Sports betting will soon be available across Maryland thanks to voters’ approval in a November 2020 referendum and the passage of a new sports betting bill in April 2021.
Home to six million people, Maryland is the last of the Mid-Atlantic states to legalize sports betting. With several major professional sports teams located in-state and many more within just a couple hours’ drive, the Old Line State is sure to be an ultra-competitive market for sports betting in the near future.
Let’s take a closer look at everything you need to know to start betting on sports in Maryland.
Maryland Sports Betting at a Glance
Maryland voters overwhelmingly supported sports wagering in a November 2020 general election ballot measure. The Maryland Constitution requires voter approval for any expansion of commercial gambling activities, which means the referendum was a mandatory step for the state to legalize sports betting.
Question 2 authorized sports wagering at certain licensed facilities and passed by approximately a 2-1 margin. However, with the 2020 session of the Maryland General Assembly shortened in March due to the COVID-19 pandemic, Senate Bill 4 (which placed Question 2 on the ballot) was rushed through, resulting in a referendum that did not include specifics as to how legal sports betting would operate.
Voters’ approval of sports betting effectively gave Maryland lawmakers a directive to take further action towards implementing rules and regulations. State legislature reconvened in January 2021, and Maryland lawmakers were tasked with determining a number of factors, including:
- Licensing fees and tax rates
- Number of licensed operators
- Whether or not online sports betting will be allowed
- What types of sports events can be wagered on
- What types of bets will be permitted
- Whether or not additional provisions are needed to diversify the industry
Bill HB 940 made its way through the Maryland Legislature and is expected to be signed into law by Governor Larry Hogan. Sweeping, last-minute changes by the Senate were approved by the House, making this one of the biggest sports betting bills in the nation.
With HB 940’s passage, the total number of sports betting licenses soon to be available in Maryland is more than double that of any other state thus far.
The state will automatically grant licenses for in-person sports wagering at Maryland’s six casinos, three major professional sports stadiums, horse racing tracks, the state fairgrounds, and a riverboat casino on the Potomac River. Another 30 retail betting licenses are open to additional applicants, and 60 licenses for online sportsbooks will be up for grabs.
All of this is excellent news for Maryland sports bettors. With an open and competitive market in the state, bettors can expect plenty of options and juicier promotions.
Here are some of the online sportsbooks we expect to see licensed in Maryland in the future:
|William Hill||Read Review|
When Will Sports Betting Launch in Maryland?
Maryland sports betting is anticipated to launch later in 2021. State officials confirmed a target launch date of September 1, 2021 – just in time for the NFL season.
In the meantime, Maryland residents have many nearby options should they wish to place their bets. All five jurisdictions that border Maryland – Delaware, Pennsylvania, Virginia, West Virginia, and Washington, DC – offer various forms of legalized sports betting.
Though Maryland is small, it has strong fan support for its local sports teams and is well within driving distance of many other populous states, making it a great destination for sports bettors in the future.
Where to Bet on Sports in Maryland
With Governor Hogan’s forthcoming signature, House Bill 940 will soon become law in Maryland. Assuming it faces no further opposition, the bill is set to be enacted on June 1, 2021.
Both retail and online sportsbooks will be available in Maryland in the near future.
Expect to see most if not all of the industry leaders, as well as a number of smaller operators. Maryland took important steps to prioritize licenses and funds for minority and women-owned businesses. The state will also ensure smaller businesses can obtain licenses, including non-gaming entities such as bars, restaurants, minor-league sports venues, and others. Smaller operators will pay a lower licensing fee, reducing barriers to entry.
Maryland Sports Betting Apps & Mobile Betting: Everything You Need to Know
Mobile betting apps offer sports fans the flexibility and convenience of placing a bet from anywhere at any time.
Maryland regulations allow for up to 60 mobile sports betting permits, so bettors will soon have no shortage of options.
Here are some of the sports betting apps we expect to see in Maryland:
|Sportsbook||State-Specific Version?||Learn More|
|William Hill||No||Read Review|
Best Maryland Sports Betting Bonuses & Promos
Most betting apps and online sportsbooks offer a variety of promotions and bonuses in order to stand out in an increasingly competitive market. These offers change on a frequent basis and can add significant amounts to your bankroll.
Many promos come in the form of boosted odds – meaning a bigger potential payout for the same risk – or risk-free bet credits. Some sportsbooks also offer skills-based contests, and most top-rated books offer lucrative welcome bonuses. Taking advantage of these is a great reason to register with an online sportsbook even if you plan to do most of your betting in-person at a casino.
Check this page for the latest Maryland sports betting bonuses and promotions as sports betting goes live in the state.
Legal Sports Betting in Maryland
Maryland voters overwhelmingly approved of sports betting in a referendum in November 2020. Legal sportsbooks are projected to launch in Maryland later in 2021.
The sections below summarize the most important information bettors in Maryland should be aware of.
Online Sports Betting in Maryland
Maryland lawmakers full-heartedly embrace online betting and will issue more permits than any other state as a means to remain competitive in the Mid-Atlantic region.
Maryland will allow fully remote registration, meaning bettors will not be required to sign up for or verify an online sportsbook account in person.
Sports Betting Dime will keep you up to date with rules and regulations for online sportsbooks in Maryland, as well as licensee information, as more information becomes available.
Maryland Retail Sports Betting: Wagering In-Person at Casinos
While online sports betting is typically the most convenient way to wager, visiting a casino has its own unique appeal. It’s hard to beat the excitement of placing a bet in-person and watching the action unfold on the sportsbook floor, especially during major events such as March Madness or the Super Bowl.
For those who want to enjoy the brick-and-mortar wagering experience, Maryland’s six casinos are scattered throughout the state. Each of these to be automatically be licensed for retail sports betting in the near future when House Bill 940 is signed into law. Sports Betting Dime will provide status updates as they become available.
Find the full name, address, and hours of operation of Maryland’s six casinos below.
|Hollywood Casino Perryville||1201 Chesapeake Overlook Pkwy, Perryville, MD 21903||Open 24/7|
|Horseshoe Casino Baltimore||1525 Russell St, Baltimore, MD 21230||Open 24/7|
|Maryland Live! Casino & Hotel||7002 Arundel Mills Cir #7777, Hanover, MD 21076||Open 24/7|
|MGM National Harbor||101 MGM National Ave, Oxon Hill, MD 20745||Open 24/7|
|Ocean Downs Casino||10218 Racetrack Rd, Berlin, MD 21811||Daily: 8am to 2am|
|Rocky Gap Casino Resort||16701 Lakeview Rd NW, Flintstone, MD 21530||Open 24/7|
*Hours are subject to change due to COVID-19
Maryland Sports Betting Rules & Restrictions
Maryland is still finalizing rules and restrictions for sports betting in the state. We expect more information to become available soon.
Check back here for updates on:
- What types of sporting events are eligible to be wagered on
- What types of wagers are allowed
- Notable exceptions and restrictions
Maryland Sports Betting FAQs
Can you bet on sports in Maryland?
You currently cannot bet on sports in Maryland. However, it is anticipated that legal sports betting will likely begin sometime in summer 2021.
How many casinos are in Maryland?
Maryland has six casinos and five horse tracks.
Where will Maryland sports betting revenue go?
State officials estimate that sports betting in Maryland could generate up to $20 million a year in tax revenue. Both lawmakers and the November 2020 ballot measure explicitly stated that the primary purpose of this revenue will be to fund public education.
Which pro sports teams play in Maryland?
Maryland is home to two NFL teams, the Baltimore Ravens and the Washington Football Team, as well as the Baltimore Orioles of Major League Baseball.
Local Teams Worth Betting On
Get ready to place a bet at a legal MD sportsbook by starting to research local teams before the anticipated launch of sports betting in 2021. The following pro sports teams are located in or near Maryland:
- Baltimore Orioles
- Baltimore Ravens
- D.C. United
- Washington Capitals
- Washington Football Team
- Washington Nationals
- Washington Wizards
Betting with your head and not your heart is the foundation of responsible gambling, but Sports Betting Dime understands it’s natural for fans to want to support their favorite teams.
Our comprehensive betting tools and editorial coverage are here to help you make confident and informed bets no matter who you support.
Visit SBD Sharp to find detailed return on investment data for any NBA, MLB, NHL, NFL, or college basketball and football teams.
Maryland Sports Betting History
Maryland is one of few states in the US to go from allowing gambling to banning it, and is now in the process of bringing it back again. Notably, any expansion of commercial gambling activities in Maryland must be approved by a majority vote in a statewide referendum.
Once upon a time, Maryland offered legal slots betting before banning the activity in 1968. Decades later, referendums in 2008 and 2012, respectively, brought back slots wagering and then table games at state casinos.
Since then, the Professional and Amateur Sports Protection Act (PASPA) was overturned on May 14, 2018. As a result, each state is now permitted to create their own laws and regulations for sports betting. As such, Maryland passed bill SB 4 to hold a referendum vote on sports and events wagering in November 2020. The vote passed overwhelmingly, paving the path for sports betting to launch in Maryland sometime in 2021.
In the meantime, the Old Line State has six casinos and five horse tracks overall. They opened their sixth casino, the MGM National Harbor, in December of 2019. Those who follow the World Poker Tour may recognize the Maryland Live! Casino which is the state’s largest and hosts a stop on the tour.
Find the Best Place to Bet on Sports
Sports Betting Dime is here to help you bet with confidence every time. Our expert reviewers have spent countless hours evaluating the best online sportsbook options so you don’t have to. You can find detailed sportsbook reviews and advice on how to pick the best one for you with our list of top online betting sites.
Looking to bet in other states around the country? You can track state by state legalization to keep you up to date with the latest sports betting news on a state by state basis so you’ll know when, where, and how to place your bets.
Enjoy the action out there!