Sports Betting in Pennsylvania at a Glance
Pennsylvania was one of the earliest states to embrace legal sports betting. Retail sports betting began in 2018 with online bets following in the summer of 2019.
Exceptionally high licensing fees and taxes have stifled growth in the emerging market, but bettors have several reputable sportsbooks to choose from whether they prefer to bet in-person or online.
According to the Pennsylvania Gaming Control Board, sportsbooks took in over $1.5 billion in bets during 2019 – 2020. This makes it the third-largest sports betting market in the country, behind just Nevada and New Jersey.
Even with a relatively limited number of online operators, most of the action is happening online. In the 2019 – 2020 fiscal year, the gaming board reports that more than 85% of the overall sports betting handle was generated online.
This is no surprise considering the convenience of wagering from wherever you please. Of the hundreds of online sportsbooks around the word we have reviewed, the legal options available in Pennsylvania are among the best.
The Best Pennsylvania Sports Betting Sites:
- FOX Bet
Feel confident you will find good odds and a great overall experience by choosing from the online sportsbooks and betting apps featured here.
These operators also offer excellent mobile platforms, with dedicated betting apps that allow you to keep up with the odds and place wagers on the go.
Latest PA Sports Betting News
There’s still plenty of news to cover even though Pennsylvania was one of the first states to legalize sports betting.
SportsBettingDime.com is following all of the latest updates as the legal sports betting market in Pennsylvania continues to evolve. Check this page to stay up to date with latest PA sports betting news.
February 22, 2021: Pennsylvania hit $615.3 million in total betting handle through the month of January 2021. This marked the first time Pennsylvania surpassed $600 million in sports betting volume.
January 19, 2021: The PA Gaming Control Board has released their 2020 year-end report, confirming a 125% year-over-year increase in sports betting revenue compared with 2019. The Gaming Board has highlighted the continued growth of the online sports betting market as a saving grace for the state’s gaming revenues last year, which were heavily affected by COVID-related closures of Pennsylvania casinos.
PA sports betting revenue also saw a resurgence in December after a small drop in November. Pennsylvania casinos and online operators handled nearly $550 million in wagers last month, setting a new record for sports wagering revenue in the state.
December 17, 2020: Reported betting volume in Pennsylvania saw a dip in November 2020, falling 6.4% for a total handle of $491.9 million. The NFL schedule was the most likely cause for this decrease, as the Philadelphia Eagles had a bye week, and the Pittsburgh Steelers game against the Baltimore Ravens was delayed into December.
November 18, 2020: Pennsylvania online and retail sportsbooks surpassed $500 million in betting volume through October 2020. The $525.8 million total helped Pennsylvania set a betting record, representing a 118% percent increase year-over-year.
October 16, 2020: The Pennsylvania Gaming Control Board reported a $462.8 million betting handle in September 2020. September’s betting volume was 27% higher than the previous month, a clear indicator that Pennsylvania’s sports betting market is growing steadily.
Best Pennsylvania Betting Apps
The ability to bet remotely from your mobile device is one of the best things about Pennsylvania’s sports betting regulations. You can bet from a cell phone or tablet anywhere in the state.
Let’s face it – you use your cell phone to watch sports, read about sports, and talk about sports. It’s not super convenient to have your wagering ability limited to your computer, or worse, only be able to bet in-person at casinos and racetracks.
Every online sportsbook in the Keystone State has developed a well-designed betting app so you can place wagers with ultimate flexibility and convenience. The two largest operators – DraftKings and FanDuel – cut their teeth as daily fantasy sports apps primarily targeting mobile users.
Whichever PA betting app you choose to bet with, expect a modern interface that makes it easy to navigate the odds and accurately complete your bet slip. Note that some apps are specific to Pennsylvania, while others can be used in other legal online betting states such as New Jersey.
Here are the best Pennsylvania betting apps available today:
All the sportsbooks featured here allow you to complete the registration and account verification processes directly from the app. You can also make mobile deposits and withdrawals, meaning you don’t ever have to rely on computer access to bet on sports in Pennsylvania.
Each of these apps is available for both Apple and Android users. Follow the links above to get started.
Best Pennsylvania Sports Betting Bonuses & Promos
Online sportsbooks in Pennsylvania are constantly offering daily and weekly promotions that can bolster your bankroll. You don’t have to be a PA resident, but you must be physically within state boundaries to take advantage of the Pennsylvania sports betting bonuses.
These promos often take the form of daily boosted odds, which offer a better potential payout on select events. Other promos include free bet credits or contests.
It’s worth checking in with your favorite PA sportsbook to see the boosted odds on a daily basis. New deals are constantly popping up!
Pennsylvania Sportsbook Sign Up Bonuses
The most valuable sports betting bonuses are nearly always sign up offers to entice new bettors. Every sportsbook and betting app featured here offers a significant welcome bonus worth hundreds or even $1,000.
Obviously, these Pennsylvania sports betting promos can get you started with a significantly larger bankroll.
Here are the best sports betting sign up bonuses and welcome offers for Pennsylvania:
|Betting Site||Pennsylvania Bonus||Get Started|
|FanDuel||$1,000 Risk Free Bet||Bet Now|
|DraftKings||$1,000 Risk Free Bets/Deposit Match||Bet Now|
|FOX Bet||$1,000 Risk Free Bet/Deposit Bonus||Bet Now|
|BetMGM||$500 Risk Free Bet||Bet Now|
|Caesars||$500 Matched Free Bet||Bet Now|
While you do not want to miss out on these potentially lucrative sign up offers, you do want to ensure the sportsbook you register with is legal. In Pennsylvania, this means it must be licensed by the Pennsylvania Gaming Control Board.
Let’s take a closer look at the laws you need to be aware of when it comes to sports betting in Pennsylvania safely and legally.
Where to Bet Legally in Pennsylvania
Pennsylvania was one of the first states to embrace legal sports betting, and the rules are certainly more permissive than in many states that followed. The state was wise to allow both retail and fully remote online sports betting, but the rules and regulations surrounding online gambling in the state are not perfect.
Pennsylvania is the most expensive state for sportsbook operators in terms of both initial licensing and ongoing taxation. This makes for a less diverse market, fewer promotions, and ultimately higher prices (vig) for bettors.
Sports betting in Pennsylvania is legal under Pennsylvania Consolidated Statutes, Title 4, Chapter 13c. The law is extensive, but we’ve summarized the key info below.
Online Sports Betting in Pennsylvania
Pennsylvania sports betting rules provide easy access to legal online sportsbooks and mobile betting apps. Here’s what you need to know about betting online in the Keystone State.
Remote Registration Allowed
Online betting in the state is fully remote, which means bettors in Pennsylvania do not have to visit a casino or retail sportsbook to verify their account. Sign up, fund your account, and place bets without ever leaving the comfort of your home or favorite sports bar.
Every legal online sportsbook in the state must confirm your location using approved software before accepting your online wagers. If using a betting app, the location services on your device will work. If betting from a computer, you’ll likely need to download geolocation software directly from your sportsbook.
Note that you do not need to live in Pennsylvania to create an account and bet on sports, you only need to be physically within state lines to place wagers. Conversely, PA residents cannot use their PA betting accounts to bet online from outside the state.
Online Sports Betting Licenses
Here’s where Pennsylvania’s sports betting laws become less favorable – sports betting licenses are only issued to operators with existing “slot machine licenses”, which in practice means every potential online operator must partner with an existing casino to become licensed.
While such an arrangement is common in other states that allow online betting, Pennsylvania’s $10 million initial licensing fee is a major barrier to entry. This is coupled with a staggering 36% tax on all revenue.
The licensing and tax situation is a real double whammy. Many operators have foregone the Pennsylvania online gaming market entirely. That said, there are still plenty of highly-rated options to choose from.
Here are the current licenses for online sports betting in the state:
|License Holder||Online Betting Partner(s)|
|Hollywood Casino||Hollywood Casino|
|Mount Airy||FOX Bet|
|Presque Isle Downs||Currently None|
|Meadows Casino & Racetrack||DraftKings|
|Mohegan Sun Pocono||Unibet|
|Valley Forge Casino||FanDuel|
|Valley Forge Race & Sportsbook||Currently None|
Pennsylvania Retail Sportsbooks
We’re big advocates of online sports betting. It’s hard to beat the convenience of wagering from anywhere at any time.
That said, visiting a retail sportsbook or betting lounge is an experience all its own. Especially on a day with the year’s biggest sporting events, the atmosphere is electric. Arrive early to stake claim to your armchair for the day and soak in the excitement.
As mentioned above, many casinos with retail sportsbooks are partnered with online operators. In some cases, you may be able to use the funds from your online account to place wagers at these retail partners.
Here are all the places you can bet on sports in-person in Pennsylvania:
- Harrah’s Philadelphia
- Hollywood Casino
- Rivers Casino Philadelphia (formerly Sugarhouse Casino)
- Rivers Casino Pittsburgh
- Meadows Casino & Racetrack
- Mohegan Sun Pocono
- Mount Airy Casino
- Oaks Race & Sportsbook (Valley Forge)
- Parx Casino & Racing Track
- Presque Isle Downs
- South Philly Turf Club
- Valley Forge Casino
These retail sportsbook locations are spread throughout the state, meaning you’re likely within an hour’s drive of a brick and mortar sportsbook anywhere in Pennsylvania. From Greater Philadelphia and Pittsburgh, north to the Poconos or Erie, there’s a location ready to take your action.
Note that casinos can open off-track betting locations separate from the sportsbooks located on the casino floor. In some cases, these retail betting shops can be located in other cities entirely, and they do not require a separate license or additional licensing fees.
The map/table below indicates the hours and address for each of these retail sportsbook locations:
Find the full address, hours of operation, and name of the sportsbook at each PA retail location below.
|Harrah’s Philadelphia||The Book at Harrah’s||777 Harrah’s Blvd, Chester, PA, 19013||Monday – Friday: 11 am to close
Saturday & Sunday: 10 am to close
Sunday: 10am to 11:30pm
|Hollywood Casino at Penn National Racecourse||Hollywood Casino||777 Hollywood Blvd, Grantville, PA, 17028||Daily: 12pm – 8pm|
|Rivers Casino Philadelphia||BetRivers Sportsbook||1080 N. Delaware Ave, Philadelphia, PA, 19125||Monday – Friday: 10am to 1am
Saturday: 7am to 1am Sunday: 8am to 1am
|Rivers Casino Pittsburgh||BetRivers Sportsbook||777 Casino Dr
Pittsburgh, PA, 15212
|Monday – Thursday: 10 am to 12am
Friday & Saturday: 10am to 2am
Sunday: 9am to 12am
|Meadows Casino & Racetrack||The Sportsbook at Meadows||210 Racetrack Road, Washington, PA, 15301||Daily: 10am to 12am|
|Mohegan Sun Pocono||Unibet Sportsbook||1280 Highway 315, Wilkes-Barre, PA, 18702||Daily: 11am to 12am|
|Mount Airy Casino||The Sports Book||312 Woodland Road, Mount Pocono, PA, 18344||Monday – Friday: 2pm to 10pm
Saturday: 10am to 12am
Sunday: 10am to 10pm
|Oaks Race & Sportsbook (Affiliated with Parx Casino)||Valley Forge Race & Sportsbook||600 Cresson Avenue, Oaks Corporate Center, Oaks, PA, 19456||Monday – Thursday: 12pm to 11pm
Friday: 12pm to 12am
Saturday: 10am to 12am
Sunday: 10am to 11pm
|Parx Casino||Parx Casino Sportsbook||2999 Street Road, Bensalem, PA, 19020||Monday – Thursday: 12pm to 11pm
Friday: 12pm to 12am
Saturday: 10am to 12am
Sunday: 10am to 11pm
|Presque Isle Downs||BetAmerica Sportsbook||8199 Perry Hwy,
Erie, PA, 16509
|South Philadelphia Race & Sportsbook (Affiliated with Parx Casino)||South Philly Turf Club||700 Packer Ave, Philadelphia, PA, 19148||Monday – Thursday: 12pm to 11pm
Friday: 12pm to 12am
Saturday: 10am to 12am
Sunday: 10am to 11pm
|Valley Forge Casino||FanDuel Sportsbook||1160 First Ave, King of Prussia, PA, 19406||Monday – Thursday: 10am to 12am
Friday: 10am to 1am
Saturday: 9am to 1am
Sunday: 9am to 12am
*Hours are subject to change due to COVID-19
Pennsylvania Sports Betting Rules & Restrictions
Pennsylvania has been friendly to sports bettors and sportsbook operators in its embrace of both online and retail wagering. However, there are several key rules and restrictions bettors need to be aware of.
Pennsylvania is strict in terms of the type of wagers that legal sportsbooks in the state can offer. Compared to neighboring New Jersey, you can expect to see fewer props and specials on offer because of these regulations.
There are also some key rules regarding who can bet on sports in the Keystone State.
All sports betting regulations in Pennsylvania are administered by the Pennsylvania Gaming Control Board and enforced by the Pennsylvania State Police.
Who Is Allowed to Bet on Sports in Pennsylvania?
Most adults in the state are allowed to bet on sports, with a few notable exceptions.
You Must Be At Least 21 Years of Age
Whether betting online or at a casino, you need to be 21 years or older to bet on sports in Pennsylvania. Online sportsbooks will always verify your identity before allowing you to place any wagers, and government-issued ID must be presented when entering any retail gambling establishment.
Despite these measures, some people (unsuccessfully) try to get around the age restrictions. The state added ten people to its involuntary exclusion list in 2019 for underage gambling or aiding underage gambling.
You Must Be Physically Located in Pennsylvania
You must be physically present within state boundaries to place an online wager with legal sportsbooks licensed in New Jersey.
If using a betting app, the sportsbook will verify your location using the integrated location services on your device.
If you choose to use a laptop or desktop computer, you’ll need to download approved geo-comply software provided directly by your online sportsbook of choice.
You Must Have a Clean Criminal Record
Anyone who has been convicted of a crime for which the punishment may include one or more years in prison is excluded from all gaming in the state of Pennsylvania. This includes online betting, with excluded persons flagged during the account verification process.
Which Events Can I Bet on in Pennsylvania?
Pennsylvania allows wagering on virtually all sporting events, including college sports and other events such as the Olympics. However, the options are more limited than in most other states with legal online betting.
This is because Pennsylvania does not allow wagering on any proposition that is not directly tied to the outcome of a sporting event. This is defined under Act 42 of Pennsylvania’s gambling expansion laws:
The business of accepting wagers on sporting events or on the individual performance statistics of athletes in a sporting event or combination of sporting events by any system or method of wagering, including over the Internet through websites and mobile applications.
Let’s take a closer look at what this means for the types of wager that can be offered.
No Entertainment or Political Betting
Betting on politics or major entertainment events like the Oscars and Grammys has long been popular in the prop section of offshore sportsbooks.
As sports betting has been legalized in the US, some states (such as New Jersey) have allowed wagers on some entertainment events, with many more expected to do so in the coming years. Unfortunately, the Pennsylvania sports betting laws prevent operators from offering any such wagers.
Betting on political outcomes falls into the same category, though at this time there are no legal markets in the United States that allow such propositions.
No eSports Betting
While eSports are exploding in popularity as organized professional leagues that set up shop in major markets around the globe, Pennsylvania regulators do not recognize these competitions are professional sporting events.
As such, eSports betting is not currently allowed in the state.
No Betting on Draft Day or Trades
Even some prop wagers that are tangentially related to sports are not allowed in the state. Bettors in PA cannot wager on any professional league draft, nor on the likelihood of their favorite players to be traded to a certain team.
What’s the reasoning here? Even though a player’s draft or trade prospects are undeniably linked to their performance in competition, these events are not directly related to a specific sporting event in any sort of quantifiable fashion.
As such, you’ll need to drive to New Jersey to bet on the NFL Draft and similar events.
You CAN Bet on Player Awards but CANNOT Bet on Coaching Awards
Want to bet on NBA Rookie of the Year or NFL MVP? No problem.
Want to back Doug Peterson for Coach of the Year while you’re at it? You’ll have no such luck at a legal PA sportsbook.
Player awards are determined based on “individual performance statistics of athletes” (at least in theory), so they remain fair game. Coaching awards, on the other hand, are a step too removed from player and team stats in the eyes of the Gaming Control Board.
You Can Bet on All College Sporting Events
College sports betting is one area where Pennsylvania sports betting rules are more permissive than in many other states.
Regulations allow wagering on any college sporting event, including those that take place in the state or involve athletes or teams representing colleges and universities located in PA.
This is a major difference with neighboring New Jersey, which does not allow betting on hometown college teams nor any event held within state lines.
What Types of Wagers Are Allowed on these Events?
While somewhat conservative in terms of the events that can be wagered on, Pennsylvania does not restrict the type of wagers that can be placed.
This means the door is open to all the traditional sports bets you’re used to, and more forms like exchange betting could become part of the landscape in the future.
At a minimum, expect to see the following options at Pennsylvania sportsbooks and betting apps:
- Straight bets (Moneyline, Spread, O/U)
- Parlays & Accumulators
- Pleasers & Teasers
- Player & Championship Futures
- Live Betting
- Props & Exotics
To get specific, the Gaming Control Board stipulates that “The term (sports betting) includes, but is not limited to, exchange wagering, parlays, over-under, moneyline, pools and straight bets.”
This guidance is to be interpreted widely, meaning nothing remains off the table so long as it is tied directly to on-field athletic performance.
Pennsylvania Sports Betting FAQs
Is Sports Betting Legal in PA?
Yes. Sports betting has been legal in Pennsylvania both online and at retail locations since 2018.
How Do I Bet Online in Pennsylvania?
All you need to do is register with a legal online sportsbook or betting app such as FanDuel or DraftKings. The options outlined on this page are great places to start.
Can I Gamble in Pennsylvania If I Live Elsewhere?
Yes. You need to be physically present in the state when placing online wagers, but your residency is not considered.
What Happened to SugarHouse Casino?
SugarHouse was acquired and rebranded as Rivers Philadelphia, pairing the casino with the Rivers Pittsburgh location located in Western PA.
Local Teams Worth Betting On
Once you’ve selected the highly-rated PA sportsbook that best fits your needs, it’s time to begin thinking about placing some wagers.
First things first – you should always bet with your head, not with your heart. Trends, historical ROI, and simple on-field performance should matter more to you than team loyalty.
That said, we understand that fans want to back their favorite teams.
- Philadelphia Eagles
- Pittsburgh Steelers
- Philadelphia 76ers
- Philadelphia Flyers
- Pittsburgh Penguins
- Philadelphia Phillies
- Pittsburgh Pirates
Sports Betting Dime is here to provide the data and analysis you need to bet confidently and intelligently. Visit us before you bet for tools and editorial coverage you can quickly use to gauge the betting value of your favorite teams.
Pennsylvania Sports Betting History
Pennsylvania has always played an outsized role in American history. It’s the birthplace of the US constitution, the site of George Washington’s famous encampment at Valley Forge, and the turning point of the Civil War at Gettysburg.
The state has always been on the cusp of changes in American society, and the embrace of legal sports betting is a continuation of this legacy. The significance of two legal sportsbooks in Valley Forge today is certainly not lost on those who’ve long advocated for proper regulation and legalization of the industry.
While betting on sports underground has long been a part of Pennsylvania’s rabid sports culture, the path to today’s legal environment happened relatively quickly.
Here are the key moments in Pennsylvania sports betting history:
1993: State legislators propose the introduction of riverboat gambling to raise revenue for transportation improvements and other key state priorities.
1994: Newly elected Governor, Tom Ridge, is confident the public shares his support for riverboat gambling. He demands the proposal be put to the voters via referendum. The referendums fail, and the momentum around gaming on the state’s waterways comes to a halt.
1999: The State House approves a bill to expand gaming in Pennsylvania. The State Senate refuses to adopt the legislation, again stopping legal gambling dead in its tracks.
2004: Pennsylvania legislators pass Act 71, which legalizes slot machines at 14 locations and creates the Pennsylvania Gaming Control Board. The bill opens the door for casinos to open across the state.
September 2015: State Representative Rick Kotik introduces a bill to allow sports betting at the state’s existing casinos.
October 2017: The state legislature passes HB 271, which legalizes online gambling in the state and creates a framework for legal sports betting. Governor Tom Wolf signs the bill into law, but sports betting remains illegal under federal law at the time, making it impossible for regulated sportsbooks to open in the state.
May 2018: The United States Supreme Court overturns the Professional and Amateur Sports Protection Act (PASPA), eliminating the federal ban on sports betting. As a result, the sports betting stipulations in HB 271 immediately take effect, and casinos and racetracks in PA are free to offer sports betting online and in-person.
November 2018: The first legal sports bet in PA is placed at Hollywood Casino.
Find the Best Sportsbooks for Pennsylvania
No matter your experience level, Sports Betting Dime is here to help you bet with confidence every time. We’ve compiled an extensive series of betting guides that can help everyone from total beginners to established sharps up their game.
Our Sports Betting 101 section covers the basics, while our How to Bet on Sports section breaks things down with sport-specific advice. From there, you can pick up more advanced betting systems with our comprehensive articles on Sports Betting Strategy.
If you’re looking to bet on sports elsewhere, check out our state-by-state legal tracker.