British Columbia Sports Betting Review 2022

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British Columbia legalized single-game sports betting on August 27th, 2021, opening the door for regulated sportsbooks. The province is still looking into options, but PlayNow.com, run by the British Columbia Lottery Corporation, is operating for now. To learn more about British Columbia sports betting, including a list of top sports betting sites, read our full review below.

Top Sportsbooks in Canada

We scoured the internet for the best online sportsbooks available in Canada.

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Sports Interaction100% bonus up to $125

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How We Chose the Top Sportsbooks

Our review considered the following criteria when making our picks for the best sportsbooks in British Columbia

Reputation – Review of the site’s reputation in the betting industry, taking into consideration trustworthiness and security. 

Promotions & Bonuses – Review of the number and quality of promotions and bonuses provided by the sportsbook.

Betting Odds – Review of where the betting odds of each bookmaker stacks up compared to other top sportsbooks in Canada.

Betting Markets – Review of the number of betting markets for both pre-match and live betting.

Mobile Friendliness – Review of the mobile accessibility of the website with special consideration to any mobile apps.

Payment Options – Review of the number of different payment options and any fees, processing times and limitations associated with them.

Customer Service – Review of the different support streams on each site which include response times and available languages.

British Columbia Sports Betting

British Columbia Sports Betting Landscape

Sports betting has been legal in BC for over three decades but was limited to parlay bets until recently. On the 27th of August 2021, new single-event betting legislation came into force across Canada. The legislation allowed each individual province in Canada to introduce legal single-event betting to its natives. In the case of British Columbia, the province started operations for legal single-sports betting immediately via the government-run, PlayNow.com. 

PlayNow Sportsbook offers bettors over 20 sports and hundreds of leagues to choose from, including live in-play bets. Promotional bonuses are available for new and existing customers, including a top Welcome Bonus. On top of sports betting, the site also offers casino, poker, bingo and lottery sections. There is no mobile app version of the platform available at the moment.

British Columbia sports betting doesn’t include private operators in the market yet.

Parlay bets have been a part of sports betting in BC for over 30 years now. Sports Action, a product of the British Columbia Lottery Corporation (BCLC), offers a wide range of parlay betting opportunities. Bet types include Oddset 3-outcome, Oddset 2-outcome, point spread, over/under and props. Sports Action bets can currently only be placed in-person at local lottery retailers.

British Columbia Sports Betting Timeline

As mentioned above, legal sports betting has been taking place in British Columbia for almost 30 years now. It wasn’t until very recently that major strides into single-game sports betting took place. The timeline below provides an overlook of the history of sports betting in BC:

90s – Parlay betting is introduced to British Columbia through Sports Action, allowing natives to place wagers via lottery outlets across the province.

2004 – The BCLC launches online sports betting with the PlayNow.com website. Bettors from British Columbia are now allowed to place provincially-regulated parlay bets online for the first time.

February 25th, 2020 – Saskatchewan MP Kevin Waugh introduces Bill C-218, the Safe and Regulated Sports Betting Act. The proposed legislation attempts to legalize single-game sports betting.

April-June, 2021 – Bill C-218 passes in the House of Commons, Senate and receives Royal Assent.

August 27th, 2021 – The British Columbia Lottery Corporation (BCLC) announces single-game events will be available on PlayNow.com with immediate effect. The rollout happened the very same day as legalization, wasting no time.

November 1st, 2021 – Play Now, the lone regulated sports betting provider in BC, surpasses $25 million in single-game bets.

Current Position – BCLC is looking into ways to bring single-event wagering to land-based venues such as casinos. The BCLC is also looking at private sports betting operators that may enter the legal market. New operators will likely support Vancouver sports teams and be affiliated with a Vancouver-based casino.

British Columbia Sports Betting Requirements

Bettors must be over the age of 19 and physically located with the province of British Columbia to place sports bets. Legal betting is only available at specific lottery board-approved retail stores and the government-run PlayNow.com website.

How to Start Online Sports Betting in BC

Before you can start to place bets online, you must first register for an online betting account and make a deposit. Read the steps below to help get you started:

  1. Visit an online sportsbook of your choice and click the Register button. 
  2. Complete the registration form with the required details and tick the terms and conditions to create a gaming account.
  3. Login and make a deposit using a payment option of your choice. Be sure to look for any Welcome Bonuses offered by the site before making your first deposit.
  4. You will now be able to place bets by clicking on the odds of any player or team.
  5. The odds will pop up on your betting slip. You may then enter the bet amount and click on the ‘Place Bet’ button to confirm.
  6. Winning bets will be paid out automatically into your gaming account.

Other Types of Gambling in British Columbia

Other forms of gambling available in British Columbia include Casino, Poker Rooms, Lottery, Horse Racing and Daily Fantasy Sports. 

Casino – BC natives can play casino games at brick-and-mortar casinos throughout the province. Players will be required to be over the age of 19 to participate in casino gaming. Players can also start playing online casino games at the PlayNow.com website. The site offers slots, table games, video poker and live casino games.

Poker Rooms – Live poker rooms can be found at a number of casinos in BC. Online poker games can be played at PlayNow.com. Poker game types include cash games, tournaments and sit n go’s.

Horse Racing – Horse racing bets can be placed at a number of tracks in the province. Some of the most popular venues are Sunflower Downs in Princeton, Fraser Downs Racetrack in Surrey and Hastings Racetrack in Vancouver. PlayNow.com currently doesn’t offer online horse race wagering.

Daily Fantasy Sports – Daily fantasy Sports sites have been running in BC for years now. The legality of the sites have been in a grey area until recently being officially legalized when Bill C-218 passed. The best DFS operators such as FanDuel, Monkey Knife and DraftKings are all available in BC.

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British Columbia Sports Betting FAQ

If you’re looking for quicks answers to frequently asked questions about British Columbia sports betting, read the FAQ section below:

Is sports betting legal in British Columbia?

Yes, sports betting is legal on both parlay and single-sports bets in British Columbia. Betting on sports in the province is regulated by the British Columbia Lottery Corporation.

Can I bet on sports online in British Columbia?

Yes, you can bet on sports online with the government-run Play Now Sportsbook. The operator currently offers over 20 sports and hundreds of leagues from around the world for both pre-match and live bets. Popular leagues include NFL, NHL, MLB, NBA and UFC.

Who can bet on sports in British Columbia?

To place bets on sports in BC, bettors must be over the age of 19 and physically located in the province. Online bets require you to first sign up for a betting account and make the first deposit.

Can I bet on an American league in British Columbia?

Yes, virtually all popular American-based leagues are available for betting. The most popular American leagues include NHL, NFL, NBA, MLB, NCAA and UFC. Canadian leagues such as the CFL and CHL are also offered.

What other forms of gambling are available online in BC?

Apart from sportsbooks, players can access online Casinos, Poker Rooms, Horse Racing, Lottery and Daily Fantasy Sports. PlayNow.com holds all of the above except for horse racing and daily fantasy sports.