Thinking about using a credit card for your sportsbook deposit?  Stop!  5 reasons not to use credit cards at sportsbooks.

Reason #1:  You Can’t Afford to Gamble

If you need to borrow money from a credit card in order to gamble, you probably shouldn’t be gambling and could use that money for something more essential, like maybe pay your bills or pay down some debt.  Let’s say you just ignored the most obvious reason I just mentioned. If you need to borrow money in order to gamble, it likely means you have also depleted your discretionary “bankroll” that you used to gamble for fun.

In that case, you should examine the unit size of each of your standard bets, the betting system you’re using, and reduce the amount of each bet to fit within your gambling budget, rather than borrowing money to have fun.  Remember to check out our article on Bankroll Management.

Reason #2:  Cash Advance Fees

Most people don’t realize that when you deposit money into most online sportsbooks, that your credit card company treats it as a cash advance!  So you may be hit with large surprise fees when you examine your credit card statement.  So not only are you borrowing money to gamble, now you’re already in the hole $25-50 (depending on your credit card fees) that you need to overcome in order to profit.  That’s just not smart if you are trying to grind out profit.



Reason #3:  Credit Card Fees

Well, if you are using an offshore book, you might be saying to yourself, they don’t charge me cash advance fees, because thes sportsbook charges the deposit as a “purchase”.  Sure, but usually they charge a 5-7% credit card fee for Visa or Mastercard and anywhere from 7-10% for American Express.  Yikes!  So for all of you gamblers out there who spend forever shopping for lines, hoping to find a -110 instead of a -120 on a moneyline bet… if you used a credit card, you have to factor in the extra fees you paid, in order to to eek out a profit.

Others of you might say, my online book doesn’t charge fees!  Well, yes, there are a few books that don’t require it, but ever wonder why you can only deposit small amounts?  They are trying to walk a very fine line of international laws.  All of these fees and hassles are not worth it in my opinion.

Reason #4:  Risk for Identity Theft

Ever wonder why those offshore books ask you for your driver’s license? utility bills? And other personal documents? To verify your account when using a credit card?  You guessed it.  It’s not surprising that a number of offshore books have been allegedly linked to credit card fraud rings.  It personally happened to me twice, early on in my gambling hobby and I made sure to never use the credit card deposit method again.

I don’t have anything against people using offshore books, I still use a couple from time to time for certain sports or specials.  But, if you’re going to use an offshore book, I recommend utilizing cryptocurrency deposits such as Bitcoin or ACED coin for your deposits in order to maintain your privacy and reducing your risk of identity theft.

5 reasons not to use credit cards at sportsbooks

Reason #5:  Maybe You Have a Problem

Circling back to reason #1… if you’re borrowing money that you don’t have in order to gamble.  MAYBE YOU HAVE A PROBLEM.  This is a good time to give yourself a reality check.  Gambling is not a profitable endeavor for most casual bettors.  You might get a nice score here and there.  But, sportsbooks and casinos are profitable businesses because… usually in the long run, the house always wins.


If you are dead set on pursuing the grind of betting on sports to earn a side or full time income, let me let you in on a little secret… professional bettors aren’t relying on credit cards to fund their bankroll on a regular basis.  In all seriousness, if you think your gambling is becoming harmful or you think someone you know is having a hard time dealing with problem gambling, please click here to learn more about obtaining help.


Have I used a credit card for a deposit before?  Sure, in a pinch.  I see some line, house special, or something I want to hammer and my money is tied up, and then I break my own rules, make a deposit, cringe at the fees and bet.  But, I would make this the exception to the norm vs. the norm.