Buckeye State is moving at a snail’s pace. Similarly, those wondering about sports betting in West Virginia, which is legal in the state’s five brick-and-mortar casinos, are now hoping that their home state will take a cue from its neighbor. At the very least, West Virginia residents can download the apps and then place bets inside of Pennsylvania’s borders.
Because legal sports betting in New Jersey took off with such fervor, it put pressure on Pennsylvania lawmakers to really get something going. Competition is always beneficial to the process as well. The physical structures in Pennsylvania with sports betting are the Hollywood Casino, SugarHouse, Rivers, Parx, South Philadelphia Turf Club, Harrah’s Philadelphia, and Valley Forge Casino. In the not so distant future, Mohegan Sun Pocono, Mount Airy, and Presque Isle Downs will add to the mix..
Presque Isle Downs will be a big one for Ohio residents, as Erie is about 90 minutes northeast of Cleveland. It will have a similar impact for residents of Buffalo. New York has legal sports betting in its upstate casinos, but none in Western New York and online sports betting in New York has not been implemented yet. That means the New York State Thruway from Buffalo to Erie will be awful busy unless things change in NY.
Those sure are a lot of operators with gaming centers that take sports bets. Pennsylvania, though, has some serious territory within its borders and the major cities are pretty spread out.
Fortunately, mobile sports betting is available in Pennsylvania and that makes it easy for everybody to get access. Not just Pennsylvanians, but also those residents of Ohio, New York, West Virginia, Virginia, and Maryland that are looking to get involved. That’s the tough part about those states. As mentioned, New York has it, but not inside the border near New York City. How to bet on sports in New York is being lucky enough to live close to one of the casinos or close enough to bet in Pennsylvania or New Jersey.
Virginia and Maryland are making strides towards legal sports betting, but they aren’t quite there yet. West Virginia has brick-and-mortar sportsbooks, but the process of getting online has been a challenge for accepting mobile sports wagers.
Four options are available within the state of Pennsylvania to bet from a mobile device. There are no deposit fees and lots of terrific bonuses for these apps. Play SugarHouse is the official app for SugarHouse Casino in Philadelphia. Not only can you bet on sports in the Play SugarHouse app, but there is also an online casino with more than 20 slot machines. Video poker and blackjack are also available to sweeten the deal, but this is the ideal app for mobile sports betting.
SugarHouse Casino itself has a poker room, over 1,500 slots machines, and a few pits of table games. As a well-known name in the Commonwealth, this is a great app for those that want to get their feet wet with sports betting or those seasoned bettors looking for convenience and reliability.
Fanduel Sportsbook is the operator of the Valley Forge Casino Resort and has brought its online betting capabilities from New Jersey to Pennsylvania. There have been some challenges with the other online apps and their synergies with Apple devices. That hasn’t been a problem for Fanduel, as all of the bugs were already worked out in New Jersey. It is the only app that works seamlessly with iOS devices, though there are workarounds for the other apps that require a little more tech savvy.
In fact, the app has simply been altered to include the Pennsylvania books. That is a huge advantage to those that use the Fanduel app because it would be extremely easy to cross the border into New Jersey and shop the odds at places like Meadowlands. The location settings in the app will automatically detect whether the sportsbooks in Pennsylvania or the ones in New Jersey are accessible. The best part? Fanduel Sportsbook app users can bet from the same bankroll depending on which state they are in!
Because Fanduel has been in the business so long with DFS and now sports betting, it is one of the most advanced as far as player perks and bonus offers, like refunds for NBA Overtime Heartbreak and NFL Halftime Insurance. There is also a loyalty program and a players club. No matter which apps you use, be sure to get those players club comps.
Rush Street Interactive is leading the mobile sports betting charge in New York and has had great success in New Jersey and now Pennsylvania. The BetRivers App is the official app of Rivers Sportsbook in Pittsburgh. Like the Fanduel app, integration allows for one bankroll to be used at multiple sportsbooks and also with the additional online games available in the app.
Last, but certainly not least, is the Parx Sportsbook app for the Philadelphia-based casino. This is the largest casino in the state and the app lives up to that billing. It uses the same technology as the DraftKings app in New Jersey, so the interface is easy to use and is backed by the most recognizable name in Pennsylvania gaming.
Terrific bonus offers and different perks are available through each of the apps. These won’t be to only apps in the state. It’s only a matter of time until Caesars Sportsbook PA gets up and running via the Harrah’s Casino in Chester on the outskirts of the Philly Metro Area. DraftKings is likely to start its own operations in the future and it wouldn’t be a surprise to see William Hill US get involved either.
Want one more perk? Of course you do! You can bet from a mobile device, but you can also bet right from your desktop computer or laptop. It’s a similar setup to an offshore sportsbook, but in a safe, fully-regulated environment.
Pennsylvania is a perfect sport for betting. All of the major pro leagues have teams in the state and there are multiple NHL, NFL, and MLB teams in the Keystone State. Furthermore, its proximity to competing states expedited the timeline and there are still opportunities to get bets from outside the state because you do not have to be a legal resident of PA to bet in the state.
The tax rate in Pennsylvania is also astronomically high at 36% for operators. That means that they need your money and that means a lot of player-friendly bonus options and ways to get you involved.
So, how do I bet on sports in Pennsylvania? Register with your social security number to set up accounts with the various apps and then fund them via any of the acceptable deposit methods. It’s that simple!