Bitcoin: Sports betting with virtual currency

You’ve certainly heard about it on the internet and on TV: Bitcoin, that mysterious and seemingly continuously record-breaking form of money that simultaneously feels futuristic, exciting and incredibly intimidating. But Bitcoin is hardly something to be feared; in fact, this cryptocurrency is something of a massive boon for U.S. bettors. Bitcoin sports betting is a viable option for those in the ’States whose local laws on NFL wagering are in flux. Read on for a little more about a whole new way to get playing!

What is Bitcoin?

Bitcoin is a proper noun, the name of the most widely-used cryptocurrency in the world. Though a few other types of cryptocurrency exist – Ethercoin is widely recognized as second most popular – Bitcoin is said to represent 90% of all cryptocurrency value internationally. Thus it may be thought of as the market leader in this sort of currency.

What is cryptocurrency?

Nice follow-up question. Though the biggest difference between cryptocurrency and other forms of more-easily recognized legal tender is in its purely virtual existence, the main feature that distinguishes one from the other is that cryptocurrency is decentralized, i.e. it is not issued and valued/devalued by any one government, bank or group of financial interests.

And like any such cash-for-commodity transaction in futures, stocks, bonds or currency trading, the value of Bitcoin is driven by investment. The more frequently individuals buy Bitcoin (and to some extent transact business with Bitcoin), the more value it attains. Of course, this also makes Bitcoin quite the, likesay, thrill ride for investors. Bitcoin’s value has proven to be well more stable than the next-leading cryptocurrency, and it has still seen its share of precipitous drops and breathtaking rises.

Does this mean that Bitcoin is a risk?

Yes, but. If all you’re interested in doing is depositing and withdrawing from sportsbook sites, you shouldn’t lose any money of significance whatsoever. A Bitcoin transaction can easily be undertaken – or at least the bits when the Bitcoin goes to and from your traditional currency-based account – in under five minutes. Though a first deposit with Bitcoin at any online merchant and a withdrawal to a currency-based bank account can take up to 30 minutes, the value of the bitcoin will not change in that time.

How do I buy Bitcoin?

Simply visit a Bitcoin “e-wallet”-type site and make a deposit as though you were in PayPal, Skrill or similar. Deposit via credit card, debit card or checking account and the amount will be converted into Bitcoin at the going rate. Be advised that a charge for converting to/from a national currency may be incurred.

Also note that as of January 1, 2018, certain US-based banks (and therefore the credit cards they issue) will not process a transaction involving the purchase of bitcoin.

Is Bitcoin legal to use at sportsbooks?

Yes, sir. As Bitcoin is beholden to no government or financial institution, no nation can truly forbid transactions with the virtual currency. (Note that this isn’t quite how the current prevailing national law on online gambling is worded, but the end result is the same.) We can’t truly expect the majority of “Bricks-and-mortar” sportsbooks to accept payment in Bitcoin by the mid-2020s, but online sportsbooks are well ahead of the curve here.

How do I deposit with Bitcoin at an online sportsbook?

Visit a sportsbook which accepts Bitcoin. Sports betting sites that do should have a clearly-marked option for Bitcoin deposits in the “cashier” section of the given website. Enter the amount you wish to deposit, and you’ll be given a “bitcoin address”, actually a long string of algorithm-generated letters and numbers. This bitcoin address is entered into the appropriate field of your Bitcoin e-wallet account – for purposes such as these, the appropriate field in which to enter the address will be obvious.

On first deposit, a few extra in-house security checks may be made and this could delay the deposit by a half-hour or so.

Which sportsbooks take Bitcoin?

More and more every day, because operators of online sportsbooks are finally realizing the freedom that Bitcoin can bring to Canadian and U.S. players in particular, but also residents of many other nations.

NFLbets can personally vouch for the partnering sites listed on this page, but players needn’t rely solely on our word, either: Each has been quality-tested for fairness and security by at least one internationally-recognized auditing firm, and all have longstanding history as providers of good NFL bookmaking.

In the final analysis, Bitcoin sports betting is an excellent way for punters to pay, play and win!