Cryptocurrency will continue to grow and eventually dominate the sports betting industry. Review this guide and don’t get left behind.
The rise of cryptocurrency in the sports wagering industry, carried by the explosion of Bitcoin, has transformed our digital landscape to the point where it is changing the way we gamble online and settle up with our players and agents.
When it comes to gambling, it’s easy to see why more and more people are jumping on the crypto bandwagon to enjoy a more fulfilling, all-around gaming experience.
While the market for crypto has been in a state of flux since the birth of Bitcoin in 2009, the gambling industry has embraced it in a way that other sectors have not. The casual player might not be aware of this shift, and it is important that you educate yourself on the benefits of crypto betting, because there are many. Being digital in nature, it nixes the issues which trip up many sports bettors who want to play globally, such as currency exchange or quick withdrawal of funds. Aside from the ease of use, there is also a level of anonymity provided which makes any form or tracking nay on impossible.
Moving money internationally is safer than ever and easier to access. For all the skeptics out – there I hear you; but, I hope to show in this article that crypto is the way to go, the way of the future and a valuable tool to add to your betting workstation.
Pros of Cryptocurrency sports wagering
For those looking to embark on the path of cryptocurrency sports betting, it is paramount to first understand what you are doing and why. The differences between crypto and traditional currency are small but important to understand.
Let’s cover the upside to betting on sports with crypto.
First and foremost, for many sports bettors, is the anonymity mentioned above, something that players have struggled with for decades. Perhaps no portion of the process is more important to have discretion than the deposit stage. The blockchain protocols keep these types of transactions, and its users, free of any trackable money trail left behind. Essentially this makes your plays close to impossible to trace and protect your banking information. For various preseason it is very beneficial for sports bettors to have a safe, secure and private way to deposit and withdraw funds from their betting accounts. With crypto, the only information that is sent with your deposits is the actual deposit itself, or the funds, if you will. Any details about you personally or your account are not provided when transferring funds. I don’t need to elaborate much on how this will benefit any sports gambler, casino player or anyone related to the industry. Frankly, this alone should be enough of a reason for many players to make the jump into the 21st century and start betting with cryptocurrency.
Another prime reason to get into cryptocurrency betting is the fast and free deposits that many outlets offer. While most bookmakers using traditional currencies take time to process transactions for various and frustrating reasons, sending money back and forth to a cryptocurrency wall is instantaneous. This is a huge plus for sports bettors who need to move a lot of money into an account or move funds frequently. Not to mention the low low price of free which is hard to pass up for deposits at your sportsbook.
Much like deposits, withdrawals are also ideal to do done using cryptocurrency. While most books offer a variety of payment methods, they each require a certain amount of time to process. With crypto everything is done in real-time so the only waiting period is for the book to approve the transfer and bam, bob’s your uncle. The approval time is quite quick generally speaking so you will have your funds quickly, and with a lower fee than other currencies.
Two-factor authentication, or 2FA, is a verification process that adds another layer of protection to your sports betting account. It takes your security a step further than just single-factor authentication which is basically your username and password. Adding that extra layer allows you to link a cell-phone or another applicable device and really lock down any nefarious types from easily accessing your accounts.
Cons of Betting with Cryptocurrency
As with anything in life, there are always two sides to every coin and cryptocurrency is no different. First off is an obvious downside for anyone with knowledge of crypto, and that is the fluctuation in the markets which creates volatility in your bankroll. These currencies are trading 24/7 which means your account will have a different balance minute to minute. This creates a terrifying situation for some when they realize that their bankroll will be in flux even when they are not placing bets. Some gamblers, however, find this extra excitement to be worth the risk.
The real problem here is that history has shown a few specific events which saw the price of a crypto, specifically Bitcoin, see huge swings in just a matter of hours, both up and down. Over the last few years, many a fortune has been made in days using BTC, but just as many went up in flames. While we haven’t seen an even that significant yet in 2019, one never knows when the next one will pop.
Be careful to check if your book converts crypto to USD on deposit or not. If they do your actual sportsbook account balance will not be in a state of flux. If your book does, in fact, keep funds in cryptocurrency this means your money inside your book will be ever-changing along with the funds in your e-wallet.
Another smaller hurdle is the general lack of knowledge many have about cryptocurrencies and how to use them. Especially when it comes to money, people are usually quite reticent to try new things as it were. This unfamiliarity with the product can frustrate many and even scare off some. To help this we’re going to move into a quick guide on how to use cryptocurrencies from soup to nuts.
Buying, Depositing and Betting with Cryptocurrencies
For the purposes of this section, we will just focus on Bitcoin as the details for certain currencies do vary, but this will apply to most.
First up is to familiarize yourself with a pair of websites you will be spending a fair amount of time using, Coinbase.com and Blockchain.com. These sites each serve a crucial function in your ability to gamble with Bitcoin. Coinbase is where you will be buying your Bitcoin using your preferred method of transfer. It’s a straightforward site that any noob can figure out and has a history of high levels of security & anonymity.
Blockchain is another key ingredient in your Bitcoin recipe and functions as an intermediary, adding to your security and anonymity. Be sure to also opt-into each site’s feature to add a phone number for two-factor authentication, just another easy step to maximize your level of warm fuzzy security.
Now that you’re all signed up its time to add a bank account and routing numbers to your Coinbase account and buy some Bitcoin. Note that if you want to ensure instant transaction you should also link the debit card associated with your account.
We’re ready to buy some BTC! Tap that buy/sell are on the menu and, you guessed it, cluck buy Bitcoin. Now just input how much of your currency you would like to send from the linked bank, and it will display the amount of Bitcoin you will receive. You can also go the other way around and put in your desired purchase in BTC first in you know the amount required for your use.
The fees for purchasing Bitcoin on Coinbase are as follow:
- If the total transaction amount is less than or equal to $10, the fee is $0.99.
- If the total transaction amount is more than $10 but less than or equal to $25, the fee is $1.49.
- If the total transaction amount is more than $25 but less than or equal to $50, the fee is $1.99.
- If the total transaction amount is more than $50 but less than or equal to $200, the fee is $2.99.
If you wish to buy more than $200 of Bitcoin at one time a variable fee of 1.49% of your total purchase kicks in. It’s worth noting that the fee comes out of the BTC you are buying and is not added to the amount taken out of your bank account.
So, if you want to buy $200 of Bitcoin from your bank account the fee will be $2.99 meaning you will receive only 197.01 worth of BTC. But remember anything over $200 kicks in a flat rate, so a $300 purchase would bring a fee of $4.47.
There are other fees associated with different specifics of some transactions and the above is always subject to change so be sure to consult their website before making transactions.
Next, we have to set up your blockchain account which is rather straightforward. Just click the signup button and follow the steps. You will want to send any newly purchased cryptocurrency to you Blockchain along with sending it thereafter cashing out and before putting it back into Coinbase. Another security measure but one which we see as a requirement for sports bettors. Next, it is imperative that you request a backup recovery phrase from Blockchain. If your wallet becomes inaccessible due to password issues it is the sole way to restore it. The 12-word passcode also allows compatible apps to import your wallet to if the need should arise.
Now that your ass is covered with all of these wonderful security blankets, we can start making some Cardi B level money moves. First, get yourself a Bitcoin address using your Blockchain account under the “Request” tab. This will create a window with a bunch of input options that aren’t relevant right now. The thing we need is the Bitcoin address which Blockchain has generated, a new number should be randomized whenever you receive bitcoins.
Copy and paste that address, head back to Coinbase and click the “Send” option atop the main menu and paste that bad boy in the “Recipient” slot. Click to review your transaction and full send it once you are happy with the specifics. You will be directed back to the main page with a live status of the transfer to Blockchain with a “complete” readout when confirmed enough times
Once the currency is live on your Blockchain it is now secured and ready to be sent to your sportsbook, online casino or silk road account, whatever blows your skirt up. You will first need to acquire a specific address for the betting site you are looking to use. Click “Send” on the Blockchain main page, paste the sportsbook address into the “To” section and add the transfer amount. Click continue to review your info and that’s that folks, you have successfully added cryptocurrency funds to your sportsbook account.
Withdrawing money is pretty much the same process but in reverse. When you request a payout from your book it will ask you to provide a Bitcoin address in which to deposit funds. Head over to your Blockchain main page and tap that “Request” button and get yourself a different address than you used to send the money before in order to max out anonymity. Copy that new address and send it to your book and request your payout. From here you can leave it there, move it you Coinbase, use it for something else on another site or send it to you a bank account as USD. Coinbase will give you an estimate on how long it will take the funds to make it into your bank account and a flat fee of 1.49%. If all checks out, press “Sell Bitcoin” and we’re right back where we started, with some good old American currency in our bank account.
Which Cryptocurrency is Best for Sports Betting?
Now while Bitcoin is the most popular there are others to be aware of, so before I drop the mic on this article let’s take a look at your options. These days finding a site to accept Bitcoin has become standard but many have taken to allowing players to use Litecoin, Ethereum or Bitcoin Cash to name a few. There are dozens of currencies which various books accept and literally thousands of “alternative currencies” which may or may not matter someday.
Betting with Bitcoin
Bitcoin got the cryptocurrency party started back in 2009 and remains atop the mountain, firmly entrenched as the industry leader. It holds the highest value by far and is also the most accepted crypto for any use. If you are using cryptocurrency you really should start here, just be aware that you’re gonna wanna keep an eye on things because volatility can be an issue at times with BTC.
Betting with Bitcoin Cash
BTC or Bitcoin cash has been gaining traction since its split from Bitcoin in August of 2017. The details of this fork are muddled but for now, consider Bcash to be a separate entity with a similar name. Much like Bitcoin, it is a widely accepted alternative that is supported both by Coinbase and Blockchain.
Betting with Litecoin
Litecoin (LTC) is a clone of Bitcoin but with a few specific advantages. First off it is quicker in its transfers, it uses a different encryption method and provides better prices on its built-in fees. While still shadowed by the popularity of BTC it is a fast-rising option in the market and is being added to many sportsbooks as a standard offering.
Betting with Ethereum
Ethereum (ETH) has grown to become one of the largest and most used cryptocurrencies in the current market. Books have for some reason not been offering ETH as much as some lessor options but at most major outlets you should have no problem funding a sportsbook account with Ethereum.
Betting with other Cryptos
While the above is by far the most popular and widely accepted choices there are a mind-numbing amount of coins to look into, if you so desire. If you do your homework you can find books that accept dozens of cryptocurrencies for your betting needs. As long as you can find a book that wants to play ball, the avenues are endless.
Conclusions about cryptocurrency and the sports wagering industry
As you can see, if you are willing to put in a little time there are many upsides to betting with Cryptocurrencies and you can expect it to grow even more as peoples trust in it does. The game remains the same but now, using crypto, sports bettors are offered an added level of financial security, smoother wait times and lower fees. I know it seems like an annoying process to learn but once you begin to move things around, and you see some savings in your transactions, you will be sold on Crypto as a viable way to fund your sportsbook accounts. Also don’t forget to explore the options outside of Bitcoin, if you bet sports seriously than you know how to read markets and might be able to make some extra scratch by a trading coin while betting with it.