West Virginia online sports betting is proving both popular and successful. The state itself might be fairly small and viewed as being a little off the beaten path, but in the world of sports betting it has been a prominent leader. Not only regarding the speed of its legalization but also in terms of the breadth of what it makes available to the sports betting consumer.
West Virginia was the fifth state to legalize sports gambling in America, and the third to offer online sports gambling – trailing only Nevada and New Jersey. But when you consider New Jersey’s restriction on all betting on NCAA sports that take place inside the state, West Virginia surpasses them in the liberalization of its laws.
West Virginia online sports betting is a fairly recent development, but the state has a long history with sports betting in general. Those roots can be traced back to the early 1930s and legalized horse and greyhound racing. Even today, the state offers year-round thoroughbred racing and remains as one of the few in which greyhound racing is still legal.
As in the rest of the country, the real push for sports betting came far more recently. The state debated and planned for the possibility of adding sportsbooks for several years. Then, in 2018, West Virginia lawmakers saw the writing on the wall at the Supreme Court and passed their own law two months before the Supreme Court made its ruling.
That happened in May of 2018. Before the NFL kicked off its season that September, the West Virginia Lottery Commission - the regulatory body for all things gambling in the state - had its rules in place. The sportsbook at Hollywood Casino took the very first bet in the state on Aug. 30, 2018.
By that December, online sportsbooks were up and running and taking wagers too.
You can place wagers on everything from the NFL and NBA right through to cycling and darts, as well as all sports in between. You can wager on all the big events, like the Kentucky Derby, the Super Bowl, Wimbledon, the NCAA Tournament, and all regular-season games too.
The types of wagers you can place in West Virginia are also just as comprehensive.
Take the points, or lay them. A point spread is used to determine the favorite, and the underdog and your bet is a winner if the team covers the points.
A win/loss bet that uses odds to determine the difference between the favorite and the underdog. In American moneylines, a plus sign denotes the underdog, and a minus sign is the favorite.
Also known as an over/under bet, this bet is on the total combined points scored, and if the number will go over or under the posted line.
Small bets combined into one large bet, which, if it wins, pays off big. The big potential payoff is why players love parlays, but since it takes just one loss to sink the entire bet, bookmakers love them too.
Pick any number of teams and bet them as parlays in every possible combination. Each winning combo is a win for the player. Unlike an actual parlay bet, not all bets must win.
These are individual or team bets inside an event. Prop bets may include the first team to score, which starting running back finishes with the most yards, or how many strikeouts a pitcher records.
Future bets concern events that have yet to take place, like the winner of the World Series, Super Bowl, and Ryder Cup.
Bets placed on events and games already in progress are known as live bets or in-play bets. As the event progresses, the odds and point spread automatically change, giving players new bets to place every few minutes.
West Virginia is one of the smaller states in the nation, ranking just 39th in population and 41st in square mileage. But if you are into sports betting, it has one of the most complete offerings of online sportsbooks in the country.
Ranking sportsbooks isn't an exact science. However, there are certain attributes that a venue must have to be considered one of the best. Options in wagering is a must. Not all bettors want only to bet on American sports. They might also want to be able to bet on Aussie Rules football at two o'clock in the morning.
A great sportsbook must also make banking easy. There need to be multiple deposit options, and withdrawals need to be processed promptly.
Finally, a top sportsbook must offer a bonus for joining. There need to be incentives to register and make a deposit.
Any sportsbook that hits all of these points, and does them well, can be considered one of the best
DraftKings has been active in West Virginia since August 2019. A partner with Penn National Gaming, who owns the Hollywood Casino at Charles Town Races, DraftKings runs the retail sportsbook and has both an online and mobile sportsbook through the Hollywood Casino's license.
DraftKings tops our rankings because there is a huge selection of available sports, a fast and easy app to use, and up to $1,000 in free bets and bonuses. At DraftKings in West Virginia, new customers can get both $500 in free bets and $500 in deposit bonuses.
When it comes to the complete online sportsbook experience, no one is doing it better than DraftKings.
Another of the daily fantasy sports operators that has successfully remade itself into a complete online sportsbook, FanDuel actually made it to the West Virginia online market two days before DraftKings did. FanDuel has been running the retail sportsbook at The Greenbrier since August of 2018, and their online sportsbook - also through The Greenbrier's license - has been active since August 2019.
FanDuel has a great website and mobile app. When it comes to offered sports and wagers, there is almost nothing you can't play. But with only $500 in potential free bets and deposit bonus offers, it comes in just behind DraftKings.
If bonus money isn't that important to you, then FanDuel might be your choice. But since we like the additional free money, FanDuel ranks second for us.
The newest of the online sportsbooks in West Virginia, BetMGM brings with it loads of experience and one of the most iconic brands in gaming. It also has partnerships with the NBA, NHL, and Major League Baseball, making it one of the more unique sportsbooks on the market.
It is online only in West Virginia, operating as one of the skins through The Greenbrier.
With the bonus code: PLAYBONUS, you can get up to $500 in a deposit match bonus. There is also a wide range of available sports, although slightly less than DraftKings. And the app is very good, although newer to the market and not quite as responsive.
BetMGM offers a good sportsbook experience, and, because of who they are as a company, as the industry innovates, so will they. But for our money, we'd go with DraftKings and FanDuel first.
Along with your online and mobile options, this is the list of retails sportsbooks if you prefer to place your bets in person.
Location: Charles Town, WVa
Open past midnight seven days a week, there is 50-feet of wall space that features more than a dozen 80-inch televisions. They also offer individual viewing stations and both teller windows and self-service betting kiosks.
Location: White Sulphur Springs, WVa
America's resort, which has been visited by 27 US presidents, has more than 21 televisions to watch sports from across the world. The FanDuel retail sportsbook offers both betting windows and self-service kiosks.
Location: New Cumberland, WVa
The longtime European sports betting company, William Hill has made a name for itself in the United States in recent years. It runs the retail sportsbook at the Mountaineer Casino. It pairs with the racetrack there to offer a wide variety of sports betting options.
It is highly unlikely that you'll come across bonus offers when you visit a retail sportsbook. Since you don't use an account that can track your betting totals when wagering in person, it just doesn't happen. But when betting online and through one of the legal sportsbooks in West Virginia, you will be offered several possible incentives to attract your business.
One of the easiest ways a sportsbook will attract new business is with a welcome bonus. Often this is in the form of a risk-free bet that only triggers in the event that it loses, but even that can have a lot of value. Be sure to look for these bonuses when choosing an online sportsbook.
Welcome bonuses tend to be for smaller amounts, but when you're looking for a way to quickly add money to your online account, deposit bonuses can be more profitable. It is not uncommon to find deposit bonuses that total up to $500 in free money.
There will be a playthrough requirement - meaning that you'll need to wager the bonus amount a specific number of times before you can withdraw it - but free money is free money. Always read about deposit bonus offers before you make a deposit.
Typically you find loyalty and rewards programs through a casino. It's not really a sportsbook offering, and they're rarely available at a stand-alone sportsbook.
However, if the sportsbook is connected to an online casino site, then there is a chance that you can use a rewards program for both accounts. So always double-check, because if a loyalty program is offered, you don't want to miss out on the free bonuses that come with it.
Current West Virginia sportsbooks, as well as future books, are likely to offer free bets of up to $50 for referring friends as new customers. The referred friend also typically qualifies for a free bet on top of any registration bonuses that they receive.
Customers can also expect promotional bets tied into specific sports, teams, or days of the week. It's also common to find insurance on certain bets - such as cash back on NBA bets that lose even when your team scores 100 points.
Whether you are accessing an online sportsbook through its website or mobile app, signing up for your new account will be easy and user friendly.
The information required for registration is:
You will choose your username and password at the time of registration. If there are any issues with confirming your identification through your address and social security number, you may be asked to submit a utility bill in your name as additional documentation. As a last resort, you may be asked to provide a photo ID.
One of the most important aspects of an online gaming platform is how it processes banking. All of the sportsbooks in West Virginia have secure banking options and accept a wide variety of deposit and withdrawal methods.
West Virginia sportsbooks offer the following deposit options:
Not all sportsbooks will offer a prepaid card, so be sure to check which sportsbooks do. Some credit card companies will treat a payment to a gambling establishment like they treat a cash advance.
Always check with your issuing bank before using your credit card. You'll also find that even though all of the electronic wallet options are available in West Virginia - PayPal, Skrill, Neteller, etc. - not all sportsbooks accept each one. So before setting up an electronic wallet account, please double-check which service you can use.
When able, we always recommend using a method of deposit that can be reversed for quick and easy withdrawal. If you aren't able to do that, most sportsbooks in West Virginia will accept the following means of account withdrawal.
Opting to have a personal check sent to you in the mail will result in several days of delay for processing and mailing. On the other hand, withdrawing funds with eCheck or PayPal will happen with very little delay and won't require any additional information from you.
The West Virginia Lottery Commission has limited sports betting in the state to the five casinos that are allowed to operate legally.
Each of the five casinos with a sports betting license can open one retail sportsbook inside their casino and operate up to three partner online sportsbooks through different skins (or brands).
Since state law only allows five casinos to operate, it can have up to 15 online sportsbooks.
If you are 21 years old and inside the state lines, you can place legal sports wagers. As with real estate, the only thing that matters is location, location, location.
You do not need to be a resident of the state to bet here. Anyone who is of legal age and visiting West Virginia can place bets.
Yes. You do have to declare your sports winnings to the IRS when filling out your yearly tax return. The sportsbooks themselves pay a 10% tax rate on all sports gaming revenue.
More about gambling taxes here.
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