The Rhode Island sports betting process began in 2018 after budgetary measures for the following year surprisingly included $23.5 million in new tax revenue from sports betting. During this same time period, Senate President Dominick Ruggerio had introduced Senate Bill 2045, proposing the authorisation of state-operated sports wagering at both the Twin River and Tiverton casinos.
The bill was brief in detail, outline only where the betting operations would take place as well as prohibiting wagers on collegiate teams based in Rhode island. Interestingly enough, despite despite the Rhode Island constitution requiring voters to approve of any gambling expansion, it was revealed that voters had already approved sports betting in 2012.
This included Class lll gaming (sports betting) at institutions in Lincoln and Tiverton. Due to the past voting in the 2012 referendum, new legislation was ultimately not needed to introduce legal sports betting in Rhode Island. Governor Gina Raimondo signed off on the budget in June 2018, officially legalising sports betting in the state.
The state went mobile in January 2019 with the bill S 0037, introduced by Senate President Ruggerio. The bill was approved by the Senate and the House the next month and was signed into law by Governor Raimondo in March.
Where to bet at in Rhode Island
Rhode Island’s sports betting operation is run through the state lottery in a partnership with William Hill, so the well-known bookmaker will provide the state’s app technology and bookmaking services.
This is the only option for mobile betting and its official site is www.SportsBetRi.com. This online sports betting site can be accessed from anywhere within the state.
As stated in the bill approving online gaming, the player must first sign up at one of the two land-based casinos in the state before being able to bet on mobile.
Right now it stands as the official sports betting website in Rhode Island and also acts as the two land-based casinos (Twin Rivers & Tiverton) online sportsbook.
Both of these casinos launched their land-based sports betting operation in late 2018. They both feature a wide selection of sports to bet on and are open every day of the week.
Times of operation for Twin River’s sportsbook:
Monday - Thursday: 11 AM - 12 AM
Friday: 11 AM - 1 AM
Saturday: 9 AM - 1 AM
Sunday: 9 AM - 12 AM
Tiverton casino sportsbook:
Monday - Friday: 11 AM - 12 AM
Saturday - Sunday: 9 AM - 12 AM
The two casino sportsbooks along with Rhode Island’s sports betting site offer a wide selection of sports to bet on. Available sports on the mobile site include:
- Auto Racing
Please note: It is legal in the state to bet on both college and professional sports, however, making bets on teams based in Rhode Island is not allowed. Although not necessarily a huge loss for bettors due to the small magnitude of pro and college sports teams in the state, some notable teams unavailable for betting include Brown, Johnson, RIC, Bryant and Providence College.
RI online and mobile sports betting regulation & Law
Rhode Island legalized sports betting in 2018, but that didn't include mobile betting. It had previously been approved by voters but was formally authorized via the state budget in 2018.
The state initially opened two casinos, which made sports betting limited to land-based operations.
There are two casinos right now operating in Rhode Island. Both the Twin River Casino & Hotel and the Tiverton Hotel Casino have live sportsbooks on site. Both of these sportsbooks are powered by William Hill and IGT.
Another option for mobile betting includes BET NOW (sportsbetrhodeisland.com), this is an online sports betting site and can be accessed from anywhere within the state. Right now it stands as the official website of the sportsbook Rhode Island.
The current laws in Rhode Island dictate that the player must first register in-person at one of the states approved locations before betting on mobile devices.
Rhode Island sports betting FAQ
Is sports betting legal in Rhode Island?
Yes. Thanks to the law that was passed in 2018 by the state legislature and a separate expansion in 2019, Rhode Island sports and mobile sports betting are now legal. It’s currently active at two casinos and mobile betting is offered on the state’s official sports betting website.
Who oversees Rhode Island sports betting?
The Rhode Island Lottery has the task of regulating and overseeing the industry. IGT and William Hill both work as partners of the casinos and official mobile site. They both help operate and provide services for the sportsbooks. As it stands right now, tax revenue from sports betting will be divided as such:
State: 51 percent
IGT: 32 percent
Casino: 17 percent
Where can I bet on sports in Rhode Island?
Sports betting is available at either one of the state’s two casinos:
- Twin River Casino (Lincoln)
- Tiverton Casino
Will mobile sports betting be available in Rhode Island?
Yes, mobile sports betting is already available at SportsBetRI.com. This site can be accessed anywhere in the state and serves as the mobile sports betting site for both Rhode Island casinos.
The original law included only in-person betting at the Twin River casinos, but the legislature has since expanded to allow statewide mobile betting. That bill was signed into law in March 2019.
Who can apply for a Rhode Island sports betting license?
As of right now nobody is able to apply for a sports betting license. The lottery operates the industry through the state’s two casinos, and there does not appear to be any type of process for application or licensure.
Who can bet on sports in Rhode Island?
The legal gambling age in Rhode Island is 18 years old and no one under this age may make bets of any kind. The player must also make all mobile bets within the state’s borders.
Rhode Island Sports betting Revenue
Revenue for Rhode Island has increased each month leading up to August. A side by side comparison of the two months shows an increase of $24,209 in total revenue.
State - 51% of revenue
Vendors - 32% of revenue
Casinos - 17% of revenue
Total sports betting revenue:
Punters in the state wagered $2.3 million more in August than in July:
July: $8.3 million
August: $10.6 million
The revenue between the state’s two casinos saw Twin River gather most of the action but at the same time saw revenue stay the same with a increase in the amount of money wagered. :
Twin Rivers (Lincoln)
July: $6.6 million
August: $7.4 million
Tiverton saw an increase in total amount wagered on bets and a revenue increase of 18.7% from July:
Tiverton Hotel Casino
July: $1.5 million
August: $2.1 million