Gamblers in North Dakota enjoy a surprising range of options for face-to-face play. The state permits wagers at tribal casinos and allows charitable organizations to use games of chance as fundraisers, albeit with certain restrictions. In addition, betting on horses is possible at the state’s racetrack and there are proposals to allow ‘racino’-style betting as well. At the moment, though, there is no provision for online gambling in North Dakota.

Instead, North Dakota has five tribal casinos where guests can play slots and wager on assorted table games. There is also a racetrack, offering on-course and simulcast betting on the horses. North Dakota does not permit sports betting at present, although two of the tribal casinos have tentative agreements to operate a sportsbook on their premises.

No, online gambling is not legal in North Dakota at present. However, this could be due to changes in the near future. In 2018, the U.S. Supreme Court struck down the Professional and Amateur Sports Protection Act, the key piece of federal legislation that prevented betting on sports. The following year, a bill to legalize sports betting got through the house in North Dakota but failed to clear the Senate. Next, in 2020, sportsbook provider IGT announced plans to introduce sports betting at two established tribal casinos in the state. Precedents from other states suggest that existing gaming destinations may operate a sportsbook in the absence of any legislation that expressly prohibits this.

So, things are changing. However, the current legislation permits retail betting only. North Dakotans wishing to bet on their favorite team has two options at present. They can play Daily Fantasy Sports games, which are fully legal in North Dakota but do not provide a full betting experience. Alternatively, they can look to offshore gambling platforms. Offshore providers operate in a legal gray area. There is no history of the authorities in ND prosecuting people for playing on these websites. However, because the sites are neither licensed nor regulated in the state, bettors have little legal recourse in the event of any dispute.

What you need to know about creating an account for online gambling in North Dakota

Creating an account for online gambling in North Dakota is quick and easy, even if you’ve never done it before. Just follow the steps listed below, and you’ll be placing your bets in no time.

  1. Find an online gambling site in ND from our list – This site continually updates to include all the gambling platforms that operate in the state. We’ll also let you know about all the latest promos and offers for bettors at sportsbooks in North Dakota.
  2. Provide your personal information – To create an account, you will usually need to give your name, date of birth, postal address plus phone and email contacts. Licensed gambling sites will also ask for the last four digits of your SSN. This is to confirm your identity and protect against fraud. In some cases, betting sites ask for further ID or proof of address before verifying your account.
  3. Make a deposit using your preferred payment method – Today’s betting sites offer a wide range of payment systems. These include traditional bank cards, prepaid cards, e-wallets, and, increasingly, options to gamble using crypto.
  4. Start gambling – Once your account is up and running, and you have deposited some funds, it’s time to play. Pick out the odds that appeal to you, click on them, then type your stake into the bet slip. And that’s all there is to it.

North Dakota’s best online gambling sites

There’s a great choice of online gambling sites out there. Some got their start in casinos or fantasy sports, others moved into the U.S. market after success overseas. Here’s a look at some of the biggest names in the business.

FanDuel North Dakota

Players can already access FanDuel in North Dakota. However, they cannot enjoy the full range of sportsbook and casino services. Instead, they are limited to the DFS games that made the platform’s reputation before SCOTUS ditched PASPA and opened the door for sports betting across the USA.

PointsBet North Dakota

This Australian site is unique in that it also offers a spread betting option on top of its traditional sportsbook. Spread bets are a bit like trading stocks and shares, but instead of investing in a company you buy or sell the number of points you expect in a game. Like the stock exchange, you can win big … or lose your shirt.

Betrivers North Dakota

Each new state that allows online gaming issues a set number of licenses to gambling providers. Betrivers are consistently among the first to gain a license for a new market. It’s a solid, reliable online sportsbook with a loyal following, and customers find they can bet on all the big events here.

BetMGM North Dakota

For many, gambling evokes the glamour of Vegas. BetMGM has its roots firmly on the strip. The company started out running casino resorts in the heart of Vegas. With the rise of online gambling, it was quick to diversify and set up an internet sportsbook division that brings a hint of Vegas to most states where it can get a license.

Gambling platforms like to offer bonuses to bring in new customers. Gamblers also like bonuses, because it’s a way of betting for little or no risk. Let’s take a look at some of the most frequent offers on the market for bettors in North Dakota.

  • Sign up bonus. If a gambling platform does not offer one of these, is it even worth opening an account? A good online casino or sportsbook should be giving new customers an incentive to sign up. That’s where the sign-up bonus, good for all new accounts, comes in.
  • Risk-free bet. Sportsbooks frequently offer to refund the stake on a losing bet. It might refer to your first bet on the platform as part of a welcome bonus, or it could be a promo on a specific market. Note that the refund is usually a free bet, which cannot be withdrawn as cash. Therefore, gamblers still risk losing if they don’t back a winner with that freebie.
  • Free bets. A free bet is exactly what the name suggests: a chance to stake on a market without risking your own hard-earned cash. The good news? You can increase your stake without increasing your potential losses, or you can insure a regular bet to lock in a win. The bad news? You can’t withdraw these as cash, nor can you get the stake back with a winning wager.
  • Matched deposit bonus. Most commonly seen as part of a welcome offer, a matched deposit bonus sees the sportsbook or casino add free bets to your account. The more you pay in, the more freebies you’ll get (usually up to a defined limit). Sometimes these are available to exist, customers, especially members of a VIP club. Watch out for wagering requirements, which can make it difficult to turn the free bets into real money.
  • No deposit bonus. Many online casinos offer no deposit bonuses to attract new customers. Players can trigger them simply by creating an account, with no need to pay in any funds or undergo full verification. However, it’s not all good news. These bonuses tend to be small. Moreover, there are often big wagering requirements before you can access any winnings. Finally, to make any withdrawal, you will need to complete the full verification process.

Who regulates online gambling in North Dakota?

The North Dakota Gaming Division is responsible for regulating all legal gambling activity in the state. That would include online gambling if and when it becomes legal.

At present, the Gaming Division’s key activities are as follows:

  • Enforcing tribal-state gaming compacts. This involves random spot checks at North Dakota’s five tribal casino sites. Inspectors are there to ensure fair play and make sure that wagering limits are adhered to.
  • Regulating and administering charitable gaming. The Gaming Division audits gaming organizations, reviews tax returns, resolve complaints, and provides training for gaming organizations.

The state governor appoints members to the Gaming Division directly.

Providers of the best gambling software in ND

Different sportsbooks and casinos use different software to power their platforms. North Dakota’s gambling venues draw on some of the biggest names in the market. Read on to find out more about the tech that makes your bet work.

  • IGT Playsports – This is America’s leading brand for B2B sports betting tech. IGT was the company behind proposals to run a sportsbook at two tribal casinos in North Dakota: Grand Treasure Casino and Sky Dancer Casino & Resort. The Turtle Mountain band of Chippewa Indians announced that partnership in 2020, but restrictions caused by the pandemic slowed the development of gambling venues. IGT also provides the software for several leading sportsbook operations.
  • Rush Street Interactive – This is the platform that operates BetRivers, and also in Pennsylvania. From its base in Chicago, Rush Street has operated gaming sites since 2015. It provides online and retail sportsbook and casino services for licensed operators throughout the Americas.
  • SBTech – Part of the Gammastack group, SBTech provides the software for DraftKings sportsbook. It offers more than 2,000 markets on up to 60,000 events, with the capacity to handle live betting on 30,000 different games and tournaments. Since it opened for business in 2007, SBTech has worked in more than 80 countries worldwide. Its platforms are licensed by leading global authorities, including the UK Gambling Commission and the Malta Gaming Authority.

North Dakota’s history of online gambling

The citizens and legislators of North Dakota have long been anxious about gambling. Way back in 1890, when the recently-formed state ran into financial trouble, there was a proposal to adopt a state lottery. Local reaction was not favorable: the ‘Farmers Review’ newspaper of the era dubbed it a ‘scandalous proposition’ and a ‘monstrous iniquity. Not surprisingly, the lottery found no approval.

  • The first changes: For almost a century, the story did not change. Stout, god-fearing citizens of the Prairie had no need for gambling. It was not until 1976 that the state authorities allowed charitable gaming for fundraising purposes. This was a small step, permitting bingo in church halls and raffles at school fêtes. But it did, at least, accept that games of chance would not transform Fargo and Bismarck into Sodom and Gomorrah.
    Fast-forward another decade, and 1987 brought approval for bets on horse racing. Five years later, tribal casinos got the go-ahead. Now, North Dakotans could go out and bet at their leisure, at least in a select group of authorized locations. Poker was permitted at land-based casinos for the first time in 2005. There are suggestions that the authorities may permit 10 racinos, with slots that use the results of previous horse races to determine pay-outs. This means that the machines comply with rules that prohibit casino games away from tribal lands. In 2002, 112 years after the first attempt, North Dakota approved a state lottery. Even so, this was a limited offering. There were no state-specific games, and players could choose from just five multi-state games. Moreover, there were no scratch card games on sale in the state.
  • Waiting for a sportsbook: The end of PASPA in 2018 meant that responsibility for sports betting regulations was passed to each state. So far, though, North Dakota has not rushed to permit wagers on sporting events. In 2019, a bill that would have allowed sports betting made it through the house, but was voted down by the state senate.
    Later, in October 2020, IGT announced a partnership with a tribal casino operator. The plan was to open retail sportsbooks at two established casinos in the state. The experience of tribal casinos elsewhere in the USA — specifically New Mexico — suggests that post-PASPA, there is no requirement for state legislation to approve sports betting on tribal land. However, at the time of writing there is no information on if and when these sportsbooks might start operations.
  • Online gambling: It’s a similar story for online betting. North Dakota’s small population is widely dispersed, making it a difficult market for a successful casino. Therefore, online betting would seem to be the obvious way to provide a profitable gambling service.
    So far, though, the state has not shown any inclination to authorize online casinos or sportsbooks. Moreover, it specifically rejected a proposal to permit internet poker games. At present, gamblers in ND have little option but to wait for things to change, unless they are willing to enter the gray area of offshore providers.
  • What’s the problem?: At a time when many U.S. states are revising and liberalizing their gambling laws, North Dakota may seem like a hold-out. Yet this is no longer 1890, and the anguish felt by 19th-century Dakotans over the prospect of a lottery is no longer so viscerally expressed.
    The issue is more likely to do with the limited revenues that the state obtains from its current gambling activity. The lottery has the lowest per capita sales of any state in the Union, raising just $38 per person. Although charitable gambling is popular, raising around $200 million a year, low taxes mean that it contributes just $2 million to the state budget. Those tribal casinos also operate tax-free, with only a flat license fee payable to the authorities.
    Thus, North Dakota’s total gambling revenue is not large. This might explain why the state government is not greatly interested in the expanding gambling market. Either additional gambling would raise little additional revenue, or the state’s whole gambling tax system would need an overhaul.


How many online gambling sites are operating in North Dakota?

At present, there are no licensed online gambling sites available in North Dakota. Gamblers wishing to play online can only use offshore platforms, which are not subject to local regulations. This is a legal gray area, and players cannot rely on any legal redress in the event of problems.

Is online gambling on college sports legal in North Dakota?

No, there are no legal framework for sports betting in ND at present. However, in 2020 two of the state's tribal casinos announced their intention to introduce sports betting on-site. If and when those plans come to fruition, there is no reason why college sports could not be part of what sportsbooks offer.

When will online gambling become legal in ND?

North Dakota will not permit online gambling until a bill makes it through the local authorities. So far, there is little sign of this happening anytime soon. The most recent piece of gambling-related legislation was a 2019 attempt to permit sports betting. It failed to make it through the Senate.