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Spain online sports betting laws

The Spanish online betting scene has developed extremely quickly, and dozens of operators are now licensed to offer people the opportunity to wager here. With Spain established as one of the leading nations in the world of sport, with Spanish soccer and LaLiga at the forefront, the appetite for betting will surely always be keen here.

Is sports betting legal in Spain?

Yes, it is. The speed with which the Spanish sports betting scene has established itself and grown reflects the enormous changes in the country as a whole in recent decades. Spain’s process of democratization in the years following the death of General Franco in 1975 was incredibly rapid. The country now has one of the biggest economies in Europe.

Sports betting has matured swiftly in the time since the Gambling Act of 2011 was passed. This piece of legislation made it compulsory for betting operators to obtain a license before being able to trade in the country. This brought a sweeping change to the previously unregulated market place. All operators in Spain must now have a separate license for each betting product they offer – meaning many offer either casino or sports betting, though some carry both. All legal online operators must have a .es domain name and be licensed by Juego Seguro, the directorate that regulates gambling.

The speed with which Spain as a society has accepted gambling is notable. LaLiga allows for sportsbooks to sponsor teams so Bwin, one of the biggest names in the European betting scene, was the shirt sponsor of Real Madrid between 2007 and 2013.

By early 2021, there were about 80 companies offering sportsbook facilities to bettors in Spain. In 2020, the gross gambling revenue of sports betting in Spain was €365million – about $430million. That represented more than 40 per cent of the online gambling market, by far the biggest share, and an indication that the market had been resilient in the face of the COVID-19 pandemic. Many of the biggest and most experienced names in the international sports betting world have created a Spanish presence and possess a license to trade there. The competitiveness of the market place ensures that decent odds, bonuses and boosts are regularly available for bettors.

However, it should be noted that any winnings of more than €2,500 are taxable in Spain. The Spanish authorities have moved to strengthen the provision of responsible gambling measures in the country. A decree passed in September 2021 should, once approved, insist that gambling operators ensure they are providing a safe environment and are working to protect vulnerable groups, such as under-age bettors.

What odds format is used in Spain?

Decimal odds

Like most of Europe, Spain’s online betting operators display their odds in the decimal format. This style of odds is used in much of the world and is arguably the easiest way demonstrating the probability of a particular event happening. For example, if you want to place a bet on Sevilla to win this season’s LaLiga, the odds might be shown as 17.0. That means that for every $10 you stake, you will receive $170 if your pick is correct.

The same bet, with the same outcome and winnings, would be displayed using fractional odds, which are prevalent in the UK and Ireland, as 16/1. In North America, where moneyline odds are most popular, the same outcome would be shown as +1600. One of the reasons decimal odds are so easy to interpret is that, unlike in the other two formats, the price displays is based on your return, which will include your stake.

Top sports in Spain

Soccer

In Spain soccer is king. As a result, in Spain, soccer is incredibly popular and generates extreme passions among LaLiga followers. Spanish clubs such as Real Madrid and Barcelona have been at the peak of the European game, as well as the domestic LaLiga, for many years. Some of the greatest players of the modern game have spent many years in Spain plying their trade. The Spanish national team has also hit extraordinary heights in recent years, winning the FIFA World Cup in 2010 and the UEFA European Championship in both 2008 and 2012. Spaniards are justifiably proud of the soccer played in their country, which is extremely popular among sports bettors.

Spain sports betting FAQs

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