California is home to American sports.
The state has a population bigger than some countries, so it’s no surprise you can find multiple sports teams here, whether it be the iconic Los Angeles Lakers, the successful Golden State Warriors, or the World Series winners Los Angeles Dodgers.
Despite all that, sports betting isn’t completely legal in California, which is a real shame. The revenues from the massive amounts of betting that would be taking place in California could fund public infrastructure and other beneficial ventures. Governors – consider it! We’ll give you that advice for free.
So, how can you, a Californian, safely bet online? This article will give you the rundown on everything you’ll need to know. Find out which sportsbooks are best for you, which casinos would be best to visit, and what the future of California sports betting will look like.
7 Best Online Betting Sites in California
- Bovada – Best all-around sportsbook
- MyBookie – Best for betting on the NFL
- BetOnline – New sportsbook in CA
- BetNow – Best runner-up sportsbook
- Intertops – Includes a casino and poker room
1. Bovada – Best Sportsbook in California Overall
Bovada is perhaps the biggest U.S. sportsbook out there today. They provide a generous welcome bonus that will keep your account bonus looking large and ready for betting on the insane amount of California teams there are. Bovada is great for newcomers as well as veterans due to its easy to use website and clean layout. Not only that, but the odds they provide their players with are competitive and excellent to win big. When it comes to sportsbooks, Bovada is definitely one of the best out there.
Bonus: 50% welcome bonus up to $250 (there’s also a Bitcoin bonus)
- Awesome, fast payout and cashier service
- Low rollover on their welcome bonus, making it valuable and lucrative
- Regular promotions and events during certain sporting seasons
2. MyBookie – Best for Betting on NFL Games in CA
MyBookie is a sportsbook that is rising up the ranks of players’ personal favorites. It’s been gaining a good reputation for its fast payout times and great odds on American sports. Not only that, but they have great seasonal events and offers on certain sports that you can engage in. If you like the football season, you can expect to see some nice offers coming your way. Admittedly, MyBookie received many complaints in the early days, but they have since significantly improved their management and have become a reputable and trustworthy sportsbook for Californians.
Bonus: 100% welcome bonus up to $1,000
- Large sign-up bonus
- Cryptocurrency supported
- Easy to use mobile betting platform
At BetOnline, you can bet on almost anything you want. You’ll never be bored on the platform as they provide their customers with so much. You’ll almost always have a promotion or offer you can cash out on or engage with, and in the downtimes between your bets, you can always just hop onto their online casino and play there. Their sports markets are diverse, and the odds are competitive, so you’ll always be sure to get the best bang for your buck.
Bonus: 50% welcome bonus up to $1,000
- A ton of great bonuses and promotions
- Cryptocurrency supported
- Operating since 2004, making it one of the older U.S. online sportsbooks
BetNow was founded in 2015 and is one of the newer sportsbooks on this list, but that doesn’t mean they’re inferior in quality in any way. Their interface is modern and catered to a more modern audience, and their branding also reflects that. Their live betting platform is amazing for those looking for high-adrenaline live betting moments. It is always responsive and will not let you down by glitching or slowing down.
Bonus: 100% welcome bonus up to $1,000
- Offers players a wide array of options for depositing and withdrawing
- Focuses on American sports
- Their live betting interface is responsive and easy to use
Bet365 has been around since a lot of young adults have been born. It was founded in 1994 and is definitely considered one of the ancient titans of the sports betting world. Although the website is old, it certainly doesn’t feel like it. Everything feels fresh, modern, and updated, creating a smooth and seamless experience for all of its players. You can sign up, enjoy the betting and casino games, and feel right at home.
Bonus: 100% welcome bonus up to $2,500
- Generous bonus offerings
- Great casino to pair with the sportsbook
- Awesome eSports odds
XBet is also one of the newer sportsbooks as they were founded in 2014. With most new sportsbooks, there are a few issues they need to sort out as they figure themselves out, but XBet has quickly solidified itself as one of the best in the industry in such a short time. They have such a vast variety of odds and markets to bet on to keep their customers satisfied.
Bonus: 100% welcome bonus up to $300
- Improved customer satisfaction rating
- Lightning-fast customer support service
- Vibrant and exciting interface and platform
Intertops has been around since 1996 and is one of the most unique sportsbooks in the fact that they have almost no complaints against them. There are no complaints of the sportsbook not paying out winnings, which is truly a remarkable feat. Not only that, but they provide excellent odds for American sports, making Intertops a great destination for new bettors and veterans alike.
Bonus: 50% welcome bonus up to $200
- Ancient sportsbook with solid reviews
- Year-round promotions and offers on multiple sports
- No complaints of no-pay
California Sports Betting FAQ
Is Daily Fantasy Sports Available in California?
How can I bet on Sports in California?
Current Sports Betting Situation in California
It is bleak for the Golden State in terms of legalizing sports betting. Currently, the only way to engage in gambling of any kind is in Native American Indian tribal casinos, and most of the time, they are out of the metropolitan areas and include resorts and hotels to put a facade over the casinos and gambling. It truly is a shame that gambling sites aren’t legal in the state, and constant legal battles make it look even bleaker.
Sen. Bill Dodd (D) and Sen. Adam Gray (D) have both retracted their bills, which would have raised significant tax revenue for the state. It is a shame that in-fighting and greed have a stranglehold over an industry that would provide entertainment value for the consumer.
Currently, you can bet on horse racing and engage in fantasy sports, though. That can tide gamblers over for a while until sports betting is fully legalized.
Physical Sportsbooks in California
Harrah’s Resort Southern California
Harrah’s Resort is a tribal casino that is operated by Caesars Entertainment and has been around since 2004. The thing about Harrah’s is that not only is it a great casino with a boatload of slots, table games, and sports to bet on, it’s an awe-inspiring resort hotel with a golf course, restaurants, and activities. If you stay here, it’s not possible you’ll get bored. There’s so much to do at all times that you won’t be here just to engage in sports betting.
Address: 777 S Resort Dr, Valley Center, CA 92082
Pechanga Resort & Casino
Pechanga Resort & Casino is another massive complex that totals 188,000 sq ft. and has a whole array of amenities that will keep you entertained forever. Pechanga is one of the tribal casinos in California and has been around since 2002, and is also the biggest casino in the state. This building is a landmark in the region and a hotspot for all those who want to be betting on sports, gambling at the tables, or socializing with friends.
Address: 45000 Pechanga Pkwy, Temecula, CA 92592
San Manuel Indian Bingo and Casino
San Manuel is another one of the tribal casinos in the region, and they take their bingo seriously. They hold the Guinness record for most players involved in a bingo game with 53,991 players playing simultaneously. If that doesn’t tell you they’re serious about what they do, then nothing will. Needless to say, if you’re a big bingo fan, San Manuel is definitely for you. Additionally, if you’re unable to visit the physical location, feel free to play on their website.
Address: 777 San Manuel Blvd, Highland, CA 92346
Santa Anita Park
Santa Anita Park is a prominent Thoroughbred racetrack that features some of the most noteworthy races in all of America. When a race is on here, it’s the talk of the town. Betting here is a must, as wagering on which horse is going to win is part of the fun at this venue. This racetrack is a piece of history in America. It’s been around since before World War 2 and has seen the country change so drastically that coming to an event here feels like you’re a part of history.
Address: 285 Huntington Dr, Arcadia, CA 91007
Tachi Palace Hotel and Casino
Tachi Palace is another one of the tribal casinos in the region and was opened in 1983, making it one of the oldest casinos in California. It’s a beautiful area to relax in and have a nice time if you want to spend some time out of the city as they have gorgeous amenities such as a pool and regular events. Their casino floor is massive with all the table games and slots you could ask for, as well as sports betting. Staying at the Tachi Palace Hotel and Casino is worth it for those looking to gamble or chill.
Address: 17225 Jersey Ave, Lemoore, CA 93245
Metrics of the California Gaming Market
Currently, most, if not all, physicals are dominated by Indian tribes. The Golden State is the biggest state with the most Indian tribal casinos. California has a population size of 39.5 million people, and if the state were to legalize sports betting, that would be a huge amount of revenue that could be taxed by the state government. If individuals were allowed to bet on sports in California, it would reinvigorate the industry and push for innovation in a scene that is already bustling simply due to the fact that people want to gamble legally.
The estimated combined earnings of all tribal casinos in the state equate to $7 billion, which is in itself already a massive industry. Imagine how much revenue would go up the second an online sports betting bill passed. If California were to follow the lead of other states and mandate that the taxed revenue from sports betting be reallocated to public infrastructure projects, we could see an extremely beneficial system going on in the state.
Future of Betting in California
California’s politics have always been tricky and difficult to trifle with. Seeing as the state is the biggest and most populated in the U.S., any political decision that hits the government floor is going to be heavily debated. And sports betting and gambling is one of the most controversial topics in the state. Not only is the government divided on how to act upon the proposition of legalizing sports betting and sports betting sites, but the Indian tribes are fighting to keep a monopoly on sports betting in the state of California.
There have been attempts to prop up a legalized sports betting industry after the Senate declared the federal ban on sports betting unconstitutional, but they are consistently shot down as soon as they are brought up. Could state legislators revive a comprehensive bill to introduce legal sports betting California? It remains to be seen, but there are always quick and surprising developments, so we can only hope.