D.C. Online Sports Betting in 2022
Sports Betting in D.C.: Legal in 2022
Are you exploring sports betting possibilities in the District of Columbia? The good news for all bettors is that the state legalized sports wagering in 2019. Although retail and online betting has been made available, there are many specifics related to wagering on sports in Washington, D.C. Our team did research, and this page will bring all necessary information about sports betting in D.C. Stay tuned as we are going to guide you through legal Washington D.C. sports betting.
Land-based Betting Operators & Racetracks in D.C. 2022
Washington D.C. sports betting was approved in May 2019 by D.C. City Council via the B22-0944 bill. According to B22-0944, operators can apply for two available licenses – Class A and Class B. Both permissions allow companies to operate land-based betting, and both have their set of criteria. The D.C. Lotter regulates the market and grants licenses if the applicants meet all requirements.
The Class A license is available for retail sportsbooks in the major sports venues in Washington, D.C. Therefore, betting operators with Class A permission can operate in major arenas, such as:
- Capital One Arena
- Audi Field
- Nationals Park
- Elizabeths East Entertainment and Sports Arena
Caesars Sportsbook was the first retail sportsbook in Washington, D.C., operating its business from Capital One Arena. Despite there is no hard cap on the number of land-based betting operators, the list is still pretty short. But there are a lot of sportsbooks coming: Audi Field should host FanDuel, while BetMGM should open its business at Nationals Park.
When we speak about the Class B licenses, they are available to independent sportsbooks hosted in restaurants and bars. Although there are several applicants, no Class B license has been granted yet. Only the gentlemen’s club Cloakroom D.C. and the bar Grand Central D.C. are under review from those who applied.
Online Betting in D.C. 2022
The list of online sportsbooks in D.C. is not so extensive as in some other states, as there are only 3 licensed online betting operators. Besides those, another couple of sportsbooks are in the process of obtaining the license. The B22-0944 bill also regulates the D.C. online betting licenses, also categorized in Class A and Class B. However, online betting in D.C. is slightly different from other states, so let’s dip into more detail.
Online betting in D.C. is geofenced, meaning that you can place your bets only if you are located in a specific area. D.C. online sportsbooks that operate under the Class A license enable the bettors to place their wagers if they are located in a two-block radius of the corresponding retail venue. On the other hand, punters that use a Class B licensed online sportsbook can bet online only if they are located at the property of the corresponding land-based bookmaker.
However, GambetDC doesn’t fall under these restrictions. Since D.C. Lottery launched it, bettors can enjoy sports betting within the Washington D.C. borders. On the other hand, the odds and lines you can find in this sportsbook are by far less generous than the ones offered by other bookies in D.C. and other states.
Besides Gambet DC, William Hill also operates as the online sportsbook in Washington D.C. This worldwide-known bookmaker can offer its online services in a two-block radius from Capital One Arena, as it has the Class A license.
Mobile Sports Betting in D.C. 2022
Similar to online wagering, mobile sports betting also falls under geofencing restrictions. Of course, GambetDC still remains the most accessible D.C. sports betting app, as punters can access it from anywhere within the Washington, D.C. territory. Besides Gambet DC, the William Hill sports betting app is also available, but the punters can place their wagers only if they are located near Capital One Arena. You can check the list of online sportsbooks above to see which ones are available as well.
You must be wondering how the wagering availability can be limited just to two blocks away from the land-based sportsbook? The geolocation verification software checks your exact location and ensures that you are in the allowed area for placing your bets. Every punter is required to enable the sportsbook’s website to know the location as proof that it is in the “buffer area.”
Bettors can also consult the Office of Lottery and Gaming maps to find the “buffer areas” marked in blue. Besides the Capital One Arena area, the map shows the potential allowed areas when the sportsbooks open their businesses in other Class A venues.
D.C. Betting Site List: Legal Sportsbooks in 2022
|BetMGM||Borgata Hotel Casino & Spa|
|Caesars Sportsbook||Bally's Atlantic City|
Favorite Sports & Teams in D.C.
Since Washington D.C. is the US capital, it is natural that it hosts many well-known professional teams from major sports. We are about to mention the most notable teams which found their home in Washington D.C.
As the most popular sport in the country, football doesn’t leave the people in Washington D.C immune as well. It is also the most popular sport to wager on, and the Super Bowl is the major sporting event in the US. Washington D.C. is the home of the NFL side Washington Football Team, formerly known as Redskins. However, the nickname was retired in 2020, and the new mascot will be announced in 2022.
D.C. has also been a home of the NBA side Washington Wizards. The team’s journey started in 1961 as Chicago packers, but just two years later, they moved to Baltimore and became Bullets. Later on, the team adopted Washington as its name and won the NBA title in 1978. Since the team’s nickname had a violent connotation, the owner Abe Pollin changed the mascot, and they became Washington Wizards.
Washington has a very successful representative in NHL, although ice hockey probably enjoys the lowest popularity of the four major sports. The Capitals lifted the Stanley Cup in the 2017/18 season, while they were conference champions on two occasions. It’s pretty easy to bet on NHL as they play their home matches at Capital One Arena, and since William Hill has its retail sportsbook and online betting app available there.
We shouldn’t skip soccer, although it’s not the most popular sport in the US. DC United is the 1998 CONCACAF Champions League winner and an MLS Cup winner on four occasions. Audi Field is the team’s home, and we might see FanDuel opening their business in this facility soon.
What you Can and Can’t Bet on in D.C.
The list of sports and events that you can bet on in D.C. is quite extensive. However, there are some restrictions in terms of college and high-school betting. According to the DC Municipal Regulation Section 30-2127, punters cannot place their bets on these types of events:
- College games that take place in D.C.
- College games where District of Columbia college or university is a participant
- College games where the operator knows that a coach or player placed a bet
- College games not involving D.C. teams
- Amateur events, excluding the Olympics
- All high school sports events
On the other hand, the list of professional sports available for betting should meet all your preferences. Besides placing wagers on all major sports, punters can back their favorite teams or players in sports like Lacrosse, Darts, Cricket, or Cycling.
However, eSports doesn’t enter this list yet, including betting on political elections and award ceremonies.
Gambling in D.C.: Since when is it legal to Bet
Sports betting has always been present in the US, and the first forms of it go back to the 18th century. Washington D.C., as the capital, had a significant influence on sports wagering in the US. All laws and acts that allowed or prohibited sports betting flowed from here, as D.C. was the starting point for all initiatives.
Until the 1960s, sports betting was widespread across the US states. However, gambling slid into organized crime and became great trouble for the government. Therefore, the authorities enacted the Wire Act of 1961 that was designed to prevent gamblers and bookies from arranging bets over the phone and other electronic communication channels. The Wire Act of 1961 is still in place, which is the primary reason why sports betting is regulated on the state level.
The main purpose of the Wire Act was to prevent criminal activities in gambling. The fight against illegal activities in sports betting didn’t stop there, as the Professional and Amateur Sports Protection Act (PASPA) was set in place in 1992. This act banned sports betting in any state not grandfathered, which made Nevada monopolize the legal sports wagering in the US.
However, the US Supreme Court ended PASPA in 2018 and opened doors to legalizing sports betting as it became a question for each state.
Although the district is not a state itself, it can also enact all regulations related to sports betting within the district area. The US capital also started to put efforts into enabling sports betting D.C., which was finally legalized thanks to the B22-0944 bill.
Gambling Guide: D.C. Online Betting
Yes, sports betting is legal in Washington D.C. Punters that are 18 or older can place their bets in land-based and online sportsbooks. However, it has unique specifics, and you should familiarize yourself with them before starting to place your wagers.
Currently, 3 operators launched their online sportsbooks in D.C. GambetDC is the major sportsbook in D.C. as it is DC Lottery’s official sports betting site. Punters can also place their online bets at William Hill, but only if they are within a two-block range from Capital One Arena, where this operator has its retail shop.
Legal Washington D.C. sports betting was launched in May 2019. After the US Supreme Court revoked PASPA in 2018, six council members supported the B22-0944 bill that addresses sports betting legislation in D.C. Although the bill was signed in February 2019, it needed to wait for three more months for Congress approval to take place in May finally.
There are two D.C. sports betting apps available for bettors. With the GambetDC app, punters can place their wagers from any location within Washington D.C. On the other hand, those who use the William Hill betting app can make their bets only if located within two blocks from Capital One Arena. This is due to geofencing regulations that came along with the B22-0944 bill.
Since there are no casinos in D.C. as that type of gambling is still illegal, the jurisdiction of regulating sports betting activities is assigned to the DC Lottery. This regulatory body acts as a gambling commission, issues licenses, and oversees charitable bingo across the district.
Although wagering on professional sports is widely available, there are some restrictions related to college and high school sports and amateur events. Bettors cannot place their wagers on college games that take place in D.C. or involve D.C. teams. Also, all high school games are unavailable for betting, as well as amateur events, except for the Olympics.
Yes, it is 100% safe to bet with legal D.C. bookmakers. As there are only two operators, and the DC Lottery directly launches one, you can rest assured that you’ll enjoy the professional service from both sportsbooks. Bookmakers need to follow the regulations strictly in order to comply with all licensing criteria.
Besides sports betting, the lottery is another popular form of gambling in D.C. Gambling in land-based and online casinos is illegal, as well as horse racing and land-based poker. Online poker and daily fantasy sports are still not fully regulated, so we can consider them falling into a gray area.
Yes, online betting is available only if you are located within the borders of the district. This is the case if you use the GambetDC app for placing your bets. Otherwise, you need to be within a two-block radius of the corresponding land-based sportsbook to enjoy placing wagers on your favorite teams or players.
Punters can enjoy all typical types of bets, whether they place them in retail venues or online. You can find points spread, moneylines, total, parlays, props, and futures offered by both bookmakers. Although the number of sportsbooks in Washington D.C. is still limited, it is not the case with the available types of bets.