How to set up an online betting account in South Africa
You know pretty much all there is to know about online sports betting in South Africa – all you need now is an account to bet from.
If you’re a newbie, then this may be a daunting step but it’s a piece of cake in truth and should take no longer than ten minutes to complete.
Follow our guide if you need to, this the common procedure used by the online bookies in South Africa we have recommended:
1, You’ve decided on your bookmaker so find and click on the link which reads ‘Open an account’.
2, Next you’ll need to enter your personal details into the on-screen registration form. This will include:
- Name, address, date of birth, mobile number, valid email address
- Account preferences such as preferred account currency, how the odds will be displayed (decimals/fractions)
- A username and password unique to you, as well as a security question and answer.
3, It’s most likely you’ll need to activate your account. This is achieved by accessing the e-mail sent to your registered email address by the betting company. Simply click on the email verification link and from here the account set-up should be complete.
- The international bookmakers which cater for South African bettors should all accept the South Afrcian Rand (ZAR). However, if they don’t, you may need to consider the use of an e-wallet to deposit funds – the likes of Neteller or Skrill are known to be effective and cheap way to transfer monies from one currency to another.
- You’ll be asked to deposit a minimum amount upon set-up; this is typically a rounded figure such as 10 ZAR.
- Should you have any difficulties registering your account contact the customer service team that who should be able to assist you in an efficient manner.
But is it legal to wager money online as a South African resident? Well, the National Gambling Act 2004 ensures any type of online casino gambling within the country, including gambling via offshore servers, is strictly prohibited.
This remains the case today but given the power of the internet, it’s not difficult for betting companies to still make themselves widely available to the South African market by offering promotions and bonuses in Rand. It’s therefore very common for players in South Africa to still play at online casinos.
Online sports betting, meanwhile, is fully permitted under the law.
It’s worth noting also if any side were to face legal action for going against the regulations, it’d be the betting firm taking the the rap, and not you, the player – no incidences of punishment or otherwise has been noted against an individual playing on an online casino, with the focus of the law designed to deal with the issue at its root and not further down.
Online sports betting, meanwhile, is fully permitted under the law, providing it’s with a bookmaker that been granted a license to operate in the country, a system that can be tough to bypass.
So long as it holds the necessary license, you are as free as Bryan Habana running down the wing to wager on any number of sports be it soccer, rugby, cricket or perhaps even tennis, golf or cycling.
The future of online betting in South Africa
It appears the booming industry that is online sports betting will continue to grow in South Africa, at least for the time being.
But a willingness to bring online casino and poker gambling within the law, could see changes made to the current entire online landscape, including that of online sportsbooks.
The National Gambling Amendment Act of 2008 is currently being worked through the South African courts with the view to legalising online casino gambling and establishing it alongside online sports betting.
However, it is a move which continues to be opposed by anti-gambling groups, land based casinos and most significantly, a government who remain firm in their stance that online casino gambling has the potential for harm among those with addiction problems, as well as continuing concerns with how to safely regulate online casino gambling and prevent criminal activity arising from the industry.
Free Bets, No Deposit and other bonuses
With online sports betting set to eventually surpass horse racing in the popularity and revenue stakes in South Africa, the market is only going to become more and more saturated.
Perfect opportunity then for you to become familiar with the range of different ‘Welcome Bonus’ or ‘Free Bets’ that try to win your custom, as a new bettor, or regain your custom even.
As much as a ‘free bet’ can yield, in effect, free cash, it’s good to get into the habit of checking whether there are strings attached to the offer in question also. For example, the money won via a free bet may need to be rolled over a certain amount of times before the amount can be withdrawn from your betting purse.
In general, the introductory offers are a good way of seeing how a bookie operates first hand, while as a newbie, it’s a very useful way of becoming accustomed to the betting world without risking your own funds first. Look out for big sports events or fixtures to take advantage of some of the best promotions.
Below, we’ve listed a few bonuses from South African bookies that have caught our eagle eye, ready for you to cash in on!
Most popular sports bet on in South Africa
While soccer, cricket and rugby are considered the most popular sports to watch and play in South Africa, it’s horse racing which yields a lot of attention in terms of online betting. Bettors have a magnitude of events to wager money on such as Fairview and Durbansville and are able to so a daily or a weekly basis by betting on a particular horse to win or finish in the top 3 places.
Tennis, golf and cycling are all sports continuing to grow in popularity but are in no way as popular as the three mainstays, soccer, cricket and rugby union, three sports engrained into the history of the country.
Rugby Union offers up many an opportunity for a bet with games from Super Rugby, the Currie Cup, the Pro 14, the World Rugby Sevens, as well as the international series featuring Siya Kolisi’s Springboks, all worthy of a flutter.
The relentless nature of the cricket calendar means there’s a meaningful tournament or series featuring The Proteas in either the test, one day, or Twenty20 arena, while the glamour of the Indian Premier League leaves you with every chance of you filling your cricket fix.
As well as the Absa Premiership, the domestic league, South Africa’s love for the global phenomenon that is England’s Premier League, makes for soccer featuring high on the betting agenda of most South Africans.
Kevin Anderson is a popular tennis player from South Africa.
Best Soccer betting sites
Betway are on their way to building a betting empire in Europe and hold licenses in a number of other parts of the world too, including South Africa. You’ll see for yourself but they’re known for taking their soccer/football seriously and by offering the most up-to-date odds and a range of betting markets across a range of different leagues, you’re always likely to find the game you’re looking for.
Sportingbet is certainly one of the go-to online sportsbooks for punters in South Africa betting on football due to the company’s long standing in the industry. The daily list of matches covered by sportingbet extensive, plus for every single match listed you’re able to tap into a designated page featuring stats and percentages, a useful touch if you’re new to the world of online sports betting.
Among the well-known betting firms in England, BetVictor is a betting site that has catered for South African bettors for some time now. As such, it is widely used in the country, especially by those with a keen interest in the ‘beautiful game’, known as football, or as is the case in South Africa, soccer. Regular promotions such as their best price guarantee and accumulator insurance on football accumulators featuring 5+ games serve as an instant pull for soccer fans across the country.
Soccer betting in South Africa
125% up to R1000
South African Betting Market
Since there is a route, albeit strict, for foreign bookmakers to gain a license in South Africa, in addition to English being the primary language of natives, the market heavily features sites based in the country and also those outside of it.
Domestic sites such as Hollywood Bets, World Sports betting, Sportsbet, SunBet and BET.co.za are instantly attractive for natives since everything geared is already toward South African punters and there are no issues regarding using the Rand or needing to change the language settings to Afrikaans, for example.
Sportbooks based overseas – Betway and BetVictor - are all now wholly optimized toward the South African player which, along with their reputable name in sports betting across the world, has resulted in international sites taking more of a stranglehold of the market.
All the sportsbooks will factor in something different to make them stick out from the crowd, be it regarding odds, markets, live betting, bonuses etc. But so long as the sportsbook used is safe, secure, and legal - by this we mean fully licensed – then you cannot go wrong, regardless of its origin.
We’ve made life easy for you by pointing you in the direction of bookmakers rated as the best to use in South Africa.
Betting sites from the UK
With the UK the hotbed of online sports betting, it’s natural for punters from all corners of the globe to want to see what British Bookies have to offer. And this is no different in South Africa where English is widely used.
However, Betway and BetVictor remain two of a few to operate in South Africa, at least for the time being. The last few years has witnessed both bet365 and William Hill pull the plug on their involvement in the South African market citing “regulatory reasons” for doing so.
It’s hoped that a relaxation in the licensing system will see both, one day, make a return to the betting market in South Africa, providing the bettor with more choice whilst adding extra competition to those already making up the market.
FAQ: Online betting in South Africa
Is online sports betting legal in South Africa?
Yes, you are free to bet online in South Africa on the basis the bookmaker has been a granted to license to
Am I permitted to gamble at an online casino?
The National Gambling Act 2004 prohibits anybody within South Africa from partaking in online casino gambling, including offshore servers. However, the law can do little to prevent from players gambling via an online casino and so it still remains very popular in South Africa.
Do I need to pay tax on my profits when betting online in South Africa?
No, any winnings made from recreational betting are not subject to taxation.