Last updated: June 1, 2020
Date of legalisation: Officially sanctioned in 1949 (online sports betting legalized in 2010)
Since Nevada took the decision to legalize sports gambling in 1949, including live and off-track horse racing, the state hasn’t looked back. People travel from far and wide to have a flutter on live sporting events in Las Vegas, with the Strip’s casino resorts each housing their very own sportsbooks, allowing visitors to bet and watch almost any form of live sport under the sun.
There was a threat to Nevada’s legalized sports betting domination in 2018 following the repeal of the Professional and Amateur Sports Protection Act (PASPA). This meant that other states could legalize sports betting, but Vegas remains the hub of betting on live sports today.
1949 – Although the “Wide Open Gambling Bill” was passed in Nevada in 1931, it wasn’t until 1949 when sports betting was officially sanctioned by the state.
1951 – Congress soon passed a federal excise tax on all sportsbooks operating in Las Vegas, with each bookmaker having to pay 10% tax to remain in operation.
1984 – The congress tax on Las Vegas sportsbooks was eventually slashed from 10% to 2% and then 0.5% in 1984. This made sportsbooks much more economically viable in Nevada, causing a surge in new bookmakers throughout the state.
2010 – Mobile and online sports betting was legalized in Nevada in 2010, opening up a wave of interest from millennial customers in pre-game and in-play sports betting opportunities.
Yes, its has been possible to place legal wagers on all sports betting events since 1949 from land-based sportsbooks. Since 2010, punters have also been able to bet on sports using their mobile devices and computers online throughout the Silver State.
The Nevada Gaming Control Board is the state’s overarching governmental agency tasked with the regulation of gaming throughout the state, including sports betting. It has been in operation since 1955, six years after land-based sports betting was officially legalized.
As with most other U.S. states which have legalized sports betting, bettors have to be aged 21 and above to place legal wagers on sports in Nevada. Customers will also be required to demonstrate a valid government-issued ID, as well as a social security card or tax ID number to get started.
Las Vegas is obviously the most popular city in Nevada for sports betting. There are sportsbooks in all the major casino resorts along the Las Vegas Boulevard Strip, as well as Downtown. The city of Reno in the north-western corner of Nevada is also home to several sportsbooks that offer legalized betting opportunities.
The likes of Caesars Entertainment and MGM Resorts International oversee the operation of most casino-based sportsbooks on the Vegas Strip, while smaller establishments like Station Casinos cater more to the local population of sports bettors.
The biggest and most popular operators of land-based sportsbooks in Nevada include:
You can find legal sports betting in the following establishments across Las Vegas:
Since the legalization of online and app-based sports betting in Nevada, there are a number of online betting apps available, including:
In 2018, Nevada had a total handle of more than $5 billion in its sports betting industry. In December 2018, Nevada’s sportsbooks took $562 million in wagers alone, so it remains a multi-billion-dollar industry in the Silver State.
At the time of writing, the tax rate for all land-based sports betting revenue in Nevada is set at 6.75%. Although the state has benefited hugely from taxing its sports betting activities, the benefits and flexibility afforded to the land-based and online sports betting industry in Nevada has made it one of the best cities to bet on sports in the U.S. and beyond.
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