Canadian Betting Sites
Typically, Canadians like the same sports as their counterparts across the border in the United States so that involves a keen interest in Ice Hockey and American Football in particular. Baseball and Basketball are also followed extensively while soccer is also a growth sport with Canadian teams competing in North America’s Major League.
What Makes a Great Canadian Bookmaker?
Canadian betting sites looking to make inroads with the betting public there will therefore have to keep this in mind as the community will demand extensive coverage and plenty of betting markets on these individual sports.
In addition, there may be some limited interest in sports that are generically popular across the world such as golf and tennis but in general, they like to focus on their core events.
Best Sports Betting Sites in Canada
As for the choice of Canadian sportsbooks, that’s obviously down to the individual but there are many familiar and established industry names who are Canadian-friendly. Intertops were the first betting site to officially trade online, having first opened their virtual doors in 1996 and they are happy to accept customers from this part of North America.
Joining them are the likes of Bodog, Bet365, 5Dimes, BetOnline and William Hill so there you have a good mix of operators. Some, like BetOnline have a main focus on North American sports while for others, this is just part of their wider services.
Customers who can place a bet in this country are free to choose but they will look for certain qualities in Canadian betting sites. A welcome bonus is a nice way to start a relationship with your bookie and hopefully there will be ongoing promotions further down the line.
Overall value for money is equally important so punters in Canada will want to see strong odds, particularly in markets for those sports that we mentioned above. Anyone looking to succeed here needs to address these points; it’s not enough just to trade here and hope that the business will come in just because you are offering a rare outlet for Canadian bettors.
Betting in Canada
Like many countries, Canada’s attitude to gambling was severely tested when the internet came along and the rise in online betting began. Traditionally, this was a nation opposed to the process and while certain laws were relaxed from 1970 onwards, it remained extremely difficult to place a bet if you were a Canadian citizen.
It’s much easier now in the digital age and it is estimated that Canadians will stake some 15 Billion Dollars a year through those channels. The law makes it clear that they cannot stake on a single event – only multiples with three events are strictly permissible – but this hasn’t stopped the average citizen from enjoying this pastime.
Present Day Rules
From 1985 onwards, the government gave individual provinces the choice of whether to allow an organisation to establish a gambling operation in that region. Certain provinces relaxed the laws to allow casinos to be built but of course, the internet provides something of a legal grey area.
No online operator has to obtain a license in Canada in order to trade here so that can pose a problem to those provinces to wish to keep things heavily regulated. Effectively, the law simply states that any business based in the country that wants to trade in gambling must have an official government license. Therefore, a sportsbook who is based outside of the country and licensed in Malta, Isle of Man, Curacao and in other parts of the world is effectively circumnavigating that restriction.
Sports betting sites that are Canadian friendly will commonly originate from Curacao or possibly the Kahnawake Mohawk Territory. It’s not a country that everyone embraces however due to the government’s attitude and there are a number of popular bookies who won’t trade here. You may also find that if an operator has opened their doors to Canadian business, there may be some exclusions in terms of the promotions that are offered to customers. Along with other countries, residents of Canada may well be ineligible for some promos so do check the relevant offer in order to be completely certain.
History of Gambling in Canada
Prior to 1970, the act of gambling on any sporting event or slot, card, table game was widely outlawed in Canada. Inevitably, the practice was driven underground so the government finally decided to give individual provinces the right to choose whether they would allow betting sites to trade officially.
The applicable law here is the Criminal Code and this was initially relaxed in 1970, but it wasn’t until 1985 that provinces were able to choose whether to allow gambling across their region. From this point onwards, we saw a limited number of casinos being built while state lotteries also began to appear on a sporadic basis.
That law still applies and nothing has really changed since the internet boom. If an operator is licensed outside of Canada then the reality is that they can freely trade and offer services to its citizens, even if some Canadian betting sites have been slow to get involved with this market.
There are certain restrictions in terms of the number of events a Canadian can bet on and while single stakes are frowned upon, it is permissible to make a parlay stake involving three or more events. Overall, the attitude displayed by the government is an accepting one: they know that they cannot stop the rise of betting sites in Canada and they cannot stop their citizens from making a bet but they are looking to promote responsible play.
In turn, Canadian betting sites must be aware of certain rules but in general they can freely trade here. In order to succeed they should be looking to cater for this very specific audience who favour a fairly restricted range of sports but if the company can get things right for this market, there is a lot of business to be done.