Legal Ontario Betting Sites & Sportsbooks 2024


With the approval of Bill C-218 in June 2021, Ontario gained the ability to progress with its initiative to establish an open and unrestricted market for licensing online sports betting providers. Subsequently, the Alcohol and Gaming Commission of Ontario (AGCO) formally introduced iGaming Ontario, a new division tasked with overseeing the licensing and operations of online gaming and sports betting platforms within the Ontario market, encompassing esports.

These platforms are exclusively accessible to individuals physically situated within the boundaries of Ontario. Notably, the AGCO opted not to prohibit their newly licensed providers from catering to other Canadian provinces in the so-called ‘grey market.’ This pivotal decision welcomed numerous previously ‘grey’ brands into the Ontario market. Consequently, these operators were not constrained to serving either Ontario or the ‘grey market’; they could actively engage with both markets. This strategic move facilitated the seamless transition of hundreds of thousands of existing Ontario sports betting account holders from formerly ‘grey’ betting sites to the newly regulated system. However, questions arise about the implications for individuals residing in the rest of Canada, and we delve into that aspect in the following explanation.

If you are outside Ontario, this entire page is meant for you.

For those located outside Ontario, please be aware that this entire page is crafted with you in mind. Due to the recent regulations imposed by the Alcohol and Gaming Commission of Ontario (AGCO), we’ve had to restrict access for individuals within Ontario. Originally established in 2021, this page aimed to explore the entry of leading global betting brands into the newly legalized Ontario market, providing updates as the market evolved. However, AGCO regulations stipulate that unlicensed brands like Bodog or 1XBET cannot be mentioned alongside licensed ones such as Betsafe, bet365, BetVictor, or Betway for individuals within Ontario. Despite these restrictions, we believe in the value of this discussion for interested readers and chose not to abandon it.

Therefore, for those outside Ontario, we’ve maintained this page and consistently update it as a point of reference. This serves as a resource for individuals in the rest of Canada to discover reputable betting brands catering to both the official Ontario sports betting market and the broader Canadian audience through the “grey market” via “offshore” sites. Additionally, you can identify brands exclusively for Ontario. Most of the licensed Ontario brands we recommend also extend their services to the rest of Canada, covering BC, Alberta, Saskatchewan, Manitoba, Quebec, the Atlantic provinces, and territories, with one exception that excludes Quebec players.

As detailed elsewhere on legalbetontario, many of these companies aspire to be licensed throughout Canada but can only apply in jurisdictions where licensing is available. Consequently, these sportsbook providers will continue to serve Canadians outside Ontario from the ‘grey market.’ If you wish to engage with them, you can do so, but your experience will occur on their international platforms. It’s crucial to emphasize that only individuals physically located in Ontario may participate in official iGaming Ontario betting sites.

Moreover, the AGCO has mandated that their licensed providers refrain from advertising new customer offers for Ontario, even if available on the operator’s own platforms. This rule does not apply to the rest of Canada. Given that this page is exclusively accessible to those outside Ontario, we can showcase the Canadian sportsbook bonuses that our recommended providers are eager to share with you.

When did the legal sports betting and iGaming market officially commence in Ontario?

 The market officially opened on Monday, April 4, 2022. While many of the new entrants to Ontario, such as PointsBet, BetMGM, BetRivers, FanDuel, and theScore Bet, were prepared for the launch on this date, DraftKings experienced a delay. On the other hand, companies that had been operating in Ontario’s ‘grey market’ and were in the process of obtaining their licenses, including Betsafe, bet365, Betway, ComeOn!, BetVictor, Casumo, among others, did not feel the urgency to be licensed by April 4.

This is because adults in Ontario could already engage with these platforms before the official market opening. Their accounts could seamlessly transition to the legal system once the respective companies acquired their official licenses. If individuals preferred playing with an Ontario betting site assured of obtaining a license, they had the flexibility to do so without waiting for the market launch date.

What makes the Ontario sports betting market appealing to iGaming companies?

The Ontario sports betting market holds significant appeal for iGaming companies due to the combination of its sizable population and economic prosperity. With a population of nearly 15 million people, if Ontario were a U.S. state, it would rank as the 5th largest, surpassing states like New York and Pennsylvania. Central to this population is Toronto, often considered the 3rd most populous and influential metropolitan area in the U.S. and Canada, trailing only behind New York City and Los Angeles.

The Greater Toronto Area, serving as a hub for finance, insurance, real estate, innovation, and technology, boasts a wealth of sports enthusiasts. Furthermore, it is home to professional teams in prominent leagues such as the NHL, NBA, MLB, and MLS. The affluent sports fans in this region are anticipated to be valuable customers for sports betting, with teams serving as effective vehicles for marketing various sports betting brands through strategic partnership deals.

Taking into account these factors, the Ontario sports betting market is expected to generate substantial handle and revenue, positioning it among the highest-performing jurisdictions in North America.

Could the Ontario sports betting and iGaming market truly achieve legal status?

The legality of the Ontario sports betting and iGaming market has been a subject of discussion, with opinions divided. Gaming lawyer Ron Segev, in an article published in iGB in August 2021, raised doubts about the legality of Ontario’s regulatory approach. Segev argued that the ‘hands-off’ licensing strategy employed by Ontario and its regulatory bodies could potentially conflict with federal law. According to Segev, federal law stipulates that sports betting or gaming establishments in Canada are generally illegal unless operated by the provinces, which are mandated to “conduct and manage” such activities. He suggested that Ontario should have advocated for a national iGaming regime under federal jurisdiction instead of creating its own.

In response to these concerns, Paul Burns, the CEO of the Canadian Gaming Association (CGA), clarified the situation in a podcast with gambling compliance firm Vixeo in September 2021. Burns reassured that the legal framework for iGaming Ontario is being carefully constructed by the province’s lawyers to align with Canadian federal law. He emphasized that the province is taking measures to avoid being classified as an “arm’s length” party in this relationship, which could potentially render the entire regulatory construct illegal.

As part of the licensing process, the province is moving beyond a conventional licensee-licensor relationship. Instead, commercial partnerships will be established, and shared bank accounts will be implemented for regular deposits of operator/provincial winnings. The province will have the ability to withdraw its prescribed share of the winnings from these shared accounts on a regular basis.

Which bookmakers will dominate the legal Ontario market?

The dominant bookmakers in the legal Ontario market are expected to be the formerly ‘grey’ sportsbooks and Daily Fantasy Sports (DFS) brands with existing customers. As Ontario regulators permit gaming companies to serve other provinces from the ‘grey market,’ many ‘grey’ brands are anticipated to seek licenses to become fully legal Ontario betting sites. These operators will have the advantage of onboarding their existing Ontario players to the legal, regulated system while continuing to cater to players in other Canadian provinces through their ‘grey market’ domains.

This trend suggests that the ‘land rush’ for market share in Ontario has already taken place, with numerous Ontarian bettors having engaged with these ‘grey market’ sportsbooks over the past two decades. The largest among the formerly ‘grey market’ operators are likely to emerge as dominant players in the legal Ontario sports betting landscape. These established brands won’t be starting from zero in the legal market; they will bring with them a substantial customer base, potentially numbering in the thousands or even hundreds of thousands.

Additionally, DFS brands such as FanDuel and DraftKings may also assert dominance in the Ontario market. Armed with existing databases of Ontario DFS players, these brands can facilitate a smooth transition for their customers to the respective Ontario sportsbook verticals when permitted. The combination of an existing Ontario customer base, brand recognition, and significant North American marketing budgets positions these DFS brands to capture a substantial share of the Ontario iGaming market. (Update: AGCO informed these companies that they could not migrate player accounts from DFS toward their new sportsbook and casino platforms as DFS was not under the new gaming rules in Ontario.)

Why Formerly ‘Grey Market’ & DFS Brands Will Prevail in Attracting Untapped Ontario Players

As the rules for advertising and marketing become clearer in Ontario’s iGaming landscape, all brands will have the opportunity to promote and establish marketing collaborations to capture players awaiting the fully legal Ontario sportsbook experience. However, the incumbent formerly ‘grey’ bookmakers and DFS brands possess a significant edge over new entrants to the Ontario market, thanks to their effective utilization of word-of-mouth marketing and established affiliate marketing partnerships.

While new entrants like PointsBet, BetMGM, BetRivers, and others may struggle with word-of-mouth marketing due to the absence of existing customers at launch, formerly ‘grey’ brands will benefit from substantial word-of-mouth advertising. Long-time customers will eagerly share the news of their favorite online sportsbook becoming a fully ‘legal’ provider, leading to inquiries such as ‘Which betting site are you with? Are they legal in Ontario now?’ or ‘How are the odds at ______? Do you like their platform?’

This word-of-mouth marketing strategy will significantly contribute to the success of incumbent formerly ‘grey’ and DFS providers, as their existing customers play a pivotal role in recommending them to new players, resulting in the acquisition of customers at minimal cost. With companies boasting 25,000 to 100,000 or more existing Ontario customers at the legal launch in 2022, these operators are poised to dominate the Ontario market with high rates of new player acquisitions through the influential channel of word-of-mouth marketing.

Additionally, formerly ‘grey’ Canadian brands already boast established affiliate marketing partnerships with Canada-focused online publishers running ‘sportsbook review’ and ‘odds comparison’ websites. This advantage allows incumbent sportsbook brands to seamlessly transition onto new Ontario-focused marketing pages, leveraging their established brands for effective promotion. In contrast, new entrants like BetMGM, BetRivers, and PointsBet will need to quickly establish marketing agreements with key affiliate publishers well before the 2022 market launch to catch up with the leading pack in the race for player acquisition during the remaining ‘land rush.’

What Sports and Leagues Will Be Permitted on Licensed Ontario Betting Sites?

The Alcohol and Gaming Commission of Ontario (AGCO) has outlined guidelines for licensed operators regarding sports and event betting integrity. According to these guidelines, betting on ‘Minor Sports’ is prohibited. Specifically, the Ontario Hockey League (OHL) is explicitly mentioned as a league for which betting in Ontario will be disallowed. It can be inferred that betting on the Western Hockey League (WHL) and Quebec Major Junior Hockey League (QMJHL) will also be prohibited.

Providers in the ‘grey market,’ as outlined below, currently offer betting on Canadian major junior hockey events. However, within the framework of their licensed Ontario offerings, they will need to eliminate this coverage due to the guidelines. One of the key points in the integrity guidelines specifies that the majority of event participants should be 18 years of age or older, thereby ruling out betting on Canadian major junior hockey events where participants may not meet this age requirement.

The impact of these guidelines on the ability of Ontarians to bet on the IIHF World Junior Hockey Championship, largely comprised of 19-year-olds, remains to be seen. The AGCO’s regulations aim to uphold the integrity of sports and events, aligning with age-related considerations for participants.

Will Esports Betting Be Legal in Ontario?

The status of esports betting in Ontario is not as straightforward as it may seem. In contrast to recent sports betting regulations in Germany and the Netherlands, where esports events are not treated as traditional sporting events, it appears that Ontario is inclined to view esports events similarly to other sports.

At the top of the Alcohol and Gaming Commission of Ontario’s (AGCO) final sport and event standards for iGaming, there is an indication that esports events will be considered in the same category as traditional sporting events. This suggests that esports betting will likely be allowed in Ontario.

Unlike the regulations in Germany and the Netherlands, where licensed betting sites can offer esports coverage only if event organizers demonstrate governance on par with traditional sports, Ontario seems to be taking a more inclusive approach.

Barring any changes, legal esports betting is expected to be available in Ontario upon market launch in 2022. The AGCO’s sport and event standards indicate a recognition of esports as a legitimate category for betting, and operators entering the Ontario market are likely to include esports offerings in their platforms. We have conducted reviews of the esports offerings from the top operators entering the Ontario market to identify the best Ontario esports betting sites.

Ontario Sports Betting Payment Methods: Anticipate New and Popular Options

As the legal Ontario sports betting market opens in early 2022, players can expect a range of new and popular payment methods to become available. Services like PayPal, known for their widespread use and convenience, are likely to be among the options offered for account deposits and withdrawals.

In the past, due to the incomplete legality of online sports betting in Canada, platforms like PayPal refrained from facilitating payments to offshore betting companies. However, with the establishment of a legal framework for sports betting in Ontario, it is anticipated that these services will be accessible to players, providing a seamless transaction experience.

Prior to the passage of bill C-218, which allowed for single-event sports betting in Canada, the BCLC’s was the only platform in the country offering such services to residents of British Columbia. As the Ontario market opens up, popular bank debit methods like Interac, iDebit, Instadebit, and Citadel are expected to continue serving players, ensuring a diverse array of payment options for enhanced convenience in the legal Ontario sports betting landscape.

Reasons to Choose an Officially Licensed Ontario Sports Betting Site

  • Proper Regulatory Oversight:
    • An Ontario license ensures that providers undergo thorough product testing to ensure fairness and compliance with provincial standards.
    • Players have the assurance of being paid on winnings and can address consumer problems or concerns with the support of the AGCO and iGaming Ontario.
  • Contributions to Ontario’s Revenue:
    • Licensed sportsbooks contribute to Ontario’s revenue through license fees and shared gaming revenues.
    • The $100,000 license fee for iGaming Ontario is paid by all legal providers, with additional contributions from gaming revenues. This revenue supports local infrastructure, healthcare, education, and other essential services.
    • Opting for licensed providers ensures that a portion of the profits goes back to the community, unlike unlicensed providers who keep all profits for themselves.
  • Player Safety Measures:
    • iGaming Ontario mandates that players have access to robust Responsible Gaming tools, including deposit limits and other features.
    • These tools promote safer online sports betting experiences and help players stay in control of their spending.
    • Many Ontario brands implement similar safety measures on their “international” platforms, ensuring consistency in player protection.

Is Betsafe a legal Ontario betting site?

Yes, Betsson AB, the parent company of Betsafe, has expressed interest in obtaining a license for the Ontario market. As of the update on February 10, 2022, Betsson’s CEO confirmed that the Betsafe brand will apply for the Ontario license, as mentioned in the company’s year-end financial presentation. Given their commitment to regulatory compliance and their interest in key markets like Sweden and Denmark, it is likely that Betsafe will seek to operate as a legal and licensed Ontario betting site. Players in Ontario can anticipate being onboarded to the legal system upon the market launch in 2022.

Is bet365 a legal Ontario betting site?

Yes, bet365 has been granted a license for the Ontario market. On March 15, 2022, bet365 received its license, confirming its status as a legal Ontario betting site. If you already have an account with bet365 before the market opening on April 4, 2022, you can expect your account to be transitioned to the legal system. This allows bet365 to serve its existing customers in Ontario through the legal framework while continuing to operate in other provinces from the ‘grey market’.

Is Betway a legal Ontario betting site?

Betway has received its license to operate in Ontario, making it a legal Ontario betting site. As of April 19, 2022, Betway is officially authorized to offer its services in the Ontario market. If you already have an account with Betway before the market opening on April 4, 2022, you can expect your account to be transitioned to the legal system. Betway will continue to serve its existing customers in Ontario through the legal framework while also operating in other Canadian provinces from the ‘grey market’.

Is BetVictor a legal Ontario sportsbook?

While BetVictor has traditionally focused on sports betting in the UK and Ireland, they have also been active in serving the Canadian market for an extended period, primarily operating within the “grey” legal framework. Renowned for their partnerships with English Premier League clubs, they have accumulated a substantial customer base in Canada. Although there is no public confirmation, our understanding suggests that BetVictor is likely to submit an application for legal operation in Ontario through an iGaming license.

If approved, existing BetVictor players in Ontario will seamlessly transition to the legal market upon its scheduled opening in 2022. BetVictor will continue its services to other Canadian provinces from its Gibraltar jurisdiction. Notably, BetVictor has elevated its offerings in Ontario, particularly in providing competitive odds for NFL and NBA events (spreads & totals), boasting margins 20% lower than many other prominent brands. This positions BetVictor as a compelling choice for players both within and outside Ontario. For a comprehensive review of BetVictor’s services in the rest of Canada, you can refer to our detailed BetVictor review.

Is Casumo a legal Ontario sportsbook?

Casumo stands out as a relatively recent entrant into the global iGaming landscape, focusing on both casino and sports betting, with Canada being a prime target market. The introduction of its sports betting vertical, powered by the Kambi sportsbook platform, was initially rolled out in select national markets, including Canada. Our understanding suggests that Casumo is poised to submit an application for an iGaming Ontario license, aligning its operations with legal standards for a distinctive gaming experience.

While Casumo’s initial offerings in Ontario will be centered around online and live casino games, there are intentions to expand into the realm of sports betting in the future. Upon approval, existing Casumo players in Ontario will smoothly transition to the legal market upon its anticipated launch. Concurrently, Casumo will continue to cater to other Canadian provinces in the “grey market” from its jurisdiction in Malta, maintaining online sports betting options in those regions. For a detailed exploration of Casumo’s services in the rest of Canada, our comprehensive Casumo review provides valuable insights.

Is Sports Interaction (SIA) a legal Ontario sportsbook?

Sports Interaction has the full authorization to cater to all Canadian residents, including those in Ontario, operating from servers situated on Mohawk First Nations territory in Kahnawake. Initially, it was uncertain whether they would seek inclusion through an iGaming Ontario license or if a distinct legal arrangement would be established to integrate their brand with officially licensed operators in Ontario. An update as of April 2, 2022, confirms that Sports Interaction has indeed submitted its application to the AGCO, positioning itself as a licensed provider in the Ontario legal market while maintaining its services for the rest of the country through Kahnawake. For a comprehensive overview of Sports Interaction’s offerings in the rest of Canada and insights into its transition to the Entain sportsbook and casino platform in late 2023, refer to our Sports Interaction review.

Is Unibet a legal Ontario sportsbook?

As of late 2023, Unibet is considered a legal Ontario sportsbook. However, in the later part of 2023, the parent company, Kindred Group, made an announcement during its strategic review that the company would be withdrawing from its regulated North American markets. Consequently, Unibet is expected to exit Ontario and various U.S. states, likely by Q2 of 2024. Although Kindred Group had actively recruited for various positions related to Unibet in Ontario for the local and Canadian market, the company’s decision to withdraw will impact its presence in the region. Despite Unibet discontinuing its service in Ontario, it is anticipated that their Malta-based “offshore” site will persist in catering to the “rest of Canada” market, excluding Quebec.

Is ComeOn a legal Ontario sports betting?

ComeOn! has received its license to operate in Ontario. However, it’s important to note that, initially, they will only offer their online casino services in Ontario, with no sports betting available at the start. Nevertheless, ComeOn!’s online sportsbook will remain accessible to players in Canada outside Ontario. The plan is to add sports betting to their offerings within the legal market once their sportsbook supplier obtains an Ontario license. For more details, you can refer to the ComeOn! review for the rest of Canada.

Is Betsson a legal Ontario sportsbook?

No, the Betsson brand itself is not a legal online betting or gaming brand in Ontario. However, Betsson AB, the parent company of Betsson, owns and operates the Betsafe brand, which does have a license to operate legally in Ontario. Betsafe is the brand that Betsson AB has chosen to promote and offer its services in Canada, including Ontario. If you are interested in using their services in Ontario, you should go through the Betsafe platform, as it is the one authorized for operation in the province.

Is 10Bet a legal Ontario sportsbook?

10Bet is an established online sports betting brand with a historical focus on the Canadian market. Initially, there was no indication of whether 10Bet planned to secure a license for Ontario. However, through our contacts at 10Bet, who have a substantial number of Ontario-based players, we learned that they were considering applying for an Ontario license. In mid-February 2022, we received information that 10Bet intended to submit an application to become a legal online sportsbook provider in Ontario. At that time, 10Bet was already licensed in national markets such as the UK, Ireland, and Sweden, with an international iGaming license in Malta.

However, in the following weeks, 10Bet changed its strategy, ceasing operations in all of Canada from its Malta-based site and discontinuing the application process in Ontario. Currently, 10Bet has no plans to pursue the Ontario market. In subsequent months, 10Bet transitioned its international iGaming jurisdiction from Malta to the Isle of Man. They are now expanding 10Bet as a leading cryptocurrency sports betting site, catering to the “rest of Canada” market (excluding Ontario). While 10Bet no longer offers CAD accounts, it remains a top choice for cryptocurrency enthusiasts who prefer to bet directly in BTC, ETH, LTC, or USDT.

Which sportsbooks are exclusive to the legal Ontario market and not available in the rest of Canada?

Bally Bet, BetMGM, BetRivers, Caesars Sportsbook, DraftKings Sportsbook, FanDuel Sportsbook, PointsBet, and theScore Bet are exclusive to Ontario and do not operate “offshore” betting sites serving the rest of Canada in the “grey market.” This exclusivity is a result of the progression from the legalization of single-event betting in Canada through the establishment of the legal iGaming Ontario marketplace.

Is Bally Bet exclusively for the legal sportsbook market in Ontario, Canada?

Yes, Bally Bet is limited to Ontario. Initially, our information indicated that Bally’s Corporation would apply to partner with iGaming Ontario and introduce its ‘Bally Bet’ brand. Bally’s, a licensed sportsbook partner of the NHL, NBA, and MLB, aimed to leverage these league licenses in Ontario, in addition to their existing US state licenses. With a $100,000 license fee in Ontario and numerous bricks-and-mortar casino resorts across the US under the Bally’s name, entering Ontario seemed advantageous. Despite limited brand heritage in Canada, attracting Ontario visitors to their casino resorts and strengthening relationships with existing customers was anticipated. It’s surprising that other major US casino resort brands haven’t adopted a similar strategy. Read our Bally Bet Ontario review.

Is BetMGM exclusively a legal Ontario sportsbook, or does it operate elsewhere in Canada?

BetMGM is solely available in Ontario within Canada, lacking an “offshore” version. In March 2021, Entain, the online gambling giant, announced a partnership with the Responsible Gaming Council to research gaming and sports betting regulation in Canada. While the announcement didn’t explicitly state intentions to apply for an Ontario license, the likelihood increased, given Entain’s investment in partnering with Wayne Gretzky and Connor McDavid as brand ambassadors. BetMGM is expected to enter the Ontario market, given its presence in numerous US states and the strategic investment in brand ambassadors. People outside Ontario cannot play at BetMGM. Read our BetMGM Ontario review.

Is BetRivers exclusive to the legal Ontario market in Canada?

Yes, BetRivers is limited to Ontario within Canada and doesn’t serve the rest of the country from the “grey market.” Rush Street Interactive (RSI), operator of BetRivers and several US land-based casinos, entered the Ontario sports betting market. Although few media clippings covered this, job postings for RSI positions based in Toronto for various online betting-related roles hinted at their market entry. People outside Ontario are restricted from playing at BetRivers. Read our BetRivers Ontario review.

Does Caesars Sportsbook serve only the legal iGaming market in Ontario?

Yes, Caesars Sportsbook is exclusive to Ontario within Canada. On March 9, 2022, visitors to their main US landing page could select ‘Ontario’ as a betting option, redirecting them to a page collecting email addresses. Despite Caesars’ recent approach to online betting, selling the William Hill brand and assets, and its limited brand heritage in Canada, they aimed to attract new players with an interesting platform. Caesars Sportsbook lacks an “offshore” site, restricting access to Ontario residents only. Read our Caesars Sportsbook Ontario review.

Is DraftKings Sportsbook legal only in Ontario within Canada?

Yes, DraftKings Sportsbook is exclusive to Ontario, intending to launch its sports betting site and mobile app in April 2022. DraftKings’ CEO expressed excitement about Canada’s expansion potential during an earnings conference call in February 2021. While already legal in over a dozen US states, DraftKings serves Canadians through its DFS service, establishing a database of interested sports fans across the country. DraftKings Ontario Sportsbook is restricted to Ontario, with no “offshore” version for the rest of Canada. Read our DraftKings Ontario review.

Is FanDuel Sportsbook limited to Ontario within Canada?

Yes, FanDuel Sportsbook is exclusive to Ontario. Owned by Flutter, a major online gambling and sports betting company, FanDuel already operates its daily fantasy sports games in Canada. Despite limited corporate commentary on an Ontario license application, it was anticipated due to Flutter’s ownership. FanDuel Sportsbook Ontario was issued its license on March 11, 2022. People outside Ontario are unable to play at the FanDuel Canada sportsbook. Read our FanDuel Ontario review.

Does PointsBet serve all of Canada or just Ontario?

No, PointsBet is exclusive to Ontario within Canada. As an Australian iGaming startup, PointsBet has solely operated in legal sports betting markets, never in the “grey” market. PointsBet entered Ontario, hiring Nic Sulsky as Chief Commercial Officer and making key local hires. PointsBet Ontario will not serve the rest of Canada, maintaining a focus on legal markets. Read our PointsBet Ontario review.

Is theScore Bet available only in Ontario or throughout Canada?

Yes, theScore Bet is limited to Ontario, without an “offshore” version. Score Media and Gaming announced its entry into the Ontario market on a downtown Toronto billboard the day after Bill C-218’s passing. Despite being acquired by Penn National Gaming, theScore Bet plans a significant presence in Ontario, evident in the ongoing hiring and development of a future headquarters. People outside Ontario cannot play at theScore Bet. Read our theScore Bet Ontario review.

Legal Ontario sportsbook brands with “offshore” versions for the rest of Canada that we do NOT recommend.

888sport, Bet99, Bwin, LeoVegas, Pinnacle, PokerStars Sports, and TonyBet are all licensed to serve Ontario and have offshore sportsbook sites to cater to the rest of Canada from the “grey market.” However, we do not recommend these brands for various reasons.

888sport is a legal Ontario sportsbook that also serves the rest of Canada from Gibraltar.

Despite never offering Canadian Dollar accounts, 888sport has a significant player base across Canada. If 888sport were to seek an Ontario license, they would likely need to provide players with the ability to play in their native currency. With numerous national licenses in Europe and expansion in the US through partnerships, we anticipate 888sport applying for an Ontario sports betting license. In this case, all 888sport Ontario players would likely transition into the legal system soon after market launch. Update March 3, 2022: 888 confirms it has secured its iGaming Ontario license. Read our 888sport Ontario review.

Bet99 is a legal Ontario betting site that also serves the rest of Canada via Kahnawake.

Bet99 can already serve all of Canada through its license with the Kahnawake Gaming Commission on Mohawk territory in Quebec. While there’s no indication they will invest in an additional license to be an officially ‘legal’ Ontario provider, it is expected that Bet99 will apply to serve Ontario. The Canada Manager for Kindred Group noted that the owner of Bet99 had expressed interest in selling it. Update October 11/2022: Bet99 is licensed by the AGCO and live with its iGaming Ontario offering. Read our Bet99 Ontario review to see how its offering compares to other Ontario operators. (Not great, we’re afraid.)

Bwin is a legal Ontario betting site that serves the rest of Canada via Kahnawake.

As part owner of ‘BetMGM,’ Entain also fully owns the leading international betting brand ‘Bwin.’ With international brand recognition, especially among soccer fans in Canada, Bwin holds national licenses in several European countries. It’s possible that Entain could seek an Ontario iGaming license. Update April 2, 2022: Bwin has secured its iGaming Ontario license. Read our Bwin Ontario review. Bwin continues to operate in the Canadian “grey market,” now from Kahnawake.

LeoVegas is a legal Ontario sportsbook that serves the rest of Canada via Malta.

Swedish iGaming brand LeoVegas has been marketing to Canadians from the ‘grey market’ for many years. With a history of gaining licenses in key markets, we expect LeoVegas to apply for an iGaming Ontario license. This would allow LeoVegas Ontario to onboard all its existing players to the legal market. We also anticipate them continuing to serve other Canadian provinces from the ‘grey market’ through their international iGaming jurisdiction in Malta. (Update on November 11, 2021: LeoVegas confirms in their 2021 Q3 release that they are in discussions on how the regulations for the Ontario market may be structured. Update March 15, 2022, iGB reported that LeoVegas has achieved its Ontario licensure) Read our LeoVegas Ontario review.

Pinnacle is a legal Ontario betting site that serves the rest of Canada via Curacao.

Pinnacle has been catering to Canada, including Ontario, from the ‘grey market’ since the late 1990s. Known for its unique approach to sports betting, Pinnacle has generally opted to stay in the ‘grey’ market from Curacao rather than obtaining national or sub-national gaming licenses in many jurisdictions. The exception to this was their entry into the regulated market of Sweden, indicating a likelihood of entering the Ontario regulated market. Given Pinnacle’s substantial Ontario player base, obtaining a license and paying local taxes makes strategic sense, allowing them to retain these players. (Update September 8, 2022: Pinnacle has indeed gained its Ontario license.)

PokerStars Sports is a legal Ontario sportsbook that also serves the rest of Canada via Malta.

Operated by Toronto-based ‘The Stars Group,’ PokerStars is one of the world’s most recognizable gaming brands. After merging with Flutter in 2020, PokerStars, alongside Flutter’s main sportsbook brand FanDuel, is expected to be a significant player in the Ontario market. With a vast existing player base of poker enthusiasts across Canada, PokerStars has expanded its offerings to include casino and sportsbook verticals on its .com site. To fully leverage its player database, PokerStars is anticipated to apply for all iGaming Ontario licenses applicable to its business lines. (Update June 30, 2022: PokerStars has indeed achieved its license.)

TonyBet is a legal Ontario sportsbook that serves the rest of Canada via Kahnawake.

TonyBet, an Estonia-based sportsbook and casino brand, entered the Canadian ‘grey market’ shortly after the passage of Bill C-218, allowing single-event sports betting. Despite a late entry, TonyBet demonstrated a commitment to the Canadian market through significant media buys and advertising efforts. Surprisingly, TonyBet has gained its Ontario license, making it their first foray into a regulated market outside the Baltic region. However, its uncompetitive odds margins and platform issues warrant caution. (Read our TonyBet Canada review for more details.)

Sportsbooks NOT in the legal Ontario market, but that serve the rest of Canada (not recommended by legalbetontario).

Among the largest and most recognizable online sportsbook brands in Canada, Coolbet, Parimatch, VBET, and William Hill have refrained from entering or maintaining Ontario licenses. While they comply with Ontario rules and regulations by stopping their services within the province, these brands continue to operate from their offshore jurisdictions to serve the rest of Canada.

Will CoolBet become a legal Ontario betting site?

CoolBet, having operated its free-to-play site in Canada for several years, made significant recent investments in advertising, targeting a considerable number of Ontario-based players. Given the ongoing marketing relationships and the importance of the Canadian market, CoolBet was expected to apply for an Ontario license to be ready for the market launch in 2022. However, CoolBet has pulled out of the legal Ontario market, continuing to serve the “rest of Canada” from their “offshore” site. (Read our CoolBet Canada review for more details.)

Will Parimatch be a legal Ontario sportsbook?

Founded in Ukraine, Parimatch is an international betting brand with significant partnerships in soccer and other sports. While initially intending to apply for a licensed Ontario sportsbook, developments in Ukraine may have altered these plans, as Parimatch has not gained a license as of September 2023., however, continues to serve the rest of Canada from the ‘grey market’ jurisdiction of Curacao. Despite this, Parimatch is not recommended.

Will VBET apply for a license to be a legal Ontario betting site?

Despite VBET’s brand awareness through soccer club sponsorships and license applications in several European countries, VBET is not expected to apply for an Ontario iGaming license as of 2022. Therefore, existing VBET customers in Ontario will not be transitioned to the legal market. (Update October 10, 2022: VBET has stopped serving Ontario players.)

Is William Hill going to be a legal Ontario sportsbook?

William Hill, recently acquired by 888 Holdings, has undergone significant changes. Despite the sale including the UK and European operations, William Hill’s online bookmaker operations have significant brand heritage in Canada. While initially applying for a license to become a legal Ontario sportsbook, William Hill has stopped accepting new Ontario players as of H2 2022. (Read our William Hill Canada review for more details.)

Black market sportsbooks operating without a license in Ontario

Several sportsbooks, including 1XBET, Bodog, and DafaBet, are functioning as black market entities in Ontario, providing their services without local licenses. These brands extend their operations to the rest of Canada from offshore gaming jurisdictions due to the absence of regulations in other Canadian provinces.

Is 1XBET a legal Ontario sports betting site?

1XBET, originating in Russia, has a dubious reputation as a scam site. Despite facing controversies, including the revocation of its UK license and severed partnerships with prominent football clubs, 1XBET remains visible through sponsorships like FC Barcelona and the Italian Serie A. It is expected to continue serving Canada solely from the ‘grey market’ in Curacao, bypassing the application for a legal Ontario license. Given the brand’s controversies and violations, Canadian players are strongly advised to avoid 1XBET. (Read our 1XBET Canada review for more information.)

Will Bodog be a legal Ontario sportsbook?

Bodog, operational in Ontario and all of Canada since the late 1990s from Antigua & Barbuda, has not pursued local market licenses historically. While not expected to apply for an Ontario iGaming license, the possibility remains if regulatory loopholes close. Bodog’s focus on the Canadian market and potential regulatory changes may influence its decision, though it remains a slim possibility. Consequently, Bodog Ontario players will not transition to the legal market in 2022.

Is Dafabet a legal Ontario sports betting site?

Primarily focused on the Asian market, Dafabet has gained visibility through soccer club sponsorships. While serving Canada from the ‘grey market,’ Dafabet has no track record of obtaining individual licenses for local iGaming markets. The expectation is that Dafabet will not serve Ontario legally.

Impact of Ontario regulations on online sports betting brands

With the evolving regulatory landscape in Ontario and potential regulations in other provinces, several online betting brands serving Canada from the “grey market” have exited this space, ceasing operations for customers in Canada. This includes 32Red, BetFair, BetHard, MarathonBet, and NetBet.

Is 32Red going to be a legal Ontario iGaming brand?

Despite early indications suggesting a positive outcome, the Kindred Group, 32Red’s operator, has only introduced Unibet to the legal Ontario market. As 32Red has not applied for a license and no longer serves the “rest of Canada” from its main site, its status remains uncertain.

Will Betfair look to serve the legal Ontario sports betting market?

While Betfair previously operated from the ‘grey market’ in Canada, the lack of recent activity suggests a diminished chance of its return. The parent company, Flutter, emphasizes its US sportsbook provider, FanDuel, indicating that Betfair may not pursue an Ontario license.

Will Betfred become a legal Ontario betting site?

Despite Betfred’s brand familiarity in Ontario through past partnerships, its absence from the ‘grey market’ in Canada and the lack of existing players make it unlikely to apply for an Ontario license. The anticipated competition and market conditions further reduce the likelihood of Betfred entering the legal Ontario market.

Will BetHard become a legal Ontario sportsbook?

After its acquisition by Esports Entertainment Group, BetHard, once interested in the Canadian market, will no longer actively seek new players in Canada. This decision rules out the possibility of BetHard applying for the iGaming Ontario license.

Will ESPN BET operate as a legal Ontario sportsbook?

The likelihood of ESPN BET entering Ontario is essentially nonexistent. Owned by Penn Entertainment, the operator of theScore Bet in Ontario, ESPN BET’s entry would incur additional licensing costs, face stiff competition, and dilute the brand. Thus, it makes no sense for ESPN BET to operate in Ontario.

Is Fanatics Sportsbook available in Ontario?

As of January 2, 2024, Fanatics Sportsbook has not obtained a license from the AGCO, making it ineligible to operate as a legal Ontario sportsbook. While there is a possibility that Fanatics might apply for a license, their current focus on legal US markets and the saturated sportsbook market in Ontario make it less likely.

Is MarathonBet going to become one of many legal Ontario sportsbooks?

MarathonBet, having served Canada from the ‘grey market,’ especially through Curacao, never emphasized the Canadian market. Despite national licenses in other regions, MarathonBet is not expected to apply for an Ontario license, likely continuing to serve Canada, excluding Ontario, from the ‘grey market.’ (Update 2023: MarathonBet has stopped serving all of Canada.)

Will NetBet apply to become a legal Ontario sportsbook?

NetBet, a sports betting operator with a history of gaining national licenses, including the UK, France, and Romania, previously served Canada from the ‘grey market.’ While no official news on NetBet’s intentions in Ontario is available, there is an understanding that NetBet will apply for a license to serve Ontario legally. The competitive market, however, may influence their plans. (Update: NetBet had stopped serving players in the rest of Canada as of October 2022, and as of November 2022, they received their AGCO license but have yet to go live on the iGaming Ontario platform, thus currently being out of the Canadian market.)

Legal age for sports betting in Ontario

The legal age for sports betting in Ontario is 19 or older, whether participating online or at a sportsbook location.

If you have questions about a sports betting brand not covered here, contact us

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