Pennsylvania Legal Sports Betting Overview
|PA Sports Betting Law Details||Status|
|📆 Retail Sports Betting Launch Date:||November 2018|
|📆 Online Sports Betting Launch Date:||May 2019|
|✅ Licensed Sportsbooks:||Barstool Sportsbook, Betfred, BetMGM, BetRivers, Betway, Caesars, DraftKings, FanDuel, FOX Bet, betPARX, PointsBet, SugarHouse Sportsbook, Unibet, TwinSpires|
|💵 Legal Wagering Options:||Futures, moneylines, parlays, point spreads, same game parlays, teasers, totals|
|🔞 Legal Gambling Age in PA:||21+|
|🏈 Sports to Bet On:||NFL, NBA, MLB, NHL, MLS, MMA, tennis, golf, boxing, motorsports, cricket, European soccer, college sports|
|🏦 Permitted Banking Options:||Mastercard, PayNearMe, PayPal, Play+, Skrill, Visa, Automated Clearing House (ACH), casino cage cashier|
|⚖️ Pennsylvania Gambling Regulator:||Pennsylvania Gaming Control Board|
Pennsylvania Sports Betting Summary
Pennsylvania was ready for sports betting long before the US Supreme Court struck down the Professional and Amateur Sports Protection Act of 1992 (PASPA), which outlawed sports wagering, in 2018. Governor Tom Wolf and PA lawmakers passed HB 271 to legalize sports betting back in 2017. The Keystone State hit the ground running by launching its own regulated betting following the federal decision in the PASPA case.
Pennsylvania moved quickly to launch retail sports betting in November 2018. In May 2019, PA online sports betting went live, with SugarHouse Sportsbook taking the first online bets in the state. Pennsylvania now offers 14 online and retail sportsbooks, such as Caesars and BetMGM. With successful franchises in every major sport, PA has become one of the biggest sports betting markets in the US and is a blueprint for other legal betting states. Read our complete guide to understand everything you need to know about sports betting in PA.
Pennsylvania Online Sportsbooks Compared
There are 14 sportsbooks available in Pennsylvania. The state is home to some of the top betting brands in the country, including US brands like FanDuel and Fox Bet as well as international ones like PointsBet and Unibet. Our betting experts have compared the PA sportsbooks across key criteria like usability, features, promotions, odds, and market coverage throughout this guide. Keep reading to find the best sports betting site or app for you.
Best Mobile App – DraftKings
DraftKings mobile app, which is available on Apple and Android devices, is ranked in both Google Play and the Apple App stores as one of the best sports betting apps in the US. The app is straightforward to use, with steady connectivity, easy-to-understand navigation, and clear sports betting markets. Not to mention its live streaming, which is only available on the app. It also offers mobile-exclusive features, like event notifications and mobile-only promotions, setting it apart from the competition.
Best Welcome Bonus – PointsBet
The PointsBet welcome bonus beats rival offers in Pennsylvania. New PA bettors can claim $2,000 in risk-free bets. That’s $500 in fixed odds betting and $1,500 in points betting. If your wager loses, you get whatever you lost back in free bets. The best part about this offer is that it has no wagering requirements, meaning you don’t need to wager your winnings before withdrawing.
Best for Competitive Odds – Caesars
While many Pennsylvania sportsbooks offer competitive betting odds, Caesars sportsbook provides the best across all its markets. In particular, prop betting at Caesars is very generous. The sportsbook also provides odds boosts on major league sports daily.
Best for Market Coverage – FanDuel
Most sportsbooks offer a broad range of sports markets, but FanDuel also provides horse racing betting through its site. Ultimately, this sets the betting site ahead of its competitors, like BetMGM and BetRivers, which also offer betting lines on a wide range of US and global sports.
Best for Beginner Bettors – BetMGM
BetMGM offers everything beginner bettors could want, with an excellent sportsbook app, a simple interface, a generous welcome bonus, and regular boosted odds. While other sportsbooks may be superior in particular areas, BetMGM is the best all-rounder for new bettors.
Best for Payout Speed – DraftKings
DraftKings sportsbook has the fastest payout of any Pennsylvania sportsbook. Many payment methods provide instant withdrawals – it doesn’t get any faster. FanDuel and PointsBet also offer instant payouts to bettors in the Keystone State. You should note that other Pennsylvania sportsbooks provide fast payouts, although typically within 48 hours.
How to Place a Bet in Pennsylvania
Pennsylvania launched their online sports betting market in May 2019, but this type of wagering may still be new to some sports fans We've put together a step-by-step guide to help you place your first bet in minutes:
Choose one of the many PA sportsbooks available in the Keystone State.
If your sportsbook has an app, you can find it on the Apple App Store or Google Play Store. Or you can download it from the sportsbook’s site.
Register an account by providing your full name, date of birth, address, phone number, and last four digits of your Social Security number. You will also need to create a username and password.
Visit the site's cashier section and follow the sportsbook’s instructions to make your first deposit. Many deposits will unlock a sportsbooks welcome bonus, so read the terms of this offer and claim it.
Browse through your sportsbook's markets. Choose a wager, add it to your bet slip, and place your first bet using your welcome offer.
If your first bet wins, revisit the cashier section, where the sportsbook will guide you through making a withdrawal.
Banking Methods Available in Pennsylvania
The Pennsylvania Gaming Control Board enforces standard regulations on the payment methods available at PA sportsbooks, giving bettors access to a wide range of banking options. Bank cards like Visa and Mastercard are eligible for deposits but are sometimes not available for withdrawal. Some banks, like American Express, still block transactions to sports betting sites. You can also fund your account and cash out your winnings via e-wallets, with readily available options like PayPal and Skrill. Many sportsbooks allow Play+ prepaid cards or deposits at retail locations using PayNearMe.
Pennsylvania regulations state that $10 is the minimum required for a deposit or a withdrawal. However, sportsbooks can set minimums above this amount.
Who is Eligible to Bet in PA?
You must be 21 years old and within the state’s borders to wager legally in Pennsylvania. There are also particular circumstances and restrictions on bettors in specific jobs and positions who cannot place bets, including:
University sports team staff, coaches, and athletes.
Referees from professional leagues, minor leagues, and athletics competitions.
Individuals in a professional position to influence players.
Individuals who own a stake in a sports team.
Employees of organizations that hold licenses from the Pennsylvania Gaming Control Board to provide sports betting. This includes key staff, officers, owners, and directors.
Individuals with access to non-public information about sports teams or competitions that may affect outcomes (e.g., player medical records).
Individuals that have voluntarily excluded themselves from gambling activities.
Individuals prohibited from betting at a state or federal level (e.g., due to criminal history).
Latest Pennsylvania Sports Betting Updates
Current Sports Betting Status in West Virginia
Both retail and online sports betting are legal and regulated in Pennsylvania. Most forms of sports betting are permitted in the state, allowing you to bet on major league sports, top international competitions, minor leagues, and college sports. However, eSports betting is still not regulated.
Timeline for Sports Betting in Pennsylvania
March 16, 2022: Parx Casino relaunches its online betting and gaming products. Powered by Playtech, the betPARX app is now live in Pennsylvania.
March 2020: Reports say 90% of wagers in Pennsylvania come from online sportsbooks. This report coincides with the start of the COVID-19 pandemic, which closes retail sportsbooks.
May 31, 2019: SugarHouse Sportsbook is the first online sportsbook to launch and takes the first legal online bets.
November 17, 2018: The Hollywood Casino at Penn National is the first sportsbook to start taking legal sports wagers.
May 2018: The US Supreme Court rules in New Jersey’s favor and strikes down PASPA, giving states the right to legalize sports betting.
October 30, 2017: Gov. Wolf signs HB 271 legalizing sports betting in Pennsylvania.
Pennsylvania Sports Betting Background
The first attempt to legalize sports betting in Pennsylvania was made in 2015 when Rep. Rick Kotik presented HB 1627 to the House of Representatives. The bill was co-sponsored by Rep. Rob Matzie, but it failed to pass in the House. However, Rep. Matzie returned in January 2017 with HB 519. The House signed off the bill in April, but it failed to pass again.
However, 2017 was a successful year for sports betting in PA, as Representative Jason Ortitay put HB 271 to the House. This bill passed all the way through to Gov. Wolf, who signed it on October 30, 2017, to make sports betting legal in the Keystone State. Pennsylvania lawmakers and the Pennsylvania Gaming Control Board didn’t take any further action until the decision to repeal PASPA was made on May 14, 2018.
Future of Pennsylvania Sports Betting
The most significant change on the horizon of legalization is eSports betting. HB 1580 was introduced to the House of Representatives in June 2021, but the House referred the bill to the Gaming Oversight Committee. HB 1580 is still under consideration and, if passed, could bring a whole new wagering market to the state.
There is a limit of 14 legal casinos in Pennsylvania, 13 of which already have retail sportsbooks. Future legislation may change these restrictions or allow sportsbooks to launch retail sportsbooks in stadiums, as is the case in Arizona. However, this is not a topic for lawmakers currently.
Pennsylvania Sports Betting Locations
There are 13 retail sportsbooks at casinos across Pennsylvania where you can visit and place sports bets. Here are some of the most popular casinos offering sports wagering:
Mohegan Sun Pocono
Address: 1280 PA-315, Wilkes-Barre, PA 18702
Phone Number: (570) 831-2100
As one of Pennsylvania’s gambling-only racinos, the Mohegan Sun is an excellent environment for those looking for retail sports betting in Pennsylvania. The casino has over 2,300 slot games, and there is also the live harness horse racing to wager on. The Unibet retail sportsbook has a 28-foot wide HD video screen, a full-service bar, and six different betting kiosks for wagering.
Address: 777 Harrah’s Boulevard, Chester, PA 19013
Phone Number: (484) 490-1800
Harrahs Philadelphia Casino features both a vast casino and onsite horse racing track. The onsite Caesars sportsbook is top class too, with six different live betting windows for patrons. The 4,300 square foot Pennsylvania sportsbook also has 20 85-inch TVs and 45 large screen TVs.
Mount Airy Casino
Address: 312 Woodland Road, Mount Pocono, PA 18344
Phone Number: (877) 682-4791
Operator: FOX Bet
The Mount Airy Casino is extensive and offers 1,800 slot games, over 70 table games, and a poker room. The poker room is attached to the FOX Bet sportsbook. The sportsbook is 7,000 square feet, making it one of the biggest in the state. It offers 40 different TVs for watching games, and there are three human-operated tellers and eight sports betting kiosks.
|Hollywood Casino at the Meadows||210 Racetrack Road, Washington, PA 15301||(724) 503-1200||Barstool Sportsbook|
|Hollywood Casino (Morgantown)||6021 Morgantown Road, Morgantown, PA 19543||(610) 286-8300||Barstool Sportsbook|
|Hollywood Casino (York)||2899 Whiteford Road, York, PA 17402||(223) 232-6200||Barstool Sportsbook|
|Live! Casino Philadelphia||900 Packer Avenue, Philadelphia, PA 19148||(833) 472-5483||FanDuel|
|Parx Casino||2999 Street Road, Bensalem, PA 19020||(888) 588-7279||betPARX|
|Rivers Pittsburgh||777 Casino Drive, Pittsburgh, PA 15212||(412) 231-7777||BetRivers|
|Rivers Philadelphia (Formerly SugarHouse)||1001 N. Delaware Avenue, Philadelphia, PA 19125||(877) 477-3715||BetRivers|
|South Philadelphia Race & Sportsbook||700 Packer Avenue, Philadelphia, PA 19148||(215) 551-8270||betPARX|
|Valley Forge Casino||1160 1st Avenue, King of Prussia, PA 19406||(610) 354-8118||FanDuel|
|Wind Creek Casino||77 Wind Creek Boulevard, Bethlehem, PA 18015||(484) 777-7777||Betfred|
Pennsylvania Lottery Locations
The Pennsylvania Lottery operates all retail and online lottery draws in the state. However, it has no partnerships with any sportsbook, so you can’t place sports bets at retail lottery locations. This is unlikely to change soon.
Off-Track and Stadium Betting Locations
There is a rich history of horse racing in Pennsylvania, with six racetracks in the state. The Pennsylvania Horse Racing Commission oversees all horse races and pari-mutuel betting. There used to be many off-track betting (OTB) locations in Pennsylvania, including five Parx Turf Club locations. However, many of these OTB retailers have shut down. Some of the OTB betting locations that remain offer retail sportsbooks.
Many sportsbooks have signed partnerships with Pennsylvania stadiums and have opened retailed sportsbook lounges. However, Pennsylvania law means that these lounges cannot offer sports betting through tellers or kiosks. Instead, you’re encouraged to wager in these sportsbook lounges while enjoying the food and drink facilities.
|Acrisure Stadium (Pittsburgh Steelers)||100 Art Rooney Avenue, Pittsburgh, PA 15212||(412) 697-7150|
|Citizens Bank Park (Philadelphia Phillies)||1 Citizens Bank Way, Philadelphia, PA 19148||(215) 463-1000|
|Lincoln Financial Field (Philadelphia Eagles)||One Lincoln Financial Field Way, Philadelphia, PA 19148||(215) 463-5500|
|PNC Park (Pittsburgh Pirates)||115 Federal Street, Pittsburgh, PA 15212||(412) 321-2827|
|PPG Paints Arena (Pittsburgh Penguins)||1001 Fifth Avenue, Pittsburgh, PA 15219||(412) 642-1800|
|South Philadelphia Race and Sportsbook||700 Packer Avenue, Philadelphia, PA 19148||(215) 551-8270|
|The Downs at Lehigh Valley||1780 Airport Road, Allentown, PA 18109||(610) 266-6559|
|Wells Fargo Center (Philadelphia 76ers & Philadelphia Flyers)||3601 S. Broad Street, Philadelphia, PA 19148||(215) 336-3600|
Pennsylvania Responsible Gambling Resources
The Council on Compulsive Gambling of Pennsylvania – Provides a free helpline, resources on problem gambling, and puts on educational events. (800) 522-4700
Pennsylvania Gaming Control Board – Offers an online chat, helpline, and links to further support organizations. (800) 522-4700
Gamblers Anonymous PA – Runs regular meetings in Pennsylvania that struggling bettors can attend for support. (909) 931-9056
Pennsylvania sports betting laws require every sportsbook to offer responsible-gambling resources and support, including tools like self-exclusion, allowing you to block your own access to sports betting voluntarily. More tools allow you to control your betting, spending limits, and time spent on a sportsbook site. Sportsbook websites must also include links to problem gambling support organizations.
Teams to Bet on in Pennsylvania
Philadelphia Eagles: Winning its only Super Bowl in 2017 by beating the New England Patriots 41-33, the Eagles have always had a passionate fan base.
Pittsburgh Steelers: The Steelers have more championship rings than can fit on the one hand. Those six Super Bowl victories are the joint-most of any NFL franchise. The team also has 24 Division championships.
Philadelphia 76ers: The state’s only NBA franchise has been successful throughout its history, most recently winning a Division title in 2021.
Philadelphia Phillies: The Phillies are Philadelphia’s MLB franchise that has enjoyed some success in the past, winning two World Series.
Pittsburgh Pirates: The Pittsburgh Pirates are one of the most successful franchises in MLB history, winning five World Series from just seven appearances.
Philadelphia Flyers: The Flyers could have at least as many Stanley Cups as its rivals, the Pittsburgh Penguins. However, the franchise has a 2-6 record in these games.
Pittsburgh Penguins: Recent history has been kind to the Penguins, with two Stanley Cups victories in the last decade. Overall, the franchise has five wins, with a 5-1 record in Stanley Cup Finals.
Bucknell Bison: The Bisons represent Bucknell University in the Patriot League for most sports, including soccer, water polo, and basketball.
Drexel Dragons: The Dragons haven’t seen much NCAA championship success. However, Drexel University does have a graduation rate of 91% in the last ten years, much higher than the average 85%.
Duquesne Dukes: Duquesne University has never won an NCAA championship, but the Dukes play an annual basketball game against the University of Pittsburgh's Panthers called the City Game.
Lafayette Leopards: There are 11 men’s varsity teams, 11 female varsity teams, and one co-ed sport at Lafayette College.
La Salle Explorers: The Explorers won the NCAA men’s basketball tournament in 1954, but La Salle University hasn’t seen much success since.
Lehigh Mountain Hawks: Lehigh University's Mountain Hawks have a famous rivalry with Lafayette College's Leopards, the most-played game in college football history.
Penn Quakers: The Quakers sponsor 33 varsity teams, and the University of Pennsylvania has won three NCAA national championships in fencing.
Penn State Nittany Lions: Pennsylvania State University has a long history of success, finishing in the top 25 of the NACDA Directors Cup for the most successful college sports programs every year.
Pittsburgh Panthers: Playing FBS Division I football, the Panthers regularly compete for the Atlantic Coast Conference Championship. The University of Pittsburgh also has the distinction of being one of a handful of schools with multiple national championships in both football and basketball.
Robert Morris Colonials: Representing Robert Morris University, the Colonials have played in the NCAA men’s basketball tournament eight times, only making it past the first round in 2015.
Saint Francis Red Flash: Saint Francis University's women’s basketball team has made it to the NCAA Tournament 11 times but never made it past the first round.
Saint Joseph’s Hawks: The Hawks are a part of the Philadelphia Big 5, an informal rivalry between five schools in Philadelphia. The teams play each other every year in basketball, and the team with the best record wins the Big 5. Saint Joseph's University have 20 championships.
Temple Owls: There are 19 varsity teams at Temple University, with the Owls winning three national team championships in its history.
Villanova Wildcats: The Wildcats compete in the Big East NCAA Division I for all sports except football and rowing. Villanova University's basketball program has done well in recent years, with three national championships overall. The school also excels at women’s cross country with nine national team championships.
Pittsburgh Passion: The Passion is a professional women’s tackle football team playing in the Women’s Football Alliance. It was the first women’s football franchise to broadcast games on a major TV network.
How Does Pennsylvania Compare to Other States?
Pennsylvania has a very open betting market covering most sports found in other legal gambling states that offer sports betting. There are also no restrictions on college sports betting. Some states like New Jersey do not allow wagering on in-state games, and others like Tennessee don’t allow prop bets on athletes.
Competitive Odds & Prices
When looking at odds offered by Pennsylvania sportsbooks and those from other states, we found no major differences. Most of the sportsbooks available in the state provide very competitive odds.
Since Pennsylvania has legalized sports betting, the state has handled $13,746,491,797, with $1,013,751,455 in revenue for sportsbook operators. This betting handle is the third-largest in US history. What’s impressive is how the 36% tax rate that Pennsylvania applies to sportsbook operators has done for its tax revenue. Despite having half the betting handle of New Jersey, Pennsylvania has made $240,853,837 in tax revenue, which is higher than NJ. In fact, it’s the highest tax revenue of any state in the US.
The state is likely to be overtaken in the future. For example, since online sports betting launched in PA, New York charges a 51% tax on operators and handles more than $1 billion every month. However, Pennsylvania paved the way in showing high tax-rate states can be successful.
Every sportsbook must pay an excise tax of 0.25% of the sports betting handle. The tax rate on operators in Pennsylvania is 36%, which is high compared to other states like New Jersey at 14.25%. However, it is still lower than New York at 51%.
You must declare all your betting winnings when submitting tax to the IRS. If you win above $600 when wagering on sports, sportsbooks could hold up to 24% of your gambling winnings. While you may need to pay tax, you can claim a portion of this amount back. Pennsylvania also taxes 3.07% on income, which includes betting winnings.
Who Oversees Sports Betting in Pennsylvania?
The Pennsylvania Gaming Control Board oversees all sports betting in Pennsylvania. This organization is responsible for licensing and regulating any sportsbook that launches in the state, including each betting site that has signed a relevant partnership with a qualifying casino. Yet, the only casinos eligible for this license are those that offer slot machines. Any sportsbook that signs a partnership with a casino can also launch at an OTB location and provide an online sportsbook.
The Pennsylvania Gaming Control Board also collects taxes from these operations and issues any fines for not following its regulations. This includes responsible gambling measures requiring sportsbooks to offer the state self-exclusion program.
- Is betting legal in Pennsylvania?
Yes, sports betting is legal in Pennsylvania. You can place bets with any sportsbook licensed by the Pennsylvania Gaming Control Board.
- Who governs sports betting in Pennsylvania?
The Pennsylvania Gaming Control Board oversees sports betting in Pennsylvania. This organization is also responsible for licensing sportsbooks.
- How old do you have to be to bet in Pennsylvania?
You must be at least 21 years old to place legal wagers in Pennsylvania.
- When did sports betting launch in Pennsylvania?
Retail sports betting launched in Pennsylvania in November 2018, with online sports betting going live in May 2019.
- What sportsbooks are legal in Pennsylvania?
You can access DraftKings, Caesars, FanDuel, FOX Bet, betPARX, SugarHouse Sportsbook, Unibet, Betway, BetRivers, BetMGM, Betfred, Barstool Sportsbook, PointsBet, and TwinSpires in Pennsylvania.
- Are sportsbooks in Pennsylvania safe?
Any sportsbooks licensed by the Pennsylvania Gaming Control Board are safe for you to access in PA. Licensed betting sites must pass strict tests that the state runs on bettor safety measures.
- Do I have to pay taxes on betting winnings in Pennsylvania?
Yes, you must pay taxes to the IRS on your Pennsylvania betting winnings. You must declare all your gambling winnings, yet your betting tax will depend on your yearly income and relationship status.
- Can you play DraftKings in Pennsylvania?
Yes, you can play DraftKings in Pennsylvania, thanks to the sportsbook’s partnership with the Hollywood Casino at the Meadows.
- Can you play FanDuel in Pennsylvania?
You can play FanDuel in Pennsylvania. The online sportsbook launched in PA on July 22, 2019.
- Can you play BetMGM in Pennsylvania?
Yes, you can play BetMGM in Pennsylvania. You can download the BetMGM app on Apple or Android devices and bet on your favorite sports and markets.
- Can you play Caesars in Pennsylvania?
You can access the Caesars online sportsbook in Pennsylvania. You can also find its retail sportsbook at Harrah’s Philadelphia.
- Can you play TwinSpires in Pennsylvania?
Yes, TwinSpires sportsbook is available in Pennsylvania. However, the operator is closing down its betting site soon.
- Which sportsbooks will be available in Pennsylvania in the future?
Only 14 sportsbooks can launch in Pennsylvania, with each betting site having to partner with one of the 14 casinos. There are currently 14 sportsbooks operating in the state, but TwinSpires is shutting down in the future.