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Top international bookmakers | top foreign betting sites with Australian license

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Table of contents
Meet our author
Betting expert Elizabeth Winnie

Through a ranking system and serious and consolidated standards, we make a point of evaluating the best authorized betting sites in Australia. This information will not only allow you to have access to the best bonuses, but also to the best conditions to make the best sports bets online.

It’s no secret that sports betting is immensely popular in Australia. The average Aussie sports bettor spends somewhere in the neighborhood of $1,200 on bets every year. Of course, the mere fact that it’s legal and so easily accessible makes it so attractive to punters. In addition to having nearly 100 domestic betting agencies to choose from, Australians and the Australian dollar are accepted at many of the best international betting sites too.

It’s important to point out that many of the top-tier international bookmakers are Australian companies. Several Aussie online bookmakers have expanded their operations into other regions after finding massive success Down Under. Some are currently having a huge impact on the burgeoning legal sports betting market in the United States.

The best international betting sites Australia has to offer have one key thing in common: They are all licensed and regulated in Australia. They are allowed to provide their services to the domestic market because they have obtained interactive gambling licenses from one of the Australian regulatory bodies. However, legal online bookmakers that accept Australian punters must adhere to strict rules. For instance, the domestic and international bookmakers Australia boasts are not permitted to advertise their products to Australian punters. Furthermore, they are prohibited from offering Aussie punters any incentives such as free bets and bonus cash in exchange for signing up. But, to clarify, they are free to offer such benefits to existing customers. So, Aussie punters can claim a wide range of bonuses and other offers once they have registered at their online sports betting sites.

International bookmakers without Australian licenses

The most important piece of legislation that applies to online sports betting in Australia is the Interactive Gambling Act of 2001. The thing about this act is that it mainly pertains to the online sports betting sites that provide their services to Australians. As far as Aussie punters are concerned, the IGA of 2001 does not really place any prohibitions or limitations on them in terms of where they can place bets. They can sign up at sites that are licensed in Australia, or they can take their business to international sports betting sites that aren’t licensed in Australia.

So, what’s the difference between the best brand new betting sites with Australian licenses and international betting sites without Australian licenses? Well, from an Aussie punter’s perspective, one of the most significant differences is that punters that bet on horse racing and sports at domestically licensed sites are afforded the highest levels of player protection. In other words, they have recourse if they have a dispute. For instance, if an Aussie-licensed bookmaker refuses to pay you, then you can take your grievance to the appropriate Australian regulatory body.

Aussie punters often have some avenues of recourse with reputable international sports betting sites without an Australian license. However, those avenues of recourse are limited. Because those operators aren’t subject to Australian laws and standards, they don’t have to abide by them. Nevertheless, the best international bookmakers Australians play at do operate to the highest standards.

It’s also worth noting that Aussie-based online bookmakers support the Australian dollar and the most popular Aussie-friendly payment methods. Being able to use your own currency saves you from such things as exchange fees and having to calculate bet amounts in another currency. Having a wide range of popular Australian payment options makes deposits and withdrawals very easy and convenient.

One thing that gives international betting sites Australia has to offer a bit of an edge over domestic sports betting sites is their ability to offer live betting markets. To be clear, the best betting websites in Australia offer live betting markets. It’s just that they are prohibited from accepting live bets over the internet. Instead, Aussie punters must place their in-play bets over the telephone. Unfortunately, this isn’t the most efficient or practical way to place live bets because live odds are so volatile and can move against the bettor in the blink of an eye. By the time a punter dials the number and waits for the bookie to answer, those odds could have changed drastically.

Another advantage that offshore international betting sites without Australian licenses have is that they can offer welcome bonuses to attract new customers. If you look at the most popular international sportsbooks online, you can actually see what kind of welcome bonus or complimentary bet offer new customers can expect to receive. On the flip side, Australian online sports betting sites are forbidden from doing this. Prospective new customers can’t see if they qualify for complimentary bets, bonus cash, or other incentives. However, they will have access to special offers once they have signed up.

International betting sites’ bonuses

Most punters pay a lot of attention to betting bonuses when they are looking for the best online betting site to join. The top-tier international betting sites Australians gravitate toward tend to have some pretty spectacular offers. In particular, Aussie punters love no-deposit bonuses. These offers give Australian sports bettors the opportunity to try an online sportsbook and win real money. The great thing about no-deposit offers is that they don’t require claimants to use their own money.

International sports betting operators are known for offering very generous first-deposit bonuses. In most cases, all you need to do is open a new account and make a minimum deposit. New customers typically claim these welcome bonuses by simply opting in or by providing a bonus code. Some online bookmakers let you claim the bonus when you are filling out the registration form while others would have you claim it when you make your first deposit.

Generally speaking, there are three common types of welcome bonuses. Australians are typically eligible to receive risk-free bets, free bets, and bonus cash at the best international betting sites.

  • Bonus Cash Bonus cash is one of the most versatile online bookmaker offers. With these offers, international betting sites will match a percentage of your first deposit up to a certain amount. To illustrate, let’s say that you see a 100% match deposit welcome bonus up to $500. To claim your $500 in bonus cash, you would need to open a new betting account, claim the offer, and then make your first deposit. To keep it simple, you deposit $500 in order to get maximum value. The money you deposited will go into your regular player account and can be used to place real-money bets. The bonus cash, on the other hand, will be credited to a separate bonus account. You must then satisfy some conditions before you can withdraw the bonus funds. One of these conditions is referred to as the wagering requirement or rollover. What this means is that you need to stake a certain amount of money in bets before you can withdraw the bonus money. Getting back to our $500 in bonus cash that we just claimed, we’ll pretend that you must wager the bonus amount 10 times on events with odds of ½ or greater. That means the bonus cash claimant needs to stake a total of $5,000 in wagers. On top of that, those bets must be on events with odds of ½ (1.50) or more. You can still place bets with lower odds. It’s just that those bets will not count toward the wagering requirements. Once you have successfully satisfied the terms and conditions of the offer, the bookmaker will transfer the bonus funds from your bonus account to your regular betting balance. As such, the bonus cash is now eligible for withdrawal.
  • Risk-Free Bets Risk-free bets are becoming a very popular incentive these days. They are akin to house-staked bets in a way. If you want to claim a risk-free bet at one of the best international betting sites, you will have to open a new account, claim your risk-free bet, and then make a minimum deposit. You can then place your risk-free bet. The value of the bet bonus will be directly tied to the amount you deposit up to a certain limit. If your risk-free bet turns out to be a winner, then you collect your winnings as you normally would. However, if the bet doesn’t pan out in your favor, then the online sports betting site will refund your stake amount. So, if you use a $100 risk-free bet on Chelsea to beat Arsenal at even odds, and it wins, then you walk away with a $100 profit and the bonus is over. If it loses, then you would receive your $100 stake back.
  • Reload Bonuses The best betting sites don’t just offer bonuses to new Australian customers. They have plenty of bonuses and special deals for existing customers too. Aussie punters love reload bonuses in particular. Reload bonuses are more or less the same as welcome bonuses in terms of what you get. Existing customers who deposit funds can claim such things as free bets, risk-free ones, and good ol’ bonus cash. This ensures they can keep on taking advantage of offers long after they have used their welcome bonuses.
  • Free Bets Several top international betting sites offer stake-free bets. As is the case with risk-free ones, and bonus cash, the value of the complimentary bet is often related directly to the amount of your first deposit. Not always though. You’ll find that a lot of free bet offers give punters a standard stake amount no matter how much they deposit as long as the deposit amount meets the minimum requirement. For instance, you may encounter an international betting site that’s offering a $10 free bet when you make your first deposit of at least $10. It doesn’t matter if you deposit $10 or $1,000. You will receive a $10 free bet. As a point of interest, you may also receive a bundle of bets on the house. Using free or complimentary bets is quite easy, but there are a few key points of interest. For starters, if you claim a free bet, then you normally have to use it in one shot as opposed to breaking it down into multiple smaller bets. Additionally, you will likely be limited to betting on specific markets. Some can be used only on live betting markets while some are limited to pre-match markets. Then there are those that can be used on virtually any betting market. Perhaps the most noticeable difference between free bets and regular bets is that the free ones don’t include the stake amount in the returns. If you use your own money to place a $10 bet with odds of 1/1, a winning bet would net a return of $20. You have your $10 win amount and the $10 stake amount. If you win a $10 free bet with even odds, you’ll only receive the $10 win amount and not the $10 free stake. This is why you must put a lot of thought into using free of stake bets. You’ll find that most international betting sites will credit your free bet winnings to your withdrawable balance. Nevertheless, you should always check the T&Cs to make sure. Some bookmakers will issue your winnings as bonus cash which means you need to satisfy those pesky wagering requirements.

You should be aware that some international betting sites will credit your refund to your withdrawable balance while others will credit it to your bonus account. If the refund goes into your regular account balance, then you can withdraw it or use it to make more bets. If the money goes into your bonus account, then you will need to meet some conditions like we outlined in the bonus cash section above.

Best offshore betting sites

“What’s the best offshore site?” That’s the first question that almost every prospective Aussie punter asks. While it seems like a straightforward question, there is no real one-size-fits-all answer. Instead, you should ask which offshore betting sites best suit you. You see, punters have different preferences and requirements. The best online betting site for a high roller will have high deposit limits, high stake limits, and high win limits. For anyone who focuses on benefits and perks, the offshore betting sites best suited for them will offer valuable bonuses and loads of regular offers. A lot of Australians prefer playing at sites that support Australian currency and the most widely used Aussie payment solutions.

Before you sign up at international betting sites, you should ask yourself if the bookie can satisfy your unique prerequisites. Of course, this also applies to any domestic bookmaker you may be considering. By choosing the most appropriate sports betting site, you ensure that you will get the most out of the experience.

Which is the best international betting site?

Now that you understand that you need to find an online bookmaker that caters to your needs, we will expand on the subject. We know that the top international betting sites are the ones that best suit your own tastes. But there is actually a lot more to it. The top offshore betting sites best suited for Australians share a variety of traits.

License

Earlier, we mentioned the benefits of using online sports betting sites that are licensed by Australian regulatory entities. These Australian regulators are:

  • The Victorian Commission for Liquor and Gambling Regulation
  • Liquor and Gaming New South Wales
  • Queensland Office of Liquor and Gaming Regulation
  • Australian Capital Territory’s Gambling and Racing Commission
  • South Australia’s Consumer and Business Services
  • The Tasmanian Liquor and Gaming Commission
  • Western Australia Department of Racing, Gaming, and Liquor
  • Licensing Northern Territory

Obviously, plenty of highly respected international betting sites operate without an Australian license. Instead, they have licenses from other regulatory authorities. If not licensed in Australia, the best and most trustworthy offshore operators are all licensed by regulatory agencies like:

  • Malta Gaming Authority
  • Kahnawake Gaming Commission
  • United Kingdom Gambling Commission
  • Government of Gibraltar
  • Curacao eGaming

The key thing here is that the best online betting sites are licensed by a respected regulatory authority. You should avoid unlicensed internet bookmakers at all costs because there is nothing you can do if they are unethical, treat you unfairly, or steal your money.

Some of our favourite international sites with Australian licenses include:

  1. Bet365
  2. Unibet
  3. DraftKings
  4. Ladbrokes
  5. Betfair

The best odds

Experienced punters understand how crucial it is to get the best odds. Doing so gives them the best chances of being profitable over the long haul. To put this into perspective, you need to understand that bookmakers make money by charging a commission on the bets they take. This is called the odds margin or betting margin. The higher the commission or odds margin, the less value you get.

Imagine you are looking at the 2-way moneyline odds for an upcoming Aussie rules match. The odds for both teams are set at 1.90. Without confusing you with the math, this equates to an odds margin of 5.26% which is pretty reasonable. Now, you check the odds for this match at another bookmaker and see that both teams are priced at 1.85. This translates into an 8.11% commission which is definitely on the high side.

If you bet $100 at 1.90 at the first online sportsbook, you stand to win $90. That’s much better than the $85 that you stand to gain by betting the same team at the second online bookmaker. The best international operators always offer competitive odds which allow you to win more cash when you win your bets.

Betting markets

Another sign of a top-tier bookmaker is that it covers a huge selection of sports, eSports, and other events. If you enjoy betting on Aussie rules football, then the best international sites for you will feature lots of Aussie rules. There is little point in signing up at an offshore site that doesn’t offer odds on the sports or events you want to bet on.

Taking this idea a step further, the best international betting sites give you an abundance of betting options. Being limited to bet on sides, totals, and spreads can get a little boring after a while. You want access to an assortment of game props, team props, player props, and other betting opportunities. If you’ve ever checked out some of the most popular football betting apps, you’ve likely noticed that mainstream events like English Premier League football matches serve up hundreds of different unique bets.

Bonuses and promotions

Almost every online sportsbook offers some type of bonus. We went through the most common types earlier. Bookmakers hand out bonuses not because they are altruistic Santa Claus wannabes. Far from it. They do it because it’s one of the best ways to attract new customers.

You should realize that bonuses should not be your first concern when looking for the best sports betting sites. Just because a bookmaker welcome bonus is small doesn’t mean that it’s a bad bookie. In fact, it is sometimes an indicator of a great bookie. You see, some internet sports betting sites are so good and well-established that they don’t need to use gimmicks to lure customers.

The most respected international betting sites always make sure to make the terms and conditions of their bonuses clear and punter-friendly. You can look at the T&Cs and easily understand the rules and your obligations. By examining the T&Cs, you will soon discover that all bonuses and special offers are not created equally. Some are indeed very good deals, but there are also some terrible ones.

Speaking of offers, top-tier international betting sites serve up a wide range of ongoing deals. House-staked bets, enhanced odds, accumulator insurance, and cashback are just some of the special offers that can help you win more money on a regular basis.

Features

The best online betting site will have a variety of helpful features such as Cash Out. For those unfamiliar with it, the Cash Out feature allows punters to close their bets before the game they bet on concludes. This enables bettors to lock in profits and eliminate the possibility of losing their bets due to a late collapse. Alternatively, Cash Out can also help minimize your losses. If your bet is going up in flames, you could cash it out to receive a portion of your stake back.

Aside from other features like same-game parlays and name your bet, the best international bookies support live streaming. Aussie punters can launch their favorite football betting apps, place their bets, and then watch the action on a live stream. This feature is particularly helpful to live bettors who need to know exactly what’s on.

Top 10 international betting sites

Just to remind you, the best betting site is the one that satisfies all of your betting needs and more. With that said, we can confidently steer you in the right direction by giving you our recommendations. Before we name names, you should know that this top 10 list only features Australian betting sites that meet our highest standards.

These licensed operators offer competitive odds on the widest range of mainstream and niche sports. They accept the Australian dollar and support a great selection of Australia’s most widely-used payment options. While they don’t offer welcome bonuses, you can count on them to offer generous bonuses and ongoing offers after you sign up. You might even luck out and get a no-deposit bonus. Perhaps the most important thing that these sites have in common is that they will pay you quickly and treat you fairly. Here they are in no particular order.

  1. Ladbrokes - It has been one of the United Kingdom’s top bookies for nearly 150 years. Ladbrokes was granted an Australian license in 2013 and it is now one of the biggest players in Australia’s sports betting market. The site is laden with awesome features and you’ll always find interesting sports betting offers.
  2. PlayUp - PlayUp probably isn’t the biggest brand in Australia, but it is certainly one of the fastest-growing international betting sites. Many Australian sports bettors remember PlayUp as a fantasy sports site that launched in 2016. However, the operator recently acquired other bookmakers including MadBookie and ClassicBet and now it’s a premier destination for online sports betting, horse racing betting, and fantasy sports.
  3. Palmerbet - Palmerbet’s history dates back over 30 years. The company successfully operated several retail betting shops before taking its services online in 2013. Since then, Palmerbet has earned a solid reputation as a bookie that has committed to providing punters with superior odds and high limits.
  4. Betfair - Betfair isn’t just one of the most popular bookies Down Under and in the rest of the world. It also happens to be the only licensed online betting exchange in Australia. For those who don’t know what betting exchanges are, they allow punters to both take odds and lay odds. In other words, Betfair lets you become the bookmaker.
  5. Unibet - Since getting an Australian gambling license through their acquisition of BetChoice in 2012, Unibet has become one of the most reliable international bookmakers Australia has ever hosted. This giant of the sports betting industry boasts over 14 million customers in no fewer than 100 countries.
  6. Neds - Neds is a relatively new addition to the Australian sports betting scene. This Australian-owned bookie was founded in 2017 and it operates under a license from the NT Racing Commission despite being headquartered in Queensland. Australians will appreciate the great odds and fast payout times.
  7. Bet365 - The most reputable from all international betting sites. This is quite impressive considering how the company was based in a portable building when it was founded in 2000. Punters love the consistently high odds, great features, and fast withdrawals. In Australia, Bet365 is licensed by the NT Racing Commission.
  8. BlueBet - If you are looking for a reliable Australian-owned bookmaker that offers the most competitive odds, lots of exclusive deals, and plenty of payment options, then BlueBet might be the perfect fit for you. BlueBet was founded in 2015 with the aim of catering to Australian betting market and ideal for Aussie punters who want to bet on the AFL and NRL.
  9. BoomBet - Instead of distracting punters with flashy bonuses and promotions, this Australian bookmaker keeps it simple by offering the best odds on a huge selection of sports. Headquartered in Melbourne, BoomBet is licensed by the NT Racing Commission.
  10. TopSport - This online bookmaker has been around since 1998 and it is licensed by Liquor and Gaming New South Wales. You’ll always find excellent odds and some of the highest betting limits in Australia.

How do i bet in a foreign country?

To bet with a foreign online bookmaker, you must first confirm that the site accepts punters from Australia. If it does, and it meets your requirements, then you can open an account, claim a bonus, and fund your account.
Placing a bet is easy on any one of the international betting sites. Start by searching the menu for the match you want to bet on. Your pick will be added to your betslip as soon as you select it. You can then simply enter the stake amount and place your bet. If you win and want to withdraw your funds, simply fill out a withdrawal request. We suggest you use an Aussie-friendly payment option that allows you to deposit and withdraw.

Which is the most reliable site for bets?

Australian sports bettors can’t go wrong betting with any of the sites highlighted on our top 10 list of best betting sites - it doesn’t matter whether you use choose to bet on horse racing via desktop or prefer football betting apps. With that said, there are over 85 Australian bookmakers to choose from. While over 75 of them did not make our list, that doesn’t mean they aren’t just as reliable as the ones that did. All licensed Aussie online sportsbooks are required to meet strict standards to ensure that they are always reliable and trustworthy.
Before you settle on an international betting site or an Aussie bookmaker, we suggest that you read some reviews and customer feedback. This will give you a good sense of what to expect. We also recommend that you remember some of the tips and hints that you have absorbed after reading this guide.