Africa is home to over 1.2 billion people spread over 54 countries. It is one of the most diverse continents in the world, with a range of cultures, religions, economies and people. The rules and regulations for betting and online betting vary across the continent, but there is one thing for sure, African people love to bet! We’ll help you find the best African betting sites so you can get the best odds and make the most profit.
There is a range of fantastic bookmakers who cater to the needs of African punters, providing them with the ability to bet on almost every sport imaginable. Over the years there has been an upward trend in the amount bet online by African residents, and that looks to continue in years to come. Check out our top African betting sites below.
There are lots of things to consider when assessing which bookmaker to use. Of course, there is no necessity for exclusivity when it comes to using a bookie – so as long as the options are available, players can have accounts with as many different firms as they wish. But that doesn’t mean a blanket approach should be taken, and while there are many reputable bookmakers, there are also less legitimate operations (particularly within Africa), where the regulation is sketchy and the financial base is about as secure as a house of cards. It is therefore important to undertake due diligence (we can help with that!) to establish which are the go-to firms, and which are the ones to be avoided like the proverbial plague.
Most of the established European operators will accept African bettors, so as long as the regulation in the African country allows it (some will take on players regardless of the legality of it too). Firms who are licensed and regulated in Europe by the Malta Gaming Authority or by similar outfits are usually reliable and reputable. Within Africa, the quality of bookmakers varies. Some countries have their own bookmakers targeted at its citizens, and again it is important to research these firms and also inspect the regulatory authorities.
Apart from integrity, which has to be the main concern when picking a bookmaker (as hey, what is the point in winning lots of money if you can’t ever see it), other things players from Africa should consider when choosing a betting site is the quality of odds, number of markets, customer service, fees on deposits and bonuses. Some players love certain sports, and if they are not mainstream, that may force their hand as to which bookmakers to use. Other individuals want the best bonuses on offer and some search for the most competitive prices. A final factor to consider for African bettors when they are choosing which bookmaker to use is the currencies available for deposit and use on the site. Those who want a popular option such as US dollars, Euro or Pounds Sterling will have a wide range of choices, but if a customer is determined to get the currency of their native country, they may have to stick to local bookies.
Recommended Deposit Methods for African Betting Sites
When it comes to funding their betting accounts, there are a plethora of options for African bettors. Obviously, the country in which a bettor lives will have an impact upon their deposit options, as some jurisdictions have restrictions over payment methods and others will have options that are localised to them. Most of the big websites will accept debit/credit cards such as Visa and Mastercard, and historically this has been the default method for most bettors.
In recent years, there has been a rapid uptick in the number of bookmakers offering e-wallets as an option for bettors when they are looking to fund their accounts. As technology has improved and integration has become easier, the process of adding to a betting balance from an e-wallet has become almost seamless. Many players opt for e-wallets as their preferred deposit option due to the fact that they can quickly and cheaply transfer money back and forth between one or more bookmakers without it having to hit their bank account. Some of the most popular e-wallets utilised by bookies and bettors alike are Paypal, Neteller, Skrill and Skrill 1-Tap.
There are plenty of other options if depositing by Visa or e-wallet isn’t the player’s preference. Virtual prepaid cards such as Paysafecards and EntroPay are popular, and in countries where there are brick and mortar shops, it is often possible to load money onto an online account by depositing cash, or via a voucher. Mobile commerce services are becoming increasingly popular and bank wires and cheques are still accepted by the majority of bookmakers, although this method takes significantly longer.
Can African Players get Free Sports Bets and Bonuses?
You can bet your bottom dollar that African players can get sports bonuses, free bets and other concessions. As one of the fastest growing gaming markets in the world, African bettors have been targeted by marketing teams from international bookmakers who wish to expand their customer base.
Concessions can come in many forms and they vary by the bookmaker. Many will offer a matched deposit in order to entice new players onto their site. Others will provide a free bet after a certain amount has been staked, and those firms intent on keeping their loyal customer base will develop ad hoc and VIP promotions to make their players feel valued.
It is always important for African bettors to check the terms and conditions when signing up to a bookmaker after seeing an attractive bonus or offer. Things to check out are the terms and conditions, most notably the rollover requirements for the bonus. Very high rollover requirements can result in a high likelihood of the bettor losing both their free bet and their initial seed money. Another thing to look out for is the exempt countries. Certain bookmakers will exclude regions or countries from promotions, so it is always worth reading the fine print.
Mobile Betting in Africa
Mobile betting has exploded around the world as handheld devices have become faster, more affordable and internet speeds have increased. In Africa especially where not everyone can afford a computer, sometimes the cheapest and easiest way to bet online is through a mobile device. Most websites now offer mobile optimised websites which automatically load when visited by the user, and the big firms typically also offer a downloadable iPhone or Android app which allows players a bit of additional speed and functionality.
Popular Sports to Bet on in Africa
In Africa, football is a huge sport. The African Cup of Nations is the major football tournament that pits all of the teams in the continent against each other, and African children idolize their national heroes as well as those who play in the top leagues around the world, such as Ronaldo and Messi. Naturally, it is the most popular betting sport, but there are other disciplines which enthral bettors from around the continent.
In South Africa, cricket is extremely popular, and the national team are always to the fore on the world stage. South Africans also have a very strong horse racing program with many elite equine beasts, and the citizens of the country love to bet on the races. Horse racing is also growing in countries like Kenya also.
Gambling Laws for African Betting Sites
With over 50 countries within the continent of Africa, it would be foolish to try and make a blanket statement as to the gambling laws. Within Africa, there are some liberal nations who encourage gambling and online gambling, and of course, there are other more restrictive regimes who try and prohibit or heavily regulate it.
Looking at the big hitters, countries such as Ghana have very relaxed gambling laws. In Kenya, there used to be an online monopoly (BetKenya.com), but after it closed there was no domestic firm, leaving bettors free to explore the options in the rest of Africa, Europe and beyond. In Nigeria, the legislation is murky and a little confusion, but there is no doubt that there is online gambling, with a few successful domestic online bookies operating. In Egypt, there are no reputable online betting sites and land-based gambling is illegal for residents, with only tourists being allowed to bet, but most of the main European bookmakers will allow its residents to open accounts with them.
The Future of Online Betting in Africa
Gambling is permitted in some form or another in the majority of African nations. Obviously, there is the odd exception, but as the continent is still impoverished in many parts, and in the developmental phase, most governments do not have the resources to implement strict prohibition or regulation even if they wished to do so. Bribery is still commonplace in most countries and the reality is, if individuals want to strike a bet, they usually can.
The figures suggest that in recent years there has been a trend of an increasing amount being spent on online gambling, and this has resulted in the rise of a number of bookmakers and casinos local to Africa, and it has also prompted more established firms in Europe and beyond to open their doors and advertise to African players. As technology continues to become more accessible, it can only be expected that online gambling will continue to rise.
African Betting FAQ
Do African Bettors Pay Tax on Sports Betting Winnings?
Most African bettors will not pay tax on their sports betting winnings. A large majority of players will use major European sites, and as such will just receive the funds back into their bank account after they have withdrawn. There is a tax paid, and it has gone up, but that percentage is levied as a corporate tax on firms who offer betting within Africa, to African players.
Which Odds Format is Used for Betting in Africa?
Widely considered to be the easiest to understand, the decimal odds format is used by many African bookmakers. Many firms will have the option of using other formats such as fractional or Malay etc. but the most popular is decimal.
Can I Bet Online from Another Country?
It depends on a couple of factors, but the answer is usually yes. The main thing is whether the bookmaker accepts players from other countries. Some local African bookmakers will only serve their nation, but most betting sites offer their services to players from around the world. The only way a player would be restricted is if they had signed up in one country, but were then trying to bet from another country which was banned by the bookmaker. They usually have an IP tracker in place which would prevent the use of the bookie from the aforementioned banned country.
How Do I Make a Profit from African Betting Sites?
A very good question. Being selective is key to making a profit in the long run. It is impossible to be an expert on every sport and every match/event within that sport, so in order to be profitable, bettors need to be disciplined and only place money on events in which they think they have an edge. That and a disciplined staking strategy is key to success.
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