Online Gambling California – Legal at CA gambling sites?

Many Californians were hoping to start 2023 with US-licenced online gambling operators available. Unfortunately, the results of the 2022 midterm elections didn’t work out in their favor and any form of mobile betting with local providers remains unregulated in the Golden State. New discussions should be expected sooner than later, but why wait? 

Despite the fact that local operators are not allowed to work within the state, Californians can still access online gambling sites that offer wagering on sports, wagering on horse races and online casino gaming in a secure environment. Some also have busy online poker rooms, offering a wide variety of cash games and tournaments with real money prizes. This guide highlights the best sites for gambling online in California.

We will also break down the different California online gambling options you can choose from and the sportsbook bonuses you can claim. You will learn more about the legal situation, and discover why you need to visit reputable offshore sportsbooks for online gambling in California.

California Betting Guides

Check out the rest of our guides to learn more about wagering on horse races, casino gambling, and California online sports betting.

Best California Online Gambling Sites 2023

The BMR team has reviewed more than 100 sites that offer online gambling in California. We rated all of them from A+ to F, based on criteria such as security, payout speeds, betting options, bonuses, customer service, the quality of odds and the overall user experience. Our experts ultimately decided that these are the top 10 sites for California online gambling:

  1. Bookmaker – Early sports betting lines and large online casino
  2. Heritage Sports – VIP service for all sports bettors and casino players
  3. Bovada – Busiest online poker room in America
  4. BetOnline – Offers a sportsbook, casino, racebook, poker room and esports hub
  5. BetAnySports – Reduced juice sportsbook with casino and racebook
  6. BetUS – Very large online gambling California bonuses
  7. WagerWeb – Same-day crypto payouts for online gamblers
  8. JustBet – Reputable online gambling site with simple interface
  9. Everygame – Excellent online casino and comprehensive sportsbook
  10. SportsBetting – Large betting limits and bonuses for California bettors

These sites are all based offshore. That means they do not need to adhere to local regulations in California, which prevent companies in the state from running gambling sites. However, there are no laws against Californians using these betting sites, meaning that residents no longer must travel to tribal casinos to participate in sports wagering.

We have vetted them all carefully, and we can vouch for their trustworthiness, reliability and legitimacy. They have all been paying customers out on time and treating them fairly for many years. As offshore sportsbooks are not regulated by the Californian government, it is important to stick to mature, established brands that have built up impeccable reputations in the betting community.

The Best California Gambling Site Reviews

The best online gambling sites California players can access have their own areas of expertise. Some really shine when it comes to online sports betting, others are great for casino games or horse racing, while some are just excellent all-rounders. Read our sportsbook reviews below to find the online gambling California operator that best fits your needs.

1. Bookmaker: Early Betting Lines and Excellent Casino

Bookmaker.eu

Bookmaker.eu is the No. 1 overall site for online gambling in California. The sportsbook is favored by professional bettors thanks to its early lines, attractive moneyline odds and willingness to accept sharp action. It has a clean sports betting interface, making it very user-friendly, and there is a full-service online racebook too, including a rebate of up to 8%.

The Bookmaker.eu casino offers a high volume of quality gaming titles from leading software providers. You can play video slots, 3D slots, table games, video poker and live dealer games. It offers a ton of high RTP games, such as Railway Riches (98.47%) and Frosty Christmas (98.33%).

There are large bonuses on offer and the comprehensive Bookmaker BetPoints loyalty program covers the casino along with the sportsbook. Bookmaker.eu has been in business for more than 25 years, and it has a faultless reputation among online gamblers. You will be guaranteed a secure payment if you place a winning bet, and you can rest assured that your account details and your balance will be kept safe.

Pros:

  • Best online sportsbook for California bettors
  • Large online casino with high RTP games
  • Racebook covers all the biggest races each day
  • Excellent loyalty program

Cons:

  • Does not have an online poker room
  • Smaller welcome bonus than BetOnline

2. Heritage Sports: VIP Service for All Online Gamblers

Heritage Sports homepage

Heritage Sports is another excellent all-around online gambling site that accepts players from across California. It was an invite-only betting site for many years, but management finally bowed down to overwhelming demand and began accepting all adults. Yet Heritage Sports still offers the VIP user experience that made it so highly rated.

If you like wagering on sports, you can find reduced juice -108 lines on football and basketball sides and totals at Heritage Sports. It also offers sharp moneyline and prop betting odds, so you can find great value on sports teams.

There is a detailed online casino at Heritage Sports too, along with a full racebook. It offers some generous cash-back promotions, along with its reduced juice lines. Payments are quick, secure and smooth, and customer service is strong, making this an excellent all-around California online gambling site.

Pros:

  • Reduced juice lines on football and basketball
  • VIP experience for all bettors in California
  • Strong customer service
  • Secure and reliable payouts

Cons:

  • No online poker room
  • Does not offer racebook promotions

3. Bovada: America’s Busiest Poker Room

Bovada Sportsbook Homepage

Bovada is a famous online gambling brand created as a spinoff from Bodog in 2011. It offers more betting options than any other site available in California. For starters, there is an extremely thorough sportsbook that covers a huge selection of sports and leagues. It provides a ton of prop bets and alternate lines on big games, and you can create same-game parlays. If you cannot find a market you like when wagering on sports, you can use the “What’s ya wager?” feature and the Bovada team will price it up for you.

The Bovada online casino has a strong selection of table games, so it is the best option for those seeking online casino games like blackjack and other table games. There are plenty of online slots and live dealer games too. Bovada also runs America’s busiest poker room, so you will find unparalleled liquidity and traffic there. It has a similar racebook to Bookmaker.eu and Heritage Sports, and you can bet on esports, politics, entertainment, lottery and financials too.

The betting options are always neatly laid out, and the user experience is unfailingly smooth. Bovada’s bonuses have relatively low rollover requirements compared to offshore rivals, and it has a great loyalty program. You will normally receive same-day payouts if you use crypto, which is yet another reason to sign up with Bovada.

Pros:

  • Busiest poker room in America
  • Best online casino in California for table games
  • More sports betting options than any rivals
  • Great loyalty program

Cons:

  • Does not offer reduced juice lines
  • Lower betting limits than some competitors

 4. BetOnline: Best for High Rollers and Esports Bettors

BetOnline Homepage

BetOnline goes toe-to-toe with Bovada by offering a world-class online sportsbook, casino, poker room, racebook and esports betting hub. Its poker room is not as busy as Bovada’s, and it does not offer as many props on sporting events. However, it has a more stylish interface, more features – including live streaming – larger bonuses, more promotions and higher betting limits.

One interesting BetOnline feature is the re-bet option. It means you can place any bet and repeat it 60 seconds later, ad infinitum, essentially meaning there are no upper betting limits. That makes BetOnline an ideal online gambling real money California site for high rollers.

It offers a very impressive racebook rebate. If you place an exotic bet that loses at a horse racing track, you will receive a 9% rebate. Straight bets at a race track will earn a 4% rebate. Its casino bonuses are generous, there are loads of sports betting bonuses – including odds boosts, reduced juice on NHL and free bets – and it has a very large sign-up bonus worth up to $1,000.

Pros:

  • Excellent features include live streaming and a re-bet option
  • Generous racebook rebate
  • More impressive software than rival offshore gambling sites
  • Same-day crypto payouts

Cons:

  • High rollover requirements on bonuses
  • Fewer prop bets than Bovada

5. BetAnySports: Reduced Juice Betting Site

BetAnySports Homepage

BetAnySports is famous for offering reduced juice sports betting lines. Most online sportsbooks offer standard juice odds of -110 on either side of an NFL point spread, for instance, whereas BetAnySports offers -105. That amounts to a 50% discount, so you essentially need to win less frequently at BetAnySports to end up in profit.

Its software is not as polished as the BetOnline or Bovada interfaces, but that does not really matter when you consider how good its odds are. The site is safe, it provides quick payouts and customer service is available 24/7. There is also a casino and a racebook, although it is mainly used for online sports betting.

Pros:

  • Reduced juice (-105) betting lines
  • Quick and secure payouts
  • Cashback and bonus programs
  • Excellent racebook rebate

Cons:

  • No online poker room
  • Smaller sign-up bonus than rivals

6. BetUS: Largest Bonuses in California

BetUS homepage

BetUS is the best California gambling online site for anyone interested in huge bonuses. The main BetUS welcome bonus is a 125% deposit match offer worth up to $3,125 – including $2,500 for the sportsbook and $625 for the casino. The bonus funds come with pretty high rollover requirements, but there are various alternative options, with different requirements. It has very large reload bonuses too.

The company has been around for more than 28 years. The brand suffered from a poor reputation a decade ago, but a new management team came in and transformed it. They capitalized on the homerun domain name and turned it into one of America’s most popular sportsbooks.

BetUS has also invested in improving the software and bolstering its features, so it now has live esports streaming and a BetUS TV section, which offers video picks. There is a vibrant casino and a full racebook alongside the sportsbook, so it makes a solid all-around online gambling site for California players.

Pros:

  • Largest bonuses in California
  • Live esports streaming
  • Clean, simple betting pages
  • Lots of video content

Cons:

  • High rollover requirements on bonuses
  • No online poker tournaments

7. WagerWeb: Same-Day Crypto Payouts

WagerWeb Homepage

WagerWeb is part of the same group as the highly-rated Heritage Sports. That means it offers the same -108 lines and cash-back packages, along with a similar user experience. It is not as famous as Heritage, so we have placed it further down the list, but this is nevertheless a very impressive online gambling site.

We have been monitoring WagerWeb for many years, and it always pays out on time. Our reviewers have always been impressed by the speed and efficiency of the withdrawal process, and the customer service is also very effective. You will benefit from a large bonus if you sign up with WagerWeb today.

Pros:

  • Sister site to Heritage Sports
  • Very appealing sports betting lines
  • Generous bonus package
  • Trustworthy reputation

Cons:

  • Does not offer online poker
  • Not as famous as Heritage Sports

 8. JustBet: User-Friendly Online Gambling Experience

JustBet Sportsbook Homepage

JustBet is a sister site to our No. 1 California online gambling site, Bookmaker.eu. It does not quite have the same brand recognition, heritage and reputation as Bookmaker in the online gambling community, but it is another very appealing betting site, offering a sportsbook, casino and racebook.

As the name suggests, JustBet offers a no-frills user experience, allowing you to place bets quickly and efficiently. The site is very reliable, so you should never miss the opportunity to place a wager you like. It excels in all the key areas that BMR focuses on when reviewing California online gambling sites, so we would recommend it to all bettors in the Golden State.

It is especially useful for sharps that want to bet on the opening lines before public sentiment causes them to shift. Professional bettors are accepted alongside recreational players. The loyalty program is very comprehensive, and new customers a choice of four different welcome bonuses.

Pros:

  • Sister site to Bookmaker.eu
  • Releases early lines on sports
  • Accepts sharp bettors and does not limit winners
  • Lots of video slots

Cons:

  • No online poker
  • Lower betting limits than some rivals

 9. Everygame: Best Casino for California Bettors

Everygame Sportsbook Homepage

Everygame was formerly known as Intertops, but it rebranded in 2021. This is the world’s oldest online sportsbook, as it took the very first online wager back in the 1990s. It has evolved considerably since then, so it now offers a high-quality overall online gambling experience for Californians.

The highlight is the casino gambling section, which features a very broad range of excellent games. You will find more slot games and table games than most rival offshore sites, and they are also of a higher quality. There is a poker room too. It does not have a racebook section, but horse racing is covered within the sportsbook.

The sportsbook was dated, and it did not have a live betting section, which held Intertops back in our ratings. However, that issue was fixed when it relaunched as Everygame, so you can now place in-play wagers on a large selection of games and events.

Pros:

  • Best online casino in California
  • Covers lots of sporting events
  • Large new live betting platform
  • User-friendly online gambling interface

Cons:

  • Small sign-up bonus
  • Poker room is not as busy as Bovada’s

 10. SportsBetting: High Betting Limits and Great Bonuses

Sportsbetting Homepage

Our list of the best online gambling California sites concludes with SportBetting.ag. This is a sister site to BetOnline, so it offers all the same strengths: high limits, large bonuses, same-day cryptocurrency withdrawals, loads of promotions, tons of sports to bet on and a great racebook, casino and poker room.

However, BetOnline was updated to a far superior platform a couple of years ago, leaving it with arguably the best software of any offshore site. SportsBetting still uses the old software, which now looks very dated next to BetOnline, so we have placed it tenth on our list.

Pros:

  • Sister site to BetOnline
  • Large bonuses and lots of promotions
  • Very quick crypto payouts
  • High betting limits

Cons:

  • Software is now a little dated
  • Charges deposit fees on credit card payments

California Online Gambling – The Top Sites Compared

This chart will help you compare the top features and bonuses on offer at the top California online gambling sites. You can learn more about each site by reading our mini-reviews above or clicking check out our in-depth reviews from the top sportsbooks page.

SportsbookRatingOnline SincePayment MethodsRead Review
BookmakerA+1996Credit Card, Bitcoin, P2P, CryptoBookmaker.eu Review
Bovada A+ 2011 Credit Card, Bitcoin Bovada Review
Heritage SportsA+2001Credit Card, Bitcoin, Cashiers Check, Bank Transfer, P2PHeritage Sports Review
BetOnlineA+2001Credit Card, Bitcoin, Crypto, Cashiers Check, Bank Transfer P2P,BetOnline Review
BetAnySportsA2002Credit Card, Bitcoin, Electronic CheckBetAnySports Review
BetUSA2000Credit Card, Bitcoin, Bank Transfer, P2PBetUS Review
WagerWebA1994Credit Card, Bitcoin, Cashiers Check, Bank Transfer, P2PWagerWeb Review
EverygameA1996Credit Card, Bitcoin, Skrill, Neteller, Bank Transfer, P2PEverygame Review
JustBetA2000Credit Card, Bitcoin, P2P, CryptoJustBet Review
SportsbettingA2002Credit Card, Bitcoin, Crypto, Cashiers Check, Bank Transfer P2PSportsbetting Review

Is online gambling legal in California?

After the Supreme Court lifted a nationwide ban on sports betting in 2018, legal gambling outlets began popping up all over the country. California, though, has been behind the curve.

In November of 2022, hopes of a potential sports betting industry in California were high. A retail sports betting initiative that would have allowed tribal gaming venues to offer sports betting called Prop 26 was on the ballot; this was along with an online sports betting measure called Prop 27.

Neither piece of gambling legislation passed. Also, lawmakers didn’t even raise the question of casino gambling. After seeing the dismal failure of the legislative efforts for sports betting, the future doesn’t look so good for other types of online gambling expansion.

However, offshore sportsbooks are not covered under California law and leave residents plenty of options; these providers offer wagering on sports, wagering on horse races and, of course, online casino gambling.

Sites such as Bookmaker, Heritage Sports, Bovada and BetOnline welcome bettors from California, and they can all be trusted to grade bets fairly and pay out on time when you win.

Online Sports Gambling in California

If you want to bet on sports online in California, you need to visit an offshore sportsbook. The Golden State permits Daily Fantasy Sports contests, so you can play them at FanDuel and DraftKings, but if you want the real thing, you must head to a site such as BetOnline, Bookmaker, Bovada or Heritage Sports.

We have already addressed the key question – is gambling online legal in California – and explained that there are no laws preventing you from using those sites. They have all earned A+ ratings with BMR, as they are trustworthy, top online sportsbooks that always pay out if you win.

They take bets on every professional team in California, and all the big college football and basketball games too. You will find dozens of betting options on every NFL, MLB, NBA or NHL game, while they also have very detailed sections for soccer, tennis, golf, UFC, boxing and motorsports.

Californians that visit a site such as BetOnline or Bookmaker will also be able to bet on around 20 additional sports, with all sorts of worldwide leagues featured alongside the major leagues. You can bet in-play while games are unfolding, and you can also browse a huge volume of futures betting markets.

Offshore Gambling

Offshore gambling companies have been diligently serving the Californian market since the 1990s. Operators such as Bookmaker and BetOnline have now been in business for more than 25 years, and they have built up large customer bases in the Golden State and elsewhere in America.

These companies are based in countries such as Costa Rica, Curaçao and Panama. They may not be regulated by California authorities, but they are licensed companies in their jurisdictions, and they have primarily been set up to appeal to American sports bettors, casino players and poker players. They all offer multiple forms of gambling.

You will find sports such as football, basketball and baseball taking center stage at these sites, and all prices and bonuses are in USD. They allow you to bet on:

  • Professional and college sports
  • Esports such as CS:GO and League of Legends
  • Politics, entertainment, financials and novelty markets
  • Thoroughbred and harness racing from the USA and around the world
  • Slots, table games, video poker and live dealer games
  • Poker tournaments and poker cash games

You can place bets on all these categories at a single site, making offshore gambling very convenient for Californians. Even if legislative efforts are eventually successful, the legal sports betting industry will be limited in what it can offer – no casino games, politics betting, esports and poker tournaments, for instance – so we expect the popularity of offshore gambling sites to endure long into the future.

It is also worth noting that it is very cost-effective to run online gambling sites outside of the USA, where overheads are lower and tax rates are favorable. That allows gambling sites to offer better odds and larger bonuses than the locally regulated operators in states like Arizona, Illinois, New Jersey, New York and Pennsylvania.

Payments at an Online Gambling Site in California

You can choose from a wide variety of sportsbook payment methods at the best online gambling sites that accept Californians. They include:

  • Credit cards and debit cards (Visa, MasterCard, Discover, American Express)
  • Bank transfers, wire transfers, P2P transfers
  • Digital wallets such as Skrill and Neteller
  • Bitcoin and alternative coins

It is worth remembering that sites offering gambling in California are based overseas, and there can be charges for sending money across borders. It can also be a time-consuming process. For that reason, many bettors use cryptocurrencies, which by their very nature are designed to cross borders effortlessly, in a quick, convenient and secure manner.

The most commonly used cryptocurrencies among bettors are Bitcoin, Litecoin, Bitcoin Cash, Ether and stablecoins such as Tether and USDC. You will often benefit from same-day payouts if you use crypto at a site like Bovada or BetOnline. Bitcoin and Ethereum network fees can be high at certain times, so coins on other blockchains – such as ADA or DOT – can be useful. Bookmaker also stands out by reimbursing Bitcoin network fees, making it a great choice.

You can use traditional, fiat-based methods, but some betting sites charge you for doing so. It is worth checking to see if there are any fees so that you are armed with all the facts before making the payment.

Online Gambling Laws in California

We have explained the legal situation in depth above, but it bears repeating that there are no locally regulated gambling sites in California, but there are no laws stopping you from using offshore gambling sites.

If you are looking for locally regulated online gambling, you will be limited to two options: wagering on horse racing and DFS. Operators such as TwinSpires and TVG are permitted to offer online racebooks in the Golden State.

To bet on sports, casino games, horse racing and poker in one place, you just need to sign up with an offshore gambling site. We recommend Bookmaker, Heritage Sports, BetOnline and Bovada. It only takes a minute or two to sign up with those California online gambling sites, and you can then start betting on your favorite leagues and casino games straight away.

In terms of in-person betting in California, there are card rooms, tribal casinos, racetracks and off-track betting parlors for horseplayers. However, they are often inconveniently located, and it is time consuming and expensive to visit them, so it is much easier to simply bet online at reputable gambling sites.

California Gaming Laws Timeline

  • 1933 – The California Horse Racing Board is formed and pari-mutuel horse racing betting begins.
  • 1976 – Voters approved a constitutional amendment to legalize charitable bingo.
  • 1984 – California legalizes lottery games, leading to the creation of the California State lottery. The first tickets are sold the following year, on October 3, 1985.
  • 1988 – President Ronald Reagan signed the Indian Gaming Regulatory Act, paving the way for tribal casinos to open in California. This law allowed Native American tribes to create casinos on tribal land.
  • 1995 – A moratorium is placed on new cardrooms opening in California.
  • 1997 – The Gambling Control Act is adopted, creating the California Gambling Control Commission to regulate the state’s cardrooms.
  • 2002 – Advanced deposit pari-mutuel wagering on horse races was legalized.
  • 2007 – Poker night fundraisers were legalized.
  • 2016 – The California legislature votes in favor of permitting Daily Fantasy Sports contests.
  • 2020 – A ballot proposal seeking to legalize sports betting in California fails to gain enough support.
  • 2022 – wo separate sports betting propositions made it onto the November ballot. Proposition 26 was a retail sports betting initiative for tribal gaming venues, whereas Proposition 27 would have allowed online gambling expansion and mobile sports betting in the state. Unfortunately, neither ballot measure was successful.
  • November 2022: Californians vote against Prop 26 and Prop 27 in the November midterms. Sports betting continues to be illegal in the Golden State and the situation doesn’t look like it will be changing in 2023.

Advantages of Online Gambling California Sites

When it comes to online wagering on sports, you have plenty of options that will allow you to bet on all types of games. As long as you are of legal gambling age, you’re just a few clicks away from online wagering. There are lots of advantages to using the best online gambling California sites. There are the top three benefits:

Accessibility and Convenience

It is very easy and convenient to bet on sports, casino games, politics, poker tournaments and horse races at California online gambling sites. They offer high-quality mobile sites, so you can place bets very efficiently from your smartphone or other mobile devices. Their desktop sites are also very polished and easy to use.

Using an online casino is a lot easier than visiting cardrooms or land-based casinos. You can start playing your favorite games in seconds, and you do not have to spend money on gas fees or public transport. That makes it far more cost-effective. You will also enjoy the social aspect of visiting a casino if you use the live dealer section at a highly-rated online casino site.

Lots of Gambling Options

Offshore gambling sites put thousands of exciting betting options at your fingertips. For example, BetOnline is divided into six sections:

  • A sportsbook covering more than 20 sports, plus entertainment, financials and politics.
  • A live betting section that offers live streaming of major sports events.
  • A casino with all types of games including table games, slots, video poker, live dealer tables and specialty games.
  • A racebook that covers hundreds of U.S. and international races each day from the most popular horse racing tracks.
  • A poker room featuring cash games and tournaments.
  • An esports hub with live streaming and coverage of many different tournaments.

Bovada offers a very similar breadth of options, with a great loyalty program spanning them all. You will never run out of interesting betting opportunities at the best gambling sites as there are plenty of options.

Bonuses and Promotions

Online gambling sites offer bonuses and promotions you can’t get at a land-based casino. There are lots of rival companies vying for your attention in California, so they offer these promos to stand out. These are some of the offers you can claim:

  • Large deposit match welcome bonuses
  • Reload bonuses
  • Free bets and risk-free bets
  • Rebates and cash-back deals
  • Odds boosts, profit boosts and parlay boosts
  • Reduced juice specials
  • Loyalty and VIP programs

These bonuses span the sportsbook, the online casino and the racebook at the best online gambling sites. They provide you with lots of opportunities to bet with house money, which improves your long-term chances of making a profit from your California online gambling activities. These bonuses make betting on your favorite professional sports leagues a breeze.

The Best California Gambling Sites

There are hundreds of gambling sites targeting Californians right now. However, we would highly recommend that you stick to the legit, reputable sites we have highlighted on this page. Unfortunately, there are scam sites in operation, which we have highlighted on the BMR blacklist, and they must be avoided at all costs. If you sign up with Bookmaker.eu, Heritage Sports, Bovada or BetOnline, you will enjoy a safe, high-quality online gambling experience. If you need more information about these operators, you can read our detailed reviews before deciding upon which California online gambling site is right for you.

California Online Gambling FAQs

Can Californians gamble online?

California does not allow online gambling companies to open and operate within its borders; however, you can easily access casino gambling and online sports betting with an offshore site. 

Can you play casino online for real money in California?

Yes. Casino gambling is not offered locally but online casinos that operate offshore accept players from California. These sites offer several different types of games including online slots and table games like roulette.

What gambling sites work in California?

Despite strong legislative efforts over the past several years, gambling expansion has yet to take place in California. For that reason, only offshore gambling sites like those we have reviewed work in the Golden State.

What sportsbook can I use in California?

California does not allow gambling companies within its borders to offer wagering on sports. Offshore sportsbooks like Heritage Sports and BetAnySports offer plenty of options for betting on the top sports leagues worldwide.

Can I gamble online in California with a VPN?

You can access online casino gambling without a VPN using the top offshore sites. These sites offer casino gaming, including online slots and table games to residents all over the United States with no restrictions.

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