Top Tips to find the Best Online Betting Sites in India

The Indian online sports betting industry is a quite complex market that can be difficult for an average punter to understand. The underlying currents and the dynamics of the market can make or break a person’s fortune. The industry has been experiencing an on-going war of words between lawmakers and the millions of sports fans, with no significant developments regarding the legal status of online gambling in India. Sports gambling faces a lot of criticism in the country, which has fuelled negative sentiments in the minds of ordinary folks. The innumerable controversies associated with illegal bookmakers, including match-fixing, have only compounded this negative image amongst the law-abiding public. Despite these various challenges, sports betting continues to be a vital part of the Indian gambling community.

It is especially fascinating that Indian punters continue to wager on their favourite matches through both online and offline sportsbooks. Recent statistics show that the popularity of sports betting has increased exponentially, and newer bettors are coming to the fray by accessing online bookmakers for their wagering needs. So, how do you find the top bookmakers in India? Is it legal to access an online bookmaker in the country to wager on your favourite matches? What are the basic qualities that you should consider when choosing an online bookie? Read our detailed guide to find the best bookmaker sites in India that offer safe and reliable platforms for online sports betting.

Best Online Betting Websites in India for 2020

Betway
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Last Update 02 / 12 / 2020
BOOKIE VISIT SITE
Bet365
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**Available to new customers only. Make a qualifying deposit of ₹400 or more and claim the offer within 30 days of registering your account to qualify for 15% of that amount in Bet Credits, up to a maximum of ₹4,000. Once claimed, your Bet Credits will be held in your account balance and are non-withdrawable.
*Geo restrictions apply. Funded account or bet placed 24 hours prior to event required to access.

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Dafabet
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Legality & Regulations of Online Betting Websites in India

Online betting in India - regulation

There are numerous reasons for the apprehension and worries associated with gambling in general. Controversies surrounding sports betting are not only prevalent in India, but other nations also face several issues when it comes to hosting an open and transparent platform for betting on the sports market. Match-fixing is one of the primary concerns for almost all sporting organisations across the world, followed by money laundering and other illegal activities that diminish or hinder the smooth functioning of a country’s economy.

All forms of betting are considered illegal in most parts of India, which means that operators and punters are not legally allowed to indulge in any gambling activities. Bookmakers are especially warned about the consequences of flouting the prescribed laws related to sports betting, where the authorities have made it illegal for operators to maintain or offer any kind of sportsbook to Indian citizens. Therefore, if any local operator or a bookmaker promises to provide you with a regulated service with an Indian license, make an extra effort to verify their authorisations, as they are probably an illegal organisation.

However, some states in India have special gaming laws that are designed to offer a basic sportsbook for enthusiasts. Despite the blanket ban on all forms of sports betting, some local bookmakers do provide odds on cricket matches, along with other sporting categories, thereby catering to the insatiable appetites of Indian bettors. Nevertheless, several illegal bookmakers operate under the radar, which makes it extremely difficult for punters to find a good-quality and reliable operator in the country.

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*18+; T&Cs apply to each offer.
**18+; Available to new customers only. Make a qualifying deposit of ₹400 or more and claim the offer within 30 days of registering your account to qualify for 15% of that amount in Bet Credits, up to a maximum of ₹4,000. Once claimed, your Bet Credits will be held in your account balance and are non-withdrawable.*Geo restrictions apply. Funded account or bet placed 24 hours prior to event required to access.

Parameters That We Use to Monitor and Rank the Top Online Bookies

We have worked with hundreds of online bookies, which has given us a fair idea for measuring how each bookmaker is committed to the Indian market. We use several unique parameters to analyse and deduce the quality of an Indian betting site, even if they operate from an offshore jurisdiction. Online betting in India can be risky, especially due to the limited number of local options available, which is why our sportsbook reviews are designed to offer you the most detailed information on the best bookmaker sites. The following are some of the criteria that we use to rate online bookies:

Licensing Attributes of An Indian Betting Site

There are several positive signs from the authorities that point to impending changes being made in the regulatory structure to make sportsbooks more secure and accessible for the sports-crazy nation. Due to the rising popularity of underground sports gambling that occurs without the consent of the authorities, it is even more critical for the Government to curb illegal activities and try to portray the sports industry in a better light.

Of course, there are various laws in place to curb cricket betting in India, but as far as online bookmakers are concerned, punters do have the option of betting on their favourite events using the best online betting sites that cater to the Indian market. Many established online bookies provide a sportsbook specifically for Indian bettors, as such companies operate with offshore licenses. While these top betting sites don’t have a license in India, they are not blocked. Therefore, punters can take advantage of loopholes in existing gambling laws to bet on their favourite matches via online betting companies, without worrying about the implications of their actions.

Ensuring That the Sports Betting Sites You Visit Are Safe and Secure

Many issues, apart from the legal and licensing aspects of sportsbooks, can be detrimental to the safety and security of your personal information. You should be able to count on the safety of your funds, get a proper resolution to your complaints, and keep your private information secure from prying eyes. There should also be no conflict of interest between you and the bookmaker, as sports betting is similar to investing in any other financial product that is available in the market.

You can verify the security aspect of a site by ensuring that the website is encrypted using at least 128-bit SSL protocols or any other military-grade encryption. All our recommended sports betting sites in India adopt the most advanced encryption protocols to ensure that there is no lapse in security on their websites. The websites must also display evidence of being audited by independent third-party auditors, such as the EGBA, ESSA, eCOGRA, and Thawte, alongside promote responsible gambling policies through programs such as GamCare and GamStop. Independent arbitration services through providers such as the IBAS is an added advantage that will help you to count on assistance from an independent arbitration service in case of a dispute between you and your bookmaker.

FIND THE BEST BOOKMAKER FOR YOU

Account Signup & Verification for Betting Online in India

To open an account at a sports betting website, a user must enter his/her personal information and a valid email address at the time of signing up. Once the email address is verified, the user can deposit money into the account and start betting. Although bookmakers don’t usually ask their clients to verify their accounts before placing a bet, we recommend you get your account verified before making a deposit. Online cricket bookmakers have different policies when it comes to processing a withdrawal, but all companies have made it mandatory for their clients to verify their accounts before a withdrawal can be processed.

The most important aspect of opening an account at any sports betting company is the process of verifying your identity. All regulated bookmakers are required to collect several personal and financial details from their customers to satisfy the various gambling guidelines that are prescribed in their licenses. Sports betting is only available to punters who have attained the legal age of gambling in their countries of origin or residence. The age of a punter is typically verified through a national identifying document, while the address is verified through a bank statement or a utility bill. Here is a step-by-step tutorial that outlines the entire process of signing up, verification, and placing a bet.

  1. Open an account by signing up with your email address and a preferred password.
  2. Enter your personal information, such as date of birth, address, and your general account preferences.
  3. Verify your email and your identity by submitting copies of valid documents, such as a passport, driver’s license, and bank account statement.
  4. Deposit money into your account through any of the available funding methods.
  5. Claim a bonus by taking part in the bookie’s online promotions.
  6. Choose a market, evaluate the odds, and place a bet.
  7. Modify your stake or get out of a losing bet with a smaller loss, if your bookmaker supports such an option.
  8. Withdraw your winnings by choosing the payment method that was used to deposit funds. You can only withdraw money after satisfying the minimum bonus wagering conditions, subject to the sportsbook’s bonus terms and conditions.

Bonuses Offered by Sports Betting Sites

Bonuses at sports betting sites

There are different varieties of bonuses in the gambling industry, ranging from free bets, deposit bonuses, reload bonuses, loyalty points and VIP benefits. Almost all promotional campaigns are designed to attract punters to a gambling platform, which makes an excellent tool for you to increase your stake in the market. You can increase your bankroll by up to 100% more than your initial deposit, with minimal downside risk, aside from the bonus terms and conditions.

However, we warn you not to expect a regulated online betting operator to offer a massive bonus on your deposit, especially if the bookie operates with an EU license. Unlike casinos, sportsbooks don’t provide massive bonuses, as the maximum promotional offer may only include a few free credits or a loyalty program. Sometimes, bookies may offer a no-deposit bonus in the form of $10 or €10 betting credits or match the deposit by up to $25 for specific markets. In most cases, the deposit bonuses are offered as a percentage of the deposit amount, which typically varies from 10% to 100%.

Other bonus campaigns, such as reload bonuses and wager-oriented bonuses, provide punters with the option to earn free credits on their reload deposits for betting money on their casino tables or specific sports markets. These are highly specific bonuses that may only be available as part of a bookmaker’s seasonal promotion.

Almost all free money promotions have severe wagering conditions and may not be available for withdrawal. Bookmakers generally try to deter users from using a bonus, but not at the expense of conversion. The wagering conditions can be quite complex and may seem extensive, but they are relatively simple to understand. Minimum wagering requirements are nothing but the minimum amount of wagers that you must place to offset the cost incurred by the bookmaker for crediting a particular amount of bonus in your account. Hence, a 10X minimum wagering condition means that you have to wager 10 times the amount of money that you have deposited or the money that you have received as a bonus.

Bonus T&C varies from bookmaker to bookmaker, with markets contributing different percentages to the overall wagering volumes. Therefore, set your priorities straight and only use a bonus if you are confident of meeting the minimum requirements.

Ease of Depositing & Cashing Out at Sports Betting Companies

Payment methods at online betting websites

Online bookmakers provide a wide variety of account currency options, with the US Dollar, the Euro, and the British Pound being the most popular among punters. However, for bettors from India, some of the top betting sites also provide the option to wager in Indian Rupees (INR). The Indian Government and its Reserve Bank have issued several guidelines on international money transfers, including a restriction on exchanging INR for any other global currency. Anti-Money Laundering laws also prevent Indian citizens from transferring large sums of money to offshore accounts, which makes it difficult for Indian punters to transact in any currency other than the Indian Rupee.

Therefore, to make a payment to an online bookmaker account, punters can use either an e-wallet or a debit/credit card for depositing money in any supported currency. Betting operators usually accept popular e-wallets such as Skrill, Neteller, PayPal, WebMoney, and other local wallets for online payments, while the Visa and MasterCard brands are generally preferred for card payments. Bookmakers may accept bank wire transfers from their clients, but these can be expensive and can take longer for the funds to reach the account.

For withdrawing payouts or funds in an account, you should be careful to select the same payment option that was used to deposit the funds. If you are a verified account holder, and if you have satisfied all the bonus wagering requirements, you can expect your withdrawal to take anywhere from 24 hours to up to 10 working days. Once again, we can’t stress enough that bookmakers will only process a withdrawal after verification of the account. Some bookmakers may also implement additional bonus policies or account conditions, which can be detrimental to the withdrawal process. We are aware of the various withdrawal issues faced by punters, which is why we always recommend our readers to choose a licensed and regulated online betting operator.

Platforms on Offer at an Indian Betting Site

Indian punters have access to excellent web-based platforms that are developed using the most advanced encryption technologies to provide a secure experience. Most online betting sites in India are branches of already established companies (for example: Betway, bet365, Dafabet and 888sport), where operators have invested heavily in standalone platforms to meet the requirements of their global clientele.

Betting platforms are mostly available in two different configurations: a website version and a desktop version. The website version is a browser-based interface that utilises a web browser’s graphical capabilities to provide a convenient and secure betting platform for online users. Modern web interfaces are highly advanced and have all the essential features that are expected from an online bookmaker. The desktop platform, on the other hand, is an installable app that is available on compatible operating systems, but these days, most operators prefer the website version over the installable interface.

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Mobile Apps for Betting on Smartphones & Tablets

Betting on mobile devices

Online bookmakers usually develop betting platforms for both desktops and mobile devices by designing them with similar settings and platform features. Since modern web browsers can handle a wide array of tasks, it is not uncommon for betting operators to ditch an installable interface and adopt a web-version as the default interface. There are several advantages to a website-based platform, as they can be accessed on both desktop and mobile devices through a supported web browser. New cutting-edge responsive web templates also provide the convenience of modifying the interface layout to suit the screen size of the device that is accessing the web-based platform.

Although mobile users can use the web browser version on their smartphones and tablets, some punters still prefer a dedicated app for their iOS and Android devices. Online bookmakers do provide specific apps for mobile devices that can be downloaded and installed on a smartphone or a tablet. These mobile online betting apps are available for all users, irrespective of their geographical location unless otherwise specified by the bookmaker.

Apple users can download the iOS apps of their preferred bookmakers directly from the Apple App Store, but Android has a strict policy that prevents betting companies from publishing their mobile apps on the Google Play Store. Nevertheless, sports betting sites host their Android apps on their official download pages or provide alternate download options through their affiliate service providers. When downloading betting apps from third-party websites, always ensure that the source website is directly affiliated with a reliable bookmaker. Failure to authenticate the exact source of your app downloads can put your personal and financial information at risk, especially in the form of malware, virus, scams, information phishing, and other serious security concerns.

Navigating the Interface on Desktop & Mobile

Sportsbooks interfaces on desktop and mobile

Betting companies have preferences regarding designing and developing a betting interface, which is more or less determined by their marketing strategies, products, and sports categories. Aside from the overall theme of a platform and some general betting features, we have found that almost all platforms have similar layouts and betting options, which ensures continuity and familiarity when switching between different bookmakers. For new bettors, it is reasonably easy to get to grips with the general layout of platforms, as bookmakers strive to create user-friendly sportsbooks for the benefit of their clients.

Website-based betting platforms generally have a three-column layout for large screens such as desktops and laptops, while smartphones and smaller tablets have a single column layout that can be scrolled up or down for more information. The web browser version and the installable app usually have the same design for mobile devices, so there are few differences between them. The navigation menu, the description of the markets, the odds, and other betting-related information are provided in easy-to-access links and buttons on the dashboard, along with options to edit/manage account information and payment options.

The betslip is unique for different platforms and can vary according to the choice of a bookmaker. The betslip is an essential tool that can be used to manage all aspects of your betting, such as the amount, calculating your potential payouts, editing your existing bets, cashing out the bets before expiry, and keeping track of all of your bets in the market. While desktop users will find the betslip on the right-hand side of their user dashboard, mobile users will either be offered a pop-up betslip or a link to a dedicated page that contains their betting information. The betslip will also become visible once you click or tap on an event.

Understanding the Betting Market

Online bookies typically offer a comprehensive array of sports betting categories, ranging from cricket, football, and motorsports, to the most modern iterations of esports and virtual gaming. The markets are outlined in an odds format, where every market is denoted as an event that is bound to happen during a game. For instance, in cricket betting, scoring a six, taking a wicket, bowling a no-ball, reaching a century, amassing a total on the board, and other events that can happen on the cricket pitch are all part of the overall betting market. It works similarly for football matches, where the number of goals, number of penalties, free kicks, corners, and even the duration of the game constitute the market for betting.

The odds available for a market determine the extent of payout that is eligible to a punter. Different markets can have differing odds at various intervals of a game or a match, and the odds can also vary from bookmaker to bookmaker. As a punter, your interest lies in finding the best online betting sites in India that offer access to a broad category of sporting events and the most diverse range of betting markets to represent all outcomes.

Reading the Odds

To enjoy consistently successful results in sports betting, understanding the odds of an event is as important as predicting the outcome of the said event. Online betting websites typically offer odds in three different formats: American Odds, Fractional Odds (UK Odds) and Decimal Odds (European Odds). While it can be confusing at first for rookies and amateur punters, you can quickly get the hang of it by understanding what the different numbers mean. Here is a short description on how to decipher the odds provided by online bookmakers.

American Odds

The American odds are quite simple and easy to comprehend

The American odds system is quite simple and easy to comprehend, as the figures pretty much state the obvious. For instance, if the odds are quoted as a negative number, such as -250, it means that punters will have to bet $250 to earn a payout of $100 for an accurate prediction.

In contrast, odds that are quoted in the positive, such as +250, mean that a $100 wager will return $350 ($100 initial bet amount + $250 winnings) for a right prediction. Of course, a wrong prediction will result in a loss of the entire betting amount.

Fractional Odds

The fractional odds are denoted as fractions

UK odds are denoted as fractions, such as 10/1 and 1/10. The fractional odds format can be a bit confusing for novice punters, but it is not as complicated as it looks. For example, an event with a 10/1 odd will deliver a potential payout of 10x of the betting amount. Therefore, if a punter bets $10 in a 10/1 event, the total winnings on a positive outcome are $110 ($10 betting amount + $100 winning amount). For a market that offers a 1/10 fraction odd, the winning amount will be $1 for every $10 bet. Therefore, for a $10 investment on a 1/10 event, the total payout will be $11.

European Odds

Decimal odds are highly prevalent across Europe and Asia-Pacific

Decimal odds are highly prevalent across Europe and Asia-Pacific and this is one of the most commonly used odds formats among amateur bettors. A decimal odds of 5.0 for a betting amount of $10 will yield a total $50 payout ($40 in winnings and $10 betting amount) for a correct prediction. Therefore, Punters usually consider the decimal system to be the most natural odds format for calculating winning pay-outs.

Betting companies often provide the option to change the odds format within their platform. An Indian betting site will usually adopt the decimal odds format for their sportsbooks, but the choice is entirely up to the punter.

Top Tips for Advanced Punters

Here are some pointers to help you to enjoy a safe and secure online experience in India:

  1. Only choose a licensed and regulated bookmaker that has a good reputation.
  2. Ensure that the bookie accepts punters from the Indian market.
  3. Check to see if the betting operator offers all the sporting categories that you prefer.
  4. Compare the odds of different sports betting companies and choose the ones that offer the best odds and a broad coverage of the important markets.
  5. Even though sports betting is illegal in India, make sure that you abide by the law and cooperate with the authorities in case of any issues or disputes.
  6. Never indulge in any match-fixing or spot-fixing activities, even if they can guarantee excellent returns.
  7. When performing online transactions, ensure that all the money is accounted for, including the source of your payments.
  8. Go through our bookmaker reviews to find the best company for Indian bettors.
  9. Ensure optimum bankroll management, so that you don’t overspend and wager beyond the limits that you can afford to lose.
  10. Consider multiple betting systems and strategies, including the use of AI, algorithms, arbing, and any other programs that can provide you an edge in the market.
  11. Take part in betting tournaments to interact with top punters and earn a chance to learn from the experts.
  12. Embrace innovative and futuristic betting technologies and options such as esports betting, blockchain, machine learning, social networks, and virtual sports betting tools.

How to Choose the Best Online Betting Websites through Our Reviews

We understand that our readers seek the best information about sports betting operators and online sportsbooks, which is why our bookmaker reviews are designed to offer detailed specifics about the pros and cons of each company that we recommend. We also take special care to understand the various products on offer and decipher the policies that can have significant impacts on the betting experience. We also pay particular attention to ensuring that the bookmakers we recommend accept punters from India.

Compare the Best Bookmakers on These Criteria
Best Mobile App
Bet365
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Betway
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888sport
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Dafabet
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*18+; T&Cs apply to each offer.
**18+; Available to new customers only. Make a qualifying deposit of ₹400 or more and claim the offer within 30 days of registering your account to qualify for 15% of that amount in Bet Credits, up to a maximum of ₹4,000. Once claimed, your Bet Credits will be held in your account balance and are non-withdrawable.
*Geo restrictions apply. Funded account or bet placed 24 hours prior to event required to access.
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