Bovada Is Returning to New York: What It Means for the Future of Online Gambling

Just a few days ago, the online gambling giant Bovada shifted course and announced that it would once again be returning to New York and is opening up gambling to players in the state of New York. If you aren’t a hard-core follower of the world of online gambling, you might have missed a piece of news that might have some impact on you. That’s especially true if you live in the state of New York.

For those who live in another part of the country and have been using Bovada for a while, you might not have even realized that there were parts of the U.S. where the site wasn’t operating. And, if you are a resident of the Empire State and are aware that there is still a ban on online casino and sports book gambling in the state, you might be a bit confused about Bovada returning to New York.

Bovada didn’t go into details about what led them to this decision. Nor have representatives of the state of New York said anything about whether there will be some sort of legal challenge to the announcement.

This gray area is large enough to cover the skyline of NYC, but that tends to be par for the course these days when it comes to online gambling in the U.S. The proliferation of gambling websites has continued unabated, and it’s tough to tell which are the best and which might not be the best home for your gambling dollars and cents.

What good news there is here is that those who enjoy gambling online and live in New York now have access to one of the top websites for that purpose in the world. In an industry where there are a lot of shady operators, Bovada provides a bastion of stability and experience.

But can bettors in New York trust in this as a permanent solution for their online gambling needs? Need they worry about getting involved with Bovada and then having the rugs pulled out from under them? And, assuming that the site does stay in play for New York, what advantages does the site bring to the table compared to others in the field?

Gambling in New York

As is the case with many hot-button issues in the United States, states usually have the option to make laws on their own concerning online gambling. But it can be hard to enforce those laws without some sort of edict coming down from the federal level.

Online gambling in any form is currently prohibited in the state of New York, whether it’s casino-type games like poker, or betting on sports like football. But Bovada clearly feels like there isn’t much risk involved in going back into action in the state. Or else they likely wouldn’t have proceeded to this point.

Perhaps that’s because they can see the way the winds are blowing, not just in New York, but in surrounding areas. Both New Jersey and Pennsylvania recently legalized sports gambling. In the meantime, a bill to legalize online casinos in New York has been knocking at the door of the legislature, and it seems bound to bust it down sometime very soon.

As far as legal ramifications, they are all Bovada’s concern right now. If you’re an individual gambler in the state of New York, there’s no reason that you shouldn’t partake of Bovada’s services right now. After all, the state or federal government aren’t going to come knocking on your door for the 25 bucks you bet on the Monday night football game.

The worst that could happen is that New York might toughen up its stance and try to shut down Bovada from offering its services. If that occurs, the most impactful thing that might mean for you is that you’ll have to pick another site on which you can gamble. Not too big a deal.

What Bovada Offers to New York Gamblers

Of course, the question for New York gamblers is whether or not Bovada returning to their state is worth their trouble. After all, as we’ve already established, there are other choices in the market. Yet what they’ll find in using Bovada is that they are getting involved with the gold standard of the online gambling industry.

After all, in an arena where there are many fly-by-night customers out there looking to bilk you out of your money, having an established name taking your bets should provide you with extensive peace of mind. But, if you need convincing, here are some of the things that Bovada offers to New York customers that many other sites cannot handle.


Listen to pre-game shows or sports talk shows and you are bound to hear the name Bovada come up in the discussion about sports lines. That’s because they get so much business on their sports books that their lines often become definitive.

By the same token, the business that they receive from gamblers from all over the world allow them to offer competitive paybacks. Of course, they’re still going to have a house edge. But the casino offerings on Bovada are more likely to offer you the opportunity for big winnings than you’ll find elsewhere.


When you look at the Bovada sports book, you’ll be hard-pressed to find a sport or event that isn’t included as one of your betting options. If you’re looking for a kind of one-stop shop for all your sports gambling needs, this is about as good as you can possibly hope for among the choices that you’ll have at hand. That even goes for those who like to make proposition bets or like to bet on things other than sporting events.

The same can be said about the Bovada online casino offerings. In recent years, the company has done an excellent job of expanding their options beyond the obvious poker and slot machine offerings. Chances are, if you can find it at your local casino, you can find it at Bovada, for a fraction of the hassle.


When you look to spend your gambling money online, you’d like it to go as far as possible. That means that you’d like to find a site where there are strong incentives in the forms of bonuses, free bets, and VIP perks. And Bovada can really offer you a lot in that department.

A lot of that comes from their experience in the market. They know what it takes to draw gamblers to the table, so to speak. For New York bettors whose options for incentives might have been limited to this point, this is a huge deal to have Bovada returning to the mix.

Deposit and Withdrawal Options

This area is always a big concern for online gamblers. It can be frustrating when you string together some serious winnings yet can’t seem to get your hands on that money. Bovada has its own policies concerning deposits and withdrawals, and you may or may not agree with all of them.

But the bottom line is that Bovada wouldn’t have lasted as long as they have or acquired the kind of business that they have amassed without the stamp of approval of discerning gamblers. That means that their policies must be beneficial in some way. The fact that they also now include the option of depositing in Bitcoin can really smooth out the process for getting the money that you’ve won back in your possession.

Bovada Drawbacks

Let’s be honest: No site is perfect. You won’t find a 100 percent satisfaction rate for customers at any of the major gambling websites. Whenever there are large amounts of money on the line, that is going to be the case.

Overall, Bovada has more positives in its favor than drawbacks working against it. But, in the spirit of full disclosure, here are some of the issues that could stand in the way of New Yorkers giving Bovada their business.

Customer Service Options

On the whole, Bovada has a fine reputation for customer service. But some complaints leveled at the site concern their lack of options for how to contact them, at least compared to other sites such as BetOnline or SportsBetting.

In the case of customer service, it can often come down to the individual agent with which you’re dealing. So it might be a good idea to take worries about Bovada’s customer service with a grain of salt. But you should be aware of them nonetheless.

Line Confusion

This has to do with betting lines on sporting events. Bovada might offer you a different line than they would others betting on the site. They base this on the level of experience and expertise that they feel a bettor might have.

If you are on the inexperienced side, this should work in your favor, since you’ll be getting the line with which it is easier to win your bet, at least according to the oddsmakers. On the other hand, expert sports bettors might find it more challenging to win on the cite.

Legal Uncertainty

We advised you earlier in this article that it seems unlikely that you will suffer any blowback if you live in New York and plan on taking advantage of Bovada returning to the state. But there are likely some of you who will feel uncomfortable being even tangentially attached to something that could be construed as illegal.

If you are one of those people, it makes no sense to tie yourself in knots concerning yourself about betting on this site. Bovada returning to New York might mean a lot in the big picture, but there’s no rule that says you have to be a part of it on the micro level. Better to find another site there that gray area we spoke about doesn’t exist.

What All This Means for Online Gambling

On the whole, Bovada returning to New York probably won’t mean too much in the grand scheme of things concerning online wagering and its overall legality and preponderance in the United States. But that bucket is suddenly becoming filled with those drops, many of which have fallen in the last year or so. Those recent drops seem to be favoring the online gambling world as a whole.

States are doing their best to get involved in gambling, trying to possibly get a piece of the revenue that it can bring. Casino gambling has already spread throughout the United States, and sports betting is making serious inroads since the Supreme Court essentially gave it a pass. Online wagering in these areas seems to be getting nearer and nearer to being a foregone conclusion.

Of course, there doesn’t mean there won’t be a setback to online gambling’s cause in the coming months and years. But the fact remains that more of the people who are making decisions in legislatures and the like are those who have grown up with the internet as a way of life. They don’t see it as the Pandora’s Box to all evils that many from an earlier generation originally thought it to be.

As a result, the news about Bovada returning to New York shouldn’t really surprise anybody. While it’s anybody’s guess whether the site will be able to operate with freedom in the state from here on out, it does seem clear that New York would be going against the grain if they make a big effort to stop it.


For New York gamblers, Bovada represents a chance for you to put your money up for grabs on a reputable site that contains lots of innate advantages. It will also give you the opportunity to compare and contrast it with other sites, and variety of choice is always a good thing for the customer. Bovada may or may not be in New York to stay, but the short and long-term prospects of the state’s gamblers have received a boost with this piece of news.

Jim Beviglia

Jim Beviglia joined as a staff writer in 2018, parlaying his years of freelance writing into contributions on a number of different topics. He handles the sport of horse racing for and the intersection between the worlds of cryptocurrency and online gambling in a weekly blog. For his full-time job, Jim handles the television and track announcing duties at a harness racing establishment near his home. He spends as much time as possible with his wife Marie and daughter Daniele, both of whom are used to hearing his long-winded monologues about either the struggles of his Fantasy baseball team or which Beatles song is definitively the best.

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