Online Sports Betting California: A Guide to Popular Gambling Sites

Best known for Hollywood and a golden coastline, California is home to numerous bricks-and-mortar casinos that give Nevada a run for its money. The only state to elect the Terminator as governor offers residents in-person gambling establishments with sportsbooks, poker and card games. But what if you want to bet on sports from your phone?

There are no concrete laws or even a betting bill set forth by legislators that explain the ins and outs of legal sports betting. The state isn’t quite as forward in the sports betting industry, and finding a sportsbook in California that caters to your exact betting needs can be tricky. However, whether you live in Los Angeles, San Francisco or Sacramento, there are online betting sites available to you.

Best Betting Sites for California

  1. Bovada

    When it comes to sportsbooks geared to American bettors, Bovada offers everything you need to bet on the NFL, NBA, MLB and college sports. There’s also lines on hockey, UFC, e-sports and politics. From live betting to exclusive bonuses on certain deposit options, Bovada is the ultimate sports betting site for those looking for quick withdrawals, special promotions and different language options (English and Spanish).

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  2. BetOnline

    Known for their killer Welcome Bonus and refer-a-friend program, BetOnline.ag is focused on the bettor. Choose from player props to $125 worth of risk-free bets when you use this sportsbook for your wagering needs. They also boast early lines and quick payouts, making them one of the most respected in the industry.

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  3. GT Bets

    GTBets is the sportsbook of choice for football fans due to their NFL and college football betting lines and odds. Their easy-to-use interface makes betting a breeze. Plus, their ample sign-up bonus will match your first deposit 50% up to $500. Whether you're wagering on the NBA, baseball or horse racing, this is the online betting site you need.

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*Terms and Conditions apply to all bonus offers on this website. Visit operator for details.

Betting on Sports Online

When it comes to wagering on everyday matchups or big sporting events, you have a myriad of betting options to choose from. Sports wagering sites provide you with the chance to make picks on moneylines, point spreads, totals, futures, props, parlays and teasers.

Live betting is another great option offered by California sportsbooks. This gives you the chance to bet on sports as they’re happening. For example, if the Dodgers are playing the Giants and it’s the top of the fifth, you can bet on whether the next pitch thrown will be a strike, ball, hit or walk.

Odds and Sports Offered

The majority of betting sites offer action on everything from the NFL to college sports (NCAA football, NCAA basketball). You’ll also find lines for NHL, MLB, NBA, golf, soccer, combat sports (boxing, UFC), and motorsports (Formula 1, NASCAR). Men’s and women’s tennis is likewise available to bet on, along with esports, entertainment and politics.

Moreover, California online betting sites usually offer their own racebook allowing you to wager on every major horse race from the Kentucky Derby to the Breeders’ Cup. Plus, most sportsbooks have their own casino featuring poker, live dealers and table games like blackjack and roulette, and virtual slot machines.

Deposit Options

Funding your sports betting account can be done with Bitcoin, e-wallets (PayPal, Skrill, Neteller) and credit cards (Visa, MasterCard, American Express, Discover). In terms of withdrawing your money, some betting sites allow you to use the same method you used for deposit to take out your winnings.

Bonuses and Free Bets

Betting websites like to thank their California customers with prizes for being loyal bettors. Welcome bonuses are a staple in the industry, with some sites matching your initial deposit up to 100 percent. This means that if you were to add $100 worth of Bitcoin to your account, you’d get an additional $100 to bet with. Free bets may also be offered, and sport-specific bonuses pop up all the time. For instance, a site may give you a $25 bonus if you bet on basketball.

All sportsbooks have different criteria for their rewards, so make sure to read the terms and conditions before accepting a bonus.

Customer Service

The way a betting site responds to its clientele is important. Any problems that arise with your account should be taken care of swiftly so you can continue to bet. Most websites have a customer service department that operates 24-7. You should be able to contact them via email, phone and chat.

How to Sign up to Bet on Sports

First you need to select one of the sportsbooks we list above. Each is trustworthy, safe and we have vetted each one to ensure you have an A+ betting experience. Once you’ve decided which one to use, you’ll need to provide your email address and deposit option to create your account. After that, you’re ready to start betting.

Visiting a California Land-Based Casino vs Betting Sites

As a resident of California, as long as you are 21 or older, you have the option to gamble in person at a bricks-and-mortar casino, or you can use a sports betting site. The state of California is home to tribal casinos that are located on reservations and run by the native American tribe in charge of that acreage. There are also card rooms that provide poker and other games but don’t have the same amenities (spas, concerts, five-star dining, private poker rooms) as their native-operated counterparts.

Some California sports gambling establishments are tied to daily fantasy companies. Fantasy sports are big business gambling corporations. But, that doesn’t mean you have to visit a California casino to play fantasy sports.

In 1984, the California State Lottery was introduced to provide additional funding to schools across the state. On top of interstate options such as the Mega Millions and the Power Ball, California residents can also play intrastate draw games and scratch cards. Although sweepstakes do not provide the same results as betting on sports, they are an option for bettors looking for a quick draw game.

If you choose to bet on sports online, you’re basically visiting Las Vegas without leaving your house. You don’t have to travel or get dressed up to have the same odds and betting lines you’d find at a land-based sportsbook in California.

Whatever your choice may be, Odds Shark has you covered with in-depth betting tutorials to ensure you have everything you need to make smart picks on everything from the Super Bowl to the Heisman Trophy futures.