Arkansas Online Betting Sites

Daniel Collins

Written by: Daniel Collins

Last Updated:

Read Time: 7 minutes

Finding itself in America’s Heartland, and right next door to the largest state in the union, Arkansas is another state in the middle of the country that loves to gamble.

Top Arkansas Online Betting Sites

The population of the state is not very high (not surprising considering the state location and its types of industry), but what the state lacks in people it more than makes up for in character, and love of their sports teams.

While there is no professional sports team in Arkansas, the college teams are the main focus, and the basketball and football teams have had long runs of success at the top level.

Gambling in Arkansas has been a challenge for those residents that like to be entertained with a few bets here and there.

Thankfully, the state has had some recent changes take place that should pave the way for more gaming in the state in the coming years.

Let’s take a look at the current state of online gambling in Arkansas.

Sports Betting in Arkansas

Arkansas has been one of the most conservative of all the states when it comes to gambling regulations. In fact, it is one of the only states that made for-money pools like those you all play for March Madness to be illegal.

Now, there wasn’t any prosecution for these things, but you can imagine how slow a state like Arkansas may move into regulated sports betting.

With the repeal of PASPA in 2018, however, it appeared that the government of Arkansas may be shifting its thought on gaming in the state.

Rather than rushing into writing laws like some of the other states around them in the spring of 2018, Arkansas instead put the expansion of gambling in the state in the hands of the people.

In November 2018, residents of the state passed the measure in a vote, meaning that there would not only be an expansion of land-based casinos but that sports betting would also be locally regulated in the state.

To date, only one property, Oaklawn Racing Casino Resort, has been granted a sports betting license, so it is the only location in the state currently taking wagers.

It opened for business on July 1, 2019 making Arkansas the 9th state to take local sports bets.

Offshore Betting Sites for Arkansas
Residents of Arkansas can place bets at offshore sportsbooks. These sportsbooks are typically not under the jurisdiction of U.S. law since they are located overseas. Therefore, they are not regulated locally by Arkansas or any other U.S. state’s laws. They are, instead, governed by the laws of the country in which they are based.

Online Sports Betting

Strangely, Arkansas residents did not vote to pass regulations that would allow for mobile and online sports betting within their state when they passed the rest of the gaming expansion.

This puts a significant crimp in the growth of local betting options in Arkansas.

With only one retail sportsbook open at this stage, it will be very difficult to convince many residents to place wagers.

However, after reviewing the impact that online and mobile sports betting has had on the tax revenues in states that have offered it since day one like New Jersey, where over 80% of the bets are placed online, the Arkansas government may consider changing their mind.

There is no question that the initial revenue numbers in Arkansas are meager as a result of not having mobile, and there will be questions about why the state didn’t push harder to give residents what they want while also finding a way to generate more tax dollars.

In the meantime, these are some trusted offshore sites that accept sports wagers from Arkansas users.

Horse Betting in Arkansas

Horse racing is steeped in tradition in Arkansas. You can understand why if you ever travel to the state – its wide open spaces make it easy to build and operate farms, which means that many horses are bred and trained around the state.

There are two racetracks operating in the state. The first is Oaklawn Park, which has a rich history in the horse racing world. This track hosts the Arkansas Derby, which is the largest horse race in the state – it has a seven-figure purse.

The other racetrack in Arkansas is the greyhound track Southland, which runs races all year long in both the daytime and the evening.

From a betting perspective, anyone who heads to either of these tracks will not only be able to bet on the races being run at the facility, but also on races from across the country via simulcast in the racebook.

This gives players a chance to bet on a race almost all day depending on what is being run in each time zone.

Top Arkansas Racebooks

Online Horse Betting

Unlike many other states where racetracks are not allowed to offer their own online betting site, Arkansas residents can bet with the Oaklawn Park online betting site.

This site gives players who create an account the option of betting on Oaklawn races or others across the country. Bettors can also see the races on the site so they can stay on top of the action.

There are other betting options as well, including many offshore racebooks.

The management of Oaklawn Park take exception to outside operators poaching their potential customers, but for now, there are no restrictions on anyone in Arkansas betting with any Arkansas-facing betting sites, including offshore sportsbooks.

Casino Gambling in Arkansas

Casino gambling had been frowned upon in Arkansas for many years. There were no legal forms of casino games to be found in the state until 2005 when the Local Option Horse Racing and Greyhound Racing Electronic Games of Skill Act was passed into law.

This allowed for electronic skill games to be added to the floors of the two racetracks. With no tribal casinos in Arkansas, this is the only option for land-based casino gaming in the state.

The referendum that the residents of Arkansas voted in favor of in 2018 also included wording that would allow not only for casino games to be expanded at the racetracks but would open up two more casino licenses to go out to bid.

This is a massive step in the right direction for the state, and we will see more gaming sites and options for residents in the coming years.

Online Casinos in Arkansas

Even though the measure passed in November 2018 to allow for an expansion of land-based gambling in the state, there is no discussion at all about allowing online caisno games to be played by residents.

Given how slow the state is moving on mobile and online sports betting, it is highly unlikely there will be any change to this position in the near future.

For now, residents of Arkansas do have the option of playing with an offshore site, which are regulated by foreign gaming authorities.

Best Casinos for Arkansas

Lottery in Arkansas

A sure sign of the conservative approach to gaming in Arkansas can be seen in the shocking fact that there wasn’t legal lottery gaming in the state until 2009.

At that time, the Arkansas Sponsorship Lottery was born, giving players from the state to enter the huge draws like Powerball and Mega Millions. The proceeds of this lottery go towards improving education options for young people in the state.

Arkansas Betting FAQ

Is local sports betting regulated in Arkansas?
There is only one physical location in the state where you can place bets on your favorite sports teams, and there is no indication when any more facilities will open.
When will state regulated online sports betting be available in Arkansas?
It is difficult to say with certainty when you will be able to make sports bets from a mobile device in Arkansas. It seems that residents weren’t keen for it when they voted back in 2018, but with dwindling numbers and the emergence of mobile betting as the leader in generating revenue and handle in other states, it is in the best interest of the state government to review this policy and make adjustments as soon as possible.
What is the best sportsbook for Arkansas?
There are only a handful of available in sites in Arkansas. Any site should have reviews so you can make sure it is safe to play at.