Americas Bookie sportsbook…the name pretty much tells you all you need to know. This bookmaker was founded back in 2003 and have an online sportsbook, racebook and casino. They focus their services primarily on the North American market. As any seasoned bettor will know, online gambling is illegal in the USA – but that hasn’t deterred a few companies from setting up shop in foreign jurisdictions and continuing as normal.
Americas Bookie chose the popular betting haven of Costa Rica to park their business, and they have been operating successfully out of the country for a number of years. American-centric betting sites tend to be a little different to their European focused counterparts, with varying layouts, methods of displaying odds and the markets on offer. In this review, we assess all aspects of America’s Bookie’s service, providing our opinion on whether they should be recommended as a bookmaker with which customers can expect a positive betting experience.
What Does The Website Look Like?
One generalisation thrown about regarding North American facing sites is that their websites look amateurish in their appearance, and fall behind the systems, graphics and software of Asian and European bookmakers. Unfortunately in this case, the generalisation has been proved somewhat correct. The homepage has a number of graphics in the centre of the page, offering the concessions, bonuses and markets available on the website. To the right is a sign-up form to join the sportsbook. Interestingly Americas Bookie doesn’t enable viewers of the site to view the odds until they have registered for an account.
Once logged in, the layout is unusual. There is a list of different bet types displayed across a horizontal menu bar, and after clicking on the desired bet, a list of sports and markets appears. The text is basic and the colour scheme is unimaginative, but it does a job. Once a sport has been selected, all the varying games and markets for each match are shown. When a bet has been chosen, customers can then decide their stake, and can choose from Wager Amount/Risk Amount/To Win Amount.
The website doesn’t conform to the ubiquitous 3 column layout adopted by the majority of bookmakers, and there are certainly no frills about it, but after a few minutes of navigating around, it becomes user friendly enough.
If there is one thing that Americas Bookie do well, it is bonuses and concessions. There are a variety of bonuses depending on how much customer’s deposit and as the bonus percentages get bigger, the rollover requirements also increase. These bonuses seem to change very regularly and appear discretionary. On top of a sign-up bonus of $1000 (up to 100% of first deposit, with a 16 time rollover requirement), there are plenty of reload bonuses and other specials, such as “Make a deposit of $250 or more between, you can choose a team to participate in the MLB 33 Club. If your MLB team scores exactly 3 runs (win or lose) in the third inning, you win $133.”
Judging by the bonuses offered on Americas Bookie, they appear to be targeting the bigger staking bettors.
Sports Markets & Odds
Offering a real varied list of sports for customers to bet on is not typically how the American bookmakers do it. Instead, they offer popular betting events such as basketball, American football, tennis, baseball, soccer, golf, MMA, boxing and cricket.
Americas Bookie offers some fantastic odds on a variety of sports. For instance, let us look at the odds for the MLB (baseball) match between Atlanta Braves v Washington Nationals. The competitiveness of odds can be assessed by the total book percentage which is the figure produced when all of the odds in an event are converted to percentages. A book with no inbuilt in margin for the bookmaker would work out to 100%, so the closer to 100%, the more desirable for the bettor.
The Moneyline in the Braves v Nationals game worked out to a very generous 101.7%, which is industry leading. The Over/Under market isn’t quite so good but is still very competitive when considering other bookmakers around the world, compiling to 104.5% and finally the Total Number of Runs also worked out to the same percentage. Were these strong figures replicated in other sports? The answer is yes. For example, tennis matches in the ATP Rioch Open (not one of the main events on the tennis calendar), produced Moneyline markets with odds that compiled between 104.5-105.5% (industry average sits around 106%). Boxing matches are often priced up a little more conservatively by bookmakers as the boxing trading departments are often a little thinner staffed and knowledge of the sport is incomplete, but the odds provided by America’s Bookie stay in line with other sports, with the win market and the Over/Under rounds betting on the Saul Canelo Alvarez v Gennady Golovkin fight worked out to 104.5-105.5%.
All the sports are very competitively priced, and although there isn’t a tonne of options when it comes to prop bets, big staking bettors tend to stick to the main markets which are Moneyline, Spread and Over/Under.
Currency & Banking Options
Although the website lists a variety of different currencies for customers to choose from, customer services confirmed that at present the only currency they will accept is US dollars.
There are a few ways for customers to fund their accounts. Credit/debit cards can cause issues at American banks due to the laws, so the sportsbook keeps away from them.
Person2Person – Min – $100 / Max – $1,000
Bank wire – Min – $1,000 / Max – None
Bank draft – Min – $500 / Max – $2,000 – Fund your account with a USPS or Money Gram
Bitcoin – Min – $300 / Max – $5,000
Person2Person – Min – $100 / Max – $450 (Fee $50)
Bank draft (regular mail) – Min – $500 / Max – $500 (Free)
Bank draft (registered mail) – Min – $500 / Max – $1,000 (Fee – $45)
Bank draft (Priority courier) – Min – $3,500 / Max – $9,500 (Fee $65)
Bitcoin – Min – $500 / Max – $2,000 (Fee 2%)
As is common practice in the Americas, the firm charge for withdrawals. Euro bettors would baulk at the idea of paying $45 dollars up to pull their money out, but in a climate where it is very much cloak and dagger, customers who sign up for these sites normally know that fees are part of the gig.
At present, Americas bookie is only accepting clientele from the United States of America and Canada. As such, residents of all other countries are restricted from using the website.
Languages / Customer Support
As it stands, the only language supported on the website is English.
Customer support at Americas Bookie is strong – the phone lines are manned 24/7 and customers can reach the team at 1-877-482-6948 or via e-mail at info@AmericasBookie.com. Additionally, there is a live chat function which enables clients to quickly interact with customer services. The individuals operating the chat service are polite, well informed and are quick to answer any questions or queries that customers may have.
For those individuals who want to find answers to their questions without conversing with staff at Americas Bookie, there is an online Help Centre which answers general betting queries as well as giving sports betting advice.
Although there is no specific mobile app (it wouldn’t be allowed due to promoting illegal activity), Americas Bookie does have a mobile optimised site that loads on iOS, Android and other operating systems. The homepage is neatly put together and there is a dropdown menu at the top of the page. Beneath, customers can sign-up or login, and the rest of the page is populated with graphics, general information and a sign-up form. Once a customer clicks on the login button, they have to scroll down the page to input their sign-in information. From there the site is easy to navigate around, and it looks a little more professional than the desktop site, but there is still room for improvement when it comes to aesthetics. However, for functionality, the site will do.
Americas Bookie sportsbook may lack the pizzazz, design and bells and whistles of its European counterpart bookmakers, but it has extremely strong fundamentals that will entice the serious bettor to open an account with the firm. Recommended.