Pennsylvania Sportsbooks

Pennsylvania may not be the first state to offer sports betting. It is the biggest though. The Commonwealth is also a big sports state. Be it pro teams in Philadelphia and Pittsburgh or rooting for one of the many college teams, Pennsylvanians love their sports.

Now they can put their money where their mouth is. Hollywood Casino accepted the state’s first legal bet on Nov. 17. Now, in advance of March Madness, there are eight retail sportsbooks in the Keystone State.

Eventually, there will be online sports betting as well. Once the brick-and-mortar sportsbooks are up and running, PA casinos will launch online betting. You can expect that in the first half of 2019.

Which casinos will have sportsbooks?

So far, seven of the 13 PA casinos have applied for sports betting licenses. They are:

  • Hollywood Casino
  • Harrah’s Philadelphia
  • SugarHouse Casino
  • Rivers Casino
  • Parx Casino
  • Valley Forge Casino
  • Presque Isle Downs

These seven casinos fall into three categories: approved and conditionally approved.

Seven operators have opened properties. Parx Casino also opened betting at two off-track betting parlors, South Philadelphia Turf Club and Valley Forge Turf Club:

  • Hollywood Casino
  • Harrah’s Philadelphia
  • SugarHouse Casino
  • Rivers Casino
  • Parx Casino
  • FanDuel Sportsbook at Valley Forge Casino
  • South Philadelphia Turf Club
  • Valley Forge Turf Club

Conditional approval means the PA Gaming Control Board (PGCB) approved their applications, but they essentially have a checklist of things they need to do, including a mandatory testing period, before they can go live. Presque Isle Downs is conditionally approved and expects to launch sometime in March.

The lowdown on sports betting law

Do I have to live in Pennsylvania to bet?

No. All you have to do is be in the state. Online betting apps use geolocation technology to make sure you are within state lines when you bet. Though you can cash out your account from a different state, you can’t place bets.

How old do I have to be?

You must be 21 years and older; the same age for casino gaming.

Is it hard to get money on a PA online betting app?

Pennsylvania actually has not finalized its regulations for online sports betting yet, but there are two possible scenarios. In one, you will need to go, in-person, to the casino and verify your identity.

If Pennsylvania follows New Jersey’s lead, you will be able to open an account on your phone or computer and skip the casino visit altogether.

What sports can you bet on? College? High School?

Pennsylvania law allows for bets on college games. You can even bet on Pennsylvania teams and games taking place in Pennsylvania. In addition to the major American sports, sportsbooks will likely also offer popular international sports, like soccer.

One thing you definitely won’t be betting on is high school sports, though.