The Old Dominion is in a new era: legal Virginia sports betting went live on January 21, 2021.
Your friends have probably already been raving about sports betting – it’s soared in popularity faster in Virginia than in any other state thus far.
If you haven’t tried it yet, what are you waiting for? Now is the time to get off the sidelines! Virginia is one of the newest sports betting markets in America, so you can take advantage of huge sign-up bonuses from VA sportsbooks.
Betting on your favorite sports brings you closer to the action, but we know it can be a bit confusing at first.
Sports Betting Dime is here to guide you through the process by providing all the information Virginians need to bet with confidence. Plus, we’ve partnered with top VA online betting sites to bring you exclusive promos that will give you a head start.
Find straightforward answers to all the important questions about sports betting in the Old Dominion.
Best Virginia Online Sportsbooks
DraftKings has grown from a daily fantasy powerhouse into one of the most popular betting apps and online sportsbooks in the United States. If you’re looking to wager on sports in Virginia you’ll find a large menu of betting options and many promotions at DraftKings Sportsbook.Promo: Up to $1,050 Free!
FanDuel has built on their daily fantasy success with a flawless betting app and excellent online sportsbook. Virginia users can expect a superior live betting experience and lots of features for new bettors.Promo: $1,000 Risk-Free Bet
Enjoy BetMGM's wealth of experience in the industry. Sports bettors in Virginia can take advantage of impressive sign-up bonuses, weekly free bets, and tons of in-play betting options at BetMGM's sportsbook.Promo: $600 Risk-Free Bet
William Hill VA has expanded its renowned sportsbook brand to the US and now offers legal sports betting for Virginia residents. Look forward to one of the biggest futures, props, and in-play betting markets in the industry.Promo: $500 Risk-Free Bet!
Unibet is one of the best sportsbooks available, and VA bettors should be happy to know they operate in the Old Dominion. Unibet has been in business for over 20 years, entering the legal US sports betting market in states like Virginia.Promo: $500 Risk-Free Bet
BetRivers is ready to make their mark on the Virginia sports betting scene. You can sign up with BetRivers from anywhere in VA, and their welcome offer will make you happy you did.Promo: Up to $250 Deposit Match
Key VA Sports Betting Info
This in-depth page has everything you need to know about Virginia sports betting, but we understand some people only want the highlights. If you’re looking for something specific, skip ahead – we won’t be offended!
As of January 21, 2021, Virginia sports fans can place a bet from anywhere in the state at any time.
Mobile sports betting apps are the most convenient way to get in on the action. Mobile apps make it easy to sign up, manage your bankroll, see the odds, and place your bets. As an extra perk, several of the best sportsbook apps now allow you to live stream sporting events on the go.
Here are the sports betting apps available in the Old Dominion:
|Betting App||App Store Rating||Get Started|
Each app listed above is available for Android and Apple, except for BetRivers, which is Android only. Note that in some cases, you may be required to download the state-specific version.
There are at least two more sportsbooks on the way that the Virginia Lottery Board has approved. Get a sneak preview of those by reading our detailed reviews:
If you want our honest opinion, our reviewers prefer FanDuel for mobile betting. It’s the most intuitive, easy-to-navigate app available. Plus, you can use the app in each of the ten states FanDuel Sportsbook operates in, which is handy if you travel a lot.
Whether you choose FanDuel or another betting app, make sure you sign up and make a deposit using the unique links on this page to get the best welcome bonuses available.
You’ve likely seen all kinds of sportsbook advertising and promotions lately. The top books offer a wide variety of bonuses to entice customers. You can (and should!) take advantage of this to boost your bankroll.
Most bonus offers don’t require a promo code, so they are very easy to redeem. Some of the biggest brands in the US sports betting market have already launched in the Old Dominion, so there are plenty of promotions you can now access.
Examples of ongoing offers include:
- Sign Up Bonuses
- Boosted Odds
- Free Bets
- Parlay Insurance
- Refer-A-Friend Bonuses
- Sport-Specific Contests and Bonuses
- Free to Play Pools
For a complete guide to the various types of bonuses offered by top sportsbooks, visit our Bonuses section. If you’re looking for today’s best bonuses for new users, you can find a handy list with unique links in the section below.
Virginia Sign Up Bonuses
Typically, sign-up bonuses are the most lucrative promotions sportsbooks will offer. You can add hundreds, if not thousands, to your bankroll!
Sign-up offers are for new users only and typically take the form of a risk-free first bet, a deposit match, or a no-deposit bonus.
There’s no shortage of welcome bonuses you can take advantage of in Virginia. If you’ve already been using one sportsbook, it might be time to try a different one. We’ve partnered with all of the top sportsbooks to bring you the best selection of sign-up offers available.
Here’s what you can access today:
|Betting Site||Virginia Welcome Bonus|
|FanDuel||$1,000 Risk-Free Bet|
|DraftKings||$1,050 Welcome Offer|
|BetMGM||$600 Risk-Free Bet|
|BetRivers||$250 Deposit Match|
|William Hill||$2,021 Risk-Free Bet|
|Unibet||$500 Risk-Free Bet!|
Sign-up using the unique links above to ensure you’re getting the best bonuses available today. You can also find more details about these offers and other ongoing promotions via our Virginia bonus page.
Thanks to remote registration, it’s super easy to get started at a VA sportsbook and redeem the full value of your sign-up bonus. Most adults who are at least 21 years old can sign-up using their laptop or mobile phone from anywhere within state lines.
Here’s a general overview of the sign-up process in Virginia:
- Create a new account with a premier Virginia sports betting site. Click here to sign-up at DraftKings Sportsbook.
- Follow the on-screen prompts. You’ll need some basic info ready for verification, including your:
- Full name
- Date of birth
- Social Security Number
- Once your account is verified, make a deposit using your payment method of choice. You’ll want to do this right away to take full advantage of the welcome bonus on offer. Most Virginia sportsbooks will accept credit cards, debit cards, ACH eCheck, PayPal, or prepaid Play+ cards.
- Bear in mind that the amount of your initial deposit typically determines the value of your sign-up bonus.
- Place your sports bet(s)!
Stay on top of the latest VA sports betting news as more sportsbooks enter the state and we learn more about the future of sports wagering in the Old Dominion.
July 1, 2021: As of today, sportsbooks are allowed to offer lines on the Olympics, just in time for bettors to put money down on Tokyo 2021.
April 28, 2021: Unibet launches in Virginia after receiving approval for an online sports betting license on April 21, 2021.
March 25, 2021: Virginia Governor Ralph Northam signs Senate Bill 1254 and House Bill 1847, which will officially take effect on July 1, 2021. The amendments to Virginia’s sports betting laws will allow up to 12 mobile sportsbooks that are not tethered to casinos or other gaming businesses. The bills also ensure that Virginia sports bettors will be allowed to bet on the Olympics in time for Tokyo 2021.
March 15, 2021: The Virginia Lottery approves sports betting licenses for Golden Nugget, Bally Bet, and Barstool Sportsbook. All three will launch in VA at a later date.
March 9, 2021: WynnBet, approved on March 4, 2021, begins taking bets.
February 3, 2021: William Hill launches in Virginia in partnership with Caesars Sportsbook, joining FanDuel, DraftKings, BetMGM, and BetRivers as the sportsbooks available in VA.
November 3, 2020: Voters in four VA cities approve of casino construction through a referendum on election day.
A moderate state, the Old Dominion has taken a very pragmatic and measured approach to the legalization of sports betting.
Virginia Gov. Ralph Northam (D) authorized sports betting in 2020 under Senate Bill 384 and House Bill 896. The Virginia Lottery regulates the industry and has an extensive online info center for casinos and sports betting.
You can find the complete letter of the law in Chapter 40 of the Code of Virginia, or keep reading for a recap of the most essential details everyday bettors should know.
Remote Registration Allowed
Virginia’s rules make it very easy for bettors to get started with a mobile betting app or online sportsbook in the state.
You can register and fund your sports betting accounts from anywhere in the country, which is a blessing for bettors and sportsbooks alike.
You must be physically located within Virginia state lines to place a bet with a Virginia sportsbook. Most other state platforms like online sportsbooks in Colorado, for example, will use geolocation verification software to confirm your whereabouts each time you place a wager.
Most mobile betting apps have integrated this functionality with the location services on your phone. Computer users may need to download an unobtrusive software package directly from their sportsbook’s website.
If you sign up for a sportsbook that doesn’t require you to enable location services on your device, consider it a red flag: that sportsbook is not legal in Virginia.
You do not need to be a Virginia resident to use a betting app or online sportsbook in the state. Location requirements apply to your physical presence in the state rather than your place of residence. Therefore, sports bettors from nearby states such as Maryland or Kentucky are welcome to wager using a VA sportsbook app while within Virginia state lines.
Sportsbooks Must Use League Data
By law, sportsbooks in Virginia must use official league data to settle all in-play wagers. This requirement is a win for sports leagues themselves as it’s easy revenue for the likes of the NBA, NFL, MLB, and NHL.
However, buying league data adds further operating costs for sportsbooks. Unfortunately, these are likely to be passed on to bettors through increased vigorish.
Who Can Bet on Sports in Virginia?
Most adults can legally bet on sports in Virginia through online sports betting sites and mobile apps.
You Must Be At Least 21 Years Old to Bet in Virginia
The legal gambling age in Virginia is 21. This age restriction applies to all bets placed in-person or through the internet. All legal operators will verify your age and identity upon registration.
Some operators require you to upload a government-issued photo ID, while others rely on approved e-verification software to confirm your age and identity electronically.
Industry Insiders Are Restricted
To mitigate potential conflicts of interest or unfair advantages, Virginia lawmakers placed the following restrictions on industry insiders:
- Employees and board members of the state lottery are prohibited from sports betting
- Sportsbook employees and members of their households cannot place bets on their own platform
- Any competitor, coach, trainer, employee, referee, or owner of a sports team in a professional or college sports event is prohibited from betting on any event in a league they participate in
These restrictions are in line with the sports betting regulations in place in other states. Ultimately, the vast majority of adults in Virginia are legally allowed to bet on sports in the state.
Which Events Can I Bet on in Virginia?
Virginia bettors can wager on most major sports and events, with a couple notable exceptions.
No Betting on Local Colleges or High School Sports
You cannot bet on a game where a Virginia college team is a participant, and betting on youth sports is strictly prohibited.
Political Betting is Off Limits
Unfortunately, wagering on the Presidential Election and other political outcomes is prohibited in Virginia. Betting on American politics is very popular at many international sportsbooks, but the only way to do so legally from within the United States is by using a political prediction market.
Which Types of Wagering Are Allowed on These Events?
Virginia’s sports betting law allows for all the most popular wagering types.
- Want to bet on the Nats against the Yankees? You’ll find moneylines, spreads, and totals lines.
- Got a hunch Ovechkin will score two goals against the Penguins? Check out prop betting
- Want to add even more excitement to Super Bowl Sunday? Give live betting a try.
- Think Elena Delle Donne and the Mystics can win another WNBA title this year? Put money on it with WNBA championship futures.
- If you seek more advanced wagering types, parlays, pleasers, and teasers are always an option.
- Wager directly against your friends or fellow sports bettors through exchange betting.
There are nearly limitless betting options available at Virginia sportsbooks. The only restrictions in place affect proposition betting. Virginia prohibits prop bets on all college sports events. This applies to both pre-game and in-play wagering.
Virginia’s sports betting laws create space for significant consumer choice within a competitive market. The state plans to issue at least four and up to 12 licenses for online sports betting, and retail sports betting will be available at soon-to-be-built casinos.
Thanks to persistent lobbying by Washington Football Team owner Dan Snyder, and others, state law stipulates that authorized professional sports facilities within Virginia can operate retail sportsbooks on their premises.
Online sports betting operators in Virginia do not need to partner with a land-based casino or retail location, as is the case in some states. This would have been highly restrictive in Virginia, given the state doesn’t have any casinos currently.
A three-year sports betting license costs a modest $250,000. However, there is an additional $50,000 fee for each principal – defined as any person who owns five percent or more of a permit-holding entity and any individual employed in a managerial capacity for a sports betting platform on behalf of a permit holder.
Licensed operators are charged 15 percent on all sports betting revenue in Virginia. Most states fall in the six percent to 20 percent range, so this is considered a reasonable tax rate. Virginia’s tax rate is slightly higher than New Jersey’s (13.5 percent) but far lower than Pennsylvania’s (36 percent).
Of note, sports leagues are legally entitled to access betting data in Virginia whenever they request it from sportsbook operators in the state. Leagues can access information regarding a bet’s amount, type, the time it was placed, where it was placed (including the IP address), and the outcome. To access the data, leagues must be licensed suppliers in the state of Virginia.
There are high expectations for Virginia’s sports betting revenue, which can be tracked here. Thus far, Virginia sports betting volume is off to the hottest start of any state to date, surpassing neighbor Tennessee for the highest betting handle in a market’s first three months.
FanDuel is the early favorite in terms of VA sports betting apps, accounting for more than half the market share from launch in January through March 2021.
While not strictly prohibited by law, Virginia does not have any retail sports betting locations. The main reason for this is the Commonwealth doesn’t have any casinos currently.
Virginia voters approved casinos to be built in several cities in the coming years. Expect sports betting to be available at retail locations in Bristol, Danville, Norfolk, Portsmouth, and most likely Richmond in the future.
In the meantime, if you’re craving the excitement of in-person wagering, you can drive over to Washington, DC, where retail sports betting is available at major sports arenas and select bars and restaurants. See our DC sports betting page for more details.
Additionally, both the Hollywood Casino and the Greenbrier Resort in West Virginia are a short distance from the WV-VA border. Longer trips to states like PA or TN might be worth it if you’re looking for a new experience that isn’t on the other side of the country.
Is sports betting legal in Virginia?
Yes. Legal sports betting launched in Virginia in January 2021. FanDuel and DraftKings were the first operators to begin taking bets online, while BetMGM, BetRivers, and William Hill soon followed. Others are expected to be available soon.
Do I need to be a Virginia resident to place bets in the state?
No, you do not need to be a resident of Virginia to bet on sports from within state boundaries. Furthermore, you can transfer money in and out of your account from anywhere with internet access. You just need to be physically in Virginia when placing bets, which is also the case if you’re betting with WV online sportsbooks in the neighboring state.
Can you play fantasy sports in Virginia?
Virginia signed into law the “Fantasy Contests Act” in 2016, making Virginia the first state to formally legalize daily fantasy sports (DFS).
Does Virginia have any sports teams?
No major professional sports franchise calls Virginia home. However, the Washington Football Team and Washington Capitals have practice facilities or a team headquarters in Virginia.
Virginia has the unfortunate distinction of being the most populous US state that doesn’t have any major professional teams of its own. That said, many Virginians back teams from neighboring jurisdictions, including:
- Washington Capitals
- Washington Football Team
- Washington Nationals
- Washington Wizards
- Washington Mystics
It’s worth noting that FanDuel Sportsbook has an official partnership with the Washington Football Team, which has training facilities and team headquarters in Virginia. FanDuel promises extremely generous odds on hometown teams everywhere they operate. This formal partnership all but guarantees they’ll have the best lines on Washington Football, so we highly recommend fans sign up for an account.
Similarly, the Washington Capitals practice in Arlington County and have a partnership with William Hill.
Sports Betting Dime provides comprehensive betting tools and editorial coverage to help you make confident and informed bets no matter who you support. Remember to always bet with your head and not your heart!
Find the Best Sportsbook in Any State
Home to more than eight million people, Virginia is sure to be a hot new sports betting market in 2021 and beyond.
Sports Betting Dime is here to provide valuable resources for new and experienced bettors alike. We have detailed betting guides to help you gain the edge you’re looking for, plus in-depth reviews of all the best online sportsbooks and bonuses available.
If you’re trying to find an online sportsbook in a particular state within the USA, we list sportsbooks licensed to provide sports betting in each state.
Have fun and enjoy the action out there!