Interest in Bitcoin is growing in online gambling due to its entirely digital structure. Compared to other currencies bitcoin offers additional security and flexibility, which is appealing to players and casinos alike.
These benefits have seen bitcoin gambling and bitcoin casinos online rise in popularity in recent times. For newcomers to this cryptocurrency, the following guide explains everything you need to know about gambling online safely with bitcoin, and recommends the best bitcoin casinos to play with online.
Before ditching standard money and swapping to cryptocurrency when betting, it helps if players understand how bitcoin works, and how to use bitcoin online.
Bitcoin (shortened 'BTC') is a type of cryptocurrency or digital money that is decentralized from any government or bank. Instead, Bitcoin operates on a peer-to-peer network where users can send and accept bitcoin 'computer files' in their digital wallets. The benefits of this system mean bitcoin requires fewer intermediaries and provides greater transaction transparency and security.
These benefits are especially appealing to casino players and sportsbook bettors. As a result, gambling online with bitcoin is growing in popularity. Special bitcoin casinos now operate online, with traditional gambling sites like NetBet now accepting cryptocurrency too.
For bettors ready to take their first steps into this cryptocurrency, here is how to use bitcoin online.
Popular Bitcoin eWallet options are listed further below, but many online casinos and sportsbooks accept NETELLER and CashBet.
There are several ways to get bitcoin; users can buy bitcoins or accept it as payment in exchange for goods or services. 'Mining' bitcoin is also an option, but this is a time-consuming and complicated task.
Bitcoin transactions are usually fast, so users will not wait long. The details of the transaction are listed on a blockchain technology network, which offers complete transaction transparency.
Check the payment information page of a casino site or sportsbook to see if they accept bitcoin deposits. Alternatively, there are online directories that list which websites and businesses accept bitcoin.
In short, yes, bitcoin is real money and can be used to purchase anything from coffee at your local café to chartered jets. The main difference is that it's an entirely virtual currency. Think of bitcoin like you would with foreign cash. You 'buy' or exchange money when you travel, or occasionally when making purchases online. Bitcoin operates in a similar way, with users able to buy, pay and convert this cryptocurrency into other forms of cash.
Like 'normal' money, bitcoin is made up of smaller currency units. Unlike your 100-penny dollar though, bitcoin takes this to the next level. A single bitcoin is made up of 100 million 'satoshi' units. Or rather, 1 satoshi = 0.00000001 BTC. Collect enough satoshi, and they create larger currency units within a bitcoin.
Generally, gambling operators process bitcoin in two ways. Bitcoin-exclusive casinos and sportsbooks will only accept bitcoin currency in exchange for chips or bets. Bitcoin-compatible casinos and sportsbooks alternatively, will exchange bitcoin deposits for a standard currency, i.e. US dollars.
The benefits and disadvantages of bitcoin casinos are discussed further in this guide, but the steps bettors must take to gamble online using bitcoin hardly change:
Bitcoin casinos generally offer fewer games, but there are no transaction fees.
These eWallets operate on the cloud or with software and offer various features. Do some research first to find the one that fits your needs.
The quickest way to do this is visit an online bitcoin exchange, and buy amounts using your country's standard currency.
Decide how much you want to wager, and then deposit it into your account with the online casino or sportsbook. Depending on their system, you will need to convert this to chips or another currency.
Thanks to the digital qualities of cryptocurrency and the security it offers online transactions, online casinos and sportsbooks can process bitcoin payments and deposits rapidly, and with ease.
Bitcoin operates on an exchange rate, just like any every other currency worldwide. The value of bitcoin to other currencies fluctuates daily, depending on inflation, the amount of bitcoin available, and other cryptocurrency trends.
If a bettor wants to transfer bitcoin into real money, there are several options available. These can vary depending on the user's location, but the section on withdrawing bitcoin wins below explains several methods for exchanging cryptocurrency into real money.
The newness of cryptocurrency and its digital nature causes many bettors to question the security of bitcoin gambling. The answer to this depends on the bettor's personal preferences and how well they protect their personal information online.
Conventional banking systems protect their clients' money using advanced security protocols. For bettors, this gives them the peace of mind that their funds are protected without much involvement on their part. Not only that, but they can also rely on insurance systems and middlemen like PayPal for additional protection.
On the downside, the details required to complete transactions with traditional banking methods mean there are more opportunities for these personal details to be hacked and used to steal funds.
With BTC gambling, money transfers are anonymous, peer-to-peer transactions. Once a transaction is complete, a security certificate between the two parties is created and approved by virtual software. The anonymity makes it impossible to steal user data, but the usual issues over online security come into play here.
Essentially, the argument boils down to whether a bettor prefers the familiarity of traditional payment methods, or values keeping their identity online private, no matter what.
Many countries have yet to update their gambling legislation for bitcoin casinos. In these circumstances, we recommend bettors follow the online gambling legislation their country of residence provides.
Always check that the site you want to play on is licensed in your jurisdiction, regardless of whether it is a bitcoin casino or a multi-currency gambling site. This can be tricky to find, as the digital nature of bitcoin means these casinos and sportsbooks can operate anywhere in the world. Most bitcoin casinos will feature this information in their footers, though.
For bettors that live in countries with restrictions on gambling, the anonymity bitcoin offers can be an appealing prospect. Read the terms and conditions of an online casino though before depositing funds. It may not offer its services in your country, which means you may risk losing money.
Before any bettor can start gambling with bitcoin, they must have a bitcoin wallet. Bitcoins can resemble computer files, so this virtual wallet stores all these cryptocurrency files in a safe, secure place before bettors are ready to make any transactions.
When bitcoin wallets store information, it will either be through the cloud, or through software. One benefit of bitcoin wallets is that they are compatible with multiple operating systems, such as Apple's iOS and Android. To keep security tight though, many bitcoin wallets restrict users from accessing their account through more than one method. Here are the four types of bitcoin wallets:
This method stores bitcoin on a separate physical piece of tech, such as a hard drive plugged into a laptop through a USB port. This is one of the most secure bitcoin wallets.
With web wallets, users can access their bitcoin on any browser or mobile device. This option offers great flexibility to bettors.
Software is required for this bitcoin wallet, which is installed on a desktop computer. However, it gives the user complete control over their wallet, including the address details for sending and receiving bitcoins.
This wallet behaves similarly to a desktop wallet but is a paid app on your mobile and can offer great ease-of-use.
Bitcoin wallets secure information with 'keys'; these are essentially long passwords of numbers and letters created using encryption algorithms. To maintain the user's anonymity, bitcoin wallets use virtual addresses. If an online casino or bettor wants to deposit or withdraw money from their bitcoin wallet, they will direct the funds to the address.
If a bitcoin wallet is based in the United States, it will be fully regulated. That means if it detects funds are being sent to gambling sites, your account may be closed.
For bettors undecided over which wallet to use, the options below have been tried and tested on bitcoin gambling sites, and recommended by experienced BTC players:
This US-based wallet and currency exchange operates in over 32 countries and trades the most common types of cryptocurrency available.
Users have unrivalled control over their cryptocurrency with this bitcoin wallet. Combined with a simple design and optional advanced safety features, this wallet is ideal for new and experienced bitcoin users.
This bitcoin wallet app offers a range of features, including encrypted and automated back-up, that has made it especially popular with online poker players and sports bettors.
For users that prioritize security, Armory is a full-featured wallet renowned for its online safety features and flexibility.
Depositing bitcoin into a crypto gambling site is simple. If playing with a bitcoin casino, users can directly deposit bitcoin into their account, and it will appear in their funds in seconds. Because the transfer is direct, there is no transaction fee.
If a gambling site can only accept indirect bitcoin deposits with eWallets, then a small transactional fee may be charged. Bettors can transfer money to their online gambling accounts using their virtual keys and bitcoin address, or a QR code.
Most online casinos will require bitcoin users to complete a verification process. While bitcoin prizes anonymity, some online casinos have a legal obligation to know the identity of their clients.
When withdrawing funds from a crypto casino, the process is instant and fuss-free. After the initial deposit has been made, bitcoin gambling sites can remember a user's wallet details and deposit withdrawals in your account instantly. If an online casino is unable to issue bitcoin payouts, it will usually offer bettors the equivalent amount in the currency of their country of residence.
If a bettor wants to transfer bitcoin into real money, there are several options available. The most common method is to sell it on a cryptocurrency exchange site but be prepared for verification processes and withdrawal limits for some currencies. Another option is bitcoin ATMs, however there are currently only 2,200 established worldwide. Some online exchanges will offer bitcoin payment in the form of prepaid debit cards, which is the most flexible option as it allows users purchase items online or in person.
Bitcoin gambling sites do not charge any transaction costs. As all transactions are completed directly, through a peer-to-peer network, there are no intermediary companies to pay. Multi-currency casinos may charge a transaction fee however to exchange the bitcoin into other currencies. The eWallet might charge too, although this is usually called a «miner's fee» to help the company continue to mine for bitcoins. At an average cost of $1 though, the fee is nominal.
For experienced bettors, bitcoin is a solution to many of their regular gripes about gambling online. The same benefits that attract users to bitcoin are the same possible solutions to these issues:
With crypto casinos, deposits and withdrawals are completed straightaway. This means players can enjoy their favorite casino games online within minutes, with no annoying transaction costs.
The anonymity bitcoin offers means crypto gamblers can rest assured that their data and funds are secure if they followed all the security steps their eWallets require from them.
Many gambling sites are keen for more bitcoin bettors to sign up. Players can receive exclusive and lucrative casino bonuses by making bitcoin deposits.
Bitcoin wallets use complex encryption algorithms to protect its contents. This encourages better cybersecurity habits in users, particularly those who use the same basic password across multiple accounts.
Fewer Geo-Location Restrictions
The digital environment of bitcoin means it can be accepted worldwide. Some gambling sites are unable to accept all currencies, making bitcoin's universality a helpful feature for these players.
No matter where players are located, they should always follow the gambling legislation in their country of residence, even when using bitcoin.
Bitcoin casinos and other cryptocurrency gambling sites are still establishing themselves. As a result, these sites have a smaller number of casino games available online. However, players can still find their favorites, including:
Bettors will be happy to hear they can still receive casino bonuses when gambling with bitcoin. These are the common casino bonuses players can expect to find:
This bonus is for new players that register with a casino site. Deposit a certain amount of funds, and the casino will reward you with additional credit in your account. Welcome bonuses are one of the best casino bonuses to get as the amounts can hit thousands in free credit.
Players should look out for these lucrative bonuses. Simply sign up with a casino, sportsbook, or poker site, and enjoy free credit to spend on casino games on the site. Unlike welcome bonuses, no deposit bonuses are much smaller, but players aren't required to deposit funds.
This casino bonus is particularly popular with slot and roulette players. Casino sites offer free spins to new players and their loyal bettors alike. Essentially, these give players extra gameplay for free, so don't miss the opportunity to get one of these bonuses.
When playing with a multi-currency casino, the casino bonus credit will take the form of whatever currency you chose to exchange with your bitcoin deposit. With crypto casinos, it will deposit funds using the cryptocurrency you chose to deposit. Bettors should read the deposit and withdrawal requirements for these casino bonuses. Given the volatility of bitcoin, the amount required to earn a bonus or withdraw winnings can be eye-wateringly expensive. Players should do some research before depositing funds to get the best deal for themselves.
Like regular casino sites, BTC casinos will offer loyal bettors additional bonuses for their gameplay. Search for crypto casinos that offer VIP/loyalty schemes, reload bonuses, cashback, or sticky bonuses. Bettors want a casino that rewards them for all their gameplay, not only when they first sign up.
As new bitcoin casinos appear online, players should always complete basic checks that they are a trustworthy and reputable site to play with. Just like you would with any new casinos use the guidelines below to find the best bitcoin sites for your gameplay:
While bitcoin casinos do not have the same geo-location restrictions, some countries still ban players from gambling on these sites. You don't want to win bitcoin jackpots and only discover afterwards that you're unable to withdraw your winnings.
All real bitcoin casinos should be licensed, and their games regularly inspected by an independent authority for randomness and fair play.
Players should look for casinos that offer exclusive bonuses for users depositing with cryptocurrency. These perks can greatly extend your gameplay.
Don't wait until after depositing your funds to discover that the BTC casino doesn't offer any of the games you play regularly!
Any good casino offers 24/7 customer support to its players.
Gambling with bitcoin can be new and exciting, particularly since winnings can be withdrawn instantaneously. According to bitcoin bettors, these are the best sportsbooks to check out in 2021.
Cloudbet Sports: With big welcome bonuses, high limits and a list of sports to rival regular sportsbooks, Cloudbet is one of the most popular bitcoin gambling sites online.
1xBit: This bitcoin gambling site accepts multiple cryptocurrencies and offers some of the largest varieties of bet types on a range of sports and events.
Nitrogen Sports: With the tagline 'created by gamblers for gamblers' Nitrogen's website shows it knows what bettors want in a sportsbook: lightning-fast transactions, competitive odds, and regular promos.
Sportsbet.io: This bitcoin sportsbook offers odds on all the major sport leagues, as well as competitive leaderboards between bettors.
When finding the best bitcoin sportsbooks, we recommend bettors check they offer competitive odds. Also verify if there are any withdrawal requirements, particularly when using bonuses.
After choosing a bitcoin betting site, setting up an eWallet, and buying your cryptocurrency, it is time to start betting. To help players make the most of their bitcoin bets, use the following tips below:
1. Understand the volatility of bitcoin. As currencies go, bitcoin is particularly volatile. This means its value changes several times a day. Before depositing any large bitcoin bankrolls, check that you are getting a good rate.
2. Be aware that bitcoin transactions are final. Bitcoin transactions operate on blockchain technology, which acts as a complete transparent record of the currency's history. Because blocks cannot be altered or deleted, transactions are final and irreversible.
3. Maintain strong security settings. Bitcoin is unregulated, so if your account is hacked or funds tampered with, there is no financial institution that can assist with recovery. Like any other online account, keep your details secure.
4. Check betting limits. Some BTC casinos or sportsbooks will add minimum betting limits to wagers. Bettors should always check they can afford these before depositing any funds.
5. Find the games with no house edge. BTC casinos and sportsbooks frequently offer casino games with zero house edge, sports bets with no betting margin, and poker games with no rake. These are uncommon on regular gambling sites, so take advantage of these deals where possible.
When it comes to trading bitcoin, some view it as gambling, others view it as investing. Generally, this depends on the person's approach. If someone buys and sells bitcoin based simply on a tip or gut feeling, this could be construed as 'gambling'. If the person were to study the cryptocurrency market and how bitcoin operates however, this could be called 'investing'. They are using information and probability as a base for their decisions.
Players will find that online casinos are increasingly accepting bitcoin through two models of gambling sites. Multi-currency casinos accept bitcoin indirectly through eWallets, with the casino exchanging the cryptocurrency into regular cash. The other option is bitcoin casinos, which only accept cryptocurrency and handle all deposits and withdrawals directly with the player.
Bettors can gamble with bitcoin at any online casino or sportsbook that accepts it as a payment option. Simply check the deposit and withdrawal information in the site's terms and conditions to find out more. Alternatively, some gambling sites will list their payment options in the footer of their website. The other place bettors can gamble with bitcoin is at specific bitcoin casinos and sportsbooks. These sites only accept cryptocurrency funds for deposits and withdrawals.
This depends on your country of residence. Most regions have no specific legislation on gambling online with bitcoin because it is so new. In these instances, bettors should follow their country's general legislation with online gambling. Some bitcoin casinos and sportsbooks will block users from specific countries. While this can be bypassed with VPN blockers, eWallets based in jurisdictions with strong regulations will close accounts found sending funds to gambling sites in these areas.