Nigerians love sports, and they are incredibly proud of their local Nigerian Football Premier League. Still, it also means that Nigerians are fans of sports betting, and they are among the top African countries regarding sports betting.
Here we’ll talk about the legality of sports betting in Nigeria and tell you all the vital things regarding sportsbooks, markets, odds, and other relevant details about sports betting in this African country. Read on, and you will also find out the top Nigerian online bookies and expert tips so you can go in prepared to tackle your favorite pastime.
Nigerians love to bet on sports, and sports betting is legal per Nigerian laws. The activity is governed by the National Lottery Act of 2005 and the National Lottery Act of 2007 and is regulated by the National Lottery Regulatory Commission or NLRC. This federal body ensures transparency and accountability of lotteries and licensed sportsbooks.
When it comes to online sports betting, the platforms that operate remotely can apply for a local Nigerian Remote Operator Permit that lasts five years. This permit allows them to advertise their services to Nigerian people legally and does not require them to create local subsidiaries. Many global online sportsbooks have applied and received this remote license and legally provide their services to Nigerian punters.
When selecting the best sports betting site in Nigeria, you should consider several things:
Before creating a profile with an online sportsbook, you need to check their license and see if they are licensed to operate in Nigeria. The platform will have the primary license from a reputable gaming commission and a local license from the Nigerian NLRC. Sites without this license are considered illegal per Nigerian law.
When selecting your online sports betting website, you should check the offered bonuses and promotions, no matter if you are from Nigeria or somewhere else. Many online bookies have tempting welcome bonuses and run promotional deals that can come in handy for beginners. However, please take a closer look at the accompanying wagering requirements, as these can be tricky in the long run.
Search for online sports betting platforms that you can quickly start using, as you want to bet immediately and not spend days learning the platform. Some provide a better user experience than others, so you need to be careful and choose the one you can easily navigate and learn. Nigerians prefer to use the Internet on their mobile devices, so they should look for an online sportsbook with excellent mobile optimization or a mobile app.
Look for an online sports betting platform that provides competitive odds and has the markets you prefer. For example, Nigerians love football, so they should look for a platform that supports football betting, provides competitive odds, and charges low margins.
The available deposit and withdrawal methods also have a crucial role when selecting an online sports betting platform. No matter what the bookie offers, you can’t play if you cannot deposit funds.
Nigerians prefer to make deposits and withdrawals via their credit and debit cards, bank transfers, and popular online banking options. Since the legal sportsbook platforms have local Nigerian licenses, some accept payments in the Nigerian Naira currency.
There is no significant difference in sports betting in Nigeria or any other country. The only difference is the Nigerian Gambling Law, which is stricter and requires the online betting website to have a local license for remote gaming issued by the Nigerian NLRC. Generally, here are the steps you need to take to place a bet in Nigeria:
The people of Nigeria have a long-standing love for sports, and they love football. Of course, many notable athletes come from Nigeria, and the nation is proud to support its people. Here are the sports markets that are most popular in Nigeria:
NBA and European competitions are popular choices for bettors from Nigeria. There are notable Nigerian players in the NBA.
Nigerians love to bet on tennis, and they are not selective and bet on Grand Slam matches, ATP, and WTA tournaments, including the local Lagos Open.
Nigerian Premier League, Bundesliga, English Premier League, La Liga, UEFA Champions League, Europa League, and AFCON are the most prevalent sports Nigerian people bet on.
Betting on boxing is widespread in Nigeria, as two former world boxing champions have roots in Nigeria.
All the online sportsbooks available in Nigeria have varied offers for the types of bets they provide. They all have flexible services and try to accommodate Nigerian bettors to the best of their abilities. However, the most popular types of bets Nigerian bettors usually place are:
The win bet is among the most popular bets in Nigeria, as this is primarily used for the most popular sport for Nigerian bettors, football. It is more commonly referred to as 1X2, Match Outcome, or Full-Time Result bet, and all online sportsbooks offer it as an option.
Nigerian punters also like to place live or in-play bets, popular during football matches. The live bets are placed in real-time as the game progresses. The live bets are popular with all online sportsbooks, as they often have second-to-second changing odds as the game progresses.
The odds margin is the way for sportsbooks to make money, as they charge a specific margin on each event, no matter the outcome. The odds margin varies between sites and can often vary between the sports.
In the case of top-rated popular sports where many punters bet, the odds margins are usually lower and can vary between 1.5 to 3% for the top sports and leagues. In the case of Nigerian legal sportsbooks, seeing as Nigerians love to bet on football, the odds margins are lower.
Nigeria’s most famous legal online sports betting websites have many promotions, bonuses, and free bet offers for their players. All of these, without exception, come with terms and conditions, as there is no such thing as free money. We always remind our readers to familiarize themselves with the T&Cs before accepting the bonus or promo deal. Here is a rundown of the usual bonus offers Nigerians get:
Almost all online sports betting platforms offer a welcome bonus. Usually, it is a percentage match of the welcome bonus between 50 and 100% on the initial deposit with free bets or an offer for affiliate casino games.
Some online sports betting platforms also have no-deposit bonuses, but these are rare. It is usually a tiny bonus amount that the new player can use to sample the games and is enough to enter into one or two bets.
Free bets are favored on online sports betting websites and are awarded at the platform’s discretion. Free bets are often awarded to regular players during a particular competition or are linked with making a deposit and can be used only in select markets like football or horse racing.
Cashback offers are ongoing promotions that many online sportsbooks offer to their members. With the cashback promo deal, the bettors get back a certain percentage of the funds they’ve bet or lost on the platform. Loyalty and VIP programs are cashback promotions.
Enhanced odds are also called price boosts and are popular promotions with many sportsbooks. The enhanced odds are time-limited boosts of the regular odds and usually don’t cost extra for the players to join this promo.
Online sports betting sites must have deposit and withdrawal options that make it easy for Nigerian people to use these platforms. The payment methods must be appealing and convenient, preferably in the most convenient currencies, Nigerian Naira and USD.
While online sportsbooks often have a long list of deposit and withdrawal options, people from Nigeria prefer to use the following deposit and withdrawal methods:
✅ Debit cards – Nigeria’s most widespread debit cards are Visa, Interswitch, Verve, and Naira MasterCard, and all legal online sportsbooks in Nigeria accept them as a viable payment method. Debit card deposits are fast, convenient, and usually have very low fees, so these are the preferred banking method for Nigerians.
✅ Bank Transfer – Online bank transfer is a fast method of making online payments, and Nigerians like to use it to add money to their online sportsbook accounts. Most online sportsbooks accept online bank transfers, which are quick and easy when making a deposit but are slow when making a withdrawal. The most popular direct bank deposits in Nigeria are from UBA, Union Bank, Fidelity Bank, Stanbic IBTC Bank, FCMB, First Bank, etc.
✅ Online Payment Transfer – Nigerians like to use PayCom, an online payment transfer service that more and more online sportsbooks in Nigeria accept. The PayCom method is fast, reliable, and can be done via mobile, which is why many Nigerians prefer it.
Here are some expert tips that will help you with online sports betting in Nigeria and make it fun:
Gambling legality is a complex matter in Nigeria, as online gambling is not regulated well, with outdated laws and many loopholes. The Nigerian government has a National Lottery Regulatory Commission that issues licenses and regulates all gaming activities.
Online betting is a gray area in Nigeria, as the old laws don’t have clear stipulations on online gambling. There are games like roulette and slots considered illegal in Nigeria. Still, Nigerians can go online and use an international, offshore-based casino that accepts Nigerians and play any casino game they like.
Sports betting is safe and legal in Nigeria, and many local and international licensed sportsbooks operate within Nigeria. Of course, online sports betting is also allowed and legal, as long as the sportsbook has a license from the Nigerian NLRC.
The legal limit for sports bettors is 18 years of age, and all online betting websites enforce this. Players younger than 18 cannot create an account with online sportsbooks, as most online bookies do thorough checks on the player’s age.
The age limit in Nigerian betting sites is 18 years.
The deposit limits vary per the selected deposit method. Nigerian players must deposit a minimum of 100 NGN (Nigerian Naira) per the majority of available deposit methods and a maximum of up to 10,000 NGN.
Nigerian bettors who win a sports bet on an online sports betting platform must report their winnings with the Nigerian tax services and must pay 25% personal income tax on all winnings.
The withdrawal time depends on the available withdrawal method. In the case of using debit cards, the withdrawal time is between one and three days. Still, Nigerians prefer to use bank transfers as a withdrawal method, and the withdrawal time takes from 24 hours and seven business days.
There is no one uniquely perfect online sports betting site in Nigeria or elsewhere. When it comes to sports betting sites in Nigeria, BetWay, 22Bet, and 1XBet range very high on the list, as these have many features that make an excellent online sportsbook.
The legal sportsbooks that provide their services in Nigeria have almost all global sports markets in their offer, and Nigerians can take advantage of all these.
Nigerian sports bettors prefer to bet on football, mainly the top European leagues like the Premier League, La Liga, Bundesliga, major European football competitions like the Champions League and Europa League, and the African Cup of Nations. They also like to bet on basketball, tennis, and boxing.
Sports betting odds in Nigeria work as they do in all other places – the online bookmakers calculate the odds and add in their odds margins to those displayed to the players. Nigerians prefer the decimal odds format display.
The free bets depend on the particular bookie, and Nigerian players get free bets options. The free bets depend on the selected online sports betting website, and they are often a part of the welcome bonus and can be used for a particular sport.
The sign-up bonus is available on almost all online sports betting sites, including those in Nigeria. The sign-up bonus is provided on initial sign-up to the platform, but please note that the different online betting platforms have different welcome bonuses. Some have percentage match sums of the initial deposit, and others have fixed welcome bonus sums, but all come with terms and conditions.
Almost all online casinos and sports betting websites in Nigeria provide access to BeGambleAware.org and Gamblers Anonymous. However, at this time, Nigeria does not have any dedicated service to help people battling gambling addictions.