California Sports Betting Guide – Get Up To $5,000 In Free Bets

Are you looking for the best California sports betting sites available? Then you’re in the right place.

In this online betting in California guide, we will provide you with all you need to know about placing sports bets and claiming bonuses in the Golden State. We will also include important information regarding legal sports betting in California and review the best CA sportsbooks.

The Best California Sports Betting Sites List 2021

Although there aren’t any California sports betting sites registered in the State, you can register and play with a number of offshore platforms. These are licensed and regulated by competent jurisdictions and provide top-notch support combined with an extensive selection of US sports and betting markets.

  • BetOnline Best California Sports Betting Site for Overall Experience.
  • Bovada – Best for Live Streaming Betting in California.
  • MyBookie – Popular Bitcoin & Crypto Sportsbook.
  • BetUS – Best California Betting Site for Welcome Bonuses.
  • XBet – Top Provider for Mobile Sports Betting in California.
  • Intertops – Best CA Sportsbook for Value Lines.
  • – Best California Sports Betting Sites for News.
  • BetNow – Great Selection of NFL Contests.
  • GT Bets – Extensive Selection of Top Odds in California.
  • BUSR – Best Off Track Betting in California.

Is Sports Betting Legal in California?

The short answer is generally no. The only exception is horse racing.

This topic has been on the legislature’s agenda for several years and whilst it looked like there would be significant progress made in 2021, the proposal was shelved indefinitely. It is now unclear if and when the topic of legal sports betting in California will be brought up again.

However, given that several other States, including New Jersey and Nevada, are enjoying the benefits of legalizing sports betting, it is likely that pressure from residents will re-ignite the subject.

Online Sportsbooks

Since online betting in California remains illegal, there are no online sportsbooks registered in the State. However, there does not seem to be any effort made to stop residents from wagering on offshore betting sites.

You will find hundreds of sites that let you carry out sports betting in California, but you should always pick ones that are licensed by competent jurisdictions. These include Curacao and Panama.

Land based Betting

With the exception of horse racing, all forms of sports betting are illegal in the State. The only convenient workaround is to place bets on the best sports betting sites in California.

Horse Racing & Off Track Betting in California

Horse racing is the only form of sports betting in California that is allowed at race tracks.  Some of the best-known tracks include the Del Mar Track, Santa Anita Park, Golden Gate Fields and the Los Alamitos Racecourse.

Just like sports betting in California online, off track betting is prohibited. Nevertheless, there are several reputable online sportsbooks that let you place bets on both national and international races.

Timeline of California Sports Betting Legislation

When it comes to sports betting, California is surprisingly as conservative as Texas. This has prevented any legal betting sites in California and has pushed residents to play on offshore platforms instead. There are, without a doubt, thousands of residents that would vote in favor of legislation set to legalize sports betting in California. So far, however, progress has been frustratingly slow.

Here is an overview of the main milestones in the States’ move towards legalization.

  • 2018 – The US Supreme Court passes a ruling which removes a federal ban on sports betting.
  • 2020 – The Joint Assembly and Senate Governmental Organization Committees held a meeting to explore what a legalized sports betting system could look like.
  • 2021 – California sports betting legislation is put on hold as the State for various reasons, including the Governor’s election and the pandemic.

Even though the California sports betting bill looks set for further delays, there is growing interest from both legislators and private entities. During the 2020 meeting at the State Capitol, a research company explained how the industry could become worth over $2.5 billion.

The best action you can take if you would like to see this California sports betting bill back on the debate table is to contact your State’s representatives.

Offshore Betting in California

Whilst the law in California clearly prohibits any entity from offering gambling services in the State, the legality of signing up with offshore betting sites is less clear. As a result, thousands of residents are searching for the best sports betting sites in California and are receiving generous bonuses for signing up.

With so much choice available, it can be tricky to pick the right platform for you. This is why our team at SportsLens has researched through hundreds of sites and chosen the best ones. You can sign up with any of our recommended California sports betting sites in minutes and start betting right away.

Before you start online sports betting in California, it is important that you choose a reliable platform. Since it is impossible to find a platform that is licensed by the State, you could be scammed by an unscrupulous provider.

You can avoid this potential hassle by signing up with one of our recommended best California sportsbooks. These providers have a track record of timely payouts and round-the-clock support.

Are DFS Legal in California? FanDuel DFS

This is a tricky question because Daily Fantasy Sports are not listed in any legislation. As a result, they are certainly not illegal. In addition, top DFS sites, such as FanDuel and DraftKings have been actively onboarding players from the State.

California Casino Laws

As we’ve mentioned earlier in this California sports betting guide, land-based casinos are allowed to operate legally on tribal land. However, just like there is no form of legal online sports betting in California, online casinos are not allowed.

Perhaps unsurprisingly, this has not stopped eager players that have opted to connect with offshore casino gambling sites.

Online Casinos

Since the State does not offer licenses for online casinos, you should never trust any platform that says that is licensed from CA. If you are looking for the best California sportsbooks that also offer online casinos, we recommend you try:

Land Based Casinos

According to the California Gambling Commission, there were 66 licensed, land-based casinos in the State as of the start of 2021. In addition, there were 89 legal card rooms.

Some of the best-known land-based casinos in CA include:

  • Artichoke Joe’s Casino (San Bruno)
  • Agua Caliente Spa Resort Casino (Palm Springs)
  • Graton Resort & Casino (Rohnert Park)
  • Pechanga Resort Casino (Temecula)
  • Harrah`s Resort Southern California (Valley Center)

Whilst California sports betting remains illegal, land-based casinos are allowed on tribal land. The government has also sanctioned several card rooms which only allow a selection of card games, such as poker.

How Gambling is Taxed in California

This section is only intended to provide general information about gambling taxes in California. We recommend that you speak to a professional tax advisor for specific information.

California has one of the highest gambling tax rates in the country. You can be charged anywhere between 1% and 13.3% on winnings. However, you can also deduct losses through itemized filings.

In addition to State tax, you will also need to pay the federal tax rate of 24%.

Best California Sportsbooks Reviewed

Now that you have a clearer picture of sports betting in California, let’s have a look at the top five best sports betting sites in California.

1. BetOnline – Best California Sports Betting Site for Overall Experience

BetOnline Sportsbook

There are several reasons why we have picked BetOnline as being the best California sports betting site. For starters, the platform provides over 25 sports, including major national and international championships.

Another reason why we believe that BetOnline is the best California betting site is its range of markets. In addition to the common ones, such as moneylines, this sportsbook lets you create parlays and bet on if bets and teasers.

This California sports betting site is welcoming new players with a 100% match deposit bonus worth up to $1,000. Before you can withdraw this bonus, you will need to place wages on bets with odds of 2:1 or better. You will have 30 days to fulfill this requirement. Enter promo code BOL1000 to claim your BetOnline welcome bonus.

BetOnline Pros:

  • Generous welcome offers
  • 24/7 live chat support
  • Accepts USD and cryptocurrencies
  • Comprehensive choice of markets

BetOnline Cons:

  • Fees on some withdrawal options

2. Bovada - Best Sports Betting in California Platform for Streaming

Bovada Sportsbook

Bovada is the best California sportsbook for streaming. In fact, it is the only reputable platform that offers this service to residents of CA. In addition to letting you watch games, the sportsbook offers a comprehensive selection of live bets.

We also consider Bovada to have one of the best sports betting app in California. Available for both Android and iOS devices, it provides a user-friendly and intuitive interface where you can place a bet with just a couple of taps.

When you register a new Bovada account, you will be able to claim a new player bonus worth up to $750. The sportsbook will provide you with a 100% match deposit, but only if you fund your account using cryptocurrencies. To withdraw your bonus, you will need to fulfill a rollover requirement on bets with odds of 2:1 or better. Use promo code BTCSWB750 to receive your Bovada bonus.

Bovada Pros:

  • Streaming on select matches is available
  • $1 bets accepted
  • Great selection of sports and eSports
  • No expiry period for welcome bonus

Bovada Cons:

  • Relatively small eSports selection

3. MyBookie - Top California Sports Betting Site for Using Cryptocurrencies

MyBookie Sportsbook

MyBookie ranks third in our sports betting in California list since it does not offer streaming. However, like Bovada, it offers over 20 different sports, eSports, and events. It includes top championships, including the NFL and MLB, and a variety of pre-game and in-play bets.

Unfortunately, it does not feature the same range of creative bets. Whilst its supports parlays, it does not offer if bets or teasers.

If you are looking for the best sports betting app in California, MyBookie might not appear. However, although it doesn’t offer a downloadable app, it does provide a mobile-friendly website that is accessible across different devices.

Another reason why MyBookie ranks third, and not second in our California sports betting leader table is its welcome bonus. It welcomes new players with a 100% match bonus of up to $1,000. However, to be able to withdraw your winnings, you need to fulfil a rollover requirement on bets with odds of 2.5:1 or higher. On a positive note, there is no time limit to fulfill this requirement. Use promo code MYB100 to claim your MyBookie welcome bonus.

MyBookie Pros:

  • Mobile-friendly sportsbook
  • Top odds for live bets
  • Great cryptocurrency bonuses
  • Features virtual sports

MyBookie Cons:

  • Welcome bonus odds are relatively high

4. BetUS - Best California Betting Site for Welcome Bonuses

BetUS Sportsbook

BetUS blows the welcome bonuses offered by the previous three California sports betting sites right out of the water. As a new player, you will be able to more than double your first deposit. In fact, the sportsbook is offering a 125% match bonus worth up to $2,500.

This reward comes with a small catch. You must fulfill the rollover requirement on bets with odds of 2.8:1 or better. What’s more, you will only have 14 days to meet this condition and you must pay using cryptocurrencies. Enter promo code JOIN125 when making your first payment.

We consider BetUS to be the best California sportsbook for fans of NFL, NBA, MLB, and NHL. You will find a good selection of pre-game and live markets include several creative bets. It is also our best sports betting app California for fast payouts.

BetUS Pros:

  • Very generous welcome bonus
  • Fast payouts with cryptocurrencies
  • Great live betting options
  • 24/7 live chat support

BetUS Cons:

  • Only 14 days until the welcome offer expires

5. XBet - Top Provider for Mobile Sports Betting in California

XBet Sportsbook

XBet might be ranked at the fifth-best California sports betting site, however, it excels in offering a superb customer experience for both sports fans and online casino players. The XBet sportsbook features over 20 different sports, including soccer, horse racing, and golf. Apart from being user-friendly, it is available on both desktop and mobile.

This Bitcoin sportsbook also wins our recognition for being the best California sportsbook for beginners. It only takes a few minutes to get used to the minimalist website. Once you register an account, you can place your first sports bet in seconds. In addition, help is always at hand through a 24/7 live chat option.

If you enjoy sports betting in California, XBet is certainly worth a try. For signing up and placing your deposit, the sportsbook will reward you with a 100% match deposit of up to $500. This might not sound like much, however, the offer’s conditions are reasonable. To meet the rollover requirement, you will need to place bets with odds of 2:1 or higher, and there is no expiration date. You do not need to enter any promo code to receive your XBet reward.

Xbet Pros:

  • Reasonable bonus terms
  • Quick cryptocurrency payouts
  • 24/7 live chat support
  • Easy to use

Xbet Cons:

  • Relatively small bonus

California Betting Sites Comparison

Even after having reviewed our top five California sports betting sites, you might be unclear which one to register with. This is why we have created this sports betting in California comparison table. It should allow you to easily compare key characteristics and help you identify the best sportsbook for you.

Remember that you are free to open an account with as many California sports betting sites as you wish. By doing this, you will stay informed of the latest offers and promotions and be able to claim different welcome bonuses.

Number of Sports Welcome Bonus Live Streaming Payment Methods
BetOnline 20 100% deposit match up to $1,000 No Credit card, debit card, wire transfer, Bitcoin, Bitcoin Cash, Ripple, Ethereum, Litecoin
MyBookie 18 100% deposit match up to $1,000 No Credit card, debit card, wire transfer, Bitcoin, Bitcoin Cash, Ripple, Ethereum, Litecoin
Bovada 22 100% Bitcoin deposit match up to $750 Yes Credit card, debit card, Zelle, Bitcoin, Bitcoin Cash, Litecoin
BetUS 22 125% deposit match up to $2,500 No Credit card, bank wire, Bitcoin, Bitcoin Cash, Ethereum, Litecoin
XBet 21 100% deposit match up to $500 No Credit card, debit card, Bitcoin, Bitcoin Cash, Litecoin
Intertops 17 100% deposit match up to $500 No Credit card, debit card, Bitcoin, Bitcoin Cash, Skrill 16 100% deposit match up to $1,000 No Credit card, debit card, Bitcoin, Bitcoin Cash, Ethereum, Litecoin, Ripple
BetNow 10 100% deposit match up to $500 No Credit card, debit card, Bitcoin, Bitcoin Cash
GT Bets 18 100% deposit match up to $500 No Credit card, debit card, Bitcoin, Bitcoin Cash, Litecoin, Ripple
BUSR 17 20% deposit match up to $500 No Credit card, debit card, Bitcoin, Litecoin

How to Bet on Sports in California

Now we're going to walk you through step by step how to get started with online betting in the Golden State, using our recommended California mobile sportsbook, BetOnline.

Step 1: Create a BetOnline Account

Visit the BetOnline website and click the ‘Join Now' button. You then just need to provide some basic details such as your name, email, phone number, date of birth, and a password to kick things off.BetOnline Create Account

Step 2: Verify Your Email

Next BetOnline will send a verification link to your email address which you need to click on it verify your account.

Step 3: Deposit Funds

You can fund your BetOnline account with a variety of different methods, including debit cards, credit cards, wire transfer, or cryptocurrencies like Bitcoin, Bitcoin Cash, Ethereum, Litecoin, and Ripple. BetOnline Make a Deposit

Step 4: Start Betting

Time to get betting. Browse what's on offer, pick out a market that catches your eye and place your wagers!



Sports betting in California is a popular and exciting pastime. Even though legalization has been slow, several reputable and offshore online sportsbooks let you place bets on your favorite team and competitions.

Until California sports betting is legalized, the State will continue to lose out on potential tax revenue and other benefits. In the meantime, international sportsbooks will be more than happy to offer sports betting in California.

Frequently Asked Questions on California Sports Betting

Can you bet on sports in California?

Is it illegal to bet on sports in California?

When will sports betting be legal in California?

Is DraftKings sportsbook legal in California?

What is the best sports betting app in California?