Is Matched Betting Legal Across the Globe?

where is matched betting legal

Among sports fans, one of the most popular activities to engage in is sports betting. This isn’t really a new development, as we have evidence of bets on sporting events taking place, dating back to the Ancient era. However, as society develops and changes, the ways in which we bet change along with it. The most recent way in which betting has changed to accommodate modern punters, is the concept of online betting. 

Online Betting

Since the early 2000s, online betting sites have completely dominated the betting world. Online betting is, exactly as the name implies, placing bets on various sports matches through online websites. These websites have made betting a lot more accessible, faster and easier. Punters, nowadays, can use these sites to place a bet from their home or while on the go. But, online betting has also led to the development of various other forms of betting that can be done online. In this article, we are going to focus on matched betting. 

What is Matched Betting?

Matched betting is a technique that many bettors use to maximize their profit. It relies on exploiting the free bets that many online sportsbooks offer in order to make a profit. Advocates for matched betting believe it to be risk-free, though of course, there is always a risk there. Matched betting does, however, minimize the risk. The idea is that a punter makes an account with two betting exchange websites, and place a bet at one using a free bet, while simultaneously placing the opposing bet with another website. The outcome here should be a win for the punter, no matter the outcome. 

Is Matched Betting Legal?

I’m sure some of you will be happy to hear, that according to this guide to matched betting in the US on Gamble USA, matched betting is legal and widely available in the US. Matched betting has not been made illegal in any U.S. state, and is completely legal around the country. And, the United States of America is not the only country where you are free to match bets. 

In the United Kingdom, double betting is a perfectly acceptable and legal practice. Though it isn’t popular, as many believe the idea is too good to be true, the ones who are familiar with the practice have been making quite a bit of profit from their matched bets. 

Matched betting is also legal in most of Europe as well. Sportsbooks and betting sites are a business, and they have made the decision to offer free bets. They will profit from your bet, regardless of whether you match bet or not, so there is nothing unsavory about the practice at all, which is why it is legal across the globe. 

Where is Matched Betting Illegal?

There are no countries which specifically prohibit matched betting, however, there are plenty of countries where online betting is illegal. In some of these countries, matched betting can still be done through land-based bookies, if ones who offer free bets can be found, though that makes the process a whole lot harder. 

Of course, there are also countries where all forms of gambling are illegal. In countries like Cyprus, Poland, Singapore, Lebanon, and the United Arab Emirates, all forms of gambling are illegal for one reason or another. Which, naturally, means matched betting can’t be done.


Matched betting is a pretty great, and safer, way to bet on your favorite sport. Many punters who’ve discovered matched betting have realized that they can make a pretty hefty profit, in a completely legal and acceptable way.