Online Sports Betting in Canada
In Canadian sports betting, until recently, gamblers had to combine two or more bets in one ticket or make a correct prediction of the outcome of at least two games to qualify for victory. To combat this and prevent illegal gambling, the state gambling law has been amended with some of the legislation called the Safe and Regulated Sports Betting Act or Bill C-218.
On June 29, 2021, Bill C-218 in Canada received royal consent and officially entered into force a few months later. On August 27, 2021, the single-player sports betting was definitely allowed. With the amendments, the provinces and territories of Canada have been given the right to conduct and manage sports betting at one event applying their own jurisdictions. By doing so, Canadian gamblers will be able to place bets in a regulated and safe environment, whether through online sports betting or physical establishments. And as this is the case, many provinces did not take long to begin work on providing these options to their residents.
Canada Sports Betting by Province
August 27 was the official launch date for sports betting at an event in Canada. This actually means that from that date the provinces can legalize sports betting on one game. The federal government will not regulate sports betting; each province may or may not legalize the betting of a game and regulate it as it sees fit. Here's an update on how each province is planning to legalize sports betting:
The province of Ontario is expected to be a gambling center after Bill C-218 was passed into law. With a population of 14.5 million people, this is a huge market with a lot of potential. The presence of major casino operators, including PointsBets, DraftKings, theScore and others, is also a major driver for expanding Ontario's gambling scene.
The Ontario Commission on Alcohol and Games (AGCO) has created iGaming Ontario, The new product will monitor the iGaming market in Ontario. iGaming can be shortly defined as everything you bet on online, including sports betting and online casino gambling. iGaming Ontario will be also responsible for concluding agreements with external sports betting operators wishing to work in the province. Together, AGCO and iGaming Ontario are working for an open and regulated place for online sports betting in Ontario.
The western province was at the forefront of the single-game legalization debate. They have excitedly announced that the local lottery commission Play Now would implement the single-game bet on August 27, the very first day it was allowed to do so. The country-run lottery and sports betting commission, Play Now will be able to easily add a single game betting. Currently, Play Now will be the only legal betting option for British Columbia bettors, but at some point in the future, additional operators may enter the province.
Loto Québec, the province's lottery corporation, has offered sports betting that has been legal in Canada for decades. The corporation announced that it starts offering betting on an event on August 27. Betting on an event can be available both online and at lottery outlets in the province from the first day when it is legal. It is not yet known whether foreign sports bookmakers will come to the province.
The Atlantic provinces include New Brunswick, Prince Edward Island, Nova Scotia and the provinces of Newfoundland and Labrador. For all of them lottery games are administered by the Atlantic Lottery which includes sports betting. Atlantic Lottery officials have publicly declared they can easily add a game bet to their existing money offers, They will do so as soon as the provinces legalize it. However, the provinces themselves have not yet announced when they plan to legalize gambling, as permitted by C-218.
The three Canadian provinces of Manitoba, Saskatchewan and Alberta are located in the middle of the country, They have merged to form the Western Lottery Corporation (WSLC), which manages lottery games and sports betting. The Sport Select is the existing parlay-style sports bookmaker, managed by WSLC and available in the prairie provinces. In fact, Alberta has its own online casino called Play Alberta. Play Alberta is run by the province itself. Its officials have declared their plans for a brand new, Alberta-specific online sports betting product which will exist as part of Play Alberta. It also seems likely that outside sports betting organizations will also come to Alberta at some point in the future. The other provinces and territories have not indicated whether they will offer single-player betting, but we assume that it will eventually make its way to all the prairie provinces.
The Latest News
The online world in Canada was shaken when it was announced that different provinces would introduce their own options for one-event sports betting. But what has happened since then? Can it be said that these launches have been successful and provide gamblers with what they want from sports betting?
Well, good news have already started to come. Ontario Lottery and Gaming Corporation published information that 3.5 million bets have accepted since August 27. A total of 45% of these bets are made on football events. 30% of the bets are for baseball, while soccer was with 18% of the bets made in Ontario since August 27. The popular online betting site PointsBet has announced a partnership with Curling Canada. Curling is a huge sport in Canada as a whole, with 13 million fans tuned in to watch events each year. The announcement of a partnership between the two brands was marked as a concerted effort to try to attract these spectators to make sports bets on an event in the future.
Which Sportbooks are coming to Canada?
The regulatory process is just beginning, The structure of licensing has not yet been determined by any province. So it is too early to say definitively whether sports bookmakers will enter the Canadian market. However, here are some of the big sports betting brands that have publicly announced their interest and / or intentions to try to gain access to the Canadian market if they are allowed to do so. BetRivers may be one of the newer brands to join the race to enter the Canadian market recently, but several others have shown interest, including: Score Bet, Point Bet, BetMGM, FanDuel, DraftKings, Hard Rock, and more.
Act C-218 will amend Canada's Penal Code to make gamblers legally bet on the result of a single sport. Simply put, the bettor who makes a bet only needs to choose a team, decide the amount of the bet and then make that bet. Instead of having to use an offshore betting platform, bettors can place their bets through regulated online and land-based casinos in Canada.