What is it that distinguishes a great online bookmaker from its competitors? How do you know if a bookie is legal, licensed and safe? Which online bookmakers offer the best odds and all-round service?
BettingSite.com.au is here to answer those questions and show you what to look for when selecting the best online bookmaker for you.
Top online bookmakers 2022
Top Australian online bookmakers
The recent boom in online betting means Australians now have myriad options when having a flutter over the Web. Not all bookmakers are equal, however, and there are a special few that provide better odds and all-round customer service than the competition. These, in our opinion, are the very best online bookmakers for Aussie punters right now:
Rivalry.com is a new Australian online bookmaker which launched in May, 2022, after cutting its teeth in the Canadian gambling market. Rivalry has got a massive focus on esports, which is a growth area in online betting, and we like that they are offering a point of difference. Rivalry, as a point of different to other bookmakers online, does not offer horse racing wagering but more than makes up for this with a plethora of esports markets. These esports markets put bigger online bookmakers like Sportsbet and the TAB to shame. If there was one criticism of this bookmaker in their early days, it would be that they don’t have downloadable betting apps available, although this might change in the future.
The advantage of its size and reach is Unibet’s ability to offer competitive odds in racing and sport, while its bookie rewards program is among the best in the industry.
The thing that makes TopBetta different is the betting tournaments they host. This means you can buy into a variety of tournaments and be given a set amount of funds to bet with. You then place your bets and the winner, or leaders, are given the pool that accumulated through entries. Topbetta also has competitive sport and racing odds with strong promotions surrounding the big events in Australia. They also made a splash with their Global Tote Product which launched in 2016.
Customers can take or lay odds on an enormous array of sports betting and racing markets from all over the globe. You can choose from a variety of different prices and pools for the same bet – a luxury not afforded at regular online bookies.
Betfair is the only online betting exchange licensed to operate in Australia, which makes it a must-try for the discerning gambler who wants more options and maximum flexibility.
Best bookmaker promotions and specials
The top online bookies run dozens of weekly betting promotions to ensure their customers enjoy the best value on the biggest sport and racing markets. These can include cashback specials for AFL and NRL matches, multi insurance for A-League and European soccer, and any number of bonuses, odds boosts and top-price guarantees for major horse racing and greyhound meets. You will also find big value deals on marquee events such as the Olympics, FIFA World Cup, Wimbledon, Tour de France and more.
Best horse racing bookmakers
The Australian horse racing industry makes up a huge percentage of all betting that takes place in Australia. While the Melbourne and Sydney racing scenes are regarded as the cream of the racing down under, every state in Australia has vibrant racing industries.
Traditionally all horse racing bets were placed via on-course bookies or via the various Totes across Australia, which have largely been a monopoly for Tabcorp and Tatts, who are now a merged entity, making even bigger betting pools.
This merger came about because of their market share being eroded by the gluttony of online bookmakers that are licensed to take bets on Australian horse racing.
- What is the best online bookmaker for horse racing?
It’s really hard to look past Sportsbet in Australia, although BetEasy and Neds both provide sensational services to both seasoned and novice punters.
- Which bookmaker has the best odds for horse racing?
This largely comes down to each individual race, rather than being able to determine which has the best odds in a sweeping statement. Use odds comparison services and hold multiple accounts to get the best racing odds.
- What bonuses and promotions are available on horse racing?
Because of laws in NSW, BettingSite.com.au chooses not to promote bonuses and promotions on this website. Read Horsebetting.com.au for more information about bonuses.
- What are the biggest races in Australia?
The obvious one is the Melbourne Cup, but the entire Melbourne Spring Carnival is hard to top. The Championships in Sydney and the Magic Millions on the Gold Coast are other massive carnivals.
HORSE RACING GUIDES
Best AFL bookmakers
The AFL is the centrepiece of sports betting in the southern states of Australia, running from March through to the last Saturday in September every year.
With 10 teams in Victoria and two in each of Western Australia, NSW, South Australia and Queensland, the AFL has successfully expanded right across the country and the punters have followed.
The Australian Football League has approved a number of licensing bodies to allow their operators to take bets on this competition, and has named BetEasy as the official betting partner of the AFL Premiership.
Major fixtures on the AFL calendar that draw increased betting interest include the finals series, grand final and blockbuster matches such as the annual ANZAC Day clash between Collingwood play Essendon, the WA Derby featuring West Coast and Fremantle, and the Showdown grudge matches between Adelaide and Port Adelaide.
- What is the best bookmaker for AFL?
We get asked this question a lot and again it’s hard to not name Sportsbet as the no.1 betting site for AFL bets. Having said this they don’t always have the best odds. If you are serious about turning a profit betting on Aussie Rules it’s smart to hold multiple bookie accounts, with BetEasy, Neds and Bet365 all providing a super-service.
- What bookie has best AFL odds?
Again this will come down to individual matches, but you will generally find only small fluctuations across the different bookmakers in Australia. Some bookmakers have things like enhanced or inflated odds, where you choose a game to make the odds more in your favour.
AFL BETTING GUIDES
Best NRL bookmaker sites
The National Rugby League competition is arguably the most hard-fought league competition in the world, with it running during the winter months in Australia.
While the AFL dominates in the southern states, the NRL rules in the upper reaches of east coast, with Sydney and Brisbane the twin centres of all things rugby league.
Betting on individual NRL matches is highly possible, with hundreds of markets launched on gameday, or when the teams are named, which is usually a few days before kickoff.
There are also NRL markets all year round, which can include things like a market for ladder leader at the end of the home and away season, premiership winner and even on individual awards like the Dally M Medal (league best and fairest) and the Clive Churchill Medal (best on ground in the grand final).
- What is the best bookmaker for NRL?
Sportsbet and Ladbrokes both have outstanding products for NRL betting and a huge slice of the market share in NSW and QLD.
- What bookmaker has the best odds for NRL?
Again this comes down to the individual market you are looking for. There is often a few percentage difference between bookmakers markets which can make all the difference in the long run when wagering on the NRL.
NRL BETTING GUIDES
Other major sports at Australian online bookmakers
Australians truly are spoilt for choice when it comes to betting with online bookmakers, with our regulated industry among the most advanced in the world. This means we can bet on everything from the latest reality television series from right around the world, to the various domestic and international sporting leagues.
The A-League is the no.1 soccer league in Australia and features many household names, including a host of star imports from overseas. In terms of betting, all of the bigger Aussie online bookmakers do take bets on this competition, with Sportsbet, BetEasy and Unibet and Bet365, through their strong ties to Europe, all featuring a first class betting experience.
Competitions like the Super Rugby, which Australia has five teams in, also draw extensive betting interest, not just down under, but in New Zealand, South Africa, Japan and the United Kingdom, where there are teams based. All of the best regulated bookies will feature markets on this competition.
It would also be remiss not to mention the NBL and basketball betting at Aussies bookmakers. For starters the NBL is the national competition, which does get some betting interest. However it’s the NBA which has truly captured the Aussie public’s imagination, with Melbourne’s own Ben Simmons among the best players in the world.
Read our guides to betting on sports at Australian online bookmakers:
SPORTS BETTING GUIDES
Legal online bookmakers in Australia
The two defining differences when choosing an online bookmaker to wager with in Australia, are whether they are based here, or they are based offshore. You should always choose the former option if you want to stay within the confines of the law.
Australian states all have different Liquor and Gaming or Racing and Wagering departments which regulate gambling in their jurisdiction, which has provided plenty of problems for both the Government, hell-bent on taxing the industry, and online bookmakers, who are finding it increasingly hard to make a profit after the introduction of the Point of Consumption bookmakers tax being slowly rolled out right across Australia.
The majority of Australia’s online betting sites are licensed in the Northern Territory, although some hold multiple licenses. BetEasy, Sportsbet and Bet365 are all regulated by the Northern Territory Government, while Palmerbet holds gambling licenses in the Palmer brothers’ home state of New South Wales.
If a real money bookmaker site isn’t registered with an Australian state or territory, it isn’t worth the risk. To find out more about online bookmakers and their legal obligations in your state read our guides.
STATE BOOKMAKER GUIDES
Deposit methods at Aussie online bookmakers
There’s no point joining an online bookmaker if it doesn’t offer a selection of convenient and secure online payment solutions. The best Australian bookmakers, such as those we endorse at BettingSite.com.au, support a number of trusted methods for making instant deposits and fast withdrawals in AUD currency:
All real money transactions at our bookmaker sites are safeguarded by certified SSL (Secure Socket Layer) digital encryptions, which means your cash and identity are protected by bank-standard safety measures. Processing times may vary depending on which payment option you choose, so check the bookmaker’s FAQ section for more details.
LIST OF DEPOSIT METHODS
Instant Deposit Methods
- Credit Card
- Debit Card
- Apple Pay
- Visa Checkout
- Bet365 Visa
- Cash Top Up
Non-instant deposit methods
Mobile betting apps for iOS and Android
The advent and ongoing advancement of mobile betting technology has made it easier than ever for Australian punters to make real money wagers on the go. Australia truly has some of the top sports betting apps in the world. Each of our approved online sports bookies has fully integrated iOS apps for Apple iPhone and iPad betting, available for free download at the App Store. If you use a Samsung, Sony, Motorola, LG, HTC, or any other smart device that runs on open-source software, you can get the Android app directly from the bookie by tapping the links below:
You don’t need an app to have a flutter on your smartphone or tablet device, as all of our trusted mobile betting sites have sophisticated HTML5 browser platforms optimised for all major operating systems. If you are a BlackBerry or Windows Phone user and want the convenience of a one-touch application, you can make a Web app in a jiffy by visiting any of the mobile bookie websites above and selecting ‘Add to Home Screen’ from your in-browser settings.
New Australian online bookmakers
Australia has one of the most advanced betting landscapes in the world, with new betting sites constantly being launched. The following online bookmakers are the newest on the scene down under.
- October 2019, PlayUp.com.au:
Most online bookmakers are much of a muchness in essence, if not always in quality. PlayUp is different gravy, however, as it combines traditional sports betting and racing products with a fantasy gaming element not seen before. If that sounds a bit gimmicky, fear not, because classic punting is PlayUp’s bread and butter. Best of all, these guys are 100% Australian owned and operated.
- August 2018, BetEasy.com.au:
The Australian online bookmaking scene has undergone something of a solidification in recent times, with global gambling giant Pokerstars buying both Crownbet and William Hill in Australia, merging them under a new entity BetEasy.com.au. Boss Matthew Tripp wanted to use the SportingBet.com.au brand, but was stopped in the courts by Sportsbet, who claimed copyright infringement. Aussies will be familiar with BetEasy because before their merger with Crown Resorts and branding as Crownbet, the company used this name.
- October 2017, Neds.com.au:
Former Ladbrokes boss Dean Shannon launches his new project, Neds.com.au, with a huge budget advertising campaign kicking off proceedings just in time for the 2017 Melbourne Cup. Under 12 months later Shannon was to sell the brand to Ladbrokes, making a sizeable profit and further enhancing his reputation as a man with a midas touch in the gambling industry. Neds still operates independently to Ladbrokes and has a big sports betting and racing following.
- November 2015, BlueBet.com.au:
Legendary Aussie bookie Michael Sullivan launches a new brand in Australia aimed at taking on the biggest of the punters. The bookie only features horse racing and has not really become a mainstream bookie, but many of the biggest whales in Australia do hold an account there, as they look to get one up on the former Sportingbet boss.
Customer service and support
The big difference between the best bookies and the rest is how they treat their customers. The leading Australian betting sites have built their reputations on providing punters with outstanding service 24 hours a day, seven days a week, all year round. Whether you are troubleshooting a technical issue, or you want to request a bet market that isn’t listed, you should be able to get in touch with friendly and professionally trained support staff day and night via live chat, toll-free telephone, or email.
Top online bookmakers overseas
While Australian can not sign up at these top online bookmakers, they are some of the best available to our international readers. The top International online bookmakers are generally based in places like the United Kingdom, Malta or even Gibraltar, with literally hundreds of bookies operating in these places.
The best bookmakers online based overseas generally have some features that you won’t find at the top Australian bookies, including live betting, sign up bonuses, free bet offers and some outstanding promotions. Aussies cannot sign up at these online bookmakers because they do not hold a license in this country.
The top online bookmakers we promote to our overseas readers include:
- 888Sport: One of the biggest online gambling brands in the world, 888Sport offers betting on sports, horse racing and various other novelty markets. 888Sport has a great bookmaker app available to both Android and iOS users, with it available to download in countries like the UK, NZ and much of Europe. 888Sport has even pushed into many states in the USA, which is no surprise given their status as one of the best bookmaker sites in the world. 888Sport review.