Best Portuguese Betting Sites
Portugal is home to more than 10 million citizens, and just like other European nations, gambling and betting have been part of the Portuguese culture for long. Despite betting being part of Portugal’s culture for decades, there were no regulations at all. It was in 1961 when Portugal took a bold step towards having a regulated gambling market. In 1961, Santa Casa da Misericórdia de Lisboa, a charitable firm, was given exclusive rights to organize and subsequently regulate all activities to do with betting in the country. However, things took even more drastic changes in May 2016, with the Portuguese government launching a much more regulated gambling market, especially online gambling.
With such changes and regulations, it was now free for international bookies to seek licenses to operate in Portugal. Unfortunately, due to taxes -8-16%- on betting turnover, only eight bookies applied. With such huge taxes, these bookies have no choice but to lower their odds, which is why players prefer non-licensed sportsbooks due to their high odds.
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5 things to know before betting in Portugal
Before placing your bets in Portugal, here are five important things that you need to know:
- As of now, there are only eight online sports betting operators that are licensed to operate
- Santa Casa da Misericórdia de Lisboa pays fewer taxes (50% less) compared to foreign operators
- All licensed Portuguese betting sites pay taxes of between 8% and 16% of their total turnover
- Bettors winnings aren’t subjected to any taxes
- More than half of Portuguese bettors (68%) prefer playing on unlicensed foreign sportsbooks
Best betting sites in Portugal
While there are other online sports betting sites available for Portuguese players, a few of them stand from the crowd. Based on our expert analysis, we established that 22Bet, 1xBet, and Betwinner are the best in the market. We used several parameters to arrive at this. However, some of the common ones included high odds, multiple deposit methods, and a website optimized in the Portuguese.
Online sports betting in Portugal and its gambling law framework
By the early 2000s, Santa Casa da Misericórdia de Lisboa (SCML) did manage to extend its monopoly across online betting in Portugal. SCML was somehow granted even more powers after the passing of Legislative Decree number 282 in 2003. With this decree, SCML was the only operator granted a license to undertake online gambling operations across Portugal. Every other operator attempting to accept Portuguese players were blocked.
However, this ended in 2015 when Portugal’s authorities took a bold move towards opening up of the local betting market. During this time, it was now free for foreign bookies to apply for licenses, and as of June 28th, 2015, it came into force under Decree-Law no. 66. The Decree-Law no. 66 saw the establishment of the Legal Regime of Online Gambling and Betting (RJO).
Of importance to note is that since coming into effect, RJO has witnessed three implementations, with the latest having been on December 29th, 2017. Today, all bookmakers offering sports betting services across the country do hold a license issued by Portugal’s gambling regulator. Better yet, unlike before, there are plenty of bookmakers that accept Portuguese players, not forgetting the fact that player winnings are exempted from taxes.
Legal Portuguese Betting Sites
Are you aware of the eight legal betting sites that currently work in Portugal? Perhaps, you might not be aware of all. But to save you the trouble of painstakingly searching for them, we have done the work for you. The following are eight licensed bookies that you can freely access now:
Foreign bookies that accept players from Portugal
As you are aware now, there are only eight licensed betting sites in Portugal. What does this mean? Of course, lower odds, and a very limited sports betting market. Fortunately, foreign bookies that don’t own a license come in as an alternative since they have no bonus restrictions. Unlike licensed ones, international bookies offer plenty of betting markets at high odds. The following are some of the most popular international bookmakers that resonate well among online sports betting Portuguese bettors:
- Pinnacle Portugal – Plenty of bettors in Portugal do love this bookmaker for plenty of reasons. For instance, Pinnacle Portugal is optimized in Portuguese and consists of more than 20 sports to choose from. Players love it for its high odds, a variety of betting options, and popular payment methods, such as Paysafecard, Skrill, and Neteller.
- 22Bet Portugal – This bookie provides players with a website that consists of a Portuguese interface. Those looking to place bets here have more than 150 daily sporting events to bet on soccer matches. That’s not all. 22Bet Portugal has got more than 45 different sports for players to choose in addition to huge payment options.
- 1XBet Portugal – With more than 40 sports to bet on, 1XBet Portugal does offer Portuguese as a standard language on its website. Moreover, bettors can make free of charge and instant withdrawals on their winnings at 1XBet Portugal.
Betting online in Portugal – Deposits, and Withdrawals
A very popular deposit method, loved by a majority of players, is known as Multibanco. Multibanco is an interbank payment system that allows players to carry out instant transfer deposits free of charge. The only demerit about this payment option is that it cannot be used as a method of withdrawal. Besides Multibanco, other convenient methods include credit and debit card payments. If they so wish, players can use popular international payment methods, such as e-wallets.
The future of online sports betting in Portugal
With Portugal’s regulation of online gambling in 2015, only eight bookies managed to obtain a license to operate. Unfortunately, reputable names such as Bwin, Betfair, and Bet365 saw no need to serve the Portuguese market, citing a harsh business environment. The three couldn’t afford to pay an 8-16% tax on their gross profits. There seems to be no end in sight regarding such tough regulations, meaning that reputable international brands may not seek to serve the Portuguese market anytime soon. As it seems, Portuguese bettors will continue relying on foreign bookies lacking a local license but with impressive odds.
A full list of Portuguese betting sites
The following is a list of online bookies that accept Portuguese players:
- 22BET – 22BET has more than 1,000 live events on a daily basis, a cash-out option, and a 95% payout on top leagues.
- 1XBET – At 1XBET, players stand to bet on more than 50 sports, in addition to 1,000 live events daily.
- BETWINNER – Betwinner has more than 1000 pre-match events and the availability of horse racing.
- BETMASTER – Here, players can find up to 100 extra markets, Asian Handicaps, and a friendly mobile/desktop version.
- MELBET – At MELBET, players are assured of a fast and clean website and one of the most attractive welcome bonuses around.
- ReloadBet – There are enhanced accumulators here, plenty of special bets, and more than 20 sports to bet on every single time.
- TORNADOBET – This bookie has one of the quickest mobile pages and a new desktop site.
- LVBET – Besides special bets, customers with accounts here stand to enjoy special bets from time to time.
- Sportempire – Sportempire offers its customers more than 280 extra bets, more than 70,000 pre-match events, and more than 25 payment methods.
- BETREBELS – Despite being an upcoming bookie, Betrebels has a nice range of alternative bets and competitive odds.
Frequently Asked Questions
Sadly, you cannot. Besides being one of the most reputable brands globally, Bet365 has not made the initiative to apply for a license to operate in Portugal, meaning that you can't use it in Portugal.
Betrally Portugal ceased its operations from Portugal, meaning that Portuguese players can't place bets there. In short, this bookie isn't licensed to operate in Portugal.
While Betfair is one of those reputable international brands, it doesn't operate within the Portuguese online sports betting market. There's no sportsbook or an exchange accepting local players.
No. currently, all licensed bookies in the country pay huge taxes, and players' winnings aren't subjected to any taxes at all.
Gambling became legal in Portugal after the introduction of Decree-Law no.66. Anybody who wants to engage in online sports betting can do so without the fear of prosecution.