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Since they have prospered in many sports, it is only logical that Germans should be interested in gambling. Nevertheless, what are the greatest German online bookmakers? Where can German punters find bookies with best odds?

We’ve looked at the German betting industry and have the latest banking tips, news and, of course, our picks for the top betting websites within Germany.

Best Betting Sites in Germany

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Licenced in both the UK and Malta Generous welcome bonus for new users Promotions for major sporting events Free-to-play prediction games Excellent customer service and security
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Best Online Bookmakers in Germany – March 2024

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Bonuses at German Betting Sites

In order to lure punters and retain them, many bookies in Germany provide sign up bonuses and other special promotions. The ones mentioned above are some of the most excellent gambling platforms one can find for residents of Germany; each offering new customers a welcome bonus.

A great deal of free bets further complicates the situation. There are many other offers that we have tried out with our group, but these are the ones we found to be more interesting than the others and which have been listed above.

Payment and Banking for German Punters

Customers should not worry about those websites that are approved by Schleswig-Holstein because everything is considered to be ‘genuine’ and legal. A variety of credit and debit cards like Visas as well as MasterCard are acceptable.

Even though there is no information of persecution by German officials against people using unlicensed websites, some German businesspeople are extra careful and prefer to make payments through e-wallet. Among many other firms established in Germany, there are few that provide such payment services. Some of them are:

PayPal

In Germany, PayPal is revered and highly respected for its online payment processing. If you use it for your sports betting experience, you will be able to kick back and relax knowing that the company has an excellent reputation for safety and security. Similarly, if you have many betting accounts or want to change from one currency to another then PayPal is the best place to go.

ClickandBuy

Having been initially launched in 2000 in Cologne, the company then moved its headquarters to London following concerns raised by its owner over German gamblinglegislation. Clickandbuy is accepted at more than 770 online casinos across the globe featuring such prominent brands like Ladbrokes, 888Sport and William Hill.

CLICK2Pay

This company is based in Munich and it has 888 websites to select from. Of course, their wallet works on sites like William Hill, Betway and Pokerstars.

E-Wallets

German citizens can also avail themselves of anonymity at German betting sites through the use of major international e-wallets like Neteller and Skrill.

Wooden gavel and flag of Germany

Germany’s Stance On Gambling

Gambling is an old habit in Germany and has permeated the German culture. The area of Baden is known for having the first legal casino in the world, which was established as far back as 1765. In recent times, however, gambling has been highly regulated by a government that has put stringent laws to check on it.

The European Union’s opposition to this treaty and that of betting companies has been upheld by courts but the situation is still rather nebulous. In January 2008, ‘Interstate Treaty on Gambling’ became effective in fifteen out of sixteen German federal states. Initially designed to last for four years (though it ran for four and a half years), it was thought would be reconsidered later.

The main point of law was to ban all gambling services from Germany except for online horse racing. The accord had international implications, leading to the imposition of penalties on foreign bookmakers who served or advertised their wares in German markets. ISPs were authorized by the legislation to deny access to virtual gambling houses and other types of gaming portals; it also banned banks in Germany from receiving payments emanating from betting sites.

It is no surprise, therefore, that Germans make up 10% of all online gamblers worldwide; thus many people in the country were not happy with these laws and did not even pay attention to them. Nevertheless, Germany remained powerless since its judicial authority could not be extended beyond its frontiers while bookmakers from abroad made every effort to take advantage of Germans’ love for betting despite the legal consequences that might follow thereafter.

Bwin, one of Europe’s foremost betting firms, stated that over a fifth of their €816m net gaming revenues in 2011 resulted from the German market (during the prohibition). The German gambling industry has been partially liberalized since July 1st 2012.

Private enterprises were able to apply for sports betting and lottery licenses, and the company was equally legible for an online license. At first, there was a limitation on the number of licenses which stood at twenty and this included a 5% tax on stakes that has to be paid. The revised Act maintained its illegal status of online casinos games.

However, they were also of the view that Germany was using this as a shield to protect its state-owned betting model and make it hard for foreign companies to get a license. In 2016, the European Court of Justice declared the 2012 treaty as being in breach of EU law and principles on free movement of services within the Union.

In March 2017, the 16 states of Germany approved a new Treaty whereby the number of permits was raised from twenty to forty. Nevertheless, this novel pact also faced criticism for doing nothing else than increasing the number of licenses in order to open up Germany’s online gambling market completely.

In the recent times, German online slots gambling industry was left dumbfounded by news that two major slot providers, Novomatic and Merkurs had limited their games in Germany. The reasons behind these withdrawals were suspected to be either Germany or the EU might impose legal consequences on them. Nonetheless, there has been no indication of any regression or even a threat of legal penalties for sports betting in Germany.

German flag and bet keys on computer

Can I Bet Online in Germany?

Yes, in essence. These illegal bookmakers disregard German regulations with impunity because of enthusiastic betting fraternity and EU backing. Poker and casino revenues are also big earners for top European companies including firms that deal with gambling.

  • Fully licensed and certified by independent regulators.
  • Approved for secure financial transactions and data protection.
  • Reputation for dealing with complaints quickly and fairly.
Germany flag

Tax on Winnings at German Betting Sites

From 2012, every kind of sport gambling in Germany has become taxed at a rate of 5% on stakes. It is expected to apply to all German citizens and everyone who might place their bets within the territory of Germany. The ban was just another proof that the Germans were trying to discourage online gambling; it further shows that they are not comfortable with such platforms. This kind of subtraction from your betting stake can be quite disappointing because it will make it much more difficult for you to get some profit through this.

There are various responses by German bookmakers to the tax, which have different consequences for profit per bet. However, Bwin has chosen to take on the tax burden instead thus enabling its customers to continue gambling as usual. Although this hit their profits per bet, it kept the site’s popularity levels up. Alternatively, other companies such as Ladbrokes will only tax winning bets and so they pay for losers’ tax whereas Stan James does not charge any taxes to Germans at all since it does not have a license in Germany.

Germany’s Favourite Sports

Germany boasts an amazingly opulent sports history, with football and horse racing being the major betting sports in Germany. Bayern Munich is one of the world’s topmost football clubs, and there is a great deal of gambling interest from German bettors in both Bundesliga and other major European leagues.

On an annual basis, the German Derby in Hamburg attracts top-class equine fields. Another popular sport for betting is:

  • Ice hockey
  • Basketball
  • Handball
  • Boxing
  • MMA

The Deutsche Eishockey Liga is one of the leading ice hockey leagues outside North America, with the greatest number of Canadian and American players abroad.

Germany has seen an increase in the popularity of basketball, with Basketball Bundesliga (BBL) attracting an average of 4,300 fans per game and featuring 18 teams from all over Germany. In Germany, handball has also become more popular in the recent past and it was first contested at the 1936 Olympics in Berlin.

Flag of Germany on football

German Betting Sites – Our Verdict

The German sports betting market is among the most attractive ones in Europe with more than 80 million people and a love for gambling. It is not difficult for German residents, despite an attitude of isolationism from their leaders to place bets in sports, poker or casinos as European companies have made it very simple.

The future looks positive for the country with increasing pressure from the European Union for Germany to adopt a better system of licencing and the possible realization by policy makers that increased business numbers in their country will lead to more taxes.

German Betting FAQs

Is online gambling legal in Germany?

Yes! There may be restrictions in place if you use a bookmaker from a specific country, but this can be bypassed by using a VPN.

What are the best bookmakers for betting on football in Germany?

There are many great bookmakers that offer excellent odds and markets on football matches including the Bundesliga. If you sign up, you may also be eligible for free bets.

Can I bet online in Germany using my mobile?

Yes. Most online bookmakers now offer mobile betting for German players. This means you can bet on the go and in-play on your favourite sports.
Q.

Can German residents get a deposit bonus when they sign up to a bookmaker?

A.
Yes, most bookmakers offer bonuses when you sign up to their site. It’s not just new players that enjoy perks though – many sites offer regular bonuses for betting on sports.
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