Online Gambling in Spain
Spain’s betting regulations changed drastically in 2011 with the establishment of the Spanish Gambling Act to regulate its massive gambling market. All forms of gambling have been legal in Spain for over 30 years. However, before the 2011 regulation, the 17 autonomous communities within the country had full control over the management of wagering.
Due to the Spanish government’s former relaxed stance on gambling, there were many decades in which illegal betting shops were a common occurrence. Although they were prohibited, the Spanish government did nothing to shut them down. Additionally, online betting was both open and unregulated, allowing many Spanish citizens to play on such sites as Unibet and BWIN to place online wagers.
After the 2011 betting regulations, many online betting websites like Pinnacle Sports and Unibet closed its doors to Spanish citizens, while others obtained a Spanish license. Let's take a look at online gambling in Spain.
- The Spanish Gambling Act
- Online Gambling Websites in Spain
- How to Bet Online in Spain
- The Safety of Spanish Betting Sites
- Depositing and Withdrawing Money
- .es Domain Names for Regulated Spanish Betting Sites
- Types of Betting Allowed in Spain
- Online Sports Betting in Spain
- Popularity of Online Wagering in Spain
The Spanish Gambling Act
The primary purpose of the Spanish Gambling Act is to standardize regulation of the online betting industry in Span, which requires national coordination. That being said, the act still gives power to the autonomous communities to decide many of the gambling policies and regulations in their regions. In particular, The Spanish Gambling Act regulates national gaming operations through electronic means, which includes television, mobile phones, Internet and other such communication systems.
Online Gambling Websites in Spain
Although such gambling websites as Unibet left the Spanish market, the most popular betting site in Spain, BWIN, stayed on board and obtained a license that allows it to operate legally within Spain. BWIN sponsors Real Madrid and is considered their on-shirt sponsor, which gives them excellent exposure to the Spanish market and allows them to be the largest wagering website that services the market.
How to Bet Online in Spain
Betting online in Spain is an incredibly simple process. All you have to do is open an account with the wagering website of your choice. Just make sure that it has a .es domain name and is regulated. You will know whether or not a site is legal by looking for the logo listed on the bottom of the site.There are many regulates betting sites. However, some of the top ones are Betfair, BWIN, and Bet365.
To use any online betting site in Spain, you must first register for an account which requires that you input your DNI number (Documento Nacional de Identidad). You will may have to email a scanned picture of your DNI to the website as well to secure your identity.
The Safety of Spanish Betting Sites
Keep in mind that Spanish wagering websites are fully regulated, which means that you can rest assured that you and your money will be treated fairly. However, this also means that large wins will be reported on your taxes.
Depositing and Withdrawing Money on an Online Betting Website
Once you’ve opened an account, it will be time to make a deposit. Most online betting sites give you plenty options to choose from. All of them accept VISA and MasterCard, and many allow you to deposit money using Skrill or PayPal. Once you’ve funded your account, you can place bets up to your balance. Whenever you wish to do so, you can cash out your full balance or winnings by requesting a check or through wire transfer, Skrill or PayPal.
Regulated Online Betting Sites Have a .es Domain
Because of the Spanish Gambling Act, those operators that allow citizens of Spain to gamble must receive a license from the National Gambling Commission within Spain. The Act mandates that all licensed operators use a .es domain as a way to prevent any unregulated and illegal websites from providing wagering services to Spanish citizens. Because of this, there have been 50 or so sites that have closed down and several legal proceedings for those who have ignored the regulation orders.
What Types of Online Gambling is Available?
Under the Spanish Gambling Act, many forms of both online and physical betting were regulated including fixed odds, pool betting, sports betting, horse race wagering, and other such forms of fixed odds betting. However, the Act does not allow bingo games and in-play betting in Spain, though some autonomous regions allow it such as Madrid.
The current Spanish gambling laws require that operators obtain a license for every individual gambling product that they offer. Because of this many websites only offer a single gambling product such as betting or just casino games. That being said, BWIN is special in that it offers all types of products from bingo to poker to casino to betting.
BWIN.es also has an extensive list of sports that you can sports bet on including Futsal, American Football, Ski Jumping and Biathlon just to name a few. Additionally, for every type of sport offered, there are an extensive number of league options to choose from. For example, if you want to bet on football then you’ll have your choice of the English Premier League, La Liga, Series A, and Bundesliga amongst others.
On all types of matches, you are also given a comprehensive list of betting options such as home/away/draw, handicap betting, and betting under or over the goal. Many websites also offer live betting around the clock, as no matter what time of the day it is there are usually dozens of live matches that are available to be bet on.
Online Sports Betting in Spain
Spain’s regulation has opened the doors for regulated and legal sports betting website, which caused 26 regulated Spanish sportsbook websites to start offering their services in the first year alone.
Playing on a site that is not domestic is illegal in Spain, but there are enough local bookies that you’ll have no trouble finding a site that suits your needs. In Spain, online sports betting only falls behind lottery games in popularity.
How Popular is Online Wagering in Spain?
Although regulated and legal online wagering has only been offered to Spanish citizens a few years ago, the online gameplay has been growing massively. This is especially the case, as Spanish citizens love to bet on their own players who compete Internationally.
Although Spanish gamblers may not have been pleased with Spain’s Gambling Act, there is no denying that it allows residents to play their favorite games safely and with the assurance that their money will be paid out fairly. If you are interested in trying out your hand in online gambling on a regulated Spanish sports betting site such as BWIN.es, then make sure that you know your limits and above all have fun!