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Is Sports Betting Legal in Kentucky? Updated: April 2024

Last Updated on 23/04/2024

Ever asked whether sports betting is legal in Kentucky? Well, the good news is that it is, and this guide is here to show you how you can legally bet on sport in the Bluegrass State.

Now that sports betting is legal in KY you can bet on sport in-person at one of the retail sportsbooks, and mobile sportsbooks will be live very soon. All of this means that you’ve never had an easier way to bet on sport and enjoy the best odds and promo offers.

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Compare the best sportsbooks in Kentucky

Bet365
Recommended
Favicon
4.7/5
  • Bet $1 get $365 in bets
  • Just $10 minimum deposit
  • Get $365 even if $1 bet loses
Bet365 Bonus
First Bet Safety Net up to $1000 OR Bet $5 and Get $150
Kentucky
Players from Kentucky accepted
T&Cs apply, 21+
Go to Bet365
Bet now
Payment Methods
Find out more on Bet365.
Withdrawal
1 – 10 Days
Apps
License
Kentucky (US) Horse Racing Commission
Award
EGR - Operator of the year (2017)
Show less
BetMGM
Hot Offer
Favicon
4.7/5
  • Hundreds of betting markets for major events
  • Live streaming offered
  • Competitive odds
BetMGM Bonus
Up To $1500 in Bonus Bets Paid Back if your First Bet Does Not Win
Kentucky
Players from Kentucky accepted
T&Cs apply, 21+
Go to BetMGM
Bet now
Payment Methods
PayPal
Bank Transfer
VIP Preferred
+
Withdrawal
1 – 5 Days
Apps
License
Kentucky (US) Horse Racing Commission
Award
GGA - Digital Operator of the Year (2023)
Show less
FanDuel
Hot Offer
Favicon
4.6/5
  • Extensive range of sports
  • Competitive odds
  • Speedy sportsbook platform
FanDuel Bonus
Bet $5 Get $200 in Bonus Bets if your bet wins
Kentucky
Players from Kentucky accepted
T&Cs apply, 21+
Go to FanDuel
Bet now
Payment Methods
PayPal
Bank Transfer
Cheque
+
Withdrawal
1 – 10 Days
Apps
License
New Jersey (US)
Award
Global Gaming Awards (2022)
Show less
Caesars
4.
Favicon
4.5/5
  • Full Caesar promo
  • Great value deal
  • Awesome sportsbook bonus
Caesars Bonus
100% up to $1000
Kentucky
Players from Kentucky accepted
T&Cs apply, 21+
Copy
Bet now
Payment Methods
PayPal
Bank Transfer
E-Check
+
Withdrawal
1 – 5 Days
Apps
License
Kentucky (US) Horse Racing Commission
Show More
DraftKings
5.
Favicon
4.5/5
  • Diverse sports book
  • Generous promotions
  • User-friendly betting platform
DraftKings Bonus
Kentucky
Players from Kentucky accepted
T&Cs apply, 21+
Bet now
Payment Methods
PayPal
VIP Preferred
Play+
+
Withdrawal
1 – 5 Days
Apps
License
Kentucky (US) Horse Racing Commission
Award
EGR - Operator of the year (2023)
Show More
BetFanatics
6.
Favicon
4.5/5
  • Comprehensive sports coverage
  • User-friendly sportsbook
  • Competitive betting odds
BetFanatics Bonus
Bet $100, Get $100 in Bonus Bets Every Day for 10 Days!
Kentucky
Players from Kentucky accepted
T&Cs apply, 21+
Go to BetFanatics
Bet now
Apps
License
Kentucky (US) Horse Racing Commission
Show More
ESPN Bet
7.
Favicon
  • Freelive streaming
  • Parlay builder tools
  • Cash out betting
ESPN Bet Bonus
Kentucky
Players from Kentucky accepted
T&Cs apply, 21+
Best Alternative
Bet365 Go to Bet365
Payment Methods
Visa
Mastercard
Trustly
+
Withdrawal
0 – 10 Days
Apps
License
Kentucky (US) Horse Racing Commission
Show More

Understanding the KY gambling laws

It’s important to note that while all forms of casino gaming are illegal in KY, sports gambling is legal in Kentucky. Plus for a long time, pari mutuel horse racing betting was the only form of gambling in the Bluegrass State. This meant that a lot of people were wondering when sports betting would be legal in Kentucky, especially as neighboring states such as Indiana, Ohio and West Virginia had already passed sports betting legislation.

Thankfully, sports fans in KY don’t have too long to wait. This is because the bill HB 551 was passed early in 2023 which paved the way for the legalization of sports betting in the state.

As a result sports betting is legal in Kentucky as of September 7, 2023. This can only be done at one of the retail sportsbooks that is officially licensed by the Kentucky Horse Racing Commission.

However, the best part is that online betting is legal in Kentucky as of 6am on September 28, 2023. This means that there is the potential for anywhere up to 27 legal online sportsbooks to operate in KY giving sports fans the freedom to bet from anywhere within the state.

Who can bet on sports in Kentucky?

While sports betting is legal in Kentucky, there are strict laws about who can enjoy this form of gambling. This means that you will have to be at least 18 years old to bet on sport. Plus it’s worth noting that some online sportsbooks in KY will require you to be at least 21 years old and you’ll be expected to prove this by providing some form of government-issued ID.

You will also only be able to use these sportsbook apps from somewhere within the Kentucky state borders. Each of these apps will contain geolocation software to ensure that you are only betting from within the Bluegrass State.

What can you bet on in KY?

Not only can you bet on sports in Kentucky, but you can bet on a massive range of sports. These obviously cover all of the major US sports like baseball, basketball, football and hockey, but it also applies to everything from soccer and tennis to motor sports, golf and boxing.

What’s best is that you can also bet on college sports taking place within the state such as the basketball matches involving the University of Kentucky and the University of Louisville. Just note that no form of betting on high school sports is permitted in KY.

Finding the best online sportsbooks in KY

Now that gambling is legal in Kentucky, you’ll probably be ready to try some sports betting. So we’ve prepared the following table that shows you the best legal sportsbook apps currently available in KY. This shows you handy information about what kinds of welcome offers you can get, along with who their retail partners are in case you want to place an in-person bet.

KY sports betting app Welcome offer Retail partner
DraftKings $200 in bonus bets Cumberland Run
BetMGM TBC Sandy's Gaming and Racing
FanDuel $100 in bonus bets and $100 off NFL Sunday Tickets Churchill Downs
Fanatics TBC Oak Grove Racetrack
Caesars TBC Red Mile Racing
Bet365 $10 per touchdown on a nominated NFL game Sandy's Gaming and Racing

DraftKings - Market-leading online sportsbook

draftkings sportsbook us
DraftKings: Pros & Cons
  • $200 bonus bet pre-launch promo
  • Great for live betting
  • Enjoyable tournament betting
  • Supremely competitive odds
  • Can be intimidating for rookie bettors

Not only is DraftKings one of the biggest and most trusted sportsbooks in the US, but it’s also legal in KY. The brand has partnered up with Cumberland Run and is regulated by the Kentucky Horse Racing Commission to give you a legal way to bet on sport.

This means that you can sign up to DraftKings and enjoy the brand’s excellent odds and its superior live betting platform. Plus DraftKings has even put on a generous pre-launch offer for KY that simply gives you $200 in bonus bets that you can use once mobile betting goes live on September 28.

DraftKings
4.5/5
T&Cs apply, 21+
Bet now
DraftKings Highlights
  • Diverse sports book
  • Generous promotions
  • User-friendly betting platform

BetMGM - Heavyweight sports betting brand comes to KY

betmgm sportsbook
BetMGM: Pros & Cons
  • Great Edit My Bet option
  • Lots of odds boosts
  • Generous promo offers
  • Reliably strong odds
  • Navigation can be tricky

There’s no denying that BetMGM is an excellent sportsbook and the operator has teamed up with Sandy’s Racing and Gaming to give you a legal way to bet on sports in KY. While we’re still awaiting details of the brand’s pre-launch promo, early signs are that it could give you plenty of bonus bets for making a qualifying deposit.

Elsewhere, you will find that the BetMGM sportsbook is packed with features that’ll take your sports betting up a level. These include plenty of enhanced odds offers as well as a flexible Edit My Bet function. A great choice for anyone looking for a little more control over how they bet.

BetMGM
Sports Bonus
4.7/5
Up To $1500 in Bonus Bets Paid Back if your First Bet Does Not Win
Free Bet
|
T&Cs apply, 21+
Go to BetMGM
Bet now
BetMGM Highlights
  • Hundreds of betting markets for major events
  • Live streaming offered
  • Competitive odds

FanDuel - Enjoy an prelaunch bonus in KY

FanDuel: Pros & Cons
  • Great for same game parlays
  • Trustworthy betting platform
  • Fair and competitive odds
  • User-friendly app
  • Generous pre-launch offer

This is another massive sportsbook that has made the smart move to be there at the launch of legal sports betting in KY. FanDuel’s retail partner is Churchill Downs which is a real statement of intent, and the brand has put on an excellent pre-launch promo. This will give you $100 in bonus bets for signing up and you’ll also get $100 off your NFL Sunday Tickets on YouTube.

Everything else about FanDuel is as you’d expect from a premier sportsbook. This means getting endlessly competitive odds, an intuitively designed betting app, and cool features like same game parlays to add some interest to your betting.

FanDuel
Sports Bonus
4.6/5
Bet $5 Get $200 in Bonus Bets if your bet wins
Welcome Bonus
|
T&Cs apply, 21+
Go to FanDuel
Bet now
FanDuel Highlights
  • Extensive range of sports
  • Competitive odds
  • Speedy sportsbook platform

Fanatics - One of the most exciting new online sportsbooks 

Fanatics Sportsbook Sport Mobile US
Fanatics: Pros & Cons
  • Great FanCash rewards system
  • Personalized betting pages
  • Odds boosts available
  • Jersey Drop promos
  • Relatively new brand

Kentucky sports fans can look forward to one of the hottest new sportsbooks coming to the Bluegrass State when Fanatics goes live on September 28. This is a brand that’s already cracked the sports merchandise world and it looks equally good for betting on sport.

The brand’s app has already successfully launched in four other states, and it has teamed up with Oak Grove Racetrack to go legal in KY. You’ll love the cool features like the personalized betting pages, and the FanCash reward program offers you a great way to get vouchers to spend on bonus bets and merchandise. Watch this space to see what the Fanatics pre-launch bonus for Kentucky will be.

BetFanatics
Sports Bonus
4.5/5
Bet $100, Get $100 in Bonus Bets Every Day for 10 Days!
Welcome Bonus
|
T&Cs apply, 21+
Go to BetFanatics
Bet now
BetFanatics Highlights
  • Comprehensive sports coverage
  • User-friendly sportsbook
  • Competitive betting odds

Caesars - Trusted brand for online sports betting 

is caesars legit
Caesars: Pros & Cons
  • Excellent reward program
  • Top sports betting promos
  • Good betting odds
  • Trusted betting brand
  • App can be buggy

Everyone knows the Caesars brand and it’s great news that it’s bringing its sports betting app to Kentucky. This is being done as a result of its partnership with Red Mile Racing, and it basically means that you’ll be able to enjoy Caesars’ quality betting odds and exceptional reward program from anywhere within the Bluegrass State.

We’re still awaiting confirmation of what the Caesars pre-launch bonus for KY will be, but early signs are that it’s a deal that could give you a fair amount of bonus bets to play with. All of which gives you the perfect start once mobile betting goes live in KY on September 28.

Caesars
Sports Bonus
4.5/5
100% up to $1000
Risk-Free Bet
|
T&Cs apply, 21+
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Bet now
Caesars Highlights
  • Full Caesar promo
  • Great value deal
  • Awesome sportsbook bonus

Bet365 - Innovative sportsbook launches in Kentucky

Bet365 US Sportsbook
Bet365: Pros & Cons
  • Amazing betting odds
  • User-friendly website
  • Lots of betting options
  • Up to $50 touchdown pre-launch offer
  • App navigation could be better

This is a relative newcomer to the sports betting scene in the US, but Bet365 has already successfully launched in a number of states, and there’s no reason why it can’t do the same right here in KY. After all, the UK-based brand is renowned for putting on some of the best odds on the market, and you’ll enjoy the full complement of betting lines for each sporting event too.

Perhaps the best reason to sign up to Bet365 KY is the fact that the brand has organized a great pre-launch promo. This will give you $10 for each touchdown scored on a nominated NFL game up to $50. Perfect for all of those KY football fans looking to celebrate the new season.

Bet365
Sports Bonus
4.7/5
First Bet Safety Net up to $1000 OR Bet $5 and Get $150
Free Bet
|
Go to Bet365
Bet now
Bet365 Highlights
  • Bet $1 get $365 in bets
  • Just $10 minimum deposit
  • Get $365 even if $1 bet loses
At bet365 we don't do ordinary, that's why if you sign up now you'll get the choice of two great New Customer Offers, the First Bet Safety Net up to $1000 or Bet $5 and Get $150 in Bonus Bets. Deposit required. Bonus Bets wager excluded from returns. T&Cs, time limits and exclusions apply. Gambling Problem? Call 1-800-Gambler 21+

Now that we’ve shown you some top Kentucky sportsbooks, you’ll be ready to get started. So here’s a step by step guide to how to take your first sports bets in the Bluegrass State:

  1. Pick one of the KY sportsbooks from our shortlist
  2. Download their app to your iOS or Android device
  3. Register your account by providing your personal information
  4. Verify your identity by submitting some form of photo ID
  5. Claim your pre-launch bonus: You may have to enter a specific promo code to do this.
  6. Make a deposit: You’ll usually be allowed to make deposits with cards, ewallets and ACH bank transfers.
  7. Start betting: Now you can use your deposit to fund your sports bets. Just click on the odds that look good to you, enter your stake and submit your bet.

This guide has shown you that sports betting is legal in Kentucky and that it can be great fun too. After all, there are plenty of retail sportsbooks to choose from and there are a host of online betting apps that will be going live at the end of September 2023.

This means that you can now look forward to having the freedom to bet on a massive range of sporting events from your smartphone or tablet. Just remember to play responsibly and there’s no reason why you can’t enjoy lots of sports betting entertainment now that online sports betting is legal in Kentucky.

Our favorite sports betting bonuses for April 2024

Bet365
1.
Favicon
4.7/5
First Bet Safety Net up to $1000 OR Bet $5 and Get $150
Virginia
Players from Virginia accepted
Requirements (WR): 1x Bonus, Min. Deposit: $10
Go to Bet365
Get bonus now
At bet365 we don't do ordinary, that's why if you sign up now you'll get the choice of two great New Customer Offers, the First Bet Safety Net up to $1000 or Bet $5 and Get $150 in Bonus Bets. Deposit required. Bonus Bets wager excluded from returns. T&Cs, time limits and exclusions apply. Gambling Problem? Call 1-800-Gambler 21+
BetMGM
2.
Favicon
4.7/5
Up To $1500 in Bonus Bets Paid Back if your First Bet Does Not Win
Virginia
Players from Virginia accepted
Min. Deposit: $10
Go to BetMGM
Get bonus now
T&Cs apply, 21+
FanDuel
3.
Favicon
4.6/5
Bet $5 Get $200 in Bonus Bets if your bet wins
Virginia
Players from Virginia accepted
Requirements (WR): 1x Deposit, Min. Deposit: $10
Go to FanDuel
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T&Cs apply, 21+
Caesars
4.
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4.5/5
100% up to $1000
Virginia
Players from Virginia accepted
Requirements (WR): 1x Deposit
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Get bonus now
T&Cs apply, 21+
DraftKings
5.
Favicon
4.5/5
Virginia
Players from Virginia accepted
Requirements (WR): 1x Deposit
Get bonus now
T&Cs apply, 21+

Yes, sports betting is legal in Kentucky right now. Not only can you bet in-person, but as of September 28 2023 you can even use a sports betting app in Kentucky too.

📱What sports betting apps can you use in Kentucky?

Now that sports betting is legal in KY, you can enjoy lots of top betting apps from the likes of FanDuel, DraftKings and BetMGM. Check out our guide to see more of these legal KY betting apps.

❓How old do you have to be to bet in Kentucky?

You can enjoy KY sports betting as long as you are over the age of 18 years. This is because sports betting is legal in KY, although it’s worth noting that you might have to be at least 21 years old to use some apps.

🏈How do I try online sports betting in Kentucky?

The fact that sports betting is legal in KY means that there are lots of great betting apps that all give you an easy way to bet on sports. This means that you can download an app, register an account, make a deposit and then wager real money on the betting odds.

Yes, not only is sports betting legal in KY, but this also applies to mobile betting. So check out our guide to see which betting apps are legally allowed to operate in the Bluegrass State.

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Top Betting Sites
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Bet365
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BetMGM
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FanDuel
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FanDuel Review
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Caesars
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DraftKings
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DraftKings Review
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